City of Oaks Funeral Home & Cremation

Esther Wenzel

Raleigh, North Carolina

Age 91.
Died 05/06/2022.

Esther Wenzel
Esther Marie Holtkamp Wenzel was born on July 16, 1930 in Kalida, OH and passed away peacefully the morning of May 6, 2022. She was the youngest child of the late Edward Cornelius Holtkamp and the late Mary Stechshulte Holtkamp. She was preceded in death by her husband of 53 years, Edward Charles Wenzel, her sisters, Margaret (Holtkamp) Pizzurro and Catherine Mary Holtkamp, CDP, and brother Edward Joseph Holtkamp.

Esther grew up in the small village of Kalida, OH and attended Mary Manse College of Toledo, OH where she received her Bachelor of Science in Mathematics in 1952. After graduation, she moved to Santa Monica, CA to pursue her career and purchased a bright white TR3 convertible to fully enjoy the California lifestyle. She spent several years in Denver, CO where she honed her skiing and golfing skills, and finally met her future husband, Edward, after moving to Madison, WI. They were married in 1962.

Esther spread joy to all who knew her with her constant smile, ever present cheerful attitude, and frequent outbursts of song. She acquired a love of walking and running later in life and competed in many 5K races to benefit charities close to her heart, usually coming in first in the 70+ divisions. She continued her love of golf all of her life and could often be found on the putting green at Springmoor Retirement Community.

She will be greatly missed by her four surviving children and their families: Edward Wenzel and wife, Anita of Troy, MI; Anne Eason and husband, Donald of Chesapeake, VA; Thomas Wenzel and wife, Shelly of Raleigh; and Susan Getter and husband, Marc, of Raleigh. She was the proud grandmother of six beloved grandchildren, Andrew, Margaret, Eddie, Adam, Madeline, and Emma.

Visitation will be at 10AM on Friday, May 13th, 2022 at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, followed by a funeral Mass at 11AM.

In lieu of flowers, tell your mom you love her, sing a happy song, or walk/run a 5K supporting a charity you love. Alternatively, donations may be made to Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, 2718 Overbrook Dr, Raleigh NC 27608 or the Springmoor Endowment Fund, 1500 Sawmill Rd, Raleigh, NC 27615.

For additional information or for service details, please reach out to the family directly.

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City of Oaks Cremation and Funeral Home is a full-service funeral home in Raleigh, serving all of North Carolina and beyond. We provide an alternative to costly funeral homes and every day we help families in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and all over North Carolina make simple, affordable funeral arrangements.

Simply having to reach out to a funeral home can feel overwhelming. Our goal is to simplify the entire funeral home experience and make the process as easy as possible. We hope to eliminate any unnecessary surprises by publishing our total cost and the services we provide directly on our website. All of our obituaries are provided free of charge as a way to help families celebrate and commemorate the lives of their loved ones.

Our Promise

Apples to Apples

Just like all other licensed funeral homes in North Carolina, City of Oaks Cremation, LLC is regulated by the NC Board of Funeral Service.

The same laws that apply to the big corporate funeral homes also apply to the modest independently owned firms like ours. All crematories in North Carolina, regardless of who owns them, are inspected annually by the state and must adhere to the same rules and laws.

Genuine Care

We're committed to providing families within our community unsurpassed service before, during and after the time of loss.

Our staff will provide clear communication to your family through each step as we move forward from the original phone call notifying us of a death to the time we deliver the urn back to your family. We will treat your family with the utmost respect, as we honor the wishes of your loved one.

We promise to make this process affordable and as endurable as possible.

State Wide

Our Funeral Home is located in Wake County NC; however, we provide our services to families throughout the entire State.

Unlike other funeral homes, we don't charge an additional mileage fee. Regardless of what county you live in, we can help your family with making simple, affordable funeral arrangements. From Asheville to Wilmington, we're proud to help families statewide.

Our Services

Direct Cremation


Nobody likes surprise costs added in at the last minute. We guarantee you will not find any hidden charges here. We include everything you need for a simple or direct cremation. Simple, affordable and reliable. We have not changed the cost of our direct cremation service since we opened City of Oaks in 2012.

Cremation with Solidified Remains


We offer the option of choosing how you receive your loved ones remains. Selecting our Direct Cremation with Solidified Remains option is a beautiful way to transform cremated remains into 40-60 “stones” that you can hold.

Cremation with Visitation


City of Oaks Funeral Home and Cremation provides an affordable cremation option with onsite visitation. Nobody likes surprise costs added in at the last minute. We guarantee you will not find any hidden charges here. Simple, affordable and reliable.

Immediate Burial


An immediate burial has the same end result as a traditional burial; however, we have eliminated the extra (sometimes unnecessary) services prior to getting to the cemetery. Not everyone wants an open casket for viewing or a limousine for the family. Despite the term immediate, we can move as fast as you need or as slow as you like. This option simply allows you to save money by eliminating some of the fancy extras at the funeral home.

Traditional Funeral


We offer the same traditional funeral services as the big corporately owned funeral homes in the area; however, we cost about half the amount. You might consider a traditional funeral service if your family is looking for an open casket visitation, a traditional church service or a funeral service in the funeral home's chapel. A traditional funeral service can be altered to fit the needs of your family.

Green Burial


This establishment is one of a select number of funeral homes who meet the criteria for providing green funeral service by the Green Burial Council; a tax-exempt, nonprofit organization working to encourage environmentally sustainability in the field of funeral service. Our Green options allow for a funeral to take place without the use of toxic and non-biodegradable materials/chemicals.



As an alternative to traditional cremation, City of Oaks Funeral Home also offers Aquamation. The Aquamation process, often referred to as alkaline hydrolysis, uses a solution of water and potassium hydroxide to facilitate natural decomposition.

City of Oaks Funeral Home & Cremations