Mary Nan Zimmer, 79 of Charleston, passed away at 7:40 AM Friday, September 23, 2022 in the Sarah Bush Lincoln Health Center in Mattoon, Illinois. She was born March 2, 1943 in Versailles, Indiana the daughter of Lloyd and Katherine (Hall) Thudium. She married Philip R. Zimmer September 15, 1961 in Shawneetown, Illinois, he survives. Mrs. Zimmer was dedicated to the education of young children, both as a teacher and an administrator. Mrs. Zimmer ran a nursery school in Neoga for several years before joining public education. Her philosophy of educating young children was that “play is the work of childhood”. Mrs. Zimmer retired as Principal of Project H.E.L.P (Helping Educate Little People), a free preschool for all program funded by Illinois State Board of Education and administered by Eastern Illinois Area Special Education (EIASE). Mrs. Zimmer was a member of Phi Delta Kappa and the Illinois Association for the Education of Young Children (AEYC). She was recognized by the Illinois general Assembly as 2010 Children’s Champion. Mary Nan was a member of the Charleston High School class of 1961 and enjoyed planning and gathering for reunions. No matter where she ventured out with family, someone always knew Mary Nan and would stop to say hello. She is survived by her husband of 61 years, Philip R. Zimmer of Charleston, Illinois; children, Cynthia L. Foster of Charleston, Illinois, Timothy P. Zimmer (Peggy) of Charleston, Illinois and Christopher M. Zimmer (Kristen) of Bloomington, Illinois; grandchildren Dylan Foster (Katie), Ashley Foster (Austin), Megan Rappleyea (Ben), Tyler Zimmer (Brittany), Katherine Zimmer, David Zimmer and Allison Zimmer; three great grandchildren Emery, Nigel, and Raylan; sister, Jane Ann Thudium of Lafayette, Indiana: Mary Nan was preceded in death by her parents; brother, John Thudium and one infant sister.
Funeral services will be held at 1:00 PM, Thursday, September 29, 2022 in the Swengel - O’Dell Funeral Home in Neoga, Illinois. Visitation will be from 5:00 PM until 7:00 PM, Wednesday, September 28, 2022 also in the funeral home. Entombment will be in the Gaskill Cemetery, in Big Spring Twp. Illinois (northwest of Neoga).
Memorials may be made in her honor to: Project H.E.L.P, 5837 Park Dr, Charleston IL 61920.
Online condolences may be expressed at www.swengel-odell.com.
To send flowers
to the family or plant a tree
in memory of MARY NAN (THUDIUM) ZIMMER, please visit our floral store.