Gladys Irene (Miller) Hanses

April 8, 1924 ~ April 14, 2020 (age 96)


“On April 14, 2020, Gladys Irene Hanses passed away peacefully in her sleep. She was 96 years old.  Gladys was born in Lowell, Michigan to William George Miller and Mary Elizabeth (Moon) Miller on April 8, 1924. Gladys grew up on the family farm in Michigan which provided great memories for her as well as for her ten siblings. She attended Michigan State, where she met the love of her life, Edward Hanses. Gladys was well-loved and was the mother of nine children, and many grand and great grandchildren.

Gladys was predeceased by her husband Edward Hanses, her daughter Ann, and eight of her siblings and their spouses: Hazel Miller, Della (Lawrence) Addington, Florence (Louis) Pung, William (Evelyn) Miller, Marion (Newman) Shaw, Harold (Lucy) Miller, Teresa (Richard) Simon, Walter (Frances) Miller, her brother-in-law’s Charles Edwards and Alfred Nye and her two daughter-in-law’s, Robin Hanses and Jill Hanses.

She is survived by her sisters Catherine (Miller) Nye and Esther (Miller) Edwards, her eight surviving children including: Mark, Patrick (Judy), Daniel, Mary (Keith), Andrew (Darlene), John, Susie (Joe) and all her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Despite her large family Gladys always made time for everyone. She always provided support and love for her family and she was very involved in their lives including head of PTO, Cub Scouts Den Mother, Girl Scout Leader, and Lady’s Guild President. She also served the community as a Eucharistic Minister and she oversaw the floral committee for her local church, St. Peters.

Gladys had many roles during her life – a daughter, sister, devoted wife, caring mother, sister-in-law, aunt, grandmother and great grandmother. She had spirit and spunk. She once danced the jig down the hard aisle at her sister’s funeral. She wanted to take care of you, but also knew when to discipline as well. The bar of soap to clean up a swear word was always close at hand. We also knew we crossed a line when we got the finger shake from her. It usually set us straight. But her best approach was always loving understanding, empathy and consideration. She had it in spades and if she didn’t, she was never afraid to bid for it!

Some of her favorite past times were her bowling league, pinochle, making puzzles, eating Pixies or Fango Mints, and playing cribbage with Edward and of course, going to church.  She enjoyed the annual family camping trips, reunions and her travels took her throughout the United States, Ireland and to the Holy Land.

She appreciated nice things and always had a natural flair for taste and elegance. She would always comment, look at, or touch an item of clothing you’d happen to be wearing if she really loved it. Her husband, Edward knew she loved beautiful things as well and every year for her birthday or anniversary, he would always buy her some unique piece of jewelry from Discovery in Geneva.  She loved flowers and gardening. She often would make homemade rhubarb pie from the fresh rhubarb in her garden. Edward planted the trees and gave structure to the yard, but it was Gladys who painted it with the color from her flowers. They were a beautiful compliment to one another.  She was a Michigander thru and thru. As a young girl Gladys loved to play ice hockey on the mill pond, go frogging and swimming with her sisters. She enjoyed her dog Pal and driving the hay wagon with the team of King and Queen pulling the load. She had a free spirit, enough to get on a bike and ride the 41 miles from Saginaw to the farm for a weekend visit during her high school years.  She had a love of Irish poetry especially Frost and Burns. She would often quote the poem of Hiawatha and the Midnight Ride of Paul Revere. We can still hear her saying now “Listen my children and you shall hear the midnight ride of Paul Revere.”

She will be remembered for her bright eyes, sweet voice, sense of humor and gentle laughter. There are many more wonderful; stories to share, of a life well lived and lessons learned from her, which will be shared and cherished for many generations to come.

Funeral service date and time to be determined.

In lieu of flowers, donations made be sent to the Geneva Community Chest, PO Box 441, Geneva, Illinois 60134.


Arrangements handled by Malone Funeral Home in Geneva.  For information 630-232-8233 or visit


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