Linda Zupek (nee-Schwarzwalder-Vaughan), after bravely struggling with an illness, Linda passed away on December 25th, 2017at the age of 71. She was lovingly taken care of by her family and with the support of the caring Journey Care Hospice nurses while at home and by the staff of Journey Care at Pepper Family’s Hospice Center in Barrington, Illinois during her last week. Linda lived life with the same determination as she fought her illness.
Linda was born in Elgin, Illinois on September 11th, 1946, the second daughter of Jean and Roger Schwarzwalder. She lived her childhood and youth in Elgin attending Elgin Public Schools and graduated from EHS in 1964. Long before Title IX, she showed her athletic abilities and loved to compete in sports at a time that had limited venues for female athletes, participating also as an energetic cheerleader at both EHS and at Northern Illinois University. She was an avid Chicago sports fan, never giving up on the Cubs or the Bears.
After attending NIU for two years, Linda was employed by United Airlines as a flight attendant. A strong supporter of the union and of women’s rights, she joined class action suits that fought against the “no married-no pregnant” rule that was applied to flight attendants at the time.
During her tenure as a flight attendant, she started a business as an interior decorator until she retired permanently back to Elgin to enjoy her gardening, golfing, refurbishing her home, and spending time with her family. Her family was her real pride and joy, cherishing family vacations with cousins when younger and later with her own children, her generosity in time of need, and always going big at Christmas time.
She is survived and loved by two daughters, Melissa (David) Nytko, Megan (Jeff) Turner, and her son Scott Zupek. She was also loved by her four grandchildren (Alec, Zachary, Kaitlin, and Abbigail); her sister Diane (Bob) Moline, her brother Steve (Paula) Schwarzwalder, as well as nephews and nieces, cousins, and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her aunts and uncles whom she also loved dearly, as well as a few of her many cousins.
Linda will also be remembered for her quick wit, her friendliness, independence, and her compassion for the underdog. She will be missed by all who knew and loved her.
Service and visitation will be a private family gathering. You are invited to donate memorials in her name to JourneyCare Foundation 405 Lake Zurich Rd., Barrington, IL 60010. Laird Funeral Home, Elgin is assisting the family.