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Isabel Baumann de Pardo , Age: 99
April 07, 1920 -- March 09, 2020

Isabel (Chava) meaning “God's promise”, 99, died Monday, March 9, 2020 just 27 days short of her 100th birthday in her home of 31 years due to complications related to her dementia. She was cared for, in her home for 15 years (M -F) by her wonderful caregiver, Estrella Arreola. Family cared for her on the weekends.
 
She was preceded in death by her spouse, Werner Baumann (Bern, Switzerland) in 2015 and by her son Charlie (Missoula, MT), and her daughter Ida Mollenhauer (Evanston, IL) in 2014.
 
She is survived by her son Walt Baumann and domestic partner Cheryl Arvio, daughters Isabel De Ram and Mariann Baumann, daughter-in-law Linda Baumann, son-in-law Art Mollenhauer, granddaughters Becky Baumann, Megan Pfaff (Matt), grandsons, Kevin Baumann (Sarah), Brian Baumann, Christopher Bauman (Abi) and Kyle De Ram and 9 great-grandchildren; Bailie, Charlie, Dylan, Gabriel, Kaylee, Kingsley, Morgan, Riley and Rory.
 
Isabel was born in Bogota, Colombia April 7,1920 to Ana Gonzalez and Vicente Pardo. Baby sister to Manuel, Carlos, Eduardo, Enrique, Ignacio, Rosita, Emita (who became a cloistered nun) Ana Cecilia (who died in infancy) & Cecilia. Her favorite subjects were, Reading, Spelling and Grammar because she had a very good memory. Her favorite singer was Carlos Gardel a French Argentine singer, songwriter, composer and actor, and the most prominent figure in the history of tango. Favorite pass times as a child were going to the park, board and card games and bingo. She was given a book for her communion, Life of a Saint which she read over and over.
 
As an adult, she lived with her sister Cecilia in an apartment in Chapinero until her marriage in 1948. She met the Big W aka Werner, her husband, while working for the Empresa de los Pradilla, where she was employed as a secretary/bookkeeper. They resided in Fontibon where her in-laws Willy & Dalida Baumann lived.
Willy had built a home for the newlyweds. They remained there until Walt was born. Then moved back to Bogota so that she would be closer to her family.
 
By 1956, the family had 3 more additions, a son, Charlie and two daughters, Isabel and Mariann. The family left Bogota, emigrating to the United States and took up residence in Muscatine, IA. A third daughter, Ida, was born in Chicago in 1959.
Throughout her life, her passion was her children and their children, unselfishly giving of her support and love. She studiously cut articles of interest for us and exercised regularly. She never learned to drive and when not with our dad, she walked or took the bus. 
 
Later, she enjoyed the benefits of physical therapy which allowed her to use her walker and the freedom it afforded her as recently as a few months ago. She smiled with a sense of accomplishment as she glided along for even brief periods.     
Through many ups and downs of her 15-year journey with dementia she maintained her sense of humor. 
She lived with our father, a 10-year stroke survivor, who when he could no longer get around independently, would sit on the couch working his Sudoku puzzles, watch selected TV shows and nap. Our mom jokingly called his patch on the couch “His Throne”. 
When our father passed away in 2014, she began to ask where he was. His death was explained one night but although she initially understood, she began to ask again about his whereabouts, so we began to say that he was travelling. This would temporarily satisfy her as she could still remember that he had often traveled internationally for work.
But she was becoming silently suspicious of our explanation. It didn’t make sense to her that he was always travelling so one day, she reasoned her own explanation and said, “Your father must have another family.” She would ask if we had seen his new apartment where her must be living since, he was not at home.
Estrellla, her caregiver, would insist, “No YOU are the wife.”
 
She would neatly park her walker, with some effort, at the foot of her bed before retiring.  She crossed her ankles when sitting and continued to ask if her grown children had enough money. Food became a source of immense enjoyment to her and she would open her eyes wide, smile broadly, thank us and exclaim how great it all looked, even if it was a breakfast of scrambled eggs, toast and fruit.
 
Even in an impaired state, she would chide us if we did not offer any guests some refreshment.
Through all her struggles she remained kind and sweet always trying to do what she could as her abilities waned. She kept going and kept thinking of others until her final stages.
 
Her loving heart, strength of character, sense of humor and sweet disposition shone through always. 
We celebrate the life of a strong and resilient, immigrant women who along with our dad, raised us with unerring love in three countries. We can only hope that some of her best traits find reflection in our own lives.
We are indebted to Estrella, my parent’s caregiver, for her caring and tireless service to our parents and our family.
 
In Lieu of flowers the family of Isabel Baumann ask that you donate to the Alzheimer's Association, the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's Care, Support and Research. We have created a donation tribute page in her memory that can be found by doing the following
1) Visit www.alz.org/tribute 2) In the top right corner click "Find a tribute fund Page" 3) Search "Isabel Baumann" and click on her page to donate.
Thank you for your thoughts and prayers during this time.


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Olson Burke-Sullivan
Funeral & Cremation Center
6467 N Northwest Hwy
Chicago, IL 60631
773-774-3333