Norma Jean Schafer Wilson died at home on October 27, 2020 after a long illness. She was born November 9, 1928 in Newton, Illinois, the daughter of William Schafer and Dorothy (Rodgers) Schafer. She grew up living both in Newton and Fort Madison Iowa, attending St. Joseph Catholic School in Fort Madison from elementary school through high school. After high school she was employed by the Fort Madison Evening Democrat newspaper at a time when not many women worked in newspapers.
Norma married Robert Wilson on January 14, 1951 in Fort Madison. They lived in Biloxi, MS, Fort Madison, IA, Springfield, IL and Burlington, IA before moving to Champaign in 1965. While raising her family in Champaign, she was employed by the Champaign-Urbana Courier newspaper in the classified department. She was always very clever with words and wrote great “pick a present” jingles. She was later employed as office manager for a dentist, Dr James Vohs. Years later patients would greet her affectionately when they would meet her in public, remembering her kindness and warmth.
After retirement, she enjoyed traveling and loved to talk about her adventures.
Norma was a wonderful mother, grandmother, and great grandmother. She was fiercely loyal to her family and listened to problems without judgement. Throughout her life, she was an incredible cook for her family and enjoyed cooking for others in her home.
Norma is survived by her loving husband of 69 years, Robert E. (Bob) Wilson, 3 children,
Julie Wilson Horst (Robert) of San Jose Calif, Jay Wilson (Jeanne), Springfield il and Chuck Wilson (Mary) of Champaign. She had 9 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren.
Grandchildren Lisa Horst Clark (Josh) Kirkland Washington, Kevin Horst Los Angeles Calif, Erin Poppenhouse (Ty) Mt. Juliet Tn. Colin Wilson, Springfield Il. McKinzie Wilson, Springfield Il. Jeremy Hunt (Renee) Champaign, Blake Hunt (Sasha), Tuscola. AJ Wilson (Nicole) Champaign, Cully Wilson (Savannah) St Petersburgh Fl.
Great grandchildren Eleanor Clark, Parker Poppenhouse, Presley Poppenhouse, Noelle Hunt, Ty Hunt, Alexis Hunt.
Norma was a member of Holy Cross Catholic Church and her faith was an anchor and comfort to her throughout her life. She will be remembered in a Funeral Mass on November 7, 2020 at 10am at Holy Cross Church, Champaign. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to Carle Hospice or to the donor’s choice.
The family wishes to thank the wonderful care that was given to Norma by Carle Hospital, Kirby Hospital, Monticello, and Carle Hospice.
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