Gretchen M. Horan

April 7, 1960 - January 16, 2020

Gretchen M. Horan


Gretchen M. Horan, 59, of Belvidere, IL passed away on January 16, 2020 in Rockford, IL. She was born on April 7, 1960 in Minneapolis, MN to Richard James and Mary (Simons) Buhr. Gretchen married her wonderful husband, Steve Horan, on April 25, 1998 in their backyard in Belvidere, IL. Gretchen received her bachelor’s degree in Special Education and taught for over 29 years. Gretchen also ran the Kids First Daycare and Preschool in Belvidere, IL.

Gretchen found her spiritual home at St. James Catholic Church. She was also a member of the American Legion. She was a black belt in Tae Kwon Do. Gretchen loved painting, riding horses, reading, listening to music, but especially The Beatles, and the mountains.

Gretchen would always put others needs before her own and never asked for anything in return. She had a heart of gold and was loved by so many. Family was the most important thing to Gretchen, and she cherished each and every one of them.

Gretchen will be dearly missed by her husband, Steve; her mother, Mary; her children, Jeremy (Stephanie Summers) Malikowski, Melissa (Randall Hagan) Malikowski, Danielle (Michael) Kay, AJ Horan, Aimee (Ryan Turner) Horan, Nicholas (Brittany Mossong) Horan and her fur babies, Angus and Rigby; her sister, Aimee (Don) Potter; her grandchildren, Dionne Malikowski, Trey Scott, Mary Labatte, Jordan Malikowski, Alden Horan, Cooper Kay, Carson Kay, Camden Kay, Greenley Kay; 1 great-granddaughter; and her niece and nephew, Amanda and John Potter.

She was preceded in death by her father, Richard Buhr; her son, Arthur Malikowski; and her brother, John Buhr. To light a candle or write a condolence, please visit

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Steve and family, we are so sorry to learn of your loss. I wish I had known sooner. Ms. Gretchen was a wonderful day care provider and friend to my kids when we lived in Belvidere. She had such a kind soul. My kids still talk about her with such fond memories. She will be greatly missed. Love, the Abramavicius family

Rebekah Abramavicius 2022-03-01T09:02:06

Gretchen will be remembered always as a kind and gentle soul who gave of herself to people in need. Her untimely death will leave a hugh whole on this earthly life, as she will be missed immensely by many. My sympathy for her loving family, know that we care.

Gary and Sherry Strack 2020-01-30T07:48:24

So sorry for the families loss, our prayers are with all of you!

Nick and Joan Kranz 2020-01-23T17:58:26

Your family is in our prayers and thoughts. The impact she had on our hearts and lives will never be forgotten.

Kathie sesto 2020-01-20T19:57:11

I’m still in shock. What a great friend and neighbor. So many good memories. The world will miss your kindness and smile.

Mary 2020-01-20T18:27:27

Hey Horan family! Deeply sorry to hear about your mom passing. She was an amazing woman and gave me great kindness when I first met her. We may not speak much anymore but to Nick and Aimee… I’m truly sorry and I’m here for either one of you if needed. God bless your family 🙏

Casey Miner 2020-01-20T16:57:51

Deepest heartfelt condolences for your loss. May your entire Family find solace in knowing you are truly in a better place. May God shine His blessings down on you all to ease your grief.

Andy & YonHui Gasior 2020-01-20T16:54:34

So sorry for your loss prayers for your family, our Grandchildren Savanah and Connor loved her so much 🙏

Sylvia Fowler 2020-01-20T15:10:48


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