Cinnamon Legutko Obituary, Illinois State Museum Director Has Passed Away

Cinnamon Legutko Obituary, Illinois State Museum Director Has Passed Away

Cinnamon Legutko Obituary, Death – The unthinkable has actually come to pass. Cinnamon Catlin-Legutko lost her courageous fight against two different types of cancer over the course of the past year, and she has passed away. Larry Legutko, her perfect match and husband, has been there for her every step of the way and has been supportive throughout the entire process. We are in awe of him and so very grateful that she had met her great love and that his love and care supported her always.

We are so very grateful that she met her great love. It was the encouragement and love of Larry that aided in her development into the person she ultimately became. The first time you met Cinnamon, she left an indelible impression on you. She was extremely bright and witty, and she had the ability to command a room. She was determined and successful in her work, but more importantly, she was passionate about, and laser-focused on, ensuring that the native voice was accurately and more fairly represented.

She was well-known across the country for her work with local museums, as well as for her contributions to the decolonization of museums, and she was a member of a large number of boards and commissions. She once showed me a name badge for a conference, and I am certain that the many ribbons that were placed below her name reached her navel. Even as recently as last week, President Biden appointed her to a commission pertaining to Route 66. Cinnamon was known to be hilarious and outspoken.

Since we were both teenagers, she has been my closest friend and the person I can always trust to tell the truth to. Along with Sandy Alter, our friendship deepened and developed as the years passed and as we went through different phases of life: high school at Harrison, college at Purdue, transitioning into young adulthood, getting married, having children, grieving the loss of parents, experiencing triumphs and tragedies, going on trips and going on adventures; she was there through it all. Always.

She was my music and concert companion, and despite the fact that therapy was making her weaker, she still made it to see Coldplay. She achieved a lot of success, but she kept working hard and moving forward because she knew there was more for her to achieve. She never gave up on her career, her life, or her relationships with her family and friends. Her son Jacob, whom she inspired to pursue his own interests by going to Japan to travel and study over the course of the past year, has made her so very proud.

She waited for him to return home to her before deciding that she was ready to leave herself. After he did, she left. Her legacy will live on in the accomplishments of her work and in the countless lives that she has changed via the influence she has exerted on people’s minds and hearts. Larry has requested that no flowers be sent in lieu of the celebrations of his life, which will take place later in the year. We are cooperating with her professional community in order to establish a scholarship or foundation in order to continue the essential job that she has been doing.

Before making any contributions, we ask that you wait until the memorial fund has been established.

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