Marsh Funeral Home


Catherine Anne Liginski

March 27, 1959February 19, 2021
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Our "beautific" Catherine Anne (Schmidt) Liginski, 61, from Grayslake Illinois, went to heaven on February 19, 2021.

Holding her hands, by her side were her "two Bobs." Loving husband of 19 years, Bob Jr. and the joy of her life, their "miracle baby" Bobby--now 17--who she now dotes on from above.

She was born in Chicago, IL to her beloved parents, William (Bill) Schmidt and Fern (Hart) Schmidt. She has a sister/best friend, Carrie Trafton and two brothers, Bill and Dan Schmidt.

Cathy had a rich life full of wonderful achievements--but the greatest of all of them was her son Bobby--her "lovey buggy". He was (and still is) her everything. He made her so incredibly proud everyday.

She had the loudest cheers at all his basketball games. She was known to argue with dads on opposing teams from time to time. She especially loved when the whole family attended to cheer Bobby on. Grandpa Bill, Grandmas Fernie and Peggy---and all the uncles, aunts and cousins and friends. She and her husband would hide in-between games so that no one could wrangle them into score-keeping duties!

In the summer (her favorite season) she could often be seen playing a pick-up game of basketball with Bobby in the driveway. She boasted of her ball handling skills (because she played a season in her college sorority--Alpha Omicron Pi--on the worst team). In actuality, her clumsy "ball-handling" skills were only matched by her equally hilarious dancing skills. Bobby could barely play through the laughter. She still insisted that she was a talented player and dancer though.

She spent her last days with Bobby talking about life, school, her wishes for him and laughing while he put together legos by her side. When she began to have trouble talking, she communicated through her smile. The same smile that lit up every room she was in. The smile that made everyone feel a warm welcome. The beautiful smile that made us all love her. She smiled to the very end.

Cathy has many friends who loved her. Old friends, and new life-long friends she met and embraced through Bob and later, Bobby. She loved going out to different restaurants, Chicago team games, city festivals or home parties with all of them. She did not like "escape rooms" however...or anything outside if it was too cold!

Because of her experiences with cancer, she was always giving back to those touched by the disease. She volunteered with an organization where she could council newly diagnosed women through their journey. She attended many American Cancer Society Relay for Life events where she once co-chaired the event.

She created "Little Hope" dolls that she intended to use the profits from to donate to cancer causes. But she kept just giving them away to those in need of hope instead.

She shared her cancer journey in the 2010 documentary, Life In a Day and again in Life in a Day: Then and Now. People at all the screenings in the U.S., Berlin and London were so moved by her contribution that they hugged her and offered prayers when they met her during press travels. This was probably her most favorite silver lining from her too many cancer journeys. She got to release her inner diva and glamorously walk the red carpets in outfits that she proudly pieced together and accessorized from Target clearance racks.

Last, she took joy in spending time with her "smitten" husband (never use the word "hubby"). They did everything together; Dunn-hunting at Home Goods (don't ask), going out for dinner and drinks, flea markets, driving around with coffee and a muffin on a Saturday morning and (of course) "beer-thirty" after a long day. They were (and still are) each other's "favorite friends". Their love could never be broken by cancer or death. It was just made stronger, more pure and eternal.

It's truly impossible to capture this beautiful woman in a few paragraphs. She was one-of-a-kind. Irreplaceable. Smart. Funny. Sarcastically quick-witted, sometimes crabby, but she loved people and life---and lived to the fullest in her short time.

And she will live on forever in our hearts--and in the memory of her infectious laugh and that huge smile--until we see her again in heaven.

A visitation for Catherine will be held Saturday, February 27, 2021 from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM at Marsh Funeral Home, 305 N Cemetery Rd, Gurnee, IL.

In consideration of the safety of our guests and associates, Marsh Funeral Home will adhere to the current gathering restrictions in the state of Illinois, which allow 50 or fewer guests at services. Proper social distancing must be practiced and all guests will be required to wear face masks at all times. Thank you for your cooperation.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the Liginski family.


27 February


1:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Marsh Funeral Home

Gurnee, IL


Catherine Anne Liginski

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Nancy Sorensen

February 26, 2021

I have so much to say I do not even know where to begin. First, Mrs. Schmidt, Carrie, Billy, Danny, Bob, and Bobby you are all in my thoughts and prayers. Cathy and I grew up together --- we learned to ride bikes together, walked to school together (Bobby, when the fifth graders would throw snowballs at us your Mom insisted that we throw back instead of running away), played dolls together (Bobby, your Mom made fabulous condos for our Barbie's complete with interior designs), we got stuck on metal fences together in the winter, spent the Blizzard of '67 in the warmth of her family room, went to block parties together, the little store, walked to Zayre's, listened to Sonny and Cher together, dealt with crooked hair cuts (me not Cathy but she tried to fix it for me), and much much more. Most of all I will forever remember Cathy's kindness, infectious laugh, and unwavering strength as she supported me through the loss of my Dad. Cathy will be close to my heart forever. God Bless. All my love, Nancy

Angie Cevallos

February 24, 2021

I worked at Hewitt Associates and that's where I met Cathy. She was fun-loving and very funny. She was a joy to be around. May your light shine upon your loved ones and may be the angels greet you.
My sincere sympathy to Bob, her son and the family. May she rest in peace.

Eric Steffens

February 23, 2021

Cathy was so generous and kind. I will always cherish the New Year's Eve parties she hosted and made so much fun. Her smile was so infectious and the genuine joy you could feel behind it. One time we were talking about the show 30 Something and I thought it was available to watch online and I was wrong. I felt so bad that as soon as it was available a year or two later, I immediately bought it and sent it as a surprise to her because I was so upset that I might have disappointed her when we originally discussed it. She was so appreciative and gracious about it just felt so right and satisfying to make her happy and laughing and course, smiling.

Michelle Kelly

February 23, 2021

Cathy was a great friend who I’ll miss everyday. The fiercest mama bear to her Bobby. Many laughs in the bleachers at basketball games and backyard get togethers. Every time I mow the lawn I’ll think of her! Best smile ever!
Thank you for being my friend Cathy !

Liz Peters

February 23, 2021

Cathy, I feel blessed to have had the opportunity to work with you so many years ago and enjoy all the good times we shared . Your laughter, smile and love of life will live on through all of us who knew you. May you rest in peace.

Kathy Cacioppo

February 22, 2021

Cathy was an incredible wife, mother, sister, aunt and friend too many. Cathy had a wonderful gift of understanding people and always wanted to make sure that everyone around her was okay.

There are so many fun memories including a Prince cover band concert, basketball games and many dinners and glasses of wine. Her smile and laughter were so engaging that even if you were down, Cathy would pick you up and always make you feel better. She knew that life is a gift and we need to cherish all those we love. We are honored to call Cathy our friend. She will be dearly missed but never forgotten.

Sandra Radlein

February 22, 2021

Cathy, you always had a wonderful sense of humor. So glad I got to meet you.

Rick & Joyce Pedersen

February 22, 2021

We are neighbors down the street.

Cathy had the most wonderful smile & attitude. When I would ask she always said she was doing well. Strong special lady.

I pray for God’s healing, peace & love for her family.

Greg Martin

February 21, 2021

As Cathy and I said to each other the last time we visited, we were best of friends for forty years. Way too many memories to put here. Way too much love to express with words. Feelings, feelings, feelings. Godspeed, Cathy. I’ll love and miss you forever.

Lisa Wiederin

February 21, 2021

There are so many wonderful memories , Halloween parties, pool parties, bon fires a mile high, driveway parties, skunk hunts, late afternoon happy hours, we cant pick just one. A beautiful smile, a beautiful person, friend and neighbor, now an angel watching over us, most of all to make sure we fix the fence!!!! A very special person whom will be missed every day, Lisa and Jim