Evelyn Harnischfeger Mahnken Cross, 99, born September 22, 1921 in Brooklyn, New York, passed away October 20, 2020 at Avante in Ocala, Florida.
Evelyn lived a long and wonderful life. Losing her mom at an early age, Evelyn was then raised in an orphanage separated by her one and only sister. She was born in the early 1920s and was a teenager in the 1930s. In 1963, Evelyn married Bill. They spent most of their early lives in New York, where Evelyn had all of her 6 children. She survived losing two sons in their late teens and losing her first granddaughter. Evelyn and Bill eventually moved to Florida in the 1970s. After 14 years together, her husband Bill passed away in 1977.
Evelyn spent most of her time in Ocala, Florida, with a few years in between living with her daughter and son in law in Michigan, Texas, Oklahoma, and then again in Texas. She was there for the birth and early years of both of her granddaughters, Savannah and Sierra. All 10 of her grandchildren were the twinkle in her eye. She enjoyed spending time with family and was able to attend many events for her children and grandchildren. Evelyn enjoyed cooking potatoes in many ways for her family and it was always a favorite part of dinner that her grandchildren enjoyed. In late 2008, Evelyn got to reunite with her sister Marge, a highlight in her life. Evelyn was so excited and happy to have her sister and her family now in her life. This brought her much joy and they communicated often.
Evelyn was always feisty and a go getter. Evelyn worked hard alongside of her husband Bill. Evelyn never sat still, loved her family, and was always willing to lend a helping hand to anyone. In her later years, you could always find her getting out visiting her neighbors and going to Walmart and making friends there. Evelyn could often be seen around the holidays ringing the bell for the Salvation Army and was proud to help them. Evelyn was proud of her independence and lived on her own until she was 95. After a couple of falls and two broken hips, life became harder. Evelyn always wanted to live to 100 to spend time with her family and grandchildren and great grandchildren. We are thankful for her deep love and affection for the 99 years we had. We will miss her sweet smile, her big hugs, and her enthusiasm for life. Heaven waited long enough for us to have all these years. Evelyn’s relationship with Jesus Christ assures us that we will see her in Heaven.
Evelyn was preceded in death by both parents; Wlliam Mahnken, Victor Cross, sons, Michael Laber, Greg Laber, Grandaughter Delilah Koehler, and great grandson Ayden Hart
She is survived by, Sister Marge Butt; Niece Donna (Jon) Curry; Nephew Tom (Kathy) Butt; son, Tyrone William Mahnken (Sheri); daughter, Susan Mahnken Lambreth (Charles); daughter; Cecilia Hart, daughter; Rose Brewton (Skip, deceased); granddaughters, Savannah Lambreth,Sierra (Garrett) Matlock; grandsons, Adam Koehler, Matthew(Janette) Koehler, Daniel (Kara) Koehler, Christopher(Kelly) Donovan, Shaun (Telka) Hart, Jason Hart, Robert Reep, Joseph (Nicole) Reep and 15 Great grandchildren.
A Visitation Gathering will begin 11AM, Tuesday, October 27, 2020 and continue until 1PM at Robert’s Funeral Home, East Chapel, 2739 SE Maricamp Road, Ocala, Florida 34471. Phone (352) 732-9944. Evelyn’s Graveside Blessing will be held at Forest Lawn Memory Gardens at 2PM, with Deacon Dr. Charles Lambreth officiating.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations in Evelyn’s memory to Salvation Army of Ocala, Florida, Gideons and St. Jude’s Hospital.