Erika Baillie-David (Van Dur Furth Bagdanowich), age 92, kicked open the pearly white gates on January 9th, 2022, after her earthly body could no longer contain her unrelenting spirit. Erika’s legacy is carried on through her children, Sonja and Clive, her granddaughter Elaine, and through all the lives she came into contact with.
Erika was born in Insterburg, Germany, now part of modern-day Russia on December 18th, 1929. She was displaced during WWII and at the end of the war was a ward of a German baroness who emigrated to England where she met and married her husband Patrick on April 3rd, 1956.
She was a talented seamstress, starting her career at Dalton’s and made her daughter’s wedding gown as well as her own mother of the bride's dress. She was very creative, artistic and the queen of repurposing things - nothing went to waste. She knitted her children’s sweaters and when they were outgrown, unravel the garment and make something else out of it. Skeins of yarn were turned into booties, afghans and throw rugs. She was an avid gardener, loving her rose bushes, flowers, fruit trees and vegetables, canning the bountiful harvest and making jams and jellies. She loved her family and fought for her husband to receive pioneering open-heart surgery at the Cleveland Clinic in 1975 when the procedure was in its infancy, giving him another 20 years to walk this earth with her.
Her legacy continues through her daughter Sonja Baillie-David (husband, Glenn Skoff), son Clive Baillie-David (wife, Patricia) and granddaughter Elaine Skoff (fiance Ian Barr), as well as numerous nieces and nephews. Her husband Patrick Eugene who departed this earth on May 20, 1991 was eagerly awaiting her return to spirit.
A celebration of Erika’s life will begin on Sunday, January 23, 2022 with a visitation at Tezak Funeral Home, 1211 Plainfield Road in Joliet from 12:00 p.m. until 4:00 p.m. Private interment will held the following day, and Erika will be laid to rest at Plainfield-Township Cemetery.
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