Irene Theresa Japa, 89, passed away Monday, March 20, 2023.
She was born on February 21, 1934 in South Bend to Alex and Mary (Chiszar) Halasz. She married John Japa on September 17, 1960, who survives along with two daughters Jennifer Japa and Janice Japa, a son James Japa and two grandchildren Mary Japa and James Japa. Irene was preceded in death by a son John Japa, a brother Julius Halasz and two sisters Maryanne Priester and Joan Zahl.
Irene worked at the former South Bend Marriott Hotel, The Morris Inn, The East Race Inn, Notre Dame and also did private catering. She was a kindergarten teacher’s aid at Hay Middle School for many years. She loved children and provided child care services for many families to which she was lovingly referred to as “Granny”. She was very creative and enjoyed crafting, making greeting cards and rubber stamping. She was a member of the 4H Club and other equestrian associations where she worked with children and proudly showed her beloved Arabian horse.
Private services will be held. Memorial contributions may be made to The Juvenile Diabetes Foundation in lieu of flowers.
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