Jean Marie Berger, 65, of St. Cloud passed away on Wednesday, January 30, 2013, at her home with family by her side after a courageous battle with cancer. Funeral services celebrating her life will be at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, February 9, 2013, at the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints (1420 29th Avenue North, St. Cloud) with visitation beginning at 12 Noon. Bishop Tom Walsh will officiate. Burial will be private at a later date.
Jean was born on January 1, 1948, in Mankato, Minnesota to Donald and Edna (Isakson) Nitzkowski. She graduated from Mankato High School in 1966 and was united in marriage to Donald Berger on December 16, 1967, in Jessenland, Minnesota. They moved to St. Cloud in 1973, and after raising their five children, Jean was a paraprofessional at Washington and Roosevelt Preschools. After retirement, Jean continued to volunteer with the preschool classes at Roosevelt and was fondly known as "Grandma Jean." Jean was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, the St. Cloud Morning Optimist Club, Central MN Noon Optimist Club and the PTA.
Jean enjoyed gardening, walking, volunteering and nature. She was a wildlife advocate.
She is survived by her husband Don of St. Cloud; children, Chris (Pete) Knutson of Sartell, Mike (Holly) of Andover, Bob (Kim) of Avon, Bill (Anne) of Minnetonka, John of St. Cloud; 13 grandchildren; and siblings, Nancy Burger of Mankato, Don (Ilene) Nitzkowski of Woodbury and Tom (Julie) Nitzkowski of Salt Lake City, Utah.
She was preceded in death by her parents; and brother-in-law, Norb Burger.
A special thank you to the staffs of St. Croix Hospice, Health Partners Clinic and the University of Minnesota-Fairview.
Memorials are preferred to the American Cancer Society and the Optimist International Foundation.