Bruce Berens

May 12, 1920 ~ June 7, 2020 (age 100)


Bruce A. Berens, age 100 of Glen Ellyn, passed away on June 7, 2020. Born May 12, 1920 in Akron, OH. Bruce is the loving husband of the late Shirley McGrath Berens (married 63 years), loving father of Barbara (Arnold) Pagniucci, Marianne (Jeffrey) Huml, Paul (Laura) Berens, Raymond (Ann) Berens, Therese (Michael) Hanneman, and the late Nancy, late Paul and the late Therese; dear grandfather of Michael and Lisa Pagniucci, Catherine, Colleen and the late Annmarie Huml, Jaime, Alex and David Hanneman, Kevin and Katie Berens, and Michael and Jackie Berens; caring great-grandfather of  Lila & Lana Pagniucci and Cecilia & Samuel Hennig; fond brother of Robert, Carol Dalton, Jerrie McGreal, late Val Dooley, late Jean Skinkis, late Phil and late Raymond, and uncle of dozens of nieces & nephews. Bruce was Jesuit-educated and graduated from St. Ignatius grade school (1933), Loyola Academy high school (1937), and  Loyola University (1941), all in the same Rogers Park neighborhood where he grew up as the oldest of 8 children during the Great Depression.  He served in the Army in WWII (Pacific duty) for 4 years after college. After the war, he enjoyed a 38-year career with Sears Roebuck & Co, mainly as a merchandise buyer. On Sundays for decades he served as a lector at Mass at Ascension Catholic Church in Oak Park, where he and Shirley raised the family. He and Shirley had at least one child in attendance at Ascension School for 24 straight years, 1953-1977. He always helped with homework, and each of his 5 children went on to achieve one or more post-graduate degrees or certifications.  His favorite hobbies were working as a weekend carpenter on his Oak Park house, teaching his children sports in the backyard and alley, especially his own favorite -- baseball, cheering on the Chicago Cubs, and being “always there when needed” for his wife, children and grandchildren. He loved kids and was a friend to the kids in the neighborhood. He enjoyed great health over 100 years, and spent only 1 night in a hospital. As he neared his passing, he stated that he believed his life could not have gone better.  Visitation will be at Leonard Memorial Funeral Home, 565 Duane St, Glen Ellyn IL, on Friday June 19, 4-8pm.  Funeral Mass will be for members of the immediate family at St. Petronille Church, in Glen Ellyn, Saturday June 20 at 10:00am. Interment will be in Mount Carmel Cemetery, Hillside, IL. In lieu of flowers, donations to Loyola University at are appreciated. 


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June 19, 2020

4:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Leonard Memorial Funeral Home & Cremations
565 Duane Street
Glen Ellyn, IL 60137

Funeral Mass
June 20, 2020

10:00 AM
St. Petronille Church


Mount Carmel Cemetery

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