A retired elementary school educator, Caroljean worked for Belleville Public School District 118 for 15 years and Wolf Branch School District 113 for 17 years as a reading specialist and diagnostician. She was proud to have earned a master’s degree in 1984. Caroljean’s love and understanding of children gave her pleasure throughout her lifetime.
In 1954, she started volunteering with children by creating the first summer storytelling program for over 100 children at the Belleville Public Library, under librarian Mr. Kirchgraeber. For 20 years, she presented book reviews/dramatizations as benefits for local church, civic, and school organizations.
In addition to her great love of children and the delivery of stories, Caroljean had years of volunteerism, first as an adolescent and young adult at First Presbyterian Church of Belleville, and then throughout much of her adulthood at St. Paul United Church of Christ, Belleville, IL. Other organizations that benefitted from her commitment and talents included American Association of University Women, Call for Help, Radio Service for the Blind, and Tri Delta Sorority Alumni.
Even as she gave so much of herself to her community, her greatest loves were her family, friends, and faith. Those in her circle were graced by her kindness, loyalty, and caring ways. Her smile and presence were a gift to so many.
Among them where those who preceded her in death, her husband of 65 years, Arthur H. Peters, whom she married December 26, 1953, and who died February 13, 2019; and her parents, Fred H. and Florence L. Spies Zwetschke.
She is survived by her daughter, Julia P. (Glenn) Brichacek of Magnolia, DE;
two sons, Thomas A. (Marka) Peters of New Braunfels, TX, and Douglas F. Peters (Norma Chinido) of O’Fallon, IL,
Norma’s children, Jeff (Anna), Joey, Sara, and Hanna, and Norma’s grandchildren, Olivia, Myla, Judan, Christopher, and Nathan;
three grandchildren, Erin L. Peters, Kyle A. Brichacek, and Elena A. (Luis Santamaria) Brichacek;
two great-grandchildren, Sofia Brichacek and Asher Santamaria;
her brother, F. Thomas (Beverly) Zwetschke of Venice, FL;
a niece, Laura Johnson; a nephew, Bradford (Christina) Zwetschke;
great-nieces and great-nephews; and many other beloved family members, both near and far.
Memorials may be made to First United Presbyterian Church, Belleville, IL. Condolences may be expressed to the family online at www.rennerfh.com.
Visitation: Friends may visit from 4 to 8 p.m. Saturday, January 14, 2023, at George Renner & Sons Funeral Home, Belleville, IL.
Funeral: Private funeral services will be held Sunday, January 15, 2023, at George Renner & Sons Funeral Home, Belleville, IL, with Rev. Robert Dyer officiating. A celebration of life will be held at a later date on Saturday, April 8, 2023.
Burial will be at Valhalla Gardens of Memory, Belleville, IL.