Illinois News

Sisters to honor late mother with concert

Sisters Heather House, Tina Bunte and Angie Walsh rehearse for a memorial concert for their mother at Mendon Congregational Church on Thursday, Nov. 16, 2017. The memorial coincides with the third anniversary of the death of their mother. | H-W Photo/Jake Shane
By Herald-Whig
Posted: Nov. 17, 2017 9:05 am

MENDON, Ill. -- Three Adams County sisters will honor their late mother Sunday by performing on the third anniversary of her death.

Tina Bunte and her two sisters, Angie Walsh and Heather House, spent most of their lives singing with their mother, Gay Andrew, at church services and banquets.

"Mom was an angel," Bunte said. "She never turned down an opportunity to help somebody."

Bunte remembers her mother as a woman strong in her faith and inspirational to those around her. A cancer survivor, "words hardly describe her," Bunte said.

"We want to do it in honor of her. It's because of her that we are who we are," she said. "We'll be handing out tissues at the door."

Sunday's performance, which will be at 2 p.m. at Mendon Congregational Church, will be the one of the only times the three sisters have performed together since their mother's death. They sang a special song on the first anniversary of Andrew's death at Loraine Methodist Church, where the sisters attended services growing up. Their father, Bernie Andrew, was in the audience for that show, but he didn't know about the show beforehand.

"We sang ‘Hallelujah.' It was the next song we were going to sing with mom, but we never got that opportunity," Bunte said. "It moved dad. It moved the church."

Bunte remembers performing without making eye contact with the audience because she was overwhelmed with emotion. She hopes to be able to look up during Sunday's show but concedes that performing with her sisters in her mother's honor still is very emotional.

"We just want to smile and enjoy the day," Bunte said. "It's a celebration."

The performance will be free, but the sisters will be accepting donations at the door. All donations collected will benefit the American Cancer Society.

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