Virginia Frances (Backer) Vacho, age 91, of Ladysmith, passed away Saturday, Feb. 1, 2020, at Marshfield Medical Center-Ladysmith of a heart attack.
Virginia was born in Oak Park, Ill., on May 30, 1928, to Albert (Macovicka) Backer and his wife Frances (Svoboda) Backer. Her parents had emigrated from Studenec (Prague), Czech Republic. She graduated from Morton High School in 1946 in Cicero, Ill. She worked at Sunbeam Manufacturing, making mix masters (and her kitchen toaster which is still working today and was built around 1956).Virginia also worked as a salesclerk at Sears, Roebuck and Company before she got married.
On Oct. 12, 1957, Virginia married William J. Vacho, her sweetheart and a dairy farmer/machinist from rural Ladysmith. They met through a Chicago girlfriend of Virginia’s who had also moved to a farm in Ladysmith.
She lived on a dairy farm north of Ladysmith from 1957 until three years before her death. She was a “Chicago-Girl,” but husband, William taught her how to drive tractor, milk cows and fix machinery. He also taught her how to do a bomb drop from his airplane, a tailor craft and Cub. William had been an engineer in WWII in the Air Force and he flew bomb runs over Germany. So, while Virginia worked in the garden, Bill and his son practiced flying on the grass-strip next to the garden.
Virginia was an excellent cook. She made many Slovak recipes like “Paprikash” (Paprika Chicken) and “Kolecky” (Rolls).
In 1976, Virginia and Bill’s son, Mark, took over the family’s dairy farm and continues to run it today. When her husband Bill died on Nov. 23, 2015, Virginia stayed on the farm one year with dementia and macular degeneration. In January 2017, she moved to Ladysmith Care and Rehab, where she enjoyed crafts, bingo, crocheting and she had excellent care. She will be dearly missed.
Virginia is survived by her children, Mark Vacho of Ladysmith and Julie Vacho of Johnson Creek. She also has two grandchildren, Chelsey (Eli) Bauer of Waterloo and Quinn Straubhaar of Cottage Grove. She is also survived by her great-grandchildren, Ally Marie Bauer and Ty William Bauer of Waterloo.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Bill; parents Albert and Frances Backer and brother, Albert J. (Bob) Backer, formerly of Brighton, Colorado.
A memorial service will be held at 10:30 a.m., July 25, at Riverside Cemetery in Ladysmith. A luncheon will follow at 12:30p.m. at the VMA Veterans Memorial Hall in Ladysmith. All friends and family invited.
Nash-Jackan Funeral Home is assisting the family with the arrangement.