Elizabeth (Betty) Jean Regner, 76, Kenosha, WI, passed away peacefully on Monday, August 29, 2023, at Saint Catherine’s Hospital. Betty was born in Chicago, IL on November 12, 1946, to the late Frederick and Annamae Giltmier.
Betty attended Saint Bernadette’s grade school and Academy of Our Lady High School, Chicago. Betty grew up in Evergreen Park, IL, and was an active leader and organizer for all her childhood and lifelong friends and relatives. After high school, Betty worked for The Weyerhaeuser Company in Chicago. She met the love of her life, the late Dr. John L. Regner of Kenosha, WI. The two met at Paddock Lake while John was on vacation from the Illinois College of Optometry in Chicago.
Betty and John fell in love and spent every available moment together between work and studies at Berghoff Restaurant on Adams Street. They talked about their plans together and shared many special moments of being young and carefree. They were married on June 14, 1969, at Saint Bernadette’s Catholic Church. Betty dedicated her life to raising her three children: Matt, Maggie, and Mollie. Betty was as active in the local community as she was a mother and dedicated daughter. She managed John’s optometry business, Regner Family Vision, for almost 40 years in Kenosha. Most holidays and summers were spent visiting her parents and relatives in Chicago. As time went on, Betty orchestrated many family events in Eagle River, WI, and Kissimmee, Fl. If Betty wasn’t by the lake, she was by the pool laughing away with family and friends. Her moral compass, infectious laugh and humor, and life advice were all the cornerstones of her family and friends. Betty spent many mornings around a table sharing stories and comparing notes of raising teenagers while drinking coffee with many special and dear friends. She texted and talked daily to many of her tribe, as they shared a special sisterhood that will never be broken. There was never a task or favor that Betty could not accomplish, things like that were just natural to her. It was not uncommon for Betty to randomly help a stranger in need, always being an example and trying to help people who struggled.
Betty is survived by her children LtCol (ret USMC) Matthew (Rania) Regner (Tampa FL), Dr. Margaret (David) Regner-Hodge, and Mollie (Dr. Walter) Wiesztort, both of Kenosha, WI. Betty is also survived by seven grandchildren: Samir Abboud-Regner, Dr. Michael (Emily), John, Benjamin, Emelia Hodge, and Logan and Elliott Wiesztort. Betty spoke to all her children and grandchildren daily and of course, gave them life advice. She is survived by her sisters Alice Kmiec and Mary Kay Adams as well as many loving nieces, nephews, and dear family.
A special thank you to her partner for the past 6 years, Michael Leitch, Sr. Michael loved and cared for her up until her final moments. Thank you to the caring and dedicated team at Froedtert, Kenosha, especially Dr. Anna Silenzi, you always have her heart. Betty was preceded in death by her parents Frederick and Annamae Giltmier, Dr. John Regner, her brother Frederick Giltmier and granddaughter Elizabeth Hodge.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday, September 9, 2023, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church at 11:00 a.m. Visitation is 9:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.