Valerie M. Dubois, age 91 years, passed away peacefully on Friday, April 3, 2020. She was born June 22, 1928, to the late Wallace and Lucy (Delwiche) Andre. Valerie attended school at Rosiere Graded School and Casco Union High School.
In 1947 she married Walter J. Derenne and became a Belgian farm wife. During the 1950s, Belgian farm wives milked the herd of dairy cows morning and night as well drove tractors and helped during harvest time when needed. The Belgian farm wife was also the homemaker. Mom would make the meals, wash the clothes, plant and harvest a garden, which included canning, freezing or preserving harvested vegetables and fruits. Mom would bake a weekly batch of the best homemade bread ever! Keep in mind, Mom did not have the luxury of hot water nor indoor plumbing. She did not have the luxury of indoor plumbing for the first 30 years of her life; not uncommon for those times. Water came from a spigot in the kitchen and was heated on a stove if one needed hot water, for washing clothes or bathing (done in the round metal tub on the floor in the kitchen). Washing clothes was done on a wringer washer pulled into the kitchen and clothes were hung outside (or inside the house) in all seasons. Mom and Dad built a 3 bedroom all brick house in 1958 and were very proud there was never a mortgage on this house. As was the case in those times, a simple promise to pay as well as a handshake from a local builder was all the collateral needed to build the structure.
The cattle were sold in the mid-1980 and Mom decided she should “get a real job”. No job skills and not knowing how to drive did not deter Mom. She took driving lessons, obtained her drivers’ license, and drove herself to Sturgeon Bay for several years working in a factory there. Mom was very proud of the money she had earned; she kept the first paycheck with her name on it for quite some time! Walter died May 13, 1989. In July 1992, Mom married Melvin Deprey. She moved off the farm to Luxemburg, Wisconsin. She and Melvin bought a home together and began 9 wonderful years of marriage. Melvin would tell her every day, including the day he died how “much he loved her and how happy he was that she married him”. Melvin died August 18, 2001. Mom then married her high school fiancé, Hillarion DuBois, May 16, 2003. Mom and Hal began a 14 year marriage; traveling on bus trips, attending mass at least 3 times a week, and playing cards at several senior centers consumed most of their days. Hal died on August 25, 2017. Mom loved to play cards, especially if she was winning; and while she was able, Mom loved putting puzzles together. Mom had a deep faith in her God and prayer. She was a member of the St. Thomas the Apostle parish community of Sugarbush, Wisconsin.
She is survived by her children Susan (Michael) Pankratz, Steve (Barb) Derenne, Gerald (Diane) Derenne and Jacob Derenne. Valerie is also survived by her loving sister and lifetime beautician, Annette Joniaux; and one sister-in-law Priscilla Baudhuin. Also surviving are nine grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren, daughter-in-law Patricia Derenne, the members of the Melvin Deprey family and members of the Hillarion DuBois family, nieces and nephews.
Proceeding Mom in death in addition to her 3 husbands, were her parents, two sisters, Laverne Baudhuin and Sister Lucy Andre; one brother, Wallace Andre.
Due to the coronavirus restrictions, a private funeral and burial were held.
The family wishes to thank the staffs of Oak Creek Assisted Living and Odd Fellows Nursing Home. Mom’s last residential home was at Allouez Parkside Living Building 2; the family is especially grateful for the wonderful care and love given Mom by Rachael, Wendy, Carmen, Jenny and Tiana. Mom was also cared for by Nicole & Eldy from Heartland Hospice, who are all angels in disguise! God bless all of you!
A memorial fund will be established in the memory and name of Valerie DuBois.
Messages and cards of sympathy may be mailed to: McMahon Funeral Home, P.O. Box 36, Luxemburg, WI 54217. www.mcmahonfh.com