Violet Irene (Openshaw) Sturtz-Lilley

April 11, 1919 ~ December 19, 2018 (age 99)

V. Irene Lilley, 99 of Walloon Lake, Michigan, will be spending her first Christmas in Heaven. She fought a courageous battle with cancer at the home of her daughter. She passed away peacefully on December 19, 2018.

Irene was born on April 11, 1919 in Toledo, Ohio, the daughter of Albert and Mary (Guy) Openshaw. She was preceded in death by her brother, Albert Openshaw and sister, Hilda Hubble.

On January 1, 1937, she married Ralph Sturtz. Together, they had three children, Carole (Arnold) Hudson of Walloon Lake, Michigan, Richard (Germaine) of the Republic of Panama and Walloon Lake, Michigan, and Bruce (Lynne) Sturtz of Gaithersburg, Maryland. She is also survived by her grandsons, David (Christy) Sturtz and Michael Sturtz (fiancée Sarah Speth); great grandchildren, Kailey, Addsyn, Cassidy, Colin and Caden; dear friend, Carl Harmon; friends, Jane and Mike Cuba; and caregiver, Janet Simon; and all her special friends at the Boyne City Senior Center.

After Ralph’s death, Irene married Frederick Lilley, he also preceded her in death.

Irene worked as a table attendant for Ford Motor Company in the Henry Ford Executive Dining Room for many years. She was an extremely active person and loved to try everything at least once. Irene and Frederick liked to spend their evenings at their favorite dance club. She was a Girl Scout troop leader for many years. Irene also held the title of President of the Ford Motor Girl’s Club, where she would plan trips and teach classes about how to change a tire and other basic maintenance on vehicles. She did not let her advanced age stop her from her adventures. Irene was a world traveler to numerous places including Morocco and Iceland. She loved to golf and went white water rafting in her late 80’s. For many years, she volunteered as a guide at the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village and continued leading tours until her 90’s. She also enjoyed sailing and boating with her special friends. She recently joined the Boyne City Senior Center and visited with her many friends there.

Irene’s family would like to extend a sincere and heartfelt thank you to the wonderful hospice workers that cared for Irene.

Friends and family wishing to make a charitable donation in Irene's memory are asked to consider the Boyne City Senior Center and St. Jude's Children's Hospital (in care of: Carole Hudson, PO Box 250, Walloon Lake, MI 49796).

The family plans on a celebration of her life on April 11, 2019 when she world have celebrated her 100th birthday.

Donations may be made to:

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis TN 38105
Tel: 1-800-822-6344

Boyne Area Senior Center
411 E. Division St., Boyne City MI 49712
Tel: 1-231-582-6682

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