Sharon Marie McKinley

July 29, 1943 - November 14, 2020

Sharon Marie McKinley, 77, a resident of Cape Coral, FL for the past 19 years and formerly of Johnsburg, IL passed away Saturday, November 14, 2020 at HealthPark Hospital in Fort Myers. FL. Sharon was born July 29, 1943 to Mike and Edna Hajek in Chicago, IL.

Sharon grew up in Berwyn, IL and graduated from Morton High School in 1961. She attended Carroll College in Waukesha, WI for a few years before beginning employment at what was then called Atlas Forgings as a secretary.

It was there she met her husband of nearly 52 years, Jim McKinley. Sharon always liked to share the story of how she would take a coffee tray around the office and employees would pay a dime to contribute. Jim was new to the company and wanted a coffee but didn’t have the dime. Sharon “loaned” it to him and forever reminded him, “He owed her ten cents.”

They lived in Chicago and then Brookfield, IL spending weekends with Jim’s boys in Fox Lake, IL. In 1974, they made a big move and bought a home on Columbia Bay in Lake Villa, IL.  

Sharon took on the role of stay at home mom and Executive Salesman’s wife for the next 20 plus years. She got involved with numerous organizations and volunteered at Meals on Wheels and The University of IL Home Extension.

She was very involved in their daughter, Becky’s childhood. Sharon volunteered as a Brownie Troop Leader and a “Room Mom” for many years in the school. During Becky’s high school years as a football manager, Sharon found herself next to all the boys’ moms making game day breakfast and holding special events.

As a salesman’s wife in a time much different than today, Sharon was always by Jim’s side entertaining customers and helping to grow a small forge shop in Cicero, IL into what would become one of the leading forge manufacturers in the country. Sharon spent many evenings at dinners with clients and their wives. Her home was the epicenter for entertaining. Between customers, sales employees, friends and family, the house on Columbia Bay was always hopping.

As Becky got older, Sharon teamed up with her dear friend, Vicki, and started traveling the world. They went to places that, at the time, not many did. She traveled to Antarctica, Greenland, Iceland, and Siberia. Also making a trip to Prague to see where her grandparents once lived.

In 1991, they moved to a different part of the Chain O’ Lakes to Pistakee Bay in Johnsburg, IL. Quickly making friends and getting involved in politics. Sharon often helped with the campaign fundraisers of the local States Attorney and Sheriff.

In 1996, they bought a unique piece of property in Spring Grove, IL and affectionately started calling it, “The Farm.” Sharon found peace and enjoyment in cutting the grass on her John Deere tractor. She loved spending the day riding the tractor and having the dogs follow her.  

Her grass cutting skills came in handy when they bought a summer home in Minocqua, WI with a few acres of grass to mow. Sharon loved feeding the deer up north and watching the hummingbirds on the screened porch. It is also where she began her enjoyment of going to the casino. She was a lucky lady – rarely leaving with less than she came.

In 2001, they moved to southwest Florida eventually making Cape Coral their home and making lots of friends in the community of Cape Harbour. As some of the first residents in their neighborhood, Sharon helped create “Sip and Dip” where neighbors would get together each week for cocktails and appetizers. An event that helped bring people together and build lasting friendships.

As a Southwest Florida Yacht Club member, she went on many boat cruises in the area and took on the role of the Commodore’s wife for a few years. She enjoyed playing Bridge and Mahjong each week and she looked forward to Sunday dinner with their close friends.

She is survived by her beloved husband, James McKinley of Cape Coral; two loving children, Scott McKinley (Jennifer) of Mauston, WI and Becky Monroe (Bill) of Sanibel, FL; her dear brother Michael Hajek of Leesburg, FL, nine grandchildren; Kristin Downing (Jeffrey), Lindsey Hosfield (Dave), Branden McKinley, Megan Galford (Nick), Stephanie McKinley, Abby Iden, Christian McKinley, Molly Iden and Lucy Iden and five great grandchildren; Josee, Oliver, Rubi, Arlo and Greyson. Proceeded in death by her parents and son, James Patrick McKinley.

A Celebration of Life for her will be held in December.

 Memorial contributions in her honor can be made to Shriner’s Hospital, 2900 Rocky Point Dr., Tampa, FL 33607 or CROW (Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife – Sanibel, FL), 3883 Sanibel Captiva Rd., Sanibel, FL 33957.

Mullins Memorial Funeral Home & Cremation Service, Cape Coral, is entrusted with final care.

Guestbook

  1. Carol Hughes Nov 19, 2020 at 2:07 pm

    My condolences to Sharon’s family. I had the privilege of living across the street from them when they lived on Columbia Bay. Sharon was a great neighbor.

  2. Dawn Cynowa Nov 19, 2020 at 2:11 pm

    I was so very fortunate to have known Sharon since 1975 and be a part of so many happy fun times with her. I will miss her reminding me to behave and being her “other daughter.” Also very jealous of her keds shoe collection. Love you Mommy

  3. Joanna Slaght and Family Nov 19, 2020 at 3:28 pm

    What a wonderful tribute to such a wonderful woman!!! I have been so fortunate to have met such a great lady! She always made everyone feel so welcome and loved! And I loved getting her Christmas cards every year! What a dear mom you have Becky!!! Our thoughts prayers and love go out to you and the family at this difficult time.

  4. Janice Hajek Nov 19, 2020 at 3:34 pm

    What a beautiful memorial to my dear cousin Sharon… so many things I didn’t know about her. I will always remember her when we were kids and growing up in Berwyn and Cicero area, Christmases, birthdays etc.. Love you Hycova!!

  5. John and Judy Kays Nov 19, 2020 at 4:31 pm

    Wonderful picture of Sharon and a well written tribute to her life and times. Spent so many fun times with Sharon in our retirement years here in Florida. We will miss those times so much. Profound sympathies and love to all.

  6. Tracie Cain Nov 19, 2020 at 5:15 pm

    Thoughts and prayers to the McKinley family … we were so sad to hear about Sharon’s passing
    We will keep you in our hearts at this very difficult time

  7. Lety Ortiz Nov 19, 2020 at 5:15 pm

    Wow♥️ A wonderful woman inside and out! It was a pleasure to have met her and her amazing family.
    Reading her obituary I do not doubt that she lived a beautiful and happy life… she will be truly missed😓

  8. Adrianus [Andy] &Dorothy Bos Nov 19, 2020 at 5:24 pm

    I am very sorry to hear of the Passing of Sharon we had met them a few times up north with all her friends .My deepest Sympathies.

  9. Judi daly Nov 19, 2020 at 7:19 pm

    Jim and Becky,
    So, so sorry for your loss. What a wonderful and sweet lady, she was my younger friend, of two months. We go back a lot of years, remembering our Bohemian roots, not many of us know those Czech words ( you don’t want to know) . Our pork dumplings and sauerkraut, which I still make, I’m sure you’ll miss.
    What found memories we have of Lake Villa.
    The Daly Family
    Judi, Jeff and Scott

  10. Sally Otto Nov 19, 2020 at 7:48 pm

    What a beautiful memorial. I almost forgot about The Farm by Scot Forge. Our deepest sympathies to your family. ❤
    Sally and Charlie Otto

  11. Russell L. Jones Nov 19, 2020 at 8:21 pm

    My condolences to the McKinley family. I only new Sharon from the Scott Forge family, I am amazed by the full rich life she lived my prayer are with the family.

  12. Berne Clary Nov 20, 2020 at 12:01 am

    Cheryl and I are so saddened to learn of the passing of Sharon. Our warmest of thoughts and prayers are with you all. Berne

  13. Vivian Berg Nov 20, 2020 at 12:12 pm

    My warmest wishes and sympathy for Jim and all of Sharon’s family. She was a great lady.

  14. Susan Noon Nov 20, 2020 at 5:19 pm

    I’m so sorry to learn of Sharon passing
    It has been a long time since we have gotten together. I remember the fun times we had. So glad Judi and Frank Daly introduced me to you two. Sharon
    Just had the ability to make people feel welcome. She will be missed

  15. Cheryl Wojton Nov 21, 2020 at 10:09 am

    I’m so sorry to hear about your loss. Sharon was a great lady who did so much for others.

  16. Peter Jakstas Nov 21, 2020 at 10:52 am

    Jim & Becky words can not express the sorrow you two are going through . May God bless the two of you.

  17. Thomas Musto Nov 21, 2020 at 12:38 pm

    So so very sorry about Sharon. Our condolences go out to the McKinley family during this heartbreaking time. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

  18. Jay and Larry Bennett Nov 22, 2020 at 6:13 pm

    Condolences to Sharon’s family. She was one of the kindest people we ever met. Living in Cape Harbour, playing bridge, calling on new residents, wine and dine on Thursday are all special memories. She will be missed by so many.

  19. Frank and Carol O'Neal Nov 24, 2020 at 8:24 pm

    We have known Sharon and Jim since they moved to Cape Harbour.. Sharon was a great neighbor and friend. She will be missed sorely.
    This is a wonderful tribute.

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