Mona Michalke Quinn, beloved mother, sister, friend, and teacher, passed away on June 5 after a two-year battle with cancer. She had lived a happy and fulfilling 76 years.
Born in Duluth, MN, to Harry and Katie Michalke and raised in Rice Lake, WI, Mona lived in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, and northern Indiana before putting down roots in Lafayette, a community she called home for the last 32 years. Nothing was more important than family and friends to Mona, who always seemed to be going to or coming from a sisters’ weekend, her prayer group, her theater group, her “wine-swilling bridge club”, dinners with close friends, the symphony, or a visit to San Francisco or Washington, DC, to see her children. Passionate about literature and knowledge, Mona taught high school English for 25 years, including 20 at Lafayette Jefferson, and after retirement, she worked for five more years as an academic advisor at Purdue.
She will be remembered as joyous, even in the most difficult times, kind, generous of spirit, brilliant, and funny—even pulling off some great one-liners in her final days. She was a mentor to countless students and teachers, and a rock on which everyone who knew her could depend. She is survived by two children, four sisters, and a brother.
Funeral services will be held on Monday, June 17, at the St. Thomas Aquinas Center in West Lafayette, IN, at 1:00 PM. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Mona’s name to the Lafayette Jefferson library to ensure, among other things, that they have a sufficient number of copies of The Great Gatsby and To Kill a Mockingbird in stock for future generations of students and teachers. Checks can be mailed to 1801 South 18th Street, Lafayette, IN, 47905.