Cover photo for Brenda Sue Tarnow-Basak's Obituary
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1960 Brenda 2022

Brenda Sue Tarnow-Basak

May 30, 1960 — April 25, 2022

Brenda passed away at home on Monday, April 25, 2022. She was born on May 30, 1960 in Kalamazoo, Michigan, daughter of Carl Tarnow Jr. and the late Lillyan (Johnson) Tarnow. She married her high school sweetheart, Boleslaw "Bill" Basak on June 25, 1986. Brenda was an incredibly talented and creative person. She was kind, supportive, passionate, and loyal. She poured her whole self into every endeavor starting with helping to build her family’s catering business. As a talented artist, she graduated with a degree in Interiors and Housing from Western Michigan University; she started her Interior Design career working with residential clients at Koopsen's and Jacobson’s before doing contract interiors for many notable clients in the Southwest Michigan area including Nippondenzo and Upjohn. She later started her own business, Brenda Tarnow Associates, to continue working independently while raising her children. She was devoted to raising her two children, bringing magic to them throughout the year with her creativity, but especially around holidays with elaborate meals, baking and traditions. She passed many of her gardening, culinary and artistic skills on to her children. Brenda was able to embrace her many talents when she returned to work in the family business as a catering chef, baker, and wedding planner. During her years there she treated every client like family, personally seeing to the details of every event. From planning, to the last bite and beyond she went the extra mile to make it perfect. She was dedicated and devoted, and was very sensitive to the needs of those she worked with throughout her life. Her hard work paid off, rejuvenating the business and earning recognition as the highest rated venue on WeddingWire and TheKnot for multiple years. Brenda is survived by her husband, Boleslaw Basak; two children, Alyce (Nick) Machcinski and Nicholas Basak; father, Carl Tarnow Jr.; two brothers; and several nieces and nephews. Services will be held at St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church, where she was a member; followed by entombment at Mt. Olivet Catholic Cemetery. The funeral will be livestreamed and can be viewed at https://www.stcatherinesiena.org/funeralmasses. Memorial donations may be made to Good Days (mygooddays.org), Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Foundation, St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church, Kalamazoo Loaves & Fishes or Catholic Charities: Diocese of Kalamazoo
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