Ann Wendel died Wednesday (Aug. 31, 2016) at her home in Champaign. She was born in Charleston, Illinois, on November 8, 1948, the daughter of Reece and Helen Jane (Swinford) Wendel. She married Michael L. Page on May 31, 1980, in Oakland, Illinois.
She was preceded in death by her parents. She is survived by her husband; her brother Sam (Jane) Wendel of Indianapolis; nieces Jennifer (Jeremiah) Bolander of Indianapolis and Rachel Buckler of Tuscola; nephews Matt (Mel Sexton) Wendel of Bluffton, South Carolina, Mike (April) Wendel of Indianapolis, and Taylor Buckler and Josh Buckler of Oakland; brother-in-law Alan Buckler of Oakland; and sisters-in-law Cindy Buckler of Oakland and Cherry Coffrin of Charleston. She also is survived by her special friends Pat Sammann and Russ Pence.
Ann attended Oakland High School, from which she graduated in 1966 as Valedictorian. She then went to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where she completed her undergraduate degree. Ann was a James Scholar and a member of Phi Beta Kappa. She then completed a master’s degree in Journalism and graduated with honors.
Upon graduation from the University of Illinois, Ann went to work for Research Press in Champaign, where she spent her entire career. She began as a copyeditor and rose to become president of the company, retiring from the firm in 2004.
In both her professional and her personal life Ann was first and foremost a caring person. She truly lived her life putting others first, trying to do as much as she could for as many as she could for as long as she could. She loved to listen to people to better understand them. Even in retirement, she tried to help others through her volunteer work at the Wesley Evening Food Pantry.
Ann also had a passion for learning and the written word. She was a voracious reader, with extensive interests in history, politics, economics, and the sciences. She also loved to learn about other cultures, and she was an ardent fan of domestic and international cinema. She was continually trying to make sense of the world.
Finally, Ann was always unpredictable! She was unafraid to ask you challenging questions, admit to having off-the-wall notions, and just happily be crazy from time to time. She will be sorely missed.
No services will be held. Memorials may be made to the charity of the donor’s choice.
Online condolences may be offered at www.HeathandVaughn.com.
Dear family of Ann Wendel,
Please accept my heart-felt condolences. I pray you may feel God’s peace as you mourn Ann’s loss and celebrate her life.
I am the former director of Wesley Evening Food Pantry in Urbana. For many, many years Ann and I worked together every month to feed our neighbors. Ann worked most often in the room where people were waiting for their turn to choose their groceries. She had a warm smile for everyone. She had an amazing ability to comfort first-time visitors with her relaxed and friendly explanations of how the pantry worked. I learned a lot from watching her interactions and will miss her.