CARBONDALE – Kathalye June Staley, 97, of Carbondale, Il, passed away on May 11, 2020 at Integrity Healthcare of Carbondale.
June was born on June 14, 1922 to Frank Victor and Wilma (Moore) Campbell in Sesser, Illinois. June married Glenn Staley in 1947, who preceded her in death in 1992.
June is survived by her children: John Staley, Donna Waller, Bill (Jody) Staley. Five grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
June was born at a time when the family experienced the Great Depression and World War II. By 1940, she had graduated from Sesser Illinois High School and began to attend a teachers college known at that time as Southern Illinois Normal in Carbondale, Ill. She achieved a two-year teaching certificate and returned to Sesser where she began her teaching career.
After the end of the war she decided to “sprout her wings” as a young single lady and took a teaching position in Terre Haute, Indiana. Not too far away was a young discharged sailor (Glenn Staley) who had entered Purdue University to work on his Master’s Degree in Engineering. She met the young man at a dance, and that was the beginning of their 45 year union.
They were married in 1947 at the Methodist Church in Sesser, Il.
They returned back north, where first son, John, was born in Jolette, Illinois the year of 1949. But by 1953, they had made their way back to Southern Illinois and began living on the Campbell farm southwest of Sesser. Second son, Bill, was born that year in the near-by town of Du Quin, Illinois. Shortly after, the family moved into the town of Sesser and lived in a home previously occupied by June’s grandfather, Drue Moore. June taught school in Sesser, and Glenn joined the Illinois State Highway Department in the Carbondale District office.
By 1958, they moved closer to Glenn’s work, and June began teaching in the Hurst-Bush School District, a comfortable drive from their east side Carbondale home. Donna came into the family in 1962, when June notice this cute, curly black haired student who happen to be living in facility in Hurst. (Donna became her most personal and devoted daughter until she passed. Donna literally looked in on Mom daily, took her for drives around the area, etc. while she was a resident at an assisted living facility up until the last few weeks of her life. In the course of her caring, Donna had to make many difficult trips over to the care facility to assist with Mom’s care at times when things weren’t going so good.) Raising their children was of high priority during these years. Little league baseball, scouts, family trips, riding horses with a horseback club were all part of the activities.
After a career of teaching which included other locations; Carterville and Herrin school districts, June retired in 1987. June and Glenn ramped up their traveling with their pull behind camper. They spent the next five years taking grandkids on multiple week camping trips out into the west seeing national parks, etc. They also would spend most the summer parked in a camp site on Leach Lake in Minnesota to cool off, but also to be near grandkids.
June lost her husband Glenn in 1992 when he passed on due to an aortic aneurysm. Within a couple years, she moved into a new side-by-side duplex in the Liberty Village Senior Living complex on the west side of Carbondale. She had good years in her duplex as she was able to, somehow, bring all the important relics from the two story home with her. Each relic reminded her of someone dear to her from the past.
She reached out and made many good friends. What could have been depressing, lonely years turned into actual golden years for them as they all enjoyed socializing, traveling, attending events such as reunions, concerts at SIU and many other leisure activities.
June was able to stay in her duplex until 2014. It became apparent that she needed to be moved into the beautiful unassisted living apartment building in the Liberty Village Complex. By 2012, she had begun to experience fairly serious memory failure due to the beginning of a series of small strokes. Due to the employment of a home care service, she was able to remain in the independent living apartment where she had formed many friendships and was served by a nice staff.
October of 2019 her condition warranted being moved to an assisted living facility, the beautiful Landings east of Carbondale. After a fall April 2020, she was hospitalized and finally contracted the Corna-19 Virus.
There are many, but there are three important traits that June will be remember by: her strong belief in education, her immense humanity, and her devotion to the church.
June’s childhood years were at the time of the Great Depression. Even as the family experienced austere times, June achieved a professional education by the time she was 20 years of age. She began her teaching career in 1942 and taught for 45 years. During that time, she went on to achieve a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from SIU. She stressed the importance of education to everyone that she mentored. After all, it was the ticket for escaping the austerity that she had experienced as a child. No matter what achievement reached by anyone she had been mentoring, she would enthusiastically celebrate their accomplishment.
June was an immense humanist. As well as being a loving, nurturing mother, grandmother and great grandmother she served as a mentor to many extended family members and former students. She had many close friends who she checked in with often, as well as, her children. She wrote many notes of encouragement during her life.
She was a Christian lady who enjoyed the First Christian Church of Carbondale very much over 62 years. She and Glenn attended church consistently and both served on many church boards and committees. Her church life introduced her to many “girl friends” who she held in deep regard.
In the end, we can say that she led a fruitful and fulfilled life. She was fortunate to live in beautiful surroundings and to be served by great health care professionals as well, and friends and family. Her influences and lessons of life will be felt by friends and family for many years to come.
Besides her children, named earlier, she leaves behind her grandchildren: Melissa (Brian) House, Toby (Debbie) Waller, Sarah Staley, Kipp Waller, Wade (Patti)
Waller. She made a significant impact on her great-grandchildren as well: Carolyn House, Abigail Waller, Kathryn House, Margaux House, Kendal Waller, Adelin Waller.
Our family wishes to extend our sincere thanks to the staff that took care of Mother from Liberty Village of Carbondale, The Landings at Reed Station Road, Integrity Health Care of Anna, and Memorial Hospital of Carbondale.
Private family celebration of life services will be held at First Christian Church in Carbondale, with the Rev. Karen Knodt officiating. Burial will follow at Maple Hill Cemetery in Sesser, IL.
Memorials may be made to First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Carbondale.
Meredith Funeral Home in Carbondale assisted the family with arrangements. To leave a story or memory of June, visit www.meredithfh.com