• 40 years old
  • Born on December 22, 1976 in Elkhorn, Wisconsin, United States.
  • Passed away on August 12, 2017 .

Our memories are precious treasure, especially when those memories are of a person who has moved on to be with the Lord. Our memories serve as a vehicle to transport us to a time when the person we miss so dearly was with us. Through memories we can experience that person’s presence, even if for a little time. Chris is not gone; she is just not here in our physical presence right now. She will live on as long as we keep alive the memories we have shared with her.

Simple words can never completely serve to illustrate who Christine Novak was as a person. She has been so many things to so many people. All who have come in contact with her have known her in different ways. But if we all share our memories and connections that we had with her, we can weave a tapestry of remembrance. As time moves on, and memories start to fade, we will have these stories and tributes to look back on to remind us of what a special person we had in our midst.

Not only will sharing online bring us together as a community who love Chris, but it will allow us to become the voices that remind her children as they grow up how special their mom was to everyone around her.

I (Amy McQuiggan, long-time family friend) am going to create a hard copy of the memories and pictures that people share on this site. That way, as the kids grow up they can read through these stories and tributes whenever they want to.

There are five ways you can share your thoughts and memories:

Scroll down and share a Tribute below. A tribute is a great way to express admirable traits that Chris possessed and to share thoughts about her impact on your life.

Click the “stories” tab above to share specific stories about Chris. These can be funny, serious, or just recounting some time that you shared with her. You can also share pictures that correspond to the stories. 

Click the "gallery" tab above to share stand-alone pictures. These will be helpful when creating the printed book to place on pages that contain tributes. 

Click the "gallery" tab and download a video tribute, a story, or a short video clip you may have of Chris. If we get enough videos, we will compile them into one edited video for the kids to watch. 

If you want to write a tribute or memory or to share a picture for the printed book only (for the Novak family) and you prefer not to share online, you can email the designated email address:


Thank you for sharing your thoughts, memories, and pictures. If you would like your submission to be included in the printed memorial book, make sure you add it by October 1, 2017. If you have any questions about the page or submissions, you can reach me at the email above. 

Posted by John Novak on 14th September 2018
A little known fact that I would never have shared at the funeral was that your Mom broke up with your Dad in the summer of 1987. After the break-up, your Dad put all of his energy into his little painting business and ping pong. He came in third place in an Illinois Championship Tournament. In the fall of 1987, your Mom was regretting her decision to break up and drove to Champaign, Illinois, where your Dad was in his final year at the University of Illinois. Your Dad refused to see her; and she drove home without ever getting to talk to him. She called me on her cell while driving back sobbing. I could hardly understand her pleas for my intervention. Needless to say, I took up her cause. I never could say, "No" to your Mom. I loved her so much. In December of the same year, your Dad and I bought a diamond ring and in August of 1988 they were married. Best intervention of my life!
Posted by Brenda Norton on 13th August 2018
It’s so difficult to believe that Chris has been gone one year. I remember her shining face of joy and that huge smile. It was always so great to see her when the family would come back to St. Louis to visit. She was so popular that people would be crowded around her waiting to talk to her after church. She was always a blessing to everyone. She loved others well and she loved the Lord. I miss her.
Posted by Jaimee Arroyo on 28th September 2017
Dear Elizabeth and Evelyn, The first memory I have of your mother was playing out in the snow in Grandma and Grandpa’s backyard. I remember her smile, her laugh, and her love for you father Joe. If I ever was sure about anything it was that she loved him very much. I remember when she asked me to be in her wedding. I squealed and danced and jumped up and down. I was so excited to be gaining another sister. At her wedding, her bouquet had 21 red roses, which was how old she was. During her vows she was trying to say, “I joyfully give myself to you” but was crying so much that she blurted out, “I don’t SOUND very joyful!” We all had a really good laugh. She was able to finish her vows, which she faithfully kept until the day she died. After high school she dyed her hair auburn red. It was so pretty. Really there never was a time that I didn’t think your mom was gorgeous. One time she invited me to a Matrix hair show. We got to pick to get our hair done any way we wanted for free and since they were short a few models they asked your mom and me to walk the runway. It was by far one of the craziest things I ever did but we had so much fun. She made sure everything we ever did was an adventure. Your mom and I took a lot of walks and talks over the years. It was our special thing. Every holiday or family get together we would escape after dinner and talk about all the things on our hearts. She was such a good listener and always gave good godly advice. What I wouldn’t give for just one more walk. Over the years your mom took Uncle Johnny and me with your dad to many fun things. If we made a list of all the trips your mom ever took it would be a very long. She was such an adventurer. Some of my favorites were going to the apple orchards, Lord of the Dance, the Michigan Dunes, the Butterfly House, the St. Louis arch, and skiing. I remember going over a little ski jump and her telling me now remember to get enough speed so I wouldn’t slide back down. I got way too much speed and she yelled out, “Jaimee you are going TOO fast!” I hit the ramp and flew through the air and then fell hard. She had to call the medic toboggan to come and get me. I was ok but what an experience. That was her goal to always give us an experience to remember. I remember one time when she was pregnant with either you Elizabeth or Timothy and she came out to the Grandma and Grandpa’s back porch. She had stuffed a pillow into her dress to make it look like she was further along than she was. It was hilarious. She loved a good practical joke. I remember she was so big with Jordan. He was a huge baby and she was such a petite person. At his baby shower she said she was so sick of people asking her if she was carrying twins. Your mom had a lot of spice and never failed to le us all know what was on her mind. I loved that about her. Your mom was sentimental and loved trying all the Polish things connected to both sides of your family tree. She tried to make gwumpki, kruschiki, and poppy seed bread. Your mom wanted to taste and to try every recipe. It was like she couldn’t get enough out of life and wanted to try everything. I’m going to miss her. I’m going to miss the way she didn’t just walk through a room but bounced through it. I’m going to miss her big chunky sweaters from Ireland and the way she held her hands sometimes in her pockets. I’m going to miss her tilting her head back and laughing with her whole mouth open. I’m going to miss that mischievous twinkle in her eyes, the same one I see in you and Evelyn. I’m going to miss the way she called you and your siblings “Miss” and “Mister” when you were babies. I loved the cute baby voice she used when telling your dad what you were trying to say before you could talk. She was a wonderful person in everyway. I see so much of her in both of you. I’m thankful that she poured so much of herself in to you girls. I love you both.
Posted by Toni Pieper on 24th August 2017
I met Chris at Mt. Zion Christian Church. It was spring of 2011. We were both expecting, she with Timothy and me with Alexa. She sought me out because we were both pregnant. We became fast friends. I had 2 girls already that were about Elizabeth's age. The three of them loved to run around church together. I found myself staying late after service just so I could say hi to Chris. We would discuss how having a baby in the house was and would give each other encouragement and advice where we could. She was so warm and was always smiling. She was one of those people that everyone wanted to be around. We went to a few play dates at her house. I remember walking in thinking how does a mother of almost five keep such a beautiful home. Being a mother of almost three I felt like I was barely holding things together. As she showed us around we went into the school room. I was blown away by how she also taught all the kids at home. The room was neat and in order with desks and everything. My admiration for her grew more. Then we went outside. She showed us an incredible garden and chickens. I was in awe! She was a gracious host during our visits. I remember coming over to swim the summer of 2011. Both of us with giant bellies enjoying the sun. I had forgotten to bring my camera. She took pictures for me and emailed them to me. My girls loved playing with Elizabeth. I remember going to a jewelry party at the house. She had gone above and beyond with fun little foods and pulled out all kinds of jewelry for the girls to wear. It was so girly and fun. She tried hard to create some girliness for Elizabeth to a house overridden with boys! She loved having a girl! She was a big believer of natural remedies. She loved to use oils. She researched in depth about which oils were good for what. She was ready to share knowledge she had found from reading about the oils. I remember she always smelled like a mixture tea tree oil and other oils. She smelled good. We moved away the summer of 2014 and it was hard to keep in touch because she didn't do Facebook. We emailed back and forth a few times. She was an amazing woman. I wish we could've had more play-dates with our kiddos and could learn from her infinite knowledge. I miss her!
Posted by Casey Sampson on 22nd August 2017
I remember seeing Chris on Sundays with all 7 of her kids sitting quietly in their row. Even the littlest one which is Selah's age would play quietly or sleep. I would grab Selah from the nursery and bring her back to the sanctuary to fellowship and Selah is running around, climbing on the stage, and making all sorts of ruckus. I remember asking her what her secret was, because here she is with 7, and I can hardly keep up with 1. She just sort of smiled and shrugged and said it gets easier as you have more. Chris was a beautiful mom who raised beautiful kids who love the Lord. I am not going to lie, I had a mom crush on her. I want to mom the way she did. I am so sad that I'll not get to ask her mom questions or hear her deep wisdom. It's a selfish thought, I know. I know I will continue to learn from her though, because her legacy goes on in her kids. I get to see the truths she planted into them that have already come out with a great measure of pressure that has already been placed on them. Today the sun was dark all across America. It felt fitting that the whole country should grow dark and mourn with us during her funeral service. The creation groans for the sons (and daughters) of God to be revealed, and Chris was God's favorite.
Posted by Brenda Norton on 21st August 2017
I remember when Jordan and Elijah were born. I had never seen such cheeks. You just wanted to grab them and squeeze them. So cute and she was so proud of those boys. Every time I would go over to where she was at church or at a Women's Retreat, that is all we would talk about was how gorgeous those boys cheeks were. She was so laid back and loving to all that got to know her. She was a blessing. She is so missed.
Posted by Amy McQuiggan on 21st August 2017
Being around Chris was so easy. There was no drama, no misunderstanding, no complication, just honesty and acceptance. She had a quiet confidence and unwavering ability to accept each person while striving to understand them. People were important to her. She had the ability to listen, to really listen, to what you were saying and to help you feel that you were completely accepted. She was an extraordinary person and I am blessed to have known her. She was a true friend and one of the best people I have ever known.

Leave a Tribute