Mary Ann Cronin passed away on February 18th, 2021 aged 83. Born from humble beginnings in Chicago on February 16th, 1938. She was raised by her extended family after her parents’ untimely passing early on in her life. Her early years, grounded in hard work, faith and family, set the stage for the kind of legacy she left behind: one in which her Irish-Catholic roots guided her to become a woman who made such a profound impact on so many.
At age 20 she met the man who would become the love of her life. She was taken by Bob’s charm and quickly fell deeply for him. Mary Ann and Bob adored each other, up until the last moments of Bob’s life. They had an unparalleled love story, one that exemplified the kind of beauty and good that can come from two people’s commitment to and adoration for one another.
Mary Ann led an extraordinary life of service, love, and faith. Every Sunday, you would find her in the church pews of Immaculate Conception, joyfully singing hymns of praise alongside her family. Her natural instinct was to give, putting the needs of others before her own whenever possible. Mary Ann led by example. She faithfully administered God’s grace by serving others, spending her time feeding the hungry at the food pantry and volunteering as a Eucharistic minister at Elmhurst Hospital. She instilled that same resolute faith in her family, friends, and greater Elmhurst community.
A word wiz, you could often find scribbled crossword booklets scattered around Mary Ann’s living room. She was known for her sharp wit and keen intellect, reading WWII history novels over and over again. Her love for travel brought her to many of those same battlegrounds she read about, where she could spew out more facts than the historical landmarks’ signage revealed. Mary Ann’s adventurous spirit took her all over the world, up until the end of her life. Her last trip, a riverboat cruise down the Rhine River, was taken at age 81 with her granddaughter, Molly.
Family was everything to Mary Ann. She cherished each moment spent with her husband, her 6 children, 30 grandchildren, and 6 great-grandchildren. During the summers, Mary Ann’s family congregated at the family lakehouse on Lake Geneva. Those summers out on the lake were spent filled with love and laughter, sharing stories over big communal family dinners.
As the matriarch of the Cronin clan, Mary Ann modeled what kind of legacy a life of dedicated service, love, and faith can leave.
Mary Ann Cronin, nee Hoffman, age 83, member of Immaculate Conception Parish, Elmhurst for 54 years; beloved wife of the late Robert J. Cronin Sr.; loving mother of Bob (Beverly), Regina (Joe) Hughes, Carolin (Kerry) Mannion, Becky (Scott) Sutton, Christine (Tom) Falkenberg and Jennifer (Bob) Geiger; proud grandmother of Kaitlin (Nick) Steele, Maggie (Charlie) Hilding, Molly and Will Cronin, Melanie (Kevin) Downey, Joe (Lizzy) Hughes, Holly (Johnny) Pipp, Eva (Jackson) Jelinek, Robert, Regina Marie, Mary Clare and Hope Hughes; Jack, Natalie, Stephanie, Maggie, Luke and Nicholas Mannion; Megan, Sean and Matthew Sutton, Tommy, Danny, Patrick, Kevin and Ryan Falkenberg and Jackson, Allie, Kate and Charlie Geiger and great-grandmother of Darryl, Christian, Michael, Lawrence, Conor and Ginny; dear sister of the late Francis Hoffman and Denise Fitzgerald. Visitation Tuesday from 2:00 p.m. until 3:00 p.m. for Seniors and those most at risk and continuing until 8:00 p.m. at Gibbons Funeral Home, 134 South York Road, (½ mile North of Saint Charles Road), Elmhurst. Friends and family are asked to meet Wednesday, 9:15 a.m. for a Mass of Christian Burial beginning at 9:30 a.m. at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, 134 Arthur Street, Elmhurst. Interment Queen of Heaven Catholic Cemetery, Hillside. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Capt. William D. Cronin, Jr Scholarship Fund, c/o Immaculate Conception Schools, 134 Arthur Street, Elmhurst, IL 60126. Due to COVID-19 guidelines, please note that the family thanks all attendees in advance for their show of support, however facility capacity is limited and we request all attendees maintain social distancing, wear a mask and be respectful of the time so all have a chance to express their condolences. Livestream of funeral Mass and information regarding reserving your space in person available through the funeral home website. For funeral information please call 630-832-0018 or www.gibbonsfuneralhome.com
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