My Mother’s Obituary

Helen Forbeck with my son Marty and my (then newborn) quadruplets in 2002. 

I’m sure I’ll have more to say about this later, but for now:

My mother’s obituary:

Helen Fink Forbeck of Beloit, Wisconsin, passed away at her home on January 14, 2018, surrounded by her loving family.

Helen was born in Appleton, Wisconsin, on December 7, 1944, and was raised in her family home in Menasha, Wisconsin. She graduated from St. Mary’s High School in Menasha in 1963, and she then attended Marquette University and graduated in 1967 with a bachelor’s degree.

She taught middle school in Milwaukee until she moved to Beloit in 1970, where she was a devoted mother to her four children. She later worked as a job developer at OIC. She was an active member of the Democratic Party and the League of Women Voters for decades, and she served on the Beloit City Council from 1985 to 1991, during which she was elected the first woman president of the City Council. She left the Council to work for US Congressman Les Aspin as his ombudsperson. When he became Secretary of Defense in 1993, she moved to Alexandria, Virginia, to work at the Pentagon for the Department of Defense. She returned to Beloit in 2002 to help with the arrival of her quadruplet grandchildren and spend more time with the rest of her children and grandchildren. In 2003, she opened the Beloit office of US Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin and ran it until her retirement in 2013. She became interested in genealogy many years ago and spent countless hours researching her family’s history. She volunteered regularly at Caritas and spent much of her retirement visiting with her children and grandchildren, playing games (especially multiple-hand solitaire) and doing jigsaw puzzles.

Survivors include her children Matt (Ann) Forbeck of Beloit, Wisconsin; Mark Forbeck of Lake Mills, Wisconsin; and Kim (Todd Dunsirn) Forbeck, and Jody (Nanni Marta) Forbeck of Shorewood, Wisconsin; brothers Tom Fink and John (Sue) Fink and sister Joan (Dick) Kuhn; grandchildren Martin, Patrick, Nicholas, Kenneth, and Helen Forbeck; Savannah and Delaney Forbeck; Murray, Henry, and Leo Dunsirn; and Luke and Matteo Marta, along with several beloved nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her sister and brother-in-law Mary C. (Fink) and Charlie Atchinson; sister-in-law Barbara Fink; nephews Thomas and Gregory Fink; parents Berenice (Murray) Fink and Ray J. Fink; grandparents Mary (Daly) and Martin Murray, and Bridget (Finnerty) and John B. Fink; great-grandparents Winifred (Kelly) and Thomas Murray, Ellen (Hogan) and John Daly, Anna (Lauterbach) and Herman Fink (Vinkenvleugel), and Catherine (Keating) and Thomas Finnerty.

The greatest hope she had for this world as she left it is that our current president leaves office as soon as possible, along with any other bigots, homophobes, and racists. She asked those who support such beliefs to not dare to attend her visitation or funeral.

A memorial service of remembrance for Helen will be at 2:00 p.m. Sunday, January 21, 2018 in the Daley Murphy Wisch & Associates Funeral Home and Crematorium, 2355 Cranston Road, Beloit, WI. Visitation of remembrance will be from 12:00 p.m. until the time of service Sunday in the funeral home.

In lieu of flowers, she requested that donations be made in her name to Caritas Community Resource Center or Beloit Regional Hospice.