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Kay McCleish

A funeral Mass for Kay McCleish, 78, formerly of Bancroft, will be held Friday, September 24, 2021, at 10:30 AM at Divine Mercy Parish - St. John’s Catholic Church in Bancroft. Burial will be in St. John’s Catholic Cemetery. Visitation will be from 5 to 7 PM Thursday at Oakcrest Funeral Services of Bancroft. In lieu of flowers, memorials in Kay’s memory may be directed to St. Jude Children’s Hospital.  

Kay was born March 27, 1943 in Bancroft, daughter of Richard and Adria (McGuire) Menke.  She grew up in Bancroft graduating from St. John’s Catholic School in 1961. Kay was married  to Duane McCleish on August 31, 1963 at St. John’s Catholic Church in Bancroft.  

Kay and Duane moved to Des Plaines, IL and a few years later relocated to Streamwood, IL,  where they raised their three children. Kay was a stay at home mom until her children started  school when she then began working at Streamwood Lanes Bowling Alley. She retired from her  position as Manager after working there for over 25 years.  
Kay loved spending time with her family, reading, her yearly girls trips with her sisters, and  watching the Chicago Cubs. Although Kay was never a fan of swimming or being in the water,  if there was a boat going for a ride, she was the first one on it (with a life jacket on of course).  She loved her boat rides. Kay also did not like cold weather so she always looked forward to  spending her winters in Arizona with Duane, family and friends.  
Kay’s sister Jan summed it up perfectly, “Kay lived a simple life, unassuming and undemanding.  All she asked was the love of her family and friends and even that was done quietly. Who else  could have entertained the Chicago tribe in such a small house? Who else loved the simple like  she did?”  

Kay is survived by her three children, Bruce (Janet) McCleish of Fox River Grove, IL, Lanette (Keith) Vesper of Streamwood, IL and Julie (Michael Garcia) Thornton of Elgin, IL; seven grandchildren, Kelley McCleish of Fox River Grove, IL, Michael McCleish of Barrington, IL, Lance (Raeanne) Vesper of Littleton, CO, Andrew Vesper of Denver, CO, Cole Thornton of Elgin, IL, and Mikaela and Samantha Garcia both of Hanover Park, IL; and a great granddaughter, Gabrielle McCleish of Fox River Grove, IL.  She is also survived by three sisters, Marilyn Lensing of Algona, Alice Hansen of Schaumburg, IL and Jan Deitering of Bancroft; five brother-in-laws, David (Ladonna) McCleish of Brighton, CO, Dick (Jan) McCleish of Liberty MO, Darrell (Sue) McCleish of Waukee, Darwin (Angie) McCleish of West DesMoines and Dale (Joan) McCleish of Urbandale; and many nieces, nephews and other relatives.
Preceded in death by her husband, Duane, parents; an infant sister, her brother and sister in law, Dennis and  Meredith McCleish, a niece Becky Reilly, and brother in laws Tom “Doc” Lensing and Dick Deitering.

Oakcrest Funeral Services of Bancroft in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be made to

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