In Memory

Jane Blaschke (Skemp)

Jane E. (Blaschke) Skemp, 53, of Lake Mary, Fla., and formerly of La Crosse, died suddenly Tuesday, May 17, 2005, in Lake Mary.

She was born Jan. 11, 1952, in La Crosse to Jerry and Betty (Steckel) Blaschke. She was a graduate of Holy Trinity Grade School, Aquinas High School (1970) and UW-L, obtaining her teaching certificate. While attending college, she was able to spend time living and studying in southern France. She was also able to travel throughout Europe. Although it was a wonderful experience, it gave her a greater appreciation of the United States.

After graduation from college and working in retail sales and banking, Jane married Tom Skemp on Aug. 26, 1978. After relocating to Rockford, Ill. Jane taught school in the Rockford Area School District but she made time for frequent weekend and longer summer trips back to the Coulee Region and the Mississippi River. Shortly after the birth of her daughter Katie they moved to Phoenix, Ariz. After a period of adjustment Jane grew to love the desert and enjoyed the metro Phoenix area. Her son Christopher was born in Mesa, Ariz. Since 1986 Jane and her family have called Lake Mary their home.

With her husband Tom, they owned a healthcare management company. She also worked as an administrative assistant in an Orlando, Fla.-based licensed home health agency. No matter where Jane lived, be it the dry desert of the Southwest or the hot humidity of Florida, she always felt the pull of the Mississippi River and La Crosse. She made trips back each summer for camping on the sandbars and boating on the river with all her bothers and sisters and their families.

Jane made friends with everyone in a warm, comfortable way. Her views and opinions were sought out by those who knew her. She had a keen interest in history and politics and was accomplished in leading many late night discussions. She was constantly learning, keeping abreast of the changes in medicine and the healthcare industry. In the past few years she became interested in and read extensively Eastern teachings and philosophies.

Jane will be cherished for her love of family and concern for the welfare of others. A thoughtful and loving woman, Jane believed that being a mother and nurturer were of utmost importance.

She leaves behind her husband Tom Skemp of Lake Mary; her daughter, Katie Skemp of Gainesville, Fla.; and son Christopher Skemp of Lake Mary; her father, Jerry of La Crosse; four sisters, Mary Moore of Onalaska, Ellen Blaschke of La Crosse; Ann (Chris) Carson of Onalaska and Joan Blaschke of La Crosse; five brothers, Bob (Jeanie) of La Crosse, Jim of La Crosse, Jerry (Wendy) of Plymouth, Minn., Joe (Mary) of La Crosse, John of Onalaska; a brother-in-law, Michael Young of West Salem.

She was preceded in death by her mother, Betty, in 2002; and her sister, Barbara Young in 2003.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held May 23 at Holy Trinity Catholic Church, La Crosse, with burial in Gate of Heaven Cemetery.