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Drinda L. OConnor

Drinda L. OConnor passed away peacefully at her home on July 16, surrounded by family and friends.

Drinda was born on August 9, 1951, in Monticello, KY, daughter of James Paul and Joyce Inez Hicks.

Drinda graduated from Pleasant Plains High School and earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Sangamon State University in Springfield, IL. She served for 24 years in Illinois State Government. Fifteen of those years were with the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) serving as the Deputy Chief Operations Officer where she managed the State of Illinois’ largest leased property portfolio. Prior to working at DHS Drinda served as Director of Citizens Assistance and Community Affairs for both Governor James Thompson and Governor Jim Edgar.

Drinda was very active in her community, volunteering her time and efforts to many organizations. She is a former elected Trustee of Lincoln Land Community College, serving as Chairman of the Board. She is a former appointed Commissioner of the Springfield Airport Authority, Trustee of the Sangamon County Water Reclamation District, President of the World Affairs Council of Central Illinois, one of the seven Commissioners that oversee the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission and Treasurer of the Sangamon County Republican Foundation, where she planned all of the fundraising events and chaired dozens of fundraisers for numerous local and Statewide candidates. She was also involved in numerous other social groups, clubs and committees, including Sunnyside, Together Women Rise, and the Sangamon County Republican Women.

Drinda lived a full life personally as well as professionally. Drinda's love for travel led her to more than thirty countries including Japan, China, Africa, Jordan, Cuba, Norway, Switzerland, and Egypt. She loved reading and learning about family history.

Above all Drinda was happiest when spending time with her three girls. She loved them more than anything else and made sure they always knew just how special they were. She always said that being "Gaga" to Addi was the best job she ever had. She will also be remembered for her love for her family and friends. She was a kind, generous soul, with a personality that could light up any room; encouraging everyone to follow their hearts and dreams and that with a little hard work, nothing was out of reach.

Drinda was preceded in death by her parents and her beloved brother, Jimmy Wayne Hicks.

Drinda is survived by her daughters, Kelly Anne Sweeton, Julie K. Warrens (Duane), and the love of her life her granddaughter, Addison (Addi) Elizabeth Warrens.

She is also survived by siblings, Carolyn Sue Reavis, Forrest Lee Hicks (Sally; deceased) Deena Charlene Barnett, Billy Jo Hicks (Connie), and Paul Jason Hicks. She is also survived by a multitude of nieces, nephews, and cousins.

A funeral service will be held at 10:00am on Friday July 21, 2023 at Bisch and Son Funeral Home, 505 East Allen Street with burial to follow at Oak Ridge Cemetery. The family receive friends from 4pm – 7pm Thursday July 20, 2023 at Bisch and Son.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Mountainview Church Camp, 130 N. Main St. Monticello, Kentucky 42633 and the Sangamon County Republican Women's Scholarship Fund, 201 Prestwick Road, Springfield, Illinois 62702 and condolences may be left at


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