Jeannine Marie (Collins) Kelsey, 54, of Sturgeon Bay was called Home to be with the Lord and was reunited with her husband, Mike, late Sunday evening, April 25, 2021 at St. Vincent Hospital in Green Bay.
She was born May 13, 1966 in Green Bay, the daughter of Irvin “Irv” Carl Collins and Saundra Lee Ann (Vanden Branden) Collins. Jeannine grew up in Green Bay for the first thirteen years of her life. She attended Edison Middle School and St. Philip the Apostle Parish where she received the sacraments of Holy baptism, first communion, and confirmation. In 1979, Jeannine’s family moved to Sturgeon Bay. She went on to attend Sturgeon Bay High School and graduated with the class of 1984. Just a few months later, Jeannine was united in marriage to Martin “Mike” Cyrus Kelsey III on August 4, 1984 at Bay View Lutheran Church in Sturgeon Bay. Together, they owned and operated The Boathouse in Racine in the late 1980s. Upon their return home to Sturgeon Bay in 1989, they, along with other family in the area, formed the “Bay Shore Mafia” and enjoyed sunset meetings, toasting the day’s (God’s) blessing with a glass of bourbon (Mike’s favorite). Jeannine and Mike owned and operated Oliver Station in Sturgeon Bay.
Jeannine’s career in healthcare began in teenage years when she worked as a pharmacy assistant at (the former) Greg Rhode’s Pharmacy (which eventually became Bayside Pharmacy). She went on to study nursing at Bellin College in Green Bay in 1993 and graduated in 1997. Jeannine initially worked at St. Vincent Hospital as a ward prior to becoming a nurse, then cared for patients as an Emergency Room Nurse until 2001. She went to work for Door County Memorial Hospital back home in Sturgeon Bay in 2002 for a short time before continuing to raise her family. As her children grew up, Jeannine went back to work at Door County Medical Center in 2015 until 2020. She never stopped working for the hospital despite her (medical) treatments. Jeannine enrolled in the nurse practitioner program through Purdue University in Indiana in 2019.
Jeannine had a passion for dance, which began as a child and flourished as a member of the Ballet Company of Green Bay. She performed the lead role of Clara between the ages of 17 and 18. Jeannine liked teaching dance, Zoomba, and other classes at the Door County YMCA. She started teaching there in 1992 and eventually earned her professional trainer certification.
Jeannine volunteered with the United Way of Door County.
She and Mike and their family were active members of St. Joseph Parish in Sturgeon Bay, which they loved so much. Jeannine joined her family in helping at the church Fish Fry, served as a eucharistic minister, and also on mission trips. She also helped with the with Scrip program at church. Jeannine had quite a collection of Rosaries from over years and was comforted by her faith throughout her life. She enjoyed visiting the National Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help in Champion, and the time she spent there brought her peace, even in the most trying of times with her (and Mike’s) medical battles. Jeannine never complained once through it all, nor did she ask (God), “Why me?”.
Her children were her world and always came first. Jeannine loved them so much. She looked forward to traveling with the kids to Captiva, FL, but just cherished being their mother, taking care of them, and cooking for them. Jeannine took pride in homemade gifts (from the heart), some of her most notable being her spaghetti sauce and jello.
No matter how high the (medical) mountain for her (and Mike) appeared, she never wavered in her perseverance and devotion to her family. Jeannine and Mike were blessed with over 35 years of marriage. Mike passed away January 4, 2020.
Jeannine’s love will live on in the hearts of her children, Martin (Tiffany), Palmer, Henry, Arthur, Walter, Merrill, and Shelby Kelsey; granddaughters, Evelynn and Eleanor Kelsey; mother, Saundra Collins of Champion; brothers, Steve (Michelle) and Scott Collins, both of Green Bay; mother-in-law, Sheila Turner of Sturgeon Bay; siblings-in-law, Beatrice (Larry) Stein of Windermere, FL, Barbara (Mark) McIntire of Sartell, MN, Peggy (Mike Teich) Kelsey of Whitefish Bay, WI, Brian (Philip Berndt) Kelsey of Fish Creek, Kathryn Turner of Los Angeles, CA, and Elizabeth Kelsey of Portland, OR; stepmother-in-law, Margaret Kelsey of Portland, OR; stepsiblings-in-law, Gary (Linda) Mihaley of South Salem, NY and James Mihaley of Los Angeles, CA; nieces, nephews, and other relatives; and many dear friends.
She was preceded in death by her father, Irv Collins; husband; Mike; father-in-law, Martin C. Kelsey, Jr.; stepfather, Scotty Turner; and other relatives.
Jeannine’s life will be honored with a Mass of Resurrection celebrated at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 1, 2021 at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Sturgeon Bay with Fr. Robert Stegmann as celebrant.
The Mass will be livestreamed via the “Huehns Funeral Home, Inc. & Door County Crematory LLC” Facebook page (www.facebook.com/
Jeannine will be laid to rest with her husband, Mike, in the Bayside Cemetery columbarium at a later date.
Visitation for family and friends will be held after 4:00 p.m. on Friday, April 30, 2021 at Huehns Funeral Home, Sturgeon Bay, 1414 Michigan Street, Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235 and continue on Saturday at St. Joseph Catholic Church, 110 N. 5th Avenue, Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235 from 10:00 a.m. until 10: 45 a.m.
Those attending the visitations and/or Mass are to wear face masks and maintain social distancing. Chapel occupancy limitations will be in place during the visitation at the funeral home on Friday.
Memorials may be given in Jeannine’s name for the Kelsey Children’s Fund at Nicolet National Bank, 236 N. 4th Ave., Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235.
“Our family would like to express our heartfelt thanks to the staffs of Door County Cancer Center for the wonderful and compassionate care given to our mother and also to all of our friends and fellow community members for all of your prayers and support.”
Expressions of sympathy, memories, and photos of Jeannine may be shared with her family through her tribute page at www.huehnsfuneralhome.com.