DeAnn Lynn Pence

DeAnn Lynn Pence, 71, of Chillicothe, Ill., died peacefully January 16, 2019 at Unity Point Health Proctor in Peoria, Ill. surrounded by her family.

She was born August 4, 1947 in Socorro, N.M., to Dee (Stirling) and Shirley Gerard. She has two younger brothers, Blake (Sonja) Gerard of Socorro, N.M. and Blaine Gerard of Henderson Nev. Her brothers loved her dearly and still respect and admire her big sister status. She was a 1965 graduate of Socorro High School and studied at New Mexico State. She has maintained lifelong friends in Socorro and loved returning home to spend time with them.

Her great looks, dancing skills and strong willed attitude won the heart of Ray LeVern Pence and they were married October 20, 1967. They moved to Chillicothe, Ill., and for 51 blessed years they were sweethearts, teammates and best friends. They raised three daughters, Stacie Pence-Bailey of Groveland, Ill., Stephanie Tex of Groveland, Ill., and Sarah Goodman of Huntersville, N.C.

She was a wonderful mother who excelled at everything family: holidays, passionate sports fan, school booster, Girl Scout leader and created a remarkable childhood for her daughters. She had a great love of all animals even the squirrels in her yard that drove Ray crazy. Lynn worked for SEAPCO for more than 18 years and was a beloved teacher to many. She loved cooking, gardening, water sports, music, dancing, traveling and reading. She was a devout Christian and was a member of Chillicothe First United Methodist Church.

Lynn's nine grandchildren were her heart and joy. She gave the best hugs and made a delicious glass of chocolate milk. She gifted her love of learning and curiosity to all of her grandchildren. She was also known to be a favorite niece, aunt, cousin, neighbor and friend. She was well known for her kind hearted nature and her genuine smile. She will be dearly missed by all who knew her.

Cremation rites will be accorded and a celebration of life will be held at a later date, if it ever stops snowing in Illinois. The family also plans to gather in Socorro in her memory. Arrangements were handled through Weber-Hurd Funeral Home in Chillicothe. Online condolences may be made through Lynn's facebook page or www.weberhurdfuneralhome.com.

Her family would like to thank the staff at Proctor for their attentive care. In lieu of flowers we ask that you donate to the charity of your choice in her memory. Lynn would like for you to spend time with your family, read a good book, use proper grammar and to not be afraid to try green chili on just about anything.