Verna Wagner


Oct. 12, 1925 - Jan. 18, 2013



Verna Wagner, 87, who was residing in Mesa, Ariz., died Friday, Jan. 18, 2013, in Chandler, Ariz., at the Dobson Home Hospice of the Valley.


Verna was born Oct. 12, 1925, the daughter of Frank and Meta (Gutzman) Leberman. She married John Wagner on July 12, 1947, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Waukesha. He preceded her in death in September 1986. She was also preceded in death by siblings Richard, Walter (Bud),  Frances, Bernice, Janet, Idyell and Grace.


Verna was a people person and liked to help out wherever she could. While she lived in Waukesha she was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church, active in the Ladies Aid Society, frequently assisted the cook in the kitchen of Trinity Lutheran School and participated in other church activities. Verna was a committed volunteer while living in Waukesha. She did intake for the county for Meals on Wheels; she went to various nursing homes with fellow church members to visit with residents; she was involved with the YWCA and the peanuts program; she volunteered at Plowshare, a store in downtown Waukesha which sold  items from Third World countries;  she worked with the Interfaith Senior Program, Retired and Senior Volunteer Program and other programs. Verna also was there to help relatives and friends who needed help and guidance as they aged - much as a social worker would do.


In May 2005 she moved to Mesa, Ariz., to be closer to her daughters. She resided at The Courtyard Towers, a senior living community. While a resident there, she was president of the resident board, she served on the welcoming committee, and she volunteered for any activities that the management sent out requests for help. She had many friends there and played Rummikub and cards, Wii bowling, bingo, pokeno and enjoyed the Packers games on the big-screen TV with her fellow cheeseheads that resided there. Verna loved being part of all the activities at the Towers. Her goal was to make sure all the old and new residents participated in and enjoyed the activities also.


Verna is survived by her daughters, Connie (Roy) Sexton of Chandler, Ariz., and Karey (Ken) DeGrave of Norco, Calif.; her grandchildren, Jereme Gauthier of California, John (Julie) Usher of California, Joshua (Jenny) Gauthier of Australia, Nick DeGrave of California and Brianna DeGrave of Virginia Beach, Va.; also her great-grandchildren, Chase and Elizabeth; her sister, Myrtle Ester of Waukesha; sisters-in-law, Helen Popp of Mesa, Ariz., Frances Dauffenbach and Joyce Leberman; brother-in law, John (Jack) Dauffenbach; and many nieces and nephews.


Cremation was performed by Wyman Cremation & Burial Chapel in Mesa.


In lieu of flowers, please donate to Trinity Lutheran Church, 1052 Whiterock Ave., Waukesha, WI, 53186, or a hospice of your choice.