Chesterton Tribune

Mary Jo Norgaard dies at 94

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Mary Jo Norgaard, 94, of Chesterton, died Saturday, January 10, 2009, at the home of her son, James Norgaard, after a long illness. 

Mary Jo was born in Ponca City, Oklahoma on October 24, 1914, the daughter of Thomas Joseph Silvy and Mary Johana (Dierker) Silvy. 

On March 23, 1943, Mary Jo Silvy and Air Force Capt. Jens Norgaard were married in St. Mary’s Church, Iowa City, Iowa.

Mary Jo is survived by her children: Anders (Geraldine) of Belle Plaine, Iowa, James (Charla) of Chesterton, Mary Norgaard of Burlington, Wis., Ann Michaels (Fred) of Wilmington, Del., and K. Jenise Filiatrault (John) of Hartselle, Ala.; sisters, Edna Dick of Stockton, Calif. and Pat Lang (Don) of St. Mary’s, Ga.; 21 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Jens; two sisters, Helen Griffin and Catherine Forenti; and brother, Thomas Silvy.

Mary Jo’s parents moved their family to numerous towns in the states of Okla., Colo., Idaho and Calif. where Mary Jo graduated from Stockton High School in 1933.  She then graduated from cosmetology school and worked as a cosmetologist. Married in 1943,  Mary Jo remained in Iowa City until 1945 while her husband fought in World War II.

After the war Mary Jo and Jens raised their five children while following Jens’ career at Standard Oil of Indiana refineries in Whiting, Ind., Casper, Wyo., Sugar Creek, Mo., Texas City, Texas, Wood River, Ill., and finally back to Whiting. They retired to Fla. in 1981 and lived in Mulberry and Haines City. After Jens’ death in 1989, Mary Jo continued to live in Haines City  until the three-hurricane season of 2004 when she moved to Hartselle, Ala. to be with her daughter, Jenise. In 2008 she moved to Chesterton to be with her son, James.  She was dearly loved and will be deeply missed by her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. 

Funeral services, Rev. James Meade officiating, will be at 10 a.m., Saturday, Jan. 17, at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Chesterton.  Interment will be held at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 18, at St. Joseph’s Cemetery, Iowa City, Iowa, with graveside services in the Chapel by Deacon Joe Behounek.  

Visitation will be from 4-7 p.m. Friday, January 16, at Edmonds & Evans Funeral Home, 517 Broadway, Chesterton, with the Rosary at 7 p.m.

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Posted 1/14/2009