Harriet M. Birkel

Harriet M. Birkel

October 29, 1931 – January 21, 2022

The Family will receive friends on Tuesday, January 25th from 5pm to 7pm at the West Center Chapel, followed by VIGIL SERVICE at 7pm.  MASS OF CHRISTIAN BURIAL: Wednesday, January 26th at 10am, St. Leo the Great Catholic Church, 1920 N. 102nd St.  Interment, Calvary Cemetery.  Memorials will be directed by the family to Autism education-driven charities..

To view live broadcasts of the Vigil Service and Mass, please go to www.heafeyheafey.com and click the “View Live Cast” button on the home page.


Harriet M. Birkel was born on October 29, 1931 and passed away on Friday, January 21, 2022 in Omaha, NE. She was an accomplished teacher, loving mother and grandmother, and cherished sister, sister-in-law, aunt, and friend. She leaves behind her loving children, James L Birkel (wife: Hope Birkel), and Laura L Kocher (husband: Walter Kocher); grandchildren: Lukas James, James Benjamin, and Emily Jo Ann; many nephews, nieces, grandnephews and grandnieces. She was preceded in death by her husband, James H Birkel; her brothers, Jack Lawrence and his wife Bonnie Lawrence, and Clyde Lawrence, Jr. and his wife, Betty Lawrence; sister, Audra L. Mellis; nephews John Lawrence and Mark Lawrence.




  • Ethel Cunningham Posted January 25, 2022 7:06 am

    My condolences to Mrs. Birkel’s family. She was my first grade teacher in 1961 & I have fond memories of her. I’ll never forget the first time the class painted. We had to show our “art” in front of the class. I had painted a blue duck & the entire class broke out laughing. Mrs. Birkel stopped the children’s laughter, said it was “lovely & showed creativity”, and put it on the bulletin board. She was a wonderful person & encouraging teacher who made enough impact on me to remember her 60-years later!
    Peace be with you!

  • Elise Turille Posted January 26, 2022 10:34 am

    I had the good fortune of living next door to Mrs. Birkel for many years. And my grandparents before me. I cannot tell you how many hours we spent talking over the fence. Laughing together and sharing our love of special education. She made a huge impact on my life. After an injury I was stuck at home for a long time and she was a bright spot in my life. She was a remarkable woman and I am so blessed to have known and cared for her. I will miss her always.

  • Norma Gier Posted January 26, 2022 10:55 am

    I have so many wonderful memories of working with Harriet at Weight Watchers. She was one of the funniest people I have ever known. No matter what the situation, she would bring humor and her wonderful laugh. I’ll never forget her.

  • Theresa M. France- Risley Posted January 26, 2022 12:06 pm

    Jim I am so sorry for your loss. My family is sending heartfelt condolences. Know that your family is in our prayers and sending the famous France hugs to your family.

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