DANVILLE – The season is over. The ball park is empty. One of our community's greatest sports fans has moved to the best seat in the house to view her beloved Cubs, Vikings, Illini, Dans and Jaguars.
Margaret Downing of Danville passed away on Friday (Oct. 5, 2012) at home surrounded by family.
She was born in Danville on Jan. 6, 1921, to Vernela Ringler Felgenhauer (Slabaugh) and Louis Frank Felgenhauer. She married Elmo A. Downing (deceased) on March 22, 1940, in Danville. An infant son, Louis Frank Downing, preceded her in death.
She is survived by her children, Judith Haton (Ron, deceased), Sherry Cannon, Becky Muirhead (John) of Champaign and Stephen Downing.
Her grandchildren are Pamela Garcia (Michael) of Springfield, Bart Haton of Danville, Stephen Cannon of Denver, Colo., Susan Muirhead (Michael Dunne) of Studio City, Calif., Megan Everette (Matt) of Champaign, Joshua (Stephanie) Downing of Catlin, Jordan (Courtney) Downing of Danville and Jeremy Downing (deceased).
Her great-grandchildren are Jarryd (Joann) Braaten of Westville, Chloe and Cannon Garcia of Springfield, Hannah and Jacob Downing of Catlin and Landon Downing of Danville.
She is also survived by three sisters: Barbara Karakachos (John, deceased) of Oreana, Betty Palmer (Jack, deceased) of Danville and Cheryl Denton (Danny) of Danville.
The great joys of her life were family and her love of sports. She enjoyed watching her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren in all of their school activities, musical performances and sporting events.
She was a longtime sports fan of the Cubs, Danville Vikings, the Illini, the Dans and Jaguars. At the age of 91 she could still be found at these events rooting for her teams.
She loved playing bingo and going to the Riverboat in Peoria. She was well-known in the Danville area for her enjoyment of having lunch with her family. She dined out on a daily basis enjoying many of the area's restaurants.
For the past 30 years Margaret has resided at the Valley View Heights Apartments where her neighbors and the staff have shown their love and affection.
Margaret retired from General Electric where she worked from 1955 to 1983. She was loved by her co-workers who named her the "Bingo Queen" and the "Best Popcorn Ball Maker" in town. She spread good cheer in the workplace and was well-loved by all who were fortunate to know her.
The family would like to extend special thanks and gratitude to her physician, Dr. Sodhi, and to the medical staff of Provena United Samaritans Medical Center, St. Vincent's Hospital, Indianapolis, Colonial Manor Nursing Home of Danville and Provena Hospice Care.
The quality of her care and the sincere and loving attitude of her caregivers will always be remembered. A special thank you to her hospice caregivers Nancy, Lori, Vicky and Amy.
A service to celebrate the life of Margaret Downing will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 10, at Sunset Funeral Home and Cremation Center, A Life Celebration Home in Danville. Rev. Dr. Jimmy Hopper will officiate. Burial will follow in Spring Hill Cemetery.
Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. today (Tuesday), also at Sunset in Danville.
In lieu of other expressions of sympathy, the family suggests a gift in Margaret's name to Danville High School's Athletic Department.