The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Patricia Jane Jacobson


January 9, 2018

WOODRUFF, Wis. - Patricia Jane Jacobson, 92, of Minocqua, formerly a long-time resident of Wakefield, Mich., died peacefully Friday, Jan. 5, 2018, at Season of Life Hospice House in Woodruff.

Pat was born Feb. 21, 1925, in Two Harbors, Minn., the second daughter of Charles R. and Margaret Jane (Wright) Hemkes.

The family moved to Wakefield in 1927, where her father would come to own several businesses through the years. Pat became a very accomplished pianist and organist. She would walk miles every morning from her home to the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Wakefield to play for mass every morning.

In high school. she was the pianist for a boys' choral group, played a solo classical piano concert from memory, and accompanied her music teacher, who performed opera works. She was a member of a dance band and since she was underage, her parents would drive her to the gigs and sit in the back of the clubs while she played on weekends.

Of course, she was the only woman in the band! Pat graduated from Wakefield High School in 1942 at the age of 17, so she went to work for her dad in the office and driving trucks, making deliveries. She even drove the bulldozer! When she turned 18, she went to Saginaw, Mich., and worked in the records room of St. Mary's Hospital, where her sister, Peg, was training to be a registered nurse. When her dad had a bad accident, she returned home to help her mom run the business and care for her dad.

Pat married John D. Negri Jr. on June 8, 1946, at St. Mary's Catholic Church (later changed to Immaculate Conception Catholic Church). They lived in Wakefield and had a son and two daughters. Pat was a superb cook for large family gatherings, and an excellent seamstress, making all kinds of clothes for her children, others and herself. She was a very loving mother to her three children.

She bowled in a league and played in a poker card club. Being single again, in 1967 she went to work for what became Northwest Independent Insurance Co., in Bessemer, Mich. She eventually became the office manager, but first she was an insurance agent, the first woman to be licensed in the state of Minnesota. Pat was also licensed in Michigan, Wisconsin and North and South Dakota. She and her daughter, Judi, moved to Ironwood in the fall of 1968.

Pat married Clyde (Jake) Jacobson on April, 27, 1996, in the Precious Moments Chapel, Carthage, Mo. Both Clyde and Pat grew up in Plymouth Location. Clyde lived across the street from the Hemkes family and was playmates with Pat and her sisters. After all those years they found each other again!

Pat then retired after almost 30 years in the insurance business. Jake and Pat moved to Minocqua, where she has since lived and made so many friends. She remained very active sewing, playing the piano, learning to use a computer and a tablet, spending time with family and friends, dancing and traveling the country with Jake. For six years she and Jake volunteered at the Howard Young Hospital in Woodruff.

Pat was well liked and loved by those who knew her (and there were many)! She had a very charming personality and a great sense of humor. She was a very kind, generous, giving person who loved to laugh and giggle! Pat was a very attractive woman with a sense for fashion. Two words that describe her are "lady" and "classy"! Her daughter, Judi, used to tell this story. "One Christmas, mom came to visit us by plane. Her plane was late, so late I thought she would be mad. Not her! She got off the plane all dressed in white (including a stylish white hat) holding a bottle of wine saying, 'Guess who had the oldest penny?'"

Pat is survived by her son, John Negri III, Flint, Mich .; and her daughter, Jayne Negri, Nashville, Tenn .; six grandchildren, Lisa (Steve) Davis, Angela (Zach) Regimbal, Cara Negri (Paul Prusakowski), Gina Davis, Alicia (Keith) Miller, and Ben Forslund; seven great-grandchildren, Griffin Liabenow, Natalie and Claire Davis, Cooper and Nia Regimbal, Parker and Gunnar Davis; numerous dear and loving nieces and nephews; and her beloved friends, Kathleen Miljevich and Loralee Radowski.

Pat was predeceased by her parents; husband "Jake" on Sept. 17, 2005; daughter Judith (Judi) Eileen Forslund on Jan. 16, 2016; three sisters, Margaret (Peggy) Wheeler, Eileen Sertich and Alice Nurmi; daughter-in-law, Carol Negri; two nephews, Bill Wheeler and Richard Nurmi; and numerous friends.

The family would like to express their deep appreciation to the caring staff at Ministry Home Care, and Season of Life Hospice Home for their compassionate and professional care for Patricia and the many kindnesses extended to family and friends. A special thank you to Deacon Mike, Peg, Holly and Ginny from Holy Family Catholic Church, and to friend and neighbor Kathy Peka, thank you for your assistance and friendship.

Out of respect for her wishes, cremation has taken place.

Arrangements are to be announced at a later date for a "Celebration of Life" that will be held June 29, 2018, in Wakefield.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Jerald Rocco, owner and manager of Lakeside Memorial Chapel Inc., in Wakefield. Condolences may be expressed online at


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