Shirley Ann Pletkovich

October 30, 1934July 31, 2018

Shirley Ann Pletkovich 83, of Peoria passed away on Monday July 31, 2018.

She was born to Victor Preston and Alta Lucille (Smith) Hartwell on October 30, 1934 in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

Shirley and her family moved to Peoria in 1943. She attended Columbia and Von Stuben Grade Schools and graduated from Peoria High School in 1952.

Shirley matriculated at Bradley University where she graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in speech communication in 1956. During her studies at Bradley, she was a member of the Sigma Kappa Sorority and served as president of her senior class. Shirley co-hosted The Bradley House Party on WIRL Radio and worked at the station as a commercial writer. She also worked in the Bradley Speech Department.

On August 2, 1958, Shirley married John R Pletkovich in Princeville. Two sons were born to them. The family later resided in Geneseo and Kewanee. Shirley and her husband moved to Peoria in 2001. Over a twenty-five year teaching career, she taught in the Princeville, Geneseo, Orion, and Annawan school systems. At Annawan, she coached girls varsity basketball and later girls middle school basketball.

Since her return to Peoria, Shirley held memberships in the local Daughters of the American Revolution chapter, Peoria County Republican Women, and the United Presbyterian Church. In 2014, Shirley and John joined First Federated Church. She was also a member of various bowling and golf leagues and enjoyed bridge.

In addition to her husband John, Shirley is survived by sons Tim (Melissa) of Peoria, Tom of Dallas, Texas, granddaughters Torie Pletkovich of San Diego, California, Kate (Dan) Schreiber of Alameda, California, and great granddaughter Isabel Schreiber of Alameda, California, sister Sue (Tom) Krebs of Pensacola, Florida, brother Jim (Louita) Hartwell of Champaign, Illinois, three nephews, two nieces, two great nephews and a great niece.

Shirley was preceded in death by her four-legged companion, Dusty.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to PCAPS or the Bradley University Alumni Office.

A Celebration of Life will be held 10:30 am on Saturday, August 11, 2018 at First Federated Church in Peoria. If all guests in attendance would please wear red, white, and blue to honor Shirley’s patriotism, the family would be most appreciative.


  • Victor Preston Hartwell, Father
  • Alta Lucille (Smith) Hartwell, Mother
  • John R. Pletkovich, Husband
  • Tim (Melissa) Pletkovich, Son
  • Tom Pletkovich, Son
  • Torie Pletkovich, Granddaughter
  • Kate (Dan) Schreiber, Granddaughter
  • Isabel Schreiber, Great-Granddaughter
  • Shirley was preceded in death by her four-legged companion, Dusty.

  • Bradley University Alumni Office


  • Celebration of Life Saturday, August 11, 2018

Shirley Ann Pletkovich

have a memory or condolence to add?

Linda (Smith) Stoecker

August 11, 2018

Shirley was a wonderful teacher and a wonderful friend.
My thoughts are with her family.

Barry Ufheil

August 10, 2018

She was the best teacher I had at Annawan no question. I gained a lot of confidence to perform on stage from her guidance and direction. She was absolutely a taskmaster but I appreciated that so much in graduate school. I have to write a lot but she taught me how to write and express my thoughts clearly and correctly...yep still remember all the prepositions after all these years too. Judging by the sentiments I have read on Facebook, it is clear that many others benefited from dedication and commitment. Mrs. Plet will be missed...

Jody (Fowler) Leamen

August 10, 2018

I am so sorry for your loss. I remember Shirley and my mother, Pat Fowler teaching 1st & 2nd grade Sunday school at the First Presbyterian Church in Geneseo....many precious years ago. They made a really good team!! My mother passed away suddenly on April 4 so I know how much this hurts. Your are in my thoughts and prayers. - Jody (Fowler) Leamen

Lois Ann Carson

August 9, 2018

Shirley pulled me from a dangerous sinkhole on the golf course. Her composure and strength made my injuries minimal.
Shirley enlightened any group in which she participated. Her friendly smile came from her big heart. She involved herself in so many activities which benefited all the organizations to which she gave so much of her time. She left a lasting impression on all who knew her. She will be dearly missed.
I send my deepest sympathy to her entire family. Every time I wear red, white and blue, I will know that Shirley is smiling in Heaven.
Sincerely, Lois A. Carson