Rudofine (Rudi) Korst thumbnail

Rudofine Rudi Korst

July 26, 1922 -
April 19, 2021

Rudofine (Rudi) Korst, 98, passed quietly on the 19st of April, 2021 in Naperville, Illinois.  She was born on July 26, 1922 in Vienna, Austria to Ludwig and Karoline Haslinger and had two older brothers, Ludwig and Karl.

Rudi grew up in the outskirts of Vienna and enjoyed visiting her relatives from Up…read more

Rudofine (Rudi) Korst, 98, passed quietly on the 19st of April, 2021 in Naperville, Illinois.  She was born on July 26, 1922 in Vienna, Austria to Ludwig and Karoline Haslinger and had two older brothers, Ludwig and Karl.

Rudi grew up in the outskirts of Vienna and enjoyed visiting her relatives from Upper Austria, waltzing whenever she could and assisting with running the family business.  She met her husband Helmut Korst, on a train traveling through the German countryside and they wed in 1942 on the day before her 20th birthday.  After the end of World War II, Rudi followed her husband to the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, arriving on the Queen Elizabeth with her two young daughters (Christine and Dorothy) in tow.  Rudi came to this country without the ability to understand or speak English but overcame this hurdle with grace, never lost her charming Viennese accent and was known for her storytelling and wonderful sense of humor.  Now rooted in the U.S., sons Peter and Rick were added to the family and in 1954 Rudi was proud to gain her American citizenship.

As her husband’s career as a Professor of Mechanical Engineering grew in prominence, Rudi’s support and devotion played an important role in his trajectory.

Always the gracious hostess and head of the Mechanical Engineer Wives group, Rudi helped with assimilating these new students and their spouses into the local and academic community.  Her New Year’s Eve parties were a must attend event and culminated with dancing and singing throughout the night.

Rudi also gave of her time by reading German to blind students at the university, was always there for neighbors in need and kept the doors of our home open to travelers and friends from across the globe.  Rudi loved being surrounded by books, working in the book department of Robeson’s department store and later Pages for All Ages and had a passion for reading, photography and following the exploits of the Fighting Illini.  While she enjoyed traveling the world with her husband, Rudi always looked forward to returning to the simplicity and beauty of the Illinois countryside she grew to love.

Rudi’s greatest pride, however, was embodied by her love of family, her husband, her four children; Christine (Jerry), Dorothy, Peter (Lynn) and Rick (Kate), nine (9) grandchildren and six (6) great grandchildren.  She reveled in the Christmas Eve gatherings where Austrian traditions were shared across several generations.

Rudi, or Oma as she was known by her grand and great grandchildren, will be greatly missed.  We are comforted by the outpouring of love expressed by all those touched by Rudi throughout the years, and envision that Rudi and husband Helmut are reunited, once again waltzing to the music of Johann Strauss.

A memorial Mass will be said at 11am on Monday, June 7, 2021 at Holy Cross Catholic Church, 405 West Clark Street, Champaign, IL.  Burial will follow at Mt. Hope Cemetery, Urbana, IL

In lieu of flowers, commemorative gifts can be made to the University of Illinois Foundation, “Helmut H. Korst Awards Fund”, P.O. Box 734500, Chicago, IL 60673-4500.

Condolences may be offered at www.morganmemorialhome.com.

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Service Information

Service Information

Date: Monday, June 7, 2021

Time: 11:00 am

Holy Cross Catholic Church

Address:

405 W. Clark St.
Champaign, IL 61820

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