Cover photo for Retha Mae Jiles's Obituary
Retha Mae Jiles Profile Photo
1923 Retha 2014

Retha Mae Jiles

March 31, 1923 — October 3, 2014

Retha Mae Jiles, 91, of Plano, died October 3, 2014 at Hillside Rehab & Healthcare in Yorkville. She was born in Wayne Co, IL on March 31, 1923 to Calvin and Ferne Wakefield. She was raised with her three siblings on a 20 acre farm in Southern Illinois. Times were hard but they never went hungry. She grew up appreciating everything she had and always felt like a “lucky lady”. Retha married James A. Jiles on June 8, 1945. They moved to Northern Illinois in 1948. She loved and took care of his coon dogs, but he always brought them to her for approval before he owned one. They enjoyed camping trips together and they had 31 fun years of marriage until his passing on June 14, 1976. Retha learned to drive at the age of 53. Her husband, Jim, had just passed away and she did not want to become dependent on her children. Her first vehicle was a Volkswagon Beetle with a stick shift. Later, she bought a Volkswagon Rabbit which she hitched up to her camper; traveling solo to Southern Illinois to visit friends and relatives. When she decided to give up driving in her early 80s, Retha did her traveling on a three wheel bicycle. One summer, she rode 400 miles just around town. She rode her bicycle until the age of 89 when a broken hip changed her world one month after her 89th birthday. Retha was not a member of any church but she was a believer. She always said “my God makes house calls”. She was loving, independent, generous, and always shared with those who were in need. She is survived by her sons, James A. (Arlinda) Jiles of Plano, Jerry Jiles of Montgomery, and daughter, Patricia (Richard) Anderson of Plano, grandchildren, Julie (Darryl) Cummins, James L. Jiles, Craig (Monica) Coffin, and Melanie (William) Jacob, great grandchildren, Desiree, Alyssa, and Carter Coffin, and Pvt. 1st Class Austin Coffin of the Louisiana National Guard, Elora and Ilyana Jacob, several nieces and nephews, and some wonderful neighbors on Church Street. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Jim, brother, Robert Wakefield and sisters, Anna Jean Crask and Betty Francis. Friends may visit from 4 pm to 7 pm on Monday, October 6 at the Beverage Family Funeral Home located at 104 Terry Street in Sandwich, IL. Graveside services will be held Tuesday, October 7 at 11 am at the Little Rock Township Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to the Open Door, Disabled American Veterans, or the donor’s choice of charity. Arrangements by Beverage Family Funeral Home in Sandwich www.beveragefamilyfh.com
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