Harriet McLaughlin Rose, 85, of Mahomet, formerly of Charleston, Illinois, passed away on Monday, August 5, 2019. She was born to Harry and Nina (Lindsay) McLaughlin on February 23, 1934 in Sparta, IL. They preceded her in death as did her beloved sister, Nellie Wineland. Harriet is survived by a very grateful son, Chapin (Camille) Rose; grandchildren: Jack, Annie, Kira, and Grace; beloved sister, Mabelle Wexler, brother-in-law Gene Wineland; nephews, Tom (Audrey) Wineland, Tom Hirte; and niece, Stacy Given. She is also survived by many other Mclaughlin and Lindsay relatives.
Harriet loved her Randolph County roots and was a proud member of the Sparta band, a Sparta cheerleader, and was nominated to the homecoming court as a freshman. After moving to Fairfield, Illinois to finish high school, she was in the band, the cheerleading captain, and was awarded the 4-H Outstanding member award for the state of Illinois which earned her a trip to the national 4-H convention. She also was instrumental in creating the Fairfield water safety lifeguarding program that still continues.
Harriet was very proud to attend the University of Illinois where she was a member of the Pi Beta Phi Sorority, was on the women’s synchronized swimming team, and was nominated for Homecoming Queen as a Freshman.
She then entered into a long career in higher education, starting her career at the University of Michigan, before becoming the assistant to the Dean of MacMurray College in Jacksonville, Illinois – a post she held for about half of her career. In Jacksonville, she also developed a life-long passion for tennis and was known to drop everything to watch a grand slam final.
Along the way, as a single-mom, she returned to school, completing a bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois-Springfield and a master’s degree in business administration. In 1986 she began working as an administrative director at Eastern Illinois University where she retired in 2002.
During her Charleston years, she was a proud member of the OBS ladies club, taught adjunct business classes at Lake Land College, and was a member of the First Presbyterian Church.
Harriet was thoroughly knowledgeable on classical French antiques and had an extremely keen eye for decorating, and for all things fashion. She also loved the arts, particularly art museums and Broadway shows.
Her other passion was anything related to the news and current events. A lifelong Republican, she was the chair of the Morgan County, Illinois, Republican Women during the Cold War. She traveled extensively during this time period of her life including a trip to Russia, as a guest of the Deputy US Ambassador to the Soviet Union.
In retirement she enjoyed attending the U of I’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute’s classes on current events and writing. The latter led to several years of research and composing a book to her family, “My Southern Illinois Heritage. A Memoir”. She attended many Illinois Alumni Association and Eastern Illinois work alumni events. She very much enjoyed and loved her grandchildren to whom she will forever be known as “HaHa”.
She earnestly believed that anyone could do anything they put their mind to - if they were willing to work for it.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to First Presbyterian Church, Charleston, Illinois, the Cornbelt Fire Department, Mahomet, Illinois, or the University of Illinois Alumni Association.
A celebration of life service will be held in Harriet’s honor at 5pm on Sunday, August 11, 2019 at Sunset Funeral Home and Cremation Center in Champaign, Illinois 710 N Neil St. Champaign, Illinois 61820. Visitation will be held prior from 3:30pm-5pm at the funeral home. Final resting place will be Coulterville City Cemetery. Please join Harriet’s family in sharing memories, photos, and videos on her tribute wall at sunsetfuneralhome.com.