Marcia Ann Pritchett

As was her nature, Marcia Ann Pritchett made a quiet exit from this world on Sunday, December 19, 2021, in Springfield, Illinois.

Born to Stanley and Eleanor (Veseling) Sturm on November 30, 1949, the oldest of five children, Marcia’s charge on Earth was to be a quiet, humble servant to God. She fearlessly lived her faith with a peaceful spirit…always clear-minded as to what is most important in life. No matter what life handed her, Marcia thrived. She was patient during affliction, selfless, and never sought the spotlight. Caring for the needs of others was what she dedicated her life to, as reflected in her career choice…nursing.

Marcia was married to the love of her life, Gene, for 51 years. Through all of life’s ups and downs, Gene and Marcia fought for one another, took turns being strong, and maintained an unbreakable bond of friendship. They put their two children, Danny and Sara, at the forefront of their lives. Marcia wasn’t one to seek the latest trends, social status, or extravagant vacations. She instead built her family around tradition, great food, stacks of books, weekly Mass, get-togethers with her friends and family, attending sporting/academic events, and the comfort of daily routine.

Together, Gene and Marcia endured their son’s long battle with cancer (Neuroblastoma), followed by his untimely death in 1990 at the young age of 16. While the death of a child breaks many marriages, it only strengthened theirs. After Danny’s death, Marcia went to work for Marion Unit 2 School District. Ironically, a big part of her job was to care for children with medical needs, including a child that had also battled Neuroblastoma.

In 1998, Gene and Marcia became grandparents. To say their three grandchildren, Danny, Marisa, and Malea, felt loved and supported is an understatement. These two savored every moment of their grandchildren’s lives. From the first moment…holding brand new babies…to visiting dorms and apartments of recent, they didn’t miss a moment in between. Marcia made sure their bellies were full, their spirits were covered in prayer, and that they felt seen, heard, and validated.

The events of Marcia’s life were like a puzzle…some pieces fell easily into place. Others took considerable time to see how they fit in to the big picture. What we experience on this Earth doesn’t always make sense and may even cause us downright distress. But Marcia’s life proves life is not a series of disconnected events…there is a reason for everything. With her death being the final piece of the puzzle…the full picture is now visible. And our souls can see it now…there was a beautiful meaning to each piece.

Marcia is survived by her husband and best friend, Gene Pritchett; her daughter, Sara Vanhala, who idolized her; the three grandchildren she doted on, Danny, Marisa, and Malea Vanhala of Chatham; her siblings, Joe Sturm (Sharon) of Houston, TX, Laura Neale (Bob) of Springfield, Steve Sturm (Beth) of Chatham; brother-in-law, Dan Milleville of Altamont, and sister-in-law Judy (Junior) Davis of Marion. She is missed and loved by nieces, nephews, grand-nieces and nephews, and many close friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Stanley and Eleanor Sturm, her son, Danny Pritchett, and her sister, Brenda Milleville.

Marcia dedicated her life to being a light of love to everyone lucky enough to cross her path. She will be deeply missed.

Visitation: 4 – 7 pm, Wednesday, December 22, 2021 at Staab Funeral Home – Springfield.

Funeral Mass: 10 am, Thursday, December 23, 2021, at St. Joseph the Worker in Chatham.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Make-A-Wish foundation. This organization touched Marcia’s life throughout her son’s illness, and she was forever grateful for the help they provided.

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