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Audrey Bunting Canterbury

April 17, 1919 May 30, 2011
Audrey Bunting Canterbury
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Obituary for Audrey Bunting Canterbury

Audrey Bunting Canterbury, 92, of Peoria, Illinois, peacefully passed away at 3:28 pm on Monday the 30th of May 2011, surrounded by her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. The only child of Audrey Sanborn and Charles Smith Bunting, she was born on April 17, 1919 in Norfolk, Virginia. “Mickey”, as she was known throughout her life, exchanged wedding vows with her high school sweetheart, John Ross Canterbury, M.D., on September 7th, 1940, at First Presbyterian Church in Peoria, Illinois. They had been married 51 years when he passed away on October 31st, 1991. Moving from Louisville, Kentucky, to Peoria, Illinois, at the age of seven, Mickey attended public schools, including Peoria High School. In the summer between her junior and senior year, she was awarded placement in the National High School Institute’s Cherub Program (speech division) at Northwestern University. Mickey then attended Northwestern University, graduating with a degree in English and education in 1940. While at Northwestern Mickey was a member of Gamma Phi Beta and served as the sorority’s treasurer. A dedicated, fun-loving, and compassionate mother, she enjoyed painting, gardening, playing tennis and bridge, and the thrill of the hunt at estate sales. A perpetual learner, Mickey also took great pleasure visiting museums, shelling, birding and travelling the world. She enjoyed cooking and especially making divinity and fudge. Her community service included acting as corresponding secretary of the Junior League of Peoria, show chairman for the Crippled Children Auxiliary’s annual fashion show (now Easter Seals Auxiliary), serving on the board of the Children’s Home, and being an active member of the Methodist Hospital Service League. Mickey also enjoyed membership at the Country Club of Peoria, The National Society of Arts and Letters, As You Like It, and Lakeview Museum. Surviving are three children, Ross Erskine (and Susan) Canterbury, Jill Canterbury (and John) Wahlfeld, and Jan Canterbury Kaspar. Her six grandchildren, Jeffrey Stanton Wahlfeld, John Carter Canterbury, Christopher Canterbury Wahlfeld, Clay Deming Canterbury, Sarah Hyde Kaspar and Emily Sanborn Butenhoff loved her dearly, as did her six great-grandchildren, Hadley Larrie Wahlfeld, Jillian Bunting Wahlfeld, Ellory August Wahlfeld, Clay Deming Canterbury II, Cathrine Rae Canterbury, and Elin Aurelia Butenhoff. Mickey is also survived by her close gentleman friend of six years, Paul Sommer. An infant son preceded her in death. On Saturday, June 4th, 2011, a visitation celebrating Mickey’s life will be held from 4-6 pm at First Federated Church. Private inurnment of ashes will take place at the First Federated Church Columbarium at a later date. Memorial contributions may be made to Easter Seals Auxiliary, in care of Easter Seals UCP at 507 East Armstrong Avenue, Peoria, Illinois 61603 or Lakeview Museum at 1125 West Lake Avenue, Peoria, Illinois 61614.


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