Food Culinary 07

Vilia "Vonnie" Sarver

June 24, 1955 ~ August 18, 2021 (age 66)


Vilia Von “Vonnie”, was born in Robinson, Illinois on June 24, 1955 to William Wayne and Patricia Ann Grubb. As a child, her family moved around in Arizona and Illinois where they eventually settled in Urbana. Vonnie attended and graduated from Urbana schools, this is where she met her husband of almost 50 years, John Reid. Her life began on November 12, 1971. Although young, there was not a darn thing her parents were going to do about it, she married John.

Together, they built a home with their own hands, and help from dear family and friends.  Soon after came Woodrow William and Candice Letha. Her children were very fortunate to have her home with them for many years. She was always the school room-mom with the best treats and goodie bags. Although very embarrassing to her own children with her neon socks and cow print shoes, she was the “cool” mom to all the other kids.

She was a talented baker and cook. She could turn any leftover into a delicious casserole. Once her children were older, she took her talents to the Jewel-Osco bakery in Urbana. After many years of hard work and batches of buttercream, she became an accomplished and sought-after cake artist. She served as an assistant manager, traveling trainer and received many awards at Jewel until its closing. When her lifelong friends, David and Lynn Borchers and family opened Auggie’s Restaurant, she went right to work in the kitchen wearing many hats. Once her first grandchild came along, Vonnie decided she just wanted to be a stay at home Granny and for over twenty years, that is exactly what she did.

She had a deep and unique bond with each of her four grandchildren. Joanna David, Kyle Dean, Madelynn Josephine, and Logan VonReid was why she was put on this earth. She often said she wished she had her grandchildren first! Granny provided a safe, loving, lively, loud, imaginative, creative, messy, and musical home-away-from-home for all of them. She allowed them to be exactly who they wanted to be, encouraged them to be silly and not to take things too seriously. “No” was not a word her grandkids often heard, and she was purposely overindulgent; she knew there was not a darn thing her kids could do about it.

Vonnie, an avid reader, devoured anything science fiction and horror, but her favorite genre was trashy romance novels. She once donated well over 2000 books to a local charity. She required sun and water, be it at home by the pool, at a lake or in Cancun with her husband and friends. Thoroughly a “The Walking Dead” fan girl, you always knew what was on her TV.  With her grandkids all grown she was able to fully fuss over John. She took great pride in running her household and taking care of her husband and she did it well. John worked hard so that Vonnie never had to want for anything, she never asked for anything. She got what she wanted out of making others feel happy, safe, and loved. And Vonnie did what she wanted.

August 18, 2021 Vonnie went to sleep in the home she lived in for nearly 50 years, with her husband, where she had raised two strong, independent, accomplished children, four kindhearted, brave and funny grandchildren,  four dogs, a few grand-dogs and sometime during the night peacefully left us; devastatingly, there was not a darn thing we could do about it. She was 66 years young.

Vonnie leaves behind her husband, children, daughter in-law Nicole, and grandchildren. She also leaves behind a great-granddaughter Isabella Louise and great-grandson Finnegan Andrew. Her mother of Casey IL, sisters Katrina McGrath of Louisville, Ky,  Tina Preston of Mesa, Az, brother Patrick Brasier (Kimberly) of Casey, IL., many nieces and nephews, extended family, in-laws, and honorary kids and grandkids. She was preceded in death by her father, mother in-law and father in-law, a special aunt in- law,  Adelaide Maxwell, whom she selflessly provided daily and hospice care for, a niece, and several other close in-laws.

The Sarver’s will receive friends and family at Renner-Wikoff Chapel & Crematory, 1900 South Philo Road, Urbana, IL 61802, on August 28, 2021 from 1-3 PM. Cremation rites have been accorded. Memorials may be made to the Champaign County Humane Society or Hospice Hearts of Champaign. Flowers may be sent to the funeral home.  The family also requests anyone who knew Vonnie, no matter how long it’s been to join us in celebration following the visitation at the Urbana American Legion, Post 71, 107 N Broadway Ave, Urbana, IL 61801

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