Travis Silvas

The saying goes: behind every great man stands a great woman. Though the quote has taken many forms over the years, its meaning has mostly stayed the same.

It’s a meaning embodied in the life of Roxanne Gaedert, who sadly passed away Friday, February 16.

Roxie, as I’ve always known her, was the loving wife of County Journal founder John Gaedert. To those who knew her, however, she was so much more.

She was the family’s lifeblood, running the household, planning events and trips, and ensuring everyone always had what they needed. Ensuring everyone had what they needed was one of her greatest gifts and extended well beyond those in her family.

Maya Angelou said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

Roxie always made you feel welcome and important.

I learned this about her quickly as a child, as I was always greeted warmly and welcomed into her home. As a neighbor, my family spent much time at the Gaedert household during my youth. I have many fond memories of time spent at their pool, on their boat in Grand Haven, or playing sports in the yard. Most of those memories include Roxie, who often entertained and made us laugh simply by being herself.

She was genuine and authentically herself in nearly every situation. She loved to make people laugh and often did so without much effort.

Her kindness and her charm were apparent to me throughout her life. Even as an adult, she could make me laugh without much effort.

She may not have received the recognition or adoration that John did. Those who know the family well understand how great she was and how much she’ll be missed.