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Bernice B. Alsheimer, known as “Bunny,” died at her home in Leisure World, Silver Spring, MD at age 92. She was born in Waiakea, Hilo, Hawaii as the youngest of seven children and grew up on the Olaa sugar cane plantation in Pahoa, Hawaii.
She was educated at Pahoa School, St. Joseph's School in Hilo, St. Francis School, Honolulu, and Phillips Commercial College. She held two jobs while attending school in Honolulu: as a switchboard operator at Fernhurst, a residence for young women living away from home, and as a clerk-steno for the Civil Aeronautics Administration in Honolulu.
When she was 19, Bunny went to Japan to work with the occupational forces after the Japanese surrender in August 1945. A talented linguist with fluency in Japanese, Bunny was the executive secretary for a colonel with the Far East Command. During her tour, she traveled to China, the Philippines, and Russia as part of General Douglas MacArthur’s staff, and then returned to Japan.
Her next position was in Europe with the Headquarters Command in Heidelberg, Germany. For a time, she was reassigned to the U.S. Embassy in Oslo, Norway. When she returned to Heidelberg, she met her future husband,Karl, a bookkeeper at the occupational forces hotel where she resided. In the evenings, Karl entertained the hotel guests playing the piano at the hotel restaurant. Bunny would join him and sing along, before being reposted to the United States in 1950.
In 1951, Karl finished his studies at the University of Heidelberg and embarked on a trip to the United States to visit Bunny. Within months, they were married at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Bethesda, MD. Early in her marriage, Bunny worked for the Department of the Interior in Washington, D.C. She and Karl lived in Bethesda, and later Rockville, raising five children. They had three grandchildren.
In 1973 she returned to work full-time as a court clerk for the Maryland Property Tax Assessment Appeal Board in Rockville, MD. In 1993, she retired from the court.
After retirement, Bunny joined the Leisure World Ceramics Club, practiced Tai Chi, and tap danced. She served as a lector and Eucharistic minister at Our Lady of Grace Church in Silver Spring, MD. An avid traveler, she continued visiting numerous countries in retirement. In her lifetime, she traveled to 53 countries.
Funeral service will Be private. Interment Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Silver Spring, MD.
Memorial donations in memory of Bunny may be made to JSSA Hospice (www.jssa.org) or People Animals Love (www.peopleanimalslove.org)