Wasn’t expected to survive past 13

Nancy Jane Wilson of Forest Park died on Sept. 10, 2022 after a short illness. Born on Oct. 24, 1947 to Clifford and Gwynedd Wilson, she overcame many obstacles. She was born premature with cerebral palsy and was not expected to survive past 13 years. Unable to walk until she was 4, she wore leg braces as a child and again later in life, using a walker and then a wheelchair as she lost mobility.

She graduated from Austin High School in Chicago in January 1966. She started her career as an office clerk at John Plain & Co., a mail order catalog company for retail stores and worked for 36 years for R.H. Bacon & Co., a media monitoring company for the PR industry, beginning in their clipping service as a media researcher specializing in newspapers. Later she helped as a special edit clerk as needed. Despite her increased mobility issues, she proudly earned many perfect attendance rewards and remained at Cision, the rebranded company, until October 2012 when the division was sold and shut down. She retired in 2014. 

Proud of her Welsh heritage, she and her mother were active in the local Cambrian society. She also belonged to the BPW (Business and Professional Women) organization, attending conventions and serving in various positions.

A fierce protector of her rights as a disabled person, she was unafraid to speak out when someone gave her grief for moving too slowly. She hated the word “cripple” and helped others push for an elevator installation at her church. She recently registered as an organ donor. Through her Eversight organization donation, a blind person may see.

A longtime member of St. Martin’s Episcopal Church of Austin in Chicago. She remained active even when she could no longer attend services, supporting fundraisers. When COVID-19 forced the congregation to use Zoom, she listened on her flip phone, able to talk to her friends and stay connected. They were her second family where she felt at home. 

Some of her favorite things were: the color purple, anything chocolate but especially Milky Way Midnight bars, Happy Meals, shopping at Ed’s Way grocery and Walmart, Avon, the British royal family (especially Diana), brightly colored clothes, and Long Island Ice Tea. She was really looking forward to going to Walmart to buy herself a 75th birthday present.

Nancy was predeceased by her parents, her younger brother Bruce, and her stepfather John “Bud” Moriarty. She is survived by her stepsister Carol Ann Lopiccalo, and Kathy Dahl, her “sister of the heart” for 61 years, whose children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren considered her Auntie Nancy. Carol, a former coworker for 35 years and daily caregiver for the past three years will miss her greatly. 

Her family, friends, and former co-workers grieve her passing but know she is now free of pain, frustration, and anxiety.

A memorial service will be held at a later date at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church, 5700 W. Midway Park, Chicago.