Gloria Morris, 78, of Rockford, IL born August 11, 1942, passed away in Leesburg, FL, Friday, April 23, 2021. She was the loving, devoted daughter of Milo John Hackman and Helen (Ebens) Hackman. She was married to Marvin Paul Morris on February 14, 1959. Together they had three children and later divorced in 1977.
For many years, Gloria worked as an accountant and office manager for her family’s business, Rockford Drive Shaft, working alongside her Mother, Helen for many of those years. She was a member of Redeemer Lutheran Church. She volunteered at Redeemer with the Ladies Aid Society; helping make meals for weddings, funerals, special events and also helped in their kitchen serving. At Redeemer she also volunteered as a coordinator for many of their annual Mother and Daughter Banquets.
Growing up in the midst of WW2, the Korean War and later in adulthood, the Vietnam War, Gloria held much respect for those that served in the military including her uncles, brother, grandson, and a multitude of friends. She was the wife of a Rockford Policeman (Marvin Morris) and greatly appreciated those in the front lines protecting and serving. She held a volunteer officer position at the V.F.W in Rockford, IL as well as running the kitchen and selling tickets during their Bingo events. She was an active volunteer who was willing to help in many capacities including: making gift baskets for raffle to help raise funds for this organization, making countless cakes for the Bingo events, participating in Trunk or Treat, and the Buddy Poppy fundraiser, as well as welcoming home the military men and women at the airport. She had great love, compassion and generosity for others. She had a true heart made of gold and her selflessness made her shine like a bright light to so many. She sacrificed having material things in her life for the benefit of others including taking in two foster children who she considered her special grandkids. For many years, she was a caregiver to her sister who was unable to live on her own. She had the biggest heart for others and a strong devotion to her almighty God who gave her strength to face life’s challenges. She was a bright light and always had a way of comforting others and making them feel so very special. She truly did the Lord’s work on this earth. As one of our family members wisely and recently stated, “She was the glue that held this family together.” We are blessed that she had great faith and is truly at peace with our almighty God and Father. We however will truly miss her, and her leaving has left a huge whole in the hearts of so many who deeply love her. She will never be forgotten since she has imprinted on us her love, her examples of how to live and her wisdom.
Gloria was very talented and loved to share her talents as it related to helping or making others’ lives better and sharing fellowship with others. Her hobbies included bowling, baking, (she was especially known for making the best homemade fudge), hosting many family events including so many memorable backyard gatherings and fun get-a-ways to a special place on Fish Lake, WI, playing countless games of dice, collecting meaningful life quotes from the newspaper (and later Facebook), always stopping to appreciate life’s little things. She was forever thankful for each of God’s precious gifts he so mercifully bestowed on her. She also loved her family greatly and was more than there every step of the way to pick up the pieces no matter what happened. She was our “mother lion” and tried desperately to “protect her cubs” often a bit too much at her own expense. She held her family closest to her heart! She had great artistic ability making the cutest cakes for her family and countless, gorgeous gift baskets & flower arrangements she so loved to make special! She loved to assemble sweet Trick or Treat bags each year and so enjoyed seeing all the kids light up when she gave them a bag full of treats and surprises. She was an endless giver in every way that made life brighter for others.
Gloria Morris is survived by her Brother Roger Hackman (Marlene Diamond Hackman) of Winnebago, IL; Sister Carol Hackman Sweeney of Leesburg, FL; and former Sister-in-Law Kathleen Murphy; Daughters Alesia Waybright of Leesburg, FL); Kristine Kliebhan (Lawrence Kliebhan) of Knoxville, TN; her former husbands James Reeverts (Rockford, IL); Randy Short (Pennsylvania); Step-Daughter Miranda Kiep; Daughter in Law Jeanie Middleton Rivera; 7 Grandchildren Michael Morris, Jr (Staci Antoine); Granddaughter in Law Lynn James; Alesia Morris Kilbarger (Jon Kilbarger); Deanna Middleton Espinosa (Benjamin Vander Roest) all of Rockford, IL; Matthew Waybright and Andrea Waybright Price (Brandon Price) both of Summerfield, FL and Ellen Kliebhan of Knoxville, TN and Aidan Kliebhan of Atlanta, GA, Foster Grandchildren Mariah Paladino (& son, Jayden Medrano) of Rockford, IL and Devin Paladino (Tampa, FL); 12 Great Grandchildren: Erik, Aaron, Leia, Lydia, Lukas, Emilee, Drake, Alexis, Rylee, Tommy, Brandon & Elias; and also many other family members and special friends, and like a sister and dear friend, Sandra Elliott Roberts and her sons Geoff & Kevin Elliott and their families.
Gloria was predeceased by: Parents: Milo and Helen (Ebens) Hackman; her Childrens’ Father and Former Husband, Marvin Morris; Son Michael Paul Morris; Step-daughter Jessica Short; Brother in law Jack Sweeney and several Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins & Friends.
Her wishes were for a very brief, very private viewing by only immediate family & thereafter will follow cremation at Beyers Funeral Home and Crematory in Leesburg, FL. At a later time (date to be determined) a memorial service will hopefully be allowed to take place (with Covid guidelines) in Rockford, IL, following with interment at Arlington Cemetery, Rockford, IL.