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home : obituaries : obituaries August 19, 2017

4/11/2013 8:00:00 AM
Virginia L. Rauschke
Sept. 1, 1920 - April 10, 2013
Lorene Rauschke
Lorene Rauschke

Virginia Lorene Rauschke, 92, Rochester, passed away at 7:49 a.m. Wednesday, April 10, 2013, at her residence.

Lorene was born on Sept. 1, 1920, to Boyd and Eleonora (Hanson) Peterson on a farm near Rochester.

After graduating from Rochester High School in 1938, she moved to Bloomington, Ill., where she worked for State Farm Insurance Co. at their corporate office. It was in Bloomington that she met and fell in love with Charles H. Rauschke. The couple married on Easter Sunday, April 13, 1941, in the Peterson home.

When World War II broke out, Chuck enlisted and served in the European Theater. Lorene moved home with her parents and worked for her dad, Boyd Peterson, in his State Farm office. She also worked at the Farmers and Merchants Bank. It was during that time that Chuck and Lorene's daughter, Susan, was born.

When Chuck came home from the war, he became a State Farm agent, taking over for Boyd. He and Lorene ran that State Farm agency for 50 years.

Lorene was a lifelong, active member of the First Christian Church of Rochester. She was a Sunday school teacher, Bible school teacher and an active member of the Christian Women's Fellowship, serving two terms as Area 4 coordinator. Lorene also served as deaconess, a trustee, church clerk, elder, chairman of the board and president of the CWF. She and Chuck also sang in the church choir for years.

She was an active member of the Beta Mu Chapter of Tri Kappa, and a charter member of the Beta Associate chapter of Tri Kappa. Lorene served as president of the Junior Woman's Club, advisor of the Rainbow Girls and as a Brownie and 4-H leader. She was active in the Northern Indiana Community Foundation and served on the board of directors of the Farmers and Merchants Bank, taking over the position that her father and then her mother had served in for many years.

When Susan was a senior in high school, the Rauschkes became active in AFS, hosting an AFS scholar from New Zealand for a year. Barbara Chamber Mitchell became their second daughter and a sister to Susan. The relationship between both families has lasted a lifetime.

Lorene and Chuck were known for their warm and gracious hospitality, which they extended to family, friends and even strangers. Their home on the north shore of Lake Manitou was a favorite gathering place for their extended family. Their nieces, nephews and grandchildren all treasure their memories of being with grandma and grandpa or uncle Chuck and aunt Lorene in Rochester on the lake!

Lorene loved to travel, read, do needlework, garden, play bridge and meet new people. She treasured her friends, many of whom she had known most of her life.

She is survived by her daughter, Susan Rauschke Clausen and son-in-law Edward L. Clausen, Highland; grandson, Jeffrey C. and wife Lynn Clausen, Oswego, Ill.; granddaughter, Beth Ann Clausen Chudy and husband Peter Chudy, Libertyville, Ill.; six great-grandchildren, David Clausen, Brenna Clausen, Annalese Chudy, Leah Chudy, Michael Chudy and Thomas Chudy; sister, Selena Thacker, Indianapolis; and nine nieces and nephews and their families.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Charles in 1990; her parents; sisters, Lucyanna Hitch and husband Oliver Hitch, and Fritzie Habig Brown and husband Michael Habig; brothers-in-law, Bill Rauschke and wife Elaine, Paul Rauschke and wife Maxine and Milton Thacker.

The family wishes to thank Wynnfield Crossing and their staff, her loving caregivers, Shelly Gibson, Denise Coffing and Alysse Sweet, and Hope Hospice for all of the wonderful care they have given to Lorene.

A celebration of Lorene's life will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, April 13, 2013 at First Christian Church, Rochester, with Rev. Mike VanHeyningen officiating.

Friends may call from 9 a.m. until funeral time Saturday at the church.

Burial will be in the IOOF Cemetery, Rochester.

Memorial contributions may be made to the First Christian Church or to Hope Hospice of Fulton County.

Arrangements are by Zimmerman Bros. Funeral Home, Rochester.

Online condolences may be expressed at

Reader Comments

Posted: Friday, May 31, 2013
Article comment by: Dr. Judy Knapp Davoust

I remember your mother so well. Her office was right across the street from my dad's in the Knapp Building. When my mother died when I was in high school, your mom was so gracious and kind. Your dad always asked if there was something I needed. What great and Godly people. You are their blessing and their true legacy. I am so sorry that they are gone. Judy Knapp Davoust

Posted: Saturday, April 20, 2013
Article comment by: Susan Allen McCrandall


I'm so sorry about the death of your mother. I remember her elegance and kindness well.

Posted: Sunday, April 14, 2013
Article comment by: Joetta Blackwood duncan

What a great lady Lorene was. Have alot of fond memories of the whole family. My Dad was the minister for 10 years at the First Christian Church during the 40's to 1953. Chuck& Lorene were friends to my Mom & Dad & know that they missed them after we left Rochester. You have a family that everyone knew & appreciated. God bless all of you.

Posted: Friday, April 12, 2013
Article comment by: Ruthann (Bowers) Ravencroft

I have known Lorene my whole life. She was the definition of a lady. She always had a smile and I will remember her always.

Posted: Thursday, April 11, 2013
Article comment by: Larry Knauff

To the family and friends of Lorene Rauschke. Please accept our heartfelt condolences on the loss of your loved one. Lorene and Chuck were dear friends of our late parents, Gerald and Joanna Knauff.

Geraldine Knauff Coy, Spring, TX
Larry Knauff, League City, TX
Jerry Knauff, Cypress, TX

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