Gretchen Klemm, 64, of Rockton, IL passed away on Friday, April 27, 2018 in her home in Rockton IL. Gretchen was born March 4, 1954 in Washington, DC to the late Preston and Ursula Peden and was raised in La Grange, IL. She received her BA followed by an MA in Fine Art from the University of Iowa in Iowa City, where she lived, worked, and raised her family. Since 2005, she lived in Rockton, IL with her loving husband, Tom Cieslak. Throughout her life she was a dedicated teacher and mentor working in public education, at Kirkwood Community College in Iowa City and most recently for the Winnebago County Special Education Cooperative, and had recently retired. In her retirement, she focused her attention back on her art practice, taking classes in painting and drawing, something that brought her great joy throughout her life.
She was a selfless, loving mother and wife, and will be remembered for her extraordinary kindness and sense of wit. She is survived by her husband, Tom; her son, Stephen and his wife Gina; her daughter, Hannah; and her step-son, Matt his wife, Sarah, and their two children, Frances and Oliver.
A celebration of Gretchen’s life will be held in Honquest Family Funeral Home, 11342 Main Street, Roscoe IL, 61073, with a memorial service to be held at 2:00 pm on Saturday, May 5, preceded by a visitation that will begin at 1:00 pm. Memories of Gretchen and condolences may be shared online at: honquestfh.com