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1928 Phyllis 2024

Phyllis F. Batson

July 11, 1928 — January 9, 2024

Aledo, Illinois


Phyllis Batson, age 95 of Aledo, died peacefully at Brookstone of Aledo on Tuesday, January 9, 2024, with her family at her side. Funeral services will be Tuesday, January 16th at 11:00 AM at Speer Funeral Home, Aledo. Visitation is Monday from 4 to 6 PM at the funeral home. Private burial will be held in Aledo Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the Aledo United Methodist Church or the Viola Public Library.


Phyllis Fern (Reay) Batson was born July 11, 1928 in Braceville, IL, the fourth and last child of Matthew and Florence (Brooks) Reay.


She was raised in Braceville and graduated from Gardner-South Wilmington High School as Valedictorian of her class. She spent some time traveling with her girlfriends, and worked while attending secretarial school. She worked through her twenties as a secretary at the Joliet Arsenal. While attending night classes in bookkeeping, she met the love of her life, Robert (Bob) C. Batson. She knew he was the one because of his kindness and dimples. They married September 7, 1957 in Braceville. They began married life in Joliet, Illinois where they had three daughters, each one her favorite. They moved to Aledo, Illinois when Bob transferred to the Rock Island Arsenal.


Phyllis was an active member of the Aledo United Methodist Church, becoming church secretary once her daughters were grown. She trained several ministers during her years as secretary, working way past “retirement age”. She was an original member of the church’s hand bell choir and loved performing with them. She was also an active community volunteer, including leading Girl Scout troops and serving on the Council, being a member of Eastern Star, and fundraising for her favorite causes. Her talents and interests included sewing, needlework, gardening, her flowers, and cooking. She loved cooking for her family, and playing cards. Her family and friends affectionately referred to her as a “card shark.”


She loved everyone. Phyllis loved and supported her children and grandchildren in all their endeavors, cheering from the sidelines and stands. She loved getting to know her great-grandchildren. She never missed sending a card for birthdays and other events. She was a lifelong Cubs fan, and she passed this love on to her grandchildren, taking them to games and Wrigley Field kids’ days. The Cubs paid her back for her unwavering support by winning the World Series in 2016, a very happy day indeed.


Her home the past eight years was at Brookstone Assisted Living of Aledo. She made many friends there and knew many of the residents. She enjoyed playing bingo, doing crafts, and the special events and meals they offered. Faith and family were her two main priorities. She loved Jesus with her whole heart.


Those left to cherish her memory and cheer on the Cubs for her are her children Paula (Steve) Gustafson  of Orion, Il, Pamela (Sam) Ferguson of Palatine, Il, Lillian Batson of Aledo, Il; grandchildren Scott, Elizabeth and Darcy Gustafson; Joseph (Carrie) Ferguson, Laura (Miguel) Rivas; great-grandchildren Roman Lee, Grayson and Willem Gustafson, Dylan Baumbach, Cashel and Serena Ferguson, and Samuel and Regina Rivas; many nieces and nephews and friends. Phyllis was preceded in death by her husband Robert; her parents; siblings and their spouses: Lenore (Roy) Burkhardt; Thomas (Agnes) Reay; Matthew (Evelyn) Reay; brother-in-law and spouse George (Audrey) Batson; nephew David Batson.


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