Carol Cathryn Francis Honebrink Sawyer was born to Irene and Walter Honebrink on January 15Th 1921.
She died peacefully on October 3rd, 2021. Her 100 years were filled with many events and memories.
An avid Minnesota Gopher fan since 7th grade she never missed a game except for the polio epidemic. She spent Saturday afternoon watching “her boys “with her grandson Patrick as they won. Three years ago, she was visited by the Golden Gophers, and they presented her with an autographed oar so she too could “row the boat”.
She believed you couldn’t claim to be a Minnesotan if you didn’t go to the Great Get Together at least a few times a year. In the early years, her Father was the treasurer of the State Fair and she and her siblings lived on the ground during the run of the fair.
She loved baseball, quoted Shakespeare, playing bridge and poker. She loved riding horses and most particularly, her childhood pony, Jack. She loved the theatre productions of the Academy of Holy Angels where her son, Gregg, is the director.
An educated woman who love learning, Carol attended St. Mark’s Grade School and St. Joseph’s Academy in St. Paul and was a proud graduate of the University of Minnesota (class of 1942) where she majored in Romance Languages and was fluent in French, Spanish and Portuguese. She was active member of Delta Delta Kappa.
A life-long student of history and architecture, she co-authored the book St. Paul’s Historic Summit Avenue. She was particularly fond of the designs of Frank Lloyd Wright.
In 1911, her father built one of the first cabins in what is now White Bear Lake, using a horse and buggy. From then on, White Bear Lake was her summer home. Not a single Independence Day passed without mom surrounded by her family “at the lake”. Today her son Stephen lives on the property and maintains the beach front at her beloved lake. She was at White Bear the week before her death.
However, her first Love was God. Everything flowed from her love and her deeply held belief in her Catholic faith. She loved Daily Mass, praying the Rosary, and holding vigil in the Adoration Chapel at Nativity Parish. She was a member of the 3rd Order of Lay Carmelites.
Her greatest vocation was that of being a wife to Chuck and mother to 7 children (two who died before birth and were baptized in the hospital room.). Nothing made her happier than when she was surrounded by her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Carol is preceded in death by her parents, her husband of 42 years, Charles “Chuck” Sawyer, two children who died in childbirth, Mary Catherine and John Paul Jude, her sisters Lois Healy and Joan Hammerel, and her brother Walter “Bud Honebrink.
She is survived by her brother Roger Honebrink and children, Chuck (Kathy), Steve (Phyllis) Jim, Janet (Pat Houlton), and Gregg; 13 grandchildren, Amy Ludwig (Kevin) Katy, Annie Beach (Thompson), Charlie (Lauren Sweeny), Patrick Houlton (Kellyn), Jack Houlton (Katie), Nate Houlton (Peggy) Ben Houlton (Amanda), Seth Houlton (Valan), Megan Rossman (Bill), Colleen Collado (Guillermo) and Christine Godwin (Ethan Scrivner); and 25 great grandchildren as well as many nieces and nephews.
Visitation is on October 11, 2021, at O’Halloran and Murphy, St Paul from 5-7. Mass of Christian Burial is on Tuesday October 12, 2021, at 10:30 with a one- hour visitation prior at Nativity of our Lord Catholic Church in St. Paul.
The family extends their gratitude to the nursing staff at Cerenity Marion Care Center for their careful and kind attention to our mom.
Memorials preferred to Academy of Holy Angels Theater Department, Cretin High School Scholarship Fund to Donor’s Choice.
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