Christian 01

Meg (Bates) Zenk

March 10, 1940 ~ November 15, 2021 (age 81)


Margaret “Meg” Zenk was born in Detroit, Michigan, on March 10, 1940, to Charles and Dorothy Bates. She married Gregory Leo Zenk at Saint Laurence Catholic Church in Elgin, Illinois, in 1962, and they moved to Butler, Indiana, in 1976. She is survived by her five children - Mari (Keith) Sanders, Gerry (Becky) Zenk, Kristien (Audra) Zenkov, Amanda (David) Stechschulte, and Melinda (Tim) Johnson; her nine grandchildren – Ashleigh (Arick) Stall, Ian (Sara) Sanders, Brittany (Danny) Gregus, Aubrie (Noah) Tinsley, Hannah Stechschulte, Mary Grace Stechschulte, Gregory Stechschulte, Maria Zenk-Johnson, and Margaret Zenk-Johnson; her six great-grandchildren – Felicity and Zelie Stall, Maddox and Finley Sanders, Ezekiel Gregus, and Jonah Tinsley; her brothers - Tim Bates and John (Joan) Bates; and her sister Kathie (Bill) Bjork. She was preceded in death by her husband, her parents, her brother Chuck Bates, and six great-grandchildren – Angelus, Jude, Gabriel and Micah Stall, and Philomena and Patrick Gregus. Meg attended Saint Edwards High School of Elgin, Illinois, Patricia Stevens Career College, and the University of Saint Francis. As a teenager, she worked with her best friend Sharon Sauceda at the Elgin Woolworth’s restaurant, and she later served as a model at the Marshall Field’s Department Store in downtown Chicago. Meg spent one year in the Maryknoll Convent in Saint Louis, Missouri, before returning to Elgin and marrying Greg. Meg’s charitable heart and her profound life-long Catholic faith led her to Saint Joseph Hospital in Elgin, where she worked as the head of volunteers, and to Eastside High School in Butler, Indiana, where she was a Special Education Aide. Meg’s opus, however, was the 36 years she spent as the director of the DeKalb County Council on Aging and the DeKalb Area Rural Transit Service in Auburn, Indiana. When Meg took over as director of the senior center, she had one worker to supervise, but upon her retirement, the Council on Aging and the DeKalb Area Rural Transit Service had grown to include 23 employees. She rallied the community and secured a Community Focus Fund grant to raise the $700,000 necessary to move the center from its location at a small church in downtown Auburn to its present beautiful, spacious dwelling on East Seventh Street. Although Meg had to regularly work 70-80 hours per week, managing the Heimach Center brought her so much joy. She was known in Auburn as the person to whom anyone in need could turn. She knew the services provided by every agency in the county and aided the needy with respect and care. Her legacy includes stories of her offering the clothing off her back and the shoes from her feet when she noticed that the people she was serving were lacking those items. When the Social Security Administration mentioned the possibility of closing the Auburn office during the 1990’s, Meg fought successfully to help her seniors keep their access to services. Meg’s greatest love was for her family, and her happiest moments were spent when they were able to gather and enjoy lakes in Michigan and Indiana. She made the world a better place through her beautiful service to others until COVID-19 tragically ended her time on this earth. A private family service will be held Friday, November 19, at Saint Michael the Archangel Catholic Church in Waterloo, Indiana. A public celebration of life will be held during the summer of 2022. Feller and Clark Funeral Home of Auburn is assisting the family with arrangements. To leave condolences visit

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Private Services

St. Michaels Catholic Church
1098 CR 39
Waterloo, Indiana 46793

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