Stella Violet Dyck Matthews, 97, Woodstock, died Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, at Valley Hi Nursing Home.

She was born Nov. 17, 1919, the oldest daughter of Roman and Catherine (Barlik) Chimleski in Bayonne, N.J.

She graduated from Sherman Business School March 21, 1938, and worked as an executive secretary and stenographer at various companies in New Jersey. She was in the Naval Reserves during World War II and trained as a Red Cross aide.  She loved the outdoors, especially the ocean, and spent many summers at the Jersey shore. She also loved animals of all kinds and had many pets she considered her companions through her lifetime. She was seldom without a kitten or cat to cuddle.

During the course of her career she met a charming widower, Arnold “Wolff” Jan Dyck, and they were married May 1, 1960. She helped him raise his three young sons, Robert, Brian and Rodney Dyck. They designed and built their dream home, an A-Frame along the Kishwaukee River in Union. They were members of Sacred Heart Church in Marengo for many years.

Wolff died July 7, 1974. After his death, she continued her career and as an executive secretary for Father Tierney at Marian Central High School until her retirement when she worked part time at Adult & Child Therapy Services until her final retirement in June of 1998.

On Aug. 20, 1977, she married Robert (Matt) Matthews, Sr..

She was preceded in death by her parents; a brother, Edmund Chandler; her first husband, “Wolf” Dyck; her second husband, Robert Matthews Sr.; and a stepson, Robert Matthews Jr.

Visitation will be at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 27, at St. Mary Church, Woodstock, until the funeral Mass at 10:30 a.m. Interment will be at Sacred Heart Cemetery, Marengo.

Memorial contributions may be given to Adult & Child Therapy Services, 708 Washington St., Woodstock, IL 60098.

Arrangements were made by Schneider, Leucht, Merwin & Cooney Funeral Home, Woodstock.

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