Marie B. (Lien) Kabat, beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister, mentor and friend passed away on December 28, 2017 with her family at her side.
Marie was born to Edward and Gertrude (Stafne) Lien in Prairie Farm, Wisconsin on September 27, 1918. The second eldest of eight children, she grew up in Rib Lake, WI and was a graduate of Rib Lake High School. She pursued a college education at UW-La Crosse, then known as La Crosse State Teachers College, receiving a Bachelor of Science degree. While in college, Marie was editor of The Raquet, the college newspaper and belonged to Sigma Lambda Sigma, a scholastic sorority.
Marie married Fred R. Kabat at Holy Trinity Catholic Church, they celebrated 62 years of marriage before Fred’s passing in 2001. Marie was a proud homemaker creating many of her own fashions and décor with her sewing and artistic skills. Marie and Fred owned and operated two A&W Root Beer stands, the first in Spencer, Iowa and then a second one in La Crosse on the Causeway. After her children were in school, she went back to teaching, her true passion. Marie taught for a short time in the La Crosse School District, Blessed Sacrament School and then taught for 23 years at Cathedral School. A true inspiration to all those who knew her, Marie’s dedication and devotion to her many students was always evident, especially when she would meet these students in the later years. After her retirement, Marie volunteered at Mayo Clinic Health System and the Western Technical College English as a Second Language Program. She served several years as a prayer partner at St. Rose Convent and was a member of the New Life Choir at Mother Mary of the Church. Marie was a 50+ year member of the Catholic Daughters of America at one time holding the position of Grand Regent. She always held great respect for this organization and all the good they accomplished.
To her family, Marie left a legacy of love and the gifts of learning, respecting others, an expectation to do our best and carry joy in our hearts. We will forever be grateful for these gifts from her and the legacies we are left. She will be forever missed, always cherished and loved.
Marie is survived by a daughter, Leslie (Gene) Shumann of La Crosse, WI and a son Jeffrey Kabat of Merrimack, NH; four grandchildren, Todd Vander Velde of Chicago, IL, Kate (Chris) Nisbet of Middleton, WI, Carrie (Christian Kalmar) Kabat of San Francisco, CA, and Jaclyn (Brian) Hieken, of Bedford, NH; three great- grandchildren, Alex, William and Olivia Nisbet; and many nieces, nephews and very dear friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her seven siblings, cherished husband Fred, and beloved daughter, Judith Ann.
Marie was most proud of her Norwegian heritage, including a trip to Norway in her many travels. She was delighted with her two Norwegian kubbestools which she helped create and carve.
We would like to thank the physicians and staff of Mayo Clinic Health System, especially Dr. T. Scott Cunningham, Karen Voight, RN, the 9th floor nursing staff and all those who cared for Marie in her final days. We would also like to thank many of Marie’s faithful friends, especially neighbors Lee and Lorie Peterson. Marie’s door was always open and the coffee was always on, ‘stop over for a cup,’ was a phrase she used often.
A Mass of Christian burial will be held on Saturday, January 6th, 2018 at 10:30 AM at St. Joseph the Workman Cathedral, 530 Main Street, La Crosse. A visitation will be held on Friday, January 5th, 2018 from 4:00 – 7:00 PM at Blaschke – Schneider Funeral Home, 1501 West Avenue So., La Crosse.
Memorials may be made to the UW La Crosse Foundation, for an education scholarship in Marie’s name.
I’d like the memory of me to be a happy one.
I’d like to leave an afterglow of smiles when life is done.
I’d like to leave an echo whispering softly down the ways,
Of happy times and laughing times and bright and sunny days.
I’d like the tears of those who grieve, to dry before the sun
Of happy memories that I leave when life is done.
Afterglow, author unknown.