Mary Eileen Reid Swanson, passed away peacefully at the age of 89, beloved wife of the late Jack Gray Swanson and Paul O’Flaherty; loving mother of Donna Lee (Kerry) Krueger and Pete Reid (Susan) Swanson; cherished grandmother of Jessica (Jonathon) Weber, Justin Michael (Tricia) Krueger and Savanna, Annika and Cambria Swanson and great-grandmother of Luke and Landon Weber and Claire and Michael Krueger; dear sister of Cathy Reid Kobe and the late Tom and Dan Reid, Carol McCourt and Margaret Stevens; devoted daughter of the late Bertha M., nee Krueger and the late Daniel J. Reid; fond aunt, Godmother and friend to many. Mary Eileen has a smile and a gentle way about her that lit up a room and captured your attention. She will be missed by all who knew her. Mary Eileen was a graduate of Mercy High School and went on to receive her two year secretarial degree from DePaul University. Upon graduation, she joined People’s Gas, working in Chicago and had in her words, an incredibly rewarding and fulfilling career working with wonderful, talented people while enjoying the hustle and bustle of her beloved downtown Chicago. In 1956 Mary Eileen married Jack Gray Swanson from River Forest and the two would start their family in Elmhurst. Mary Eileen was the niece of fellow noted Chicagoan, John E. Reid, founder of the interrogation techniques used with the polygraph and for gaining criminal confessions, known as the Reid Technique of Interviewing and Interrogation. “Mitzy”, or “Mrs. Mouse” as Mary Eileen was known, would join her uncle at John E. Reid & Associates in the late 60’s. In the early 70’s, the business was expanded with the idea of taking questions from the interrogation technique and putting them into a paper and pencil report that could be used for screening job applicants to determine their integrity and likelihood of being a good employee. This idea launched an industry and the most widely used integrity employment assessment in the world, The Reid Report. In 1979, with the success of the Reid Report and the advent of changing federal law and the legality of using the polygraph for employee hiring, John E. Reid & Associates created a newly formed company that Mary Eileen and her brother Dan would head up called Reid Psychological Systems. Mary Eileen and Dan ran the company until the late 80’s, when they turned over daily management responsibilities and she assumed the role of Vice Chairman and Dan assumed the role of Chairman. In 2001, three decades after starting a new industry and catapulting Reid Psychological Systems and the Reid Report into the industry leader, the company was sold to international publishing and educational firm Pearson. Mary Eileen was a devoted Christian and member of Immaculate Conception Church in Elmhurst. There she served as Minister of care to the hospitalized and homebound, member of the Christian service commission, mentor to homeless families through the I.C. daybreak of Elmhurst transitional housing, Eucharistic minister at Mass and hospitality volunteer. In the early 90’s, she used her gifts of love, compassion and grace in becoming a bereavement minister and for the next decade would help countless numbers of families during their time of loss of a loved one. In 2005, Mary Eileen’s talent and love for the church were recognized with the coveted award of Catholic Woman of the Year, an honor she wore with pride. Mary Eileen moved to Villa St. Benedict in Lisle in 2005. She would not only find comfort in assisted living, but she would find a new love interest and married Paul O‘Flaherty in January 2007. The two would be married until Paul passed away in 2010. Mary Eileen moved to Tabor Hills in Naperville in January of 2011. Tabor Hills was a home of love and comfort for Mary Eileen as they treated her like family. Even in her final years, her ability to make anyone feel like they were the most important person in the world still showed through in every interaction she had with people. The imprint Mary Eileen left on the people of this world is indelible. She was an angel on earth and her spirit will be missed, but we now know we all have our own guardian angel. Funeral services and Interment are Private at this time. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to her favorite charity, Mercy Home for Boys and Girls of Chicago, 1140 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, IL 60607. Arrangements handled by Gibbons Funeral Home, Elmhurst. 630-832-0018.
Mary Eileen Reid Swanson
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to her favorite charity,
Mercy Home for Boys and Girls of Chicago, 1140 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, IL 60607.