When Silvia Michl celebrated her 100th birthday, she knew just where to go – the New Seneca Restaurant on Cermak Road in Berwyn, her favorite. Family and friends gathered to help her celebrate a long and full life.
“It was fantastic and beautiful people attended,” she told Landmark columnist JoAnne Kosey in 2009, shortly after the occasion.
On June 21, 2012, Ms. Michl (nee Sara) died, just a couple of weeks short of her 103rd birthday, which she would have celebrated on July 4.
In her column about Ms. Michl’s 100th birthday in July of 2009, Kosey wrote that Ms. Michl grew up in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood.
She worked for 42 years as a telephone operator for Illinois Bell, and according to the daughter of one of Ms. Michl’s close friends, she had “a showbiz streak” as well. She took tap dancing lessons, and until late in life she continued to enjoy line dancing and playing the organ.
Ms. Michl also told Kosey that she enjoyed playing cards, particularly bridge and pinochle. Asked the secret to her long life, she said, “I enjoy everyday activities and taking care of my home, which is big, and I like taking care of it.”
Ms. Michl moved to Riverside in the 1980s and, despite being a senior citizen, joined the Riverside Junior Woman’s Charity, who named her Junior of the Year two consecutive times.
Ms. Michl was the wife of the late Charles Michl; the sister of James Sara and the late Caroline Cinatl. Surviving her are also the team of people who enhanced Ms. Michl’s life and took such good care of her, including Judith Olson, Pat and Mike Black, Jeanne Heidler, Jackie Lovell, Phil Leary, Carmen Salcido, Nurse Daryl Gladore, Nurse Mylene Apurillo, the entire hospice team, including Baranka, Joan, Heather all others devoted to Silvia, Susan Wolski, the entire Brightstar Team, including Leslie Thomas, Brian Thomas, Beverly Thomas and her long-term supporters Dr. Donald Dettore, the Riverside fire and police departments and all that nurtured her.
A memorial service celebrating Ms. Michl’s life will be held on Thursday, July 5 at 10:30 a.m. at Ivins/Moravecek Funeral Home, 80 E. Burlington St. in Riverside. Inurnment was held privately at Queen of Heaven Cemetery.