URBANA – Janice Marilyn Miller Hartman passed away peacefully on Tuesday (May 26, 2015) after a long battle with frontotemporal dementia.
Jan was born on May 2, 1937, to Andrew and Mercedes Miller and grew up in Matherville, Ill.
Jan graduated third in her class from Sherrard High School in 1955. Jan returned to school after starting her family, attending Lincoln Land Community College in Springfield, graduating in June of 1972 with an associate degree of science. She then went on to graduate from Sangamon State University with a bachelor's degree in psychology a year later.
Jan worked for a year at the Springfield Mental Health Center and then moved to Champaign where she earned a master's degree in social work from the University of Illinois in January of 1976.
The UI became home to Jan where she taught, administered the undergraduate program and served as an assistant and associate dean for the School of Social Work for many years.
Jan was a huge fan of Illini sports and attended many events over the years. One of Jan's shining moments was when she was able to be an "assistant coach" for Lou Henson.
Very passionate about helping young parents and their children, Jan was a founding member of the Crisis Nursery of Champaign, serving as president in 1986. Jan was also a founding member of Champaign County CASA.
After retiring, Jan and her husband Chuck moved to Columbia, Mo., for a time. Jan continued her volunteer work in different capacities in between traveling to see family and trips around the world. As health concerns advanced, Jan and Chuck moved back to Urbana.
Jan had an infectious laugh and was always willing to lend a helping hand.
Left to treasure her memory are her husband, Charles Cowger of Urbana; her six children from her marriage to Willis D. Hartman Jr., Lisa (Aaron) Sedig of Sterling, Lori (Jim) Petry of Sugar Grove, Mark Hartman of Champaign, Mitch (Hope) Hartman of Farmville, N.C., Leslie (Kevin) Rutland of Moscow, Russia, and Kris (Dean) Edwardson of Auburn, Wash.
Jan loved her grandchildren "infinity and beyond" and told them so every time she saw them and with every birthday card she sent. Grandchildren include Logan and Caleb Sedig, Adam, Ben and Grace Petry, Laurel Hartman, Aubrey (Logan) Rogers, Kyle Rutland, Mitchell (Katherine) Hartman, Laura, Mathew, Michael, and Maddux Hartman, Erika Mueller and Nikolaus Edwardson. Great-grandchildren are Ryker Johnson and Hudson Rogers.
Jan is survived by her sisters, Marlene Carlson and Diane Nagovan, as well as many friends and extended family.
Visitation will be from 4 to 6 p.m. Thursday, May 28, at Lux Memorial Chapel, 1551 E. Grove Ave., Rantoul. Funeral Mass will be at 11:30 a.m. Friday at St. Anthony Catholic Church, Matherville, Ill., with interment to follow immediately.
In lieu of other expressions of sympathy, memorials can be made to: Crisis Nursery of Champaign, 1309 W. Hill St., Urbana, IL 61801 (www.crisisnursery.net) or St. John Catholic Newman Center, 604 E. Armory Ave., Champaign, IL 61820.