Henrietta Marie Cervenka, age 87, of West, passed away Monday afternoon, October 16, 2006 at Providence Health Center in Waco.
A rosary will be recited 7:00 p.m. Wednesday at the Aderhold Funeral Home Chapel in West by Janice Kaluza. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated 10:00 a.m. Thursday at St. Mary's Catholic Church of the Assumption in West with Rev. Ed Karasek as celebrant. Burial will follow at St. Mary's Cemetery near West.
Miss Cervenka, the eldest of seven children, was born on a farm near the West area to parents, Will J. and Annie (Smajstrla) Cervenka on November 1, 1918. She went to Leggett country school near Hoen and St. Mary's School in West. After graduating from West High School in 1937, she attended the University of Texas in Austin one semester then entered Providence Hospital School of Nursing earning her Registered Nurse Certificate in 1943. Her first employment was in the surgery department at St. David's Hospital in Austin, where she advanced to becoming supervisor of surgery. After eight years she left for Chicago to work at Wesley Memorial hospital for further studies. On returning to Texas she accepted a position in the Cardiac Catherization Laboratory at Hermann Hospital in Houston. After eight years of service there she moved to Waco to be near her ailing mother. She worked at the old Providence Hospital later known as St. Catherine's Center. She left and worked at the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Waco for a number of years until her retirement. Henrietta enjoyed crafts, reading, sewing and collecting authentic costumes. After her retirement, she joined and became a life time member in the Providence Auxiliary and worked as a volunteer at Providence Health Center. She was a former member of St. Louis Catholic Church and Parish Organization in Waco, when transferred to West Rest Haven she became a member of St. Mary's Catholic Church in West, Catholic Family Fraternal of Texas-KJZT #117, & Catholic Daughters of America Court #829. She was a charter member of the McLennan/Hill counties Chapter of Czech Heritage Society of Texas and served as historian for 13 years, then became a director. She was presented the Chapter's Annual Recognition Award in 1999, the Texas Czech Heritage Award in 2003 at the fall state meeting in Rowena, and a Honorary Life Trustee Award recently at their April 23, 2006 meeting. She had a great interest in Czech genealogy and traveled to the Czech Republic to obtain information on her family name roots and traced them as far back as 1853. Her other memberships were Texans of Czech Ancestry, Czech Educational Foundation of Texas, and Czech Ex-Students Association of Texas. She hosted several Czech Ex-change students at Baylor University who were from the Czech Republic. Another interest she had was to preserve and promote the Czechoslovakian tradition by wearing a colorful costume to Czech-Moravian celebrations and festivals. For the past 18 years she coordinated a group who owned Authentic costumes from the Czech Republic to participate in the Parade of Authentic Czech Moravian Slovakian costumes at the Annual Westfest held Labor Day Weekend, and also at out of town Czech festivities. She was a dedicated supporter in preserving and promoting the pride culture and tradition of Texas Czechs.
Her parents, one brother, Wilfred Cervenka, and one niece, Sharon Cervenka, all precede her in death.
Survivors include four sisters, Willa Mae Cervenka of West, Geraldine C. Davidson of Waco, Eugenia C. Surley of Everman and Evelyn Ghelfi and husband Anthony of Long Island, New York; one brother, Clement Cervenka and wife Mildred of Burleson; a sister-in-law, Willie Mae (Mynar) Cervenka of West; and numerous nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
Memorials may be made to St. Mary's Parish Center, St. Louis Catholic Church, Texas Czech Heritage and Cultural Center, P. O. Box 6, La Grange, Texas 78945 or to the charity of your choice.
October 19, 2006, 10 a.m.
St. Mary's Catholic Church of the Assumption
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