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2012 Obituaries - page 2

Anna June Reed

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Anna June Reed, 97, of St. Charles, passed away peacefully on Wednesday evening, Nov. 7, 2012.

She was born June 15, 1915, in Chicago, the daughter of Vol and Anna (Hulseberg) Turner.

June’s family made their home in both Illinois and Wisconsin over the years, eventually settling “on the farm” in Lily Lake in 1927.

After June completed her schooling, she continued to help on the family farm while working at Ray Reed’s General Store.

June was united in marriage to George Reed on Oct. 19, 1947.

They began their new life together in Lily Lake, later building their own “dream home” in rural St. Charles, raising their daughter Jane, filling the home with memories, laughter and love.

June began working for DuKane Manufacturing around 1950. She worked in data processing and timed her retirement with George’s.

She was a lifetime and faithful member of Grace Lutheran Church, giving her heart and time to many missions through the church, including Rebecca Circle. June also handmade the Paramounts that hung on the altar for many years.

June also was an avid gardener; her flowers and vegetables gracing her table and pantry season after season.

June was an excellent seamstress and even made her own wedding dress. She also made quilts with friends from church, which were given to charity.

June was a member of Leisure League in Geneva, as well as the Sunset Swingers in Elburn. She also volunteered her time for 12 years, helping with crafts and activities at Provena Pine View Care Center in St. Charles.

She is survived by her son-in-law, Paul Cyko of Elburn; two sisters-in-law, Doris Turner of Lily Lake and Phyllis Turner of Sister Bay, Wis.; many nieces, nephews, wonderful neighbors and a family of friends.

She is preceded in death by her parents; her husband, George; one daughter, Jane Cyko; two brothers, George and Howard Turner; and one sister, Elizabeth Turner.

Visitation and a funeral to celebrate her faith and her memory was held Monday at Grace Lutheran Church in Lily Lake Rev. Ernst Rex, pastor of the church, officiated. Interment followed on Tuesday at Lily Lake Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in her name to benefit her favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “June Reed Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at www.conleycare.com.

Fred ‘Phred’ Hendershot Jr.

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Fred “Phred” Hendershot Jr. , 89, of Elburn, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2012.

Fred was born Aug. 18, 1923, in Tecumseh, Mich., the son of Fred Sr. and Corinne Hendershot.

When Fred was a young child, his family moved to Oak Park, Ill., where he attended local schools. Around the age of 8, he took on his first job selling newspapers. Fred went on to graduate from Oak Park High School, where he was a member of the Oak Park-River Forest football team.

After graduating high school, he enlisted in the U.S. Army, where he proudly served his country stateside during World War II. He went to officer school and earned the rank of Second Lieutenant. Fred continued his education upon his return to civilian life by enrolling in the University of Michigan, where he studied business.

On June 14, 1947, Fred married his high school sweetheart, Barbara Ann Swikard, and they were happily married for the next 52 years before Barbara Ann’s passing in 1999.

In 1948 they welcomed their first child, Susan. Over time, their family grew to include Kurt, Mark, Karla, Janet and Lance. In the 1950s, after spending some time finding a place to call home, they settled in Mt. Prospect for the next 25 years.

In March of 1981, Fred and his family moved to Elburn, where they created many more memories.

Over the years, Fred worked as a salesman for Ware Aluminum Windows and Frama Building Products.

Fred was a long time member of St. Charles Moose Lodge No. 1368. He also spent time volunteering with the Salvation Army and Golden Diners.

He is survived by his children, Kurt (Sandy) Hendershot, Mark (Christine) Hendershot, Karla (Mike) Teafoe, Janet Hendershot and Lance (Courtney) Hendershot; grandchildren, Derek, Kendra, Bekki, Kyle, Taryn, Mitchel, Haley, Wyatt and Landon; five great-granchildren, with 2 on the way; and sister, Barbara Jean Hendershot

He is preceded by his loving wife of 52 years, Barbara Ann; and his daughter, Susan Reed.

Visitation was held Saturday at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St. Elburn. A memorial service celebrating Fred’s life was held at the funeral home. Pastor Lisa Kruse-Stafford of Cornerstone United Methodist Church officiated.

A special message from Fred:
“In lieu of flowers or donations I ask you take a friend to lunch or dinner and tell him or her the things we think of only after someone is gone.”

Tributes and condolences may be mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. You can read Fred’s full life story on the web at www.conleycare.com.

Della M. Denny

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Della M. Denny, 99, of Batavia, formerly of Wasco, died peacefully at Delnor-Community Hospital in Geneva, surrounded by the prayers of her family on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2012.

She was born May 12, 1913, in Mark, Ill., the oldest of Enrico and Augusta (Bertucci) Mancini’s eight children.

Della grew up in Mark and attended local schools. Like many of her generation, a basic education was provided but was quickly replaced with opportunities to help support the family. Della was no different and found work at Westclox, a watch company, located in LaSalle, Ill. While working at Westclox, Della kept her eye on a certain gentleman, Peter Denny, who worked at a different department. She only got occasional glances when they both would visit the water fountain, but their fate was sealed when they shared the dance floor. Della lost her heart that night and Peter gave his in return. Their two lives became one on Sept. 1, 1934, with 53 years of memories to follow.

They began their new life together in LaSalle. Before long, her uncle, Severo Bertucci, asked her to come and help run a local family tavern, and renamed it Denny’s. Though she may not have known it then, this would be the start of a lifelong relationship with owning and operating taverns and restaurants.

April 24, 1938, the family was blessed with a son, D. Michael, then in August 1945, Susan D. made the family complete. Della and Peter continued to run Denny’s in LaSalle until they moved to Wasco in 1950, where they opened their own tavern, Denny’s Den. They lived in a small connected apartment just behind the tavern, making it their home until their retirement on March 24, 1973, when they sold the business to John Karametzos, who renamed it The Wasco Inn.

Denny’s Den was known all over for their cooking on Friday and Saturday, with Della running the kitchen, making every dish the only way she knew how—from scratch. The aromas that came wafting through enticed everyone who stepped through the door, and helped make the tavern a well-respected and very busy place. The fish frys on Saturdays were very popular, as well, not to mention the businessman lunches throughout the week.

Della was a faithful member of St. Patrick Catholic Church in St. Charles.

Della’s responsibilities started early, being the oldest of eight, and may have been where her incredible work ethic was born. It was that foundation that allowed her to find success in the restaurant business, a business fraught with failures for those not willing to dedicate all they had to making it work on a daily basis. Della and Peter made it look easy though, with Peter making jokes at the bar, and Della’s singing above the din and raucous laughter. They were a match made in heaven, and have finally been reunited for their next chapter of adventures.

She is survived by one daughter, Susan Galley of Elburn; one daughter-in-law, Nancy Denny of Hackettstown, N.J.; six grandchildren, Jason (Vivian) Galley of Anchorage, Alaska, Natalie Galley of Istanbul, Turkey, Stephanie Galley of Elburn, Clarissa Denny of Hackettstown, N.J., Amanda (Erik) Jorgenson and their children, Van and Liv, of N.J., and Emily Denny, also of N.J.; three sisters, Beatrice Billard of Fairborn, Ohio, Rose (Gene) Bartlett of Peru, Ill., and Margaret (Len) Jaross, also of Peru; several nieces and nephews, and a family of friends.

She is preceded by her parents, Enrico and Augusta Mancini; husband, Peter; one son, Michael Denny; a son-in-law; Bruce Galley; granddaughters, Brandi Galley and Rebecca Denny; and four siblings, Anne Brovelli, Mary Shea, Albina Smith and Hank Mancini.

Following cremation, a private memorial service and burial will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in her name to benefit her favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “Della Denny Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at www.conleycare.com.

Dorothy Jane Holby

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Dorothy Jane Holby, 90 of Elburn, passed away on Monday, Oct. 29, 2012, at her home. She was born on Jan. 28, 1922, in Chicago, the daughter of Owen and Mabel (Flasher) Vrooman.

Dorothy was united in marriage on June 10, 1950, in Oak Park, Ill., to Mr. Eric Holby, and they spent the next 55 happy years together until his passing on Feb. 8, 2006.

Dorothy enjoyed photographing cats, and sold many of her images to magazines and other publications.

She is survived by her son, Eric R. (Tammy) Holby of Elburn.

Funeral services and interment will be private.

Arrangements by Nelson Funeral Homes and Crematory. For more information, contact www.NelsonFuneralHomes.com or (630) 553-7611.

Ronald E. Reynolds

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Ronald E. Reynolds, 78, of Geneva, passed away on Friday, Oct. 26, 2012, at his home, surrounded by his family. He was born July 16, 1934, in Aurora, the son of the late Lyle and Louise (Wickton) Reynolds.

Ron was a 1953 graduate of West Aurora High School. He served in the U.S. Army from 1957-59. Ron worked for Burgess-Norton and then Toastmaster, Inc. for 31 years. He held a passion for organizing his class reunions and enjoyed staying in touch with his classmates.

Ron is survived by his loving wife of 58 years, Charlene (nee Calkins) Reynolds of Geneva; his children, Sally (Karl Cremieux) Reynolds, M.D., of Chicago, and Jeff (Gale) Reynolds, Ph.D., of Paxton, Ill.; three grandchildren whom Ron dearly loved, Clair and Rachel Reynolds of Paxton and Scott Cremieux of Chicago.

In addition to his parents, Ron was preceded in death by his siblings, Robert and Jack Reynolds, Shirley McNally and Grace Orr.

The family would like to offer special thanks to Dr. Bayer and his nursing staff, who treated Ronald for many years, as well as CNS Hospice nurses Beth and Linda.

Funeral services were held Tuesday at The Healy Chapel, 332 W. Downer Pl., Aurora. Interment with military honors was held at River Hills Memorial Park.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be directed to the American Cancer Society.

For more information, call (630) 897-9291 or visit www.healychapel.com to leave an online condolence.

Susan K. Petit

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Susan K. Petit, 55, of Virgil, passed away peacefully, surrounded by the prayers of her family, on Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2012, following a tragic change in diagnosis from a treatable form of multiple myeloma to one of the most tragic and rare forms of untreatable cancer: plasma cell leukemia. Although Susan was only one of 50 cases in the United States, she now claims the promise of everlasting life, free from the chains of cancer, and is finally at peace alongside her Savior, Jesus Christ.

She was born April 17, 1957, in Elgin, Ill., the daughter of Frank and Rita (Zurek) Szewczyk.

Sue grew up in Burlington, and attended local schools, graduating from Burlington Central High School in 1975.

Her senior year would change her life as she met Terry Petit through his sister at a church “fashion show.” Angels were in attendance and took notice, making sure Terry and Susan saw each other again on a local hay ride a few weeks later. What God brings together, let no man put asunder, and no one did as the two were united in marriage a year later on Sept. 11, 1976, at S.S. Peter & Paul Catholic Church.

They began their new life together on the Berens Farm in Virgil for nine years before moving again in the spring of 1984 to run the family farm in Virgil.

Sue and Terry were blessed with three children, and as they grew, Sue worked for a short time in the kitchen of Kaneland High School. Recently, with the help of her famous “green thumb,” Sue became a master gardener and was often heard sharing her mantra, “God made the trees and bees and I’ll take care of seeds and weeds.”

Sue was a faithful member of S.S. Peter & Paul Catholic Church, where she taught religious education for a time.

Sue had a heart made of gold and was beautiful both inside and out. Her hands were gifted in many areas, including ceramics, but made a work of art of her garden. There was nothing she couldn’t grow, but her favorite was her beloved Hasta, of which she had over 100 different kinds.

Her hands not only got dirty in the garden, but also while doing chores alongside Terry, tending to the livestock with care and dedication. Sue was always coming up with ideas for different crafts and projects that brimmed with her unique touches that always seemed perfect. She had a quilter’s heart, too, making family heirlooms with love in every stitch.

Sue was also in charge of making her house a home whose decor changed not only with the seasons, but also her ever-changing tastes. No matter what she changed, it always reflected a “homey” feeling that felt welcoming to anyone and everyone. She passed on to her sons her culinary expertise, making mouthwatering concoctions that made you run to the table in anticipation.

The library was a favorite stop on her runs into town, picking up several books at a time for the rare moments of idle time. So many memories have been made, each one treasured, but none will be forgotten.

She is survived by her loving husband; three children, Jonathan (Heather) Petit and their children, Kelli and Brody of Sycamore, Adam (Kelly) Petit of Genoa and Zachary Petit of Virgil; mother, Rita Steward, and Bud Beeson of Apache Junction, Ariz.; father-in-law, Peter Petit of Virgil; three siblings, Claudia (Dale) Lake of Burlington, Dan Szewczyk of Arroyo Grande, Calif. and Steve (Tammy) Szewczyk of Hampshire, Ill.; many aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins and a family of friends.

She is preceded in death by her father, Frank Szewczyk; one step-father, Sam Stewart; mother-in-law, Earlene Petit; and one nephew, Scott Petit.

Visitation was held Friday at S.S. Peter & Paul Catholic Hall, Meredith Road, Virgil, and concluded with a recitation of the Rosary. A brief visitation was held on Saturday at the church sanctuary. A Mass to celebrate her faith followed visitation. Fr. Ray Diesburg, M.S.C., officiated. Private family interment and cremation were scheduled for a later date.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in Susan’s name to benefit her favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “Susan Petit Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at www.conleycare.com, where you can find Susan’s full life story.

Neil Owen Hoy

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Neil Owen Hoy, 83, of North Aurora, formerly of Addison, Ill., and Fridley, Minn., passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family, on Thursday, Oct. 18, 2012, at Countryside Care Center, where he had recently made his home.

He was born on Aug. 13, 1929, in Chicago, the son of Christen and Clara (Knutson) Hoy.

When he was 4 years old, Neil’s family moved to Minneapolis, where he attended local schools. Neil graduated from Washburn High School, where he was a three-sport athlete, playing basketball, baseball and football. He graduated with the class of 1947.

Neil furthered his education at a local teachers college for a time before attending Minneapolis Business College, where he studied accounting. He graduated in December 1949 and found work at International Harvester. He was doing more than just studying accounting, however, as he studied a certain girl, as well. LaVerne Huar caught his eye at a local mixer, and after sharing the dance floor, where he showed off his best moves, they got to know each other better. Neil passed this initial test with flying colors and won the right to see her again. Their courtship lasted several years before Neil served his country in the United States Navy.

Neil was stationed in Washington, D.C., for a time before being stationed on the U.S.S. Midway. By then, Neil won LaVerne’s heart and also her hand in marriage. Their two hearts became one while Neil was on leave, tying the knot on Aug. 16, 1952, at St. Anne Catholic Church in Minneapolis.

Neil had to return Washington, D.C., with LaVerne in tow, making their home on Minnesota Avenue, where they welcomed a daughter, Deborah Ann. After moving back to Minneapolis and returning to civilian life, Neil continued to work for International Harvester.

The family moved to Fridley on Oct. 18, 1955, and the following spring they were blessed with their first son, Michael Neil. In 1958, Theodore Arthur was born, with Annette Marie to follow two years later. In 1962, Mary Clare was born. Charles Andrew made the family complete in 1964.

In August of 1970, the family moved to Addison, Ill., when Neil accepted a transfer to International Harvester offices located in Melrose Park, Ill. Neil retired in 1984, but it didn’t stick, as he went back to work 18 short months later at Idealease in Chicago until his “final” retirement came in 1988. Neil and LaVerne made 42 years of memories in Addison before moving once more to North Aurora in August of 2012.

Neil was a member of the Addison Community Switchboard, an organization that helps those less fortunate residents of Addison. He was also treasurer for St. Vincent DePaul and was a member of St. Phillip The Apostle Catholic Church, where he was also sang in the choir. Many other organizations benefited from his heart and his time, including delivering Christmas holiday meals and bringing communion to the sick. He worked the Christmas Telethon and many more.

He walked with God and had a contemplative soul. “Silence is Golden” was written in his high school yearbook, but it was more than that. Neil was a quiet thinker, thoughtful; was dedicated and caring. Like many of his generation, Neil was a saver, not a spender, but was always generous with his fellow man. His needs were simple and he never needed to keep up with the latest trends.

He loved to collect foreign stamps and was an avid fisherman. Neil liked to golf weekly for a time, hitting the links with various friends and family. Neil was fond of tennis, as well, and made many memorable rides on his tandem bike. He not only liked to play sports, but he also loved to watch them, too, tuning into college sports, especially football.

When it came to cards, Neil was a shark. He played any game, any time, but was especially adept at cribbage and bridge. Over the years, he took many family road trips to most of the 50 states, showing his children the world around them, singing his favorite tunes with every mile (whether his children wanted him to or not). Neil traveled with LaVerne internationally, as well, touching down in Ireland, Denmark and Hawaii. No matter where they traveled, foreign or domestic, Neil was a connoisseur of food, especially when he embraced his heritage by making his own pickled herring.

Neil was proud of his family and was a constant presence at his children’s, and later his grandchildren’s, sporting and special events. The space he left behind in the hearts and lives of his family and friends will never be filled nor forgotten.

He is survived by his loving wife of 60 years, LaVerne Hoy; six children, Deb (Ken) Neahring of Somonauk, Ill., Mike (Rita) Hoy of Crystal Lake, Ill., Ted (Mary) Hoy of Redding, Calif., Annette (Dick) Theobald of Kaneville, Mary (Dave) Wisniewski of Pella, Iowa, and Chuck (Lisa) Hoy of Wheaton, Ill.; 16 grandchildren, Jeff (Marti) Neahring and their daughters, Kelsie and Katie, of Yorkville, Michelle (Tim) Yocum of Fox River Grove, Ill., Katherine (Erich) Hess and their son, Hayden, of Yorkville, Liz Neahring of San Diego, Kristina Neahring of Schaumburg, Ill., Natalie (Matthew Candir) Hoy of Schaumburg, Savannah, Riley and Dugan Hoy, all of Redding, Calif., Hannah and Vanessa Theobald of Kaneville, Tricia and Klaire Wisniewski, both Pella, C. J. Hoy of Hoffman Estates, and Steven Christophersen and Michael Sacco of Wheaton; one brother, Chris (Karen) Hoy of New Hope, Minn.; many nieces, nephews, and a family of friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

A memorial visitation will take place from 9 to 10 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 26, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. A memorial Mass celebrate to his faith will follow visitation at St. Gall Catholic Church, Elburn, beginning at 10:30 a.m. Fr. Tim Seigel, pastor of the church, will officiate, and interment will follow at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery, Elwood, Ill.

In lieu of flowers, you can donate directly to a charity of your choice or contribute to a memorial that has been established in Neil’s name to benefit his favorite charities. Checks to the “Neil Hoy Memorial” can be made to the “Neil Hoy Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at www.conleycare.com, where you can also find his full life story.

Frank J. Rucci

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Frank J. Rucci, 87, of Sugar Grove, passed away while surrounded by family on Saturday, Oct. 20, at Delnor-Community Hospital in Geneva.

Frank was born on April 16, 1925, in Jersey City, N.J. He was the youngest child of Carlo and Carmela Rucci and the first of his family to be born in the United States.
After high school, he enlisted in the Navy. While awaiting deployment on the USS Mt. McKinley, he attended Dartmouth College.

In 1944, he met the love of his life, Modene Cooper, while assigned to the Armory in Chicago. After the war, he whisked Modene away to New Canaan. They were married on July 4, 1946.

Frank and Modene welcomed daughter Francene. When Fran was 5 years old, the family returned to Chicago and soon welcomed son Corey. They moved to Mt. Prospect, Ill., and happily spent the next 50 years there. In February of this year, they moved to Sugar Grove to be closer to family.

Frank is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 66 years, Modene; daughter, Fran (Jerry) Adams of Sugar Grove; Fran’s children, Dani (Dwayne) Miller, and their children, Sami, Jessi and Jake of Somonauk, Bryan (Cassie) Adams and children, Addison and Riley of Montgomery; son, Corey (Tammy) Rucci and children, Corey, Joseph, Ryan, Alyssa and Jeffrey Rucci of Southlake, Texas.

He was preceded in death by his siblings and parents.

Visitation was held on Tuesday at The Healy Chapel, 370 Division Drive, Sugar Grove. A private family service will be held at a later date. Entombment will take place at Resurrection Cemetery.

Memorials may be directed to St. Katharine Drexel Catholic Church Building Fund, 264 Main St., Sugar Grove, IL 60554.

For further information, call (630) 466-1330 or visit www.healychapel.com/ to leave an online condolence.

Helen Karam

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Helen Karam, 69, of Big Rock, passed from this life to eternal life on Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2012, surrounded by the love and prayers of her family at Delnor-Community Hospital in Geneva.

She was born Nov. 7, 1942, in Hinsdale, Ill., the daughter of John and Adeline Abram.

Helen grew up in Hinsdale and attended local schools before her parents purchased a farm in Elburn. She continued her education at Wasco Elementary. She was a member of 4-H and the Playmakers Club throughout high school. Helen went on to graduate from St. Charles High School with the class of 1960.

Her love and passion for music inspired her to continue her education, and she enrolled in the University of Illinois, where she studied music and English and earned a bachelor’s degree.

Helen met her husband-to-be, Anthony Karam, who was a supplier to some of Chicago’s finest hotels, while she worked for the YMCA hotel on Wabash Avenue. She never forgot the sight of this handsome man arriving at the hotel in his three-piece suit. It was Oct. 12, 1965. Charming but Mr. No-Nonsense, Tony took her order, and a cup of coffee later, turned to leave and said, “I’ll pick you up at 6 p.m. Friday.” His brash confidence swept her off her feet, and an amazingly storied life began. A few dates later, she took Tony home to the Abram family farm in Campton Hills. He may have won Helen’s heart in a month, but winning her mother’s approval would take a year.

Tony and Helen were wed on Jan. 14, 1967, at the Baker United Methodist Church, St. Charles. A week later, on the eve of the blizzard of 1967, Tony’s family would arrive in Chicago for a second wedding. The snow stranded everyone, and stories of that week abound to this day, but on Jan. 30, they were wed at St. Ida’s on Broadway. The following day, tragedy struck as Helen’s father died suddenly. Soon, however, the young couple would leave for Mexico. Guadalajara would become home for the next 12 years. When the economy crashed, Tony and Helen packed up their young family of three and returned to the Abram family farm. With hard work and the loving support of Helen’s family, they moved to Big Rock, where they settled into the property that became the Karam homestead.

Before her time at the YMCA hotel, Helen worked for various companies. Her work experience started with the Little Traveler, a local shop that her mother ran. She moved on to become a retail sales manager for Fred Harvey. After the YMCA hotel, Helen would take on the most meaningful career of her life: being mom.

She spent the next years raising her children and perfecting the role of mother hen, which she applied to the rest of the endeavors of her life. There was nothing more special to her than spending time with her children, which later translated to the special bond she grew with her grandchildren. Once her children were grown, she decided to return to work, taking a receptionist position with Lumanair Aviation Services at the Aurora Municipal Airport from 1992 until her retirement in 2008.

As a woman of faith, Helen was a devoted member of Hinckley First United Methodist Church. After her husband Tony’s passing in October 2008, Helen was not one to sit idle. Instead, she devoted her heart and her time rekindling old friendships, and channeled through them a wish to reconnect to her community and organizations, including the Kiwanis Club. Helen, acting as an unofficial ring leader along with a group of friends, also started the unofficial SNAP Fitness group in Elburn, which extended into lunch and dinner dates. They described themselves as a frail bunch. However, their spirit was anything but.

When Helen’s children were in school, she served 14 years on the Hinckley/Big Rock School Board and helped organize events, including 4-H and homecoming parades, which her children believe was a way for her to keep her eyes on them at all times. Her good friend, Orion Samuelson, always kept Helen up to date with any new developing news and information within the farming community. She even bought Orion his very own Future Farmers of America (FFA) jacket—one that he was not able to afford when he was in high school. It is a gift he continues to treasure dearly.

Helen’s role in the life of her family hasn’t been erased; only changed in an instant. She now shares with St. Peter her brag book, filled with pictures of her grandchildren and bursting with a grandma’s pride. Her spirit is now closer to them than ever, wrapped around their hearts forever.

She is survived by three children and their families, John (Tracey) Karam of Reno, Nev., and their children, Spencer and Emma, Carmen (Rick) Carls of Hinckley, Ill., and their children, Mack and Courtney, and Tony (Shannon) Karam of South Elgin, Ill., and their children, Hayden, Calen and Camden; one brother, David Abram of Elburn; many nieces, nephews and their families; several special cousins, Nancy (Pete) Caris of Western Springs, Ill., Anne (Bruce) Brownawell of Long Island, N.Y., Mary McElroy of California, and Richard (Nancy) Schiller of LaGrange, Ill.

She is preceded in death by her parents and husband.

Visitation was held Saturday at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. Private family committal services were held following cremation.

As special family request, in lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in Helen’s name to benefit her favorite charities. Memorials checks may be made to the Helen Karam Memorial and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119. Tributes and memories may also be forwarded to the family at the same address or through her obituary at www.conleycare.com. For information, call (630) 365-6414 or 800 826-6539.

Virginia Souders

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Virginia Souders, 90, of Kaneville, passed away peacefully on Sunday Oct. 14, 2012, at Provena Mercy Medical Center.

She was born Feb. 28, 1922, to Arthur and Lulu Long in Kaneville, where Virginia attended local schools.

One evening during a dance at Long’s Barn, Virginia caught the eye of Everett Souders. After a whirlwind courtship, they were united in marriage at her parents’ home on Nov. 28, 1946.

Everett and Virginia began their new life in Aurora for a time before settling on her father’s farm in Kaneville. Virginia had a green thumb and enjoyed spending countless hours tending to her lawn and garden. When she was not able to tend to her garden, she spent time sewing and crocheting.

If you ever visited Virginia’s home, you were met with the aroma of her home cooking. She also enjoyed baking, especially for the church bazaar, where you could taste a homemade cake or pie.

She loved caring for her pet sheep. During the winter, when the sheep were moved, you would catch Virginia taking water across the road for them. Even with all of her hobbies and interests, there was nothing more precious to her than spending time with her grandchildren.

Virginia is survived by her three children, Roger (Blanca) Souders of Kaneville, Linda (Andy) Stavrou of Geneva, and Cindy (Ed) Kleren of North Aurora; three grandchildren, Rodger (Erica) Souders, Chad (Haleigh) Souders and Neal Kleren; and one sister, Phyllis (Robert) Pierson.

She now joins her husband, Everett; and her brothers, Herbert, Arnold, Ervin, Raymond and Harold Long.

Visitation will take place Thursday, Oct. 18, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. A funeral service celebrating Virginia’s life will begin at 7 p.m. at the funeral home. Rev. Mark Harkness, pastor of Kaneville United Methodist Church, will officiate. Private Family burial will take place on a future date.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in his name to benefit the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America. Checks may be made to the “Alzheimer’s Foundation of America” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119. Tributes and memories may also be forwarded to the family at the same address or through www.conleycare.com.

Mary Katherine Lacart

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Mary Katherine Lacart, 94, passed away peacefully surrounded by the love and prayers of her family on Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2012.

She was born in New Burnside, Ill., the oldest of John and Ellen Henehan’s four children.

Katherine was a 1936 graduate of Harrisburg High School. After graduating high school, she attended business school in Evansville, Ind.

Katherine began her career as a secretary for a young man, Rollin H. Lacart. Before long, Rollin had won her heart, and they were married on Oct. 31, 1944, in Chicago.

They were longtime residents of Aurora. After retirement, Katherine made her home in Elburn before moving to Park Manor in Batavia, where she made many treasured friends over the years.

After her children had grown, Katherine worked as a secretary for the Illinois Department of Public Health in Wheaton, Ill., until her retirement in 1983.

Katherine was a devoted member of the Elburn Congregational Church.

The most important part of life to Katherine was her family. She enjoyed watching her grandchildren and great-grandchildren grow up. She was an avid quilter. During her years living in Park Manor, Katherine had an active social life. She served on the flower committee and fellowship committee.

She is survived death by her children, Elenore (Richard) Eddington-MacFeely and John (Leanne) Lacart; grandchildren, Amy (Mike) Eddington Fehrenbacher, Mark (Lisa) Eddington, Benjamin Lacart and Sarah Lacart; great-grandchildren, Jake, Luke and Lindsay Fehrenbacher, and Ryan, Lily and Brendan Eddington.

She was preceded in death by her loving husband, Rollin; her brother, Michael, who died in infancy; her sisters, Helen Henehan and Clare Murrie; and her son-in-law, Larry Eddington.

A memorial visitation will take place at a later date.

A memorial has been established in Katherine’s name to benefit the Elburn Food Pantry. Checks may be made to the “Elburn Food Pantry” and mailed to P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at www.conleycare.com.

Neal L. Petrie

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Neal L. Petrie, 58, of Rochelle, Ill., passed away Monday, Oct. 1, 2012, in Hackensack, Minn.

Neal was born Aug. 5, 1954, in Sycamore, Ill., to Grover and Carrie (Gum) Petrie of Elburn. He graduated from Kaneland High School in 1972.

Neal retired from Laborers Local 109. He worked for Ray Petrie Construction, Metzger Bros. Construction, Gilbert Construction and Walker Construction. Neal loved working concrete and admiring a job well done.

He enjoyed fishing, and was an avid Minnesota Vikings fan. After Neal retired, he spent from spring to fall in his family’s cabin on the lake. He loved going out on his beloved boat with cousin and fishing buddy, Jack Johansen, to find that fish that got away.

Neal is survived by his mother, Carrie Petrie of Elburn; sister, Cara (Stephen) Bartel of DeKalb; niece, Abigail; son, Lt. Cpl. Nicholas (Kasey) Miller of Fallbrook, Calif.; and granddaughters, Brooklyn and Harley.

He was preceded in death by his father Grover; and brother, Kenton.

An informal day of honor for Neal took place in Hackensack, with the beautiful fall colors and tranquil lake waters that he loved so much.

Norma E. Reynolds

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Norma E. Reynolds, 80, of Sycamore, formerly of Maple Park, passed away suddenly yet peacefully on Saturday, Sept. 29, at OSF St. Anthony Medical Center in Rockford, Ill.

She was born July 3, 1932, in Maple Park, the daughter of Independence and Lillian (Lakin) Needham.

Norma grew up in Maple Park and attended local schools, where she became a basketball cheerleader before graduating with the class of 1950.

Jan. 17, 1947, was a fateful day in the life of both Norma and Toby Reynolds. She happened to be working at the Dairy Bar after a basketball game in Maple Park and caught Toby’s eye. Even though he was too shy to ask her out, a friend intervened and she became not only his first girlfriend, but his last. They were united in marriage on Oct. 11, 1951, just before Toby went into the Army.

Norma kept the home fires burning while Toby served his country, and when he returned from duty in 1953, they continued to make their home in DeKalb and, later, Maple Park.

They were blessed with five children, and Norma was kept busy not only caring for them, but also adding those special touches every day that made their house a home.

As the children grew, Norma honed her sewing skills to a master level. She taught sewing at Stretch and Sew and became a “fashion color analyst,” able to, at a glance, find the most complimentary styles and colors for anyone and everyone.

Her expertise as a seamstress benefitted her family, as well. She not only made their clothes, but also two wedding dresses when her children were married.

Norma provided her talents to the general public, as well, while running a resale shop, Twice Is Nice, in Sycamore for 10 years.

After retiring in 1997, she and Toby made 10 years of memories wintering in Mesa, Ariz., where she was able to swim nearly every day. They also made special trips to visit their grandchildren and great-grandchildren, who were spread to the four corners of the country.

She passed on her love of her Chicago Cubs, creating a family of loyal “die-hard” fans, cheering loudly through thick and thin.

Even in retirement, her hands were never idle as she knitted hundreds of helmet liners for the soldiers in Afghanistan. But what gave her the most joy was knitting clothes for her grandchildren and great-grandchildren with love in every stitch.

There was nobody better in the kitchen, either. Norma loved to bake, especially pies, making sure that everyone had their favorite.

She will always be remembered for the immense pride she took in her home, but more importantly, the never-ending love she had for her family.

She is survived by her loving husband of almost 61 years, Toby; five children, Valerie Reynolds, Steve (Cathy) Reynolds, Roger (Deb) Reynolds, Jim (Theresa) Reynolds and Scott (Sarma) Reynolds; seven grandchildren, Brian (Kristy) Reynolds and their daughter Olivia, Lisa (Michael) Brinkley and their children Savannah and Tanner, Joe (Casey) Reynolds, Kristi (Ryan) Kunkel and their son Jack, Sarah (Wes) Leos, Kyle Reynolds, Alex Reynolds and her daughter McKenzie; one sister, Nancy (Kenneth) Roof; many nieces, nephews and a family of friends.

She is preceded in death by her parents; four siblings, Lloyd Needham, Lois Kuchera, LaRelle Campbell and LaDelle Kenyon.

Visitation was held Tuesday at Conley Funeral Home in Elburn. A funeral service to celebrate her life was held Wednesday, also at the funeral home, with interment at Gardner Cemetery in Maple Park.

A memorial has been established in her name to benefit her favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “Norma Reynolds Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at www.conleycare.com, where you can also find Norma’s full-life story.

Rita Marie Cotti

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Rita Marie Cottie, 64, of Elburn, passed away at Delnor Hospital in Geneva on Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2012, following complications after years of battling an auto-immune deficiency disease similar to Muscular Dystrophy.

She was born April 4, 1948, in Aurora, the daughter of Truman “Curly” and Julia (Hjelmberg) Halsey.

Rita grew up in Elburn and attended local schools. She graduated from Kaneland High School with the class of 1966.

Following graduation, Rita followed her mother, along with many other members of her family, to Moline Malleable, an iron company in St. Charles, where she would spend over 20 years in the payroll department. Later, after Moline closed, Rita worked for a time at Curtis Breeding Farm, but spent the last 16 years at Illinois Hydraulic Corporation in Elgin.

Throughout her working years, she was never far from her husband, Jim, as he owned and operated several bars locally and in Wisconsin.

Appropriately enough, Rita met Jim Cotti while he was tending bar. The mirror behind him offered more than a reflection of themselves—it showed a future partnership where they would work and love, side by side, through thick and thin. They were united in marriage at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church on the hottest day of the year, July 11, 1970.

They began their new life together in Lily Lake for several years until they moved to Elburn in 1982 after purchasing the Second Inning Tavern in Elburn, which also was known as Ducky’s, and now known as Knucklehead’s.

Ft. Atkinson, Wis., was not only their home for several years, but also their place of business when they established Cotti’s Sunset Lodge on the lake. It wasn’t long before Elburn called them home again in 1996, where they continued to make memories with family and friends, their bonds only growing stronger with every day.

Growing up with three brothers, Rita balanced her feminine side with the ability to stand her ground and set her brothers straight when they got out of hand. She was especially good at dodging punishments, leaving the lions share to her rambunctious brothers.

Rita grew up with a huge heart and a tremendous love of children. She was generous to a fault and never met a stranger. She never made friends, but instead “adopted” people into the family. Rita also had a determined spirit that was quiet but strong. Her persistent nature helped her to overcome many obstacles in her life, and she was first in line to help others with their own trials.

Rita didn’t live in a material world. Rather, she lived in a world made more beautiful by the friendships made and kindness shone each and every day. Her loss will be felt throughout the community, but her memory lives on as a shining legacy for her family and friends to cherish forever.

She is survived by her loving husband of 42 years, Jim Cotti; one son, Chad Cotti, his wife, Kasi Koshollek, and their son, Edison; three brothers, Chris (Cindy) Halsey, Vern (Anita Hughes) Halsey and Rick (Kathy) Halsey; many nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews, and a community of friends stretching across Illinois and Wisconsin.

She is preceded in death by her parents and infant sister, Julie Lynn.

Visitation was held on Saturday, with a memorial service to celebrate her life following visitation, at Conley Funeral Home in Elburn. Rev. Lisa Kruse-Stafford, pastor of Cornerstone Methodist Church, officiated. A private cremation burial followed at a later date.

A memorial has been established in her name to benefit her favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “Rita Cotti Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at www.conleycare.com, where you can also find her full life story.

Janice (Gibbens) McGary

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Janice (Gibbens) McGary, 81, of Aurora, passed away peacefully at her home on Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012, after a short and courageous battle with leukemia. She was born on Dec. 31, 1930, in Hastings, Neb.

Jan, known lovingly as Nana, was a huge fan of the West Aurora Blackhawks, the Sandwich Indians and the St. Louis Cardinals.

Survivors include her husband of 60 years, Roy “Mac”/”Bumpa” McGary; two daughters, Maureen “Mo” (Bill) Faulkner of Montgomery, and Kathy (George) Reyes of Aurora; two sons, Mike McGary of Del Mar, Calif., and John (Suzy) McGary of Aurora; eight grandchildren, Marcie McCall, Stephanie (David) Fuentes and Jackie Reyes, Matt and Megan McGary, David, Scott and Chris McGary; one great-grandchild, Emma McCall; one brother, James (Jackie) Gibbens of Baker, La.; two sister-in-laws, Donna (Tom) Dwiggins of Batavia, and Rita (David) Berg of Greenfield, Ind.; and several nieces and nephews, including a special niece, Mary Guessfeld Conerly, and nephew, Jimmy Guessfeld.

She was preceded in death by a son, Joe McGary; a grandchild, Gina Reyes; her sister, Ann Alldredge; three nephews, Mike, Tom and David Guessfeld; and her parents, Florie and Joseph Forrest Gibbens.

Visitation was held on Sunday at The Healy Chapel in Sugar Grove. Funeral services were held on Monday at the funeral home. Interment took place at River Hills Memorial Park in Batavia.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be directed to the Arthritis Foundation or the American Cancer Society.

A special thanks to the care Janice received from the Provena Mercy Medical Center staff, as well as Cindy, Nikki and Gerri from Provena Hospice.

For further information, call (630) 466-1330 or visit www.healychapel.com to sign the online guestbook.

Mary Jean Myers

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Mary Jean Myers, 93, formerly of Sugar Grove, passed away Friday, Aug. 17, 2012, in Clarendon Hills, Ill. She was born Aug. 16, 1919, in Watseka, Ill., the daughter of Roy and Marguerite (Taliaferro) Stanton.

Mary Jean received her teacher’s certificate from Knox College and her bachelor’s degree from Aurora College. Mary Jean began teaching in one-room school houses in Iroquois County.

She met Don Myers in Watseka, where he was the high school band director. They were married in 1941. They lived in a number of towns throughout the south during World War II while Don completed his service as an Army Air Corp flight instructor. After the war, they settled in Don’s hometown of Sugar Grove.

Mary Jean taught middle school in the Kaneland School system until her retirement in 1970. She moved to Phelps, Wisc., in 1971 and opened Hackley House Antiques, which she operated with her husband until 1992.

She is survived by her daughters, Margaret (Lynn Schreiner) Gramley of Elgin, Ill., and Elizabeth (Bill) Chalberg of Downers Grove, Ill.; her grandchildren, Philip (Christine) Gramley, Steven (Leanne) Gramley, Jack Chalberg, Cassie Chalberg, George (Audrey) Chalberg, and Bill (Sarah) Chalberg Ill.; her great grandchildren, Lillian Gramley, Robert Gramley, Harry Chalberg, Keegan Chalberg, Connor Chalberg and Grace Chalberg; and her Thai exchange student daughter, Krongkeo Kannasoot.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband of 71 years, Don Myers, who passed away April 30, 2012; and her brothers, Richard and John Stanton.

A memorial service was held Saturday at The Healy Chapel, 370 Division Drive in Sugar Grove. Visitation was held prior to the service. Interment followed at Sugar Grove Cemetery.

For more information, call (630) 466-1330 or visit www.healychapel.com/ to sign the online guestbook.

Mary Jean Myers

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Mary Jean Myers, 93, formerly of Sugar Grove, passed away August 17, 2012 in Clarendon Hills, Ill. She was born August 16, 1919 in Watseka, Illinois, the daughter of Roy and Marguerite (Taliaferro) Stanton.

Mary Jean received her teacher’s certificate from Knox College and her Bachelor’s Degree from Aurora College. Mary Jean began teaching in one-room school houses in Iroquois County. She met Don Myers in Watseka where he was the high school band director. They were married in 1941. They lived in a number of towns throughout the south during WWII while Don completed his service as an Army Air Corp flight instructor. After the war, they settled in Don’s home town of Sugar Grove. Mary Jean taught middle school in the Kaneland School system until her retirement in 1970. Moving to Phelps, Wisconsin in 1971, Mary Jean opened Hackley House Antiques and ran that business with her husband until 1992.

She is survived by her daughters, Margaret (Lynn Schreiner) Gramley of Elgin, IL, and Elizabeth (Bill) Chalberg of Downers Grove, IL; her grandchildren, Philip (Christine) Gramley, Steven (Leanne) Gramley, Jack Chalberg, Cassie Chalberg, George (Audrey) Chalberg, and Bill (Sarah) Chalberg III; her great grandchildren, Lillian Gramley, Robert Gramley, Harry Chalberg, Keegan Chalberg, Connor Chalberg, Grace Chalberg; and her Thai exchange student daughter, Krongkeo Kannasoot.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband of 71 years, Don Myers, who passed away April 30th, 2012; and her brothers Richard and John Stanton.

A Memorial service will be held Saturday 11:00 a.m. September 22, 2012 at The Healy Chapel, 370 Division Dr. Sugar Grove, IL. Visitation will be held from 10:00 a.m. until the time of service at the funeral home. Interment will take place at Sugar Grove Cemetery. For further information please call (630) 466-1330 or visit our website at http://www.healychapel.com/ to sign the online guestbook.

James “Jim” Darwin Maier

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James “Jim” Darwin Maier, 87, went home peacefully to be with the Lord on Friday, Sept. 14, 2012, surrounded by his loving family and those holding him in their prayers, as he was reunited with his son, Rex, who preceded him in death on June 10, 1970.

Jim was born on June 3, 1925, in Oswego, Ill., the son of Andrew and Luella (Wolf) Maier.

After graduating from Sugar Grove High School in 1943, Jim served his country in the United States Army during World War II. Upon returning home from the service, he married his lifelong partner and friend, Florence Hohmann Maier, on March 6, 1948, and they spent the next 64 years together. He was a member of the Grace Community Fellowship Church, asking the Lord into his heart as a child, and serving Him faithfully by sharing his love of our Lord and his faith with many.

Jim was a farmer his entire life, living on his farm since he was 15 years old. He enjoyed farming, as well as motorcycling, trap shooting and square dancing. He sold Husqvarna and Penton motorcycles, and was a lifelong member of both the American Motorcycle Association and the National Rifle Association.

Jim and Florence took many trips to Branson, Mo., where they enjoyed several musical shows.

Jim was a great encourager and supporter of his children and grandchildren, attending many sporting events and activities of which they took part. He truly loved his family and was always there for them.

Jim is survived by his wife, Florence Maier; his son, Terry (Denise) Maier; his daughter, Charlene (Larry) Driscoll; his grandchildren, Eric (Shari) Maier, Tracy (Kyle) Johnson, Bradley (Kathy) Driscoll, Brian Driscoll and Brittany Driscoll; his great-grandchildren, Anna and Andrew Maier, Elijah, Isaac and Abigail Johnson, and Jackson Driscoll; his sisters, Mary Lou Maier and Carol (Dick) Powell; as well as numerous family and friends. He was a loving husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather and friend.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Andrew and Luella Maier; and his brother, Charles Maier.

A funeral service was held on Tuesday at the Larson-Nelson Funeral Home in Yorkville. Pastor Jim Harper officiated. Interment followed at the Kaneville Township Cemetery in Kaneville.

Jim’s family would like to express their sincere gratitude to his Pastor, Jim Harper, their Grace Community Fellowship Church family, friends and relatives, and Vistas Team 703 for their excellent nursing care of Jim.

Memorials in Jim’s name may be directed to Grace Community Fellowship Church, 17081 Owens Road, Maple Park, IL 60151, The American Cancer Society, P.O. Box 22718, Oklahoma City, OK 73123-1718, or to the Kaneville Township Cemetery, 2S101 Harter Road, Kaneville, IL 60144.

Ronald A. “Ron” Molitor

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Ronald A. “Ron” Molitor, 65, of Elburn, passed away following a long, hard-fought battle with Leukemia, which included a stem-cell transplant. Though he struggled over the years, Ron found everlasting peace on Sept. 17, 2012, at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago.

After graduation from Kaneland High School, Ron served two years in the U.S. Army before a long, fulfilling career in construction and farming.

He is survived by his loving wife of 43 years, Carol (Lake) Molitor; three children, Andrew Molitor, Paul (Laura) Molitor and Lisa (James) White; five grandchildren and Jacob Molitor, Alyssa Molitor, Sarah Molitor, Avery White and Oakley White; eight siblings, Peter Molitor, Mary Stenson, Margie Raines, Bob Molitor, Don Molitor, Tom Molitor, Norma Zollers and Pam Anderson; many nieces, nephews and a family of friends.

He is preceded in death by his parents and two siblings, Shirley Thomas and Jim Molitor.

Visitation was held Wednesday at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. A funeral to celebrate his life will take place Thursday, Sept. 20, at 10 a.m. at the funeral home, with an hour of visitation prior to the service. Rev. Eric Mangek, pastor of the Victory Baptist Church, DeKalb, will officiate, with interment to follow at Fairview Cemetery in DeKalb.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in Ron’s name to benefit his favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “Ron Molitor Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at www.conleycare.com, where you can also find his full life story.

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