Janet Ruth (Coats) McCann Leaf, 77, of Galesburg and formerly of Abingdon, passed away at 6:17 p.m. Tuesday, January 11, 2022 at OSF Holy Family Medical Center in Monmouth. The following is a tribute to her written by her son, Scott McCann.
“Mom lost her battle with cancer today. She fought hard but cancer rarely loses and death is undefeated.
Mom was a strong-willed person who overcame many challenges in life. Abandoned by her father at a young age, Mom, her siblings and her mother made do with what they had. A divorced mother of two at the age of 21, Mom later married our dad Jerry, and together they instilled in us strong family values that live within us today. Despite neither of them having high school diplomas, they supported me and Peggy through college, and we became among the first in our families to earn bachelor's degrees. Peggy went on further to earn her Master’s and Ph.D., and today is a college professor. Peggy has been and incredible daughter and caregiver, especially over the last year, making personal and professional sacrifices to care for Mom and her beloved dogs, Meeko and Jack. Many friends have also helped in times of need; so much so that we consider them important members of our extended family.
We feel very fortunate that our entire family and many friends were her able to visit and say goodbye to Mom before she passed. Mom was extremely proud of her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She was “feisty”, but she also had a heart of gold and cared deeply for her family and friends. She had a great wit and many funny sayings that I still say to my kids today, which earn me many chuckles and some eye rolls. We all take comfort in knowing that Mom’s pain has ended and that she has moved on to a better place, where we will all be united again someday. In the meantime, her light (and some feistiness, too!) lives on through all of us – Peggy, Scott, Kenna, Katie, Brian, Sean, Kevin, Kenzie, Liam, Sean, Raina, and Alyssa.
Goodbye, Mom. We love you forever.”
As she requested, cremation was accorded. Hinchliff-Pearson-West Funeral Directors and Cremation Services Abingdon Chapel is assisting the family with her arrangements. Online condolences may be made at www.h-p-w.com.
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