Virginia “Miss Ginny” Croke, 88, of LaGrange Park and formerly of Riverside and Berwyn, died June 15, 2015 at her residence, surrounded by family and close friends.

Known for her quick wit, she was proud of her Irish heritage and enjoyed Irish music and stories. She was a loyal fan of the Fighting Irish of the University of Notre Dame, having attended many home games in her younger years with her brother-in-law, Hugh Waldron. Later in life she looked forward to every Notre Dame football season and rarely missed a televised game.

A devout Catholic, Ms. Croke attended Mass daily until her illness prevented her from doing so in person.

She was also a loyal lunch customer on Fridays at Ditka’s in Oakbrook Terrace, where she was treated like royalty and was tickled when the restaurant named a dessert after her — Miss Ginny’s Banana Split — during a recent summer to raise funds for and awareness of Alzheimer’s disease for the Alzheimer’s Association.

Her story was highlighted and honored at the Alzheimer’s Association’s 2014 Rita Hayworth Gala for her role in changing lives and being an inspiration.

Ms. Croke was the sister of Rose Marie Waldron, the daughter of John and Rose (nee Brown) Croke, and the sister-in-law of Hugh Waldron.

A funeral Mass was celebrated June 19 at St. Mary Church in Riverside, followed by interment at Queen of Heaven Cemetery.

Memorial donations are appreciated to the Alzheimer’s Association, 225 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 1700, Chicago, Illinois, 60611 ( or Rainbow Hospice and Palliative Care, 1550 Bishop Court, Mount Prospect, Illinois, 60056 (

Ivins/Moravecek Funeral Home, Riverside, handled arrangements.