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Denise A. Ford
March 18, 1952 ~ August 27, 2023 (age 71) 71 Years Old
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Denise Ann Ford, 71, of Sparta, Wisconsin, passed away peacefully on August 27th, 2023 with loved ones by her side after a courageous battle with cancer. She was born in Chicago, IL, to John and Rose Stokes on March 18th, 1952. She grew up in Wheaton, IL with her sister, Deborah.
Denise graduated from Wheaton Central High School in 1970, in Wheaton, IL. She went on to earn an Associates Degree in Fashion Design from the College of DuPage, in Glen Ellyn, IL. Denise married Michael Ford on August 23rd, 1980, and went on to have two sons; William (Bill) and Travis. They raised their sons in Elburn, IL until settling in rural Sparta.
Denise worked at Mayo Hospital in Sparta, WI, in the Medical Records Department until paper files became electronic. She then transitioned to a Receptionist and Patient Liaison until her retirement at the age of 65. Denise was also a familiar face at the Monkey’s Roost, in Melrose, WI, where she waitressed from the time she moved to Sparta until her cancer diagnosis in early 2022. She truly enjoyed both of her places of employment and was grateful for the many friendships she developed over the years.
Denise enjoyed spending quality time with her family. She enjoyed gardening, feeding and watching birds, playing cribbage, cooking, knitting, word searches, watching her favorite sports and spending time outside. She was very creative and could do anything she put her mind to. She also had a special place in her heart for her many canine companions.
Denise stayed true to herself throughout her cancer journey. She demanded independence, cracked random jokes, embraced the highs and lows, and took on everything with a smile. She will be dearly missed by her family and friends.
Denise is survived by her sons, Bill (Beth) Ford of Sparta, WI and Travis (Amy) Ford of West Bend, WI; grandchildren, Claire, Brayden and Declan; sister, Deborah (Andy) Velez; niece, Nycol (Keith) Velez; and former husband, Michael Ford.
Denise was preceded in death by her parents, John and Rose Stokes; in-laws, Jim and Kay Ford.
A sincere thank you goes out to Dr. Menn and his team at the Neighborhood Family Clinic, Dr. Harmon and his team at Gundersen Lutheran Oncology, Dr. Conway and his team at Gundersen Lutheran Radiation Oncology, Gundersen Lutheran Neurology, Gundersen Lutheran Rehabilitation (Occupational and Physical Therapies) and Dr. Woodward and the staff at Mayo Hospital Sparta for the amazing care and compassion that was provided to Denise and her family.
Per Denise’s wishes there will be no services. If you would like to send a card, please mail it to Lanham-Schanhofer Funeral Home and Cremation, Sparta. All monetary gifts will be donated to the All Abilities Playground to be built in Sparta in honor of Denise. Online condolences may be offered at www.schanhoferfh.com.
Lanham-Schanhofer Funeral Home and Cremation, Sparta, is assisting the family with arrangements.