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“Greg, I'm so sorry to have read the news about your mom. She was a wonderful woman and I always remember her fondly. I'm unable to make the trip up...Read More »
1 of 1 | Posted by: Cindy (Matteson) Harwood - MI

Lorine Marie Wittkopp, of Bay City, Michigan, died peacefully on Sunday morning, October 2, 2016, at Arden Courts memory care assisted living home in Bingham Farms, Michigan. She was 92 years old. Visitation will take place on Wednesday, October 5, at Penzien & Steele Funeral Home 608 North Madison Avenue in Bay City (2:00 to 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.), and funeral services will be held on Thursday, October 6, at 11:00 a.m. at Immanuel Lutheran Church on\ Lincoln Street in Bay City.

Lorine Marie Specht was born on June 3, 1924, in Cleghorn, Iowa. The daughter of Henry Jacob Schmidt Specht, who was born in Germany and immigrated to Iowa with his mother in 1883, and Marie Bertha (Kamrath) Specht, whose parents also emigrated from Germany with their families to homesteads in Iowa in the 1880s, Lorine was raised on the Specht family farm near Cleghorn. She graduated from Marcus High School in nearby Marcus, Iowa, and then taught in a one-room country school in rural Marcus.

Lorine married Otto William Wittkopp, who was the son of the Rev. Edward and Magdalene (Schaefer) Wittkopp, on January 12, 1944. After living on several Air Force bases in the United States during the final years of World War II, during which Otto was a pilot trainer, they returned to Iowa, living in Remsen, Keokuk, Sioux City, and finally Carroll, where their three sons were born. In 1961 the family moved to Bay City, Michigan, where Otto was a General Agent with Aid Association for Lutherans (now Thrivent Financial).

In addition to raising her three sons and maintaining their home and gardens on Ninth Street in Bay City, where she lived for almost fifty years, Lorine was actively involved with Immanuel Lutheran Church, including the Ladies Aid and Altar Guild. A musician and vocalist, Lorine served as the organist for several churches in Iowa, was a member of the choir at Immanuel, and was an organizer and board member of the Community Concert Association of Bay City. She also served on the board of Lutheran Child and Family Service of Michigan. Lorine loved to travel and made numerous trips to Europe after her husband Otto passed away in 1979, the year they celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary in Hawaii.

Lorine will be lovingly remembered by her two surviving sons and three daughters-in-law: Richard and Sueann Wittkopp of Denver, Colorado, and Gregory Wittkopp and Dora Apel of Pleasant Ridge, Michigan, and Patricia (Barker) Wittkopp (widow of Roger Wittkopp) of Bay City, Michigan; her four grandchildren: Nathan Wittkopp (and James Babb) of Denver, Colorado; Jered Wittkopp (and Tracy Watson Wittkopp) of Traverse City, Michigan; Miranda Wittkopp of Traverse City, Michigan; and Rachel Apel Wittkopp of Minneapolis, Minnesota; as well as the newest member of her family, her great-granddaughter Ella Marie Wittkopp (b. 2016) of Traverse City.

Lorine was preceded in death by her husband Otto Wittkopp, her son Roger Wittkopp (d. 2015), and her three older sisters and brothers-in-law: Mildred and Chris Wilkens, Esther and Albert Nielsen, and Dorothy and Howard Peavey, all of Marcus, Iowa.

Lorine will be interred next to her husband, Otto Wittkopp, in Floral Gardens Cemetery, in Bay City. Memorials may be sent in her name to Immanuel Lutheran Church, 247 Lincoln Avenue, Bay City, Michigan, 48708.