Laura Lynn McElroy

Born: September 26, 1960
Died: June 5, 2018
Visitation: Saturday, June 9, 2018
2:00 pm – 6:30 pm
Michaels Funeral Home, 800 S. Roselle Road, Schaumburg
Funeral Service: Begins at 6:30 pm

Laura Lynn McElroy of Chicago died peacefully in the early morning hours of June 5, 2018, following a courageous battle with cancer. She was 57 years old. Laura left this earth on the same day that her late mother, Sara, was born.

Born September 26, 1960, in Mariemont, Ohio, Laura was raised in southern Indiana until her senior year of high school. Her family then moved to Manila, Philippines, in 1978 where Laura graduated from Manila International High School. Always up for a (sensible) adventure, Laura attended her freshman year of college at Silliman University, Dumaguete on the island of Negros Oriental in the Philippines before graduating from Southern Illinois University in 1983 with a degree in aviation management. Following college, Laura joined her family in Frankfurt, Germany. There she enjoyed family travels, holidays, new friendships, and working at the U.S. Consulate General Passport Office.

As a youth, Laura was active in the Girl Scouts. She loved her senior troop, camping, and trips to Canada and New Orleans. In college, she also enjoyed working at the Girl Scout’s Camp Cedar Point, where she made many lifelong friends.

In 1984, when virtually no women were employed in the airline industry except as clerks or flight attendants, Laura was one of only ten women hired as airline mechanics. Her career with United Airlines spanned thirty-four years. While working at United, Laura met her husband Leon (Lee) McElroy. Laura and Lee married in 1988. They were a team who enjoyed classic movies, music, cooking, restoring their home, working on automobiles, fishing, and keeping up with their beloved Labradors (their children :)) Brandy, Luke, Sabrina, and Samantha.

She was known for her generosity and hospitality and was a kind, warm, and a special friend to many. Laura will be missed by many including her United Airlines colleagues, neighbors, book club members, and her family.

Laura is preceded in death by her mother, Sara Ann (Schroeder) VanMeter; and her aunt, Amanda Houseright. Laura is survived by her husband, Leon McElroy; her father, Larry VanMeter; brother, Chris VanMeter (Tito); sister, Sally Pendleton (Bev Brown); and nephew, Seth Carter Pendleton. Her loving family also includes: her aunt and uncle, Mary Sue and Roy Yeager; cousins, Susan Hackemerer (Kurt) and Stephen Yeager (Debbie); aunt, Harriet Jane Hubka; cousin, Kathy Nicol (Blair); and cousins, Janet Reynolds and Lonnie Houseright (Sheila).

Laura faced her rare and aggressive cancer illness with courage, beauty, and incredible strength. The family wishes to thank friends, Dr. Susan Rausch and Dr. Kathy Murphy; her team of physicians, Dr. Asad Shah, Dr. Mandal, Dr. Dilacio, and Dr. Ahmad; and the caring and skilled nurses and chaplains at Advocate Sherman Hospital in Elgin, Illinois. Also thanks to the community at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary and its president, Rev. Dr. Michael Jinkins, for offering guidance and support throughout this difficult time.

Memorial gifts may be made to: Young at Heart Animal Shelter, Arlington Heights, IL or Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, 1044 Alta Vista Road, Louisville, KY 40205. .

For information please call Michaels at 847-891-2900. We invite you to add a condolence for the family on our website or on the facebook post.