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Obituary: Bernice Rock

As received from Memorial Chapel Funeral and Cremation Service:

Bernice Florence Rock, age 97 of Baraga, MI passed away peacefully on Tuesday, August 9, 2022, at Bayside Village in L’Anse with family by her side.

She was born January 27, 1925, daughter of Emil and Aane (Peterson) Kemppainen on her family’s farm in Elo, MI. She graduated from Doelle High School in 1943 and shortly after, worked at Pesola’s General Store. In the late 1940’s, she moved to Detroit, Michigan to live with her sisters Laila and Mildred. While there, she worked for (her favorite) the candy retailer Fanny Farmer, and Michigan Bell Telephone Company. She then met James (Jim“Rod”) Rock of Pequaming, MI. and they married on March 11, 1950. They moved back to the Upper Peninsula and settled in Baraga in 1955 where they raised their 5 children. She retired in the 1990’s after working for Baraga County Memorial Hospital for several years.

She had many interests, including watching and feeding hummingbirds and deer in her yard. She liked to spend time outdoors, and she had a passion for flowers and caring for her garden. She loved to go berry picking which resulted in making many jars of jam every summer. She enjoyed an active lifestyle for most of her life by going on long walks, especially around the Baraga State Park, and she walked the Mackinac Bridge for Labor Day when in her 70’s. She particularly loved sports, specifically watching her children’s and grandchildren’s live games with her sister Lorraine always by her side. She was an avid Pistons fan and she rarely missed a televised game. She had a palate for butter pecan ice cream and would often go for walks with her grandkids to the nearby A&W (Baraga Drive-In) for a treat. She was proud of her Finnish heritage and would frequently gather at her kitchen table with her sisters to drink coffee, eat sweets, and speak fluent Finnish. She was a master at making the best pasties and she loved to share her family recipe with loved ones. Above all things, she loved her siblings, children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren the most.

She was a strong, independent, and resilient woman who overcame many obstacles in her life. In 1990, she survived open-heart triple bypass surgery and in that same year, beat breast cancer- just to name a couple. All throughout her life, she always maintained a can-do, positive attitude.

Surviving are her children Connie (Alvin) Mueller of Atlantic Mine, MI; Lori (Mark Radke) Morin of Baraga, MI; Carol (Bill) Boever of L’Anse MI. Grandchildren Becky (John) Simmons of Pierre, SD; Lindsay (Eric) Hikade of Herriman, UT; Rachel (Chris) Morin-Brady of Apple Valley MN; Lindsey (Bill) Borland of Milwaukee, WI; Chris Boever of Baraga, MI; Hannah Hawley of Houghton, MI; Jon Boever of Baraga, MI; Elizabeth (Kyle) Morin-Jasmin of Mount Pleasant MI., RJ Morin of Milwaukee, WI; Sara Puuri of Colorado Springs, CO; Carter Puuri of South Range, MI; great-grandchildren, William Borland, Xavier Borland, Leira & Reyna Jasmin, Alex Borland, Luna Hawley, Axel Hawley, Maizie Boever, and many nieces and nephews, and great nieces and nephews.

Preceding her in death are her parents, sister Ruth, sister Dorothy, sister Gladys, brother Russel (Rusty) sister Mildred, sister Laila, sister Lorraine, her daughter Renee Rock Marion and her son Steven Rock.
A funeral service will be held on Friday, August 19th at 2:00 pm at Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Baraga. Visitation will be for one hour prior to the service. Burial will be in the Elo Cemetery at 4 p.m.

To view Bernice’s obituary or to send condolences to the family please visit www.memorialchapel.net.

Memorial Chapel Funeral & Cremation Service – Chassell Chapel is assisting the family with the arrangements.

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