Judith E. McKinley

July 01, 1947 - September 21, 2021

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On September 21, 2021, Judith Evelyn (Pierce) McKinley, 74, beloved wife, mother, grandmother, and sister, passed away peacefully at her home in Huntertown, Indiana, following a long, courageous battle with cancer.

Judy was born in Washington, DC to Edward and Gladys (Schoener) Pierce, the youngest of two children.

She graduated from Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring, Maryland, and attended Greensboro College in North Carolina to earn her bachelor’s degree in Music Education. Judy worked for Thrapp & Thrapp Law Office and Yoder & Kraus Attorneys at Law, both in Kendallville, Indiana.

Judy married Michael McKinley in 1972 and they resided in Manassas & Annandale, Virginia, prior to moving to Kendallville where they lived for 40 years.

Judy loved to travel, and she and Michael enjoyed many trips to destinations around the world. She also loved Broadway musicals, a love she passed on to her family by attending shows and performing together. Judy had a beautiful singing voice she used not only on stage but also for singing with and directing choirs.

Her bravery and strength during her battle with cancer was an inspiration to her family and also the many nurses, doctors, and other cancer patients she met along the way.

Judy is survived by her husband of 49 years, Michael; their daughters, Kathryn (Dave) Lemish of Huntertown and Jessica (Chad) Hillegass of Fort Wayne; her four precious grandchildren, Nora and Amelia Lemish and Ethan and Gabriel Hillegass; and her brother, Ranny (Donna) Pierce of Teaneck, New Jersey.

A celebration of life will be hosted by the family at a later date.

Memorials may be made to Visiting Nurse of Fort Wayne or the Fort Wayne Children’s Choir.

Young Family Funeral Home, Kendallville Chapel, 222 South State Street, Kendallville is assisting the family with arrangements.

Share memories and condolences at www.youngfamilyfuneralhome.com

Guest Book

Janis Engerman
October 6th, 2021 2:53am

I am so sorry for your loss. I always enjoyed talking with Judy. She was such a talented lady. She was a very strong lady with the battle with cancer. John and I had several run in at the cancer center and it was good to talk with her and Mike. Prayers to you all. God bless.

Sara (Engerman) Church
October 6th, 2021 2:40am
Fort Wayne

Mike, Kathryn, Jessica and family, I am so sorry for your loss. I have so many wonderful memories of Judy and the time spent with all of you. Sending many prayers to you all and wishing you comfort in all the wonderful memories you have of her.

Roberta Nix
September 25th, 2021 6:07pm
Fort Wayne

Michael, Kathryn, Jessica and family You have my deepest sympathy! As some people journey through life, they leave footprints of kindness, love, courage, compassion, and joy. Judy was one of those individuals! You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Susan & Andy
September 23rd, 2021 8:00pm
Chicago, Illinois

Kathryn, we are sorry for your loss. With sincere condolences, Susan & Andy

Delores Forbes
September 23rd, 2021 6:57pm

As the days continue to pass, I hope you find comfort and support in the people that surround you and the wonderful memories you carry in your mind and in your heart. Judy was a beautiful person inside and out. She will be greatly missed.

Jenny Behrns
September 23rd, 2021 5:27pm
Fort Wayne, Indiana

Judy was so kind and thoughtful to Tom and I. Even though she was struggling, she sent cards of hope and prayers to us. She had a wonderful sense of humor. My thoughts and prayers to Michael and Family.

Tina Kocher
September 23rd, 2021 4:49pm

Mike and family. May your memories of Judy help you with your loss. I remember her as outgoing, loving, and tough. May your faith carry you during the days ahead.

Darlene Huttsell
September 23rd, 2021 2:40pm
Gilbert Arizona

I am so sorry for your loss. Praying for strength and comfort.

Donna Osmun
September 23rd, 2021 1:41pm
Fort Wayne

Kathryn and Jessica I'm so extremely sorry for your families loss. My prayers of comfort and strength are with you.

Jeff and Linds Devers
September 23rd, 2021 3:00am

Michael, we are so very sorry to learn of Judy’s passing. Our deepest condolences to you, your daughters and the grandchildren. She was a lovely neighbor and friend. God’s Blessings to you our friend.