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Sharon Jean Bachmann

Sharon Jean Bachmann Obituary
A beautiful ray of sunshine, Sharon Jean Bachmann, 77, of Western Springs, IL was called home into the arms of her late husband, Mike, in the early hours of May 30th. Cancer drew her into treatments her body just wasn't ready for. She was the oldest daughter of the late Orville (Snow) and Miriam (Mim) Nothdurft; sister to Janis Freeland and Jill Wright; adoring mother of Tim Bachmann (Carol), Laura Cubillos (Jose) and Andy Bachmann (Tracy); and beloved grandmother to Lukas, Judah, Stella, Mateo, Esperanza and Remy. Sharon grew up across the street from Bradley University in Peoria, IL, where her father was the Dean of Admissions. She went on to graduate from the school with a degree in Education in 1963. Her family spent their summers at Camp Highlands for Boys in Sayner, Wisconsin, where her parents were on the staff for more than 60 years. It was there Sharon fell for the love of her life, former camper and soon to be owner/director, Mike Bachmann. The two had a summer romance that never ended. In 1964, they moved to La Grange, IL to pursue teaching careers. Sharon taught second grade at Cossitt Avenue Elementary School. Just prior to Tim's birth, Mike and Sharon moved to Western Springs, where they happily spent the rest of their lives. For Sharon, this meant directing the pre-school at the First Congregational Church for 24 years, and throwing herself into leadership roles at many organizations. AAUW, Questers, PEO, Allied Arts, Music Club, Goodwill, and many church committees at the 'Congo' were all on her docket over the decades. She went nonstop and never complained about being too busy! She loved it! She would say, "I'll do that!!" She was awarded with the Western Springs Citizen of the Year in 1980 for her contributions to the community. Sharon would seek out widows and have them over for dinner. Casseroles were dropped off for any family with a sick parent. Hosting luncheons and dinner parties was routine, always decorating the house to the hilt for whatever holiday or occasion. She quilted together regularly with a close group of pals. In more recent years, she wintered in Gainesville, Florida, and quickly found wonderful friendships there. Summers were consumed with life at Camp Highlands for Boys - perhaps her greatest legacy. She spent more summers at the camp than anyone in its 115 year history: 74! There, along the shores of Plum Lake, she was responsible for feeding several hundred hungry boys and men three times a day, while also running camp's guest Lodge - for 50 summers! She was the welcoming, motherly soul of the place, buzzing around in a golf cart. If a camper or counselor had a talent for something, she would gush over them with genuine enthusiasm. She was a gracious smile, a cheerful greeting - a sweet hug. She saw the best in people and made them feel great about themselves. Present. Hard working - she gave all for the camp! Nothing was more important than her family, the object of her most intense affection and generosity. Pontoon boat rides on Plum Lake, meals at camp, family vacations in Florida, and so many other special times will never be the same. We realize with gratitude how lucky we have been; the special way her modest, endearing spirit has made us who we are. What an example! Absolutely everything she did was about giving to others and spreading joy. She lived the camp motto: 'I'm Third.' We can only take comfort in the thought of her back on the sunny side of the lake - with the man she loved the most… Due to the timing of the camping season, a Celebration of Life will be held on Sunday, September 15th at 2pm at the First Congregational Church, 1106 Chestnut, Western Springs, IL. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the First Congregational Church of Western Springs or the Mike Bachmann Campership Fund. Please make checks for the Campership Fund out to: American Camping Association of Illinois ? Mike Bachmann Campership Fund and mail to Tim Bachmann at 116 Madrone Avenue, San Anselmo, CA 94960.
Published in a Chicago Tribune Media Group Publication on June 13, 2019
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