Ann Theresa Gootee (nee Schoettker), age 69, passed away at her home in Glen Ellyn, IL in the early morning hours of Wednesday, October 6, 2021, after a determined and courageous fight against metastatic breast cancer. Her beloved husband Jim was at her side all the way to the end. Ann was born in Covington, KY on March 14, 1952, to Lawrence (Larry) and Ethel (nee Grone) Schoettker. Ann was a loving wife, stepmother, step-grandmother, sister and aunt who will be deeply missed by her family and many, many friends and colleagues. Ann is survived by James (Jim), her devoted husband and best friend of nearly 38 years; stepchildren Lisa (Joe) Morano; Renee (Craig) Olson; James (Karen) Gootee; Michele Bolvin; Denise Richardson; step-grandchildren Nicholas (Mary Ellen) Bolvin; Matthew Bolvin; Michael (Laura) Olson; Jordan Olson; Danielle Olson; Nathan Gootee; Alexander Gootee; and Kyle Richardson. She also leaves behind her brothers Leonard (Linda) Schoettker of Pittsburgh, PA, and Andy (Cindy) Schoettker of Cincinnati, OH, as well as many cherished nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents Larry and Ethel Schoettker, and her brother Jim (Sylvia) Schoettker.
Ann graduated from Notre Dame Academy in Park Hills, KY in 1970. She graduated from Thomas More University in 1974 with a B.A. in Mathematics. She was a member of Alpha Lambda Mu sorority where she developed many deep and lasting friendships, maintaining close ties with her sorority sisters for over 50 years.
In her professional life Ann was a Human Resources executive and served in numerous roles in that capacity over the course of her career, working for many Fortune 500 companies including Exelon, United Airlines, Quaker Oats and PepsiCo. She retired from PepsiCo in 2002 but continued to offer her knowledge, experience and guidance as a consultant for several years.
Giving back was extremely important to Ann, and she was very active in that regard in her community and her church. She served on the board of her Homeowners Association in several officer roles including president. As a result of her diagnosis, first of breast cancer and then when it metasticized, Ann was actively involved in breast cancer and MBC support groups through the LivingWell Cancer Resource Center, sharing her story and experiences openly and providing guidance and support to others, and walked a few times as a proud then-survivor in Northwestern's Cancer Survivors Celebration and Walks along the Chicago lakefront. Ann and Jim, through their charitable foundation, also support cultural and spiritual organizations, including the Joffrey Ballet and their current church, the Glen Ellyn Bible Church.
Ann was equally giving of her time and of herself in her spiritual community. At her former congregation, Village Green Baptist Church, Ann was lead instructor and ran for some years the church's refugee outreach whose mission was to assimilate foreign refugees and immigrants in their community to the US, helping them learn English vocabulary, homemaking and social skills, and American customs and traditions. One of Ann and Jim's favorite interactions with the refugees in the program was to prepare and serve a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, complete with a glorious roasted turkey and all the trimmings. She also served as chairperson of the Sharing Life Campaign, a capital campaign for the Church, and was an active and enthusiastic participant in weekly Bible study. As one fellow congregant put it, "Whenever there was a need, Ann and Jim always stepped up." At their current church, Ann and Jim regularly attended Sunday services via live-stream, Covid and a compromised immune system preventing in-person participation.
Ann lived a fully engaged and active life in her time on earth, completely informed by her and Jim's deep and abiding love for one another, the deep friendship and support of her many, many friends and colleagues, especially Judy Kinman and Mary Jo McFadden, and above all, her faith and trust in her Lord. Ann, we will cherish your memory, for all the good you've done and the lives you've touched. Jim and family would like to recognize and thank Ann's excellent oncology team at the Robert H Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center at Northwestern University led by Dr. Regina Stein for their compassion and unwavering dedication to Ann's care throughout her difficult journey. Ann had complete and utter trust in her team.
Family and friends are invited to visit from 3:00pm to 7:00pm on Friday, October 29, 2021, at Williams-Kampp Funeral Home, 430 E Roosevelt Road, Wheaton, IL 60187, 630-668-0016. Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, October 30, at 10:30am at Glen Ellyn Bible Church, 501 Hillside Avenue, Glen Ellyn, IL 60137, Pastor Kelly Brady, officiating. In lieu of flowers please consider making a donation to one of the following organizations: Robert H Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University; Living Well Cancer Resource Center, Geneva, IL; Glen Ellyn Bible Church, Glen Ellyn, IL.
Dear Family of Ann, I worked with Ann at Quaker Oats and wanted you to know she was such a great coach, colleague, and `smiler´ that brought the sunshine everyday into the office. She was inspirational and such a delight to work with. My sincerest condolences to all of you, Carol
October 27, 2021
So sorry to hear of Ann's passing. We worked together at MCI many years ago. I have always had great respect and admiration for Ann. God Bless. We will keep you all in our prayers.
October 26, 2021
Mr Gootee, I was saddened to hear of your loss from Jimmy. I offer our prayers and sympathy to you. And Ann. A lovely obituary. I recall some fond times together, usually around golf. I remember ann w a big smile on her face. So sorry for your loss.