Virginia Berkel

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Virginia F. Berkel, nee Vander Pluym, 97, of Belleville, IL, born November 24, 1924, in Breese, IL, died Monday, May 2, 2022, at Dammert Geriatric Center, Belleville, IL.

Virginia loved to sew, embroider, crochet, work puzzles, and spent countless hours nurturing her 12 children. She was a member of St. Augustine of Canterbury Catholic Church, Belleville, IL, and was active in the Rosary Group at church and the St. Vincent De Paul Society. Virginia volunteered for Meals on Wheels and was involved in many pro-life activities.

She was preceded in death by her husband of 69 years, Lester T. “Mike” Berkel, whom she married on April 9, 1947, and who died on February 4, 2017; two daughters, Angela and Catherine; two sons, Donald and Andrew; a great-grandson, Joshua; her parents, Louis and Bertha, nee Abeln, Vander Pluym; two sisters, Margaret and Helen; and five brothers, Walter, Robert, James, Jerome, and Richard.

Surviving are eight children, Patty (Carl) Bussmann, David (Ginger Winston) Berkel, Jean (Bill) Kopp, Mary (Kevin) Pasbrig, Jim (Deb) Berkel,      Joe (Denise) Berkel, Rick (Katrina) Berkel, and Susie (Ken) Dinquel; many grandchildren; many great-grandchildren; great-great-grandchildren; three brothers, Charles (Pat), David, and Thomas Vander Pluym; and many nieces, nephews, friends, and other relatives.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to BJC Hospice. Condolences may be expressed to the family online at

Visitation: Friends may visit from 10 to 11 a.m. Saturday, May 21, 2022, at St. Augustine of Canterbury Catholic Church, Belleville, IL.

Funeral: A memorial mass will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 21, 2022, at St. Augustine of Canterbury Catholic Church, Belleville, IL, with Msgr. William McGhee officiating.

It was Ginny’s wishes to donate her body to Saint Louis University School of Medicine.



7 Comments on Virginia Berkel

Thomas Vander Pluym said : Guest Report Jul 15, 2022 at 2:15 PM

The family and all who knew her will miss this very special lady in our lives. Always a smile and many laughs when we visited with her.. You are in our thoughts and prayers, Ginny. Love Always, Tom

  • Wauwatosa
  • Wisconsin
jeanette Yocks miles said : Guest Report May 11, 2022 at 4:18 PM

my sincerest sympathy to the family.. she was a sweet lady and a hard worker.

  • Swansea
  • il
Vickie (Matychowiak) Elmore said : Guest Report May 11, 2022 at 12:39 PM

My prayers are with your family.

  • Caseyville
  • IL
Emily Wilson said : Guest Report May 08, 2022 at 2:25 PM

I shared a room with Ginny at the Memorial Care Center. She was a real blessing. Always cheerful, pleasant and caring. My deepest sympathy at her loss.

  • Belleville
  • Il
Dave Vander Pluym said : Guest Report May 08, 2022 at 10:35 AM

You all have our sympathy for the loss of a very special person. My family and I are thinking about you. We used to play cards and travel together often with Ginny and Mike and had a great time. She will be greatly missed. God bless her and her family. Dave & Family

  • Belleville
  • iIL
Jennifer (Berkel) Cobb said : Guest Report May 04, 2022 at 12:40 PM

Aunt Ginny was one of the sweetest ladies I know. Her love for her family, friends and the Lord were evident in everything she did. I especially enjoyed the visits from her and Uncle Mike on their many travels over the years. “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.~ Matthew 5:4

  • Murfreesboro
  • NC
Sandy Martin said : Guest Report May 04, 2022 at 12:29 PM

She was a beautiful soul who spread love and laughter everywhere she went, I will miss her. I'm thankful that she was in my life so long before God decided it was time for her to come home. I will keep all family members in my prayers through this difficult time.

  • Richmond Hill
  • GA

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