Elsie Caroline Foged Laursen Jante was born July 20, 1927 and passed on Sept. 10, 2022.
Elsie was a loving daughter, sister, wife, mother, grandmother, friend, and role model. Our Mother was a proud Aggie, graduating from Rochester Agriculture School in 1946. While there she wore a gown she designed and constructed during her reign as the Prom Queen. Elsie was also legendary for driving the apple sprayer on a joy ride down the Main Street of Rochester on a quiet Saturday night. She was happy to be reprimanded and not expelled. She lived her entire life being independent, a trait she instilled in her children.
Elsie believed in the 4-H Program and was an active member and leader in Racine County. She won state and national awards for leadership and apparel design.
Elsie loved to cook and served thousands during her service in the kitchen at Cross Lutheran Church. From the annual Harvest Sale to weddings, funerals, fundraisers, she and Eddie Foster and her cadre of volunteers served meals beyond compare. The Masonic Hall was also the recipient of mom’s culinary skills. Fish fry’s, Installations, Past Master Dinners, salad luncheons, and fish boils were all prepared under mom’s watchful eye.
Our Mother was a caring, compassionate, and loyal friend. She was always preparing soups, casseroles, coffee cakes, and her world-famous barbecue for families and friends. She loved to host dinner parties, picnics, and our annual Christmas Eve Gathering on Jante Drive. She and Dad believed no one should be alone on Christmas. They lived the spirit of giving and sharing.
Elsie’s suitcase was always packed, as she loved to travel. Whether it be in trains, planes, or automobiles, she was there. Mom had an unending spirit of adventure and was always willing to explore. At the age of 85, mom rode the million-dollar highway in the Colorado Rockies on the back of a motorcycle, floated the skies in a hot air balloon, soloed on a minibike, cruised the Rhine, and was a fixture in any back seat, monitoring the snack bag and cooler.
Mother loved her Danish heritage. One of the highlights of her life was meeting her three aunts and numerous cousins in Denmark in 1983. Her Danish was rusty, but they shared the common language of family and love. She loved traveling the highways and byways during her numerous trips to visit family in Denmark.
Mom was passionate about the Danish Sisterhood in Milwaukee, aptly serving as the Sunshine Chair until the time of her death. She credited her daily dose of Danish Akvavit with the key to her long life. Skål Mom!
Elsie’s granddaughters, Alaina and Linsy, were the light of her life. Aside from FaceTime calls she enjoyed their rousing games of Lick it and Stick it, Uno, Yahtzee, Wii Bowling and Fitness. She resurrected her percussion skills by playing the drums during their air guitar concerts.
Elsie was creative and always willing to try her hand at anything. Making soap for church missions, swinging honeycombs, painting, rosemaling, embroidery, and hardangar. She embraced new technology by using email, Facebook, texting and Zoom.
At age 91, Elsie became an Honorary Sister in the Tri Sigma Sorority.
Mom’s 95 years have provided us with so many treasured memories. She was deeply loved by her family, Marcia and Lou, Larry, Becky, Alaina and Linsy, and Jim and Charmaine. We will miss her sparkling blue eyes and love of life. We will attempt to carry on her positive attitude, zest for living, kindness, compassion, and sunny disposition.
Our family is so happy Mother could take her final journey in her home on Jante Drive. We will be forever grateful for the love and care provided by Ivan, who was so much more than a caregiver, but also family. Aurora at Home provided unending compassion and support, especially Beth, Bri, Chaplain Greg and all the staff. Mom and Dad always said they had the best neighbors, and they were right. Bill Baker, and Ken and Susan Friend Kumba are shining stars.
A private family service will be held. Elsie will join her husband of 66 years, Glenn Phillip Jante, in the Southern Wisconsin Veterans Cemetery in Union Grove.
In lieu of flowers we would appreciate donations in memory of Elsie Jante to: Aurora at Home Hospice, 116 N Dodge St. Suite 6, Burlington, 53105; or to the Museum of Danish America, 2212 Washington Street, Elk Horn, Iowa, 51531. https://www.danishmuseum.org/get-involved/donate
Services have been entrusted to Integrity Funeral Services. Well-wishers may visit www.integrityfunerals.net.