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May 31, 2020

5/4/2020 12:34:00 PM
Rebecca, Valli

Valli Rebecca Montgomery Tolleson, 74, of Gurnee, Illinois, passed away peacefully in her home on Tuesday, April 28, 2020. She was born on July 25, 1945 at Victory Memorial Hospital in Waukegan, Illinois, the daughter of Gladys Marian Humbert Montgomery of Waldwick, Wisconsin and John (Jack) Robert Montgomery of Waukegan, Illinois.
Valli attended Whittier Elementary School where she met Mary Robertson Del Conte in the second grade and they became lifelong, dearest friends. She then attended Daniel Webster Secondary School followed by Waukegan High School graduating in 1963. During her time in high school, she was a car hop at The Feast House on Grand Avenue in Waukegan. She had a darling, red uniform and worked with one of her closest, high school friends, Trish Lauraitis.
After graduation, she worked as a teller at the First National Bank in Waukegan. She then began a long and successful career at Abbott Laboratories. She met and made some of her closest friends while working at Abbott, to include Sharon Sikich, Karen Estes, Pat Ondo and many others. She retired from Abbott after 25 years of service. In her retirement, she enjoyed gardening, traveling and spending time with friends.
Valli met John Carroll Tolleson in Waukegan, Illinois. They were married on October 19, 1968 at the Post Chapel, U.S. Naval Training Center, Great Lakes, Illinois. In 2018, they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary.
Valli had a great sense of humor. She was a wonderful hostess and had some of the best gatherings during holidays for family and friends. Her Fourth of July parties were some of the finest. With a volleyball net set-up for people to play, food and drinks and everyone coming to laugh and spend time together. Those gatherings were memorable for all.
Valli had a love for embroidery work. She learned at a young age from her grandmother, Willa James Humbert of Waldwick, Wisconsin and her mother, Gladys. She was extremely gifted and skilled in the craft and produced some of the most beautiful samplers. It was a love she shared with her dear friend Tina Flynt. She has a sampler framed in her home with Tina's name on it that reads: "When this you see, think of me, tho' many a mile, we distant be."
She also had a love for traveling and made many trips to Cornwall, England, Scotland and Wales. She loved visiting and touring the lands of her ancestors. She loved to say she was Cornish, with her ancestors hailing from Cornwall, England. She also enjoyed visiting the farm in Waldwick, Wisconsin, where her mother was raised. Some of her fondest memories are from the time she spent there as a child. As an adult, she and her husband, John, would travel to Mineral Point, Wisconsin, outside of Waldwick, yearly to attend the Cornish festival. She loved being there in their lovely, quaint town. Her most recent trip to Mineral Point was to honor her great-great grandfather, Jeremiah James Humbert as the last Civil War soldier buried in Iowa County at the Waldwick Cemetery in Waldwick, Wisconsin with a formal ceremony performed by the Sons of the Union Veterans.
Valli is survived by her husband, John Carroll Tolleson originally of Pauls Valley, Oklahoma, brother, Robert Bruce Montgomery and his wife, Beverly (Bev) of Green Valley, Arizona, brother-in-law, Donald William Tolleson and his wife, Barbara of Windsor, Colorado, niece, Kari Ann Montgomery of Van Nuys, California, niece, Lisa Marie Montgomery of Huntsville, Alabama, niece, Shannon Cassondra Tolleson of Whiteright, Texas, cousin, Jack Terrill Humbert of Pinellas Park, FL and her two miniature Dachshunds, Guinness and Lacy. She is also survived by close family friends, Mary and Lewis Del Conte, their daughter Jody (Manuel) Del Conte-Ortiz and their children, Tina and Bill Flynt and their children, Nathan (Katherine) Flynt and Laura (Craig) Flynt Clum and their children, Linda Grana and her children, goddaughter Erin (Lee) Grana Giernoth, Kira Grana Stevens, and Kellen (Jason) Grana Wolters and their children.
She was preceded in her death by her parents and her brother-in-law Gerald Edgar Tolleson. A memorial service to celebrate her life will be held at a later date.

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