Cover photo for Grace (Jo) Josephine Malley's Obituary
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Grace (Jo) Josephine Malley

June 11, 1928 — November 1, 2023

Mendota, IL

Grace (Jo) Josephine Malley

Grace Josephine “Jo” (Ohme) Malley passed away at Stonecroft Village in Mendota, IL, on November 1, 2023. Jo was 95.

Visitation will be 10:00-11:00AM on Saturday, January 6, 2024, followed by 11:00AM funeral service, both at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Earlville.

Born June 11, 1928, in Ottawa, Jo grew up on her family’s farm in Leland with her parents, Arthur Andre Ohme and Karen "Carrie" Swenson Ohme, and her five older siblings, one of the many 100% Norwegian families in the area.

Jo attended Leland High School and worked in the office of Mutual Life Insurance Co. in Rockford, IL after graduating high school in 1946. She also attended secretary school in Rockford.

On September 10, 1949, Jo married James (Jim) Malley at Bethany Lutheran Church in Leland, and they were married for 61 years before Jim’s passing in April of 2011. Upon marrying, Jim and Jo moved to Oceanside, California, to be near the Camp Del Mar base where Jim was stationed in the US Marine Corps.

Jim and Jo lived most of their years in Earlville, IL, where they raised three children and ran E. W. Malley & Co. plumbing and heating downtown. Jo also took classes at IVCC upon becoming secretary/bookkeeper. The couple enjoyed trips to South America, the Bahamas, Acapulco, Austria, Salzburg, Germany, the British Isles, Hawaii, and the Caribbean. Jo and her sister-in-law traveled to Norway, where her grandparents emigrated from. As a family, they frequented the local state parks, especially Matthiessen “Deer” Park, as well as family vacations to Door County, Lake Delavan, Lake Ripley, Wagon Wheel Resort, camping by Thompson River in Colorado, and visiting family in Salem, Oregon in a camper. The whole family joined in summer potlucks at the golf course.

Jo served on many committees and as President of the Earlville Country Club Auxiliary, room mother at the Earlville grade school, and volunteered in devotions, flower committee, altar guild, and other roles at Earlville Immanuel Lutheran Church where she was a member. She was a member of many bridge, pinochle, and card clubs throughout her life and always enjoyed hosting ladies for games.

Jo was always a wonderful hostess and created a fun and inviting atmosphere full of music (often leading to singing). Family dinners were always a beautiful, delicious spread that everyone looked forward to (including her soufflé and 3-layer ribbon salad). She was famous for her homemade pies, especially rhubarb, and on holidays would always make her husband his favorite—mincemeat.

She made life very special for her grandkids with evening rides on the golf course; playing golf with clubs Jim cut down to size; and participating in the Memorial Day parade in the family’s old Buick, followed by carnival rides (her favorite ride was the Tilt-A-Whirl). There were bicycle rides around town, “helping” at the family store, sleepovers, baking Christmas cookies, lots of games, and swinging on the front porch or tree swing.

The great-grandkids couldn’t wait for monthly luncheons at Great Grandma Jo’s with broccoli casserole and lots of treats; playing Crazy 8’s and Old Maid; and trips to the pumpkin farm. She made them special Easter baskets and faithfully sent cards for every celebration throughout the year.

She is survived by her daughters, Crisanne (Gary) Forysthe of Sandwich, IL and Colleen O’Malley of Santa Rosa, CA; one daughter-in-law, Loretta Malley of Yorkville, IL; eight grandchildren, Jessica (Eulojio) Ortega of Sandwich, IL; Jasmine (Ian) Riggle of Santa Rosa, CA; Justin (Maria Bustos) Forsythe of Glendale, CA; Zachary (Katherine Smith) Knowlton of Petaluma, CA; Margaret (Jeffrey) Joray of Grayslake, IL; Kathryn (Andrew) Niemerg of Dieterich, IL; Blake Malley of Yorkville, IL; and Anya Malley of Yorkville, IL; eight great-grandchildren; several nieces and nephews; friends and extended family.

She is preceded in death by her parents Arthur and Carrie; her husband James Edward Malley; her son Edward Malley; and her siblings Virgil "Laverne," Lucille, Arthur, Elyot, and June.

Memorial gifts may be directed to the Earlville Lions Club / Lions Club Foundation or the Illinois Conservation Foundation.

Arrangements were entrusted to Beverage Family Funeral Home. Online condolences may be made at www.beveragefamilyfh.com

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Grace (Jo) Josephine Malley, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Memorial Visitation

Saturday, January 6, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

Immanuel Lutheran Church

415 S East St, Earlville, IL 60518

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Memorial Service

Saturday, January 6, 2024

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

Immanuel Lutheran Church

415 S East St, Earlville, IL 60518

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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