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Karen Blank

Karen Blank

Karen Sue, nee Hessman, Blank, 72, of Freeburg, IL; formerly of Marissa, IL; died on Thursday, August 17 2017.

She was born seven minutes after her twin, Kim, in St. Louis, MO on March 5, 1945 to Arthur and Esther, nee Tiley, Hessman, who proceeded her in death.

She attended school in Sparta, IL graduating with the class of ’63. She met John (deceased August 2011) and they married in 1965 beginning their sweet union in Marissa, raising 2 children, Andrew (Valerie) residing in Lenzburg and Jennifer (Kevin) Triefenbach residing in Freeburg.

Karen and John, along with their son, Andrew developed a lasting relationship with the people of New Athens by owning and operating New Athens Auto Parts for thirty-five years. Her creative “Farmer Filter Day” annually provided lunch for those attending the sales. She was the heart of sales and service but her true calling was that of wife, mother and grandmother. She was an artist in paint and fabric and thankfully those treasures will continue to be loved and enjoyed by her family. Her grandchildren became central to her life and Lexie (Michael Deutsh – fiancĂ©), Adam, and Abby Blank and Spencer Triefenbach are blessed to have had her love and devotion. Her quick wit, not to be outdone by John, was just part of her enduring personality which allowed her to be known as “company worth keeping”. Her extended family of sisters-in-law Paula Tanner, and Marilyn Blank; brother-in-law John Massaro; nieces Terry Lewark, Summer Roy; nephews Michael Blank, Terry Blank, John-Paul Massaro and Aries Massaro have reaped the special treasured memories created by her. All who have the good fortune to know her have loved her dearly. The family will be forever grateful for the life shared and love she gave in return. The love and support she received in the last year from family and friends, near and far, will always be treasured and appreciated.

Condolences to the family may be expressed online at

In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to PTOEC – Special Olympics; 620 North Illinois Street, Belleville, IL 62220

Visitation: Friends may call at Heil-Schuessler Funeral Home in Marissa, IL on Tuesday, August 22, 2017 from 4:00pm to 8:00pm.

Funeral: A private graveside service will be held in the Marissa Township Cemetery in Marissa, IL.

Heil-Schuessler Funeral Home in Marissa, IL is in charge of arrangements.

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  1. Administrator says:

    Our family would like for you (Jennifer & Andrew) and your families to know how much we loved your mother, and how much we will miss her. We shared many good times with her, your Dad, Aunt Marilyn and Uncle Ray, but it was your mom who made us laugh. Her come-backs were priceless! She was also a very sincere friend, always a good listener and very interested in whatever we shared. She sure loved her 4 grandkids.

    Posted by: Jeanne Cuddy – St Lucie West, FL – Friend Aug 18, 2017

  2. Administrator says:

    Jennifer, Kevin, and Spencer, I am so sorry for your loss. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.

    Posted by: Marcia (Scott) Morgan – Swansea, IL – Family Friend Aug 18, 2017

  3. Administrator says:

    I am so sorry for your family’s loss. Praying for your family!

    Posted by: Tina Sinn – Chester, IL – Friend Aug 18, 2017

  4. Administrator says:

    I knew Karen when we were in sorority together and I will always think of her with affection. Please accept my sincere condolences.

    Posted by: Jean Macke – Marissa, IL Aug 19, 2017

  5. Administrator says:

    Our sympathy to all of Karen’s family. May your memories of this special lady bring you comfort.

    Posted by: Don and Dorothy Bollmeier – Marissa, IL Aug 19, 2017

  6. Administrator says:

    So very sorry. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all. May thewonderful memories Karen left be a great consolation.

    Posted by: Maurern Senecal – Wells, ME – Acquaintance Aug 19, 2017

  7. Administrator says:

    Dearest Kim & family-you have all fought the tough battle. Please extend my thoughts & prayers to all. I will be thinking of you Kim in the days ahead. Loosing a sibling is hard. I know. Mary Moore

    Posted by: Mary Moore – Burke, NY – Friend Aug 19, 2017

  8. Administrator says:

    Our Sympathy to the family. I am a 1963 classmate,. I’m sure she will be greatly missed by family and friends. Jerry and Kathryn Mines

    Posted by: Jerry Mines – Carlyle, IL – Classmate Aug 22, 2017

  9. Administrator says:

    Thank you to the family of Karen Blank for remembering PTOEC at this sad time. Tri-State Seed Company and Debra Routhier have made memorial contributions in honor of Karen.

    Posted by: PTOEC Ron Hindman, Treasurer – Belleville, IL – Friend Aug 31, 2017

  10. Administrator says:

    To the Blank Family, we in PTOEC are sorry for your loss. Thank you for choosing donations to our organization as memorials to Karen. A donation was made In honor of Spencer Triefenbach by Amie Cuddy Demarco.. A donation in memory of Karen also was made by Deb and Mike Valley.

    Posted by: Ron Hindman, Treasurer PTOEC – Belleville, IL Sep 09, 2017

  11. Administrator says:

    PTOEC again offers its most sincere condolences and thanks to the family of Karen for honoring us by requesting donations in her name. In addition to earlier named donors, we have received donations directly from Lisa Buynick, Linda Peterson, Dennis Bickett, The Tuesday Clubhouse Friends and Exercise Club, and Judy Lauf. We also have received many, many donations which were given to Karen’s family. We will remember Karen in our prayers.

    Posted by: PTOEC Ron Hindman, Treasurer – Belleville, IL – Friend Oct 02, 2017

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