Lorraine L. Miller, 87, of Vigil, formerly of Dundee, Ill., passed away at DeKalb County Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, DeKalb, on Saturday, Dec. 26, 2009.
She was born on the family farm in Virgil on April 3, 1922, the daughter of Michael J. and Elizabeth K. Petit.
Lorraine grew up in Virgil and attended the S. S. Peter & Paul schools. She worked on the farm and in the home while the boys were off to war. In between milking the cows and cooking meals, Lorraine also worked at Elgin Watch Factory.
Lorraine loved to dance and spent many nights at The Grange, a dance hall on Plank Road. It was there that she caught a certain gentlemanâ€™s eye and shared a dance with Bob Miller. They were united in marriage on Oct. 6, 1951, at S.S. Peter & Paul Catholic Church.
They began their new life together on the Miller family farm in Dundee, Ill. They would spend the rest of their married life making memories and raising their daughter, Mary. She worked across the road for a time, making beds at their family-owned Dun-El View Motel in Dundee, Ill. When Bob passed away in 1995, Lorraine moved in with her niece, Mary Hindenburg, in Sycamore for a time before building a home in Virgil across the street from her childhood church and school, and next door to the old convent.
Lorraine was a faithful member of S.S. Peter & Paul Catholic Church and was a past member of the Altar and Rosary Society at St. Catherine Catholic Church. She started a sewing club, was involved in Country Cousins as well as the Kane County Home Extension. She also was a volunteer at St. Joseph Hospital in Elgin. Lorraine was active in Rural Life, a diocesan farm group.
Lorraine entertained everyone at anytime and possessed the gift of hospitality. She loved her time playing cards with the â€œVirgil Card Clubâ€ every week at different homes. She was â€œMrs. Clausâ€ to all her nieces and nephews, not only at Christmas time but all year round. In the summers she had pool parties and invited her family, and many times the rest of her neighbors as well. Lorraine loved to knit and crochet and passed on her wisdom and talent to the next generation.
In their younger years, she and Robert loved to travel on pilgrimages to different Marian Shrines around the country hosted by her brother, Fr. Clement Petit. Lorraine was the family historian and could be found behind the camera at many family functions chronicling the events for future generations. The Petit family reunions that she and Earlene Petit began continue annually. They also made sure never to miss a wedding or a funeral, no matter where they were being held.
Whenever her nieces and nephews came into town, there was no lap more comfortable or available for babies to snuggle and nap. For her granddaughter and her friends, tea parties were the norm and were complete with cups, saucers, tea (that was really Kool-Aid) and cakes.
She now leaves her daughter, Mary (Steve) Lemaster of Elgin, Ill.; two grandchildren, Kate (James) Freestrom of Sycamore and Jeremy Lemaster of Elgin, Ill.; three siblings, Frank M. Petit of St. Charles, Sister Marie Petit of St. Francis Convent, Milwaukee, Wis., and Peter M. Petit of Virgil; many nieces and nephews that were all close to her heart, especially Clete Zang and Mary Hindenburg; and a countryside of friends who will miss her dearly.
She now joins her parents; husband, Bob Miller; four sisters, Louise (Petit) Zang, Regina Petit, Julia (Petit) Dinges, and Sr. Donna Petit O.S.F.; five brothers, Herman, Clement, Carl and Michael; and one other brother, Michael, who died in infancy.
Visitation was from 4 to 8 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2009, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn, 60119. A mass to celebrate her life was held at S.S. Peter & Paul Catholic Church, Virgil, at 10 a.m., with a time of visitation from 9 to 9:45 a.m. at the church prior to Mass Wednesday, Dec. 30. Fr. Perfecto Vasquez, pastor of the church, officiated, and interment followed at River Valley Memorial Garden Cemetery in Dundee, Ill.
A memorial has been established in her name to benefit Provena St. Joseph Hospital or St. Francis of Assisi Convent. Checks may be made directly to either of the charities and mailed to Lorraine L. Miller 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.