Evangeline P. Jilka, 86, passed away at her farm home, Thursday, March 15, 2018, surrounded by her loving family. She was born March 17, 1931, in Park, Kansas to Mary (Spies) and Emanuel Hecker. She was an alumnus of Sacred Heart High School and attended Marymount College in Salina. Evangeline married her life’s companion; John R. Jilka on January 2, 1952; in Salina, Kansas; to this sacred union they were blessed with nine children. He preceded her in death on April 10, 1997.
Evangeline was a wonderful mother and grandmother to her family; and an essential bond to her siblings and relatives. Her family was her pride and joy, and she was very devoted to her Catholic faith. Evangeline was a parishioner of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church, where she was involved in Bible Study, Prayer Chain, Sojourners group, the choir and played the organ for many years. She was a school bus driver for U.S.D. 306 for 33 years and a long-time 4-H leader for the Mentor 4-H club. Evangeline embraced her life on the farm, had many friends and neighbors, and will be greatly missed by all.
Survivors include her children, Mary Jilka, John P. Jilka, Rose Pace (Bob), Therese Uri (Larry), Bernadette Maskarinec (Gary), Sarah Jilka, Joan Jilka, Sam Jilka, and Ann Jilka
Grandchildren: Liz (Wagoner) Cooper (Ryan), Katie A. Wagoner (deceased), Luke, Cerelia and Genny Maskarinec, and Ike Uri. Great grandchildren: Emma and Nash Cooper.
Brother, Vern Hecker (Jackie), sisters, Veronica Stafford (Don deceased), Irene Fiffe (Al), Delores Rider (Chuck), and Donna House (Roy), and many cousins, nieces and nephews; and very special family friends; Ken Ade and Greg Childress.
The funeral will be Saturday, March 24, 2018, at 11:00 a.m., at St. Elizabeth’s Ann Seaton Catholic Church in Salina, Kansas, with a Rosary preceding at 10 a.m. Burial will be at Mount Calvary Cemetery, Salina. Visitation will be Friday, March 23, 2018 at the Ryan Mortuary from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m, with a Vigil beginning at 6 p.m.
Memorials may be made to Catholic Charities or St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church, Salina, Kansas.