Rosemary Geiger passed away peacefully in her sleep Jan. 25, 2021, at the age of 102. Rosemary Geiger was born Rosemary Kovaschitz Oct. 9, 1918, at the home of her father, Stephen Kovaschitz’s parents, Stephan (Stefan) and Mary (Maria) Radish Kovaschitz. Her grandparents and her father were immigrants from Vienna, Austria, and Croatia. Her mother’s family were German immigrants. Rosemary was born in Fostoria, Ohio. It was during the flu epidemic, and her mother, CeCilia Kelby Kovaschitz, died seven days after Rosemary was born.
Rosemary was named by her mother before her death, since the name means “remembrance”, she was raised by her dad’s parents in their home. She grew up with the last of her grandparent’s 11 children who still lived in the family home. Over the later years, after her grandparent’s death, four of her uncles and aunts helped raise Rosemary.
Rosemary graduated eighth grade from St. Wendelin Catholic Grade School, a Notre Dame Sisters School in Fostoria. Her first two years of high school were as a boarder at St. Ursula’s Academy in Toledo, Ohio, staffed by the Ursuline nuns. Her summers were spent with her grandparents. During her last two years of high school, she lived with her Uncle John and Aunt June Kovaschitz in Tiffin, Ohio. She graduated from Calvert Catholic High School in 1936.
Rosemary moved to Toledo, Ohio, to live with her Aunt Dolly and worked at the Boss Glove Factory Office. She met Carl Jacob Geiger in Tiffin and married him June 1, 1940, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church. They built a home at 109 Ann Street, and had three children, Susan, Michael, and Dennis. In 1948, they moved to Chehalis, Wash., to build a new home south of the town on Old Highway 99 where they purchased 18 acres of the Yates homestead property. Children, Sean and Sally Ann were born in Chehals.
Rosemary worked as an Avon Lady and at Mary McCrank’s Dinner House. She was an active parishioner at St. Francis Mission on Cowlitz Prairie and St. Joseph’s Parish in Chehalis. She has spent years on the board and working for the Lewis County Food Bank. She also worked on the Lewis County Union District Election Board.
She loved to dance, read, watch musical movies, sew, quilt, visit family and remember good times. She was a life-long devout and faith-filled Roman Catholic who took St. Anthony as her personal intercessor.
Rosemary was preceded in death by her husband, Carl; brother, John; sister, Marcia; and grandson, Matt.
She is survived by brother, Paul Kovaschitz; children, Sue Campbell, Mike (Mary) Geiger, Denny (Linda) Geiger, Sean (Cat) Geiger, and Sally Ann Geiger; grandchildren, Jennifer Campbell-Brown, Stephan Campbell, Darren Geiger, Darci Geiger Twining, Shannon Geiger Pugh, Mark Geiger, Christine Geiger Johnson, Kyle Geiger, Austin Geiger, Angelique Geiger; step-grandchildren, Mike Farmer and Justin Trodahl; great-grandchildren, David and Elizabeth Twining, Skylar and Colton Pugh, Leo Brown, Jack Geiger, Tate and Tucker Johnson, Adeline Bean; a step-great-grandchild, Julie Farmer; and a great-great-grandchild, Barrett Twining.
A graveside inurnment service will take place in the spring at the Cowlitz Mission Cemetery, Toledo, Wash.