Shirley Mae Hamende, age 83, formerly of Kankakee, Illinois, passed away on March 1, 2021 at the Sanford Hillsboro Hospital in Hillsboro, North Dakota.
She was born March 17, 1937 in Kankakee, Limestone Township, the daughter of Joseph & Viola (Gardner) Loica. She graduated from Herscher High School, Herscher, Illinois in 1955 and on September 8, 1956 she married her high school sweetheart Gerald “Jerry” Hamende at St. Rose of Lima Church in Kankakee. After high school, Shirley’s proficiency in shorthand and her ability to type over 100 words per minute landed her an Executive Secretary position for the Strasma Family, owners of the Credit Bureau of Kankakee County and Lowe Seed Co. After 15 years in the work force, Shirley wanted to spend more time with their 3-year-old son John and in 1970 she became a full-time homemaker. Shirley had lived most of her life in Kankakee and moved to Fargo after the unexpected passing of her husband Jerry in 2010 to be closer to John and his family.
She remained living on her own until she got pneumonia at the end of Nov 2020. Shirley never got over her illness but she fought hard to get better for her family, although her heart was already in heaven with her loved ones. To keep her safe from COVID-19, her family moved her to the Sanford Hillsboro Care Center where she received the care she needed for the remainder of her life.
Shirley was an avid reader, movie and TV enthusiast, and list maker - she had kept a list of every book/movie she has ever read/watched. She kept up with all current events and was an avid White Sox and Bears fan. She enjoyed reading the Herscher Pilot, USA Today, and Kankakee Journal, and she really enjoyed Facebook, as it kept her connected with many family and friends.
She loved to follow her grandson Curtiss’ bands, and the band members were very sad they lost their #1 fan. She and her granddaughter Lexi stayed connected by sending notes as well as commenting on each other’s posts; challenging each other along the way. She so enjoyed watching her family grow and continue to grow on Facebook via baptisms, proms, graduations, college days, marriages, births, and yearly birthdays. She used Facebook messenger to chat with family members (some of them daily). She posted about anything her 83-year-old mind wanted to voice.
Shirley lived a very blessed life and loved spending time with family and sharing family memories. She is survived by only son John Hamende (Jennifer) of Fargo, ND, grandchildren Curtiss Hamende of Moorhead, MN and Alexiss Hamende (Tyler) Muchow of Moorhead, MN, sister-in-law Dianne (Meyer) Loica, and sister-in-law Betty Lovell. She loved being an aunt, great aunt, great-great aunt, godmother, cousin, and friend to many, including Blythe Rogers who was her closest childhood friend for 80 years.
She is preceded in death by her parents, Joseph and Viola Loica; her only brother, John Loica; her beloved husband, “Jerry” Hamende; and too many family members to list.
Public Visitation for Shirley will be on Tuesday, March 16, 2021 from 5-7 p.m. at Clancy-Gernon-Hertz Funeral Home, 1480 West Court Street in Kankakee, Illinois 60901. A private family viewing and service will be held for her on March 17, 2021, as this would have been her 84th birthday. Burial will be at St. James Cemetery, Irwin, IL.
Memorials will go to the family’s wishes.
Please sign her guestbook at www.clancygernon.com.