|Josephine Kennedy, of Galesburg, died Friday, September 6, 2013 in Aurora.
She was born on April 3, 1917 in Monmouth, the daughter of Harry and Marie (Glas) Themanson. She married Jeremiah Kennedy on April 6, 1941 in Monmouth. They enjoyed 63 years together, he preceded her in death on June 2, 2004. Josephine is survived by three daughters, Connie Summers of Galesburg, Cindy (Jim) Newport of Aurora, and Mary Prow of Chicago; one son, James (Debbie) Kennedy of Galesburg; and a sister-in-law, Anne Luetger of Naperville. She is also survived by 14 grandchildren, Jim (Nicole) Summers, Sarah (Jeff) Leonard, Joseph (Heather) Summers; Mary Newport, Katie (Chris) Arko, Mike (Marianne) Newport, Beth (Shawn) Sullivan, Meagan (Jake) Koehler; Christine (T.J.) Nolan, John (Melanie) Prow, Janet Prow, Kevin Prow; Meghan Kennedy and Patrick Kennedy; twenty great grandchildren, and one great great grandson. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, and three sisters.
Josephine attended Western Illinois University and received a certificate in teaching. Her first teaching job was in a one room school house in Cambridge where she stayed for 2 years. She then taught at Mable Woolsey in Knoxville for 30 years. She loved teaching and always referred to her students as her "kids." The most important things in her life were faith, family, food, and friends. She was a faithful and devoted member of St. Patrick's Catholic Church and had recently been attending Corpus Christi Catholic Church, and she was a member and past president of the Altar and Rosary Society. Josephine enjoyed entertaining at her house and will always be remembered for her great homemade pizza. Music was a big part of her life and the sounds could always be heard echoing through her home from her record player. She and Jeremiah owned and operated Jo-Ann Food Market for a few years on the corner of 1st and Liberty Streets in Galesburg. Josephine had a great interest in collecting things and an even greater interest in giving those things away. Josephine was very philanthropic. She never turned anyone away that came to her door in need.
Funeral Mass will be 9:30 a.m. Saturday, September 14, 2013 at Corpus Christi Church. Rev. William Miller, IC will officiate. Burial will follow in St. Joseph's Cemetery. Visitation will be 5-7 p.m. Friday at Watson-Thomas Funeral Home, Galesburg. The rosary will be prayed at 7 p.m. Donations may be made to the St. Vincent DePaul Society.