Rose M. Augustine

By on February 4, 2009

Rose M. Augustine, 85, of Elburn, formerly of Garden Grove, Calif., passed away at Delnor-Community Hospital, Geneva, Tuesday morning, Feb. 3, 2009.

She was born April 22, 1925, the daughter of James and Carmela (Gaston) Garatano in Heilwood, Penn.

She grew up near Alverda, Penn., and attended Alverda High School. After graduating in 1943, Rose worked as one of three secretaries to Henry Ford from 1945 to 1949. One of her gifts in life was the ability to “get along” with anybody and in any situation, a gift that ultimately served her well during her tenure at the Ford Motor Company.

Rose found a home for her heart in John C. Augustine. A neighborhood boy who grew to be soldier, John and Rose corresponded while he was serving in the Army Air Corps, and on his return to civilian life in 1948, Rose and John were wed on May 21, 1949, in Alverda, Penn.

During the next few years, as they began their new life together, John pursued his passion for flying while Rose strove to make their house in Moses Lake, Wash., a home. Following John’s work as a pilot, they moved to Detroit in the early ‘50s and to Garden Grove, Calif., in 1962, where John worked on the Apollo Space Project.

Throughout this time, Rose continued to raise her children while taking cosmetology classes. She eventually opened a small shop in the family garage and worked as a hair dresser through the 1970s. Following John’s death in 1984, Rose made her home in Garden Grove until 1996, when she moved in with her youngest daughter, Janice. Later, in May 2006, she moved to the Midwest to live with her eldest son, Rev. Gary Augustine in Elburn.

Rose was widely known for her hospitality. She loved taking care of people—cooking, cleaning and caring in every way. If she ever came into your home, she would always ask if there was something she could do to help you. At every stage of her life, Rose found ways to care for others even into her last days.

When her children were small, Rose made their clothes herself, and when the girls reached high school, she made their drill team uniforms as well. Service, humility, love and care were the hallmarks of her life. After all was said and done, Rose’s life was her family, and to them she leaves a lifetime of memories and a legacy of love.

In recent years, Rose was a faithful member of the Evangelical Fellowship Church, Elburn. In earlier years, she was president of the CCD program at St. Hedwik Church in Garden Grove, CA.

She now leaves five children and eleven grandchildren: Gary (Pamela) Augustine of Elburn and and their family, Zach (Rachael) Augustine, of Rapid City, S.D., currently a captain in the Air Force, Noah (Melissa) Augustine of Elburn, Hannah (Philip) Stevens Hudsonville, Mich., and Ian Augustine, a 2nd Lt. in the Air Force currently stationed in Columbus, Miss.; Doug Augustine of Ventura County, Calif.; Denise (Kevin) Stone of Portland, Ore., and their family, Andrew, Matthew and Timothy; Deborah (Keith) Myers of Newport Beach, Calif., and their daughter, Kayley Myers (11); Janice (Nathan) Donaldson of Costa Mesa, Calif., and their family, Kenton, Kelsey, Jacob; siblings, Flint (Phyllis) Gaston of Alverda, Penn. and Mary Daugherty of Norwalk, Calif.

She is preceded in death by eight siblings, Helen Manerino, Anthony Gaston, John Gaston, Joe Gaston, Sam Gaston, Vic Gaston and Francis Gaston.

Her visitation and funeral service will be held Tuesday, Feb. 10, 2009, at the Evangelical Fellowship Church, 506 N. Main St., Elburn. Friends may call from 4 to 7:45 p.m. An evening funeral service will begin at 8 p.m. Rose’s son, the Rev. Gary Augustine, will officiate, and interment will follow Wednesday, Feb. 11, at 11:30 a.m.

A memorial has been established in Rose’s name to benefit orphans in Chad and other third-world countries, her church and other favorite charities. Memorial checks may be made to the Rose Augustine Memorial and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119. Tributes and memories may also be forwarded to the family at the same address or through his obituary at