A livestream of Audrey's service is available at the link below.
Audrey Jane Menke passed away on January 8, 2024 in Winona, Minnesota, at the tender age of 24. Born on August 15, 1999 in St. Paul, MN, we felt extremely blessed when Audrey joined our family in June of 2004.
Audrey had a special love in her heart for her brother Brian and sister Grace, and she would take pride in their accomplishments as a big sister would. Audrey had a huge heart for others; especially for her immediate family, grandparents, and many aunts, uncles, and fun-loving cousins. She had a deep sense of compassion for all animals which included her numerous horses, dogs, cats and guinea pigs that she cared for over the years. Some of her favorite vacations included Disney World, a trip to visit the lions and tigers at the Big Cat Habitat in Indiana, visiting retired circus elephants in Tennessee to experience hands-on daily care for the elephants, and visiting her sister at the University of Washington in Seattle. Audrey truly enjoyed helping her mom in her 4th grade classroom at Cotter Schools in Winona. She volunteered her time helping teachers with various tasks and assisting students who might need an extra hand.
Audrey was an active reader, knew sign language, and enjoyed participating in Project Compass community classes where she learned to bake peanut butter cookies, created fun art projects, bowled the night away, and danced at many holiday themed parties. Audrey enjoyed going to movies, cooking, sewing, knitting, drawing, journaling, and crafting. Audrey won 1st Place in the Special Olympics 100 yard dash. She enjoyed her time in the summer attending Camp Needlepoint in Wisconsin for children and young adults with Type 1 diabetes and volunteering at Vet Camp for Kids at Cotter Schools. She attended horseback riding lessons with her instructor Sue and horse camp in Iowa with her sister Grace. Audrey enjoyed spending time at her Aunt Sharon's cabin with her extended family boating and tubing behind the pontoon, and also with Grandma Q and Grandpa Larry going on many fun adventures. Audrey absolutely loved going to concerts which included Taylor Swift, One Republic, Ed Sheeran, Scotty McCreery, Megan Moroney, and Dierks Bently. Without a doubt, Taylor Swift was Audrey's favorite musical artist and she listened to her songs for hours at a time.
Audrey had a long history of health complications which was a struggle for her throughout her short life. Despite this, she used humor to brighten the situation and always held on to hope, which those around her admired. She had the most beautiful faith and took time each day to read the Bible. In fact, if she could speak to you now, she would ask you to take time to become closer to the ones you love. She had the biggest heart for people, especially those who were less fortunate.
Though Audrey's journey was far too short, the legacy of her gentle spirit lives on, and she is now reunited with her Grandpa Pete, Aunt Teresa, Aunt Elizabeth, and Uncle Larry who preceded her. Her beautiful spirit lives on in the hearts of those she left behind. Audrey is survived by her loving parents, Jane and Kevin, younger brother Brian, younger sister Grace, Grandma Judy, Grandma Kay (Grandma Q), Grandpa Larry, and a wide circle of family including aunts, uncles and amazing cousins. So the next time you hear a song from Taylor Swift, consider it a friendly hello from Audrey Menke.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a charitable donation to Camp Needlepoint to help send a child with type 1 diabetes to summer camp, the Winona Area Humane Society to help homeless animals, or the Minnesota Hooved Animal Rescue Foundation to help abandoned horses have the food and medical care they need to survive.
Audrey's memorial service will be held on Monday, January 15, 2024 at Hoff Celebration of Life Center in Goodview, MN at 11a.m. A visitation will begin at 9:30, until the time of the service.