Nancy J. Howe

FARMER CITY — Nancy J. (Reynolds) Howe, 65, of Farmer City, passed away at her home, surrounded by her family on Monday, October 23, 2023.

Services will be conducted at 10 a.m. on Saturday, November 4, 2023, at Calvert Funeral Home, Clinton, with OSF Chaplain Joyce Rinkenberger officiating. Burial will follow at Mansfield Cemetery, Mansfield, Ill. Visitation will be held from  –7 p.m. on Friday, November 3, 2023 at the funeral home.

Memorials may be directed to March of Dimes or the Intouch Ministries.

Nancy was born on December 11, 1957, in Normal, to Donald and Patricia J. Reynolds.  She was the older sister to her siblings Marty and Jim.

She graduated as valedictorian of DeLand-Weldon High School in 1976 and went on to study nursing at Illinois Wesleyan University, graduating in 1980.  Throughout her life, Nancy worked for many years as a caring nurse.

Nancy married Joe Howe on November 28, 1981, in Weldon.  Together with her devoted husband, Nancy built a life she was proud of and honored God in the way she lived.  She raised four daughters who loved her and cared for her. The pride of Nancy’s life were her children, the Howe girls.  Her girls all grew up to be strong women who love their family like Nancy did.

Nancy was a strong believer who faced her challenges in life with grace, courage and determination.  In 1985, she had a young daughter at home and was pregnant with her second, while she bravely fought brain cancer.  Nancy and Joe went on to have two more daughters and many blessed years together.  The couple celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary in 2021.

Nancy especially enjoyed her summers with her family.  Every August, she and Joe loaded up the Suburban for a road trip and made fond memories.  The Colorado mountains had a special place in her heart, and she traveled there many times after going there for her honeymoon.

She loved living on a farm in the country.  She had a passion for vegetable gardening, canning, and flowers.  Her flower bed was a particular point of pride and included her favorites like petunias and chrysanthemums.  She lovingly tended strawberries, apples, peaches, lilacs and peonies. 

She was a skilled cook known for her sticky buns, orange jello, yum yum coffee cake, and pasta shells, among many others.  Nancy’s homemade applesauce and strawberry jam were big hits in the Howe house.

Nancy was a talented piano player and played for several years at Prairie Chapel United Methodist Church.  She enjoyed listening to Christian music especially Michael W. Smith and Amy Grant.

Nancy appreciated her three sons-in-law and everything they did for her.   Whether they were providing home maintenance or delicious foods, she sure thought a lot of them.

If her four girls were the pride of her life, her four grandsons were her prize.  They made her smile every time she saw them, whether that was playing on the swing set at her house, or going to their activities which ranged from drag racing to trombone to baseball. 

Those boys could do no wrong in their Gram’s eyes.  Nancy adored her husband and family and they will miss her every day.

She was preceded in death by her beloved mother, Patricia J. Reynolds, mother-in-law, Dona Howe, and father-in-law J. Maurice “Maurie” Howe.

Survivors include Nancy’s husband Joe, her children Addie Howe, Elise (Austin) Perry, Lindsey (Jason) Pritchett, and Sarah (Tyler) Roth; grandchildren Dylan and Tanner Pritchett, Brady and Logan Roth; father Don Reynolds; sister Marty (Frank Sugent) Forrest, and brother James (Tim Acito) Reynolds.

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