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Hockemeyer & Miller Funeral Home

6131 St Joe Road, Fort Wayne, IN

OBITUARY

Marie E. Busch

June 21, 1921March 8, 2020
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Marie E. Busch, 98, of Fort Wayne, went to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on March 8, 2020. Born on June 21, 1921 in Cleveland, Ohio, she was a daughter of the late John and Bertha (Hausrath) Ehlers and a member of St Peter’s Lutheran Church, Fort Wayne.

She is survived by her children, Kathy Schultz, Larry (Jane) Busch, Chuck Busch, and Bob (Julie) Busch; grandchildren Anna (Ivan) Grimm, Sarah (Brian) Doyle, Johanna (Ben) Busch, Jacob (Kristin) Ronan, Jenni Ronan, Jessica (Ryan) Warner, Heidi (Jayme) Kessens, Jared Busch, Nicholas Busch, Justin (Bekah) Busch, Joseph Busch, Joshua Busch, Jordan Busch; and greatgrandchildren Everett Grimm; Fitzpatrick, Elizabeth and Deacon Doyle; Shiloh Marie Busch-Ediger; Ashton and River Ronan; Zachary, Lauren, Chloe and Tyson Chips; Kayla and Kendra Warner; Cayden Kessens; Oliver Busch and a new arrival in April. She was preceded in death by her husband, Rev. E. D. Busch; son Ted Busch; son-in-law Rev. Jerry Schultz; daughter-in-law Cindy Busch; and granddaughters Emily Marie Schultz and Jamie Elise Busch.

Funeral service will be 11:00am, Saturday, March 14, 2020, at St Peter’s Lutheran Church, 7710 East State Blvd, Fort Wayne, with calling one hour prior. Calling will also be held from 3 to 7pm, Friday, March 13, 2020, at the church. Burial will be in Lakeview Cemetery, Kendallville. Memorial donations may be given to St Peter's Lutheran Church, Fort Wayne.

  • DONATIONS

  • St. Peter's Lutheran Church

Services

  • Calling Friday, March 13, 2020
  • Calling Saturday, March 14, 2020
  • Funeral Service Saturday, March 14, 2020
  • Committal Service Saturday, March 14, 2020

Memories

Marie E. Busch

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Amy Hoffmeier

March 12, 2020

I always enjoyed our Thursday afternoons together with many stories of her growing up in Cleveland and Kendallville. Stories about Butch, their kids, grandkids or her students. Working on her family genealogy or going thru her photo albums with her telling stories about each person as we came across their photo.
Sitting on the back screened porch enjoying the view, watching the birds and the squirrels. The one and only time that I got to hear her sing ...
What a legacy she leaves behind !

Gary Melcher

March 11, 2020

What a sweet lady! One of the best teachers I had during my grade school years at Central Lutheran in New Haven. There are teachers in your life that influence you and stand out. She was one of those in my life

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Biography

Marie Eleanor (Ehlers) Busch (Mickey), 98, was born on June 21, 1921, at Maternity Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio, to John and Bertha (Hausrath) Ehlers. Marie was baptized at St. Paul Lutheran Church in downtown Cleveland, Ohio. Her sponsors were Ed and Pauline (Hausrath) Niemeier. Marie had three siblings: an older sister Doris Ehlers who died in childhood in 1924 in Cleveland, a younger brother John (Jack) Ehlers who died in 2005 in Kendallville, IN, and a younger sister Lois Owen who died in 2018. Mickey enjoyed visiting her sister Lois often in recent years. Mickey had five children: Katherine Schultz (Jerry, deceased 2019) of Amery, WI; Lawrence (Jane) of Austin, TX; and Charles, Theodore (deceased, 2016) (Cindy, deceased 2019), and Robert (Julia) of Ft. Wayne, IN. She had thirteen grandchildren (2 deceased), two step-grandchildren, nine (going on ten) great-grandchildren, and six step-great-grandchildren.
Mickey’s father, John Ehlers, was a parochial school teacher and a church organist. He gave her piano lessons beginning at age seven. Her mother Bertha was a homemaker, she did crochet, and she was a good baker. Mickey moved from Cleveland to Kendallville, Indiana, in 1932 when she was eleven years old and in 6th grade. She attended St. John’s Lutheran School where her father taught school and was also the organist of the St. John’s Lutheran Church. In this church and school Mickey met her future husband, Elsworth Busch. She took cello lessons when she was in 7th grade from Mrs. Kimmel in Kendallville. Mickey attended Kendallville High School graduating in 1939. She played on the high school tennis team, was in plays, and played the cello in the high school orchestra. Mickey went on to Concordia Lutheran College in River Forest, Illinois, from 1939-1942 and received a “3-year diploma” for teaching school. She was the first female cheerleader at this college in 1942. Mickey got her first teaching job at St. John’s Lutheran School Mayfair in Chicago where she taught 2nd grade one year and then 3rd and 4th grades (both at the same time) for three years. During these four years Mickey also took the street car to night school and earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Northwestern University, graduating in 1946. Also while working in Chicago she played her cello in a string trio.
Two months after her graduation, Mickey Ehlers married Elsworth Dale Busch on August 11, 1946, at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Kendallville, Indiana. She had known Elsworth (Butch) in grade school and high school and dated him in her college years. Her husband was a newly ordained pastor, and so he took a ministerial “call” as mission developer to Oregon where together they helped form and serve three new churches in Springfield, Cottage Grove, and the Oak Ridge/West Fir area. Mickey played the organ or the piano for worship and taught Sunday School in these churches. Four children were born in the nine years in Oregon from 1946-1955: Katherine, Lawrence, Charles, and Theodore. In 1955 Elsworth and Mickey moved to Mishawaka, Indiana, where a 4th son Robert was born in 1956. In 1960 the family moved to Ft. Wayne, Indiana, where Elsworth served St. Peter’s Lutheran Church for 26 years until his retirement in 1986. In that year he and Mickey celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary.
During those years in Ft. Wayne, Mickey continued to raise and enjoy her family. She also taught fifth grade at Central Lutheran School in New Haven for five years, earned her Master of Arts in Education degree with a Reading Endorsement in 1968 from St. Francis College in Ft. Wayne, and taught seventh grade developmental and remedial reading for 19 years at Lakeside Jr. High in the Ft. Wayne Public Schools. Mickey retired from teaching in April, 1988, having had a 28-year career. Her dear husband Elsworth, whom she called Butch, died in October, 1988.
Mickey enjoyed various activities in her life. She traveled to both Israel and the Netherlands, each country twice. She traveled in many states in the U.S. on family vacations from the Atlantic to the Pacific. She enjoyed playing the piano and cello. She especially enjoyed singing alto in the Ft. Wayne Philharmonic Chorus for 34 years (1976-2010). She then sang in the Ft. Wayne choir called the Choral Union for two more years. She also enjoyed participating in and serving in St. Peter’s Lutheran Church worship and groups such as the Altar Guild (about 50 years), Tabea Guild, Adult Bible Study, and the Senior Group. Mickey liked to play bridge and attend concerts with friends and family for many years. She took pleasure in conversation and story-telling, listening to classical music, doing crossword puzzles, and reading biographies and other nonfiction works. She liked keeping up with local, state, and world news and especially liked watching the TV game shows Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune. In later years she enjoyed car rides, eating out, vacations and road trips with her son Chuck, and many hours sitting out on the screened-in porch enjoying the backyard view. Mickey enjoyed all family occasions and longtime friends, church friends, and neighbor friends. Mickey was a caring wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt, and friend.

Final Passage of Marie E. Busch

By Charles Busch

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Mom lived a long time

“With long life, I will satisfy him
and (then) show him my salvation.”
Psalm 91:16

Mom lived a long time. Born just after WWI, she was an eyewitness to many major historical events and lived to see the family tree grow a lot of branches. She used to remark from time to time, “Why is it that I keep on living?” and then she would accept that God had his own plan. I think that an active purposeful life, a close walk with her Creator, a lot of love and coming from sturdy German stock had a lot to do with her longevity. (a little feistiness didn’t hurt either) Whenever you asked her how she was doing, even very recently, she would always say “medium”.

Long life can be a blessing and satisfying just as the Lord promised to His children.

“Moreover, when God gives any man wealth and possessions, and enables him to enjoy them, to accept his lot and be happy in his work – this is a gift of God. He seldom reflects on the days of his life, because God keeps him occupied with gladness of heart.”
Ecclesiastes 5:19

Most of the time, as senior citizens, we get to quit our day job, take naps, get discounts, enjoy personal interests, strengthen relationships, enrich our family life, be a blessing to others, help carry other’s burdens, be a mentor and enlarge our scriptural understanding and communion with our Lord. Best of all we get to meet our descendants, give and receive love from them, delight in them, make memories with them and pray for their future after we are no longer around.

Mom loved life

Mom loved life and had a very full and meaningful one. We get a picture of that from her biography that my sister Kathy put together for this occasion. These days I spend a lot of time in my family’s home on Trier Road sorting through all the things that constituted my father and mother’s life and even my grandparent’s life before them. Among those items, there are at least 5 personal scrapbooks and photo albums that my mom put together over the years. My mother had a great enthusiasm and expectation and appreciation of life that is meticulously documented on each page with mementos, cards, news articles, photos, etc.

Mom loved nature, birds, art, music, singing, literature, good grammer, bridge, pigeons, history, travel, the bible, Jesus, St. Peter’s congregation, Oregon, Indiana, Kendallville, Cleveland, Chicago, Fort Wayne, America, Israel and she loved learning and teaching. She taught us all to appreciate these things too.

Mom loved her parents, aunts, uncles, siblings, her husband, her children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren, friends and all the people in the three or four congregations that she and my father ministered to. That’s a lot of people to have interacted with in one lifetime. Even though her interests were varied, her greatest desire in life was always just to be around friends and family as much as possible. Mom might have been just a little bit timid, but at heart she was a total social butterfly.

Days of trouble

Ecclesiastes also talks about the “days of trouble” when at the conclusion of a life well lived, each day becomes a struggle. Gradually, limitations begin to impose themselves on our life style, less independence and more dependence on others, less mobility, physical problems and personal losses, reduced social activity and the lessening of former interests that used to intrigue us and occupy our time. Persistent worries begin to plague us. Acceptance becomes our only option.

Also, if you tarry a long time on this earth, you tend to outlive most of your contemporaries and a profound sense of loss and loneliness can set in. Every year the Christmas list gets a little shorter. Sometimes, you have to leave your beloved home and all your possessions and enter a nursing facility.

This season of time, sometimes referred to as the “final passage”, can be the most toilsome chapter of our entire lives and the most severe test of our faith. Mom was just entering into this time of life when I returned to Fort Wayne in the spring of 2015 and so I have observed this process first hand. Mom’s struggle, as most of you know, was aggravated by encroaching dementia. This disease can rob a person of many things that make up their personality and character. I thank God that mother retained most of her most precious life memories and, though she could be difficult at times, she kept her sweet disposition which was at her core.

Nursing facility

The last half year of mom’s 98 and a half years of life was spent in a nursing facility, a relatively insignificant amount of time when considered against her entire life span. This was a very stressful, troublesome time, yet overall, a meaningful one. We were able to share our mother with others for awhile and many people at the facility came to appreciated her. Mom did not particularly like staying there. (That is an understatement.) She was always ready to go home, bags packed and waiting to leave. She may have even asked some of you for a ride home.

That experience was very much comparable to waiting in a train station, the last stop on the way to your destination. Train stations or bus stations can be cold, drafty, inhospitable, even hostile places. As travelers we often feel weary, uncomfortable, anxious, lonely, and vulnerable. Strangers all around, constant motion and oppressive noise, the workers are loud and curt, hustlers accost us, people intrude on our space, harangue us if we inconvenience them. Our spirits sink; to be buoyed up again by thoughts of friends and family we are about to join. And then the waiting, the interminable idle passing of time, hour by hour.

Yet, we have this promise from God,

“…I will never leave you or forsake you.”
Hebrews 13:5

Occasionally, a friendly helpful face may appear out of the crowd and maybe even someone we know, which is a welcome relief. My own schedule was such that I could not spend a lot of time visiting mom during the day, but the Lord knew mom’s situation and sent a unique lady to be her special friend and to be her “traveling” companion. Mom did not always make friends readily, but Emma Grimes who volunteered to visit her, became very dear to mom.

(Emma, the Busch family expresses its deep gratitude for your love and attention given to our mom over this last year.)

The Power of the Gospel

At the beginning of last week it became clear that mom’s condition had changed and medications were needed to keep her calm and comfortable. Hospice increased their visits and Bob and I began our continual vigil over her. Family gathered around for last visits. Nursing home staff members and other residents stopped by to say goodbye. A few more days went by. I thought maybe mom was lingering on just to enjoy all the company that she was receiving.

We all spoke to her as she lay peacefully on the bed. I told her that a whole lot of people waiting for her in heaven, including Jesus. It seemed as though death and dying were reluctant to relinquish their grasp on mom. Then on Sunday, in the presence of family and her pastor and during our prayers, mom’s spirit was released to her heavenly home. So we were able to declare:

“O death, where is thy sting,
O grave, where is thy victory!”
1 Corinthians 15:55

Her spirit could not be held here any longer and death will not be able to keep her frail body in the grave. Her departure is a joyful thing. Her reunion with all the people of her past an even more joyous one. God gave her the desires of her heart. She got to go “home”, to a much better accommodation than Trier Road. (and she did not have to bring her suitcase) She got to be reunited with the thousands (a “cloud of witnesses”) of people she had known and loved over an entire lifetime.


“Thou shalt come to thy grave in a full age,
like as a shock of corn cometh in in his season.”
Job 5:26

Mom had a hard struggle toward the end, but her faith and the love of others and the power of the Holy Spirit saw her through it. She is doing a lot better than “medium” now. Every Christian death is a vivid demonstration of the power of the gospel. On this occasion, as the body of Christ, we are all encouraged in our faith. Mom’s time on earth is a testimony to God’s love operating though the life of a faithful servant.

For us that remain, God has another promise. As someone once said, “eventually we all become orphans.” But God has said,

“When my father and mother forsake me,
then the Lord will take me up.”
Ps 27:10

The Busch family thanks you all for sharing this day with us. Marie (Mickey) belonged to St. Peters as well.