Karen M. Ellis

Posted 3/14/22

MENDOTA – Karen M. Ellis, 79, of Mendota, passed away March 10, 2022 in her home.

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Karen M. Ellis


MENDOTA – Karen M. Ellis, 79, of Mendota, passed away March 10, 2022 in her home. 

Funeral services will be Saturday, March 19, 2022 at 1 p.m. at the Merritt Funeral Home, Mendota with Rev. Bill Clark officiating. Burial will be at Restland Cemetery, Mendota. Visitation will be Friday from 4-7 p.m. at the funeral home.

Karen was born Nov. 5, 1942 in Chicago, the only child of Anthony and Marie (Younkus) Lukas.

Karen married Martin Grzesiak. Together they had five children, Andrew (Iryna) Grzesiak of Elmwood Park, Connie (John) Wakefield of Oakland, Ark., Lewis Grzesiak of Alsip, Martha Grzesiak (deceased) and Stanley Grzesiak of Georgia. She later married David Marsink

Karen is survived by four of her five children, her husband John Ellis of Mendota, grandkids Melissa Grzesiak, Matthew Grzesiak, Matthew Wakefield, James Wakefield, Megan Quarles, Danielle Quarles, James Quarles and Bogdan Brezden, and great-grandchildren Chris Trinidad, Oliver Nott and Parker Grzesiak. 

She was preceded in death by her first two husbands, her parents, grandparents, her daughter Martha Grzesiak and her favorite Aunt Patricia Guzik.

During her working years Karen became an Avon lady, a pharmacy technician, a Boy Scouts of America and a Brownie and Junior Girl Scouts leader, a distributor of Watkins products, Mendota Area Red Cross Secretary and a PTA newsletter editor. She was an avid reader and a member of the Mendota Book Club and Mendota Garden Club and volunteered for Mendota Hospital auxiliary. She was the church secretary for Zion United Methodist Church in Mendota from 1990 until retiring in 2016. 

In lieu of flowers, Karen's wishes were to consider making a donation to Graves-Hume Public Library Mendota or Illinois Valley Animal Rescue. Online condolences may be left at www.merrittfh.com.