Kathleen “Kathy” J. Papnick, age 65, of South Elgin, formerly of Elgin, passed away peacefully, surrounded by the love and prayers of her family, Saturday, August 22, 2020.
She was born May 3, 1955, in Marion, OH, to loving parents, William “Bill” and Barbara (Sayer) Monroe.
Kathy grew up in Marion, but her formative years were spent with her mom and step-dad in Glendale Heights, IL.
She graduated from Glenbard North with the class of 1973. Before receiving her diploma, Kathy made a name for herself on the stage through the drama club. Later as an adult, she concentrated on social work and para legal studies at Elgin Community College.
Kathy’s path eventually lead her to John Papnick, a familiar face back in high school, and one that would lead her down the path to the altar on October 19, 1987 in the “cutest little chapel” in Elgin, IL.
They made their home in Elgin for a time, making stops in several local communities before settling in Bartlett, where they continued to make a lifetime of memories.
Although Kathy worked at various companies over the years, she reserved all of her love for her children and grandchildren. She was a room mom, softball and cheerleading coach, and threw the best parties at school to the delight of her children and friends, and the envy of other moms.
Kathy was an advocate for the public education of RSD, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, a nervous condition that leads to pain throughout the body, and CRPS, Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome, a similar diagnosis, both of which afflicted Kathy for the last 16 years.
Kathy was the loudest at the party with a laugh that so distinct you could pin point her position in a second. She was wonderfully goofy and passed it on to others, infecting them with the courage to step out, try something new or just laugh at themselves and the silly situations she would get them in. She had a heart that had room for everyone, making sure you felt comfortable and a member of the family. That family was sacrosanct and she would give everything and more to make sure they were taken care of, especially her grandson Jake who was the “light of her life”. She loved to camp as young girl in Lake In The Hills (Wautoma, WI) and Heritage Lake (Mackinaw IL). Later, she enjoyed campfires at Hansen’s Hideaway in Oregon, IL. In the past five years, despite her afflictions, Kathy travelled with her family to New York and Florida, making stops at every Bob Evans and Cracker Barrel along the way. Branson, MO, also was a special destination that garnered laughter and love by the bucketful. Kathy brightened the lives of everyone who knew her and though the world is darker and poorer for her absence, her memory will shine for generations.
She is survived by her daughter: Kellie (Todd) Mowers; one grandson, Jacob Sikora; seven siblings: Victor (Rebecca) Monroe, Elizabeth Sorensen, Dale (Kellie) Lumpkins, Regina (Russell Norris) Lumpkins, Mike (Deanna) Lumpkins, Amy Montoya, James Monroe and Rebecca Monroe; many nieces, nephews and legion of friends who will all miss her dearly.
She is preceded in death by paternal grandma, Margaret Monroe; paternal uncle Gene Monroe, her parents, William Monroe and Barbara Lumpkins, her step-father, Thomas Lumpkins, her husband John Papnick, and one sister, Florence Renee Mitchell.
A private family memorial service will be held Saturday, September 12, 2020, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St, Elburn, IL 60119. Friends may join the service through Facebook Live. A link will be provided on the morning of the service at the bottom of her life story on the Conley Funeral Home Facebook Page, as well as at www.conleycare.com.
In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in Kathy’s name. Checks may be made to the “Kathleen Papnick Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address, the Conley Funeral Home Facebook Page, or at www.conleycare.com.
Click or copy this link to be connected to Facebook Live Stream of the service. Link will be live at 1:55 p.m.: https://www.facebook.com/ConleyFuneral/live/