Sharon Nier

By on September 9, 2009

Sharon Nier, 61, of Elburn, passed away at her home, surrounded by the love and prayers of her family in the early morning hours of Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2009.

She was born Nov. 21, 1947, the daughter of LaVerne “Bud” and Charlene (Wood) Ritchey in Aurora. Sharon grew up in Troxel, Ill. When she was 16, the family moved to the outskirts of Kaneville and later to the old Schleifer place.

Sharon graduated from Kaneland High School with the class of 1966 and began working for Farmer’s Insurance Group. She also helped her parents operate the Elburn Dairy Joy and worked part-time at Gliddon’s Drug Store. In November of 1968, Sharon began what would become a 31-year career at Richardson Electronics, Ltd. Although some predicted she would not last long, her determination and penchant for details moved her up the line through the years from assembly to engineering clerk, to accounting and to executive secretary to the Vice President of Manufacturing before retiring on Dec. 31, 1999, as the senior inventory control clerk.

On March 21, 1970, she was united in marriage to Gene Nier. They began their new life together in a house on South Street in Elburn. It was there they transformed the house into a home and made many improvements and thousands of memories.

Sharon turned their back yard into a virtual haven for a remarkable spectrum of birds, including Orioles, Indigo Buntings, Rose Breasted Grosbeaks, Cardinals, Brown Thrashers, Gold Finches, White Breasted Nuthatches, Hairy and Red Bellied Woodpeckers and many others. She also was fond of caring for her fox or red squirrels, as well as the grey and the little chipmunks for which her backyard was a playground. She knew what they loved to eat and saw that they had a year-round smorgasbord. Sharon’s knowledge of the birds was truly encyclopedic, and she enjoyed imparting that knowledge to her nieces, nephews and friends.

Sharon was a member of the “Women of the Moose” since 1975. She also bowled on mixed and women’s leagues through the 1970s and ‘80s, until her job became too demanding and she had to stop bowling.

Her family includes one step-son, Steven (Stacy) Nier and their children Drew and Katie, of Hale, Mo.; one brother, Ron (April) Ritchey of Elburn; seven nieces and nephews, Dawn (Keith) McLaughlin of Millington, Ill., Kelly Ritchey of Elburn, Dana (Alan) Herra of Elburn, Kim (Mike) Paulus of Sugar Grove, Susan Henne of Kaneville, Jeff (Cara) Nier of Hinckley, and Mark (Bethany) Nier of Chilton, Wis.; her mother-in-law, Doris Nier of Kaneville; one sister-in-law, Karen (Leonard) Heinberg of Kaneville, one brother-in-law, Myron (Lenore) Nier of Hinckley; 16 great-nieces and nephews, Jeff, Kevin, Charles, Kyle and Katie McLaughlin, Charlene, Natasha, and Jackson Herra, Chris and Ben Paulus, Nick and Melanie Henne, and Alex, Kourtney, McKenzie and Harrison Nier; three great-great-niece and nephews, Xavier, Luke and Mylie; and a family of close friends who will never forget her.

She is preceded in death by her husband, Gene; her parents, LaVerne “Bud” and Charlene Ritchey; one sister, Sandra Carroll; and her father-in-law, Arnold Nier.

Following direct cremation, a private family graveside service will be held at Kaneville Cemetery at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, Sharon’s wish was for you to plant something for nature in her memory. A memorial has also been established in her name. Memorials checks may be made to the Sharon Nier Memorial and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119. Tributes and memories may also be forwarded to the family at the same address or through her obituary at