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Christine Whelan

April 3, 1933 April 8, 2013
Christine Whelan
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Obituary for Christine Whelan

Christine Reardon Whelan, a resident of Milford for over fifty years, went to be with the Lord on April 8, 2013 in the care of her sons and daughters. She celebrated her 80th birthday with her family five days prior to her death.

Born on April 3, 1933 in Detroit, Christine was the third of nine children born to William Dennis and Mary Olive Reardon. She grew up in the Detroit area and worked at Hudson�s in downtown after graduating from Walled Lake High School, where she excelled in swimming and basketball.

On December 2 of 1952, Christine married Harry Whelan while he was home on furlough from the Korean War. Upon his return, they moved to California with Christine�s family and had the first five of their ten children. In 1960, they returned to Milford, Michigan, where the younger half of the family was born and raised.

Christine�s heart and soul was her large, close-knit family. She often woke her children for school with the song, �Good morning to you, Good morning to you; we�re all in our places, with bright, shining faces. This is the way to start a new day.�

Chris Whelan loved music. She wrote her own song lyrics and played piano by ear and regaled family, friends and strangers alike with her impromptu performances which she fashioned to fit all of life�s contingencies, joys and sorrows, loves and grief. Nothing pleased her more than the many wonderful evenings spent around the family fire in the back yard singing, playing music and telling stories. She delighted in teaching her children the songs of her favorite Broadway musicals and presenting �shows� for the neighborhood. In 1981, she was so proud when all ten of her children were featured in a holiday concert at the Renaissance Center in downtown Detroit.

While raising her children, Christine managed all of the Milford newspaper boys for the Detroit Free Press for many years, getting up at 4 am to deliver the papers before the school day started. She also worked nights at �Sonny�s,� where she enjoyed the piano bar, singing with all of her guests. In 1980, Christine earned a licensed medical assistant certificate, which allowed her to �mother� many people through illness and death. She had a gift of empathy that enabled her to accompany families through intimate, difficult life experiences with grace, wisdom and joy. She was the �Hostess with the Mostess� at a local restaurant in her later years, where she greeted customers with a smile and a song.

A woman of deep and abiding faith in God�s love and the power of prayer, Christine was sustained through many trials, her faith emboldening the faith of all she encountered. She prayed daily for the wellbeing of her children, friends and people in need and was, in her cheerful and compassionate care of others, an incarnation of God�s mandate to �love one another.�

Preceded in death by her son, Michael, her two grandchildren Crystal and William Buck Whelan, and her sister, Sr. Margaret Ann Reardon, O.P., Christine Whelan is survived by her children Kathleen, William, Joseph (Melissa), Ann (Ron) Barnette, Patricia (Brian) Bickle, Daniel (Maggie), Matthew (Lisa), James (Maureen) and Theresa (Kris) Arocha, nineteen grandchildren and four great-grandchildren and a wide circle of extended family and devoted friends who join with her family in mourning the death of this dear woman while giving thanks to God for her life among them.

Funeral services will be held at Lynch & Sons Funeral Home, 404 E. Liberty in Milford on Wednesday, April 10, at 10 AM. Burial will follow at Milford Memorial Cemetery. Friends may visit at the funeral home on Tuesday from 3-9PM.

For further information phone 248-684-6645.

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