Date of Birth
Date of Death
NAME Joanne E. Gehringer, age 72, of Leland, formerly of Kaneville, passed away at Kishwaukee Community Hospital, DeKalb, Sunday, September 13, 2009. BORN: She was born December 11, 1936 the daughter of Alfred and Norma (Hanson) Maier in Aurora, IL. EARLY YEARS:Joanne grew up on the family farm on Tanner Rd. in Sugar Grove attending local schools. She graduated from Elburn High School in 1954 and worked for the next twenty-six years as a buyer and manager of the stationery and bath department for the Little Traveler in Geneva. The title of "buyer and manager" would become a staple for Joanne as worked in that capacity for the gift shop at Fisherman’s Inn as well as the Grimm’s Hallmark Shop in St. Charles. After becoming a sales representative for a time, she returned to her Hallmark roots by working for Nicole’s Hallmark at the West Aurora Shopping Plaza. MARRIAGE: It was shortly before Elburn Days in 1965 that Joanne would meet the man that would walk beside her the rest of her days, Jim Gehringer. After a six month whirlwind courtship, they were united in marriage on her birthday, December 11, 1965. RESIDENTIAL HISTORY: They began their life together in a tenant house on the old Gehrke Farm on Lees Rd. in Virgil Township. Five years later they moved to Lorang Rd. in Kaneville. In 2005 they moved once more to Leland. For the length of their marriage she was a member of a neighborhood club of ladies from the Lee’s Rd. area. MEMBERSHIPS: Joanne was a member of the Kaneville United Methodist Church and for many years was active in the women’s group and always worked at their fall beef dinner. LIFE NOTES: Joanne was an entertainer at heart and her home was always open to family and friends. It wasn’t a holiday without spending time with Jim and Joanne, eating home cooked meals and fresh baked desserts. Her home was filled with decorations for every season and every holiday, especially Christmas. Her collection of Christmas ornaments was large enough to decorate seven trees each December. She also collected antique dishes and anything that pictured cats of all kinds and sizes. No matter the season, you could be sure that the house would be spotless no matter where you looked. Outside of the home, Jim and Joanne ruled the road on their Goldwing motorcycle. Cruising along the highway, their destination could be anywhere between Canada and Florida. She also loved to accompany Jim to the Steam and Power shows as long as she could walk amongst the arts and crafts and shop until her heart’s content. When they finally made it home, Rosey and Emily, her two favorite cats, welcomed them home. Once a month she met with her neighborhood club to play UNO, gossip and share desserts, but not necessarily in that order. It was when she was living on Lees Rd. that Joanne opened her heart and home by rescuing a stray cat. This trend continued over the years as at least one cat, and sometimes up to five, called Lees Rd. home as evidenced by a little plaque on her wall which read, "You are never fully dressed without a little cat hair." Although rescuing stray cats became common place, she also rescued "stray" people who were lonely and in need of a friend and home cooked meal. Joanne’s open arms, loving heart and giving soul will be missed greatly by family, friends and the occasional feline in need of her care. SURVIVORS: She now leaves her loving and devoted husband Jim,One sister Sharon (Ken) Needham-De Arvil of Oregon, IL;Many cousins, nieces and nephews and a family of close friends. PRECEDED:She now joins her parents and one brother-in-law George Needham who preceded her in death. VISITATION / FUNERAL Visitation will be from 5-8 p.m., Thursday, September 17, 2009 at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. A funeral to celebrate her life will be at 10 a.m. Friday, September 18th at Conley Funeral Home. Rev. Jason Turner, pastor of the Kaneville United Methodist Church, will officiate and interment will follow at Jericho Cemetery, Sugar Grove. MEMORIAL In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in her name to benefit her favorite charities. Checks may be made to the "Joanne Gehringer 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.
Visitation will be from 5-8 p.m., Thursday, September 17, 2009 at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. A funeral to celebrate her life will be at 10 a.m. Friday, September 18th at Conley Funeral Home. Rev. Jason Turner, pastor of the Kaneville United Methodist Church, will officiate.
Interment will follow at Jericho Cemetery, Sugar Grove.