Cover photo for Frances Catolica Alewine's Obituary
Frances Catolica Alewine Profile Photo
1931 Frances 2017

Frances Catolica Alewine

December 26, 1931 — July 2, 2017

Frances Catolica Alewine, 85, of Bradenton, Florida, formerly of Houston, Texas and Kalamazoo, Michigan native passed away peacefully Sunday July 2, 2017 in Bradenton. Fran was born December 26, 1931 to the late Victor and Mary (Milan) Catolica Jordan in Kalamazoo. She remained a resident of Kalamazoo/Vicksburg until she married a Southern gentleman, W. Gerald Alewine on August 15, 1967 nearly fifty years ago. Gerald’s career in the paper and steam industry took Gerald, Fran and Todd (her son by marriage to Robert Harrison) to Mobile, Alabama, Monroe, Springhill and New Orleans, Louisiana and finally Houston, Texas where she resided until retiring in Bradenton, Florida. While Fran enjoyed the many places she lived, Kalamazoo remained in her heart and she would return annually for extended visits in the summer with family and friends awaiting her return, most recently to the home she and Gerald built near Gourdneck Lake in Vicksburg. People person, one of a kind, family oriented are a few words used to describe Fran. She learned to cook at a very early age from her grandmother, Frances Catolica. Fran excelled in Italian cooking, Southern cooking and she would try any recipe once. While Gerald liked his sugar cookies just as the recipe instructed, Fran was one to add lemon or any other spice or ingredient she thought might make it taste a bit better, often causing some tense moments in the kitchen. Her family and friends were the grateful recipients of her culinary skills. Thanksgiving, Christmas, birthdays or for no reason at all, found family and friends at the table that she decorated. She set a beautiful table and presentation was always important to her, be it a holiday celebration, picnic or quickly arranged gathering. For many years, she organized the Bayshore Association Spaghetti dinner. In addition to her cooking talents, she was an excellent seamstress, knitter, gardener, organizer, and often could be found remodeling a kitchen, bathroom, laying grout and tile herself. In her spare time, she enjoyed playing cards of any kind, bingo, cribbage by the pool and occasional trips to the casino. She was an avid reader and devoured cookbooks, always looking for something new to try. She also enjoyed fishing and would try anything once. She traveled the world with trips to Italy, India, England, Ireland, Costa Rica and many points in between. She always enjoyed the adventures, but was always thrilled to be home. Left behind to cherish the memories are spouse, W. Gerald Alewine, Bradenton, son R. Todd (Bonnie) Harrison and the “best grandchildren in the world”, Zachary Ryan and Adrienne Marie Harrison of Spring, Texas. Siblings, Joseph (Joyce) Catolica of MI and FL, and Patricia J. (Tim) Dent of Kalamazoo. Four nieces survive her, Tracie, Kelly, Lisa and Chrissy along with many other great nieces and nephews, cousins and friends. She was preceded in death by her parents, brother Frank, nephew Ryan A. Dent, as well as former spouse, Robert Harrison. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Joseph Catholic Church or charity of donor choice. Visitation is Sunday, August 6, 2017 from 6-8PM at Redmond Funeral Home, 4100 S. Westnedge, Kalamazoo. Funeral Memorial Mass will be 11 AM Monday, August 7, 2017 at St. Joseph Catholic Church, 936 Lake St, Kalamazoo with Rev. Msgr. Michael Hazard, Celebrant. Lunch will immediately follow in the Bennett Building next door to the church. All are welcome to come and share fellowship and memories. Private family interment at Mt. Olivet Cemetery, Kalamazoo.
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Service Schedule

Past Services


Sunday, August 6, 2017

6:00 - 8:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Funeral Service

Monday, August 7, 2017

Starts at 1:00 pm (Eastern time)

St. Joseph Catholic Church

936 Lake St, Kalamazoo, MI 49001

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