Celebrating the life of Mary Kay Duncan
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She attended St. Mary’s Academy in Nauvoo, Illinois, graduating Valedictorian in 1956. She married Ralph Lewis in 1959, divorcing in early 1966. She met Thomas C. Duncan in October, 1967, and they married on April 6, 1981. He survives, along with her son, Ralph Ernest (Kimberly) Lewis, stepsons Thomas “Glen” Duncan, Ronald (Annette) Duncan, and stepdaughter Carolyn (Richard) Ferguson, 12 grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren, two nephews Tim (Marie) Wiles and David (Kerri) Wiles, three nieces, Julie (Rick) Crutchfield, Debbie (Rose) Palladini, and Michelle Palladini Clayton. Also surviving are numerous cousins residing in Sweden. She was preceded in death by her parents, her sisters, Sonya (Howard) Wiles and Ebba Jean (Frank) Palladini and her nephew James (Ann) Wiles.
After graduating Mary Kay moved to Colorado Springs, CO where she was Legal Secretary for Judge John C. Young, of Young, Young & Cates, who was one of the Presiding Judges for the Nuremburg War Trials. She returned to Peoria and was Legal Secretary for the law firm, Young & Sullivan, until John D. Sullivan became a Circuit Judge. Thereafter she worked for Attorney Elliott B. Young, Esq., as Corporate Secretary of his various business adventures including Land Record & Guaranty Company of Illinois, and Peoria Mobile Homes, Inc. from 1957 to 1986, when the businesses were sold and the law practice closed. She then worked for Neighborhood Periodical Club in charge of Quality Control until she retired in June of 1993.
She was a member of Celestial City Chapter #333, Order of the Eastern Star; Queen Christina Court #4, Order of Amaranth; Judea Shrine #10, Order of White Shrine of Jerusalem; Abbas Grotto Cauldron #49, Daughters of Mokanna; Otho Temple #36, Daughters of the Nile; and Women of the Moose, Farmington Chapter #470.
Mary Kay was an avid game player, enjoying bingo, MahJongg and all types of cards games. She was extremely active in the IL0517 Chapter of TOPS, relishing the support and camaraderie of her fellow TOPs friends while excelling, since joining in 2003, and exceeding many weight loss goals. These achievements earned her many TOPS and KOPS awards and recognitions. In her own words, “I’ve been in it so long because of all the support from everyone around you. If you gain (weight), people say ‘we’re glad you’re here,’ and if you lose (weight), everyone claps for you.” Her hard work and diligence resulted in her becoming a TOPS Chapter Queen.
Tom, a 1996 Potentate of the Mohammed Shrine Lodge, and his Esteemed Lady Mary Kay spent decades together providing services, volunteering, and fundraising for the Shriners. Mary Kay was a brilliant cook who excelled in making Swedish dishes. She was a loving mother, wife, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt, cousin, and friend. She was also an expert at preparing large feasts, as she was the consummate hostess, utilizing her wonderful cooking skills to create beautiful and delicious meals for her family and friends. Often, those meals were followed by a bout of card playing around the dining room table lasting well past midnight. She created beautiful memories that will live on in the hearts and minds of her family, friends, and all that knew her. Her one line zingers always had everyone in stitches and her words of advice and wisdom will forever remain in our hearts.
Mary Kay was of the Catholic faith. Services will be held at Wright and Salmon Mortuary. Visitation will be at 10:00 on Friday, January 8, 2021 followed by a service at 11:00 with burial following at Swan Lake Memory Gardens. Rev. Stephen Barch will officiate. Social distancing and COVID 19 restrictions will be followed.
“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith (2 Timothy 4:7)”
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to Mohammed Shrine Building Fund, 4201 Industry Drive, Bartonville, IL 61607.
Friends may sign the online guestbook or send condolences to www.wrightandsalmon.com
2416 N North St
Peoria, IL 61604
2416 N North St
Peoria, IL 61604
4601 Route 150
Peoria, IL 61615