Michele Elizabeth (Penning) Garvey, born and raised in Decatur, IL, age 54, lived a joyful, faith-filled life which centered around loving her family and our beautiful Catholic Faith. She was tirelessly devoted to her children and husband, and always seeking a deeper spiritual life for herself and always encouraging the same in others. With her unwavering devotion and strength in the face of adversity battling cancer, she helped bring many to prayer and many toward lives of deeper reflection and love of Jesus Christ. She was the second of four daughters raised by Larry and Beverly Penning who helped create an unbreakable bond of love, happiness, and togetherness among her and her three sisters, affectionately known as "The Sisterhood." This special bond existed with them all her years and was a sustaining force through all good and tough times. She loved working as the part-time assistant to the Director of Religious Education at Blessed Sacrament Parish, serving as a substitute teacher at Blessed Sacrament School in years past, and spending time in prayer and reflection with her weekly prayer groups: Encounter and Walking with Purpose. For 7 years (in the 1990s) she was also a high school science teacher, teaching biology and chemistry at McCauley High School and Sycamore High School. She was a lay member of Regnum Christi, which exists so as to allow more people to know and love Jesus Christ, and to encourage members and their families in their efforts to lead and live joyful, Catholic lives. Michele was a proud graduate of St. Theresa High School in Decatur, IL, and Xavier University in Cincinnati, OH. She mostly enjoyed being a devoted and wonderful mother and wife, attending Xavier men's basketball games, travel, and family gatherings of any kind.
Michele was surrounded in constant prayer and support by family and friends and religious around the world during her illness, and well fortified in the sacraments throughout, for which she and the family will remain eternally grateful. A special thanks and deep gratitude are owed to Fr. Damien Hils, Fr. Augustine Aidoo, Monsignor Daniel Vogelpohl, Deacon Jim Fortner, Deacon Jim Bayne, Fr. Michael Hennigen, Fr. Matthew Summe, the Curia of the Diocese of Covington, Bishop Earl Fernandes of Columbus, OH, Fr. Andrew Gronotte, and the Consecrated Women of Regnum Christi in Cincinnati. Michele received incredible, state of the art, and loving medical care at St. Elizabeth Hospital, Good Samaritan Hospital, and through St. Elizabeth Hospice Care.
Survivors include her devoted husband, John J. Garvey III of Ft. Mitchell; daughter, Caroline Marie Garvey of Denver, CO; sons, John J. “Jack” Garvey IV and Reagan Edward Garvey both of Ft. Mitchell; sisters, Carrie Penning Bush (Terry) of Champagne, IL, Sarah Shupenus of Decator, IL, and Katherine Penning Smith (Chris) of Monticello, IL, sister-in law, Erin Vinci (Tom) of Dublin, OH, brother-in-law, Sean Garvey (Paula), nieces and nephews, Shannon Vinci Richardson of Dublin, OH, Meagan Vinci Neesley of Marysville, OH, Joseph Vinci of Dublin, OH, Cristin Vinci of Dublin, OH, Michael Garvey of Ashville, OH, William Garvey of Ashville, OH, Charles Smith of Monticello, IL, Lewis Smith of Monticello, IL, Ellie Smith of Monticello, IL, Mary Shupenus of Decatur, IL, Andrew Shupenus of Decatur, IL, Elliott Penning Bush of Champaign, IL, and numerous beloved aunts, uncles, and cousins. She was preceded in death by her parents, H. Larry Penning, MD and Beverly Ann Brumaster Penning.
Visitation is on Monday, November 21, from 4:00 to 7:00 PM at Blessed Sacrament Church, 2415 Dixie Highway, Ft. Mitchell. A Holy Rosary will be said at 7:00 PM in the church. Mass of Christian Burial is on Tuesday, November 22, at 12:00 PM also in Blessed Sacrament Church. Internment at St. John's Cemetery, Ft. Mitchell. All are welcome and encouraged to join family and friends for lunch and refreshments at Ft. Mitchell County Club from 1:30 to 5:30 PM, immediately following Mass.