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Rose Rice

June 6, 1922 October 24, 2011
Rose Rice
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Obituary for Rose Rice

Rose Elizabeth Rice of 1025 South First Avenue, Morton, IL, died peacefully at home on October 24, 2011 from natural causes, in her 90

th

year.  She was born as Rosa Auguste Michel.  When she was 3 years old, her parents, Herman and Bertha Michel, immigrated to the United States from Leibolz (near Fulda), Germany.  She proudly would tell her grandchildren that she sailed 12 days on the SS Republic steamship, and arrived at Ellis Island on Columbus Day, October 12, 1925. Rose grew up in Elgin, IL and had a wartime romance with a local Navy engineer, Stuart Lee Rice (8/16/1920 – 8/28/1988). She was a real-life “Rosie the Riveter”, as she worked at a defense plant, riveting firing pins.  On a 1945 furlough, Stuart asked her to marry him on top of the Empire State Building.  They were married at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Elgin on June 25, 1949, and built their own house in Topeka, KS by themselves in 1951.

Rose was a loving and caring wife, grandma, and mom, and helped her 4 children through college and marriage.  She was a long-time member of Blessed Sacrament Church of Morton and watched the church be built from across her front lawn.  She was active in the Altar and Rosary Society, Morton Art Guild and the Morton Garden Club, and local Senior Centers.  Painting, baking, and square-dancing were her favorite pastimes, and she was a well-known local artist who enjoyed oil, water color and china painting, along with making ceramics and leaded glass. She won many art competitions at the state level and in Morton, Pekin, Peoria, Bloomington, and Mesa, AZ, where she spent the winter months lately.  She enjoyed painting landscapes, desert scenes and European scenes.  Rose is also on the Wall of Honor, and contributed an Oral History, for the Ellis Island Immigration Museum.

Surviving are 13 grandchildren, one daughter, three sons and a sister.  Children include Nancy (& Robert) Patterson of Washington, IA, Ronald (& Tiina) Rice of Cedar Grove, NJ, David (& Marge) Rice of Elgin, IL, and Gregory Rice of Morton, IL. Her sister is Anne Zwicky of Crystal Lake. She is preceded in death by her husband Stuart Rice, her brothers Herm Michel and Charles Michel and her grandson Jordan Patterson. Rose was a loving and giving person, who will be sorely missed. She was a foster mom, friend and mentor to many, and often helped local senior citizens.

Visitation will be held on Saturday, October 29, 2011 at the Blessed Sacrament Church, 225 E. Greenwood St. Morton, IL 61550 from 9 am to 10 am with the funeral mass immediately following with Rev. Mark DeSutter officiating. Burial will be after a funeral luncheon at the Resurrection Memorial Garden (mausoleum), Peoria, IL.  In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Blessed Sacrament Building Fund or Tremont Senior Meals ,P.O Box 579, Tremont, IL 61568

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