Heaven welcomed home a new angel as Judith Beth Margarethe (Johnson) Dagenais passed away peacefully after a long battle with Alzheimer’s Disease on December 21, 2020 at Lakeview Assisted Living & Memory Care.
Judith, lovingly known as ‘Judie,’ was born at home in Menominee, Michigan on August 17, 1939 to C. Julius and Maragethe (Wiandt) Johnson. Judie was a proud 1957 Menominee High School alumni who cheered on her ‘Maroon and White’ team as often as she could. Fate would seem to align when Judie - then Judie Johnson - met Wayne Dagenais while enjoying an evening out at Ma’s Bar in Marinette, Wisconsin. At the time, Wayne was a meat cutter working at his father’s store in Escanaba, Mel and Elmer’s Super Valu and Judie worked in the office at Plankington Packing Company in Menominee. Mel & Elmer’s received shipments from Plankington Packing in which Judie would attach notes to send to Wayne from afar.
On April 23, 1960, Wayne and Judie were united in love and in marriage. Judie and Wayne established their home in Escanaba, raising five children: Michael, Patrick, Barbara, Mary, and Susan. Wayne and Judie were best friends in love who spent their 49 years of marriage truly enjoying life to the fullest together. From co-owning and working side-by-side growing the business at Elmer’s County Market to their weekly golf outings to their regular Friday night dinners with friends and attending countless Packer games, the two shared a bond that surely lasts beyond a lifetime. That love was most profound in Judie and Wayne’s greatest treasure: their family. Judie loved to spend time with her family as much as possible. She loved to have the entire family over for special occasions and holidays where delicious food, smiles, laughter, and group hugs were always found.
Throughout her life, Judie had a passion for the arts and enjoyed several creative hobbies. Judie’s hobbies included painting, ceramics, rosemaling, knitting and sewing. She was an active member of Bethany Lutheran Church in Escanaba and involved in the former Morning Messenger Church Circle and Real Partners. Judie was a sister, wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt, friend and more to so many who were fortunate to know her. Her smiles, laughs, and her hugs will be greatly missed.
Judie is survived by children, Michael (Lisa) Dagenais, Patrick (Sherry) Dagenais, Barbara Dagenais, Mary (Dan) Zuber, and Dr. Susan Dagenais; grandchildren, Jessica (fiancé Rich Yeiter) Dagenais, Brent (Cassandra) Dagenais, Mitchell (Karissa) Dagenais, Samantha Schwalbach, Gregory Schwalbach, Jared (fiancé Samantha Hendrikse), Jalyn (Kevin) Dagenias-Gendron, and Adam Zuber; great-grandchildren, Aubree Ericksen, Easton Ericksen, Elaina Twarogowski, Oliver Yeiter, Alexis Twarogowski, Collin Dagenais, JoLeigh Dagenais, Carter Millette; brother, John Johnson; sister, Joy Mailloux; sisters-in-law, Janet Johnson, Sandye Dagenais, and Jane Sarnowski; brothers-in-law, Gary Dagenais and Roger Sarnowski; and son-in-law, Kurt Schwalbach. Judie is also survived by many nieces and nephews and her extended Elmer’s County Market family.
Judie was preceded in death by her husband, Wayne; parents, C. Julius and Margarethe Johnson; brother, J. Edward Johnson; parents-in-law, Elmer and Phoebe Dagenais; sisters-in-law, Anita Johnson and Marlene Dagenais; and brothers-in-law, Gary Mailloux and Dennis Wendt.
The family of Judie Dagenais would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to Lakeview Assisted Living and Memory Care and UP Health and Hospice for their compassionate care. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the family will be holding a private visitation and funeral to celebrate the life and love of Judie at the Anderson Funeral Home in Escanaba on Monday, December 28, 2020 with Rev. Terry Frankenstein of Bethany Lutheran Church officiating. Entombment will take place in the Gardens of Rest Mausoleum. Donations can be made to Bethany Lutheran Church of Escanaba and the Alzheimer’s Association.
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