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Tillie Mary Varilek


Tillie Mary Varilek was born on Sunday, December 2, 1917 in Bon Homme County near Tyndall, South Dakota to Vaclav and Anastasia (Blaha) Plavec. She attended the Steckley School through the 8th grade. Tillie was united in marriage to Frank H. Varilek on June 21, 1938 at Tabor, South Dakota. They farmed until 1964 when they moved to Tyndall. Tillie worked at the Tyndall Good Samaritan Center for one year as a cook, then worked at various jobs at St. Michael’s Hospital for 81⁄2 years. She worked in the cafeteria at the Tyndall School for nine years and also part-time at the Tyndall Bakery.

She was a member of St. Leo Catholic Church and the St. Leo Altar Society, the National Catholic Society of Foresters, the Czech Heritage Society and the Tyndall Senior Citizens. Tillie was devoted to her faith and participated in the St. John Bosco Study Group and the de Colores Cursillo group. She was also a member of the T.O.P.S. Club (later named “Yes, Yes I Can”), St. Michael’s Hospital Auxiliary, the Good Samaritan Guild, and served on the Site Council for the local senior nutrition program.

In her retirement, she was an active senior citizen and loved to take trips and visit family. She had been recognized during Older Americans Month as an “Outstanding Senior Achiever” by the South Dakota Department of Adult Services and Aging.

Tillie passed away on Saturday, March 10, 2012 at St. Michael’s Hospital Avera at the age of 94 years, 3 months and 8 days. She will live on in the hearts of her six sons and two daughters: Francis Varilek and Sallly Boyd of Mission Hill, Daniel Varilek of Tyndall, JoAnn (John) Jonas of Yankton, Irene Koranda of Tabor, Thomas (Dina) Varilek of Ankeny, Iowa, David Varilek of Tabor, Charles (Julie) Varilek of Estes Park, Colorado, and Kenneth (Jeanne) Varilek of Springfield; twenty grandchildren and five step-grandchildren; 27 great-grandchildren and 13 step-great- grandchildren; and three great-great- grandchildren. She is also survived by numerous nieces, nephews and friends.

In addition to her parents, Vaclav and Anastasia Plavec, Tillie was preceded in death by her husband, Frank, in August of 1985; a daughter, Henrietta, in 1942; a son-in-law, Donald Koranda, in 2008; a brother and sister-in-law, Frank (Anna) Plavec; and three sisters and brothers-in- law: Helen Bower, Lillian (Joseph) Varilek, and Rose (Henry) Teply.

A Rosary and Wake Service will be held on Friday, March 16, 2012 at St. Leo Catholic Church Tyndall, South Dakota. A Mass of Christian Burial will take place on Saturday, March 17, 2012 at St. Leo Catholic Church Tyndall, South Dakota. Celebrant will be Fr. Joseph Forcelle.

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