Lucija Kolar Vucicevic, age 88, of Chicago and Glen Ellyn, IL, passed away peacefully on May 4, 2023, attended in love by her son John Vucicevic, daughter Anna Vucicevic Rozenich and son-in-law Rudolf (Rudi) Rozenich. Her only granddaughter Justine Rozenich of Glen Ellyn and Boston College also deeply mourns the loss of her treasured Baka (grandmother).
Lucija is preceded in death by her husband Krunoslav (Kruno) Vucicevic, son Stevie, parents Ruza (nee Kulas) and Ivan Kolar and siblings Mile, Kaja, Mare, Dragica, Marko, Milka, and Ana.
In addition to her children and grandchild, sadness at her passing is felt by siblings Ilija (Mira) Kolar (Australia) and Kate Kolar (late Tomislav) Lelas (Canada); nephews Mile and Ivica Kolar with their families (Croatia), niece Vesna Kovacevic and family (Croatia), nephew and niece Peter Kolar and Mary-Ann Kolar McLerie and family (Australia) and nephews Miroslav Lelas (Florida) and Zvonimir Lelas and family (Canada).
Born in 1934 in the village of Baljevac on the border of present-day Croatia and Bosnia, she was beloved as a wife, mother, grandmother, daughter, sister, relative, and friend to many across the United States, Australia, Austria, Canada and Republic of Croatia.
Since first emigrating from Zagreb in 1964, Lucija remained devout to her Roman-Catholic faith and true to her national heritage. She took pride in being a Croatian from the Lika region and a naturalized U.S. citizen.
In 1965, at Holy Trinity Croatian Catholic Church on Throop Street, she married Kruno and they settled in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood in an apartment on Harper Court. Both Lucija and her husband were dedicated supporters of many causes, including Hrvatski Domobran and Croatian soccer team HNNK “Hrvat,” where Kruno served a term as club president before his passing in 1972.
After her husband’s death, she relocated the family to the city’s north side and was among the founding members of the Croatian Catholic parish of Angel Guardian (now Blessed Alojzije Stepinac Croatian Catholic Mission) and the Croatian Cultural Center (CCC). Lucija and her family were proud to be in community with fellow Croatians at many cultural institutions in Chicago which included the Croatian School (Hrvatska Skola) at the CCC; Croatian Folklore Group, and most recently the Croatian Vines (Hrvatska Loza) folklore group where Lucija’s granddaughter performed as a tamburica musician, violinist and dancer.
Visitation will be held from 9:00 am to 10:00 am at Blessed Alojzije Stepinac Croatian Catholic Mission on Saturday, May 13, 2023, at 6346 N. Ridge Avenue, Chicago, IL 60660; 773.262.0535. Funeral mass will commence at 10:00 am.
Interment to follow at St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery, 87th Street and S. Hamlin Avenue, Evergreen Park, IL 60805, under guidance of Smith-Corcoran Funeral Home, 6150 N. Cicero Avenue, Chicago, IL 60646; 773.736.3833.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations in Lucija Vucicevic’s name to any of the following causes close to her heart: St. Ilija’s Chapel in Baljevac; St. Franjo Asiski Parish in Zavalje; Croatian Vines Folklore Group or the Croatian School at the Croatian Cultural Center of Chicago.
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