Jean Marie Gignac
1930 - 2020
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Jean Marie (Frett) Gignac, 90, of Deerfield, IL, died on September 10, 2020, from complications due to dementia. She was born January 29, 1930, in Chicago, IL, to the late William and Edna (Finan) Frett. She grew up in Chicago's southside Gage Park neighborhood. Jean's father died when she was 12 years old and her maternal grandmother, Emma (Johnson) King, helped to raise Jean and her two younger siblings when her mother went back to work at Acme Steel Company. Jean graduated from Providence High School and then attended the College of St. Teresa in Winona, MN, graduating in 1951 with a B.A. in Business Administration. After college, Jean worked several different jobs including kindergarten teacher at St. Gall's Catholic School, administrative assistant for an insurance company and flight meal planner for United Airlines at Midway Airport. Jean met her husband, Bob Gignac, at a church dance and after a yearlong courtship, they married in 1955. Jean and Bob had a very happy 64-year marriage. They had 7 children and 5 grandchildren. Though Jean was ahead of her time as a woman with a college degree in the 1950's, she was never interested in pursuing a career. She was thoroughly fulfilled by her roles as a wife, mother and grandmother and devoted to her family. Jean was an avid reader, a crossword puzzle enthusiast, a talented knitter with a passion for making baby sweaters, and a generally creative person. She absolutely loved children. She befriended everyone (restaurant wait staff, store clerks, grocery store baggers, plumbers, carpenters, nurses, doctors, lawyers, etc.) by asking them with genuine interest about how their day was going, were they married, and did they have any children. Jean was a devoted Catholic. She loved attending mass and saying her nightly prayers. Jean did not like the spotlight; she was selfless, always wanting to help others. This trait was ever present in her final days as she continued to worry about the people around her even though she was seriously ill. She was always fun to be around; making the most mundane tasks a pleasure. Jean's smile, laughter and spirit were singular and will be deeply missed by all who knew her. Jean is survived by her sister Nadine (Frett) Kuhns; children Jeanne, Suzanne (Hans Drexler), Lynne, and Karen (Guy Vuckovic) Gignac, Michelle Schultz and Jennifer (Christopher) Michel; daughter-in-law Nancy Keder; grandchildren Corey and Emma Schultz and Amanda, Emily and Stephen Michel; sister-in-law Cathleen (Brinkman) Frett, brothers-in-law Roy and Ken Gignac, and numerous nieces and nephews. She is predeceased by her husband Robert Gignac, brother William Frett and son William Gignac. In her last year, Jean received patient care from her devoted and loving caregiver Ade Hughes. A memorial mass will be held at 10:00 AM on Saturday, September 19, 2020, at Holy Cross Catholic Church, 724 Elder Lane, Deerfield, IL 60015. Due to COVID restrictions, please review mass attendance guidelines and live stream information at Holy Cross website or call the Parish Office 847-945-0430. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Alzheimer's Association Illinois Chapter, 8430 W. Bryn Mawr, Suite 800, Chicago, IL 60631, 847-933-2413, For more information, contact Kelley & Spalding Funeral Home: 847-831-4260,

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Published in Chicago Tribune on Sep. 13, 2020.
Memorial Mass
10:00 AM
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September 17, 2020
My sincere condolences to Jean's family. I have such fond memories of her from many years ago; she was a very special lady.
Kathleen Richmond
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