Mary Rose Christesen Buster, 86, of Pontiac, Illinois passed away Saturday, November 12, 2022 at 8:24 p.m. at Ascension Saint Francis Hospital in Evanston.
A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated Saturday, November 19, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. in St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Pontiac.
A visitation was held in the church one hour preceding the Mass, and the rosary was recited at 9:30 a.m.
Burial followed in Mt. Olivet Catholic Cemetery in Dwight.
Memorials may be made to the Michael J. Fox Parkinson’s Foundation and the Multiple Myeloma Foundation.
Mary was born November 24, 1935 to Edward Andrew and Emma Rose (Meyer) Christesen. She married Alfred T. Buster on June 26, 1965 in Dwight, Illinois. He preceded her in death on July 1, 2000.
Survivors include their children: Sheila K. Buster of Pontiac, Illinois; Michael T. (Kelly Ann) Buster of Edgewater, Florida; and Patrick E. Buster of Pontiac, Illinois; and her little dog, Annie.
She is also survived by grandchildren: Joseph M. Buster, Timothy A. Buster, Nicholas J. Buster and Anthony D. Buster, all of Edgewater, Florida; her sister, Theresa A. Gschwendtner of Pontiac; niece and goddaughter, Susan M. (Ray Watson) Gschwendtner of Washington, DC; niece, Elizabeth (Mike O’Connell) Eischeid of Batavia, Illinois; and several other nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband; and her sister, Rita J. Christesen; brothers-in-law, John F. Gschwendtner, Kenneth Miller, and Claude Foster; and sisters-in-law, Caroline Page and Sharon Buster.
Mary graduated from Dwight High School and took additional course work at Lincoln College. She was the Drum Majorette and twirled a baton for her high school marching band, and she played clarinet with the band. She loved to play the organ, and while her children were young, she taught organ lessons in her home in Dwight. Her children remember fondly hearing her play “Lady of Spain.”
She then went to work at multiple different jobs that included The Daily Leader, G.C. Murphy’s in Pontiac, Joliet Prison, Pontiac Correctional Center (where she and Alfred were introduced by mutual friends and fell in love), and State Farm Insurance, in the claims department at the corporate headquarters, Bloomington.
She was a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, was formerly a member of St. Patrick Catholic Church in Dwight, where she sang in the choir and was a member of Catholic Daughters.
Mary loved long road trips, and she and her husband took their children many times to visit her husband’s family, including trips to Southern Illinois, California, Texas and Colorado. In later years, she and her husband sometimes with one or more of the children, took road trips to Maine, Massachusetts, Florida, Ohio, upstate New York, and Washington, DC.
She also traveled to Lexington, Kentucky in the late 1990s to play croquet, a sport that she excelled in, with players who she met online.
Although she had been afraid to fly her entire life, she flew for the first time when she was in her 70s, flew a few times thereafter, and enjoyed it.
She learned to use the internet and to text well into her 70s and spent many pleasant hours exploring the internet and meeting new friends and researching genealogy online.
She will be missed by all who knew and loved her.
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