Dewitt Obits

Grace V. Dempsey of Clinton

CLINTON - Grace V. Dempsey, 80, of O'Fallon, IL, passed away on Wednesday, May 9, 2012, at Cedar Ridge Health & Rehab Center, Lebanon, IL, after a lengthy illness. Gracie was born December 26, 1931, at Edwardsville, IL, the daughter of Charles W. and Edith, nee Noble, Edwards. After graduation from Knoxville High School, Knoxville, IL, she attended Illinois State Normal University and Western Illinois University. Gracie married the love of her life, Derrel Loren Dempsey, on August 23, 1953, at the Methodist Church in Knoxville, IL. Gracie was a devoted wife of her husband, Derrel, as he served his country in the United States Air Force for 30 years. During those years she moved with their five children to many bases all over the world, including several countries in Europe and the Philippines. Wherever they were located, Gracie was not only a loving wife and devoted mother, she was active in supporting her husband and fulfilling the duties of the wife of an Air Force officer as Derrel was promoted through the ranks to become an Air Force Colonel. Gracie was a gracious hostess and often entertained members of the armed forces in their home. Upon returning to the United States and retirement in O'Fallon, IL, Gracie was a member of First United Methodist Church of O'Fallon, where she was a member of Methodist Women and the Mary Martha Circle. She served as chairperson of the P.E.O., which she truly enjoyed. Gracie was very active in the American Parkinson Disease Association, and was part of the research effort at Washington University School of Medicine. Gracie is survived by her loving and devoted caregiver husband, Colonel Derrel L. Dempsey, USAF, retired; two sons, Darrell (Pamela) Dempsey, of Grand Prairie, TX; Guy (Anne) Dempsey, of O'Fallon, IL, three daughters; Tamera (Michael) Luth of Amarillo, TX; Minda Lawson of Madison, Wisconsin; Lisa Dempsey and her husband Klaus Grillmaier of Dusseldorf, Germany; two sisters, Charlotte McGee of Clinton, IL, and Joann Heidloff of Bloomington, IL, 13 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren. Preceding Gracie in death were her parents, parents in law, two brothers and two sisters. Memorials in honor of Gracie may be made to First United Methodist Church of O'Fallon Special Building Fund. Expressions of sympathy made be directed to Friends may call Tuesday, May 15, 2012, from 10 to 11 am at First United Methodist Church, 504 E. Hwy. 50, O'Fallon, IL. A celebration of Life Service will be held at 11 a.m. following visitation at the church with Pastor Phil Gardner, a long standing family friend, to officiate. Arrangements were entrusted to Schildknecht Funeral Home and Cremation Services, O'Fallon, IL