Waltraud Brigitte "Traudi" (Lyhs) Werner

  • Born: September 25, 1926
  • Died: October 27, 2019
  • Location: Battle Creek, Michigan

Farley Estes Dowdle Funeral Home & Cremation Care

105 Capital Ave NE
Battle Creek, MI 49017

Tel. (269) 962-5527

Tribute & Message From The Family


Waltraud Brigitte "Traudi" (Lyhs) Werner, 93 of Battle Creek died at Calhoun County Medical Care Facility on Sunday, October 27, 2019.

Traudi was born September 25, 1926 in Treuburg, East Prussia, Germany (now Marggrabowa, Poland) to Gottlieb and Maria (Kowalzik) Lyhs. Upon completion of school and apprenticeship training in merchandising in Treuburg, she attended the National School for Sport/Gymnastics at Braunau/Bober, Germany from which she graduated in January 1944 as a Gymnastics Instructor.

With the collapse of the German Army resistance on the eastern front late in 1944, and following the death of her father from pneumonia, she was evacuated to Koenigsberg on the Baltic Sea, and from there made her way on foot, traveling with a cousin, and often under bombardment or fire from Russian planes, to Danzig. After many hardships, they eventually arrived in Western Germany, where they were reunited with Waltraud's aunt. When American forces retreated in August of 1945, and were replaced by Soviet troops, Waltraud and her cousin again fled south and west, and were able to enter what became the American Zone of Occupation. It was here that she met Glenn L. Werner, and they were married, on November 25, 1948. She came with him as a war bride to Battle Creek, where she resided the rest of her life.

Waltraud, barely able to speak English, but unwilling to remain idle, found work with the help of a German-speaking retailer in Battle Creek. Working at the Kresge Company in Battle Creek and Kalamazoo, and later at Shakespeare Company in Kalamazoo, she supported her husband while he attended college and university. Thereafter, she dedicated her life to service as wife, mother and homemaker.

Traudi was preceded in death by Glenn, her husband of 56 years on April 13, 2005. Surviving are a son, Peter "Pete" (Lois) Werner; two daughters, Therese "Terri" (Gerhard) Loewe and Heidi (John) Chmiel all of Battle Creek; seven grandchildren, Jaimee (David J. ) Grimm, Jennifer (Scott) Wright, Benjamin Dobbertien, Michelle Loewe, Carsten Loewe, Stephanie Chmiel, John "Jac" Chmiel; three great-grandchildren, Makenzee Grimm, Mylee Grimm, Alexandra Wright; several nieces, nephews, cousins and their families. In addition to her husband, Glenn, Traudi was also preceded in death by her parents, a sister, Margarete Lyhs and a brother, Kurt Lyhs.

Traudi was a member of Lakeview Baptist Church since 1949, where she was active in Sunday School and several senior groups. She was a PTA member and volunteered as room mother and in the hot lunch program at Lakeview schools, at the Gift Shop at Community Hospital, and more recently at the Food Pantry and the Franklin Center. She enjoyed reading and travel, having toured all of the states except Alaska, and visited many Canadian Provinces, Australia, Mexico and most of the countries of Western Europe.

When we remember Traudi we think of this quote: "The beauty of life does not depend on how happy you are, but rather on how happy others can be because of you." Omi was the beauty in life.

Friends will be received 12:00 – 2:00 p.m. Friday, November 1, 2019 at Farley Estes Dowdle Funeral Home & Cremation Care. A private family service will be officiated by Deacon James Nelson.
Memorial contributions may be made to The Salvation Army or Binder Park Zoo. Personal messages for the family may be placed here at www.farleyestesdowdle.com.