Margaret Suzanne Bern


Lead around by a big smile and an even bigger heart, out of all the people she met, she never met a stranger. Margaret Suzanne Bern, 85, of Galesburg, passed away at her home on December 3, 2023.

She was born in Galesburg in 1938 to Wayne Cronable and Ethell Carol, who gave her a childhood full of love and kindness in nearby Knoxville. Margaret met the love of her life, Richard Bern, there in Knoxville, and neither of their lives were ever the same. Excited to start their new lives together, the two were married in 1957. Rumor is only God and Margaret could see the crossed fingers she held behind her back as she lied to the minister and assured him “Yes, my parents gave me permission to marry this man.” (all the while knowing that her and Dick had kept their plans to elope a secret from both their parents.) The crossed fingers must have worked because they led a blessed and adventurous life making friends everywhere they went, whether at home in Galesburg or while exploring far flung regions in Germany and Europe.

Their marriage was even furthered blessed with two sons, Rick and Mark, whom she adored. Margaret is survived by her loving husband Richard, and those two sons Rick (Juanita) and Mark (Melinda). Even further, she is survived by her ten grandchildren and twelve great-grandchildren.

Margaret Suzanne Bern will always be remembered for her cheerful disposition and her ability to blithely live in the moment through every interaction and conversation, which was a welcome model for all of those who were lucky to have been graced by her colorful kindness and desire to connect.

Cremation rites have been accorded. A celebration of her life will be held at 1 PM on Saturday, January 6, 2023 at the Maranatha Chapel, 2031 US-150, Alpha. Hurd-Hendricks Funeral Homes and Crematory, Knoxville will be assisting the family with arrangements. Memorials may be to the family to decide on a charity at a later date. Online condolences may be left to the family at

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