Brandt (Krengel), Karen Vernetta of Burnsville, passed away at her home on May 1, 2021 after courageously battling tongue cancer with all her strength for over four years. Karen was preceded in death by her wonderful and generous parents Bill and Vernetta Krengel and her beloved sister-in-law, Sandy Krengel. She will be greatly missed by her husband of 44 1/2 years, Gerry, children Greg (Sarah) Brandt and Kelly Brandt, grandchildren Evan and Elodie, brothers Ken (friend Judy) Krengel and Jim (Mary Lou) Krengel, nieces, nephews and many friends. Born on April 11, 1952 at Bethesda Lutheran Hospital in St. Paul, MN. Karen grew up admiring her big brothers, Ken and Jim, who always looked out for her. A highlight of her early adulthood was in 1972 when she was crowned Miss Grand Avenue and competed for the Queen of the Snows title in the St. Paul Winter Carnival in January of 1973. She met Gerry in 1975 through a new member orientation at church (every mother's wish). They married on September 11, 1976 and began their life together in Burnsville, MN. Karen especially enjoyed their trips to Europe, Alaska, The Grand Canyon and winters in Florida, as well as traveling with their Iowa group and family trips. As a mother, Karen was always encouraging, uplifting and available to assist with projects, attend school events or lend an ear. She loved her miniature schnauzers Foster, Ozzie and Henry James. Karen's grandchildren, Evan and Elodie, brought her much joy and they each adored their Grandma Karen and the attention she poured on them. With her loving heart and a passion for taking care of others, nursing was a natural career for Karen. She first became an LPN at Bethesda Lutheran Hospital and went on to become an RN at St. Mary's Junior College in 1974. She spent the last 33 years of her career at Fairview Southdale Hospital in the Heart Center. She touched many lives throughout her career including the many fellow nurses who became great friends. Karen will be affectionately remembered for her kindness, keen sense of humor, her ability to make people laugh and the warmth with which she embraced everyone she encountered. She celebrated others by remembering every birthday, anniversary and special event in their lives with a card accompanied by her perfectly thought out words. Karen was very social and could be counted on for an engaging and witty conversation. Her ability to make someone feel special and remember the smallest detail of their life was uncanny. To ensure she didn't miss a beat she always prepared a list of questions and pulled it out to make sure every topic was covered. Karen had a strong Christian faith and a love for music, especially Christian gospel. She loved to socialize over a good game of bunco (which she somehow won far more than she lost) or card games whether it was a game of 500 or a "competitive" game of Uno with her grandchildren. Her love and commitment to her family and friends will not be forgotten. Memorial Service will be held 12:30 PM Saturday, May 8, 2021 at the Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, 13801 Fairview Dr. Burnsville, with a gathering of family and friends on Friday (5/7) from 4-7 PM at the White Funeral Home, 12804 Nicollet Ave. S., Burnsville (952-894-5080). In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions are appreciated to support cancer research at the University of Minnesota. Please make gifts payable to the University of Minnesota Foundation. Memo line: Karen Brandt, fund #21833. Mail to: P.O. Box 860266 Minneapolis, MN 55486-0266. To give online, go to and search for "Erling O. and Geneva E. Johnson Memorial Fund." Condolences: