Merrikay Ann Banks, 69, of Batavia, IL, formerly of Moline, passed away Tuesday, December 18, 2018, at Symphony of Orchard Valley, Aurora, after battling Stage 4 Ovarian Cancer.

Memorial services will be held at 1 p.m., Sharp, Saturday, January 5, 2019, at Esterdahl Mortuary & Crematory, Ltd., Moline.  Visitation will be from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.  prior to the services at the funeral home.  Private inurnment will be at Hampton Cemetery.  In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the family.  The family asks that those who attend wear accessories with the color of Teal (Ovarian Cancer) and Pink (Breast Cancer). 

Merrikay was born on October 5, 1949, in Moline, the daughter of Henry W. and Shelley (Dixon) Ritchie, Jr.  She graduated from Moline High School in 1967 and was the first African American cheerleader at the school.  She married Michael Banks in 1969 and they had two sons. 

Merrikay was a strong and courageous woman who survived breast cancer in 1981 and in 1988 without chemo or radiation.  She was previously employed at John Deere Davenport Works World Construction Division where she worked as administrative assistant to senior management at the plant.  While there she also worked as special coordinator for tours given at the plant.  She made lifelong friends while at Deere and stayed close to the retirement community through the years.  Merrikay was a loving and devoted mother and enjoyed spending her time with her sons and her grandchildren.

Survivors include her sons, LaVance (Kristin) Banks, and Tavian Banks; 8 grandchildren; brothers, Henry (Georgia) Ritchie, Louis Ritchie, and Steve (Becky) Ritchie.

She was preceded in death by her parents.