November 25, 2013 | Vol. 94, No. 277

Irene Marie Nasi

HURLEY, Wis. - Irene Marie Nasi, 86, of Pine Lake in the Town of Oma, passed away peacefully on Monday, Nov.18, 2013, at Villa Maria Health and Rehabilitation Center in Hurley, with loving family members at her side.

The former Irene Traynor was born on Nov. 24, 1926, in New York City, to parents Thomas A. Traynor and Mae Neubert. Irene's first 18 years were spent in Maspeth, Queens, N.Y. She graduated from Grover Cleveland High School in 1944 and was a member of the Arista Honor Society. After graduation at 17 years of age, she worked as a Western Union telephone operator for New York Bell. This was during World War II and she handled many high priority calls, one of the most noted was General Omar Bradley, the U.S. Army field commander in North Africa and Europe, calling the President of the United States. She also worked part-time at the Thomas Bread Company until 1946, at which time she moved to Montreal, Wis. She moved to Hurley in 1953 and then to the Pine Lake cottage in 1987.

Irene married Ero L. Nasi on Feb. 11, 1945, during a ceremony held at St. Stanislaus Kostka Catholic Church in Maspeth, N.Y. It was a war-time wedding and the event was planned in 11 days as Ero was in the Navy and was to be shipped overseas. After the war, they returned to Ero's hometown of Montreal. Family stories of her first years in the Northwoods have already delighted several generations. In 1946, they started Ero Nasi Construction Company and she participated until her retirement in 1985. Later, she worked part-time in the offices of Caring Home Health and Caring Caregivers Inc, retiring again at the age of 81 in 2008. She also sold Avon from 1989-2011.

Irene was a member of St. Mary's Catholic Church in Hurley and its Council of Catholic Women, served as past president of the Hurley Women's Club and Hurley Lionettes, and was a current member of the Oma Women's Club. She skied on the National Ski Patrol for 20 years, two years at White Cap Mountain and 18 years at Big Powderhorn Mountain.

Irene enjoyed downhill and cross country skiing, skating, water skiing, swimming (she was often the first one in and the last one out of the water), boating and camping. She was an avid reader of books, magazines and newspapers, and we will be reading her clipped out articles and recipes for many years to come. She truly enjoyed people of all ages and loved to converse with others on a wide array of topics, such as health, history, fashion, books, movies, current events, travel, business and humorous family and friend stories. She thrived on get-togethers, parties, celebrations and outings with family and friends, but also was totally at peace in the quiet and solitude of her beloved cottage.

Irene is survived by daughters, Norene (Henry) Gilbertson, Hurley, and Debra (Michael) Kraus, Marshfield; a son, John (Joan Donaldson), Pine Lake; daughter-in-law, Ginger Nasi, Hurley; grandchildren; Neil (Brooke) Gilbertson, Saxon, Nick (Jamie) Gilbertson, Minocqua, Holly (Brian) Sanborn, Chippewa Falls, Robyn Nasi (Barney Hinch), Hurley, Cara (Brad) Pinardi, Woodbury, Minn., Westley (Nichole) Nasi, Gile, Monica Nyberg (Matt Steiner), Madison, Taylor Kraus, Madison, and Spencer Kraus, Marshfield; great-grandchildren, Bryce and McKenna Gilbertson, Ty, Saylor and Bodyn Gilbertson, Brenna, Bruce and Olivia Sanborn, Vivian and Marco Pinardi, and Olivia Steiner; a brother, Roy Traynor (Dawn Troyer), Elcho and Wausau; cousin, Jack Susenburger, Herkimer, N.Y.; brothers-in-Iaw, Arne (Donna) Nasi, Ironwood, Mich., Larry Nasi, East Alton, Ill, and George (Verna) Nasi, Pence; sisters-in-law, Ella Stein, Milwaukee, and Beverly Nasi, Montreal; and many very special nieces and nephews.

Preceding her in death besides her parents were her husband, Ero, on Dec. 8, 1988, after 43 years of marriage; a son, Brian T., on April 4, 2004; brothers-in-law, Howard, Donald and Nilo Nasi, and Clarence Stein; and sister-in-law, Betty Traynor.

As per Irene's wishes, cremation has taken place.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Saturday, Nov. 30, at 11 a.m., preceded by visitation beginning at 9 a.m., at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Hurley, with the Rev. Frank Kordek OFM, celebrant. 

Rite of Committal and interment will be in St. Mary's Cemetery, Hurley, in the spring.

Lunch will be served at the Iron Nugget in downtown Hurley immediately following the service.

Arrangements have been entrusted to McKevitt-Patrick Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Ironwood, where online condolences may be expressed at mckevittpatrickfuneralhome.com.

Irene left this newspaper clipping for all of us:

To Those I Love

If I should ever leave you whom I love, 

To go along the silent way, grieve not,

Nor speak of me with tears, but laugh and talk

Of me as if I were beside you, for

Who knows, but that I shall be oftentimes?

I'd come, I'd come, could I but find a way!

But would not tears and grief be barriers?

And when you hear a song I used to sing,

Or see a bird I loved-let not the thought

Of me be sad, for I am loving you

Just as I always have ... You were so good

To me .... So many things to say to you ....

Remember that I did not fear ... Twas

Just leaving you I could not bear to face ....

We cannot see Beyond .... But this I know;

I loved you so-twas heaven here with you!

- Isla Paschal Richards