Jean Marie Groce

Jean Marie Groce 
Jean Marie Groce (Bollinger) was born in East St. Louis, Illinois, on 21 April 1937, along with her maternal twin, Janet L. Bollinger (2013), to Thomas Isaac Bollinger and Blanche G. Caudle Bollinger. Jean graduated from Cahokia High School in 1955. There, she met her future husband, Gary F. Groce, class of ’54. 
Jean Marie married Gary on 22 March 1957, at the Mount Calvary Lutheran Church, shortly after he was drafted into the U. S. Army. Their ceremony was held three weeks before Gary left for basic training at Ft. Lewis, where they lived off-base in Olympia, WA.
Upon leaving the Army, Jean and Gary returned to Cahokia. Jean completed her training to become a radiology technician. The couple had two children, Terry and Scott, then moved to Belleville, IL in the late-sixties. Jean worked as a technician at Belleville Memorial Hospital, eventually settling into mammography. She worked there for twenty-one years until her retirement in 1996.
When Gary retired in 1998, the couple moved to Warsaw, MO, where they lived happily for twenty years. They were members of the Edmonson Baptist Church in Lincoln, about fifteen miles from Warsaw. Jean always spoke lovingly about her “church family” there. The couple’s neighbors in Warsaw were helpful to the point of selflessness. Friends and neighbors, knowing that either Jean or Gary was not in good health, would cut their grass, bring them food, clear their driveway of snow; but most importantly, they stopped by the house to speak with Jean Marie on her front porch where she liked to watch birds in the sunshine. These conversations with friends and neighbors were important to her.
After twenty years in Warsaw’s Sterett Creek Village, Jean and Gary sold their home and moved to Oregon to be closer to their sons. They relocated to Tillamook, coastal Oregon, where Jean Marie Groce passed away on the morning of 26 November 2019, the day of her only grandson’s birthday, in her own living room.
Jean left behind her husband, Gary F. Groce; her younger brother and sister, Alfred Bollinger and Phyllis Fagan; three grandchildren—Nadan, Alexander (1988 to 2015), and Semele; and both sons, Terry and Scott (married to Jacqueline).
Jean Marie Groce was buried on 6 December 2019, in the Willamette National Cemetery, Portland, OR.
 

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