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Ingrid Garrelts Korn

Apr 22, 2021

I was born in civilian housing on the Wursterheide (Germany) Airbase on October 13, 1941, during an Allied bombing raid. My father had been assigned the job of establishing the base and later decided to join the war effort as a combat soldier. A midwife risked her life by driving through the Airbase by motorbike during the blackness of night, bombs raining down, to help bring me into the world by candlelight. My two older sisters later returned to our hometown of Hildesheim for schooling. Upon the bombing destruction of Hildesheim they had to be moved to nearby Marienrode Priory, that was rented out as a farm. We who had remained at Wursterheide later joined them at Marienrode, where we all were housed in the crowded workers’ quarters building which had no indoor plumbing. We later moved to an apartment in Hildesheim. Like with most children, my father perished in the war, and my mother worked hard to raise and educate 5 kids. I graduated from the Gymnasium (High School) and apprenticed as a milliner. As a young woman, I decided to travel to the U.S. to help my working sister raise her child. I stayed, became a librarian at M.I.T., and magically met Don, my future husband. He tells the story a bit differently, that is, that I came to the U.S. to find him.

Don and I married in 1973 and moved to Minnesota, where he took a job at 3M. We bought a small hobby farm and raised goats, beef, chickens, geese, and pony. My goats won many prizes at shows and awards for quantity of milk production. We helped raise our neighbor’s calves by feeding them the excess goat milk. We moved to Penfield, NY, in 1980, where Don felt we would have a better life (weather and career). We both enjoyed Penfield immensely, and I devoted spare time to my love of gardening and fiber arts, an activity for which I received many awards. In 1993 we bought a vacation home on Sanibel, Island, FL. We then renewed our marriage vows; this time “For Better or Worse, in Sickness and Health, but not in Winter”. I loved my winters on Sanibel, and Don and I were reunited year around when he retired in 1999. Don proved to be a serial failure at retirement, and he was often away on business. But I was “all in” to the beauty of the island until the day I died.

As a newborn who was brought into the world with the chaos of war taking place from overhead, I was oblivious to the terror and fear and carnage going on around me. Seventy eight years later, when I was diagnosed with incurable cancer, I was hoping to go out of this world in the same way I was born – oblivious to the chaos going on in my body. Thanks to the incredible doctors at Moffitt Cancer Center, to my personal physician Dr. Gary Price (and Nurse Kathy), and to Dr. Alan Brown and Dr. Frank Rodriguez and the wonderful team from Hope Hospice, I had a year and a half of better health than I thought I would. While at home my body gave out April 8, 2021, with the soothing intoxication of morphine while I listened to my favorite album, Nana Mouskouri singt die schonsten deutschen Weihnachts Lieder. My hopes came true.

I was pre-deceased by my mother Anneliesa Harms Garrelts, my father Herbert Wilhelm Garrelts, and my sister Eva Garrelts Walker. I am survived by my husband Don Korn, by our beloved dog Luna Indigo Korn, and by my siblings, Barbara Garrelts Talhouni, Claus Dieter Garrelts, and Rotraud Garrelts Schweinberger and their families.

My ashes will be spread at sea in a private ceremony.