Corinne Kiefer Celebration of Life, 2pm, Feb 22, 2024

A Celebration of Life will be held on February 22, 2024, at 2 pm at North Port Community Church of Christ in North Port, Florida.


Corinne Amy (Gentner) Kiefer, formerly of Lansing, Michigan, passed away peacefully on December 26, 2023, in Port Charlotte, Florida, with her daughters by her side. Corinne was born August 10, 1929, in Detroit, Michigan, to Fred and Amy Gratz. In 1951 she graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in elementary education and married Leo Gentner that same year. They moved to Lansing, Michigan, where they raised their three daughters in the Delta-Waverly area.

Corinne taught kindergarten for over three decades in the Waverly School District at Windemere Park Elementary and Elmwood Elementary. A famous essay tells us that all you really need to know, you learn in kindergarten, and Corinne taught over 1,700 children all they needed to know. How to share, how to listen to a story, how to wait your turn, how to write your own name, and how to follow the Golden Rule. Every Halloween, Corinne dressed as a friendly witch for her kindergarten classes and for hundreds of former students who visited her home on Halloween night.

In retirement, Corinne and her second husband, Bill Kiefer, moved to La Casa in North Port, Florida, where they enjoyed the sunny weather and made many new friends. Corinne and Bill enjoyed traveling together, including several trips to Europe and Corinne also traveled with her daughters to Canada, Hawaii, and Paris.

She enjoyed gardening, entertaining, crafts of many kinds, especially quilting, and visiting her daughters and grandchildren. Corinne loved dogs her whole life including cocker spaniels as a child and a houseful of barky Schnauzers while her daughters were growing up. Her favorite dog was her last one: Pepe le Pew, a black, “extremely smart” miniature poodle with many friends of his own in Corinne’s neighborhood.

Corinne spent hundreds of hours in retirement working on her beautiful quilts, sewing quilts for all her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren to cherish. She also created cloth dolls, wooden toys, and customized tee shirts for her little great-grandsons as well as making greeting cards which she gave to friends and sold at craft fairs into her ninety-fourth year.

Corinne is survived by her three daughters: Marcie Bovetz (Stan), Laurie Baum (Geoff), and Jill Gentner (Bob Schwary), six grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband Bill and a granddaughter, Betsy.

A Celebration of Life will be held on February 22, 2024, at 2 pm at North Port Community Church of Christ in North Port, Florida. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to North Port Police Officers Assoc. K-9 Team, Attn: Captain Joe Fussell, 4970 City Hall Blvd., North Port, FL 34286. Corinne’s family extends grateful thanks to her friends, especially Izak Kolodny for his loving care of Corinne in her final months.

“Your legacy is every life you’ve touched.”

—–Maya Angelou

Posted online on January 18, 2024

Published in Lansing State Journal