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1921 Mary 2017

Mary Nelis

November 22, 1921 — November 3, 2017

Mary E. Dieter Wolff Nelis, age 95, of West Chicago, passed away peacefully of natural causes on November 4, 2017. She was born on November 22, 1921, in Wheaton, IL, to Henry and Mathilda (Klein) Dieter and was raised in DuPage County amid her large extended family.

Mary is survived by her children, Anita Wolff of Chicago, Barbara (Robert) Urick of Winfield, Pamela (Tom Tracy) Turner of Carol Stream, Steven Wolff of Grand Ridge, daughter-in-law Janice Wolff of Earlville, IL; stepchildren, Cathleen Baker, Michael (Jan) Nelis and Margaret Long; grandchildren, Alan (Jane) Wolff, Lauren Smith, Adam Turner, Amy Wolff, Ashley(Armando) Quintanilla; step-grandchildren, George (Andrea) Turner, Kevin Turner, Dawn Turner, James (Kasia) Urick, Geoff Pejsa, Tracy Moran, Mark Pejsa, Brad Pejsa, Michael Baker, John Nelis, Mary Brown, Stephanie Law, Matthew Nelis, William Long and Scott Nelis; 39 great-grandchildren; 5 great-great grandchildren; 10 nieces; 6 nephews; several cousins, and numerous friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her brothers, Harry Dieter and Victor Dieter; sister, Ruth Gaddy; first husband, John Wolff; second husband, Charles Nelis; sons, John, Terry, and Tommy Wolff; stepdaughter, Noreen Pejsa; stepson, Jack Nelis; and great-granddaughter, Anna Smith.

Mary worked many places including Scheffler’s Greenhouse, Illinois Bell as a long distance operator, Cascade Drive-In Theatre , Wolff Bus Service and Monarch Coaches,and Ball Seed Company, from which she retired in 1983.

Mary and her husband John retired to Arkansas where she was the Pastoral Administrator at St. Mary’s Church in Mt. View, AR, Past President of Ladies Auxiliary of VFW Post 4766 Mt. View, AR, President of Stone County, AR Literary Council, President of Extension Homemakers, active member at Stone Co. AR Senior Center, Miss Senior White River, 1990 Silver-haired delegate to Arkansas State Legislature. She earned a GED at age 65.

She returned to Illinois in 2000 and was a Life Member and Past President of West Chicago VFW Post 6791 Ladies Auxiliary, American Legion Post 300 Ladies Auxiliary of West Chicago, and life member of the VFW National Home for Children. Mary was an active member of St. Mary’s Church in West Chicago where she was a Religious Education Teacher and an ESL teacher. She was instrumental in starting St. Mary’s Rosary Crusade and Prayer Shawl Group.

She was a devout Catholic, a volunteer and donor to many worthy causes, a lifelong Chicago Cubs fan, and an avid reader; she loved crocheting and other needlework, solving crossword and jigsaw puzzles, and was a tireless gardener. She loved her many pets and was never happier than when she was surrounded by her family and friends.

Visitation will be held on Monday, November 6, 2017 from 3 to 8 p.m. at Norris-Segert Funeral Home & Cremation Services , 132 Fremont St. West Chicago. Prayers will be on Tuesday, November 7, 2017 at 9:30 a.m. at the funeral home and proceed to St. Mary’s Church , 164 N. Oakwood Ave., West Chicago where a funeral Mass will be held at 10 a.m. Interment will follow at St. John the Baptist Cemetery in Winfield, IL. Contributions in Mary’s memory can be made to VFW Post 6791, 431 N. Neltnor Blvd, West Chicago, IL 60185

For info 630-231-0060 or

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