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Beverly Zenke December 5, 1933 - March 3, 2022

Beverly Jean Zenke

89, passed away on March 3. Originally Southsiders from Chicago, Beverly and her late husband, Ron Zenke, raised their five children in the St. Louis area, first living in Florissant, then moving to University City.

With a career calling in nursing, Beverly earned her RN at Rush Presbyterian in Chicago and later in life, a BS in nursing from Maryville University in St. Louis. At the time of her retirement in 1984, she was head nurse of maternity at St. Luke’s Hospital-West.

At Beverly’s core was the heart of an activist. She served on local educational reform committees and as a member of Common Cause and Action Against Apathy, among other notable groups seeking to end racism and promote equality across the St. Louis region. Her strong sense of social justice is sown deeply into her children and grandchildren, and she was exceedingly proud that her work continues through their efforts.

Over the years, Beverly became an expert in genealogy research. She traced her lineage to a Revolutionary War soldier and was a proud Daughters of the American Revolution member. She discovered ancestors in Ireland and Germany and enjoyed linking other families with connections to her own.

In 1984, Beverly and Ron moved to the Washington, D.C., area. There, Ron continued to work in commercial lending while Bev stepped up her passions for cooking, gardening, national politics, and collecting antiques. They later retired to their dream condo along the shore in Virginia Beach for many years before relocating back to St. Louis a year before Ron’s passing in 2018.

Beverly is remembered for her compassion as a loving mother, devoted grandmother and aunt as well as a generous friend.

Beverly is survived by four children: Janet (Bill) Edwards of St. Louis, Missouri; Sheryl (Albert Culp) Zenke of Clifton, Virginia; Eric (Linda) Zenke of Milton, Georgia; and John “Chip” (Elena) Zenke of Annapolis, Maryland. The Zenke’s eldest son, Todd, died in 1990. Beverly is also survived by ten grandchildren, Lauren (Matt) Prost, David (Lindsay Manna, fiancé) Edwards, Sarah Edwards, Anna Edwards, Cadence (Owen) Meeks, Cameron Culp, Carter (Margaret Overton, fiancé) Zenke, Meg Zenke, Enzo Zenke, and Milana Zenke; two great-grandchildren, Avery Zenke and Bodie Prost, and another expected later this spring (Malcom Scott Meeks); and two step great-grandchildren, Landon Prost and Ashton Meeks.

The family requests that anyone wishing to honor Beverly’s legacy can do so by making a donation to the ALS Assn. of St. Louis (1950 Craig Rd, Suite 200, St Louis MO 63146) or to Beyond Housing (6506 Wright Way, Pine Lawn, MO 63121, or online at beyondhousing.org/donate.)

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