Iryl Elaine Tortorella died peacefully surrounded by her family on August 5, 2021.
She is now finally in the arms of her beloved husband holding our precious sister Adrienne in her lap. Our Dad has waited for her for 52 years. Iryl was born to Ira and Florence Eppler in a farm house in Primrose Nebraska on October 13, 1928. She was the youngest of four children and the only girl. She had no chores on the farm. Her three older brothers did it all. Apparently, she was the “princess” in the family. She was a loving and devoted wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend to all she met. To her, volunteering as a “worker bee” was her favorite hobby. First at the Church, secondly as a girl scout leader and then moved on as a volunteer for the “Ray Graham Association for People.” She advanced herself within that organization to become a member of their Foundation Board, as well as United Way, BOD of the Family Shelter League, making and serving food for the homeless through DuPage PADS, and making over 100 blankets for children within the DCFS system, as well as serving lunch to children who were food insecure at the Glen Ellyn library each summer. For the past 38 years she devoted her volunteering efforts to the Glen Ellyn Chamber of Commerce and the Village of Glen Ellyn. She was a “late bloomer” in the workforce. Her son-in-law Bill opened his own business, “FloorOpedics.” She was the store manager. It was this position that brought her to actively participate in the Glen Ellyn Chamber. She was a “change agent,” a dedicated worker and President of the Chamber in 2009. Due to her hard work and dedication, she was named the Grand Marshall of the 4th of July parade in 2010. Often, people referred to her as the “Matriarch” of Glen Ellyn. Throughout her long and consequential life, Iryl was widely known and admired for her grace, dependability, charm and selflessness. She had an unwavering concern for her family, community and large circle of friends. In all of the organizations she volunteered in, she worked her way up to leadership positions. She was a leader, not a follower. She spoke her mind. You never had to wonder what she was thinking because she told you. She advocated for “righteousness.” If she felt there was wrong, she righted it. Her strong will and wisdom, her voice and ceaseless caring and understanding was infectious. If you saw the “twinkle in her eyes” you knew she had an idea for a new initiative and you had better brace yourself. She will be remembered by all who were fortunate enough to have Iryl touch their lives or prepare a meal for their table, or the table in her home. Very few people can say they hadn’t eaten a special dish, loaf of bread or dessert made by Iryl.
If you knew Iryl you knew, if she had a goal, not to stand in her way. You also knew only too well “Not to mess with her!” You wouldn’t win! If you ask Iryl “How are you?” She will say, “I’m fine.” And now, indeed she is!
Iryl is survived by her beloved daughter Sheryl (Bill) Palicki, beloved son, Curt (Jill) Tortorella, Adored Grandchildren, Paul (Kathy) Palicki, Mark (Vivian) Palicki, Eric (Tiffany StaAna) Tortorella,Nico (Bethany Meyers) Tortorella, Rocco Tortorella, and Hannah (Corbin) Buege, as well as Step Grandchildren Scott (Sarah Rose) Danisi, Kevin (Janet) Danisi. Treasured Great-Grandchildren, Isabela, Jack, Will, MarcAnthony and Alec Palicki, Julien StaAna and Isaac Tortorella. Brother-in-law Tony Tselepis, nephew, Andy (Lisa) Tselepis, and cousin Toni (Chuck) Ruhl and her beloved Kubica family; Eileen McWherter, Mary Jo Kubica, Rick (Kathy) Kubica, Diana Lynn and all of their children and grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Ira and Florence Eppler, her 3 brothers, Eugene, Howard and Willard Eppler, her husband William (Bill) Nicholas Tortorella Jr. Her daughter, Adrienne Ann Tortorella, Sister-in-law Annamarie Tselepis, nephews Tom Eppler and Tony Tselepis Jr and cousin Bill Jewell. Also preceding her in death were beloved and treasured lifelong friends Charles (Chick) and Mary Kubica, Jim Kubica, and Robert (Mac) McWherter.
Services will be held on Saturday, August 14, Leonard Memorial Home, 565 Duane Street, Glen Ellyn IL. Visitation with family from 10 am to 11:00 am. Memorial service begins promptly at 11. Burial is private.
In lieu of flowers please. Donations to be made to Ray Graham Association for People, Lisle IL
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Iryl E (Eppler) Tortorella, please visit our floral store.