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Floral 26


Eileen (Sampson) Summers

May 17, 1939 ~ January 2, 2019 (age 79)

On January 2, shortly after noon, after several days with her earthly eyes closed, Eileen Summer’s spiritual eyes were opened to see the heavenly band of angels coming to escort her thru the gates of pearl to see her Lord Jesus and to her new heavenly home with no more pain and no more mental anguish of the dementia that she had suffered with for 12 years. She had been a resident of Greentree Memory Care in Mount Vernon for the last seven years of her life.

A Visitation will be held Saturday, January 5, 2019 at from 10:00 A.M. to 12:00 P.M. at Christian Fellowship Church in Mount Vernon, Illinois with a Celebration of Life Service to follow at 12:00 P.M. with Pastor Tom Hunter officiating. Interment will follow at Mount Vernon Memorial Gardens in Woodlawn, Illinois.

Eileen was born in Mattoon, Illinois on May 17, 1939, the last of the nine children, seven girls and two boys, to James and Irma (Ellis) Sampson. The last girl and only one to be given part of her mother’s name, Irma. So to avoid having two people in the house called by the same name, the family chose to call her by her middle name, Eileen.

Eileen went to grade school in Mattoon and graduated with the Mattoon High School class of 1957. She was the only one in her family to further her education when she chose to go to Decatur to attend the DMCH School of Nursing, graduating with the class of 1960. In 1959, before her graduation, she was introduced to a young man on the steps of Chaps Roller Rink by the name of Donald Summers who would later become the love of her life.

In November of 1961, she and her future mother-in-law drove her 1960 Chevy to El Paso, Texas where Don was serving in the US Army at Fort Bliss and they were married the 18th in a ceremony at Zion Lutheran Church. After Don’s discharge, they returned to Decatur where they were blessed with three children. Their first child was born on their fourth wedding anniversary.

First and foremost, Eileen was a wife and mother devoted to her family and her grandkids as they arrived on the family scene. She raised her family while she practiced her nursing skills as the office nurse for three different Decatur doctors before she and Don retired in 1988 and moved to Mount Vernon in 1989. She was active in Jefferson County HCE for a few years and also helped Don raise their miniature horses. She continued her nursing skills in a home health capacity in Mount Vernon before finally retiring in 1995. She and Don became snowbirds for several years going to Arizona to avoid the cold Illinois winters. That ended in 2009 when the change in locations and travel seemed to elevate her battle with dementia.

She is survived by her husband of 57 years and their children, Teresa (Ari) DeAndrado, Ariana, Anthony, and Ashley, all of Phoenix, Arizona, Beth (Brian) Eilers, Briley, Braden, Bryce, and Bailey, all of Chandlerville, Illinois, and Matthew (Tricia) Summers, twins, Madalyn and Jacob, Abigail, Samantha, and Aaron, all of Deactur, Illinois; brother, Robert Sampson of Foosland, Illinois; sister, Helen (Ken) Johnson of Mattoon, Illinois; and 23 nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents; sisters, Norma Torano, Joan Weber, Elflida Fleshner, Rosalie Pierce, and Marge Ryan; brother, James Sampson; sister-in-law, Guylene Sampson; and nephews, Rodney Ryan, Jr., David Sampson, and James Fleshner.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in Eileen’s honor to the Alzheimer’s Association and will be accepted at the funeral home.

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