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home : obituaries : obituaries
December 18, 2018

10/15/2018 12:31:00 PM
Lila Atherton Ritchie
b. June 20, 1929 d. Oct. 12, 2018

SUN LAKES, AZ - Lila Atherton Ritchie, Thomson (IL) native, died October 12 in Sun Lakes, Arizona. Rites of cremation were accorded and a private interment will be in the family plot in Lower York Cemetery, Thomson.

A public Celebration of Life will be held later. Law-Jones Funeral Home, Savanna, assisted with arrangements.

Lila Jean Curley was born June 20, 1929, in Thomson, the daughter of Bonnie (Robertson) and Lynn Curley. She was a 1946 graduate of York Community High School, Thomson, and attended Western Illinois University. She married John C. Atherton July 27, 1947, and divorced in 1982. On February 13, 1993, she married Wayne W. Ritchie who died in 2002. In 2008, Lila re-met Bill DeLost and they were inseparable partners until his death March 2 2018.

Mrs. Ritchie was a journalist and while employed for 11 years with Carroll County newspapers received numerous regional, state and national awards for investigative, feature and community writing. She served as president of the Northern Illinois Newspaper Association in 1977-78.

In 1976, Mrs. Ritchie, her brother and sisters developed Buck's Barn, LynnWood Lynks and Estates on their childhood farm near Thomson where she served as manager until the complex was sold in 1984. She then was employed by Agri-King, Inc., Fulton, until 1994 when she retired as Vice President of Marketing. She served on its Board of Directors until her death. An avid golfer, she traveled extensively here and abroad, playing internationally recognized courses. In 2006, Mrs. Ritchie won the Super Senior division of the Arizona Women's Golf Association.

Survivors include a son Ronald (Charlotte) Atherton, Thomson; a daughter, Bonnie Atherton, Lake Zurich, IL; a daughters-in-law Rita (Stan) Scott, Leland, NC; three grandsons, Chad (Liz) Atherton, Bethesda, MD; Todd (Cameron) Atherton, Fairfax, VA, and Ryan Atherton, Lanark, IL; her first great-grandbaby due February, 2019; two sisters, Edna Mooney, Chandler, AZ, and Leona (Vernon) Mattie, Thomson; Bill DeLost's son David (Janis) DeLost and granddaughter Katelyn, Longville, MN; and daughter Dawn (Charlie) Dana, Crystal, MN; two stepdaughters, Lynn (Dan) Sellers, Belvidere, and Ann (Mike) Cini, Castle Rock, CO; five step-grandchildren, Amy (Rob) Davis, Paris, France, Doug (Kourtney) Sellers, N. Barrington, IL; Dr. Elizabeth (Mat) Williamson, Naperville, Jennifer (Eric) D'Souza and Tom (Cathy) Cini, Highlands Ranch, CO: ten step-great-grandsons and three step-great-granddaughters.

Mrs. Ritchie was preceded in death by her partner Bill DeLost (2018); husband Wayne (2002); a son, retired Colonel Michael J. Atherton (2001); her brother and his wife, Del and Marian Curley; parents; and an infant sister.

Memorials may be given in Lila's memory to Hospice of the Valley, 2020 Eastwoodside Court, Gilbert AZ. 85297 or the West Carroll High School Golf Team, memorials may be sent directly to the high school at 500 Cragmoor Street, Savanna, IL 61074.




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