Frances E (Ryan) Flexsenhar, 92, of Delavan, passed away at 8:45 am Friday, February 12, 2021 at Unity Point Health – Proctor in Peoria.
She was born February 21, 1928 in Jerseyville, IL to James A. and Aline (Dougherty) Ryan. She married Lyle Flexsenhar on March 2, 1947 in Green Valley.
They were blessed with four children, Reg (Sharon) Flexsenhar of Green Valley, Lynda (William) Riekena of Bartonville, Mary Gayle (Charles) Williams, and Joyce (Raymond) Riekena of Canton; 10 grandchildren, Lance (Mary) Flexsenhar of DesPlaines, Quinn (Amy) Flexsenhar of Wildwood, MO, Brandon (Holly) Flexsenhar of Green Valley, Crystal (Patrick) Elliott of Mapleton, Travis Riekena of Bethlehem, PA, Adam Riekena of Bellevue, Caleb (Weslie) Williams of Pittsboro, IN, Bryan Riekena of Herrin, IL, Renee (Clay) Brinker of Oak Ridge, NC, and Kyle Riekena of San Francisco, CA; 4 great granddaughters and 4 great grandsons.
Frances was preceded in death by her parents, husband Lyle, daughter (Mary) Gayle, and four siblings; Lucille Livengood, Josephine Bluhm, Maureen Rademaker Ryan, and Gerald Ryan.
She moved with her family from Jerseyville to Delavan in 1942 and graduated from Delavan High School. After her marriage Frances became an extraordinary farmwife/homemaker, known for her beautiful flower beds, vegetable garden and enormous strawberry patch. She generously shared berries or preserves with neighbors, visitors and family. She canned or froze garden produce and homegrown meats, raised chickens for eggs, pasteurized fresh milk and prepared exquisite, healthy meals that always included dessert!
Her favorite pastimes included ballroom dancing, card games of any kind, wintering in FL and making new forever friends wherever she went, holding each one close to her heart. To her family’s delight, Frances never turned down an opportunity to travel with any one of them, especially pleasing to her was to visit more family! Frances’ large extended family brought her the greatest joy and pride of her lifetime.
When daughter Gayle passed in 1985, her faith in God and sharing her grief passage gave her strength and purpose. Eventually 2 dear friends and neighbors (having also lost adult children) joined Frances to form a local chapter of Compassionate Friends. Their mission to support grief-stricken parents continues to be an active presence through the Pekin chapter.
As a young mother, Frances joined St. John’s (Sand Prairie) Lutheran Church, was confirmed, and committed herself to pass her faith to her children. This is the legacy we hold dearest, the example of love she set before us. She taught Sunday School for a number of years, worked for church guilds and volunteered for a number of years at Ewe’s Treasures Consignment Shop to benefit Good Shepherd Lutheran School of Pekin. She worked her assigned schedule until her health became prohibitive, a great disappoint to her.
Her funeral will be at 11:00 am Saturday February 20, 2021 at St. John’s (Sand Prairie) Lutheran Church in Green Valley. Pastor Chris Sansom and DCE Bill Krueger will officiate. Visitation will be from 9:00-10:45 am Saturday at the church. Burial will be at Green Valley Cemetery. The funeral will be livestreamed at www.stjsp.org/live. Davis-Oswald Funeral Home in Delavan is handling the arrangements.
COVID quarantine measures of masking and social distancing will be applied for the visitation and funeral in order to keep all who attend safe. The family fully understands if you cannot attend for any reason yet would be honored to hear from you online if you have the time.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to her church, 13443 Townline Rd, Green Valley, IL 61534 or Pekin Compassionate Friends, #1525 1500 N. Mayfield Ct. Trivoli, IL 61569.
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