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Elsie Mae (Jefko) Carlson, 83, entered into Glory peacefully on April 6, 2018 in her home surrounded by her family.
She was the youngest of five children born to Charley and Minnie (Crane) Vaughn on April 25, 1934 in Herrin, Illinois. At two years of age, her mother passed away and she spent her early childhood years in Carterville, Illinois living with her sisters and cousins. She moved with her father to Rockford in 1949, graduating from West High School in 1951. She cherished her lifelong friendship of 70 years with Celine Daul and her two daughters, Laree and Rene.
Elsie married her first love, Edmund Peter Jefko, on August 26, 1951. The Lord blessed them with 8 children, 19 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren, 1 great-great grandchild.
Family was her most precious treasure here on earth. Elsie enjoyed spending time with her children and grand-children on holidays, family reunions, and vacations in the USA and abroad. She lived life with a big beautiful smile, a great sense of humor, and a heart filled with love.
Later in life, Elsie married her second love, Gunny Carlson on May 7th, 1978, which added his 3 children, 3 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren to her family. Elsie & Gunny were avid Chicago Bear fans and as season ticket holders attended Chicago Bear home football games and enjoyed tailgating with friends.
Visiting relatives in Southern Illinois with her children, ballroom dancing, snowmobiling, and visiting the homebound were some of her favorite past-times. Elsie taught Sunday school, mentored young moms, and served on the Caring and Wellspring committees at Rock Church where she was a member for over 25 years.
Elsie had various jobs to support her young family, including Broadway Camera, Stanley Home Products and a 25-year career as a manager of GNC.
She is survived and will be missed by her children Charlie (Cynthia) Jefko, Bruce (Judi) Jefko, Patricia Ann (Robert) Myers, John Jefko, Jeff (Allura) Jefko , Debbie (Tom) Perkins, Sue (Randy) Schumacher, Jodi Hanna, and her grandchildren. Special thanks to Danakuh, her loving caregiver of two years and Hospice Care of America.
She was predeceased by her husband Edmund Jefko (1962), husband Gunny Carlson (1995), step-daughter Janet Witt, three sisters, Marie, Rose, and Louise, and her brother Butch.
Funeral Service will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday, April 10th, 2018, at Rock Church, 6732 Harrison Avenue, Rockford, IL with Reverend Jared Katke officiating. Visitation will be held 4 p.m. - 7 p.m. Monday, April 9th, 2018, at the church and 10 a.m. until 10:45 a.m., Tuesday, April 10th, 2018 prior to the service. Burial will be in Scandinavian Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the family who will be establishing a fund to support single moms in need.

Condolences & Shared Memories (16)

  1. Sue Klock

    Deb & Tom and everyone - I was so sorry to read about the loss of your sweet mother and grandmother. Deb - I sent you a FB message, and just now saw that the funeral is today. I'm so sorry that I did not see the details in time. My heart has been with you all, and I so enjoyed the times I got to be with Elsie, and her smile always lit up the room. Prayers to all of you.

  2. Kathy Baxter

    I was always happy to see Elsie in worship with her bright smile and loving way. May the Lord hold you all close here and comfort your hearts until you meet again. Blessings, love and peace always in His presence.

  3. Jane and Steve Furness

    We are so sorry to hear of your loss but so happy to know that Elsie is in the presence of her Savior. What a wonderful legacy of love and faith she bequeathed to us all. When I lost my own mom almost 20 years ago, Deb, you shared yours with me. Elsie's joy and gratitude were infectious, as she taught us all about what it means to "overflow with hope" through the power of the Holy Spirit. We wish we could be there with you, to celebrate her homegoing. Much love, many hugs, and ongoing prayers for you all as you work through the coming days and weeks. We are thinking of you all and praying God's strength and peace sustain you. xoxo Jane, Steve, Walt, Jack, Quinn, and Abbie

  4. Tammy Fitzjerrells

    So sorry to hear about Aunt Elsie. She was such a beautiful and sweet person. She will be missed. Prayers for the family and friends.

  5. Linnie Hardin

    Have always Loved, admired and appreciated Elsie. Such a warm and loving woman. So encouraging to so many. She smiled with her entire being. She was so proud of her family and appreciated each and every member of her family and Elsie was a loyal friend. She will be sorely missed.

  6. Glen Hulvey (Hobi)

    Sha was a great person to all who knew her. Loved her big smile and great personality. I pray that God will be with all of her family in these trying times. My prayers are with you all. May God help you, be with you and carry you when necessary. Love you all.

  7. Rodney Faust

    Charlie, My deepest thoughts and prayers to you and your Family. It sounds like your Mom was an Incredible lady! Cherish all the Memories my friend. Take care and God Bless.

  8. Wendy

    Our sweet Aunt Elsie was such loving and happy auntie. Seeing her and visits to her house are some of my most cherished memories. Her light will be missed here and we were blessed in every moment with her. Family in heaven is rejoicing with their beautiful angel. Condolences and prayers of comfort for those grieving.

  9. Jane Ferguson

    Loved Aunt Elsie. Prayers for All.

  10. Roberta Wegener

    While I didn't know Elsie very well, I know some of her family. The words they spoke of her shows she was an amazing strong woman who loved her family. She will be missed dearly by her family who love her with all their heart. My prayers are will all of her family while they celebrate her life and say goodbye but only for a short time until they meet her again.

  11. Dave and Lori Thurman

    Loved seeing her sweet smile may the God of all comfort be with her loved ones and friends

  12. Romano DeSimone

    I married into the Jefko family and from the start Elsie was an aunt to me. God bless you will be missed.

  13. Denise Hulvey Johnson

    Aunt Elsie, such an awesome and amazing mother, grandmother, aunt... She touched many lives in such inspirational ways. I always looked forward to seeing her and loved listening to her life-stories... such a beautiful person, inside and out.

  14. Luan Sandusky

    I was blessed to meet Elsie one time. I looked at her and said " You are just beautiful !" She smiled at me and I thought she was going to say "thank you ", but so exuberantly she said "Oh, I love you!" I said "Good" She was so cute

  15. Mari Lynn Munson

    I have a vision of my mom being excited to welcome Elsie to heaven with a big hug! What rejoicing is happening right now! God bless you all!

  16. Rick Fritz

    Elsie was one of the sweetest women I have known. She has passed that on to all she met. Great families come from great heritage. Pass it on.

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