Dolores Marie Link was born on the first day of summer: June 21st,
1934 in the beautiful, quaint town of Quincy, Illinois located on the Mighty
Mississippi River. She was the sixth of nine children born to the late Philip
and Edna (Maas) Link. They were a big Catholic family that lived above
the family-owned grocery (Link’s Grocery). Dolores remembers working as
a clerk there and eating lots of candy growing up! Her love of candy,
especially chocolate was something she never outgrew!
When Dolores was a teenager, the family moved to a farm in the small
town of Hardin where she attended and graduated as salutatorian of her
class from Hardin High School in 1952. Dolores declined the request of her
father to attend college and instead worked as a price estimator for five
years at Central Fiber Carton.
Dolores met the handsome John Frank Neumann known by the
nickname, “Jack” at a Catholic Youth Club function. They fell in love quickly
and were married on Thanksgiving Day (November 22, 1956) in Saint
John’s Catholic Church. At that time, Jack was still attending and working
on his degree in business at Quincy College. During their first year of
marriage, they lived in a small fishing camp on the river and often would
fish right off the porch. Upon graduation, Jack began his career working for
Packaging Corporation of America. A few years later, Jack was transferred
and they moved away from their Quincy relatives and friends to Highland,
Indiana (a suburb of Chicago) where they really settled into raising and
growing their family. Dolores and Jack had five children: Steve, Terri,
Linda, Dan, and Bill. Dolores was happiest when she was holding a baby
on her lap. Family was at the center of everything Jack and Dolores did
and they passed on what they valued most, which was faith, education, and
a strong work ethic. Dolores and Jack made sure that dinner was served at
a specific time, prayers were said, manners were enforced, chores were
completed, homework was done, and games were played. Dolores
especially loved board games and cards. The family also enjoyed camping.
A large map of the United States hung on the kitchen wall with red
markings all over it showing the routes and the places that they traveled.
Their youngest child, Bill, was born eleven years after the first four, and
Dolores began babysitting other children in the neighborhood; she believed
that it was good for Bill to grow up with other children in the home so that
he wouldn’t become spoiled. When Bill was in middle school, they moved
to a twelve-acre farm. Dolores raised chickens and rabbits along with
tending a garden while Jack retired early from his job as Plant Manager
and started a new job as a rural mail carrier. In their spare time, they
volunteered at the local hospital. They lived on the farm for seventeen
When Jack retired from his second career as a mail carrier, they moved
to Bloomington, IN. There they continued their service as hospital
volunteers working weekly at Bloomington Hospital for more than ten years.
They also enjoyed volunteering at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater.
In 2008, Dolores was diagnosed with a brain tumor and underwent
surgery to successfully remove it. In 2012, they lost their eldest child,
Steve (age 54), to cancer. In 2016, Dolores lost her husband of nearly sixty
years to prostate cancer. She continued to live in Bloomington for three
more years after Jack’s death, and then moved to Louisville, KY for her
final four years to be nearer to her daughter, Linda.
Dolores was known by her friends at Village Crossing Retirement
Community as sweet, kind, independent, and the one who ALWAYS wears
brightly-colored sneakers and NEVER eats her vegetables! She loved to
play Bingo and volunteered each week at the community’s store. She will
be deeply missed by her family and friends. Do we really ever have
enough time with one another?
Dolores was preceded in death by her husband Jack, son, Steve, and
siblings, Georgie and David. She was survived by six siblings: Phyllis,
Paul, Jack, Bob, Jim, and Barb. Dolores is also survived by daughters,
Terri (Bill) Wiggins, Linda (Jeff) Sprague, and sons, Dan (Barb) Neumann,
and Bill (Debbie) Neumann; fifteen grandchildren: Beth, Luke, Zach, and
Josh (Neumann) Joe, Jeanie, and John (Wiggins), Joelle, Evie, and Matt
(Sprague), Brandon and Bryce (Neumann), and Allie, Sarah, and Jake
(Neumann) and thirteen great grandchildren!
The family requests those who wish to express sympathy
to consider making a donation to the American Cancer
society in Dolores Neumann’s name.