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1947 Jinny 2024

Virginia Jean Brunsell

January 21, 1947 — January 10, 2024

Kenosha (formerly of Cottage Grove)

Virginia (Jinny) Jean Brunsell (76) died peacefully on January 10, 2024, under the care of Kenosha’s Hospice Alliance, with her sister and nephew by her side. She was born to Dean and Erva Hunzicker on January 21, 1947, in Madison, WI.

Early on, she worked to earn her cosmetology license but soon realized that her passion and lifelong joy was caring for children. For 50 years, she would nanny for many families, including a family of triplets whom she cared for from infancy to age 10. She was a camp counselor at Pine Lake and loved to take her campers on long excursions in the woods. Many of her campers returned year after year for another week with Jinny. For 27 years, she taught “Awanas” Christian classes for young children.

Jinny loved taking part in church and community organizations. She sang in the choir at City Church in Madison and worked tirelessly to participate in the yearly Christmas production. She proudly continued a family tradition as a member of the Lake Mills Congregational Church’s “Peanuts Project” fundraiser for 35 years. After retiring to Cottage Grove, she was a Lioness for 10 years.

She enjoyed traveling around the US to visit friends and family, but her greatest travel adventure was a series of four ski trips to Austria. She loved to tell stories about Austria and joked that if her niece and nephews were not in the US, she would have moved there.

Nothing was more important to Jinny than family. She called her niece and nephews her “three kids,” whom she looked after countless times. She made her home a place of warmth and fun for them with games, movies, books, stories, and good memories around the fireplace. Later in life, chronic illness took a toll on her health, but she remained upbeat and positive despite her difficulties. Her greatest joy toward the end of her life was the arrival of her two grand-nephews. She always looked forward to the next family gathering and was already planning a family meal for her birthday when her final illness took hold. Jinny will be dearly missed as a kind and caring person by her family and friends.  

Jinny was preceded in death by her parents, grandparents, and brother-in-law. She is survived by her brother Ken (Julie), sister Joanne (Tony), nephews Dave (Kate) and Brandon (Jack), niece Jessi (Ryan), grand-nephews Bradley and Bryson, step-niece Amy, step-nephew Scot (Adriene), and five step-grand-nieces and nephews, Cameron (Baily), Maytie, Emily, Owen and Liam.

On March 9, Cress Funeral Home, at 3325 E. Washington Ave., Madison, will host a celebration of life from 1 to 2:45. A private graveside internment will follow.

Cress Funeral Home East Washington


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