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Emma Lena Vlasich


Emma Lena (Parola) Vlasich, 102, of Gillespie, passed away at Gillespie Health and Rehab Center, Gillespie, on Sunday, Aug. 13, 2023 at 8:40 a.m.

She was born Sept. 13, 1920, in Taylor Springs, to James and Maddalena (Davito) Parola.

She married Henry Vlasich on Oct. 13, 1940.  He preceded her in death on Nov. 15, 2004.

She was retired after having been a legal secretary and a secretary for SS Simon and Jude Church, Gillespie.

Emma was defined by her church, beauty, and cooking expertise.  She was a devout Catholic and practiced her religion faithfully.  Emma was twice a queen-first for the Hillsboro High School homecoming (1937)-the first Italian girl from Taylor Springs to do so-and second for the annual Canna Anna civic organization festival (1955) held every summer in Gillespie.  Finally, she was recognized by everyone as a gourmet chef.  Eating at Emma’s table was a memorable experience that was shared by all her friends and family.

She is survived by her sons, Henry Daniel (Suzanne) Vlasich of AZ, James (Grace) Vlasich of CO; grandchildren, Daniel Christopher Vlasich of CA, Brooke Vlasich of CA and Ming (Danny) Scheid of CO.

Emma was preceded in death by her parents and spouse.

Visitation will be on Saturday, Sept. 9, 2023 at SS Simon & Jude Church, 304 N Macoupin, Gillespie, IL, 62033, 10 to 11 a.m.  Memorial mass will follow at 11 a.m. at the church. Inurnment will be at Holy Cross Cemetery, Gillespie.  In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to Gillespie Public Library, 201 W Chestnut, Gillespie, IL 62033.

Anyone wishing to send an online condolence may do at

Kravanya Funeral Home, Gillespie, is in charge of the arrangements.