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Irene Sobkowiak

June 4, 2021 | 8 comments

October 4,1923-June 1,2021

Irene passed into the presence of her lord and savior, Jesus Christ at the age of 97 on June 1, 2021 at her home with family by her side.

Irene was born to Emma and Joe Riniker in North Buena Vista, Iowa

Irene is survived by 3 siblings: Bob Riniker, Rosemary (Russ) Allen, Jean (Don) McGuire and her children: James Curtis, Cindy(Charles) Wilson; Step children: Diana Gerlach, Lin Sobkowiak, Peggy Jorstad, David Sobkowiak, Mark Sobkowiak, Susan Harkness, Peter Sobkowiak.  30 grandchildren, 45 great grandchildren, and 14 great great grandchildren.

Irene was preceded in death by her husband, James Sobkowiak; her parents, Emma and Joe Riniker; 4 siblings, Marie Wagner, Anna Mae Riley, Ray Riniker, and Earl Riniker.

Irene loved her home, going to the Casino, and playing Euchre with her brother and sisters.

Irene’s family would like to thank the neighbors on each side of the house: John Helrich and John Maxwell

A funeral mass will be held at 11:00 am on Wednesday, June 9, 2021 at St. James the Less Catholic Church, 1032 Caledonia St., La Crosse, WI with visitation from 10:00 am until the time of the mass.  A private family burial will follow.   Luncheon will be at Castaways on French Island, 131 Clinton St.



  1. John and Sheila Helfrich

    As next door neighbors, we got to know both Jim and Irene. They were such a loving and caring couple. We are sure that they will be missed by all who knew them. We are happy to know that Jim and Irene are both reunited once again. Celebrate the fond memories of both of them, knowing that they are together again. Peace be with you.

  2. Amy Jarrett

    Our deepest sympathy to all of you! We loved Irene. She was such a cute lil spit fire and loved talking and playing cards with her! Such a sweet, kind soul! Hugs to you all!

    Amy Jarrett
    Chris Roraff

  3. Susan Carlson

    I will miss Irene very much, as I got to know her over the past 27 years doing her hair.I know she knew how I felt about her ,as we had shared many conversations over the years.My 2:00 appnts. on Thursdays will never be the same…She was the kindest woman I ever met and always had a light sense of humor.Now Jim and Irene are back together once again in Gods presence.Take care Irene…you will never be forgotten.

  4. KG

    Miss you Grandma! Kids say it everyday!

  5. Becky Slocum

    Grandma Irene was the best grandma a girl could ask for. Always happy to see you and made sure you knew you were loved and fed! I’m comforted by the thought of you and grandpa being together again. I will take your love with me grandma.

  6. paulette quain

    Special memories, always, and thank U dear sweet auntie!!! The other day I heard a wonderful, upbeat song on radio and I smiled as I could see U and Jim dancing. I just know everyone in heaven was happy to see U and now we have another special angel in heaven……Still can’t believe Ur gone…….Smiles always and thank U for sharing Ur special earth soul with us.

  7. Cindy and John

    Irene, You will be forever in our hearts. We were blessed with seeing you nearly everyday as we chatted at the fence.I smile as I remember your beautiful smile.”Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” John and Cindy

  8. Jeff Laska

    So sorry we missed this notice! Irene was Jim’s Mom, and I worked with him for over 30 years at G.Heilemans…So sorry for your loss..
    Jeff and Lynette Laska.


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