Verna "Elaine" Downs, 81, of St. Charles went to be with her Savior on December 29, 2022, surrounded by family. She was born to Robert and Doris Bedenbender on October 10, 1941, in rural Brown County, Illinois. On March 6, 1960, she married Norman Downs. To this union were born five children (all surviving): Gordon (Pam) Downs of Hawk Point, Cindy (Tim) Robinson of St. Charles, Dwight (Joni) Downs of St. Charles, Stewart (Connie) Downs of O’Fallon, and Steven Downs of Wright City. Elaine was the very proud grandmother of 11 grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren.
She is also survived by her sisters and brothers: Betty Wenger, Norma Herbster, George (Bonnie) Bedenbender, Sharon (Don) Goldsborough, and Ralph (Tonya) Bedenbender. She was preceded in death by her parents.
Elaine worked as a homemaker, an accounting clerk at both ACF Industries and “Fireman’s Mutual Funds,” and as a secretary at Francis Howell North High School. After raising her family, she went to college while continuing to work full-time and earned a Bachelor of Business from Lindenwood University in 2000.
She had many friends and was adopted as “Grandma Downs” or “Mom Downs” by many students, coaches, softball players and wrestlers. Because she was a great cook, everyone loved for her to bring her special dishes to gatherings and parties. Probably the most requested dishes were her Texas sheet cakes, muffin top cookies, biscuits and gravy, and homemade donuts on family float trips.
Some of her interests and passions were bowling, playing volleyball, playing softball, and watching her kids, grandkids and great-grandkids at activities and sporting events. She was not only a passionate fan, but you could almost always find her volunteering as a scorekeeper. Her great-grandkids always looked forward to holiday cards in the mail with her signature $2.00 bill enclosed.
Elaine spent many years as an actively involved member at First United Methodist Church in St. Charles. She will be greatly missed by all who knew her.
Visitation will be held on Saturday, January 7, 2023, from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at Hutchens-Stygar Funeral and Cremation Center, 5987 Mid Rivers Mall Dr., St. Charles, MO 63304. Funeral services will be held on Sunday, January 8, 2023, at 2:00 p.m. at Hutchens-Stygar Funeral Home.
Additional services will be held on Monday, January 9, 2023, from noon to 2:00 p.m. at Triplett and Wood Funeral Home, 900 West Wilson, Rushville, IL 62681 with interment in Palm Cemetery.
Memorial Contributions have been suggested for Palm Cemetery, Rushville, Illinois.