Dolores Sykora, 89, passed away January 12, 2020

Dolores Sykora, 89, of Bridgman, MI passed away January 12, 2020, at Woodland Terrace.

A Celebration of Life Service will be held at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 914 Lane Drive, St. Joseph, Michigan on Saturday, January 18th at 11am. Friends may visit at Starks & Menchinger Chapel, 2650 Niles Road, St. Joseph, Michigan on Friday, January 17th from 4pm to 6pm. In lieu of flowers, you may donate in Dee’s name to St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 914 Lane, St. Joseph Michigan, or the Maude Preston Palenske Library, 500 Market St., St. Joseph, Michigan. Those who wish to leave an online condolence may do so at

Dolores “Dee” Sykora was born on March 20, 1930 to David and Doshia Oates in Wyandotte, Michigan. She grew up in Trenton, Michigan and graduated from Trenton High School at age 16, in 1946, after which she attended Albion College for one year. In her sophomore year she transferred to the University of Michigan to study music. She immediately joined the Alpha Delta Pi Sorority in her first semester. In the fall of 1949, her sorority worked with the fraternity Theta Chi to build a float for the upcoming homecoming celebration. The morning of the celebration she noticed a handsome guy outside the sorority house, inspecting the float. She immediately rolled up her pajama pants, covered her hair curlers with a scarf, and put on her coat to go out and talk to him. That handsome guy was Robert “Bob” Sykora, who had recently graduated in engineering and was working on his MBA.

One week after she graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in music, she and Bob were married on June 23, 1951. They immediately moved to St. Joseph, Michigan. With Whirlpool, they lived in Marion, Ohio, back to St. Joseph, Findlay, Ohio, and then back to St. Joseph where she lived until moving to Woodland Terrace, Bridgman in 2014.

Dee was a member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, St. Joseph, Michigan, where she was active as the Girls’ Choir Director and sang in the adult choir. She was a long time member of Monday Musical Club, as well as a volunteer for Hospice. In addition to her music, she enjoyed reading and watching her grandchildren play sports.

Dee is survived by her five children Ann (Victor)Palenske of Sodus Township, Robert D. (Carla) Sykora of St. Joseph, John (Michelle) Sykora of St. Joseph, Jane Sykora of St. Joseph, and Timothy Sykora of State Line, Pennsylvania, as well as sixteen grandchildren and eleven great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband Robert K. Sykora, her brother Kenn Oates, her sister in law Berenice Sykora Palmer, and her parents.

The family would like to thank the caregivers at Woodland Terrace for their wonderful care for the last five plus years, especially Allison, Nicole, Lisbeth, Holly, Stacy, Gabby, Kari, Martha, and Tonya. They would also like to thank all of the nurses and staff at Lakeland Caring Circle for their support in her final days. 

Copyright © 2020