Cover photo for Martha Chellew's Obituary
1926 Martha 2022

Martha Chellew

September 24, 1926 — August 11, 2022

Martha Chellew of Harbor City, California died in her home on August 11, 2022. She was 95.

Martha was born in Peoria, Illinois on September 24, 1926. Always known to those close to her as Marts, she lived with her parents and her sister Jean in Illinois and Albuquerque, New Mexico before moving to Los Angeles in 1942. She graduated from St. Andrew High School in Pasadena and Immaculate Heart College in the city. Marts was an elementary teacher in the LA County School System for 31 years. Before and after her retirement, she cared for her parents in their home in Harbor City.

Marts loved to read westerns, mysteries, and her Bible. She was very interested in the Amish culture and visited many of their communities. Her great passion was driving, and her jaunts around the country were legendary. Long drives across the United States were routine for her. Her special area was the Gold Rush country in California. She knew each highway and back road in the state, never needing an atlas or GPS. She stopped at every museum and old bookstore, soaking in all the history and culture of the Old West, always ready to drive over the next hill, and thrilled to know what was on the other side. Hopefully, a good cup of coffee.

Family was most important to Marts. As a daughter, sister, and cherished aunt, her love, generosity, and caring nature were felt by generations of her extended family. All will cherish memories of her many visits and her welcoming hospitality in her home. She will be loved and remembered forever.

The family would like to express their sincere appreciation and gratitude to Theresa Jaramillo, Mildred Cabanas, Dina, Mely, and all the caregivers who provided Marts with wonderful care and companionship.

Marts was preceded in death by her parents, Chester Chellew and Stasia (Sweeney) Chellew, her sister Jean (Chellew) McGann, and her brother-in-law Jack McGann.

She is survived by her nephews Steve (Ruth) McGann, Tony (Kathy) McGann, Matt (Debbie) McGann, Brian (Tricia) McGann, Greg (Leta) McGann, and Ed Profumo, her niece Marty (McGann) Profumo, and many great nephews and great nieces.

Please join us for a visitation on Saturday, September 24th at 10:00 a.m. at Wright & Salmon Mortuary, 2416 N. North Street, Peoria, IL 61604, followed by a prayer service at 11:00 a.m.

Memorial donations may be made to the Salvation Army or to a charity of your choice.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Martha Chellew, please visit our flower store.


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