Obituary: Elizabeth “Betsy” Hoke

Dec. 6, 1942 – May 1, 2024

Elizabeth “Betsy” Hoke, a beloved wife and mother, entrepreneur, talented artist and designer, passed away peacefully on May 1, 2024 after a brief illness. Betsy’s life was a testament to creativity, entrepreneurship, and a deep love for her family, friends, and the places she called home.

Born on Dec. 6, 1942, in Milwaukee, Betsy attended Richards School in Whitefish Bay – where she would meet her future husband, Charlie Hoke, in first grade, and later attended St. Monica’s and Dominican High School. In 1958 at the age of 16, she and Charlie were “reintroduced” and began what would be a 66-year long relationship. She attended Barat College, in Lake Forest, Illinois, and graduated in 1964 with a degree in economics. She returned to Milwaukee and in 1965, Betsy and Charlie married, and together they built a beautiful life filled with love and family adventures.

Betsy’s drive and passion for art and design led her to pursue an additional degree in interior design. She became a professional member of ASID and held licenses in several states. Eventually her entrepreneurial spirit led her to purchase her own company, Sturgeon Interiors, which she successfully operated for 35 years. Through her work, she transformed countless homes and businesses, leaving behind a legacy of beauty and thoughtful design in every space she touched.

Beyond her professional accomplishments, Betsy found immense joy in her artistic pursuits. Painting served as a creative outlet, allowing her to express her love for nature and the world around her. Many of her canvases captured the essence of Door County, where she spent summer weekends with family and friends at her home in Baileys Harbor. During the winter months, Betsy and Charlie cherished their time in Naples, Florida, where they enjoyed the sunshine, palm trees, and the company of longtime friends.

Above all else, Betsy valued her role as mother to her four children, whom she loved unconditionally and supported wholeheartedly in all their endeavors. Her children and grandchildren were the light of her life, and she reveled in every moment spent with them, creating memories that will be treasured forever.

Betsy is survived by her loving husband, Charlie Hoke; her children Cathy (Bob Ashbaugh) Hoke, Lauren (Adam Bertlinger) Hoke, Chad (Elina Peduzzi) Hoke, and Steve (Michelle) Hoke; her grandchildren Gretchen Lotter, Heidi Lotter, Erich Lotter, Charlie Hoke, Maisie Hoke, Eli Tiller-Braun, Abby Hoke, and Lily Hoke; her brother Bill Gehl (Carol), niece Annelise Gehl and nephew Will (Morgan) Gehl, as well as numerous other relatives and friends who will carry her memory in their hearts forever.

Betsy’s family is eternally grateful for the care and support provided by the staff of Froedtert Hospital, St. John’s on the Lake and Legacy Hospice, and the caregivers of Right at Home.

A visitation will be held at Feerick Funeral Home (2025 E. Capitol Dr. Shorewood, WI 53211) on Tuesday, June 4, 2024 at 10 am, with a celebration of life at 11:30 am, and a luncheon reception to follow.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Glioblastoma Foundation ( in her honor.