Eileen Sekera LaSorba, 84, died from complications due to cancer on January 24, 2018.
Born to George and Ethel Sekera in Chicago, IL, on February 27, 1933, Eileen’s numerous passions enabled her to fully live life and enrich the lives of those around her. She took pride in her garden, loved to sew, knit and crochet, enjoyed decorating (particularly in the Victorian style), played Bridge, traveled extensively, collected dozens of dolls, and loved Opera. Her beloved cat, Amber, brought her great comfort and companionship in her last months.
Eileen attended Miami University in Florida and graduated from Northern Illinois University. While attending Northern, she formed a friendship with Jill Dial. What began as a way to save money by carpooling together to and from night school, turned into a 50-year friendship. The women talked at least 3 or 4 times a week, sharing life and partaking in adventures, including a trip to the World Fair in New York with their children.
As a fifth grade teacher at Wauconda Grade School, Eileen was ahead of her time. She enjoyed finding ways to make her students excited about school by incorporating Picnic Days for perfect weekly attendance and Costume Days to teach history.
In 1979, she married John LaSorba and became a stepmother to his four daughters, giving them the same love and guidance she gave her own daughters.
Eileen traveled frequently on her own, with her daughters when they were young and into adulthood, and even with her grandchildren. She loved the exquisite, snow-covered Rocky Mountains and seeing her family in Colorado. She toured the pyramids of Egypt, walked the Great Wall of China, entered the Greek bath houses, bartered in the markets of the Caribbean, and cruised the Amazon River. In Oman, she got Henna tattoos with her granddaughter and visited the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque. She even scuba dived in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.
But Eileen’s greatest passion was her dolls. Her collection includes more than 100 pieces, each with its own story.
Eileen enjoyed attending the Opera and could often be found at Chicago’s Lyric Opera House. She loved theme parks and gave first-time riders advice that can apply to life as well, “Hold tight, yell as loud as you can, and enjoy the ride.”
Survivors include three daughters, Karen Degner, Susan Kottke, and Diane Wheeler; a sister, Jean Sekera; a brother, George Sekera; a sister-in-law, Celeste Sekera; eight grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.
The Celebration of Life Service will be held at 10am on Saturday, March 24, at Living Grace Community Church. Donations may be made in her name to a favorite organization.