Geraldine L. “Geri” D’Antonio, 86, of Escanaba, passed away peacefully on Friday evening, November 2, 2018 at her home after a long and courageous battle with cancer.
She was born on August 29, 1932 in Escanaba, daughter of Walter and Lillian (Solingy) Bjorkquist.
Geri married John D”Antonio which would have been 60 years ago on January 24, 2019. John came to Escanaba in the 1950’s as an Army recruiter. Geri always quipped, “…and I recruited him”. After their marriage in 1959 in Fort Lewis, Washington, John was sent to Milwaukee, WI as an Army recruiter where the couple resided and had their two daughters. John received orders to Frankfurt, Germany where the family lived for three years. They traveled extensively throughout Europe during that time, making wonderful memories. After returning to the United States, John and Geri settled in Escanaba.
Geri did have several, what she described as “fun jobs” over the years. Out of high school, she worked as a receptionist for radio station WDBC until she became a military wife. Geri also worked as a lunch room monitor at Holy Name Grade School in the 1970’s. (Everyone remembers “Mrs. D”)
Mostly, Geri was known as a well-loved tour guide for Gold Star Tours for almost 16 years. Guiding thousands of people on memorable trips throughout the United States.
Geri also volunteered her time the last several years with the U.P. Honor Flight, greeting veterans and helping at the “Meet and Greet” gathering the night before the flight departures.
From 2012-2018, Geri was the “public relations” person for her daughter’s antique and vintage jewelry store, “Once and Again”. She would greet customers, smile, make great conversation, and was the best duster in the world making the shop shine at all times!
Geri was a wonder wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother and enjoyed spending time with her family. She especially loved “road trips” with her family and often going to Colorado to visit her grandchildren and great grandchildren. Geri also enjoyed dining out, playing her “favorite slot machines”, and was a season ticket holder for Players De Noc for many years. She loved to laugh and have fun and always had a smile for everyone!
She and her smile will be missed by all.
Among survivors include her husband, John of Escanaba; two daughters, Theresa (Jeffrey) Norton of Gladstone and Angela Oberg of Lakewood, CO.; grandchildren, Matthew Oberg of Brighton, CO and Kayla Oberg of Lakewood, CO; two great grandchildren, Haley and Brandon Oberg; and two brothers, Gary and Harold Bjorkquist; and several special nieces and nephews.
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by five siblings.
Visitation will be on Wednesday, November 7th from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the Crawford Funeral Home, 302 S. 13th St., Escanaba. The Mass of Christian Burial will follow at 5 p.m. at St. Joseph and Patrick Church with Rev. Rick Courier officiating.
Entombment will be in the Gardens of Rest Mausoleum.
Celebrations of Geri’s life will continue with a gathering in the summer of 2019. More information will follow.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the family for a charity to be determined at a later date.
The Crawford Funeral Homes are assisting the D’Antonio family.