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PASSAGES Rebecca J. Ernst

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Rebecca J. Ernst passed away April 28. She was 67.

Becky Ernst was born in the Midwest on Dec. 28, 1951, and moved to Alaska with her parents in the early '60s to begin her adventures. She was always curious and willful and, even at a young age, her dream was to marry a horse! She became an accomplished guitarist and singer, influenced by Joan Baez and Peter, Paul and Mary, participated in theater, fished commercially, built log cabins, homeschooled three children, and traveled with her sons and husband around the United States in an RV.

Becky moved to Chicago in the mid 1990s, enjoying the big crowds and big experiences. She absorbed and exuded the energy from everywhere, loving public transportation, walking and chatting and connecting with everyone she could. Becky's spirit evolved and thrived on new experiences. She was a true Renaissance woman.

Becky opened and managed Serendipity Massage Therapy, at 5301 N. Clark St., for 20 years. She revelled in Andersonville's vibrant community.

With her spouse, Denise, Becky enjoyed a creative, expansive and warm life. They took care of their cherished moms and shared their home with many close friends who became family. Guests were welcome anytime. She and Denise enjoyed rich conversations, cooking, concerts, theater, gardening, birds, and travel. They relished in the Lake Michigan beaches, a centering piece of their life.

Becky lived with breast cancer from 1992. She had years of cancer-free living until 2011, when metastatic cancer appeared. She never focused on dying, always hopeful for a cure, and lived each day with joy and determination.

Becky's warm smile and piercing eyes made you feel immediately comfortable, peaceful, and energized. Becky Ernst, still peaceful, passed away at her home in Chicago surrounded by her spouse, children, sister and nieces and nephews.

She is survived by her spouse, Denise Ellis; her sons Zach ( Becky ), Eli, ( Shannon ) and Abe Porter; her grandchildren Braeden, Sadie, Emily, Eden and Madeline; her sister RoseMarie ( Jerry ) and brothers Randy ( Carol ), Robbie ( Q ); sisters-in-law Cindy ( Bob ) and Kathy; brother-in-law Carl; nieces and nephews Peter, Amy, Seth, Matt, Jenny, Heidi, Tyler, Logan, Annaleah, Devin, Aaron, Beth, Ellie, Melinda, Dean and Bradley; and their families. She was preceded in death by her father Raymond, mother Sally, brothers Rick and Butch, and sister Ruth.

Join us for a celebration of Becky's rich life at Unity in Chicago, 1925 W. Thome Ave., on Saturay, Aug. 24, at 3 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation in memory of Rebecca Ernst at .

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