Rosella Ann Baalman | 93 | Alton
Rosella Ann (Toots, Rosie) Baalman, of Alton, passed away peacefully on Jan. 3, 2023, at Alton Memorial Hospital after a brief illness. She was born on June 3, 1929, in Meppen, Illinois. She is the daughter of Joseph and Helen (Droege) Baalman.
Her formal education ended in the sixth grade when she remained home to help her parents and siblings. Her career in the health care field started at an early age, when she began working at St. Anthony’s Infirmary in Alton, Illinois. At age 20, while working at St. Anthony’s Infirmary, her mother died suddenly at of a cerebral hemorrhage at age 43. For the next six years, Rosella remained at home to help her father care for the home and her siblings. She then began seeking outside employment and worked at several restaurants in Hardin. Soon, Nurse Marge Hillen, hired her to work at Jersey Community Hospital. After several years, she moved to Jerseyville, bought a car, learned to drive, and got her GED. She then moved to Alton and worked and trained in the lab at St. Joseph’s Hospital as an EKG Tech. She also trained at Washington University and Barnes Hospital. For many years, on one of her two days off each week, she traveled from Alton to Meppen to visit her family and help care for her father, who was now bedfast, and cared for at home. She was also called upon many times and willingly helped look after her sister and husband’s children. She loved her nieces and nephews and her great nieces and nephews. When St. Joseph’s Hospital closed, she drew one unemployment check when St. Anthony’s Hospital called and asked for her to fill in for someone for a short time. After that, St. Anthony’s asked her to stay on and she worked in their cardiology department as an Echo Tech. until she retired.
She was a member of St. Mary’s Parish in Alton and enjoyed several church sponsored trips including trips to Ireland, Germany, and Italy. She also enjoyed a trip to Hawaii. She traveled one or two days a week to Jerseyville to help her niece, Julie and husband, Rod with their children, Jack, Joe, and Rose. She continued to do this for 15 years.
She truly spent her life helping others. Enjoy your reward, Tootsie!
Preceding her in death, in addition to her parents were three brothers, Gilbert, Victor, and Joey Baalman, sisters-in-law Sally and Mary Jane Baalman, nephews Gary and Jim Baalman. She is survived by her sister, Frances (Bill) Hurley, brother, Severine Baalman, and sister-in-law, Janie Baalman. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews, and great nieces and great nephews.
A visitation was held at Gress, Kallal, & Schaaf Funeral Home in Hardin from 8 to 9:30 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 6, 2023, followed by a mass of Christian burial at 10 a.m. at St. Joseph’s Church in Meppen, IL. Fr. Don Roberts officiated. She was laid to rest at St. Joseph’s Cemetery. Memorials may be given to St. Mary’s Church in Alton, St. Joseph’s Cemetery in Meppen, masses, or family choice.