Mary Ellen Tracy, 86, formerly of Jerseyville, died Thursday, April 21, 2016 at St. Joseph's Home in Springfield.She was born in Jerseyville on April 25, 1929, one of four children born to Frank & Ellen "Nellie" (Massey) Tracy.Mary grew up in Jerseyville, and attended St. Francis Catholic School, and graduated in 1947 from Jersey Township High School. She then went on to pursue her education at the University of Illinois and Parkland College, both in Champaign.She began working at Garrard Publishing in the early 1950's, and it was there that she met her lifetime partner, Beth Richards. Mary Ellen & Beth made their home in Urbana until Mary's retirement from the publishing business in 1997.After retirement, she and Beth opened a small business in Urbana, The Book Rack, and later moved to the Prairie Village Retirement Home located in the Chanute Air Force Base in Rantoul.In her spare time, Mary Ellen devoted much of her time volunteering, in particular with the Carle Hospital in Urbana, as well as St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Urbana, and St.Malachy's Catholic Church in Rantoul.She is survived by numerous nieces and nephews, along with two sisters in law, Dorothy Tracy of Mt. Sterling and Lois TracyMissel of St. Louis, Mo.In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her lifetime partner, Beth Richards in 2004; and three brothers & a sister in law, William & Marjorie Tracy, Robert Tracy, and John "Jack" Tracy.Visitation will be from 10 to 11 a.m., Monday at Crawford Funeral Home in Jerseyville.A Mass of Christian Burial will take place at 11:15 a.m. Monday at the St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Jerseyville, with Father Patrick Gibbons officiating.Burial will be in the St.Francis Xavier Cemetery in Jerseyville.Memorials may be given to the St. Joseph's Home Activity Center in Springfield.
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