Irene Lucille Graham

June 16, 1930 ~ May 3, 2022 (age 91)


Irene Lucille Graham, 91, of Grand Ridge, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, May 3, 2022 at Ottawa Pavilion.

Mass of Christian Burial will be Tuesday, May 10, at 10:00am at St. Francis of Assisi Church, with Rev. David Kipfer officiating. Visitation will be from 4:00 until 7:00 pm on Monday May 9, at Ottawa Funeral Home. She will be buried at St. Columba Cemetery. Ottawa Funeral Home & Crematory has been entrusted with arrangements.

Irene was born June 16, 1930 in Grand Ridge to Harry and Ethel (Rinker) Hayward.  She attended a one room country grade school (Paddy Ridge School) and graduated in 1948 from Streator High School, later attending Illinois State University.  

Irene married Robert Anthony Graham of Marseilles on November 17, 1951 at St. Joseph’s church in Marseilles. They had 4 children, Stephen Graham (deceased), Jeff (Kathy) Graham, William (Rosi) Graham and Sharon (Thad) Pellino.

Irene’s warm heart and generosity were shared with all who knew her, both among her family and friends, and within her community. Growing up she was active in 4H and became a 4H leader using her baking and sewing skills and through meticulous recipe testing developed her famous sweet tooth. Visitors and guests always had a welcome spot at Irene’s table so long as they would stay after supper for a round of Euchre.

Irene served as an election judge for Farm Ridge Township welcoming voters with her kind smile and friendly wave for over 30 years.  She was an active member of LaSalle County Home Extension and Parishioner of St. Michael the Archangel parish in Streator. 

Irene enjoyed rooting for her hometown sports teams and the highlight of her summer later in her years was heading to Wrigley Field to cheer on the Cubs with a large home-made sign in tow. Inevitably she always managed to find her way onto the Jumbotron.
Irene was a dedicated farm wife and her fondness for farm animals was only surpassed by her love for her family. Grandma will be greatly missed by her 11 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her father, mother, grandparents, husband, son, and granddaughter.

Pallbearers will be her grandchildren.
Memorials may be directed to the Grand Ridge Volunteer Fire Department. 

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