Brodhead – Nora Kreher McManus, passed away on April 3, 2022 at Kettle Park Senior Living in Stoughton. She was born on February 12, 1927 on a remote farm in Hamilton County, IL to Joseph and Madgalena (Karcher) Kreher. In order to attend high school, at age 14, Nora moved to McLeansboro, IL where she worked as a domestic for room and board. She graduated as salutatorian of her class. Nora was the first person in her family to attend college, earning a B.S. degree in Botany and an M.S. degree in Botany and Education at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. In 1950, her M.S. thesis was the first ever submitted in the Department of Botany (later Plant Biology) at SIU. While at SIU she met and married Charles McManus. Nora was an elementary school teacher in Missouri and Wisconsin in the 1950s and 1960s and continued as a substitute teacher in Brodhead through the 1980s. With her husband, she owned and operated McManus Oil Company in Brodhead for 26 years. Nora volunteered in her community and church in many capacities. She served as a Cub Scout Den leader and Girl Scout Troop leader, as President of the American Legion Auxiliary, and as an election poll worker. For many years she chaperoned Brodhead 6th graders on their annual outdoor education trip to Camp MacLean, where she shared her expertise in botany and passion for the natural world. She was a member of the St. Rose of Lima Catholic Women and taught catechism at St. Rose. In the late 1980s she was recognized as Outstanding Woman of the Year by the Brodhead Jaycees. Nora enjoyed nature and wildlife, reading poetry, and working crossword puzzles and other word games. She maintained a beautiful yard and flower gardens that always drew compliments from passersby. Above all, Nora was a loving and devoted wife, mother, and grandmother.
Survivors include her son Philip (Sandra) McManus of Albany; daughters Kathleen Klein of Edgerton; Carolyn (Timothy) Tiller of Blue River; Mary (Scott) Laube of Brodhead; and Patricia (Murray Clayton) McManus of Middleton; and numerous grandchildren and great grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husband and a son-in-law, James Klein.
The family expresses deep gratitude to the staff of Kettle Park Senior Living for providing Nora with excellent care and friendship.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be directed to the family in Nora’s memory.
Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church, 1005 West 2nd Avenue in Brodhead on Tuesday, April 19 at 11:00 AM. A visitation will also be held at the church on Tuesday, April 19, 2022 from 9:30 AM until the time of Mass. Burial will conclude at Greenwood Cemetery in Brodhead, WI.