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Josephine Veenker, wife of deceased Louis F. Veenker, died Sunday May 29, 2011 shortly after her 94th birthday in Lindon, Utah at her son Lawrence Veenker’s residence. Veenker, a long time resident of June Lake and Bishop, was known for her exemplary service at the June Lake Library, the June Lake Womens Club, the Bishop Women’s Improvement Club, Inyo Friends of Library Oral History Project, and the Presbyterian Church in Bishop.
Veenker was born in Evanston, Ill. in 1917, the last of five children to architect Joseph J. Verplank and Grace Gordon Verplank. She was raised in Gary, Ind. and Santa Monica where her father designed many homes, and where she studied interior design at UCLA. Josephine married Louis Veenker before the beginning of World War II and in 1943 they moved to Mammoth to help run a resort at Lake Mary and manage Forest Service logging operations in the area. In 1956 the Veenkers purchased a summer cabin in June Lake, and summered there up to six months of the year until the mid 1990s, when Jo moved fulltime to Bishop.
Veenker is survived by her three sons, Bruce W. Veenker, Lawrence G. Veenker, and Russell R. Veenker; 13 grandchildren; and more than 20 great- grandchildren.
She was a consummate hostess, a self-taught artist, an accomplished pianist and a voracious learner who delighted in history, music, language, and a good bargain. The loving way she served others and put their feelings above her own was a reflection of her faith in Christ and her desire to be like him.
Graveside services will be held at noon Saturday at the Mono Lake cemetery, with a reception to follow at the Lee Vining Community Center.
In honor of Josephine’s interest in literacy from her years of library service, the family asks that donations be made to Inyo Reach Out and Read in lieu of flowers, or express appreciation to local hospice in her memory instead.
Those who would like to offer condolences may call (760) 873-6453 to speak with her granddaughter, Jody, or simply mail donations to Inyo First 5, 568 W. Line Street, Bishop, CA 93514.