Arlette M. Grubbe, age 72, formerly of Elmhurst, IL, passed away January 12, 2023, in Elgin, after a series of health problems. She was born in Chicago on February 12, 1950, to Albert and Melba Grubbe.
Arlette graduated from York High School in Elmhurst, Class of 1968, and pursued higher education at Northern Illinois University (B.A. 1972) and California State University, Fresno (M.S.W. 1978). Arlette spent her entire career in the healthcare field, starting as a social worker at Michael Reese Hospital in Chicago. In California, she was the AIDS program coordinator in San Mateo County, and upon returning to Illinois, Arlette became a hospice social worker at Alexian Brothers Hospital. Her longest service (1988 until retirement in 2018) was to Shriners Hospitals for Children, Chicago, where she held several positions in social work and hospital administration.
Arlette loved to cook, garden and entertain; she enjoyed the theater, antiques and a good book. She had a passion for history and travel, visiting Egypt, South Africa, Japan, and Europe, as well as this country’s cities and sites. The environment, wildlife, and pet rescue were among her many concerns.
Arlette is survived by her lifetime partner, Debbie Ahlstrand, who will miss Arlette’s sense of humor, companionship, wealth of knowledge, and keen memory. She is also survived by her in-laws, Cindy and Kirk Merley; nephews, Ken (Lora) Merley and Chris (Poe) Merley; brother, Deen (Julie) Grubbe; and his children, Jennifer Grubbe and David Grubbe.
A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Arlette’s name to the World Wildlife Fund, 1250 24th Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20037 (1-800-960-0993) or Shriners Hospitals for Children, P.O. Box 1525, Ranson, WV 25438 (1-855-365-4438).
Final arrangements entrusted to Symonds-Madison Funeral Home. For more information, call 847-741-1128 or visit www.symondsmadison.com.
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