Dolores A. Carey

February 5, 2017 GMT

Dolores Ann Jakel Carey, 91, of Portage, died on Dec. 9, 2016, after suffering a stroke.

She was born Oct. 26, 1925, in Detroit, Michigan, the daughter of Bruno Adolph Ernest and Loretta Wanda Wilhelmine (Herrman) Jakel. She graduated from the business track of Denby High School at age 16, and studied briefly at Wayne State University’s business school, then worked for the Army Air Corps. On Dec. 20, 1944, she married 1st Lt. Theodore R. Carey, then a B-24 pilot who had five days earlier returned from the European theater. For the next 21 years she accompanied him to U.S. Air Force posts across the country, from Louisiana to Alaska, east coast to west. They finally settled in Wisconsin, first in Sun Prairie, then Pardeeville, and finally Portage. In retirement they owned a series of RVs and motor homes in which they traveled the country, particularly enjoying long stays in Texas during the winters and northern Michigan in the summers.


Dolores worked in secretarial positions before and after her wedding, then gradually realized a gift for interacting with people. She sold insurance, appliances and real estate; she operated the family Dairy Queen in Sun Prairie for six years. For more than 20 years, she was an active volunteer at Divine Savior Healthcare in Portage, up to just weeks before her death. She particularly delighted in interacting with children, welcoming them to the hospital and helping them feel comfortable in a stressful setting.

Dolores was the mother of four: Pamela (Paul Sieving), of Bethesda, Maryland, Scott (Patricia Mueller) of Chicago, Illinois, Sally, of Minnetonka, Minnesota, and Bryan (Stacy Starr) of Chesterfield, Missouri. She was the beloved grandmother of Theodore Sieving of Long Beach, California, Terra Carey of Minnetonka, Minnesota, Matthew Sieving and Lia Izenberg of San Francisco, California, Ashley Carey of Baltimore, Maryland, Brittany Carey of Washington, D.C., Brock Carey of Orange County, California, and Nicole Carey of Chesterfield, Missouri.

She was a natural teacher, turning games, travel and household chores into spelling, reading and math lessons without her grandchildren being aware of that (and always giving them an A!). She was also known for her love of and expertise at gardening, coaxing tomatoes into ripeness in Anchorage and flowers into bloom at every one of her homes over the years. She was the Milwaukee Brewers’ most ardent fan, exhorting and cheering from her recliner even when extra innings in west coast games kept her up long past her bedtime. She loved reading and promoting literacy, volunteering as a reading teacher both in Portage and in various cities in Texas, where she especially loved working with children whose first language was not English, giving them personal gifts of dictionaries when her time with them ended. She always voted in favor of ballot initiatives providing funding for schools and libraries.


She is survived by her brother, Roland (Joanne) Jakel of Drayton Plains, Michigan, and their daughters Joni (Michael) Hennard and Lori Jakel, and their children; her four children, their spouses and her grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents; her brother, Jimmy Jakel; and her beloved husband, T.R., who died in 1996.

Dolores exemplified the best of the classic German characteristics of women as valuing kinder, küche und kirche: children, kitchen and church. She was a superb, adventurous cook. She was an active member of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Pardeeville.

A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 11, 2017, at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Pardeeville with the Rev. William Runke officiating. Private burial has taken place at North Marcellon Cemetery.

The family requests that no flowers be sent. Memorial gifts in her memory are welcome to the “Leaps toward Literacy” program at Divine Savior Healthcare in Portage, c/o Ms. Alli Achterberg, Divine Savior Healthcare, 2817 New Pinery Road, Portage, WI 53901, or to the church or charity of your choice. Grasse Funeral Service of Pardeeville (www.grassefs.com) is serving the family.