Monday, December 9, 2019
6:00 PM to 8:00 PM EST
Heritage Life Story Funeral Homes
Van Strien Creston Chapel
1833 Plainfield Ave., N.E
Grand Rapids, MI 49505
Rosary will be prayed beginning at 7:30 PM
Tuesday, December 10, 2019
11:00 AM EST
St. Alphonsus Catholic church
224 Carrier Street NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49505
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
St. Alphonsus Parish Foundation
224 Carrier NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49505
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Jane Kraemer was a very special daughter, sister, aunt, and friend to many. She had an adventurous spirit and a kind, caring heart. Family and friends savored their time with her as she was known to be the life of the party! Dependable and loyal to any family member or friend in need, Jane’s warm personality was her greatest gift. Gone too soon, she leaves behind many wonderful memories for her family and friends to cherish lovingly in their hearts forever.
Reflecting on the year 1988, it was a time that brought the Iran-Contra Affair scandal which involved the illegal sales of arms in exchange for U.S. hostages. Transformers and the Sega Genesis were widely sold across the nation and the music of George Michael and U2 gained popularity. With the computer age on the rise, Frederick Arthur and Lisa Marie (Schaub) Kraemer welcomed the arrival of their newborn daughter, Jane, on October 14th in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Originally born the third child in the family, the baby sister of an older brother, Robert, and older sister, Irene, her birth brought much joy into the family home. Later, they were joined by their younger brother, Todd, who died as an infant. Kim and Christopher, her step-siblings, later joined her extended family over the years.
Growing up on the northeast side of Grand Rapids, on Coit, Jane lived a typical childhood of the era. Her feisty personality could be seen from a young age where she was known to enjoy getting her way. Known to be a daredevil, she spent much of her time playing outside and running around with her siblings and the neighborhood kids. While attending Palmer Elementary her teachers began to notice a difference in her physical abilities leading to a long series of tests and doctor visits to finally determine that Jane had Friedreich’s Ataxia, a neuromuscular disease. She was formally diagnosed around the age of eight. The family leaned on the support of their faith community of St. Alphonsus Church where they regularly attended and encouraged Jane to live her life fully.
Determined not to let her illness dictate her life, Jane set out to accomplish a wide variety of achievements with the most optimistic outlook. A highlight each year was attending the Muscular Dystrophy Camp. Each year when the camp ended, Jane would literally count down the weeks until the next time! She later became a local ambassador for the MDA. During her high school years at Creston, Jane excelled at math. She also sang in the choir and participated in three school musicals. She loved art and learned to speak French. Her adventurous spirit led her to use her power wheelchair to barrel down Sweet Street Hill and cross Plainfield after school! She admitted in her faith that God was always on her side, as even without her illness the two of them would’ve surely connected over her thrill-seeking and risk-taking side of her personality! Jane was bound to go anywhere, even leaning to take the bus when needed. Widely loved by her peers in high school for her remarkably fearless approach to life, as well as her commitment to her excellence in education, she was the salutatorian her senior year. She earned the most inspirational award and received a standing ovation following the outstanding delivery of her graduation speech!
Following her years at Creston, Jane was excited to enroll at Aquinas College to continue her passion for math and learning. Her professors saw her amazing gifts and supported her determination to even become a published author! Jane had a natural ability for deep thinking allowing her to conceptualize math and help others understand even the most challenging problems. Yet, her physical abilities were becoming her greatest challenges, and she returned to live at home. Jane grew in her patience as she began to need more support from others to manage her illness. Ocean, her Paws with a Cause dog, was a tremendous support to her as well as her deep faith in God.
Jane continued to make friends easily and enjoy sharing so much of herself with others. Each and every summer at the zoo, Jane enjoyed holding the animals on her lap for the visiting children to pet. She also loved volunteering at Vacation Bible School at St. Alphonsus. The first day, kids would look at her as being different from them and by the end of the week, they would gather around her soaking up her bubbly personality and affectionate hugs. Her parents continued to care for her and Jane enjoyed each and every visit with her special nieces and nephews. She enjoyed playing games, especially Skip-Bo and earned a genius level at the popular computer game, Free Cell.
Despite her strong faith and personal relationship with God, her positive approach to everything she did, and the tremendous support from her family and medical professionals, sadly her disease continued to progress. Jane’s final journey was supported through the tender care of her loving family and many special friends. She passed away at home surrounded by their love. May all who knew and loved her reflect her magnetic spirit by helping others, looking for the blessings in life, and savoring the lessons she taught them in such a short amount of time.
Jane Ashley Kraemer, age 31, of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Janes’s work on life is done and she joined her Lord and Savior on December 6, 2019. Jane is survived by her parents, Fred and Lisa Kraemer; brothers Robert and Christopher; sisters, Irene Kraemer, Kim (Carl) Taylor; nieces and nephews Aliana Kraemer, Mariah, Floyd, Freddie, and Romeo Morris, Kevin Knight, Christopher and Brook Stoutjesdyk, Drew and Nolan Kraemer; grandparents Louis and Judith Schaub; aunts and uncles Tom Schaub, Laney (Jerome) Henson, David Schaub, Daniel Schaub, Mary (Harold) Brown, Roger Kraemer; and many friends. Jane was preceded in death by her brother, Todd; and her grandparents, Arthur Kraemer and Jane Kraemer Clark. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Tuesday, December 10 at 11 AM at St Alphonsus Catholic Church. Friends are invited to visit with Janes family on Monday at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home – Van Strien Creston Chapel, 1833 Plainfield Ave NE from 6-8 PM where the rosary will be prayed beginning at 7:30 PM. Friends may also visit at the church on Tuesday beginning at 10 AM. For those who wish, memorial contributions to St. Alphonsus Parish Foundation are appreciated. To share a memory or photo, or to sign her guestbook, visit www.heritagelifestory.com