Helen “Cleo” Bruckmeier

Published 11:36 am Friday, March 8, 2024

Helen “Cleo” Bruckmeier

Helen Cleopha “Cleo” (Slowey) Charron Bruckmeier, wife of Fred Bruckmeier, died peacefully, surrounded by family on March 5, 2024. Cleo was a long-time resident of Austin, MN who loved being active in social events in Austin and its surrounding communities. Cleo was a loving, humorous and candid woman who loved people and worked hard while caring for her family.

Cleo was the eldest daughter of George “Clarence” and Helen Florence (Buckley) Slowey and was born on June 29, 1932, on their family farm in Yankton County, South Dakota. She attended primary school in a one room schoolhouse named for her family, “Slowey School.” She graduated from Irene High School in 1950 and went on to attend and graduate from St. Vincent College of Nursing in Sioux City, Iowa. She was blessed with three sons, Michael, Christopher, and Timothy with her first husband, Kenneth Charron. In her career, Cleo thrived in complex and difficult situations. She worked as an emergency room nurse at Plunkett Memorial Hospital in Adams, Massachusetts. In 1968, she moved with her family to Rochester, Minnesota where she worked nights on the psychiatry unit at Saint Mary’s Hospital. Through this time, she was a devoted mother who supported and raised her three sons as a single mother. She married Karl “Fred” Bruckmeier on June 29, 1979, at St. Pius X Catholic Church in Rochester, Minnesota and moved to Austin, MN. She worked at St. Mark’s Living in Austin until her retirement.

Cleo had the unique ability to engage in conversation with anyone and everyone. She enjoyed people and their stories. Her family often commented on how she always left them knowing how much she loved and appreciated them. Within the community, she enjoyed attending performances, celebrations, and activities with family and friends. Fred and Cleo loved to travel; included in their journeys were Germany, Alaska, the Panama Canal and to small towns throughout the midwest and the greater United States. More than anything, Cleo loved, sacrificed for, and was fiercely loyal to her family and friends. Her letters, phone calls, and coffee conversations kept family and friends connected through both happy and difficult times. She especially enjoyed gathering the family together for an annual summer party where stories and laughter abounded. Cleo was an avid reader; all who knew her knew she had a passion for reading. She raised her boys reading aloud to them at night. This trait continued to bless the generations to follow and will continue to be her legacy.

Email newsletter signup

Cleo is survived by her husband, Karl “Fred” Bruckmeier; sons, Michael (Lori) Charron of Winona, and Timothy Charron of Glenville, Minnesota; daughter-in-law, Jan Charron of Carlisle, IA; seven grandchildren, Jenna (Jon) Hill, Kacy (Justin) Flaws, Taylor Charron, Daniel (Lani) Charron, Samantha Charron, Kelsey Charron, and Julia Charron; five great-grandchildren, Lauren, Nathan, Jensen, Presley, Taytum and two on the way; brother, Tom Slowey; sisters-in-law, Jane Slowey, and Dianne Slowey. She is preceded in death by her parents, George “Clarence” and Helen Slowey; son, Christopher Charron; sister, Clarice Slowey; brothers, Jim (Betty) Slowey, Jack Slowey, and Jerome Slowey.

Continuing Cleo’s favorite family summer tradition, a Celebration of Life will take place at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, July 13, 2024, at Worlein-Hoff Funeral Home in Austin, Minnesota. All friends, colleagues and family are invited and welcome to attend. A family interment has occurred in Oakwood Cemetery in Austin, Minnesota. Worlein-Hoff Funeral Homes are assisting the family with arrangements. Condolences may be expressed to the family online at www.worlein.com. In lieu of flowers, please consider sending memorial contributions to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.