Helen V. Smarjesse, 88, of Peoria, passed away at 9:40 p.m., Wednesday, November 21, 2012 at her residence.
Born August 4, 1924 in Springfield, Illinois to Clarence A. and Mary E. (Murphy) Barbre, she married James G. Smarjesse January 17, 1948 in Springfield. He preceded her in death September 8, 1997 in Peoria after nearly 50 years of marriage.
She was also preceded in death by her infant daughter, Cynthia; her parents; her brother, Ralph; and her sister, Ruth McVary.
Surviving are three sons, Stephen (Cynthia) of Plymouth, MN; Vincent (Lynn) of Asheville, NC and Patrick (Jane) of Peoria, IL; four daughters, Cheryl (Gary) Biltgen of Peoria, M. Camille (Charlie) Lavin of Peoria, Diane (Stephen) Mathis of Springfield, IL, and Elizabeth (Andrew) Lankton of Eureka, IL; and her elder sister, M. Eloise Schinneer of Farragut, TN. She is also survived by nineteen grandchildren, three great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.
Helen was a 1942 graduate of Sacred Heart Academy in Springfield, IL.
Formerly, she worked for the US Government and the State of Illinois in Springfield. The occupation that brought her the most joy was being a coach’s wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.
She was a member of St. Philomena Catholic Church in Peoria, the Catholic Womens’ League, The Daughters of Isabella, and the St. Mark’s Seniors’ Club.
Helen remained in her home and was surrounded by her loving family throughout her illness and up to the point of her death. The family is grateful for the compassionate support from her many friends.
Funeral Mass will be 1 p.m., Saturday, November 24, 2012 at St. Philomena Catholic Church. Visitation will be from 10-1 p.m. on Saturday prior to the Mass at the church. A private burial will be held at a later date in Calvary Cemetery in Springfield, IL.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the St. Philomena Building Fund.
Tributes and condolences may be submitted to www.wrightandsalmon.com.