Constance Ann Koerin, 73, Leavenworth, died Monday, May 10, 2021, at home with her loving husband by her side.
She entered this world April 8, 1948, the first child of Anthony and Elizabeth (Michael) Hiller.
Constance grew up on a farm just outside of Bellwood, Nebraska, where she helped tend to the garden, animals and other humans. Connie, as most knew her, was the oldest of nine children. She served as a role model, a nurturing caretaker, a confidante, a counselor and a mentor to her younger siblings.
Connie was an excellent student and flourished in her academic pursuits. She completed her bachelor’s degree in chemistry at Creighton University. She went on to pursue a nursing degree and worked in many specialties throughout her career including pulmonary, hospice and cardiac rehab care.
Daughter, sister and nurse were just some of the roles that Connie played during her lifetime. She added spouse to the list on May 4, 1996, when she married Philip Alan Koerin at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Connie and Phil walked many miles together on volksmarches, which is how they first met. They discovered many shared interests over time including travel, good food and good company. The two celebrated their 25th anniversary this year.
Connie was a lover of books, gardening, cats and family. She was independent, strong and very capable. She had many dear friends. One of Connie’s greatest exploits was hiking from the rim of the Grand Canyon to the river and back out again with a group of those friends. As Connie’s health declined, she appreciated the support of friends, family and her community.
While Connie did not have children of her own, she played the role of “cool aunt” to her nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews long before that was even a thing. Whether it was reading a story, watching a sporting event, listening to a concert or going on a fishing trip, Connie was always up for an adventure. She had a way of making you feel special and seen. And in great acts of noble courage, she let her siblings’ children pile into her hatchback or her mini-van and helped create joyful memories for them.
Connie loved dessert and one of her greatest hopes was that there were sweets in heaven. May you rest in sweet peace – dear wife, sister, aunt, great aunt and friend.
She is survived by her husband, Philip Koerin, Leavenworth, Kansas; sisters, Kate Shoemaker, Yankton, South Dakota, Jeanne Blaalid, Mitchell, South Dakota, Beth Svoboda, St. Paul, Nebraska, Peg Hiller, Mitchell, South Dakota, Lori Meusch, Bellwood, Nebraska, and Janet Delgado, Baldwin City, Kansas; a brother, Chuck Hiller, Lincoln, Nebraska; many nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews and her close friends, Linda Enlow, Paula Musgrave and Kirsten McBride.
Connie is preceded in death by her parents.
A visitation will be from 5:30-7 p.m. Friday, May 21, 2021, at R.L. Leintz Funeral Home. A funeral Mass and burial will be held at the Mariette Church in Nebraska. Memorials may be made to the Leukemia Society in her memory.
Posted online on May 17, 2021