Cecilia C. Allen, 68, of Urbana died Saturday, June 4, 2022, at home surrounded by her family, following a 3-year battle with cancer.
A celebration of her life will be held for her friends and family at a later date.
Ceal was born on March 8, 1954, in Tuscola, the fourth child of James L. Allen and LaVerne Ohley Allen. She married Alan Hettinger in Tuscola on July 13, 1974; they divorced in 1991. She married Roger F. Blakley on August 10, 1996, in Urbana. He survives.
She is also survived by twin daughters Anna (Mark) Moellering of Argyle, TX, and Kate (Brian) Moody of Tuscola; grandchildren Braxton and Elijah Moody, and Madeline and Elizabeth Moellering; stepchildren Deanna (Alan) Zehr of Urbana, Paula (Bryan Lierman) Blakley of Sidney, Roger E. (Sherra) Blakley of Waco, TX, Aerika (Dan) Hutton of Rantoul; sisters Renée (Tom) Hettinger of Tuscola, Michele (Steve) Winkler of West Fork, AR, Camille (Randy) Carlz of Bettendorf, IA, and Gabrielle (Tony) Martin of Champaign; as well as numerous nieces, nephews, and step-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, sister Stefanie Allen, and brothers Kevin Allen and Dyrck Allen.
Education was very important to Ceal. She graduated high school from Sacred Heart Academy in Springfield in 1972. She loved learning and started taking college classes part time when her children were young, eventually earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Sculpture and a Master of Arts in Art Education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a Master of Fine Arts in Sculpture from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.
Art was Ceal’s passion. She and her husband Roger spent their years together creating art in their private studio, collaborating on many pieces. Her artwork can be found around the Champaign-Urbana area, including Meadowbrook Park, the Urbana Free Library, and Black Dog Smoke & Ale House.
Ceal also had a great love for dogs, books, and nature. She encouraged a love of reading in her grandchildren, who have scores of inscribed books from their “Book Grands.” She was a master gardener, an excellent cook, and a generous soul.
Memorials are suggested to the Champaign County Humane Society.
Arrangements were entrusted to Hilligoss Shrader Funeral Home, Tuscola, IL. Online condolences may be shared via hilligossshraderfh.com