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Helen's Story

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Helen (Dolores) Connelly, 93, of Danville, Ill., passed from this life on Feb. 2, 2018, at OSF Sacred Heart, Danville.
She was born Nov. 10, 1924, in Georgetown, Ill., daughter of William R. and Kathryn (Rowland) Holmes.
She was preceded in death by her husband of 58 years, Leo Connelly.
Her surviving loved ones include her children, Timothy Connelly MD (Roberta) of Piatt County, Ill., Ellen (Emile) Frankino of Pekin, Ill., Kristin (Marco) Solari of Buenos Aires, Argentina; sister, Barbara Jackowski; brother, Charles (Jeanette) Holmes; her grandchildren, whom she loved so much, Christopher (Jennifer), Erin and Patrick; along with several dear nieces and nephews. Dolores was also blessed with loyal and caring friends, especially Chris Phillips and Marilyn Engle, who were considered as family.
Dolores graduated from Georgetown High School and St. Elizabeth School of Nursing. Apart from family, her grandest passion was the nursing profession, that being a vocation, rather than a job. Her career included private practice and nurse management at St. Elizabeth Hospital, where she retired as Director of Hospice. Her attentiveness and compassion with her patients was always noteworthy.
An important milestone in her life was her conversion to the Catholic faith, following her marriage. Through the years, Dolores was a devoted and active servant of the Catholic community of St. Patrick's/Holy Family Parish and Schlarman High School. She and Leo placed a high value on Catholic and higher education for her children, and she dedicated time in such efforts as Girl Scouts, Christian Family Movement, as well as being school nurse for St. Pat's. She gave a lot of energy to helping many families in need.
Dolores loved gathering with and cooking for family and friends. She was known as a sports enthusiast (Little League, Cubs, Illini, Bears) and also as a huge animal lover, rescuing and providing a home to numerous dogs and cats over the years. Her friends and family will always remember her generosity and tenacity.
Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10 a.m. Saturday, February 10, at Holy Family Catholic Church with Fr. Steven Loftus and Fr. Ted Pracz officiating. The family will greet friends 5-7 p.m. Friday, February 9, at Holy Family Catholic Church with a Wake Service at 4:45 p.m. Burial will be at Resurrection Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Dolores' name to Holy Family Church, Schlarman Academy or Resurrection Cemetery. Online condolences: www.rortvedtfuneralservices.
Published on February 5, 2018
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