Alice Vernell (Reichardt) Burttschell was born in Sealy on March 19, 1930, to Alice and Otto Reichardt. She attended school in Cat Spring through grade nine, and then graduated from Sealy High School in 1947. On June 3, 1950, she married the love of her life, Joe Burttschell. Together they raised four children: Bill, Kathy, Michael, and John.
Alice started school in Cat Spring, where she was tutored in English, since she spoke only German at the time. Through grade nine, she lived with her grandmother in town during the week and then went to the farm on the weekends. After graduating from Sealy High School, she went to work for E.R. Squib and Company in Houston. She rode the bus to Sealy on weekends to see Joe, and they went to the movies in Sealy or to a dance in Bellville, Coshatte, Sealy, Mixville, or Cat Spring. They danced a million miles over the next 62 years and their favorite was swing dancing to the big band sound.
In 1948 she attended her first Aggie football game with Joe, dressed to the hilt including a cobalt velvet tam and an Aggie mum corsage – a testament to her ever-present sense of style and the beginning of her lifelong passion for A&M. After beginning their married life in Sealy, on Sept. 12, 1951, Joe came home with the news that Humble Oil was transferring him to Louisiana. Bill was born the next day, and they moved to Louisiana two weeks later. After two years in Louisiana, they returned to Sealy where they became active members of the community.
For 10 years they owned and operated the White Auto Store downtown, and in 1978, she began a 21-year career as a florist. She shared her talent and passion for people and flowers at Leah’s Petals and Pots, the floral department at Bill’s Supermarket and at the Blossom Cottage. After she retired in 2009, her talents for flower arranging continued from home upon special request for countless weddings, funerals, and special occasions.
Alice enjoyed her years of participation with the Bluebonnet Society and Trinity Lutheran Church and Choir. She will be forever remembered for opening her home to one and all for showers, weddings, and gatherings of any kind, and especially for her love of Christmas decorating and entertaining. But at her very core was an unwavering love and devotion to her family, which was never more evident than during holiday gatherings.
All who knew here would agree that Alice was a woman of great integrity, style, dignity, and grace, and an amazing role model for her family and friends. Countless friends and family benefited from her generous spirit and supportive nature - she could always be counted on to be your biggest fan.
Alice is survived by her son Bill and wife Karen of San Felipe, daughter Kathy Gregg and husband Joe of Austin, son John of Cat Spring, and brother Otto Reichardt Jr., and wife Dorothy of Cat Spring, in addition to numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband Joe and son Michael.
Alice left us on Jan. 2, 2016. Her family would like to express their thanks to Dr. Krishnaswamy and his staff at Sealy Urgent Care for their care of this special lady.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Austin County A&M Club Scholarship fund, Trinity Lutheran Church, or a charity of your choice.