Cover photo for Katherine Elizabeth (Walsh) Bruzek's Obituary
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1929 Katherine 2024

Katherine Elizabeth (Walsh) Bruzek

August 15, 1929 — January 3, 2024

Alexandria

Katherine Elizabeth (Walsh) Bruzek has passed peacefully into the arms of her Lord after a lengthy illness. Though her body faltered several years ago, her spirit and boundless love endured until January 3, 2024.

Born in Armour, S.D. August 15, 1929 to Ellen and Adrian Walsh, Kay was the fourth child in a family of nine.  After several moves, the Walsh family settled in the Alexandria area, where many Walsh and Bruzek descendants remain.

Kay graduated from Alexandria High School shortly after WWII, and at a dance crossed paths with her life companion, Emil Bruzek.  For Emil it was 'love at first sight', but Kay needed a little more time!  They exchanged vows in the summer of 1947, later welcoming Baby Boomers, Linda and Larry. The family began in Alexandria, moved to Oregon, and finally, to Minneapolis where they remained for 35 years. Once Linda and Larry began school, Kay pursued a degree in education at the University of Minnesota. She taught in Anoka-Hennepin schools until her retirement when Kay and Emil returned to Alexandria.

Retirement took some adjustment and Kay was leery of spending hours in a boat fishing (a hobby of walking began when she asked Emil to put her off on shore when her time limit had been reached). She enjoyed fishing but realized she would need new hobbies for retirement.  She tried many but favorites were Bridge, quilting, walking, and golf.  She enjoyed walking the golf course with Emil, but knew they would spend more time together if she actually played the game.  She took lessons, and after 25 years as his occasional "caddie", they now played golf together! Kay and Emil enjoyed golf year-round as they travelled to AZ, TX, and FL, developing deep relationships with other snowbirds.  They continued to meet with their winter friends frequently during the summers until his death in 2009. It is an activity their entire family continues to enjoy.  

When grandsons Peter, Tedd, Casey, and Stuart arrived on the scene, Kay cherished her time with them! Whether it be bedtime stories, hours in her lap reading, or her teaching them to crawl up/down steps, there was always special Grandma time. As the boys grew, she spent time on the golf course with them enjoying walks along the fairway or sharing their chauffeur golf cart service.

Following Emil’s passing, Kay continued to be active playing or walking the golf course with the family. At the age of 83, she travelled by herself to Florida (which was un-nerving for Larry and Linda) to meet friends from Alexandria. In 2014, Linda accompanied her to Ireland to meet family.  A favorite trip was to visit her three grandsons on the West Coast by land or air, to Portland and British Columbia. In 2019, Kay’s last trip was to Vancouver Island for Stu and Megan’s wedding.  In recent years a special joy was having her great-grandson Caleb sit on her lap as they looked through his favorite book.

Kay's greatest struggle came the last years of her life as her normally active body was able to do less and less. Through it all her faith gave her strength and peace, and she never complained.

Kay and Emil found a deeper personal connection with God during the '70s Jesus movement and the Catholic Charismatic movement. We know it is her prayer that family and friends find that peace and strength in God, and meet her and Jesus at the Gates!

A verse we found throughout Kay’s many notes was:

"Therefore, we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."  2 Cor. 4:16-18

Kay was preceded in death by Emil, her parents Ellen and Adrian, brothers Jim, Mark, Bob, Tom, and sister Genevieve.

She is survived by her brothers John, Rollie, and sister Ann; children Linda Simmons, Larry (Reba) Bruzek of Alexandria; grandsons Tedd (Autumn) and Casey Simmons of Portland OR, Peter (Lindsey) Bruzek of Alexandria, Stuart (Megan Galbraith) Bruzek of Vancouver, British Columbia; two great-grandsons Caleb and Colin Bruzek, and many nieces and nephews.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Katherine Elizabeth (Walsh) Bruzek, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Friday, April 12, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

St. Mary s Catholic Church (Alexandria)

420 Irving St, Alexandria, MN 56308

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Celebration of Life

Friday, April 12, 2024

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

St. Mary s Catholic Church (Alexandria)

420 Irving St, Alexandria, MN 56308

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