She was born Feb. 13, 1923, in Litchfield, Ill., to Connie and Minnie Rogers Johnson. She married her beloved Joseph Paul Powers on Aug. 1, 1941, in Lebanon, Missouri. He passed away Nov. 15, 1972.
Lucy is a magnificent example of a life well lived, and her story certainly is one worth telling. Lucille and Joe met at Rutt's Corner, a diner in Litchfield where she worked as a waitress and where he stopped for meals on his route as a truck driver.
Joe recognized a jewel when he saw one and while the food at Rutt's was probably good, it was his appetite for conversation with the red-haired waitress that kept him coming back. He soon asked for her hand in marriage and whisked her away to begin their new life in Chicago. For a small-town girl, life in the city must surely have been daunting. But, as was the case throughout her life, Lucy found happiness by being happy. A simple recipe she shared with everyone.
Lucy and Joe had 10 children and more than 31 years of joy. When Joe died, she still had three children in school, hadn't worked outside of the home in more than 30 years and didn't know how to drive a car. Paralysis and pity may have been options for some, but not for Lou. She enrolled in a drivers education class, passed her test, and found a job.
Before she had a chance to catch her breath, tragedy kicked her in the stomach again. Less than a year after her husband's death, her son was killed in a car accident. It is likely that most people could not have managed such devastation, but Lucille was not most people. Heroically, she rallied strength from some place few can see and led her family through the darkness.
Through her example, she proved that leadership is not only displayed on ball fields and in board rooms, but also at the breakfast table and in the bedrooms of frightened children. Her life demonstrates how one can find triumph over tragedy, serve defeat to difficulties, extol excellence in everyday events and celebrate success with hugs and a kiss on the forehead.
Everyone who met Lucille found a gentle, giving woman who was always more concerned with the needs of others than she was with her own. She was a welcoming presence as a checker at the Scott City IGA grocery store until her retirement in 1997.
Waiting to greet Lucille in heaven are her parents and husband; a son, Michael; three daughters Joan, Jane, and Karen; a grandson, Bobby; three sisters, Geneva, Genevieve, and Helen; and a brother, Tommy.
She is survived by children, Bob (Vickie) Powers of Springfield, Ill., Richard (Irene) Powers of Little Rock, Ark., Jennifer (Jim) Noel of Jackson, Tom (Sara) Powers of Scott City, Laurie Powers of Scott City, Tedd (Laura) Powers of Cape Girardeau, Laura Poole of Scott City; grandchildren, Lisa Severson and Wendy Sinn; Randy Powers, Todd Michael Powers, Aimee Powers, Joe Powers and Michael Dale Powers; David Roth and Wayne Roth; Stacie Kranzley, Richard Todd Powers, and Michael Ryan Powers; Julie Brant and Kaci Guttilla; Andy Powers and Megan Sullins; 33 great-grandchildren, including Ethan Brant of Scott City; and three great-great-grandchildren.
Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Thursday at Amick-Burnett Funeral Home in Scott City.
The funeral will be at 11 a.m. Friday at the funeral home, with the Rev. Sam Roethemeyer officiating. Graveside service will be at 3 p.m. Friday at SS. Peter and Paul Cemetery in Collinsville, Ill.