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Elizabeth Downey - 81

5/19/1935 - 8/9/2016
Sioux Falls, S.D.

     Elizabeth “Liz” (Sims) Downey, 81, of Sioux Falls, S.D., formerly of Ohio, Ill., died Tuesday, Aug, 9, 2016 after a brief stay at Palisade Healthcare Center in Garretson, S.D.

     Liz was born May 19, 1935 in Tiskilwa, Ill., to Paul and Agatha (Taylor) Sims. She married Joseph “Joe” Downey, of Ohio, on Nov. 27, 1954 at St. Mary’s Church in Tiskilwa. Joe preceded her in death in 2005. Liz and Joe were devoted to each other, their children, grandchildren, and extended families. Liz had a great heart and empathy for the handicapped and underdog. When she lived in Loves Park, Ill., she worked as a paraprofessional in a school for youth with disabilities. She later worked with the disabled at Gateway in Princeton, Ill. After they moved to the Downey family farm in Ohio, Liz and Joe were foster parents to a number of children in need of a stable, loving home. Liz also was a member of the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Ohio where she was involved in the Ohio Council of Catholic Women.

     Survivors include three daughters, Teresa (Gary) Gabriel of Brenham, Texas, Deborah (Patrick) Clark of Omaha, Neb., and Amy (Phil Gartner) Downey of Glenview; two sons, Larry (Carolyn) Downey of Kennesaw, Ga. and Paul (Therese) Downey of Sioux Falls, S.D.; five sisters, Jenirose (Donald) Houston of Tiskilwa, Mary Sims of Loves Park, Clara (George) Janet of The Villages, Fla; Cecelia Sims of Princeton and Carol (Mark) Albrecht of Ohio; three brothers, Cletus (Nancy) Sims of Tiskilwa, Frederick (Sharon) Sims of St. Charles and Edward (Mary Jo) Sims of Palatine; ten grandchildren, Dana (Jason) Smith, Erin Clark, Haley Clark, Katherine (Ryan) Gartin, Samantha Downey, Melissa Downey, Christopher Downey, Sean Downey, Anna Gartner and Abby Gartner; two great-grandchildren, Charlotte Smith and Adam Gartin; and many, many treasured nieces and nephews.

     Liz was preceded in death by her husband, parents, and brother, Charles Sims (survived by wife, Phyllis).

     Visitation will be 5-7 p.m., Mon, Aug. 15, 2016 at the Garland Funeral Home, Walnut, Ill., and 9 – 9:45 a.m., Tues., Aug. 16 at the Church of the Immaculate Conception, Ohio. Celebration of the Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10 a.m. Tuesday at the church with Reverend Thomas Shaw officiating. Burial will be at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Ohio. Immediately following the burial, please join Liz’s family for lunch at the church.

A memorial has been established to the Alzheimer’s Association.

Online condolences may be sent to garlandfuneralhome.com.

View Elizabeth Downey's Guestbook

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