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Elizabeth Thornton Woerner
Born in Kobe, Japan on Oct. 30, 1909
Departed on Nov. 18, 2005 and resided in Springfield, IL.
Cemetery: Oaklawn Memorial Gardens


Elizabeth Thornton Woerner was born October 30, 1909 in Kobe, Japan, the fourth of six children born to missionary parents, Eliza and Jesse Thornton. She died November 18, 2005 at her daughter's home in Carmel. She graduated from the Canadian Academy in Kobe and moved to St. Louis where she met her husband, Irvin Woerner, at her father's church and married in 1931. She was in the 1928 class at Blackburn College in Carlinville, Illinois. She and her husband had two children. They moved to Indianapolis in 1945, and she worked at the Wm. H. Block Co. and Western Electric until the family moved to the Chicago area in 1953. She and her husband returned to Indianapolis in 1967 where she worked at Indiana Bell until her retirement in 1972. They moved to Carmel in 1975 and Irvin died in 1977. She then managed her son-in-law's dental office until she again retired in 1988. She moved from Carmel to Springfield, Illinois in 1989 and lived there until a month before her death.
Surviving are a sister, Lydia Darragh of Hastings, Nebraska; two children: Judith (Ronald) Bowman of Carmel, Indiana, and Philip (Barbara) Woerner of Springfield, Illinois; six grandchildren: Christine (Ronald) D'Onofrio, Keith (Brenda) Bowman, Elizabeth Clifford, Amy (Jeff) Christie, Thornton (Judith) Woerner, and Graham (April) Woerner; 22 great-grandchildren, and two great-great grandchildren.
She is remembered by her family and friends for her gracious spirit, her wise counsel, and her Christian faith which was exemplified in her life.
Services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, November 22 at Grace Community Church, 5504 East 146th Street, Noblesville, IN 46060. Friends may call from 4 to 8 p.m. Monday, November 21, at Harry Moore Family Mortuary, 8151 Allisonville Road, Indianapolis, or at the church from 10-11 a.m. before the services on Tuesday. Burial at Oaklawn Cemetery will follow the services.

Elizabeth Thornton Woerner
October 30, 1909 - November 18, 2005

"Aunt Elizabeth was very much the lady, in my memories. Whenever our extended family gathered, she seemed to be more reserved than the others. Nevertheless I have a keen sense of her as a prime force in the growth of cousins Judy and Phillip. Ladies can pick black berries in the Ozarks, in July - hot, humid July - too. Ladies can share the kitchen work of preparing Thanksgiving dinner for all the Thornton clan. In the later years I had little contact with Aunt Elizabeth, but I felt as though my connection with the Woerner family was solid and good. (Perhaps the focus our families have had on serving God wherever we were has prompted us to meet well and, despite long absences, pick up relationships where we last were. By both Thornton blood and Christ's blood (the new birth) we all have enjoyed a unique family relationship. While she (as far as my memory goes) may have been less in the public eye, still I believe that her "works do follow her". The commitment of her children to also follow Christ in life and service is one means by which her 'children rise up and call her blessed'".
Charles G. Thornton, November 2005

"She was as beautiful in body and spirit as any person I have known."
Samuel W. Thornton, Jr., November 2005

"Dear family and friends,
On Oct 16 we picked up mother for church and it was quite apparent that she was jaundiced. We went out for brunch with the family and she seemed about as usual. The next morning I took her to her MD and he ran a CAT scan which was read as a 1.6 cm. gallstone in her bile duct. She was admitted to the hospital and it took 3 days to get her blood clotting mechanism in order because she had been on coumadin for several years for atrial fibrillation. On Thurs, Oct 20, the gastroenterologists did a procedure -- looked through her stomach into her duodenum and then fed a probe into the bile duct. The upshot was that the stone would not dislodge and from the cholangiogram (x-ray of the bile duct with contrast material) they felt it was most likely a cholangiocarcinoma which is a malignancy of the bile duct. They put in a stent to try to let the bile drain from above the tumor into the bile duct below. It is not working as well as we might have hoped. On Tues we took her to Judy's in Carmel, IN, where there's a 1 story house and 4 grandchildren and 17 great grandchildren nearby to help. We've had the films reviewed by a couple of people and all agree with the diagnosis although it's not absolute because there is no tissue sample. All involved have agreed that there should be no aggressive treatment in view of her age and her mild to moderate Alzheimer's. For us the hardest thing is that she has no appetite which will make her die much more quickly. She has a hospital bed and hospice has been there and will be of great help. I expect her to live only a matter of days to weeks although I could certainly be wrong.

"On the brighter side, she's been ready to go home for a couple of years. She has had a wonderful life and has been a blessing to so many people. Although she might not be able to sit and name all of the 40 or so people among her progeny and can't remember many things from one minute to the next, she recognizes everyone and carries on a good conversation. She is, as always, kind and gracious. When Judy visited the hospital and commented that it's hard to be so sick, Mother's response was, "Yes, especially when you know where you want to be." It will be a joyous homegoing. It's just hard for those by whom she is so loved."
Phil Woerner, October 2005


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