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Ellen Kay Berkstresser Erickson

Mrs. Ellen Kay Berkstresser Erickson, age 55, of Costa Mesa, CA and a former Tipton resident died Monday, January 17, 2005. She was born November 16, 1949 in Altoona as one of a set of triplets, the daughter of Bernard S. and Eleanor L. Burket Berkstresser. She is survived by her husband, Rodger Erickson; one son, John Brubaker of Dillon, CO and his father Gary Brubaker of State College. Also surviving is her mother, Mrs. Eleanor Berkstresser Clark of Tyrone; a brother, Robert and wife Brenda Berkstresser of Lansing, KA; a sister Janet, wife of Harry Brown of Baltimore, MD; two brothers, Jerry and wife Lisa Berkstresser of Altoona and John and wife Lynne Berkstresser of Bethlehem, who with Ellen Kay were triplets. Also surviving are three nieces, Donna Cape, Sue Ellen Rabeaux and Holly Kindig; four nephews, Robert Berkstresser Jr., Brant Berkstresser, Scott Brown and Justin Prisk. She was preceded in death by a brother Bernard D. Berkstresser.
She was a graduate of Bellwood-Antis High School, Class of 1967, received an Associate Degree from Mount Aloysius in 1969 in Medical Science. She worked for one year as a medical secretary at Altoona Hospital and moved to California where she was employed as a medical secretary for a number of years. When in Tipton she was a member of the Tipton Methodist Church. She was invited via her association with the Marlboro Man, who died of lung cancer from smoking, to journey through Europe at the invitation of Senator Ted Kennedy where she spoke in 17 countries to government officials to urge curtailment of advertising by the tobacco industry to aid in encouraging non-smoking among the youth of Europe.
Funeral service for Mrs. Erickson will be held Monday, January 24, 2005 at 2 p.m. at the Richard H. Searer Funeral Home Inc. with Reverend Norman E. Huff officiating. Private interment will be at the convenience of the family at Blair Memorial Park. Contributions in her memory may be made to the Care Assurance Fund of Epworth Manor, 951 Washington Ave., Tyrone, PA 16686.