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Sharon Marie Dykstra (nee DeYoung) went home to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ May 20, 2023. She was born November 14, 1935 in Friesland, Wisconsin to Walter and Dorothy DeYoung.
Her earliest memory was sipping warm fresh milk from a tin cup while her father was milking cows. She graduated from Cambria High School in 1953, where she met her precious Chuck. They dated in High School and were married December 17, 1954. This was while she was in Madison at Methodist Hospital School of Nursing and Chuck was in the Army stationed at Fort Knox, KY. They eventually were able to live in the same place while being married (novel idea!) when Sharon moved to Kentucky and Chuck finished out his Army service.
They welcomed their first daughter, Kim while in KY and later moved back to Madison so Sharon could finish her nurse’s training. There, they were overjoyed to have a second daughter, Julie, then move to Green Bay so Chuck could go to Barber School. Sharon worked at Bellin Hospital (somehow) and the couple moved to Cambria where Chuck bought the Barber shop and Sharon worked at Lutheran Hospital in Beaver Dam. The family joyfully grew again with their third daughter, Linda and then fourth daughter, Amy.
Throughout Sharon’s life she was known as an excellent nurse. There were many times someone knocked on her door at home and asked about a medical condition or advice on an injury and on occasion, Sharon would drive them to the ER herself. She even came upon a serious car accident near Cambria, helped with first aid, rode in the ambulance and helped a man survive. She worked as a school nurse in Cambria Friesland Schools for over 30 years, as a public health nurse in the migrant program, and as a nurse educator. She taught a class for High School students that inspired many to become nurses (like daughter Linda) and other health care professionals; some of those same nurses would care for her in her last days at Wyocena Nursing Home.
Sharon was a generous person, often having guests in their home, called “the elastic house” by her family because they could always fit one more person around the huge table. Many a time you would hear Sharon playing the piano and her family all around singing hymns. She was a long-time member of the American Legion Auxiliary, she was a true patriot. Sharon was passionate about protecting the most vulnerable – the unborn. She marched in Washington DC in the March for Life twice. Sharon sold Christian books for a time through Successful Living and was an instructor for Crossroad Bible Institute, mentoring inmates in the Bible for many years.
The best thing about Sharon wasn’t her intelligence, her nursing skills and her love for family and friends, as impressive as those were, it was her love and devotion to Jesus. She lived life in light of eternity. She loved God’s Word and her church community. She gave everything she had in loving her husband Chuck, her parents, siblings, children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Sharon kept in close touch with her nursing classmates, with annual camping trips and many letters. Her sweet spirit is reflected in all who knew her and were loved by her. Sharon was full of faith and love, and we rejoice that her faith became sight when she entered heaven.
She is survived by sisters, June (Fred) Vorlop and Donna (John) McLeod; daughters, Kim (Manley), son-in-law Dennis Wendt, Linda (Brooks Berg), Amy (Bryan Kemink); grandchildren: Justin (Liz) Manley, Dillon Manley, Dana Wendt, Jeffry (Heather) Wendt, Lindsay Wendt, Carter (Amanda) Berg, Andrew Berg, Leah Kemink, Brendon (Jessica) Kemink, Jocelyn (Ashton) DeMaster, Bryce (Jenna) Kemink, Gavin (Samantha) Kemink, Brailyn Kemink, MaKenna Kemink, Katie Kemink and 13 great grandchildren. Sharon was preceded in death by her husband of 67 years, Charles (Chuck); daughter Julie (Wendt); brother Mark DeYoung and parents Walter and Dorothy DeYoung.
Funeral service will be held Friday, June 2 at 1 PM at Grace Presbyterian Church in Pardeeville with Rev. Chuck Walton officiating. Interment will follow at Rosedale Cemetery. Visitation will be held from 11 AM until the time of service at the church Friday.