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Obituaries » Edite Zirnitis Franklin

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December 6, 2017

A service to celebrate her life will be held on Monday, December 11, 2017, beginning at 12:00 PM, at the Latvian Evangelical Lutheran United Church, 122 Cherry Hill St. Kalamazoo, MI 49007. The family will receive friends at the church beginning at 10:0 AM, two hours prior to the service. Interment in Riverside Cemetery.

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Age 82, passed away on Thursday, December 6, 2017, with family at her side. Edite was born in Riga, Latvia, the daughter of Emils Zirinitis and Elfride (Purklavs) Zirnite who died in their fifties. She has one sister, Silvija Avis of Augusta, Michigan. The family began a new life in this country as refugees from World War II when Edite was 14. Edite and Robert celebrated their 55the wedding anniversary on August 19 of this year. They have three children; Lukass Robert Franklin of Barrington Hills, Illinois; Silvija Anna Arums of Three Rivers, Michigan, and Baiba Mara Rozite of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Lukass and Mari have two daughters Tatjana and Laila; Silvija Anna and Eriks have a daughter Sarma and a son Martins; Baiba has two sons, Edmunds and Roberts. Edite is a graduate of the University of Michigan with two degrees in languages. She has taught hundreds of University and high school students Spanish and Latvian at the University of Michigan, St Frances College in Joliet, Krisjana Barona Latvian School in Chicago and Garezers Summer High School in Three Rivers, Michigan. She was a nationally recognized Latvian grammarian. Edite was a proud member the Latvian sorority Daugaviete. She served faithfully as a pastor’s wife in American and Latvian Lutheran congregations for more than 50 years. She left richness in her wake touching thousands of people.