Miriam J. Stewart — Benton, Illinois

Mrs. Miriam Jane Stewart, age 84, of Benton, passed away Monday, May 4, 2020 at the Stonebridge Nursing and Rehab Center of Benton.

Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic, and the public gatherings of no more than 10 people and observing social distancing; Private graveside services will be at the Masonic and Odd Fellows Cemetery of Benton. The Leffler Funeral Home, of Benton, is in charge of arrangements.

Miriam was born on August 23, 1935 in Benton, the daughter of Howard Whaley and Madge (Keaton) Whaley. She married Harry Stewart on July 16, 1954, and he preceded her in death on September 18, 2011.

Before her retirement, she worked for the Franklin County Clerk’s office as Chief Deputy County Clerk. She was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Benton.

Mrs. Stewart enjoyed gambling, especially playing slot machines and betting on horses. She also enjoyed crafts, entertaining friends and family, traveling, but most of all, she enjoyed spending time with her family, especially her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Surviving are three children: Laura Stewart of Bloomington, IL, Dr. Kelly Stewart of Benton, Lex Stewart and wife Shannon of Benton; three grandsons: Alex Stewart, Jon Pulliam and wife Kaitlynn, Landon Stewart, all three of Benton; three great-grandchildren: Daniel Stewart Hobbs, Braxton Stewart, Keaton Pulliam; and longtime caregiver and personal assistant Daphne Hamby; three cousins; and several dear nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her father Howard Whaley (died in the Battle of the Bulge); mother Madge (Keaton) Whaley Jones; step-father Wayne Jones; and her husband Harry Stewart.

Memorial contributions, In Memory of Miriam J. Stewart, may be made to either the Harry Stewart Memorial Scholarship Fund or to the Benton Ministerial Alliance Food Pantry; and may be mailed to the Leffler Funeral Home, 401 East Main Street, Benton, IL 62812.

To leave online condolences to the family, or to share memories of Miriam, visit www.lpfuneralhome.com

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