Category Archives: Community

Church News for Jan. 21

Haiti: An urgent call for help
Sugar Grove—Sugar Grove United Methodist Church, 176 Main St., invites the public to respond to the earthquake victims in Haiti by purchasing and bringing to the church new items from the following list of personal care items: One gallon size resealable plastic bags, hand towels, washcloths, combs (large and sturdy), nail files or fingernail clippers (no emery boards), bath-size bars of soap, toothbrushes (single adult-size brushes, individually wrapped), adhesive plastic strip sterile bandages, toothpaste (4.5 oz or larger—expiration date must be at least one year in future). These items will be assembled into kits and distributed in Haiti by United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR).

People wanting to make financial donations can do so directly online at www.umcorhaiti.org for general Haiti relief or to www.intlchildcare.org to support relief efforts through Grace Children’s Hospital in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Checks can also be made payable to “Sugar Grove UMC,” designating Haiti Relief in the memo and mailed to Sugar Grove United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 226, Sugar Grove, Illinois 60554.

The church is located one block west of Route 47 and one block south of Cross Street, across from the Sugar Grove Community House.

For questions, call the church at (630) 466-4501 or visit to www.sgumc.net.

Calvary Episcopal features speaker on Food for the Poor
Batavia—Calvary Episcopal Church in Batavia welcomes the Rev. W. Michael Cassell to worship services on Sunday, Jan. 24, speaking on Food for the Poor, a ministry which provides direct relief to the poor throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Cassell’s presentation is particularly timely in light of the recent earthquake devastation in Haiti, one of the countries served by the agency.

Calvary is located at 222 S. Batavia Ave., on the corner of Route 31 and Main Street.  Worship services are at 8 and 10:15 a.m. For further information, call (630) 879-3378.

Joseph ‘Joe’ F. Bisztriczky

Joseph “Joe” F. Bisztriczky, 75, of Elburn, passed away at Central DuPage Hospital, Winfield, Ill., on Jan. 12, 2010, following complications from a stroke he suffered on Dec. 24, 2009.

He was born on Nov. 26, 1934, in Gyomro, Hungary, the son of Joseph and Julia (Hutwagner) Bisztriczky.

Joe grew up in Gyomro and attended local schools. At that time, children were only required to attend school for eight years, but Joe continued his secondary education into the 12th year in what we would now call “Pre-Med.” Due to family hardships, he was unable to finish his studies, which frustrated him greatly. Instead of giving up, he completed an apprenticeship as a loom fixer in the textiles industry.

It was this change in vocation that gave Joe the opportunity to meet the love of his life, Elizabeth Ivan, who also worked in the textile industry in her hometown of Szentgotthard. They were united in marriage on Sept. 18, 1954.

Two years later, Joe and Elizabeth escaped under gunfire during a revolution against the suffocating Communist rule in November of 1956 and lived in a refugee camp in Austria until their immigration to Canada on April 22, 1957.

It was in Lindsay, Ontario, that they were blessed with a son, Joseph, named in honor of his father and grandfather. In December 1965, the now-growing family settled in Reedsburg, Wis., where they welcomed a daughter, Julie. Because of the limited job opportunities in the textile industry, the family moved where Joe could find work. Over the years, they made their home in Baraboo, Wis., where their second daughter, Jeanne, made their family complete in September 1968.

Eventually the family moved to Millington, Ill., for a time and then to Plano, to be closer to Joe’s mother, who also escaped Hungary in 1956. In 1992, after the children were grown, Joe and Elizabeth moved to Oswego. Seven years later they made their final home in Elburn, where they continued to make memories, which now included many grandchildren.

Joe was a faithful member of St. Gall Catholic Church in Elburn for many years.

Joe was happiest outdoors fishing, hunting, tending to his fruit trees or just taking long hikes and taking in all Mother Nature had to offer. His dedication to his craft of looming in the textile industry helped him construct his own loom where rugs, placemats, table runners and more were born from his imagination.

Joe also had a passion for history and life in the Wild Wild West. His musical tastes rarely strayed from Pavarotti, and in his spare time you couldn’t find a better opponent across the chessboard.

Nothing made Joe happier than being with his family, reading to his grandchildren and telling stories of his childhood. His memory will live on in the hearts of his family, in the stories of his youth and in the pieces of wisdom given over the years, including the saying, “What you learn is something that no one can ever take away from you.”

He now leaves his loving wife, Elizabeth; three children, Joseph Bisztriczky of Elburn, Julie (Tony) Crabb of Maple Park, and Jeanne Bisztriczky and her husband Robert Steller of Lake In The Hills, Ill.; five grandchildren, Megan Crabb, Jonathan Crabb, Madelyn Crabb, Zachary Steller and Matthew Crabb; two step-grandchildren, Rachael Steller and Alexander Steller; one sister, Ilona Bukovits of Mende, Hungary; many nieces, nephews; and an extended family in Hungary.

He now joins his parents and two grandsons, Daniel and Benjamin Crabb, who both died in infancy.

Visitation was from 10 to 11 a.m., with a memorial mass to celebrate his life following at 11 a.m., at St. Gall Catholic Church, Elburn, on Monday, Jan. 18. Interment followed at St. Gall Cemetery, Elburn.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in his name to benefit his favorite charities, including the Arbor Day Foundation. Checks may be made to the “Joseph F. Bisztriczky 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.

Beatrice M. (Weimer) Hunter

Beatrice M. (Weimer) Hunter, 94, of LaFox, Ill., passed away surrounded by the love and prayers of her family, Saturday, Jan. 16, 2010, at Heritage Manor, Elgin, Ill.

She was born on April 20, 1915, in West Chicago, the fifth child born to George and Catherine Weimer. By the time Beatrice was 11, she had lost both parents and an older sister.

The family, then numbering five children ranging in age from 9 to 23, remained together in their West Chicago home with the eldest sibling as their only provider. Although they were eventually joined by a widowed aunt who helped maintain the family unit, each child went to work as soon as they were able and helped support the family. To their credit, every one of them graduated from West Chicago high school.

Bea married John Hunter of La Fox on July 7, 1945. They made their first home in Geneva for a time until 1953, when they purchased John’s parents’ home in LaFox. Tragically, John passed away in that same year, and Bea worked hard to keep their family home.

Through the ensuing years, she succeeded and continued to reside there until her death. Bea loved the La Fox area, where she was surrounded by fields of corn or beans. She found great pleasure in gardening and tending her family home, where she hosted many family gatherings and entertained her beloved grandchildren. Bea was also a lifelong Chicago Cubs fan and seldom missed a game.

She is survived by one daughter, Judy Hanson of St. Charles; two sons, John (Kathy) Hunter of Oak Forest, Ill., and Joe (Deb) Hunter of St. Charles; a step-daughter, Barbara (Skip) Lassen of West Chicago; nine grandchildren, Jeff (Jenn) Hanson of Elburn, Matt (Steph) Hanson of Virgil, and Chris (Alexis) Hanson of South Elgin; Lauren (Mike) Corsi of Shorewood and Adam Hunter of Oak Forest, Jennifer (Jeff) Fritsch of Aurora, and Phil Lawson, Kevin Lawson and Jonathan Hunter, all of St. Charles.

In addition she leaves a growing family of great-grandchildren; one sister, Rosemary Welter of Elmhurst, Ill., many nieces, nephews and a close family of friends.

Bea was preceded in death by her parents; her husband; two sisters, Katherine and Florence; and two brothers, Frances and George.

At her request, there will be no visitation, and interment is private.

A memorial has been established in Bea’s name to benefit CNS Hospice, 690 East North Ave., Carol Stream, IL 60188-2178 and The Neediest Children’s Fund, in care of WGN Radio, 435 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60611. Memorials checks may be made and mailed directly to either charity. Tributes and memories may also be forwarded to the family through her obituary at www.conleycare.com.

Your wedding: Keeping it small

While some couples go all out and invite everyone they know to their wedding, others opt for a smaller, more intimate affair. Although they can be less costly, small weddings are not always easy to pull off. Whittling the guest list to a select few can be difficult and cause conflict among family members. If you would like to keep your wedding small, you need to be aware of the pitfalls and approach the initial planning with tact.

You must decide first just how small you want your wedding to be—10 people, 20 to 40 people, 100 people? The smaller your guest list, the more lightly you will have to tread. There will be people who expect to be invited to your wedding and they will be hurt and angry when they do not receive an invitation. You can accommodate for this by having a large bridal shower or post-wedding party and inviting everyone not invited to your wedding to that.

With number in hand, you can turn your focus to whom to invite. Depending upon how small your target number is, you may have to make some hard decisions like excluding extended family or children from your guest list. Whatever your decision, be prepared for conflict. No doubt there will be some hurt feelings. There might also be pressure to change your mind and have a larger wedding. Don’t give in. It is your wedding. If you want it to be small, you should have it that way.

After you have completed your guest list, make a list of everyone you couldn’t invite and find a way to let them know why they weren’t invited. Send them a note, shoot them an e-mail or give them a call. If you intend to have a large bridal shower, you may be able to wait until then to let everyone know that you will be having a small wedding.

When letting others know of your decision, be tactful. Let them know that while you would have liked to invite everyone, you chose not to for personal, financial or other reasons. Reassure them that they are still very much a part of your life and thank them for everything they have done for you.

In spite of your best efforts, some people will not understand why they were not invited. They will be hurt, angry and disappointed, so much so that they may refuse to attend your bridal shower or post-wedding party. Try not to let it get to you. Give them time to cool off and focus on making your wedding the best that it can be.

Choosing to have a small wedding is easy; implementing the idea, on the other hand, takes work. Be prepared and forge ahead with a smile on your face.

Leon F. Gramley

Leon F. Gramley, 66, of Kaneville, died unexpectedly Friday, Jan. 15, 2010, at Delnor Hospital, Geneva.

He was born Oct. 31, 1943, the son of Benjamin and Frances (Flanders) Gramley in Aurora.

Leon grew up in Kaneville and spent his whole life making memories and taking care of his community. He attended local schools and graduated from Kaneland High School in 1962. He attended Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa, for a time before graduating from DeVry School of Electronics in Chicago.

Leon married Margaret Myers in 1965, and they were blessed with two sons, Philip in June of 1967 and Stephen in November of 1969. In later years, Leon would say he met the “love of his life” in 1991, when he met Mary Fecht, a nurse who worked at Delnor Community Hospital. They were married a year later on Sept. 6, 1992, and shared the love of a lifetime, going to concerts and traveling extensively with Disney World high on their list of favorite destinations.

Shortly after graduation, he enlisted in the United States Army and proudly served his country during the Vietnam War. In December of 1967, Leon returned to civilian life and worked for Illinois Bell. In 1971, he began farming alongside his brother Elmer on the family farm in Kaneville.

Leon was a volunteer fireman with the Kaneville Fire Department, later becoming an EMT and paramedic with Elburn Ambulance for 13 years. He served on the Kaneville Township Board and was elected Kaneville Township Supervisor in 1994. Leon was also the Vice President and sexton for Kaneville Cemetery and was very active in the Kaneville Memorial Day service, serving in the Color Guard and Honor Guard, as well as identifying the graves of all the veterans, making sure no one was ever forgotten.

He devoted his life to the service of his community. Leon’s thoughts were always of family and community first. Whether it was answering phone calls at all hours, going to the community center late into the evening whenever there was a problem, or checking his answering machine nightly while on vacation just in case there was someone in need of his help.

He also was the driving force behind Kaneville Township’s designation as a village, dedicating untold hours until it was official in 2007.

Even in death, Leon gave to his community by donating his eyes to those without sight. He was an avid NASCAR fan, cheering on Dale Earnhardt with every turn.

Leon was a man of many talents, though few knew that while growing up Leon took tap dancing for a time and played the French horn as well as the piano. He also was proud of his collection of Mickey Mouse ties, hats and watches.

Every Christmas, Leon made the trip to Marshall Fields, now Macy’s, and brought home two shopping bags full of Frango Mints, which he loved to pass out to family and friends, but his generosity waned when it came to his favorite, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

Leon was always fixing anything for anyone, from friends to his granddaughters, who were always saying, “Papa fix it!”, though the end result was always “neat and tidy” it oftentimes included a fair share of electrical tape and form wire. A “papa band aid” was a folded napkin and electrical tape, which the granddaughters proudly displayed. He will be remembered by many different people for many different things for generations to come, but when anyone thinks about Leon, they all think of the same thing, “Kaneville.”

He now leaves his loving wife Mary of Kaneville, three sons, Philip (Christine) Gramley of Chicago, Stephen (Leanne) Gramley and their children Lillian and Robert, of Kaneville, and Albert (Lori) Fecht and their children, Joshua, Hannah and Emilee, of Leland, Ill.; one brother, Elmer (Janet) Gramley and their daughter Sara, of Kaneville, and a countryside full of friends.

He now joins his parents, Ben and Frances Gramley, who preceded him in death.

Visitation will be from 2 to 6 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 21, at Kaneville United Methodist Church, Kaneville. A remembrance service will begin at 6 p.m., where friends and family are encouraged to share their favorite memory of Leon.

A funeral service to celebrate his life will be Friday, Jan. 22, at St. David Episcopal Church at the corner of Randall and Illinois in Aurora, at 1 p.m. The Rev. Susan Holstrom, pastor of the church, will officiate, and interment will follow at Kaneville Cemetery, Kaneville.

Those unable to attend the services at either church may view them live at www.conleycare.com beginning five minutes prior to each service. The services will also be available in an on-demand format 24 to 48 hours after the services at the same website.

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

Kathlene G. Porter

Kathlene G. Porter, 61, of Elburn, went to be with her Savior, The Lord Jesus Christ, on Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2010, at Provena Mercy Hospital in Aurora, Ill. She was born on Jan. 22, 1948, in Chicago, to Richard and Shirland Groh.

Kathy’s passion was for God, her family and her students. She never missed an opportunity to share the message of God’s love with others. Her faith and dedication touched countless lives, including her many kindergarten students at Parkview Christian Academy in Yorkville and her church family at First Presbyterian in Aurora. She cherished the time she spent with her family and loved ones, and constantly nurtured and supported them.

She is survived by her loving husband, Robert Porter of Elburn; parents, Richard and Shirland Groh of Roselle, Ill.; children, Vicky (Gary) Spratt and their children, Kailey, Ryan, Aiden and Casey, of Yorkville, and Brian (Jamie) Porter and their children, Kyle and Allison, of Batavia; siblings, Carol Fitzpatrick of Roselle, Chris (Tonya) Groh of Lima, Ohio, Nancy (Arnie) Lamoso of Cary, Ill., and Janet (Howard) Rosenbach of Huntley, Ill.; Robert’s siblings, Dorothy (Dick) Barclay of Montgomery, Mary (Oscar) Sliva of Galesburg, Ill., Kathy (Tim) Borgstrom of West Bend, Wis., Margaret (Roy) Wackerlin of Oswego, and Ginger (Jeff) Ellis of Aurora; and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her son, Daniel Porter; father and mother-in-law, Robert and Jeanette Porter; grandparents, Sarah Crawford, Fred and Emma Groh; and niece, Amy Berkeland.

Services were held at 10 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 18, at First Presbyterian Church, 325 E. Downer Place, Aurora, IL 60506. The family greeted guests on Sunday, Jan. 17, from 4 to 6 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m., also at First Presbyterian Church.

Arrangements were handled by The Healy Chapel, 332 W. Downer Place, Aurora, IL 60506. For information, please call (630) 897-9291 or visit www.healychapel.com to sign the online guestbook.

McNamara, Hand to wed

Arlette McNamara of Elburn announced the engagment of her daughter, Lynette, to Zachary Hand, the son of Timothy and Sandra Hand of Hillsboro, Ill.

The bride-to-be is a 2002 graduate of Kaneland High School and a graduate of the University of Illinois. She is employed by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois.

The future groom is a 1999 graduate of Hillsboro High School and a graduate of the University of Illinois. He is employed by C.H. Robinson.

The wedding ceremony will be on June 5, 2010, at Holy Cross Catholic Church.

Albert Lawrence ‘Larry’ Suggett, Jr.

Albert Lawrence “Larry” Suggett, Jr., 86, of Kaneville, passed peacefully from this life to eternal life on Monday, Jan. 4, 2010, at his home in Kaneville, surrounded by the love of his family.

Larry was born on March 23, 1923, in Chicago, the son of Albert Lawrence Sr. and Nigel Naomi (Baer) Suggett.
He grew up in Evanston and attended local schools.

Larry was drafted into the U.S. Army Air Force Engineers only one day after his marriage to Elva Beck on Nov. 26, 1942, in the Maple Park Methodist Church. He served for three years, serving most of his time in the South Pacific Theater before being honorably discharged on Dec. 11, 1945.

Larry returned to his wife in Maple Park, and they began raising a family. Larry found work in the construction trade for 10 years, using the knowledge he gained in the service. In 1956, Larry began working in sales full time. He worked for many companies over the years, realizing his gift for sales.

His last job was for Equipto Electronics in Aurora, where his expertise increased and he became national sales manager. They began with 326 customers, and before he left 10 years later, they had served over 1,300 customers and increased their business by $1 million dollar a year. From “mom and pop” companies to fortune 500 companies and the government, Larry served them all faithfully, and upon his retirement in August of 1985, he had 105 sales persons under him throughout the United States and Canada. He was a man devoted to his work, but his family was his prized possession. Following his retirement, Larry loved to take many trips with his wife all around the U.S. and Canada.

He was a member and Past Master of the Maple Park Masonic Lodge for many years before becoming a member of the DeKalb Masonic Lodge when the two joined in the early 1950s.

A lifelong student, Larry was never content to rest on his high school diploma. In 1961, Larry gave of his time to disadvantaged youth at the Boys Home, helping them to read. In addition to taking 12 classes through the military, he continued to take more than 20 different courses throughout his life at Waubonsee Community College. He then turned from student into teacher from 1986 to 1988, when he taught an antique class at Waubonsee Community College for a time, where they sent him to various locations in the community including Elburn, the Tri-cities, the College of DuPage and on to Chicago.

In 1994, he made display cases for the Schingoethe Center to display the Schingoethe Indian artifacts, which is located at Dunham Hall at Aurora University. Another project that Larry volunteered to take on was the rehabilitation of a home in Aurora that became the original Hesed House. Later, he specialized in restoration of Victorian homes in the Fox Valley.

In his spare time, Larry enjoyed staying at his “second home” in Nigel’s Point in Land O’ Lakes, Wis., cooking every meal over an open fire in the summer and navigating the snowcapped peaks and valleys on his skis in the winter. Later, he made the local trip to Villa Olivia to satisfy his cravings. In his younger years, he indulged in his passion for speed by flying his Cessna ZO6 and driving his Jaguar K150 whenever he could. He also was a faithful Santa’s helper, dressed to the hilt in red and white, bringing the joy of Christmas to all he met. His hands crafted hundreds of letters to friends and family, and his eye for taking pictures produced priceless gifts for many.

He leaves now two daughters, Susan Joy (Charles) Gates of Campton, Teri Ann Suggett of Kaneville; seven grandchildren, Kimberly Skaper of Sycamore, Kelly (Mark) McCarney of Aurora, Carrie, Tanya and Chuck Gates of Campton, and Joscelyn and Chanel Suggett of Kaneville; five great-grandchildren, Andrew and Steven Skaper, Shawn, Sharon and Christine McCarney; one great-great grandson, Michael Skaper; one step-sister, Dorothy Anderson of Southern Illinois; and a community of friends.

He joins now his wife, Elva; one daughter, Sharon K. Orr; and his parents, who preceded him in death.

Visitation was from 3 to 4:30 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 10, 2010, at Kaneville United Methodist Church, 46W764 Main Street Road, Kaneville, IL 60144. A funeral to celebrate his life followed the visitation. The Rev. Jason Turner, pastor of the church, officiated, and private family interment followed at Kaneville Cemetery on Monday, Jan. 11.

A memorial has been established in his name to benefit his favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “Albert Lawrence “Larry” Suggett Jr.” 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.

Seger completes Navy basic training

Navy Seaman Recruit Kiaya M. Seger, daughter of Teresa M. Seger-Yeggy of Elburn, recently completed U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes, Ill.

During the eight-week program, Seger completed a variety of training, which included classroom study and practical instruction on naval customs, first aid, firefighting, water safety and survival, and shipboard and aircraft safety. An emphasis was also placed on physical fitness.

The capstone event of boot camp is Battle Stations. This exercise gives recruits the skills and confidence they need to succeed in the fleet. Battle Stations is designed to galvanize the basic warrior attributes of sacrifice, dedication, teamwork and endurance in each recruit through the practical application of basic Navy skills and the core values of Honor, Courage and Commitment. Its distinctly ‘Navy’ flavor was designed to take into account what it means to be a Sailor.

Seger is a 2008 graduate of Cedar Falls High School of Cedar Falls, Iowa.

Flanagan graduates from basic training

Army Sgt. Lyle F. Flanagan graduated from basic combat training at Fort Jackson, Columbia, S.C.

During the nine weeks of training, the soldier studied the Army mission, history, tradition and core values, physical fitness, and received instruction and practice in basic combat skills, military weapons, chemical warfare and bayonet training, drill and ceremony, marching, rifle marksmanship, armed and unarmed combat, map reading, field tactics, military courtesy, military justice system, basic first aid, foot marches, and field training exercises.

He is the son of Joan Flanagan of N. First St., Elburn, and Charles Flanagan of Lakeside Drive, St. Charles.

Flanagan graduated in 1996 from Kaneland High School and received a bachelor’s degree in 2002 from Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff.

Deveny graduates from basic training

Air Force Airman Alyssa A. Deveny graduated from basic military training at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas.

The airman completed an intensive, eight-week program that included training in military discipline and studies, Air Force core values, physical fitness, and basic warfare principles and skills.

Airmen who complete basic training earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force.

She is the daughter of Tammy Caltagirone of 59th Ave., St. Charles, and Charles Deveny of Beith Road, Elburn.

Deveny is a 2009 graduate of St. Charles North High School.

Church News for Dec. 31

St. Gall announces New Year’s schedule
Elburn—The New Year’s schedule for St. Gall Church in Elburn will consist of three different Masses to observe the Feast of the Solemnity of Mary. The first liturgy will be a Mass of anticipation on Thursday, Dec. 31, at 4:30 p.m. Masses for New Year’s Day are at 9:30 and 11 a.m.

For information, call (630) 365-6030.

Cancer survivor shares message at Sugar Grove UMC
Sugar Grove—Young mother and wife Krissie Dowd will tell her story of fighting cancer and her journey toward wholeness at Sugar Grove United Methodist Church on Sunday, Jan. 3.

Krissie will speak at both the 8 and 10:30 a.m. worship services. The public is invited to come to 176 Main St., Sugar Grove, across the street from the Sugar Grove Community House.

Calvary Church West offers divorce support group, video series
Sugar Grove—Calvary Church West, 1600 Beta Drive, Sugar Grove, will offer a multi-week divorce support group to find help, discover hope and experience healing. The group will begin on Tuesday, Jan. 5, from 7 to 9 p.m. and continue on Jan. 12 and Jan. 19.

Child care is available. Call the church office for more information at (630) 466-4950.

Paul F. Schuppner

Paul F. Schuppner, 82, of Virgil, passed away at his home surrounded by the love and care of his family on Sunday morning, Dec. 27, 2009.

He was born Aug. 11, 1927, the son of Frederick and Florence (Lenz) Schuppner in Elgin.

Paul spent his first years in Elgin and attended local schools, but graduated in 1945 from Plato Center High School, where he was a stand-out basketball player. Paul was a farmer his whole life, and it began on Witt’s farm.

Paul played basketball at Plato Center, but it was a certain cheerleader for Maple Park that caught his eye. Soon a courtship began, and in 1946, Paul and Adeline Helmuth were united in marriage on the Howard farm on Howard Road in Maple Park.

They began their new life together with Adeline’s parents in an apartment while Paul worked at Turner Brass. Then in a few years, Paul became manager on a farm in Sycamore for a time before finding a dairy farm in Virgil in 1951. After renting on a few different farms in the area, they moved into their present home on Meredith Road in 1981. They saved for 35 years to buy their home, and the moment they turned the key, it was theirs and theirs alone.

Paul was a farmer at heart, but later he would add driving a school bus to his daily regimen in 1959 in Maple Park, and spent the next 38 years making sure his charges were delivered to and from school safely. His rules were strict but fair, and many students who never rode his bus heard of his lore. He retired from farming in 1991 and driving a bus in December of 1997. Paul spent the next few years concentrating on making memories with his family and helping his son tend to his land and dairy cattle.

Paul was a past member of the Kane County Farm Bureau and the Loyal Order of the Moose, St. Charles.

Paul was a man who knew what he wanted and how he wanted it done. When a CB was brought in to help his farms communicate, there was no doubt that his “handle” would be “The Boss.” If Paul had a tough exterior and demeanor at times, it only provided cover for the biggest caring heart a man could have. No one knew that better than his family, especially his grandchildren and great-grandchildren, whom he cheered on at every possible opportunity at school functions and activities, including hundreds of basketball games. He loved to dance with his “honey” at the Blue Moon and play cards in a club full of friends and neighbors. In 1974, he and Adeline went to Hawaii and Las Vegas in 1975, making memories with every mile.

He now leaves his wife of 62 years, Adeline of Virgil; his son, Steve (Ruth Banas) Schuppner of Cortland, five grandchildren, David Schuppner and his children, Hannah and Kaleb, of Elburn; Paul W. (Nicole) Schuppner of East Lansing, Mich.; and Andrea (Josh) Pethoud and their daughter, Maysen of DeKalb; Renee (Adam) Real-Banas of Minneapolis, Minn.; and Andy (Shana) Banas of Roseville, Minn.; and many nieces, nephews, cousins and a host of friends.

He now joins his parents; one son, Edward; one sister, Marilyn Schuppner; one grandson, Brian Schuppner; and one brother-in-law, Warren Klingenberg, who preceded him in death.

Visitation will be from 2 to 6 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 3, 2010, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn, IL 60119. A funeral to celebrate his life will be held at the funeral home on Monday, Jan. 4, 2010, at 11 a.m. The Rev. Ernst Rex, pastor of Grace Lutheran Church, Lily Lake, and the Rev. Paul Meyer, pastor of Cornerstone Methodist Church, Plato Center, will both officiate, and interment will follow at Blackberry Township Cemetery, Elburn.

A memorial has been established in his name to benefit his favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “Paul Schuppner 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.

Lorraine L. Miller

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 gentleman’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 “Virgil Card Club” every week at different homes. She was “Mrs. Claus” 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.

Donald ‘Dutch’ Phillips Jr.

Donald “Dutch” Phillips Jr., 66, of Kaneville, passed away following a fierce battle with pancreatic cancer, Saturday, Dec. 26, 2009, at his home surrounded by the love and prayers of his family. Dutch was a man of simple tastes with a smile always on his face who never let life’s problems get him down.

He was born Sept. 3, 1943, the son of Donald Sr. and Mary Helen (Klemm) Phillips in Aurora.

Dutch met his wife during high school, and though she stole his heart, she gave him hers in return. Dutch and Jane Schramer went to their first dance in 1960, and four years later, were united in marriage on Sept. 12, 1964, at S.S. Peter & Paul Catholic Church in Virgil.

Dutch began working in the family egg business and also worked for a time at Zephyr Gas, a small gas station in Sugar Grove. He spent most of his years behind the wheel of a semi, driving for G. Baker Express and later Blackhorse Carriers.

He now leaves his wife of 45 years, Jane; four children, Deanna (Phil) McCarney and their children, Nicholas and Nolan, of Elburn; Denise (Mike) Thelander and their daughter, Jordan, of Elburn; Keith (Julie) Phillips and their children, Brandon and Katelyn, of Batavia; and Kevin (Aimee Lave) Phillips and their children, Cody, Cecily, and Courtney of Watertown, S.D.; four siblings, Jerry “Cork” (Sue) Phillips, Patrick “Skip” (Mary Perry) Phillips, Rita (Larry) Schmitt and Marcy (Randy) Vanatta; many nieces, nephews; and a countryside of friends who will never forget his smile.

He now joins his parents and one niece, Tiffany Vanatta, who preceded him in death.

Visitation was at St. Gall Catholic Church in Elburn from 4 to 9 p.m., with a wake service at 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 30. A Mass to celebrate his life and faith will be at 10:30 a.m., with a time of visitation to precede the mass from 9:30 to 10:15 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 31, 2009. Fr. Karl Ganss, pastor of the church, will officiate, and interment will follow at Kaneville Cemetery.

A memorial has been established in his name to benefit his favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “Donald Phillips 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.

Mardelle L. Voigt

Mardelle L. Voigt, 80, of Elburn, passed away on Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2009, at her home and passed from this life to the next, meeting her husband Vern in time to be truly “home” for Christmas.

She was born Nov. 29, 1929, the daughter of Willard and Dorothy (Henning) Murbach in Oak Park, Ill.

Mardelle grew up in Oak Park and attended local schools. She graduated with the class of 1948 from Oak Park Township High School. Following graduation, Mardelle continued her education at a local business school in Chicago, where she studied bookkeeping.

Mardelle worked for several companies in the Chicago area, including Borden Ice Cream Company and the Federal Reserve Bank. In 1972, Mardelle began working for the Little Traveler in Geneva for what was only supposed to be six weeks. Later in 1988, Mardelle worked her way to be the general manager and was in charge of purchasing. She would accumulate a history of over a dozen trips to England in search of the perfect antiques to bring home.

It was Christmas time in 1957, and Mardelle attended a party where she met her future husband, Vern Voigt, who was home for the holidays from working in Alaska. Eleven months later in November 1958, they were married and soon headed back up to Alaska, as a family, to finish the work he started previously. Upon completion, they headed to Elburn to construct their new home, where they eventually settled. The family traveled extensively with Vern’s job and worked in many places throughout the world, including England.

Mardelle was an avid reader of anything she could get her hands on, especially Danielle Steele romance novels and mysteries. Although Mardelle traveled for work extensively, she also took many trips just for pleasure, with destinations across the United States and abroad, such as Ireland and Germany. When home, traveling around her social circles made each day go by faster.

Mardelle was a member and past Worthy Matron of Eastern Star and the American Legion Auxiliary.

She now leaves one daughter, Catherine (Jeff) Mathews of Maple Park; one grandson, Bill (Alison) Donovan of St. Louis; one granddaughter, Bethany M. Donovan of Maple Park; one great-granddaughter, Kyla Rachas of Maple Park; one brother, John (Marti) Murbach of Florida; many nieces, nephews and a family of friends.

She now joins her parents; her husband, Vern; and one son, James “Jimmy,” who passed away as a toddler in 1955, who preceded her in death.

Friends called Monday, Dec. 21, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn.

A funeral service to celebrate her life was held at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn, at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 22, with the Rev. David Bateman officiating. Interment followed at Chapel Hill Gardens Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in her name. Checks may be made to the “Mardelle Voigt Memorial” and mailed to P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119.

Mike F. Del Medico

Mike F. Del Medico, 51 , of St. Charles, died suddenly Sunday, Dec. 13, 2009. Mike will be remembered for the man that he was, the memories that he made and the love that he gave to family and friends. Although his life ended, his spirit lives on in all those who both knew him and who will miss him.

Mike was born on Oct. 12, 1958, the son of Paul and Diane (Rossi) Del Medico in Junction City, Kan.

Mike’s childhood was surrounded by generations of family who lived in Chicago. Following his schooling, auto body restoration caught his attention, and his career as a technician began in the local shops around the suburbs of Chicago.

Mike met the love of his life, Monica, in 1975 at the age of 16. Their two hearts became one on June 7, 1980, and their family became complete with the birth of their son Michael in 1981. Over the years, they made their home in many places throughout the suburbs, finally settling in St. Charles in 1992.

Mike’s passion for cars led to the opening of his first auto-repair business in 1982. His most recent and sustained venture was the opening of Mastercraft Autobody in Wauconda, Ill., in 1992.

In Mike’s spare time he loved to hunt and fish, and he also enjoyed many years as a member of the St. Charles Sportsman’s Club.

Mike was a perfectionist at heart and took incredible pride in everything he did. No one was more special to Mike than his son, and he was quick to share his accomplishments with everyone he met. He also made Michael his unofficial apprentice, teaching him the skills required to both renovate their home and complete minor car repairs and upkeep over the years.

Mike also had a special relationship with his nephew Matthew, whom he treated as a second son as he guided him through the trials of life. As a playful jokester, Mike loved to laugh, and his smile consistently brightened rooms. “Big Mike’s” heart was made of gold, and his generosity was unwavering. He will be missed for many reasons, but his life and memory will be cherished forever.

He now leaves his wife Monica; his son, Mike (Lindsay Wasenko) Del Medico; his mother, Diane Del Medico; two brothers, Paul and Mark Del Medico; his paternal grandparents, Frank and Philomena Del Medico; his mother-in-law, Marcie Vazquez; many aunts and uncles, including Mary (Frank) Donato; several brothers- and sisters-in-law, many nieces, nephews, cousins and a vast quantity of people who were lucky enough to call him friend.

He now joins his father; his grandfather, Steve Rossi; father-in-law, Gilbert Vazquez; and brother-in-law, Christopher Kapusta, who preceded him in death.

Visitation was from 3 to 9 p.m. at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn on Friday, Dec. 18. The Elburn Fire Department honored the family with a Catholic wake service. A funeral to celebrate his life was Saturday, Dec. 19, at 10 a.m. at St. Patrick’s Mission Catholic Church, 6N491 Crane Road, St. Charles. Private family interment will occur at a later date following cremation.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in his name to benefit his favorite charities, including Illinois Children’s Burn Camp and the LivingWell Cancer Resource Center. Checks may be made to the “Mike Del Medico Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or at www.conleycare.com.

Frank Anthony Lo Destro

Frank Anthony Lo Destro, 88, died peacefully on Sunday, Dec. 20, in his Elburn home.

He was born Sept. 23, 1921, in Chicago.

He was an entrepreneur and held many positions over his life, mainly in the building materials industry. On Dec. 8, 1945, he enlisted in the U.S. Marines, where he was assigned to the First Marine Division. He saw action in the first offensive against the Japanese at Guadalcanal and Tulagi. His tour of duty also included New Guinea, Cape Gloucester, Talasee and Pelileu in the South Pacific.

On Dec. 2, 1950, he married Erminia Panozzo, and they were happily married until her death on May 30, 1990.

He is survived by children Frank (Hope) Lo Destro, Peter (Cheri) Lo Destro and Michele (Roderick) Kelly; grandchildren, Tricia, Paula (Dennis) Paben, Julie, Bonnie, Brent (Natalia), Grant, Chana, Sonya, Brina; Katherine, Patrick and Peter; and great-granddaughter, Samantha.

Visitation was from 5 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Dec 22, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. Mass began at 10:30 a.m., on Wednesday, Dec. 23, at St. Gall Catholic Church, Elburn. Interment was in Resurrection Cemetery, Geneva.

Church News for Dec. 24

Elburn Hill Church holds service on Christmas Eve
Elburn—Elburn Hill Church, 506 N. Main St., announced that its Christmas Eve service will be held from 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 24.

Pastor Gary Augustine said the family-style celebration will focused on stories of hope.

“Down through the years both in the Bible and in the lives of people, God has met the needs of struggling people,” Augustine said. “Take an hour Christmas Eve to reignite your hope. Christmas is not about the past, but the future. The stories of Christmas have the power to turn this season into a lens that sees life in a truly hopeful way.”

For information, call (630) 365-9064 or visit www.ElburnHillChurch.org.

St. Gall announces Christmas, New Year’s schedule of services
Elburn—In order to accommodate the large number of families attending Mass on Christmas eve, Thursday, Dec. 24, St. Gall Church in Elburn will provide two 4 p.m. Masses, one in the church and one in the parish hall.

The pastor, Fr. Karl Ganss, will preside at the hall Mass, and Fr. William Etheredge, a priest from Aurora Central Catholic High School, will officiate in the church. Children from the parish will present a Christmas pageant at each of the 4 p.m. Masses.

Other Christmas Eve Masses include a 6 p.m. Mass, preceded at 5:30 p.m. by carols, and a 10 p.m. Mass with music provided by the combined choir. The 10 p.m. Mass will be preceded by Christmas carols, beginning at 9:30 p.m. Masses for Christmas Day are at 8, 9:30 and 11 a.m.

Masses for Saturday, Dec. 26, and Sunday, Dec. 27, follow the regular weekend schedule.

The New Year’s schedule will consist of three different Masses to observe the Feast of the Solemnity of Mary. The first liturgy will be a Mass of anticipation on Thursday, Dec. 31, at 4:30 p.m. Masses for New Year’s Day are at 9:30 and 11 a.m.

For information, call (630) 365-6030.

Bethany Lutheran announces Julotta Service
Batavia—Bethany Lutheran Church, 8 S. Lincoln St., Batavia, will host its annual Julotta (Swedish/English) service in the sanctuary on Christmas day at 8 a.m.

Magnus Hilbo of Northpark, Ill., will officiate the service in Swedish and English. In addition, Holy Communion will be served.

This traditional Swedish service has been a part of Bethany’s history for more than 100 years. There will be a Swedish breakfast following the service.

For more information, call (630) 879-3444.

Rife, Chite to wed

James and Nancy Rife of Elburn announce the engagement of their daughter, Allison Ann Rife, to Mark Michael Chite, son of Anthony and Deborah Chite of Olney, Md.

The bride-to-be is a 2001 graduate of Central High School in Burlington and the University of Maryland. She is employed by the Loudoun County Fire & Rescue Department as a firefighter and emergency medical technician.

The future groom is a 1999 graduate of Sherwood High School in Sandy Spring, Md., and the University of Maryland. He is employed by the Hyattsville City Police Department as a police officer.

The wedding ceremony will be May 7, 2011, in Elgin, Ill.

Judith ‘Judy’ K. Watters

Judith “Judy” K. Watters, 69, of Elburn, passed away at Provena Mercy Center Hospital, Aurora, on Sunday, Dec. 13, 2009.

She was born April 8, 1940, the daughter of Charles and Katherine (Roper) Cronk in Chicago.

Judy grew up in Franklin Park and attended local schools. After graduating in 1958, she met James Coakley, and they were married soon after. They were blessed with five children, Gayle, Bryan, Roy, Michael and Patricia.

Judy and Jim and their growing family made their home in Melrose Park, Ill. Judy and Jim parted ways in 1979. Love found Judy once again, this time with a childhood friend named Boyd Watters after a serendipitous Christmas card found its way into her hands. His heart followed soon after, and they were united in marriage on June 20, 1981, on Boyd’s boat in Burnham Park Harbor, Chicago.

Boyd brought with him two blessings from his previous marriage, Jacqueline and Richard. Just as the number in the family multiplied, so did the blessings and memories during the next 28 years. The memories began where they made their home in Melrose Park until they moved to Bristol, Ill., in 1983. They left for the west coast in 1986 to be near Judy’s mom in California before returning to be near family in 2002, settling in Elburn.

Judy put her heart and soul into her family, which left little room for additional jobs outside the home.

Judy’s kitchen was a wonderland of delicious baked sweets, especially fudge, which was a family favorite. She was a great friend to those in need, and the friendships made spanned across the country and across generations. Judy was a very patient and kind person. She was an angel to many, but none more so than her husband, Boyd, who regularly told her that she made him want to be a better man. A loving wife, adoring mother and a favorite among the grandchildren and great-grandchildren, Judy will be missed by many for a long time to come.

She now leaves her loving husband, Boyd; seven children, Gayle (Curtis) Miller of Mendota, Ill., Bryan (Maggie) of Coakley of Palatine, Ill., Roy (Becky) Coakley of North Lake, Ill., Michael (Tracy) Coakley of St. Charles, Patricia Strayer of Aurora, Jacquelilne (Eric) Rothfone of Mokena, Ill., and Richard (Carol) Watters of Tinley Park, Ill.; 15 grandchildren, Melissa (Brian) Bembenek and their daughter, Angela of Downers Grove, Ill., Shelby Miller of Mendota, Ill., Leah Griffen of Palatine, Ill., Paige Coakley of Palatine, Ill., Maddy Coakly of North Lake, Ill., Jacqueline Coakley of North Lake, Ill., Jesse Coakley of North Lake, Ill., Lexia Coakley of St. Charles, Logan Coakley of St. Charles, Kalyn Strayer of Hebron, Ind., Stephanie Strayer of Hebron, Ind., Wendy (Shawn) Gamble and her children, Sara and Gage, of Bryan, Texas, Paul Armenia of Bourbonnais, Ill., Lauren Watters of Tinley Park, Ill., and Brian Watters of Tinley Park, Ill.; other extended family, and a family of friends.

She now joins her parents, who preceded her in death.

Visitation will be from 3 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 17, 2009, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn, IL 60119. Following cremation, a memorial service will be held Saturday, Dec. 19, at the Kaneville United Methodist Church, 724 Main Street Road, Kaneville, at 11 a.m. The Rev. Lonnie Caha, pastor of the Parkview Christian Church of Orland Park, Ill., and Rev. Jason Turner, Pastor of Kaneville United Methodist Church, will officiate with private family interment to follow at a later date.

A memorial has been established in her name to benefit her favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “Judy Watters 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.

Church news for Dec. 17

St. Mary’s of Maple Park hosts annual Christmas cookie sale
Maple Park—The St. Mary’s of Maple Park annual Christmas cookie sale will be held on Saturday, Dec. 19, from 9 to 11 a.m. at St. Mary’s Novak Center on County Line Road in Maple Park. Homemade cookies will be sold for $6 per pound.

Advance orders may be placed until Thursday, Dec. 17. For more information or advance orders, call (815) 827-3302.

St. Gall announces Christmas schedule
Elburn—In order to accommodate the large number of families attending Mass on Christmas eve, Thursday, Dec. 24, St. Gall Church in Elburn will provide two 4 p.m. Masses, one in the church and one in the parish hall.

The pastor, Fr. Karl Ganss, will preside at the hall Mass, and Fr. William Etheredge, a priest from Aurora Central Catholic High School, Aurora, will officiate in the church. Children from the parish will present a Christmas pageant at each of the 4 p.m. Masses.

Other Christmas Eve Masses include a 6 p.m. Mass, preceded at 5:30 p.m. by carols, and a 10 p.m. Mass with music provided by the combined choir. The 10 p.m. Mass will be preceded by Christmas carols, beginning at 9:30 p.m. Masses for Christmas Day are at 8, 9:30 and 11 a.m.

Masses for Saturday, Dec. 26, and Sunday, Dec. 27, follow the regular weekend schedule.

For information, call (630) 365-6030.

Elburn Hill Church announces Christmas Eve service
Elburn—Elburn Hill Church, 506 N. Main St., announced that its Christmas Eve service will be held from 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 24.

Pastor Gary Augustine said the family-style celebration will focused on stories of hope.

“Down through the years both in the Bible and in the lives of people, God has met the needs of struggling people,” Augustine said. “Take an hour Christmas Eve to reignite your hope. Christmas is not about the past, but the future. The stories of Christmas have the power to turn this season into a lens that sees life in a truly hopeful way.”

For information, call (630) 365-9064 or visit www.ElburnHillChurch.org.

Bethany Lutheran announces Julotta Service
Batavia—Bethany Lutheran Church, 8 S. Lincoln St., Batavia, will host its annual Julotta (Swedish/English) service in the sanctuary on Christmas day at 8 a.m.

Magnus Hilbo of Northpark, Ill., will officiate the service in Swedish and English. In addition, Holy Communion will be served.

This traditional Swedish service has been a part of Bethany’s history for more than 100 years. There will be a Swedish breakfast following the service.

For more information, call (630) 879-3444.

Larson named to leadership group

Tyler Larson of Maple Park was recently recognized as a member of Sigma Alpha Lambda, National Leadership and Honors Organization at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign.

Sigma Alpha Lambda is a national leadership and honors organization dedicated to promoting and rewarding academic achievement and providing members with opportunities for community service, personal development and lifelong professional fulfillment.

Sorensens celebrate 70 years of wedded bliss

Roy and Berdena Sorensen of Hinckley are celebrating their 70th wedding anniversary on Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2009.

An open house is being planned for Saturday, April 17, 2010, at the Big Rock Congregational Church from 2 to 5 p.m.

They have two children, Terry (Sherry) Sorensen of Big Rock and Lavon (Alan) Nehring of Sycamore; also, four grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

Please omit gifts.

Church news for Dec. 10

Tanzanian band to perform at Bethlehem Lutheran Church
DeKalb—New Life Band from Tanzania will perform in concert Tuesday, Dec. 15, at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, located at 1915 North First St., DeKalb.

A potluck supper will begin at 5:30 p.m., giving participants a chance to enjoy a meal and visit with band members. The concert will follow at 6:30 p.m.

New Life Band, a mission to Tanzanian youth, was established in 1976 by Fortunatus Mabondo at the age of 15, when he recognized the need to bring hope to the youth of Tanzania, who were caught up in an atmosphere of poverty, unemployment, substance abuse and lack of direction for their lives.

Over the years, the New Life Band, Mission to Youth and Students, has developed an active and vibrant ministry to Tanzanian youth, primarily teenagers, through school visits, national youth camps and conferences, outdoor Christian rallies, concerts and performances, and one-on-one counseling and guidance.

These musicians reach out through their wide range of music from traditional African drum rhythms and close harmonies, to modern western style instruments with an African flare. They have toured in the United States and United Kingdom since the mid-1990s with concerts, discussions of their ministries and cultural exchange programs.

There is no admission charge for the concert; a free-will offering will be taken to support the New Life Band youth ministry.

For more information about the New Life Band, visit www.newlifeband.net. For potluck and/or concert details, contact Mary Lasits at (815) 758-3203 or visit www.bethlehemdekalb.org.

St. Mary’s of Maple Park hosts annual Christmas cookie sale
Maple Park—The St. Mary’s of Maple Park annual Christmas cookie sale will be held on Saturday, Dec. 19, from 9 to 11 a.m. at St. Mary’s Novak Center on County Line Road in Maple Park. Homemade cookies will be sold for $6 per pound.

Advance orders may be placed until Thursday, Dec. 17. For more information or advance orders, call (815) 827-3302.

St. Peter Church offers Advent Mission
Geneva—St. Peter Church in Geneva will host an Advent Mission Tuesday through Thursday, Dec. 15-17.
The mission will focus on Advent as a season of hope and anticipation. Advent sets the tone for all seasons of the Catholic Church calendar. Fr. Aduquo will discuss how this season permeates in a profound manner, and the reality of what it means to be a good and joy-filled Christian in all the circumstances of everyday living. The last day of the mission is focused on Catholics who wish to receive the sacrament of reconciliation. Several priests will be available for the sacrament of Confession.
St. Peter Church is located at 1891 Kaneville Road, Geneva. Inquires can be directed to the parish center at (630) 232-0124.

Reita V. Zanardi

Reita V. Zanardi, 92, of Batavia, passed away peacefully on Dec. 2, 2009, at Countryside Care Center in Aurora, Ill.

She was born on Aug. 1, 1917, the daughter of Alice (Harrison) and Hermann Jonas in Minneapolis, Minn.

Reita grew up in Minneapolis and attended local schools before her family moved to St. Charles in 1938.

She was united in marriage to Joseph Zanardi in 1938 in Springfield, Ill., but spent 71 of her memory-making years in the Fox Valley area.

Reita worked at many different manufacturing companies over the years, but the one thing that remained constant was her involvement in the area of quality control as an inspector. Her longest tenure was with Campana in Batavia.

She was a member of the Batavia VFW Women’s Auxiliary and served her community by being an election judge in Kane County for many years.

Reita had a joy for learning new skills and information that was charming and delightful, and possessed a manner that belied her years. Never too young to learn, she attended college in her 80s to enhance her piano playing abilities.

Never a stranger to hard work, Reita dedicated herself to each task and each job, whether it was in the working sector or just working in her garden. Summers and sunshine were a balm to her soul, and the time spent picking grapes for jam or sweet peas growing on a trellis were a treat unlike any other. The smells from the kitchen wafted through her home as she cooked and canned and passed on her knowledge to the next generations, even teaching her son Curt to make gravy.

When not in the kitchen, Reita enjoyed crocheting afghans and garments for her granddaughters. She also enjoyed traveling the U.S., memorializing each trip with a bounty of pictures. When she and her husband Joe began to attend flea markets, they never could imagine that a favorite pastime would become a passion. They soon became dealers specializing in old glass and pottery.

After Joe died in 1975, she continued dealing in glass and flea markets for many years. Late in life, she had a special friend in John Murphy, with whom she would share trips and activities that made her later years an adventure.

She now leaves her son, Curt (Marlene) Zanardi of St. Charles; two granddaughters, Heather (Norman) Pink of Aurora and Joanna (Matthew) Janecek of St. Charles; four great-grandchildren whom she called her “Angels,” Miles Janecek, Caden Pink, McCoy Janecek and Dante Pink; one sister, Betty McKamey of Dixon, Ill.; many nieces and nephews and a host of good friends.

She now joins her husband, Joseph; her brothers, Bud Stadler and John Harrison; and her good friend, John Murphy, who preceded her in death.

Private family services were handled with care by Conley Funeral Home, Elburn.

A memorial has been established in her name to benefit her favorite charities. Checks may be made to the “Reita Zanardi 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.

Emma Rita Karch

Emma Rita Karch, 90, of Virgil, died Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2009, at Kishwaukee Community Hospital in DeKalb.

She was born Aug. 15, 1919, in Virgil, the daughter of Henry and Margaret (then) Kirchmann. She was married to George W. Karch.

Emma was a lifelong resident of Kane County and SS Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Virgil. She was a graduate of West High School in Aurora. She was a homemaker and enjoyed cooking and knitting. She made beautiful scarves, afghans and gloves for her family and people in need. She also loved to babysit for her grandchildren and friends in the community. She retired from Doan’s pill factory in Geneva after many years of service.

Emma is survived by two sons, George (Geri) Karch of Benton, Ken. and Jack (Pati) Karch of Manitowoc, Wis.; three grandchildren, Michelle Karch, Jack “J.B.” (Gretchyn) Karch and Todd (Aileen) Karch; six great-grandchildren, Madi, Cole, Katelyn Emma, Will, Alexandrea and Lea; and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her husband, one brother and six sisters.

Her Funeral Mass was Saturday, Dec. 5, at 11 a.m. at the SS Peter and Paul Catholic Church, 5N939 Meredith Road in Virgil, with Fr. Perfecto Vasquez officiating.

Her visitation was Dec. 5 from 9 a.m. until the time of the Funeral Mass at the church. A luncheon followed the Funeral Mass, and a graveside service was held at 1:30 p.m. at the Virgil Cemetery.

A memorial has been established for Emma Karch in care of the Butala Funeral Home and Crematory, 1405 DeKalb Ave., Sycamore, IL 60178. For information, call (815) 895-2833.