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PASSAGES Michaeline Chvatal
2008-02-27

This article shared 5269 times since Wed Feb 27, 2008
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Michaeline Chvatal, one of the founding members of the local lesbian feminist choral group The Artemis Singers, passed away Feb. 16. She was 60.

Chvatal was the loving daughter of Lorraine and the late Joseph Chvatal; beloved partner of Karen Mooney; cherished sister of Sarah ( Jimmy ) Brindis, Dorothy ( Pat ) Chvatal, Eugene ( Lee ) Chvatal, Ralph Chvatal, Larry ( Cathy ) Chvatal and Frank Chvatal; and adoring aunt to Christina, James, Robert, Susan, James, Desiree, Laura, Lisa and Andrea.

Born and raised in Chicago, Chvatal attended Notre Dame High School for Girls and lived on the Near North Side all her life. Most recently, she worked as a shipping manager for Graymills, a manufacturing company. She also owned her own house painting and decorating company.

A lesbian feminist, and one of the earliest and longest standing members of Artemis Singers, Chvatal will be remembered as a tender, strong friend with a tireless community spirit. She never took for granted the importance of her lesbian feminist community, and consistently demonstrated her leadership through service. In addition to her service to Artemis Singers, Chvatal was a volunteer for many years with Mountain Moving Coffeehouse and Toni Armstrong Jr.'s publication, HOT WIRE.

Chvatal, affectionately known to friends as Mike, was one of the original attendees of the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival, returning there for a crowning ceremony on her 50th birthday. She sang with the Queertette, a small barbershop harmony group within Artemis Singers; in years past, played volleyball in the Women's Sports Association's Recreational League; and was a photographer.

'Michaeline was one of those rare individuals who worked in the lesbian-feminist community for decades, and without making enemies,' said Armstrong Jr., a women's music expert and former Chicagoland activist. 'Project after project, she chose to be 'the good foot soldier'—working behind the scenes, never asking for the limelight, cheerfully putting in countless hours to advance lesbian-feminist culture. ... Her work with Artemis Singers is widely known and appreciated; I just want to be sure everyone knows how much credit Michaeline really deserves. What a great gal!'

There will be a memorial Sat., March 8, at Unity Church, 1925 W. Thome, at 2 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the Y-Me National Breast Cancer Organization, 212 W. Van Buren, #1000, Chicago, Ill., 60607-3903; 312-986-8338, www.y-me.org .


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