Karen Marie Cottrell was born on January 21, 1960, in Rockford, Illinois to Vearn and Constance Parkinson, and left this world January 2, 2021, after an 11 month battle with a rare cancer (Cholangiocarcinoma) with her family by her side. She was preceded in death by her parents. Karen is survived by her husband of 41 years, who was also her high school sweetheart, Bradley Cottrell; daughters Tracy Lynn De La Garza (Marco) and Jessica Marie Waller (David), as well as her grandchildren Marcy and Kalena De La Garza and David and Jolie Waller; her brothers David Parkinson and Gregory Parkinson (Pamela) of Rockford, Illinois. Karen worked many jobs throughout her life, but her most cherished was as a preschool teacher. She enjoyed traveling and cruising with her husband. She always said family is everything, and she felt blessed that her daughters, their husbands, and grandchildren lived nearby. She enjoyed doing arts and crafts with her grandchildren. She was very outgoing and loved by everyone she met. She was truly a light in everyone’s life. She was a wonderful wife, devoted mother, and a loving grandmother. Karen is now at peace with the Lord. She will be missed by all.
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