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Kathleen Elizabeth Bredeson, age 84 of Blanchardville, formerly of Rockford, died on Thursday, May 03, 2012 at the Southwest Health Center in Platteville after a long illness. She was born on December 2, 1927 in rural Argyle to Owen Francis & Mazie (Munson) Kelly. As a child Kathleen loved her pony Merry Legs, and loved telling stories about her throughout her life. She attended school at the Ingwell-Watrud rural School, and graduated from the Blanchardville High School in 1945. Kathleen worked for the Blanchardville dentist, Doc Nelson, until she was married on January 7, 1946 at the Immaculate Conception Rectory in Blanchardville to Gustave Bredeson. They moved to Rockford and lived there for all their working years. Kathleen was a home maker, and raised her three children including being a care-giver for her son Bruce who had Cerebral-Palsy for 18 years. A highlight of her life was while Bruce was alive that they entertained the Harlem Globetrotters in their home and had a close relationship with many of the players. Following Bruce's death in 1966 Kathleen dedicated her life to the profession of nursing. She graduated from Rock Valley College and earned her RN degree, retaining her active RN license until the time of her death. Kathleen was passionate about politics, and volunteered for various political officials for years. She was a champion for the underprivileged and working-class of her community. Kathleen loved debating politics with her good friend Don Vick. She was very well-read with an extensive non-fiction library. She was a natural care-giver, taking care of her granddaughter, and great-granddaughter, and was a dedicated sister, watching over her three sisters. Family was very important to her. Gus and Kathleen enjoyed listening to polka music and going to dances. They enjoyed many polka music trips. They made many life-long friends in the polka world. She was proud of her Irish heritage and always celebrated St. Patrick's Day. After the rural school districts consolidated, Kathleen and Gus purchased the Ingwell-Watrud school and entertained many family, friends, and former students there throughout the years. To this day the chalkboard still has their names and touches on it. Kathleen and Gus moved to Blanchardville in 2006 during their retirement years.
Kathleen is survived by her husband, Gustave Bredeson of Blanchardville; two children, JoAnn Meade of Blanchardville, and Byron (Diane) Bredeson of Kimberling City, Missouri; three grandchildren, Heidi Meade of Cherry Valley, Illinois, Kristi (Glen White) Bredeson of Wichita, Kansas, and Ryan (Candice) Bredeson of Olympia, Washington; and four great-grandchildren, Bernadette Rotello, Kahlil and Caiyan Bredeson and Karlie White. She was preceded in death by her parents, her son Bruce, three sisters, May Schiesser, Lucile Hefty and Colleen Swiggum, and three brothers, Alvin, Owen and John Kelly.
A visitation will be held on Monday, May 7, 2012 from 2:00 until 6:00 PM at the Saether Funeral Home in Blanchardville, and also for one hour, from 10:00 AM until the time of service on Tuesday. Funeral services will be held on Tuesday, May 8, 2012 at 11:00 AM at the Saether Funeral home in Blanchardville. Rev. Steve Kottke of the Grace Lutheran Church in Dodgeville will officiate. Burial will be in the Graceland Cemetery in Blanchardville. Online memories and condolences can be shared with the family at www.saetherfuneralhome.com.
The family would like to thank the Upland Hills Home Health and Southwest Health Center Hospice staff for their support and care of Kathleen through her illness.