Anna Marie Pogvara - Aurora, Ill.

Anna Marie Pogvara

Anna Marie Pogvara, 95, of Aurora, Ill., formerly of Chicago, passed away peacefully July 25, 2011, at Jennings Terrace Nursing Home in Aurora.

Anna Marie O'Keefe was born Nov. 24, 1915, in Chicago, to John and Catherine O'Keefe. She graduated from Providence High School and was later employed as a secretary. She married James Nichols Sr., on May 30, 1942. He died in 1975. Years later George Pogvara introduced himself to Anna Marie at a meeting by sketching her and passing it across the room. They married in 1980. Mr. Pogvara passed away in 1982. 

She is survived by three daughters, Kathleen Nolan of Rochester, Mary Eileen Robinson of Montgomery, Ill., and Patricia Kimball of Oak Forest, Ill.; and one son, James (Diane) Nichols of Woodridge, Ill.; four step-children; seven grandchildren, Colleen (Eugene) Caballes, Erin (Jose) Cervantes, Brent Nichols, Bridget Nichols, Matt Chiaramonte, Beth Chiaramonte, Paul (Melissa) Ruthenbeck-Chiaramonte; nine step-grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; four step-great-grandchildren; and many nieces an nephews.

She was preceded in death by her brothers, William, John and James O'Keefe; and sisters, Mary Erin and Eileen O'Keefe and Catherine Schaefer.

She was a lady in every way, kind and gracious to all and made friends everywhere she went. She was known for her quiet acts of kindness. She loved spending time with her family and especially enjoyed playing the piano while her children sang along. She learned to play by ear at age three and could play any song with full accompaniment as long as she knew the tune. In the last month of her life she played for staff at the nursing home by touch and memory and loved knowing others were enjoying her music.


She had a strong faith and found strength and comfort in the Holy Eucharist. She was proud of her Irish heritage, fond of Chicago, an avid bell collector and regular card and Scrabble player. She volunteered in many capacities.

Mass of Christan Burial was at St. Daniel the Prophet Church, with burial at Mount Olivet Cemetery, in Chicago on July 29, 2011.

Memorials are suggested to Jennings Terrace Nursing Home (non-profit), Aurora, or Lexington Hospice in Lombard, Ill. The family wishes to extend heartfelt thanks to the staff at both for the devoted quality-of-life care they showed to Anna Marie each day.

Anna Marie was the last of her O'Keefe generation. A family gathering was held to remember and honor her and all who went before her.

Ridge Funeral Home in Chicago was in charge of arrangements.

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