Dolores M. Yarbrough, 90


Dolores Mae (Graham) Yarbrough, 90, died peacefully on Monday, May 30, 2022, at home in her own bed after celebrating her 90th birthday party with family and friends that evening.

A memorial service will be held Saturday, June 25, beginning at 1 p.m. at Grace Lutheran Church, 313 S. Prospect Ave., Champaign. Following the service, there will be time to visit with family. The service will be live-streamed and recorded for those who are unable to attend. The live-stream may be found at Morgan Memorial Home in Savoy is assisting the family.

Mrs. Yarbrough was born May 25, 1932, in Fillmore, to Vera Harriet Graham and was reared on the Graham family farm with her extended family of grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins.

She was a bright student who attended a one-room schoolhouse in the country until she entered high school at Hillsboro High School from which she graduated with honors in 1949. She attended Carthage College for a year before she married Roger Loy Yarbrough, who she started dating the summer before college.

During their life, Mrs. Yarbrough and her husband lived in Colorado Springs, CO, Arlington, VA, Vandalia and Mt. Vernon, finally settling in Champaign in 1962. They celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary on June 1, 2021.

She was one of those rare people who had friends from all walks of life. She loved to talk, entertain and make people happy, and was equally at home at a white-tie affair or a backyard barbecue. She had a keen sense of humor until the day she died and was an accomplished writer of poetry, which she featured each year in family Christmas letters.

From her early years in Champaign, Mrs. Yarbrough was involved with Junior League, where she and her husband were famous for their comedic dance impression of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers at a charity event. She was featured in the Champaign-Urbana News Gazette for her brownie recipe. 

She was a supporter of the performing arts, including serving as co-chair of the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts Advisory Board, and was active in the Illinois Opera Enthusiasts.

Mrs. Yarbrough and her husband joined St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church in Urbana in the 1960s and were active in building the current church on Philo Road. In later years, they attended Grace Lutheran Church in Champaign. She was also active in PEO, her Backyardigans lunch group which grew out of the old neighborhood Bridge Club, Phi Beta Chi and many other clubs and organizations.

Above all else, she was a wonderful mother, not only to her own children, but to many who received her unwavering support and unconditional love.

One of her favorite past-times was travel, especially with her family. In early years, the family spent many happy days camping and boating with many friends in the area. Later in life, she traveled on the ship QE2, went on a safari in Eastern Africa, explored Europe and the Holy Land, Hong Kong and China. Even after suffering a debilitating stroke in 2006, she was determined not to be held back by her injuries and continued to travel to Russia and Antarctica, where she had to see the penguins.

Mrs. Yarbrough is survived by her devoted husband; three children, Michelle (Jackie) Yarbrough of White Heath, Lee Yarbrough of Honolulu, HI, and Amy (Mario) Cuomo of Carmel, IN; grandchildren, 12-year-old triplets Elena Cuomo, Caterina Cuomo and Mario Cuomo III; first cousins; and numerous family and friends.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to a charity of the donor’s choice.

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