At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Kankakee County Humane Society
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers
Life Story / Obituary
People often consider themselves blessed by the many events of their lives – sharing love with a spouse, caring for children, experiencing new adventures every day. Rosadele M. Kitsmiller was one of these special people. She spent 45 years serving the community as a caring and compassionate nurse, and somehow also managed to be a loving and devoted wife and mother to her two daughters. Hardworking, independent, devout and caring, Rosadele succeeded in all aspects of her life, affording her both a happy place in life, and a family that loved her dearly.
The 1920s were a fantastic period in our nation’s history, when the sounds of progress could be heard in every village and city across America. It was the birthplace of jazz, the golden age of industry, and above all, a time of plenty. Rosadele entered this bustling world on March 5, 1926, in the city of Chicago, Illinois. She was the oldest of two children born to Bernard Siebert, a solider, and his wife, Adeline (Burk), a nurse. Rosadele and her brother, David, grew up in the small town of Delrey, where they enjoyed sleigh rides in the wintertime to school as well as for trips into the neighboring town of Onarga.
Rosadele was five when tragedy struck their family - her father died of tuberculosis, leaving her mother to raise two children alone. Her grandmother then came to live with them, and she was a midwife, often leaving out at all hours of the night to deliver babies. Although times were hard, Rosadele often recalled many happy childhood memories of listening to The Shadow on the radio, cracking and cleaning black walnuts for a treat and attending the school summer picnics. She and her brother raised a few pigs (for butchering), and tended their garden and chickens at home. During the 8th grade, Rosadele got strep throat and complications from it kept her in bed for a year. However, her mother taught her to be a strong and determined young lady and she completed her studies and was able to go on to the 9th grade.
Rosadele attended Onarga High School, where she was an excellent student, excelling in her studies in history, literature and theater. After graduating in 1943, she went to work in Chicago as a secretary for the Army. Rosadele and her girlfriend lived in the Bohemian part of the city, and they shared many stories of how they rubbed shoulders with artists, free thinkers and immersed in the exhilarating culture. However, after a year, her mother insisted Rosadele come home and start her training to be a nurse. With that, she began nursing classes at St. Mary’s Hospital in Kankakee with the understanding that if World War II continued, she would enlist in the Army and serve as a military nurse upon graduating. The war was over though by the time she graduated in 1947, so Rosadele started a new chapter in her life by getting married.
After saying “I do,” the couple moved around a bit, living in Illinois, Iowa and Nebraska. They also became the proud parents of two beautiful daughters, Diane and Nina. Unfortunately, Rosadele’s marriage ended, and like her mother, she raised her daughters on her own. She moved her girls back to Onarga near family, where she went to work as a private duty nurse in Fairbury. After a few years on her own, Rosadele remarried and they enjoyed time with great friends and taking motorcycle trips. It wasn’t long before Rosadele’s career path took a new turn when she went to work for two physicians as a surgical nurse. In time, Rosadele’s second marriage ended, and she remained in Fairbury until her youngest daughter graduated high school. As fate would have it, she crossed paths again with her high school sweetheart and they were eventually married. Over the next few years, the couple moved around, living in Evanston, Illinois, San Angelo, Texas and then back to Illinois.
In 1991, after a fulfilling career, Rosadele retired from nursing. With many hobbies and interests, she had lots of activities to keep her busy. With an adventurous spirit, she loved to travel and had taken many memorable trips, including to Grand Cayman, Cancun, various archeological sites, Epcot and a Caribbean cruise. She also took a paddle boat trip up on the Mississippi River, and enjoyed weekend jaunts to Chicago, Lake Geneva, Eureka Springs, Brown County, Indiana and Wisconsin Dells. Church was also an important part of Rosadele’s life. She was a very active member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Gilman, where she taught Adult Bible Study, Vacation Bible School, served on the Altar and Communion committees and was a member of the Rebecca’s.
In her leisure time, Rosadele loved going to operas, and was overjoyed to attend Wagner’s Ring Cycle. She had long been a student of learning, and as a voracious reader, she loved historical novels, westerns, mysteries and archeology publications, and attended a Book Club every Tuesday afternoon. A longtime football fan, Rosadele faithfully rooted for the Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings, but liked to poke fun at her family who were Chicago Bears fans.
Of all the great things in Rosadele’s life, time spent with her daughters, grandchildren and great grandchildren towered above all the rest. She loved to be surrounded by her family, and loved spending her time being a mother and grandmother to the people who brought her life immeasurable joy. Although Rosadele will be dearly missed, her legacy of love, dedication and faith leaves her loved ones with wonderful memories and a strong foundation to look to for comfort.
Rosadele M. Kitsmiller, 85, of Kankakee, IL passed away on Wednesday, December 21, 2011, at Manor Care Nursing Facility. She is survived by two daughters; Diane Siaroff (Bert Jacobson), and Nina (Jim) Gravelle; five grandchildren, 5 great grandchildren, and one great great grandchild. She is preceded in death by her parents, stepfather, Glecia Corbett, and her brother, David Siebert.
A gathering time for family and friends will be on Wednesday, December 28, from 5 p.m. until the time of service at 7 p.m. at the Kankakee Chapel of the Schreffler Life Story Funeral Homes. Pastor Christopher Sheets will officiate. Burial will take place at Del Rey Cemetery in Buckley, IL at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please make memorial contributions to the Kankakee County Humane Society. Please visit Rosadele’s personal memory page at www.lifestorynet.com, where you may sign her online guest book and share a memory with her family.