Billie Jean Cook Shapotkin, age 94, of Lombard

Written by Brust Funeral Home on May 10th, 2018

shapotkinBorn in Juneau, Alaska on July, 5 1923 Billie Jean Cook Shapotkin had no idea what was ahead of her for the next 94 years. She met our dad and in 6 weeks got married and flew to Lombard, Illinois where she had an incredible journey.

Her interest/hobbies were life to say the least. If there was a post card, stamp, greeting card, book or article she had it. She researched everything from outhouses/unique toilets, to Queens of England, and volcanos in Hawaii. There were displays with each story she wrote to present to organizations and events.

She was a wealth of information. When her grandkids had school projects, they went right to her for help, “call granny” we would say. They spent the day learning about everything they needed to write their reports, which she would also edit, and gave them visual aids to accompany their presentations/reports. Her job as a teacher and tutor for home bound students from elementary to high school kept her actively involved learning. She had a passion for knowledge and always wanted to learn more.

Billie Jean is an environmentalist’s best friend. She had an ingenious way of creating projects by recycling everything. Used greeting cards were a huge part of her repertoire. She made greeting card story books such as Mary and Joseph’s trip to Bethlehem, baskets, ornaments, place mats and even coasters. She made rugs, hats and purses by crocheting the plastic bags newspapers came in. According to her there was always another use for everything.

We would like to thank all of the amazing people that have touched her life. AAUW, Mystery Buffs. Beta Sigma Fi, stamp club, book club, her international cooking club, Girl Scouts, the Episcopal Church, bible study, and of course Avon for which she sold for 30 plus years. All of which she put her heart and soul into.

At 94 she still had her driver’s license, scary I know, baby sat at the church for the parents, gardened and made fires in her backyard on a hibachi grill reminding her of those camping days with family and friends not so long ago.

The most amazing person, she was a great listener, never spoke a bad word about anyone. She never offered advice unless you asked or said I told you so or judged anyone for their life choices.

She survived Cancer, broken hip and arm which happened in the Goodwill parking lot of all places and never cried “poor me.” Happy to be alive, “I have way to much stuff to do I cant go yet!” was her motto.

Now that our mom/grandma is with God we wish you our love and peace be with you from your daughters Carolyn and Marian, son Bill, grandkids Pamela, Laura, Steve and Stephen. We have all been blessed and look forward to seeing you in heaven to hear what new journeys you have to share.


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