Cover photo for Nora M. Heidecke's Obituary
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1930 Nora 2024

Nora M. Heidecke

February 2, 1930 — March 8, 2024


Nora Margaret Heidecke (nee Monaghan), aged 94 and a long-time resident of Stoughton, WI, passed away in the presence of her family and in care of Agrace Hospice at Skaalen Assisted Living on March 8, 2024. She was born at Cook County Hospital in Chicago, IL, on February 2, 1930, the fourth of eight children and first daughter of John and Mary (Gaittens) Monaghan. 

She grew up in Lyons, IL, where she attended St. Hugh Catholic Grade School. Growing up on the DesPlaines River in Lyons, in the shadow of the Hoffman Tower, Nora began her life-long love of roller skating, as she quickly learned and later mastered the sport while skating at the nearby Millbridge Roller Rink. Working at the roller rink, skating and later, performing on a competitive skate dancing circuit dominated social activity while she attended high school for two years at St. Leonard in Stickney, IL. 

Having distinguished herself academically at St. Leonard, she continued her high school education at Nazareth Academy of LaGrange, IL, on a full academic scholarship. While attending Nazareth, Nora realized her considerable academic strengths and potential, as well as her love for children and the process of helping them learn. Upon graduating from Nazareth Academy in 1948, she considered joining the Order of the Sisters of St. Joseph and served the order as a postulant for three years. She eventually reconsidered her vocational path and opted for a secular career, but teaching and caring for children remained her passion throughout her adult life. 

With an associate degree in liberal arts, Nora initially found work at the Burlington Railroad, where she met her one true love, an aspiring locomotive engineer, Arthur John Heidecke of Berwyn, IL. They were married on September 11, 1954, and shortly thereafter, Nora was hired as a kindergarten teacher at St. Attracta Catholic School in Cicero, IL. Over the course of her career as a mother and teacher, Nora worked as a primary and substitute teacher in several Chicagoland Catholic Schools. 

During the early years of their marriage, Nora and Art had six children: four girls and two boys, including identical twin girls. They bought their first small home in Downers Grove, IL, in 1956, but soon needed to up-size to accommodate the fast-growing family. In 1960, they moved to a larger bungalow in Berwyn, IL, where they remained for fourteen years. In1974, they bought and moved into their architecturally distinct dream home in Oak Park, IL. Nora was a loving and devoted mother, using her teaching skills to create an organized and stimulating home life for her own children as well as many neighborhood children. In each home, Nora genuinely enjoyed hosting extended family and friends on the holidays and for special occasions. 

All the while, she remained active in her teaching career. Starting in 1974, she worked for three years as a curriculum manager for the Morton College School of Nursing. She then earned additional credentials, which later qualified her to work with special needs and at-risk high school students in Franklin Park, IL, and finally, with a premiere program in Eagle River, WI. Upon retiring from teaching, she continued to work several more years, assisting with inventory management at her sister and brother-in-law’s floor covering business in the Madison, WI area.

After living for a brief time in Scottsdale, AZ, Nora and Arthur moved to Stoughton in 1990 and lived in their home on Moe Circle until they moved to Vennevol, part of the Skaalen retirement community. Nora was blessed to have a long and fruitful life, and even continued roller skating into her seventies, when she strapped on a pair of in-line skates and took off down the street without a hitch. 

She was well-loved and will be deeply missed by many. She is survived by her husband of sixty-nine years, a decorated Korean War Veteran, Arthur John Heidecke, 91, of Stoughton, WI.

Nora is also survived by her children, Marianne, Father Albert, Margaret, Barbara and Thomas Heidecke, as well as grandchildren, Jessica Hebert and Arthur and Erin Hebert-Ryan. Daughter, Nora Anne was deceased in 1999. 

A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, April 13, 2024 beginning at 9:30am at St. Ann Catholic Church in Stoughton, WI. Memorial Mass will begin at 10:30am at church.

Please share your memories of Nora by posting in her Guestbook.
Cress Funeral Services
206 W. Prospect Street, PO Box 231, Stoughton
(608) 873-9244
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Nora M. Heidecke, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

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Saturday, April 13, 2024

9:30 - 10:30 am (Central time)

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Saturday, April 13, 2024

10:30 - 11:30 am (Central time)

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