Patricia J. Cheffer, 88

    Patricia J. Cheffer, nee Paris, age 88, of Elmhurst, beloved wife of the late Robert Gene; loving mother of Christian (Bonnie) and Paris Cheffer; cherished grandmother of Kimberly (John) Bretl, Ashley (Ian) Kalis, Blake and Montague Cheffer and great-grandmother of Andrew Bretl; dear sister of Michael (Marianne) Paris and aunt of Shawn and Bryan (Amy) Paris. Patricia is preceded in death by her parents Olivia Paris (nee Braun) and Vernon Paris.

    Pat was born and raised in Kankakee, Illinois. She held a Bachelor’s degree in Theatre with a minor in Speech Pathology from Eastern Illinois University and a Master’s degree in Adult and Continuing Education.

    Pat was very active in the Elmhurst community. She served on the Boards of numerous organizations including the Elmhurst Symphony, Elmhurst Economic and Development Commission, Elmhurst Historical Society, and Elmhurst Memorial Hospital. She was a charter member of the Elmhurst Art Museum and was an active member of AAUW, Elmhurst Art League, and was named an Illinois Artisan in 2000. As past President of Elmhurst Children’s Theatre, Pat enjoyed writing, producing, and directing plays. One of her many passions was to teach and develop young people.

    Pat was also well known as the host and producer of Continental Cablevision’s talk show, “Lifestyle with Pat Cheffer”. The Emmy award winning live show aired for 13 seasons (1985-1998) until Pat retired. The show received the ACE (Award for Cable Excellence) Award honoring the best local talk show across the nation, as well as 3 Women in Cable Awards.

    For her contributions to the community and bringing important topics to the forefront, Illinois Governor Jim Edgar declared July 14, 1993 Pat Cheffer Day and in 1998 Pat was awarded the key to the City of Elmhurst by Mayor Marcucci. Pat was named a “First Lady of Elmhurst”, documented in the book, “The First Ladies of Elmhurst: Prominent Women of the 20th Century”, and named one of ten “Modern Day Pioneer Women” by Elmhurst Chamber of Commerce.

    Pat was an avid artist with a love of painting, travel, adventure, and spending time with her family and friends. She will be remembered for her creativity, positivity, and compassion for others. Known for her “Joie de Vivre” (“joy of living”) and zest for life, Pat leaves behind a legacy of love, laugher, and light. She will be greatly missed by all who knew her.

    Visitation was held Monday, February 12, 2024 at St. Peters United Church of Christ, 125 West Church Street, Elmhurst with private family interment in Kankakee Memorial Gardens, Kankakee, IL.

    In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Elmhurst Children’s Theatre, please designate in honor of Patricia Cheffer, c/o Treasurer, PO Box 64, Elmhurst, IL 60126.