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Agnes E. Dwyer

September 26, 1947 May 1, 2019
Agnes E. Dwyer
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Obituary for Agnes E. Dwyer

Agnes Dwyer, of Bloomfield Township, entered God’s heavenly kingdom May 1, 2019 while in her sleep at her home in Bloomfield Township. She was a young, 71-years-old. Agnes was born in a German Refugee Camp in Coburg, Germany on September 26, 1947 to Stanislaw (Stanley) and Stanislawa (Stella) Sylwestrzak.

She along with her mother, father, uncle and several aunts were refugees trapped in Germany with no home left in the homeland of Poland after World War II. She was the second child to Stanislawa and Stanislaw Sylwestrzak. She had an older brother, Christopher, who died before he was two years old due to vaccine poisoning. While still in Germany, her younger brother Irenaeus (Ernie) was born. In January 1952, young four-year-old Agnes began her new life in the United States with her father, mother, uncle, aunts, as well as a new family friend.

Her entire family first moved into a small rental home in Hamtramck with just a single suitcase for her immediate family. There Agnes lived for three years with her family while her father obtained a job in the booming auto industry. Her mother and father wanted Agnes to learn the English language for a year before going to school as all she knew was Polish. However, while in Hamtramck, her younger sister, Rose, was born. She and her family became parishioners at St. Florian Catholic Church in Hamtramck. They lived in Hamtramck for three years before then moving to Dwyer Street (God dropping a hint) in Detroit in 1955. Agnes joked that the family had trouble pronouncing that name of the street but they really loved the house.

The family became parishioners at St Louis the King Catholic Parish at the end of Dwyer Street. It was there that Agnes went to grade school. After she graduated grade school in 1962 she went to Detroit Osborn High School where she graduated in 1967. After high school, Agnes continued her education pursuing a business degree. Agnes took several contract temp office jobs before she landed a position at Chrysler in Centerline where she would meet her husband, Ronald, in this office. They dated for about a year before getting married. It was funny while filling out the marriage license paperwork, the legal clerk thought she made a mistake when she put her new last name on the line for her previous street address.

After the wedding, they moved to East Lansing, Michigan as her husband, Ronald, was transferred there. They were only there a year before Ronald took another job and they moved to Warren, Michigan. In Warren, they had their first child, Ronald Jr. Their stay was not a long one, as a year later, they moved again. In 1974, Agnes and Ronald purchased a home in Bloomfield Township where they both resided to the present year. There Agnes and Ronald had three more children, a daughter, Kathryn, and two more sons, Paul and David. Their children went to St. Regis Catholic School before attending Birmingham Seaholm High School. Ronald and Agnes were both parishioners at St. Regis Catholic Church to today, a total of 45 years.

After she had Ronald Jr. in 1973, Agnes did not spend much time going back to the office. Her primary job was homemaker and mother. She did, however, become involved at their children’s school at St. Regis for their “Hot Lunch” program, where every week for one day food from restaurants was brought in. Agnes was the lead manager of the Taco Bell “Hot Lunch” days.

At her home in Bloomfield Township, she loved gardening and landscaping. Her front yard and back yard would be adorned with flowers from petunias to marigolds to zinnias to begonias. While her children were still grade school age, she loved planting her large garden in her back yard with a variety of vegetables including zucchini, tomatoes, beans, lettuce, corn, cucumbers, and dill to make homemade dill pickles. She also loved her grapevine and for a few years, made homemade grape jelly. She loved trees and soon their Bloomfield Township home was like a wooded oasis. Agnes’s love of flowers didn’t end outside. The inside of her house was adorned with flowers as well and her indoor garden became bigger and bigger every year.

Agnes loved her children and would also spend her evenings with them helping them with their homework. She always valued education. As her children grew older, she also enjoyed spending time with her eight grandchildren. A few more may still be coming someday and if so, she will be watching them from heaven above. While her children worked, she would babysit the grandchildren during the day. There were never more than two to three at the most, and as the new ones came, the older ones were off to school. There is a reason why her grandchildren are so smart, and that is because of the time and care she provided that many kids in today’s society do not get.

Agnes loved family gatherings and lived for those. She also loved hosting family gatherings including two summer picnic barbeques. One was typically a birthday party for all four kids who were born years apart, but whose birthdays were just days apart in June and July, except for one son who celebrated a half birthday because his was in December.

Agnes loved vacation. When she first met Ronald, he brought his tradition of going up north for a week in the summer. They first went to Alpena for about five summers. Then they went to place called Margie’s Court on Lake Leelanau which was near Traverse City, Michigan. After 1987, they moved over to Houghton Lake and have been going every year since. Agnes introduced the tradition to her parents, and before you knew it, other family members joined in on the family vacation. Through last year, the family had grown to occupy all the cottages over two resorts on the lake. Back home, Agnes loved spending her summer evenings on her screened–in backyard porch reading or watching the sunset and listening to the crickets.

Agnes also loved her crossword puzzles. What started as a Sunday newspaper tradition after breakfast became almost a daily activity. Another thing that Agnes liked to do was write her memoirs. She would write down daily what the family did that day so there would be a historical log. She also loved to read everything from non-fiction to fiction novels and even some history.

Her favorite holidays were Christmas and Easter and she loved to decorate the house for those events. The house would be incredibly decorated for Christmas. There were so many unique Christmas bulbs on the trees that you almost couldn’t see the green branches of the tree. She also had a smaller Christmas tree for her Campbell Soup bulbs that she started collecting over 25 years ago.

Agnes also loved some of her TV shows which were more reality. She loved 24, American Idol, The Voice, Hell’s Kitchen, Kitchen Nightmares, MasterChef, old Matlock shows, and TV movies, especially mini-series that don’t happen today. She also loved game shows. Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy where evening staples at dinner time for 35 years. She also became fond of some of the new television channels that played classic game shows. There were times when her son, Ronald Jr., would visit and they would watch together until 2 a.m. or longer, while Ronald Sr. went to bed hours before. Her daughter, Kathryn, had also stayed up late with her to watch old Shirley Temple movies.

Agnes also loved to go out to eat but she actually preferred the simpler restaurants to the pomp and circumstance. Her favorite restaurants included Arby’s, Red Olive, Big Boy, McDonald’s, Burger King and Olive Garden. When cooking at home, she had become a great cook once married even though she cooked very little before being married. She could make the best meatloaf, mostaccioli, lasagna, polish hamburgers, pierogis, chicken divan, pizza, and more.

Agnes was the best wife and mother one could have. She loved her family and was the matriarch of her side of the family after her parents died. She loved her husband and made the best home for him and the best home for her children. They were overly spoiled. Her eight grandchildren were spoiled even more than her children.

It is truly impossible to sum up Agnes Dwyer in just these many words. She was an incredible, loving woman and will truly be missed.

Agnes is survived by her husband of over 47 years, Ronald; children Ronald (Lana) Dwyer Jr., Kathryn (David) Schaefer, Paul (Kate) Dwyer, and David (Shelley) Dwyer. She is also survived by her grandchildren Jacqulyn Schaefer, Katelyn Schaefer, Gwendolyn Schaefer, Madalyn Schaefer, Skylar Newland, Teagan Dwyer, Abigail Dwyer, and Jacob Dwyer; brother Ernie (Alina) Sylwestrzak, and sister Rose (Michael) Strohauer-Rabior, as well as several nieces and nephews. Agnes is preceded in death by her older brother Christopher Sylwestrzak, and parents Stanislaw and Stanislawa Sylwestrzak.

Family and friends may visit at Lynch & Sons Funeral Home, 1368 N. Crooks Road (between 14-15 Mile Rds.) on Monday, May 6, from 3-8 p.m. with a Rosary at 7 p.m. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Regis Catholic Church 3695 Lincoln Rd, Bloomfield Hills, MI 48301 with visitation beginning at 10:30 a.m. followed by Mass at 11 a.m. Entombment will be in Resurrection Cemetery, 18201 Clinton River Road, Clinton Twp., MI 48038.


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