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Colette Sicks

Colette M. Sicks, 94, of Normal, died Sunday (Dec. 17, 2017) at Heritage Health, Normal, after a brief final illness.

She was predeceased by her husband of almost 50 years, John F. Sicks, and is survived by her children, John F. Sicks Jr., Bloomington; James N. Sicks, Cambridge, Md.; and Jennifer A. Sicks, Normal. Also surviving are two grandchildren, Catherine Forbes, Cheltenham, Pa., and William (Shoshana) Sicks, Philadelphia, Pa; and three great-grandchildren, Alexander Forbes, Lucas Sicks and Greta Sicks.

She was born March 24, 1923, in Chicago, to Henry J. Meyer and Alice Powers Meyer. She grew up in Chicago and in southern Wisconsin, graduating from Janesville High School in 1941, and entering the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She left Madison in 1943 to begin a career as a copywriter in the advertising department of Marshall Field & Co. She met her future husband, John Sicks, who joined the department following military service in Europe. They were married on June 22, 1946, and resided at his family home in Wheeling.

During the 1950s and 60s, she raised her family, reported part-time for the Arlington Heights Daily Herald, and volunteered with a variety of social services agencies in the northwest Chicago suburbs.

In 1968, having resided in the Illinois cities of Wheeling, Barrington and Rockford, the Sicks family moved to Normal. She joined the staff at Illinois Wesleyan University and in her more than 20-year career there served as IWU director of publications, writing, editing and producing almost all of the university’s newsletters, admissions and development materials and other promotional work. She also served as a speechwriter for the university president and senior staff, worked with faculty to promote achievements in scholarship at the university, and composed the text cast on the bronze plaque made for the dedication of Evelyn Chapel. She was proud that although her pursuit of a degree was interrupted by war, she worked as an equal with administration and faculty with doctoral degrees.

Following a private family service, she will be interred with her husband at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery, Elwood. The family requests that memorials be made to McLean County Museum of History. Arrangements are by Kibler-Brady-Ruestman Memorial Home, Bloomington.

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