Alice Leona Gilbertson

Alice Leona Gilbertson
Alice Leona Gilbertson

Alice Leona Gilbertson, age 94, took the Lord’s hand on Tuesday, April 5, 2016.

Alice was born on February 3, 1922, the second of eight children, to Henry and Leona (Luther) Vande Slunt on a farm near Brandon, WI.

She was always a willing worker at home, including milking the cows. She loved school, but after finishing eighth grade was sent to neighboring families to help out and bring the needed money home.

On February 14, 1942, Alice and friends went roller skating at the Columbus Park Pavilion. It was “Ladies’ Choice” when she met a handsome young farmer from the Town of Hampden, Jimmy Gilbertson, who reminded her of Van Johnson. They were married three months later on May 27th. They farmed with the Gilbertsons and purchased their own farm several years later.

Alice was an excellent cook and baker, seamstress, and crocheter. Alice raised three children, chickens, pigs, cows, and drove tractor on the farm. She also cooked at the Arlington Canning Factory and worked planting and harvesting tobacco.

Being a member of Spring Prairie Lutheran Church in Keyeser was an important part of her life. She taught Sunday School and was an active member and officer of the Ladies Aid. Along with a small group of ladies she sewed hundreds of quilts to be donated. Alice was always there to help friends and neighbors. Her strong faith in God helped her through difficult times. The worst was Jimmy’s death in 1987 at 69 years of age.

Their love leaves daughter, Mary (Jerome) Benisch of the Town of Hampden, sons Robert (Rae) Gilbertson of Anacortes, WA, and Ricky (Sue) Gilbertson of Slinger; ten grandchildren: Daniel (Nancy) Benisch, Colleen (fiance Chuck Coyle) Felicijan, Lori (Bill) Toutant, Daren (Mary) Benisch, Daryl (Courtney) Benisch, Tony (Jodi) Benisch, Joe and Julie Gilbertson, and Ali and Jim Gilbertson; twelve great-grandchildren: Stephanie and Melanie Benisch, Amanda (Ryan) Kartos, Alexa (fiance Travis Johnson) Benisch, Kelsey, Taylor, and Marli Felicijan, Jordyn and Jeromy Toutant, and Michaela and Mason Benisch, and Tesa Benisch; brothers: Howard and Leroy (Janet) Vande Slunt; sisters: Erna (Bernard) Vossekuil, Adeline (Marvin) Jahns, Marge Vande Streek; sister-in-law, Adeline Punswick; many nieces, nephews and a special friend Mary Sharpee.

Alice was preceded in death by her husband James Belmont Gilbertson, brother Delmer, and sister Harriet Westra.

The family greatly appreciates the wonderful care given to Alice by: Dr. Rolf and Dr. Sam Poser, nurses, and staff of At Home Again Assisted Living, and Hillside Homecare/Hospice.

Funeral Services will be held on Saturday, April 9, 2016 at 2:00 P.M. at Spring Prairie Lutheran Church, N509 Country Road C., De Forest, WI 53532, with Pastor Sylvia Lee-Thompson officiating. Burial will be in the parish cemetery.

Relatives and friends may gather at Spring Prairie Lutheran Church on Friday, April 8, 2016 from 4-7 P.M. and at the church on Saturday from 1:00 P.M. until the time of the service. In lieu of flowers, memorials to the church would be appreciated.