Edith Helen (Pavlovics) Love, 82, passed away on November 4 after surviving cancer and heart failure for over a year.
Edith was born in Budapest on March 12, 1939 and lived in Pestszentlőrinc, the city’s 18th district. She was the beloved only child of Marton and Ilona (Helen) Pavlovics. She survived tuberculosis and the ravages of World War II in her first years of childhood to grow into a happy and active child. She was surrounded by a loving and large extended family of grandparents, cousins, aunts, and uncles. Edith attended Szent László Gimnázium through the fall semester of her senior year in 1956. She was an excellent student and won numerous academic awards.
The Hungarian Revolution in October of that year changed her life forever. Facing certain political persecution by the Communists, her father had to leave the country. Edith and her parents fled Budapest on Christmas Eve, hidden in the engine room of a train headed to the border of Austria. There, a farmer met them and showed them the passage to the border. They crawled over a frozen field in a blizzard. The blizzard likely saved their lives, as the field was surrounded by towers manned by snipers. Edith and her parents slept on the floor of an Austrian church and celebrated Mass the next morning on Christmas. She and her parents spent the next six months at refugee camps in Austria.
Supported and sponsored by Lutheran Services and Catholic Charities, Edith and her parents emigrated to Waukesha, Wisconsin. There, they were welcomed by members of her father’s family who had already moved to Waukesha. Edith enrolled at Waukesha High School. In her first class, she met the love of her life, George Love. George and Edith started dating that year. George and his family kindly helped Edith and her parents acclimate to their new home and learn English. George came to realize that the quiet girl he had met was actually talkative and vivacious. Edith took several jobs to help her parents make ends meet and, together, they thrived.
Edith graduated in 1964 from Edgewood College (of the Sacred Heart) in Madison with a degree in elementary education. She taught in Waukesha for ten years at Barstow and Randall elementary schools. That year, she and George were married at First Congregational Church in Waukesha. They made their home in Waukesha, where they raised their daughter, Melissa. Edith was active in many civic organizations and was a longtime member of the Practical Club and Investhers in Waukesha. Edith was fond of volunteering with the Auxiliary of the Waukesha Symphony Orchestra, now the Wisconsin Philharmonic. She was the most dedicated wife, mother, grandmother, and friend. A true servant leader, Edith recognized when people or organizations had a need, and she used her creative talents and skills to help others.
Edith’s special passion was cooking and entertaining. Her desire to love was demonstrated in the food she cooked for family and friends and the hospitality she showed guests. In 2005, she was recognized in a full-page article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, where she discussed her cooking and entertaining and offered favorite recipes.
Edith is survived by her ever-loving husband George, daughter Melissa Love Koenig and son-in-law Jonathan H. Koenig, and her most beloved granddaughter, Olivia.
Her funeral will be held at First Congregational Church, Waukesha, on November 13 at 11:00 a.m. A visitation will be held at the church prior to the funeral starting at 9:00 a.m. Guests are invited to attend a luncheon at the church after the funeral. A burial service will be held that afternoon at Prairie Home Cemetery.
Edith and her family are ever grateful to the UW Cancer Center at ProHealth Care, as well other ProHealth and Froedtert medical care providers, and Zilber Family Hospice, for their extraordinary care.
Donations in Edith’s memory may be made to the Edith H. Love Memorial Scholarship at Edgewood College, the First Congregational Church of Waukesha, or the Wisconsin Philharmonic.