Loretta Thorwart Cadden, 90, passed away peacefully September 4, 2019, at Aberdeen Village in Olathe, KS. She was the wife of Thomas S. Cadden, who preceded her in death in 2007 after they shared 53 years of marriage.
Loretta was born April 14, 1929 in St. Marys, PA, to Victoria Winslow and Fred Thorwart. Her family moved to Benezette, PA, after her father was killed in a tragic farming accident. She attended the Benezette School and was a very good student. When she was 11 years old she contracted rheumatic fever and was in such critical condition that a Catholic priest read her the last rights. A very tough woman, Loretta recovered and afterward spoke about an experience of seeing a light at the end of a tunnel.
In 1943 she began working in a firearms plant to help America’s war effort during WWII. After the war she moved to Pittsburgh, went to secretarial school, and did some modeling for companies such as Monsanto, General Electric and Wells Gardiner Displays. In 1952 she took a job at the Smith Taylor & Jenkins advertising agency, where she met Tom Cadden, one of the agency’s writers. They began dating and married in 1954, subsequently moving to St. Louis where they had their first child, Tom Cadden Jr.
In 1956 the family moved to Skokie, IL. Loretta became a stay-at-home mother and Tom Sr. was hired by Tatham-Laird & Kudner, a Chicago advertising agency, where he eventually became a creative director and producer. Tom wrote jingles for many well-known products—most notably the original Mr. Clean jingle, which is still used today more than 60 years later. Loretta’s daughter, Holly Ann Cadden, was born in 1958.
In 1959 the family moved to a home in Glenview, IL, where Tom and Loretta would live for the next 48 years. Her third and last child, Timothy Winslow Cadden, was born in 1961. From 1962-78, Loretta and Tom Sr. raised their three children as they went to Bell Elementary School, Locust Jr. High, and New Trier West High School. All three went on to attend the University of Kansas, Tom’s alma mater.
In 1979, Loretta went to work for New Trier High School, eventually serving as an administrator in the human resources department. She and husband Tom also became avid bike riders, riding some or all of the nearby 32-mile forest preserve bike path almost every day—even in winter, when conditions permitted. She became a grandmother in 1988 when the first of her six grandchildren was born. Being a grandmother didn’t stop Loretta from being adventurous. During this time she tried out a number of different activities, including cross-country skiing and tap dancing.
After Tom Sr. suffered a stroke in 2006, Loretta cared for him until his death in 2007. She was a wonderful, devoted caretaker. After Tom’s death, she moved to Olathe KS to be near Tim and Holly, residing in Aberdeen Village, a retirement community offering tiered levels of care. Although she suffered from dementia the last few years at Aberdeen, she always enjoyed being in the company of family.
Loretta had many other attributes: She was very skilled at calligraphy, so much so that her talents were in demand by friends and relatives. She was great at crossword puzzles and was a formidable card player. She also had a great sense of humor. The family liked to rib each other, and Loretta gave as good as she got.
Loretta is survived by her sisters, Marian Ann Tydall and Dorothy Edna Thorwart; children Tom (Gloria) Cadden, Holly (Tim) Soptick and Tim (Donna) Cadden; grandchildren Jaymie, Jayson and Jaylyn Jenks, Tommy Cadden, and Jonathan and Christopher Cadden. The family will hold a private memorial service. Memorial donations in Loretta’s honor may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, www.alz.org.
Colleague ay New Trier ,Winnetka ,Illinois
My sincere sympathy to Loretta's family. She was a lovely and caring woman who made everyone feel comfortable. Her presence on the New Trier staff in human resources were valued by all with with whom she had contact