Juliana Lena was born on January 26, 1924 at the family home in Westphalia to Frank and Julia Frei Buckholt. Even though she was the middle child in a family of 7, which included 3 older siblings (Walter, Odelia, & Flora) and 3 younger ones (Alois, Louise & Lucy), her parents knew from the very start that this little blonde, curly-headed beauty would be different.
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She attended the Catholic Church of Visitation in Westphalia as well as the school there for eleven years. She was very popular and quite the tomboy. Her senior year she attended Lott High School and was a member of the school band. She was also elected to be Miss Personality for the school that year. After graduating in 1942, she moved to Marlin to study to be a nurse. She worked for Dr. Hutchins as an eye, ear, nose and throat assistant. When her mother died, she moved back home to help take care of the younger siblings.
“WOW, what a girl!” are the words Paul Olbrich said the first time he saw Juliana at a barn dance, of which he was a judge. They would soon fall in love and be married in 1947. They moved to Burlington shortly after, where they had their two children, Joan and Mark. She became active in St. Michael's Catholic Church and the schools attended by her children. The family moved to Temple in 1999 where she and Paul would spend the rest of their 55 years together before Paul’s passing in 2003.
Juliana (or Nudy, as her family called her) had a zest for life. Her love of God, family, friends, music, art, travel and gardening, and her gracious demeanor were an inspiration to all who knew and loved her.
She was an artist who primarily painted roses and bluebonnet landscape scenery. Whenever a family member got married, she had a beautiful tradition of gifting the newlyweds of one of her paintings. She was a talented seamstress who not only designed and made her own wedding dress, but also wedding dresses for her sisters. She quilted with neighbors and friends in Burlington, and upon moving to Temple, she joined the St. Luke's Catholic Church quilting society where she helped make many quilts. She had a green thumb and could grow anything! Her back yard was a beautiful sight to be seen; full of roses, perennials and vegetables - including some swiss chard from seeds that her grandmother had brought with her from Switzerland, which she shared with everyone.
She was a musician who could play any instrument put in front of her by ear, including the organ, piano, accordion, French harp, horn, flute and drum. She also loved to dance, which explains why she was at that barn dance the night she met Paul (she won that contest by the way).
She also wrote and published a book entitled "A Tribute to Westphalia and My Ancestors". In her personal copy she kept an updated list of births, deaths, marriages and children born to her as well as her extended family members.
Juliana loved to travel, whether it was throughout our great country, abroad, or just admiring the scenery on a countryside ride. Her favorite trips were to Europe in 1975 where she and Paul toured Germany, Austria, Italy and Switzerland as well as their second trip to Italy in 1997 where they concentrated on the great city of Rome. She also very much enjoyed a bus trip with a traveling polka band to Minnesota.
She had many friends in Westphalia, Burlington, Rosebud, Temple and the surrounding areas. She was a volunteer in the churches, schools, nursing homes and other charitable organizations. She had two special needs friends whom she made a deal with, saying that whoever went first should sit by St Peter and hold the gate open for the others. She is no doubt up there this very moment doing just that.
She is survived by her beloved children Joan Miller (husband Mike) of Georgetown, Texas and Mark Olbrich (wife Debbie) of Burlington, Texas as well as her grandchildren Dana Finlay (husband Cody), Kristi Hancock (husband Jason), Jeff Miller, her great-grandchildren Brody Lee, Reed Hancock, Paige Finlay, Mark Finlay and her siblings Allie Buckholt (wife Lou), Lucy Halfmann and Louise Lange.
Services for Mrs. Olbrich will take place at St. Luke’s Catholic Church on Thursday November 7, with visitation from 10-10:30am, a rosary from 10:30-11:00am, a funeral mass at 11:00am and a reception following mass.
The family would like to thank The Elmcroft Of Cottonwood staff as well as Katy Thieme for their special care and consideration.
In lieu of flowers, please donate to The Church of the Visitation Building Fund, 144 CR 3000 Lott, Texas 76656 in memory of Juliana Buckholt Olbrich.