GLEN ARBOR — Elsie Mae Warnes, 88, of Glen Arbor, passed away Dec. 17, 2013, at her home. Elsie was born on June 8, 1925, in Bohemian Settlement, to the late Frank and Margaret (Kucera) Petrosky.
When Elsie was five she received a kiss from a seven-year-old boy named Gilbert. From that moment on their love for each other grew, and they were married on June 9, 1945. They were married 62 years before Gil passed away in 2007.
During World War II Elsie worked in Pontiac as a secretary for GM. She was going to be a “career girl” before Gil swept her off her feet. She would have to dress up for work and lamented the fact that there were no nylons to be had, except those that Gil would send her back from Europe where he was stationed.
Elsie and Gil ran Warnes Grocery in Glen Arbor. They owned and operated the store for 46 years which proved to be a valuable teaching ground for their children, giving them a strong work ethic, and most importantly a source for putting food on the table. They also ran the dune climb concession for 30 years, selling mouth-watering Dune Stand hot dogs and perfect ice cream cones to locals and tourists alike.
Many area children considered themselves to be “the 13th Warnes,” and Elsie always had extra place settings around the dinner table because, inevitably, one or two extras would show up and be welcomed to a spot on the benches. There was always room in Elsie’s heart for one more.
Elsie’s faith was unshakable, and when times were difficult prayer was her solace. She never complained but lived by, “Say your prayers and put your worries in the hands of God.” She would wonder what anyone could possibly say about her after she was gone — she didn’t do anything. Elsie was faith in action, whether it was treating someone to a free ice cream cone, lending a helping hand or just listening. She asked that we take care of each other and take care of the little ones.