Elizabeth Jean "Buffy" (McGilligan) Stevens

Nov 30th, 1942 – March13, 2023

MADISON, WI – Elizabeth “Buffy” J. Stevens, age 80, passed away March 13, 2023 at St. Mary’s Hospital in Madison, WI. She was born November 30, 1942 in Madison, WI to parents, John and Ruth (Hommerstad) McGilligan.

Elizabeth was fondly nicknamed “Buffy” at a young age by her sister who couldn’t quite pronounce her first name; instead pronouncing it Elizabuff. Buffy was a 1960 graduate of Madison West high school. Buffy worked with her family’s upholstery business, McGilligan’s Interiors, from her early childhood until buying the company from her father and uncle in 1972. She transitioned the business in 1984, adding a full line furniture and interior design store to compliment the upholstery and cabinet shops.

In 2004 Buffy closed McGilligan’s and joined her son as a lead designer at Stevens Design until her retirement in 2016.

Buffy married James “Jim” E. Stevens on June 13, 1964. Together they raised two sons until Jim’s death in 2009. Buffy loved traveling Internationally and enjoyed returning back up north to the Hayward, WI area in the Summers. She was a faithful member of Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church and enjoyed her involvement in the Rosary Alter Society and being active in the church since 1970. She is considered to be the first woman to be highlighted in the “Know Your Madisonian”.

Buffy will be dearly missed and remembered as a caring, loving, and thoughtful person who would not hesitate in giving someone a second chance and always found a way to help others through their struggles.

Buffy is survived by her sons, Brad (Susan) Stevens and Chris Stevens; grandchildren, John, Bryn, Brenna, Olivia, Camden and other loving family members.

She was preceded in death by her parents John and Ruth McGilligan, her husband Jim; and sister, Patricia (Robert) Gavigan.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 6:30 p.m., Friday, March 31, 2023 at BLESSED SACRAMENT CATHOLIC CHURCH, 2116 Hollister Ave., Madison, WI, with Father James Marchionda presiding.

A visitation will take place one hour prior to the Mass, from 5:30-6:30 p.m., Friday, March 31 at the church.


West High Class of 1960 Picnic - Vilas Park

Could be Buffy at 1:05.

She runs away to the right out of frame

Listen to Buffy and the Family - 1977

Buffy and Jim

June 13th, 1964 - Wedding Reception Edgewater Hotel and Honeymoon