Elizabeth Petertil, 103

Pilgrim Church and community volunteer

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Elizabeth "Pat" Petertil, 103, of Oak Park, died on Sept. 29, 2013. Born and raised in Moore, Okla., she attended the University of Oklahoma and was a member of Alpha Gamma Delta sorority. She worked in Washington D.C. for the federal government, where she met her husband, Victor "Pete" Petertil, on an arranged date, when he visited from Chicago. Married in 1942 at Thorndike Chapel on the University of Chicago campus, they lived in Ottawa during World War II, while Pete worked as a designer in the LST shipyards on the Illinois River. The couple eventually moved to Oak Park, living first on North Lombard and later on Fair Oaks. As a homemaker, she was an involved parent in the local schools and Pilgrim Congregational Church, while devoting time to service and arts organizations, such as PEO and the Village Art Fair. When her children were older, she found enjoyment in running the ETC shop, a periodic offering of gifts from an Oak Park coach house, being a receptionist for a local physician, and sampling the Chicago dining scene with her husband.

The Petertils retired to Santa Cruz, Calif., in 1975, where gardening and service to the local Museum of Art and History, the Newcomers Club, and the innovative seniors organization, Grey Bears, took much of her time. Since late 2007, she had been living at Holley Court Terrace in Oak Park.

Pat Petertil is survived by her sons, Jeff (Joan), Kerry (Julie) and Tucker; her grandchildren, Justin (Thea), Jessica, Hannah and Charlotte; and her great-granddaughter, Ella. She was preceded in death by her husband.

A memorial service was held on Oct. 5 at Pilgrim Congregational. Memoriams may be made to the Oak Park-River Forest Food Pantry or the Santa Cruz Grey Bears.

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