Margaret McAvoy, 94, of Geneseo, died Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, at the Long Term Care facility of Hammond-Henry Hospital, Geneseo, fortified by the Last Sacraments. A Mass of Christian burial will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 21 at St. Malachy Catholic Church, Geneseo. The Rev. Michael Pakula will officiate. A fellowship/luncheon will follow in the church hall immediately after Mass. A visitation will be held two hours prior to the service at the church. A family Rosary will precede the visitation, and the post luncheon burial will be in the McAvoy family plot in Oakwood Cemetery, Geneseo. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorials be made to St. Malachy’s Catholic Church or school, the Geneseo Food Pantry, or the Margaret McAvoy Memorial Fund to be distributed among her favorite charities. Vandemore Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.
She was born on April 26, 1919, in Burns Township, the daughter of August and Mary (Rose) Sherbeyn. She was the youngest of 11 children and attended rural schools in Cornwall and Cambridge Townships. She was a complete farmer’s daughter, spending her youth in both domestic and agricultural chores on a large grain and livestock operation. She also served in those activities for her older brothers and sisters as they established their own families.
She married Sherman McAvoy on March 30, 1940, at St. Anthony’s Church, Atkinson and was a farm homemaker for 62 years, with the majority of those years on the Centennial McAvoy Farm in Munson Township, where they raised their four children. He died in 2002. A devoutly religious person, and a great believer in the power of prayer, Margaret was active in the Altar and Rosary Society at St. Malachy’s and served in various capacities in the Parents Club at St. Malachy’s School. In the 1950s, she helped organize a neighborhood club of several farm wives who planned family socials, conducted a card club and met on a monthly basis for more than 50 years. She was an accomplished seamstress and was especially adept at alterations and modifications of existing clothes, changing sizes and styles for her family. Her baking and cooking served six generations, creating numerous family favorites over those years. Margaret was totally committed to her family and was equally happy preparing for and participating at both large and small gatherings.
Survivors include her children, Mary (Gene) Chapman of Georgetown, Texas; Pat (Jim) Stout of Geneseo; Ted (Marilyn) McAvoy of Geneseo and daughter-in-law, Sherry McAvoy of Geneseo; eight grandchildren, Christine Treadwell, Cathleen Chapman and Carla Amacher, all of Texas; Scott McAvoy of Chicago; Michelle Ganson, Jeff McAvoy and Jon McAvoy, all of Geneseo; and Christopher Stufflebeam of Moline; and 18 great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband; a son, Michael McAvoy; an infant son, Billy Joe; grandson, Ben McAvoy and all her brothers and sisters and their spouses.
Page 2 of 2 - Margaret’s family wishes to express their gratitude and appreciation to the staff and administration of the Long Term Care facility at Hammond-Henry Hospital for their extraordinary service on her behalf. Their unending care and genuine compassion enhanced her quality of life for more than three years.