Departed Brethren

It is with sorrow and sense of loss that I inform you of the loss of these Brethren.

Allan James Gray, 104, of Silvis, passed away July 17, 2019, at Bickford Cottage in Davenport.
  Masonic services will be held Monday, July 22nd, at 1 p.m. at Schroder Mortuary in Silvis. Visitation will be one hour prior to service time. Burial will follow at Greenview Memorial Gardens in East Moline. Memorials may be made to the family.
  Allan was born April 19, 1915, in Moline, the son of Christopher and Jessie Fraser Gray. He married Marian M. Heath on March 7, 1942, in Memphis, Mo. She passed away July 19, 2006. Allan served in the Army during World War II. He retired from John Deere Foundry after 40 years and was a member of the Silvis Masonic Lodge and Moline VFW. He enjoyed golfing and bowling.
  Survivors include his son, Robert (Sharon) Gray, of Bettendorf; grandchildren, Christine (Michael) Coyne-Logan, Robert A. Jr. (Robyn) Gray and Jonathan (Kathleen McCormack) Gray; great-grandchildren, Trevor, William, Hallie and Stella; special nieces and nephews Jessie Boyd, Jackie Martens, Pam Green, Christopher Gray and Mike Green.
Allan was preceded in death by his wife; brother, Harry; sister, Alma Carlisle; and several nieces and nephews.

Willis B. Noftsger, 78 of Alpha, IL died Tuesday, April 9, 2019 at Seminary Manor in Galesburg. Services are 11:00 a.m. Friday April 12, 2019 at Peterson Wallin Knox Funeral Home in Alpha. Burial is in Rosedale Cemetery, Cambridge, Illinois where graveside military services will be conducted. Visitation is one hour prior to services Friday where memorials may be left to Tri-County Ambulance Service or the Oxford American Legion Post #1197. Online condolences may be left at
  He was born March 21, 1941 in Leon, Iowa to Bruce and Jennie Struble Noftsger. Willis married Wanda E. Roule April 9, 1966 in Leon, Iowa. She died April 26, 2017.  Willis was a U.S. Army veteran.  He was employed at the Michigan/Wisconsin Pipeline and retired from ANR Pipeline Company. Willis later worked part-time at CPS in Viola.  He was a former commander of the Oxford American Legion Post # 1197.
Survivors include one daughter: Wendy Capps of Des Moines, Iowa; one sister: Sharon (Billy) Jones of Lamoni, Iowa; one brother-in-law and sister-in-law: David and Bonnie Roule of Uniontown, Ohio; several nieces and nephews.  He was preceded in death by his parents; wife; two sons: Billy and Wayne.

James R.”Jim” Gallaugher , 83, of East Moline, IL, will be 10 am Friday at the Van Hoe Funeral Home Ltd., East Moline. Burial will be in Rock Island, National Cemetery. Visitation will be 4-7 Thursday at the funeral Home. Jim passed away on Saturday, April 13, 2019 at his home.
Jim was born July 27, 1935, in East Moline, the son of E. Roy and Myrtis Dykes Gallaugher.
After graduation from United Township High School in 1953, he attended the University of Illinois on a Rock Island Railroad scholarship. He graduated in 1957 with an Engineering degree. He married his high school sweetheart Joan Getty and began 5 years active duty in the Navy and served 20 years in the Naval Reserve. He achieved the rank of Captain in the Navy’s Civil Engineer Corp with various duties including duty in the Panama Canal Zone, Commanding Officer of the 26th Seabee Battalion headquartered in Glenview, IL, and various Regimental duties in several states.
After Navy active duty he was employed as a civilian by the Army at Rock Island Arsenal serving as Project Engineer on the Copperhead Artillery Shell, the M203 Grenade Launcher Attachment, and as the Army’s Chief Engineer on the M16 Rifle. The last 14 years with the Army, he served as Director of the Industrial Engineering Activity. He retired as a GS 15
Numerous awards were received from both the Army and Navy as well as an award from the American Legion as the most decorated Air Force ROTC cadet at the University of Illinois. Schools attended included a year at the National Defense University in Washington, D. C., the Federal Executive Institute in Charlottesville, Virginia, and Jungle Warfare School in Panama. Jim’s duties took him to every state in the U.S. and eight foreign countries.
After retirement from the Navy and Army he was employed for 10 years by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency as an Air Pollution Control Engineer, finally retiring in December 2000. He remained active with his 185 acre Tree Farm near Viola, IL.
Jim was a 32nd Degree Mason, a member of the National Defense Executive Reserve, was listed in “Who’s Who in the Midwest” and “Who’s Who in Technology”. He was a past president of Delta Phi Social Fraternity at the U of IL, past president of the local chapter of the American Defense Preparedness Association, and past president of the Navy Reserve Association. He served voluntarily for several years as a consultant to the Engineering Departments of Iowa State University and St. Ambrose University.
Survivors include his wife, Joan; children, Kathryn Douglass, Jeffrey, Cynthia Ross, Joel and spouse Marta, 8 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren; and sister, Patricia Place.
He was preceded in death by his parents and sisters, Reba Gallaugher and Wanda Reeves.
Memorials may be made to Seabee Memorial Scholarship Association.
Online condolences may be left for the family at

Duane H. Else, 83, formerly of Cambridge, died Tuesday, April 16, 2019, at Genesis Medical Center, Aledo. Arrangements: Stackhouse-Moore Funeral & Cremation Services, Cambridge.
More details will be forwarded as they become available.

Roger True Logan, 92, of Moline, passed peacefully on March 26, 2019 at Rosewood Care Center, Moline. Memorial services will be 11:00 a.m. Monday at the Knox Chapel of Wheelan Pressly Funeral Home and Crematory, 2106 7thAve., Rock Island. Visitation will be one hour prior to services at the Knox Chapel. Inurnment will be in Rock Island National Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society or to a charity of the donor’s’ choice.
Roger was born January 21, 1927 in Overton, NE, a son of John and Beatrice (Casey) Logan. He married Myrt Stubblefield in June of 1949. Roger served in the U.S. Army during the Occupation of Japan and was discharged in 1946. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Nebraska and worked for the Department of the Army in many capacities before retiring in 1986 at the Rock Island Arsenal. Roger was a lifetime member of the University of Nebraska Alumni Association and a die – hard Cornhusker fan. He was also a member of Lodge #57 A.F & A.M., KAABA Shriners, Blackhawk Shrine Club and he was a 32nd degree Mason of the Valley. He was also a life member of N.A.R.F.E., member of American Legion Post #246 and a member of First Congregational Church, Moline.
Roger is survived by his wife, Myrt; son, David (Teri) Logan, Davenport; daughter, Sharon Snow, Newport, OR; granddaughter, DeAna Fountain; grandson, Jeremy (Carissa) Fountain; great grandchildren, Devin, Dazia, Mackenzie, Trenton, Isaiah and great great granddaughter, Amiah Allen; sisters in law, Helen Brannon, Jessie O’Neil and Betty Stubblefield; Also surviving are many nieces, nephews and many extended family members and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Ester.

Edwin A. Nesbitt, 91, of Aledo, passed away peacefully surrounded by his loving family, on Friday, March 15, 2019 at Genesis Senior Living Aledo. Services are 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, March 20, 2019 at the Aledo United Methodist Church. Burial is in the Aledo Cemetery. Visitation is 4-7 p.m.Tuesday, at Fippinger Funeral Home in Aledo where Masonic Services will be conducted at 7pm. Memorials may be made to the Aledo United Methodist Church or the Alzheimer’s Association. Online condolences may be left at
Edwin “Ed” was born February 21, 1928 in Aledo, the son of Boyd P. and Myrtle C. (Anderson) Nesbitt. Ed was raised on the family farm north of Aledo. He graduated from Aledo High School, class of 1946. He married Marian Graham on July 19, 1947 at the Aledo United Methodist Church Parsonage. Together they raised six children. He worked 47 years in the trucking industry, retiring from Preston Trucking in 1993. He then worked part-time at Walmart in Aledo, retiring in 2008. He also worked part-time at Fippinger Funeral Home in Aledo, retiring in 2012. Ed was a member of the Aledo United Methodist Church, Aledo Eastern Star Lodge 126, Aledo Masonic Lodge 252, and Teamsters Union 371.
Ed and Marian moved to the family farm in 1978. Ed enjoyed driving. He and Marian took many road trips, visiting several states. They also bowled and played cards with friends. They enjoyed spending time with family and attending their grandchildren’s events. Ed could often be found having morning coffee with his friends at the Town and Country Bowling Alley. He took much pride in maintaining his home and surrounding acreage.
Those left to cherish his memory include his loving wife of 71 years; and children; Steven (Michele), Odessa, FL; Linda (Steve) Nelson, Galva; Barbara (Stan) Damron, Alpha; David (Diane), Woodhull; Patricia (Greg) McKnight, Coal Valley; and Karen (Larry) Goff, Woodhull. He is survived by 12 grandchildren; Matthew Nesbitt, Diana Nesbitt, Leah (Brandon) Chapman, Laura Anderson, Brian (Melissa) Brown, Kevin (Becky) Brown, Brooke Crippen, Jeffrey Nesbitt, Denise (Kurt) Barman, Nathan Beuseling, Christopher (Sawyer) Goff, and Cari (Jason) Main; three step-grandchildren; 17 great grandchildren; two nieces and two nephews; including Clifford (Traci) Nesbitt, Aledo; a great niece (bonus granddaughter), Jill Dunn, Seaton; a brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Richard and Ardythe Graham, Viola; and his special caregiver, Marni Berenger.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Alfred; and sons-in-law, Greg Beuseling and Warren Brown.
The family wishes to express their appreciation to the staff at Genesis Senior Living and Genesis Hospice for their care and support; and to Pastor Zach Glenn for his visits and prayers.

Eric M. Noyd, 32°, MSA, 48, of Geneseo, IL, passed away on Thursday, February 21, 2018, surrounded by his loving family, at his home. Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, February 27, at Countryside Christian Church in Port Byron. Pastor Andy Adams will officiate. Cremations rites will be accorded following the funeral service. Visitation will be held on Tuesday, February 26, from 4:00 – 7:00 p.m., at Vandemore Funeral Home & Crematory, Geneseo Chapel. Masonic services will be held at 7 p.m. by the Viola Masonic Lodge. Memorials may be made to the Rock River Christian Camp or the Moline Chapter of Eastern Star.

Eric was born on July 27, 1970, the son of Michael and Linda (Liby) Noyd, in Rock Island, IL. Eric married Jane E. Tjardes, on April 4, 2009 in Urbana, IL. He was employed at Dohrn Transfer Co. in Rock Island as a data analyst. Eric was an Eagle Scout, a member of the Viola Masonic Lodge #577. He was a member of the London Masonic Lodge in Silvis, the Moline Eastern Star, and the Scottish Rite where he was a 32nd MSA. He was an avid St. Louis Cardinals, Pittsburgh Steelers, Chicago Black Hawks, and Fighting Illini fan. He was a fan of all sports. Eric enjoyed brewing beer, watching Star Wars, and Lord of the Rings. Eric especially enjoyed going on cruises with his loving wife, Jane.

Those left to cherish his memory include his wife, Jane; his parents, Michael and Linda of Cambridge, IL; one brother, Travis (Stephanie) of Andover, IL; mother-in-law, Marilyn Tjardes of Foosland, IL; brother-in-law, Phil (Jayne) Tjardes of Gibson City, IL; sister-in-law,  Jan (Larry) Pfeiffer of Carlinville, IL; and nine nieces and nephews.

Eric was preceded in death by his grandparents.

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William Howard Mercer, 81, of Neponset, died, Thursday, February 7, 2019 at Genesis Medical Center, Davenport, IA. Howard was born May 16, 1937 in Galesburg, IL, the son of Stanley and Ruth (Thompson) Mercer. He graduated from Neponset High School with the class of 1955. Howard married Kathleen Hull on December 27, 1974 at the Congregational Church, Sheffield.

Howard is survived by his wife, Kathleen; two sons, Stanley (Audrey) Mercer, Kewanee, Michael (Becky) Mercer, Harrisonburg, VA; two grandchildren, Tyler Mercer, Princeton, Ashley Mercer, Princeton; and numerous cousins. He was preceded in death by his parents.
Howard worked at Martin Engineering in Neponset for several years and later worked at John Deere for 25 years, retiring in 1997. Howard joined the Masons in 1967 and was a 32nd Degree Mason. Howard loved to do woodworking, building and refinishing furniture. He enjoyed working away in the flower garden. Howard was a home body and loved spending time with his dogs. He especially loved spending time with his family and friends.
Visitation will be from 5:00 – 7:00 pm, Tuesday, February 12, 2019 at Schueneman-Tumbleson Funeral Home. A Masonic Service will be at 7:00 pm, following the visitation. There will be no Funeral Services. Burial will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Western Bureau County Food Pantry, Sheffield. Please leave an online condolence for Howard’s family at

David E. Moon, 76, of Annawan, passed away on Saturday, January 19, 2019, at Hammond Henry Hospital, Geneseo with his wife by his side. Funeral Services to celebrate his life will be held at 10:30 a.m. Frida,y January 25, 2019, at Mineral United Methodist Church. Reverend Terry Lancaster will officiate. Visitation for David will be Thursday from 4-7 p.m. at Vandemore Funeral Home & Crematory, Atkinson Chapel. A Masonic Ritual will be conducted by the Walnut Masonic Lodge at 7:00 p.m. Cremation will be accorded following the services. A private inurnment will be held at a later date in the Mineral Cemetery. Memorials may be left to the Mineral-Gold Fire Department or the Annawan-Alba Public Library.
  David was born May 27, 1942, in Kewanee, the son of Dale & Marjorie (Davies) Moon. He was a graduate of Mineral High School, attended Illinois State University for three years, and the University of Illinois for one year. He was united in marriage to Sandra L. Potesak on August 5, 1967. David farmed in rural Mineral Township for 50 years before retiring and moving to Annawan. He was a lifelong member of Mineral United Methodist Church, a 50-year member of the Sheffield Masonic Lodges which has now merged with Walnut Lodge. He truly loved golfing, woodworking, and most of all adored spending time with his family.
  Those left to cherish his memory include his wife, Sandra; children, Scott Moon, Mapleton, IL, Susan (James) Hartford, Arlington, VA, and Laura (Eric) Meyer, Chicago, IL; grandchildren, Amanda Moon, Michael Moon, Lily Hartford, Sebastian Meyer, and Aleksander Meyer.
   David was preceded in death by his parents.

George Gnatovich, 92, of Rock Island, passed away Saturday, January 5, 2019, at Trinity Hospital in Rock Island.
  Funeral services were held at 12:00 p.m., Friday, January 11, 2019 at St. George Greek Orthodox Church, Rock Island. Visitation was from 4-7 p.m., Thursday, January 10, 2019, with a Trisagion service held at 6:30 p.m., at Esterdahl Mortuary & Crematory, Ltd. Entombment will be at Moline Memorial Park. Memorials may be made to American Heart Association.
  George was born on May 27, 1926 in East Moline, the son of Nicholas and Mary (Perkovich) Gnatovich. He married Joy Skiles in 1949 in Moline, and she preceded him in death January 7, 2005.
  Upon graduating East Moline High in 1944, the next day George reported for duty in the Navy and fought in the South Pacific on a Destroyer Escort, the U.S.S. Duffy. George started his career at Tri City Food on 23rd Ave in Moline with his brother, Sam, and then they went on to build and own Highland Park Bowl. They later owned Sammy G Lanes where he retired in 1999. He was a member of St. George Greek Orthodox church. For many decades George, his brother, John, and mother, Mary, religiously would have lunch together every Monday until her passing in 1986. They continued this tradition and then George’s son, Mark, joined upon his retirement in 2012 and continued until George’s recent passing. This grew into what they called the “Monday Lunch Club.” He also loved golfing, bowling, playing cards (especially euchre). George was truly known for his ability to tell jokes. One of his happiest moments was playing free golf at Golfmohr, after turning 90.
  Survivors include his son, Mark Gnatovich, Rock Island; Grandchildren Lee, Mark “Nick”, and Brandy; Great grandchild Devin; Brother     John Gnatovich; Several nieces and nephews.  He was preceded in death by his parents; son, George Jr. and his brother, Sam.
  Memories may be shared online by visiting

Gerald Russell Stephens, 94 of Streator passed away Friday (November 9th).
A visitation was held Wednesday from 9:30 – 11 AM at the Winterrowd Funeral Home. A Masonic ritual was held at 10:45 and funeral services were held at 11 AM at the funeral home. A private family burial will be in the Richland Cemetery in Leonore and serving as pallbearers will be family members.
Gerald was born January 30, 1924 in Clarinda, Iowa to Clarence and Vera (Hulbert) Stephens. He married Melinda M. Richard on January 16, 1944. She preceded him in death on July 9, 2015.
Surviving are daughters Linda (Gene) Kencke of Central Point, Oregon and Janice (George) Wilts of Streator, grandchildren Lansing (Stacy) Kencke, Stephanie (Alex) Hayes, Jackie (Doug) Johnson, Joseph (Rebekah) Kencke, Allison Kencke, Shellie (Chris) Pytel and Tori (Jason) Artman, 17 great-grandchildren.
Gerald is preceded in death by his parents, his wife, great-grandson Dustin Kencke, brother Clarence (Bud) Stephens, sisters Elsie Wolf and Mary Jane Pharr.
He came to Streator in 1942 graduating from Streator High School. Gerald worked for the Burlington RR all of his life giving them 38 years of service starting out as a yard clerk, advancing to rate clerk and promoted to Agent working his way through the ranks to become Head of Operation and Management in the Chicago office the last 13 years before retiring. He was a member of the Streator Masonic Lodge, a 32nd Degree in Moline, a member of the 1st United Methodist Church and the Methodist Men.
The family requested no flowers and memorials to be the donor’s choice.

H. Douglas Bedinger, 88, of Colona, Illinois, died Sunday, November 11, 2018, at home.

 Services are 11:30 a.m. Friday in the Horizon Room at Trimble Funeral Home at Trimble Pointe, 701 12th Street, Moline. Visitation is 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. Thursday with a masonic service at 7:00 p.m. with Doric Lodge #319, AF & AM, presiding. Burial is in Greenview Memorial Gardens. Memorials may be made to the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation or Shriners Hospitals for Children.
   Doug was born January 2, 1930, in Sidell, Illinois, to Rev. Harold and Mildred (Sigmon) Bedinger. He graduated from Galesburg High School and earned a master’s degree in engineering from the University of Oklahoma. He married Joyce Ann Sevey on August 19, 1949, in Stockton, Illinois. She died September 2, 2008.
  He worked for the Department of Defense all over the country, retiring from the U.S. Army Rock Island Command in 1983. He was a part of the original design team for both the Minuteman Missile System and the Patriot Missile System.
  He was a member of Colona United Methodist Church, Gallup Lodge #22, AF & AM, in Gallup, New Mexico, recently receiving his 50-year pin, and Scottish Rite Bodies. He enjoyed fishing, gardening, and being in the yard. Above all else, family was the most important thing to Doug.
  Doug is survived by three children, Anna Marie Cramblett, Douglas (Darlene) Bedinger, and Deborah “Debbie” (Ernie) Manrrique; grandchildren, Michelle (Chris) Baker, Michael (Jennifer) Cramblett, Jassen (Racheal) Manrrique, David (Kristy) Manrrique, Douglas (Mary) Bedinger, Jr., Tim (Corina) Bedinger, and Kirk (Loryl) Bedinger; 12 great-grandchildren; a sister, Betty Lou Schotters; and brothers, Danny (Brenda) Bedinger, David (Ann) Bedinger, and Danny Joe Bedinger. He was preceded in death by his wife, Joyce; and siblings, James, Charles, and Jeannie.
  Condolences may be shared at
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Donald Robert Stephenson, AUGUST 15, 1933 – OCTOBER 30, 2018
It is with great sadness that we announce the loss of Donald, of Nashville, IN. Don was a member of the, ‘Friends of Brown County State Park’. Who touched many hearts with his ever positive outlook on life and his “handyman” can-do spirit. Don was a graduate of Ellettsville High School and retired as a general manager of a stamping shop at a tool and die factory in Elkhart, Indiana. He was a charter member of St. Paul United Methodist Church in Bloomington, 32nd member of the Galesburg, Illinois Free and Accepted Masons and Scottish Rite. He was known as the “Mayor” of Town Hill in Nashville.
Don is survived by his wife Carolyn (Fogleman) Stephenson whom he married 65 years ago in 1953. And his four children: Lou Ann Smith of Galesburg, IL. Vickey Marshall, of Whitestown, IN; sons, Mike (Debbie) Stephenson of Nixa, MO and Mark Stephenson of Pueblo, CO. Don also has 7 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren and a large extended family. He was preceded in death by his parents, his sister, Barbara Lou Cox and two sons-in-law, Chuck Smith and Paul Marshall. May the memories of his smiling face and his always available, “helping hands” ease the pain that so many of his family and friends are feeling. Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Monday at the Day & Deremiah-Frye Funeral Home; 4150 E. Third St. in Bloomington. Burial will follow in Valhalla Memory Gardens. Friends may visit the family on Sunday from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the funeral home. Memorials may be forwarded to the, ‘Friends of Brown County State Park,’ in Don’s memory or to I.U. Health; Bloomington Hospice. Carolyn and family want to thank all of you for the outpouring of support over the many years as a resident and former business owner of Yesterday’s Lore, in the warmhearted, Nashville, Brown County community. We wish you all many Blessings in the years to come. In Don’s memory, Amen.

Dale E. Lawrence, 78, of Atkinson, passed away on Friday, March 02, 2018, at Hammond Henry Hospital in Geneseo, IL. A prayer service will be held at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 6, 2018, at Vandemore Funeral Home & Crematory, Atkinson. Deacon Harley Chaffee will officiate. A visitation will be held prior to the prayer service, from 4:00-7:00 p.m. at the funeral home. Memorials may be left to the Dale Lawrence Memorial Fund. Per his wishes, cremation rites have been accorded.
Dale was born on November 14, 1939, the son of William Leroy and Luella Mae (Freeze) Johanson, in Moline, IL. He was united in marriage to Dixie A. Reed on March 15, 1958, in Milan, IL. Dale worked at John Deere Planter Works for several years before owning and operating the Oakwood Motel for 15 years. He later became an independent truck driver and owner of Lawrence Trucking. He was a member of Stewart Masonic Lodge AF & AM, and Eastern Star. Dale enjoyed trucking, camping, and spending time with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Those left to cherish his memory include, his wife, Dixie, sons, Kurt Lawrence, Atkinson, and Kris (Donna) Lawrence, Hillsdale, daughter, Karen Disterhoft (Ken Glines), Atkinson, nine grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren. Dale is also survived by his brothers, William (Lynn) Lawrence, AZ, and Calvin (Paula) Lawrence, MI, half-brothers, Albert Johanson, Roger Johanson, and Leroy (Brenda) Johanson, and a half-sister, Kathy (Randy) McMean.
Dale was preceded in death by his parents, William and Luella, sister, Irma, and one great-grandson, Sean.

Carl E. Foley, 74, of Moline, passed away Monday, March 19, 2018, at home.
Funeral services will be 10 a.m. Saturday, March 24, 2018, at Rafferty Funeral Home, 2111 1st St. A, Moline. Visitation will be 4-7 p.m. Friday at the funeral home. Burial will be at Moline Memorial Park. A memorial fund has been established.
Carl was born September 15, 1943, in Macon, Mo., the son of Lea and Nava (Ervin) Foley. He married Lois Wooten on December 1, 1963, in Atlanta, Mo.
Carl retired from John Deere Harvester, East Moline, in 2001 after 34 years. He was a member of the UAW 865, East Moline, and the Masonic Lodge 1014, Moline. He enjoyed reading and was everyone’s fix-it man.
Survivors include his wife, Lois; children, Christopher (Tiffany) Foley, Coal Valley, Lisa Contreras, Moline, and Michelle Foley, Blue Grass; grandchildren, Nick, Allie, Emily, Teddy, Gage, Max, Damien, Evan, Noah, Eli and Morgan; great-grandchildren, Amuora and Isabella; and a brother, Damon Foley, Macon, Mo. He was preceded in death by his daughter, Natalie.
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Lloyd E. “Skip” Chick , 79, of East Moline, Illinois, died Monday, October 15, 2018, at Clarissa Cook Hospice House, Bettendorf, Iowa.
Private family services will be at a later date. Cremation will take place at Trimble Crematory, Moline, under the direction of the Cremation Society of the Quad Cities.
Lloyd Earling Chick was born March 16, 1939, in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Lloyd and Alice (Peterson) Chick. He married Linda Brown on September 29, 1967, in Moline. She passed away in 2015.
He was a proud four year veteran of the UN Navy, a switchman, and did miscellaneous jobs for the Rock Island Rail Road, owner and operator for the Quad City Raceway from 1970-1979, journeyman and maintenance mechanic at various operations around the Quad Cities.
He was a member of Rock Island Moose Lodge #190, Rock Island Boat Club, Doric Masonic Lodge #319 and a 32nd Degree member of Valley of Moline Masonic Lodge. Skip enjoyed music, dirt track racing, riding his Harley, boating, and camping where Skip was always seen holding a PBR. Above all of his memberships and hobbies, he loved spending time with his family.
Lloyd is survived by a daughter, Karen (Dennis) Roberts of East Moline; sons, Nick (Shirley) Musick of Elgin Texas, and Scott Thaxton of Hampton; five grandchildren, Eric Roberts, Evan (Shawna Raley) Roberts, Christoper (Hannah) Glaub, Joe (Minnie) Balusek and Jason Magness; six great-grandchildren; Hendrix; Chloe; Lily; David; Bryce and Kaylee, a niece; Melody McGee; and a nephew; Daniel Rogers. He was preceded in death by his wife; parents; a sister, Linda Rogers; and his daughter, Lori Chick.
“Skip’s biggest battle in life was the six times he fought cancer in his last 39 years. He was very strong willed” – Skips family.
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Richard Lee Medd, 92, of Moline, Illinois, died June 15, 2018 following complications of a massive stroke. His beloved wife of 73 years, Alberta (Bert) Medd, was still able to hold his hand and his heart until his last day. As Richard (Dick) passed from one stage of life into another at the Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House, Bettendorf, memories from his many years were being shared across generations and geographical lines. His stories will continue to be told with joy and admiration by his four children, Gary Medd (Jean) of Davenport, James Medd (Sandy) of Nashville, Judy Schuler (Jere) of Cincinnati, Rich Medd (Stacey) of Coralville; ten grandchildren, David Medd, Cynthia Sanger, Christy Medd, Kori Medd, Grant Kilgard, Wayne Kilgard, Celia Schnupp, Gabriel Medd, Kellie Coy, and Jason Schuler; twenty-four great grandchildren; brother, Robert (Nancy) Medd of Iowa City; and all those who were lucky enough to be his family member, colleague, or friend. Dick was preceded in death by his parents, Cecil and Mildred Medd, and his brothers, William, Ralph, and Ronald Medd.
  Dick will be honored with pride each time we: rake if there are leaves, play if there is a piano, listen if there is music, pay if there is a bill, pick up if there is a phone call, invent if there is an idea, indulge if there is a Blizzard, and leave if it is time to go home.
Richard Medd was a pioneer in the Dairy Queen franchise, helping to develop, protect and promote the DQ brand nationally, and spread soft serve ice cream and jobs across the Midwest and the eastern part of the United States. Although his accomplishments as a businessman (Dairy Queen, Medd-O-Lane Dairy), World War II Army Air Corps Veteran (B-29 navigator), musician (pianist and trombonist), and thirty-second degree Mason were numerous, Dick was best at being a husband, dad, and grandpa. We will celebrate all he was and all he continues to be at a visitation from 4 pm to 7 pm on Thursday, June 21, 2018 at St. Paul Lutheran Church, Davenport. A Celebration of Life service will be held at 10 am on Friday, June 22, 2018 at St. Paul Lutheran Church, Davenport with burial at National Cemetery, Rock Island to follow. Wheelan-Pressly Funeral Home and Crematory is assisting the family with arrangements. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to St. Paul Lutheran Church, Davenport, or to the Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House, Bettendorf.

Richard B. Adams, 87, of Galesburg, died at 8:53 p.m. Wednesday, December 27, 2017 in the emergency room of OSF St. Mary Medical Center.
He was born January 10, 1930, in Galesburg, the son of Everett K. and Mildred G. (Faulkner) Adams. He married Dorothy I. Boynton on May 8, 1954, in Galesburg.
He is survived by his wife of nearly 64 years, Dorothy; two sons, Michael N. (Dianna) Adams of Knoxville and Dr. James K. (Kelly) Adams of Peoria; a daughter, Cynthia K. (Robert) Cannon of Galesburg; two grandsons, Michael C. (Courtney) Adams and Steven A. (Hannah) Godsil; and one great grandchild on the way. He was preceded in death by his parents; and three sisters, Mary Way, Nell Rose Knowles, and Cecile Adams.
Richard began working for the CB&Q Railroad as a fireman on December 31, 1951. He went on to become an engineer, a road foreman, a master mechanic, and finally regional superintendent of locomotives (field) before retiring June 1, 1987 from Burlington Northern Railroad.
He graduated from Galesburg High School in 1947 and attended the University of Illinois. Richard was of Methodist faith, had been a Mason since 1953, and was a member of the Galesburg Railroad Museum. He enjoyed gardening and maintained a yard that belonged in Better Homes and Gardens. He dearly loved his family and was a wonderful father.
Richard served in the United States Army for two years in Korea. He participated in the Invasion of Inchon, the Battle of Seoul, and the Battle of Chosin Reservoir.
Cremation will be accorded. Private family graveside service will be Tuesday, January 2, 2018 in Wataga Cemetery. Rev. Rick Warren will officiate. There will be no visitation. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Galesburg Railroad Museum. Hinchliff-Pearson-West Funeral Directors and Cremation Services of Galesburg is handling arrangements for the family. Online condolences may be made at

Ill. Bro. Robert O. Ralston, 33°

Robert was born on October 8, 1938 and passed away on Monday, September 3, 2018.
Robert was a resident of Ohio at the time of passing.
Graduate of University of Cincinnati (BBA) and Xavier University (MBA).
He was active in the Scottish Rite Masons and led the Scottish Rite Northern Masonic Jurisdiction as Sovereign Grand Commander from 1993-2003. Visitation at 10 am on Friday, September 7, 2018, at Mason Christian Village chapel. Burial to follow at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Montgomery.
Ill. Brother Ralston was Sovereign Grand Commander from 1993 to 2003.

Joe L. “Mick” Vrban, 78, of Colona, died Sunday, September 30, 2018, at UnityPoint Health-Trinity Rock Island.
Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m., Friday, October 5, 2018, at Esterdahl Mortuary & Crematory, Ltd., 6601-38th Avenue, Moline. Visitation will be 4-7 p.m., Thursday, October 4, at the funeral home, where a Masonic Service will be held at 7 p.m. Burial will be at Dayton Cemetery, Colona, Il. Memorials may be made to the Shriner’s Hospitals for Children or the Clement Masonic Lodge #680. All need to use 60th Street for access to the funeral home.
Joe L. was born on August 11, 1940, in Moline, IL, the son of Joe F. and Elinor (Robinson) Vrban. Friends and family called him Mick, which is the nickname his sister Carol started using for him when he was just a baby.
He graduated from United Township High School and enlisted in the U.S. Army, serving in Germany and Washington D.C. After being honorably discharged at the rank of Sergeant, he served four more years of reserve duty.
Mick married Sandra Frame Morris in 1968 in Silvis, Ill., happily choosing to be dad to Sandra’s four children. Mick and Sandy added three more children and they raised their family in Green River, Ill.
He proudly worked for John Deere Harvester Works and retired in 1997 after 30 years as a welder.
Mick was an active member and former Worshipful Master at Clement Masonic Lodge #680, Colona; a member of the Colona/Green Rock American Legion, where he proudly served on the memorial rifle squad honoring other veterans. He was a Boy Scout troop leader when his boys were younger.
Mick was a proud, private man, who loved his family, community, and country. He thoroughly enjoyed time with his grandchildren and shared simple joys with them – fishing on the banks of the canal, worm hunting, backyard archery, whittling sticks, coin collecting.
He protected the earth to preserve its beauty and fruit for future generations.
Survivors include sons, Dean (Brenda), Eldon, Missouri, Scott (Dawn), Colona, IL, Carl (Vicky), Pottsboro, TX; daughters Sherry (Joe) Lambert, Carbon Cliff, IL, Jennifer (Jason) Kneen, Moline, and Mikki Vrban (Brian) Krantz, Moline; more than 30 grandchildren and great grandchildren; brother James L. “Jocko” (Carole), and sister Carol Stout. He was preceded in death by his parents, wife Sandra, son Jim, and granddaughter Amy Lynn.
Memories may be shared on the tribute wall.

Ill. Norman R. Buecker, MSA, 33°, 93, of Springfield, passed away Monday, October 1, 2018 at Heritage Health. He was born January 2, 1925 in Springfield to Fredrick William and Adda Beth (Bradley) Buecker. He married LaDean Spence on February 10, 1951 and she preceded him in death on February 26, 2014.
Survivors include two children, Nancy Beth Buecker of Springfield and Bradley Joe (Nancy Pistorius) Buecker of Lawrence, Kansas; one grandchild, Alyssa Buecker; one sister, Ramona June Goldstein of Springfield and several nieces, nephews, and cousins.
He is preceded in death by his parents; wife; two brothers, Harold “Dick” Buecker and Matthew Dale “Crit” Buecker and one sister, Mable Staley.
Norman was a World War II Army Veteran. He was the owner and operator of Norman’s Plumbing and Heating.
Norman was a member of Scottish Rite, York Rite and Ansar Shrine.
Visitation: 10:00 am–12:00 pm Thursday, October 4, 2018 at Staab Funeral Home – Springfield.
Funeral Service: 12:00 pm Thursday, October 4, 2018 at Staab Funeral Home – Springfield with Reverend Dr. Joe Eby officiating.
Burial will follow at Oak Ridge Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Scottish Rite Valley of Springfield, AASR.
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Below are more details and a portion of Ill. Brother Buecker’s Masonic history:
Norman R. Buecker, M.S.A., 33°
January 2, 1925 – October 1, 2018
Services: Staab Funeral Home
1109 S. Fifth Street
Springfield, Illinois
Thursday, October 4, 2018
Visitation: 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon
Masonic Service: 12:00 noon
Religious Services thereafter – Reverend Joe Eby, ICOD Prior
Internment at Oakridge Cemetery, Springfield
Upon conclusion of services
Celebration and fellowship at
Springfield Masonic Center
1020 Rickard Road
Springfield, Illinois
Grand Master of A.F. & A.M.
1979 – 1980
Elected to received Meritorious Service Award June 1, 1965
Coroneted a S.G.I.G., 33° September 1, 1970
Active Member, Supreme Council September 29, 1981
Deputy for State of Illinois 1992 – 2000
Active Emeritus September 26, 2000 – October 1, 2018
Visitation 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon
Masonic Service 12:00 noon
Religious service to follow
Internment Oak Ridge Cemetery, Springfield, Illinois

Harold Roy Thompson, 88, of Geneseo, formerly of rural Annawan, passed away on Sunday, November 21, 2010 at Hammond-Henry Hospital Extended Care Unit, Geneseo with his family by his side. Funeral services celebrating his life will be held 10:00 am Wednesday, November 24, at Vandemore Funeral Home Ltd, Atkinson. Rev. Terry Lancaster will officiate. Burial will be in the Hooppole Cemetery. Visitation for Harold will be from 4 – 8 pm Tuesday at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers the family requests that memorials may be left to the Harold Thompson Memorial Fund, Hooppole Cemetery Association, or Annawan Community United Methodist Church.
Harold was born on October 12, 1922 in Alba Township the son of James E. & Celia (Boyd) Thompson. He was united in marriage to Marsha Pysson in 1979, they later divorced. Harold was a lifetime grain & livestock farmer, farming in rural Annawan, Atkinson & Alba Township retiring in 2000. He was a member of the Annawan Community United Methodist Church, and the Masonic Lodge, Hooppole for many years. Harold was a licensed pilot for many years and enjoyed flying his airplanes. He also enjoyed dancing, hunting and fishing trips to Canada and especially spending time with his grandchildren.
Survivors include his daughter and spouse Michelle & Bryan Anderson, Galesburg, IL; his son Michael Thompson, Geneseo, IL; three grandchildren Oliver, Celia, and Edmund Anderson, five sisters and spouse Mary Whisker, Toulon; Lucille McCune, Mineral; Barbara Young, Geneseo; Beth & Neil Johnson, Galva; Judy Hansen, Utica, IL; a sister-in-law Odetta Thompson, Annawan; numerous nieces & nephews and a special friend Helen Claeys, Geneseo.
He was preceded in death by his parents, three brothers Orin, Calvin, & James, and one sister Dorothy Koss.

Donald M. Tomsic, 81, of Kewanee, died Thursday, September 13, 2018 at 5:00 am at Hillcrest Home in Geneseo. Don was born November 18, 1936 in Kewanee, the son of Martin and Myrtle (Cole) Tomsic. He graduated from Kewanee High School with the class of 1954. After a stent in the Army he received an Associates Degree in business and accounting. He married Betty Dexter on August 9, 1958 at the First Methodist Church, Kewanee, she survives.
Don is also survived by their children, James (Patricia) Tomsic, Charleston, SC, David (Karen) Tomsic, Kewanee, and Susan (Steven) Brody, Kewanee; two granddaughters, Samantha (fiancé, Jimmy Kida) and Claire Brody; sister, Shirley (Duane) Burnett, Geneseo; brother, John (Pat) Tomsic, Kewanee; and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents.
Don served in the US Army from 1955 to 1957, at the time of discharge he was a Specialist 3rd Class. He was also in the Kewanee National Guard. He retired from Komatsu in Peoria in 1999, where he was a purchasing agent.
Don was a member of the First United Methodist Church, Kewanee. Don was an Eagle Scout-Silver Beaver, Order of the Arrow (Vigil), Wood Badge, Scoutmaster, Assistant Scoutmaster, and Troop Committee Chairman with the Boy Scouts of America. He led three expeditions to Philmont Scout Ranch, NM. Don was also a Master Mason, past Master, past Priest of York Rite, past Commander of Knights Templar, past Master of Fort Armstrong, treasurer of Masonic Foundation for 15 years for the Kewanee Lodge 159.
Don spent 30 years on the WHS football chain gang. Kewanee BI-Centennial King, and beard contest winner. Don organized the Cub Scout Unit at Belle Alexander School. He was a PTA President at Belle. He was also a member of the Model “T” Ford and Model “A” Clubs of America. He was a board member of the Saxon Community Cemetery Association and the First United Methodist Church. Don especially enjoyed spending time with his wife Betty of 60 years, children and grandchildren.
Memorial Services will be at 11:00 am, Monday, September 17, 2018 at the First United Methodist Church, Kewanee. Pastor Kevin Drane will officiate. Burial will be in the Saxon Community Cemetery. Military Rites will be accorded by the Kewanee Veterans Council. Visitation will be from 5:00-7:00 pm on Sunday, September 16, 2018 at the Schueneman-Tumbleson Funeral Home. A Masonic Service will be at 6:45 pm on Sunday, September 16, 2018 at the funeral home. Memorials may be made to the Saxon Community Cemetery Association, Boy Scout Troop 180, or First United Methodist Church, Kewanee. Please leave an online condolence for Don’s family at

Donald E. Hofer, 93, of Aledo, formerly of Taylor Ridge, passed away on Tuesday, July 5, 2016 at Genesis Senior Living, Aledo. Services for Mr. Hofer will be 10:30 am, Friday at the Wheelan-Pressly Funeral Home & Crematory, Reynolds. Visitation will be Thursday from 4 to 8 pm, at the funeral home. Burial will be in the Reynolds Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the Reynolds United Methodist Church or to the Reynolds Fire Department.
Donald was born on April 3, 1923 in Taylor Ridge, a son of Everett and Lucy Zeitler Hofer. He married Lucille M. “May” Osborn on May 1, 1943 in Taylor Ridge. She preceded him in death on December 19, 2008. Donald was a lifelong farmer in Taylor Ridge, retiring in 1988. He was a member of the Reynolds United Methodist Church, Andalusia Masonic Lodge No. 516 AF & AM, Order of the Eastern Star Chapter 617, and the Rock Island County Farm Bureau. Donald had served on the Rock Ridge School Board and had served as the Edgington Township Supervisor.
Survivors include his children, Carol (Ron) Parchert, Buffalo Prairie, Donna Hayes, Trenton, Florida, Darrel (Judy) Hofer, Reynolds, Daniel (Janice) Hofer, Reynolds, Ann Marie (Kevin) Keller, Reynolds, Neil (Carolyn) Hofer, Guttenberg, Iowa; 13 grandchildren; 23 great grandchildren; three great-great grandchildren; a sister, Kathrine Osborn, Reynolds; a sister in law, Katie Hofer, Taylor Ridge.
Donald was preceded in death by his parents; wife, May; a granddaughter, Connie Hofer, sons in law, Al Howell and Mike Hayes, brother, Virgil Hofer; sister, Evelyn Burton; brothers in law, Willard Burton and Ben Osborn.
Online condolences may be left for the family at

Herbert C. Spahn, 100, of Moline, Illinois, died Monday, September 10, 2018, in Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House, Bettendorf, Iowa.
Visitation is 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday in the Horizon Room at Trimble Funeral Home at Trimble Pointe, 701 12th Street, Moline. A Masonic funeral service will follow at 4 p.m. with Doric Lodge #319, AF & AM, Moline, presiding. Funeral services are 10:30 a.m. Monday at the funeral home. Burial is in Greenview Memorial Gardens, East Moline. Friends are invited to a funeral luncheon at CityView Celebrations at Trimble Pointe following the burial. Memorials may be made to Doric Lodge or Clarissa Cook Hospice.
Herbert Casper Spahn was born November 6, 1917, in Chicago, to Jacob and Elizabeth (Dietzel) Stahl, and raised by his mother and step-father, Albert Spahn. He married Nellie Johnson on December 31, 1938, in Moline. She died October 31, 1988. He served in the US Navy during WW II, and was a machinist at International Harvester East Moline Works for 37 years, retiring in 1978. Herb was active in the Masonic Fraternity, where he was a longtime member of Moline Lodge #1014, AF & AM, now Doric Lodge #319; Scottish Rite Bodies, Valley of Moline; Kaaba Shrine; Moline Chapter #258, Order of Eastern Star; and Zal Grotto. He belonged to American Legion Post #569 in Milan, and was passionate about vegetable gardening.
Herb is survived by children, Gary Spahn and his wife Sandra of Perkinston, Mississippi, Daniel Spahn and Marilee Spahn, both of Moline; grandchildren and spouses, Brian and Kim Spahn, Jonette and Clay Gilley, Luanne and Dan Wise, and Sonnet Busen Greene and Brady Greene; four great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild. He was preceded in death by his wife and three brothers, Richard, Ernest, and Victor Spahn; and a great-grandson.

Robert Earl Downing, 92, of Taylor Ridge passed away April 24, 2017 at his home.

Graveside memorial services with military honors were at Rock Island National Cemetery, Arsenal Island.  Memorials may be made to Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church, Rock Island

Robert was born March 11, 1925 in Rock Island, a son of John L Downing and Grace M Durling. He graduated from Rock Island High School in 1943 and attended Augustana College where he held the high jump record for many years.

He enlisted in the Army Air Corps where he attained the rank of 2LT and served as a navigator for the 64th Bomber Squadron. He married Reita Katherine Amy on February 10, 1951, and they enjoyed 65 wonderful years of marriage together. They loved to square dance and spent their winters in Arizona, living in Sunlife on “D” street. He was an avid Cubs and Hawkeyes fan, and enjoyed bowling, golfing and hiking. He enjoyed eating at Maid-rite, Whitey’s and Harris Pizza. His family would often mail him a care package during their winters in Arizona. After his military service he worked as a clerk for the Rock Island Post Office and retired after 34 years.

Survivors include: brother-in-law, Richard H. Amy, Milan; nephew, Richard (Kay) Amy, Illinois City; niece, Reita (Michael) Kuster, Taylor Ridge; 5 great nephews; 1 great niece; and 12 proud great greats. He was especially close to two great nephews, Rickey (Krystle) and Matt (Chelsea) Kuster, of Andalusia; and great niece, Gail (DJ) Hahn of Rock Island. He was preceded in death by his wife, Reita, parents, brother and sister-in-law, John R. And Evelyn Downing and his beloved dog Snoopy.

Lloyd R. Dyer, 92, of Kewanee died at 9:30 a.m. Friday, June 8, 2018, at his home.
Funeral services were held at 11 a.m. Thursday, June 14, at Rux Funeral Home in Kewanee. The Rev. Joe Schmidt will officiate. Visitation was held from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 13, with Masonic services at 6:45 p.m. Burial was in Evergreen Memorial Gardens in rural Kewanee.

Memorials may be directed to the First Christian Church in Kewanee.

He was born on June 8, 1926, in Canton, IL, the son of Uri and Verna (Macklin) Dyer. He married Irene L. Asbell on December 26, 1948, in Kewanee, and she preceded him in death on June 26, 2004.

Survivors include two sons, Robert (Linda) Dyer of St. Charles, MO, and Bradley (Shirley) Dyer of Kewanee; a daughter, Peggy (Richard) Bennett of Kewanee; six grandchildren; twenty-eight great-grandchildren; and four great-great-grandchildren.
He was also preceded in death by his parents and a brother, Herb Dyer.

Lloyd graduated from Kewanee High School in 1944. He served his country in the U.S. Navy after World War II. He had worked in the Forestry Division as a tree trimmer for Illinois Power for 35 years until his retirement. He also operated the Dairy Queen from 1967-1973. He helped develop the Kewanee Stage Coach/Pony Express Trail with Gus DeToye. He was a member of the First Christian Church and the Kewanee Masonic Lodge. He was an avid sports fan and animal lover who enjoyed hunting, fishing, golf and following the Chicago Cubs, especially their World Series win. He had marshaled at various golf outings over the years, had been a Boy Scout leader and was inducted into the Kewanee High School Athletic Hall of Fame in 2017 for football. He also enjoyed visiting with people and being a part of the McDonald’s crew and especially following the events of his grandchildren.

This obituary may be viewed and private condolences left at

Memorial services for Eli “Mac” R. McDermand, 91, of Bettendorf, will be 11 a.m. Saturday, June 13, at St. Alban’s Episcopal Church in Davenport. The family will greet friends from 10 a.m. until services time at the church. Mr. McDermand passed away Sunday, May 31, 2015, at Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House in Bettendorf. Cunnick-Collins Mortuary and Cremation Service assisted the family with arrangements.

Eli Ray McDermand was born Sept. 15, 1923, in Moline, the son of Carroll and Henrietta (DeReu) McDermand. On June 21, 1958, he married Jacquelyn Bowman in Davenport. She preceded him in death in April of 2015. Mr. McDermand worked in the personnel department at IH Farmall in Rock Island for more than 44 years. He was an active member since 1948 of the Valley of Moline Scottish Rite, attaining the level of 32nd-degree Scottish Rite Mason. He was also a Master Mason within Roosevelt Lodge No. 646 in Davenport. For more than 50 years, he served on the board of directors at IH Mississippi Valley Credit Union. Mr. McDermand was an active member of St. Alban’s Episcopal Church. He was well-known to many, outside on his corner or buzzing around Bettendorf, happily smoking his pipe.

He is survived by a daughter: Kim (Dan) Thompson, LeClaire; and two grandchildren: Brian Erichsen, Des Moines, and Katie Thompson, Davenport.

In addition to his parents and wife, he was preceded in death by his sister, Henrietta.

Noted Midwestern raconteur Omer L. Baumgartner passed away at this home in Ames, Iowa on Tuesday, Feb. 8, 2011. He was 90 years old. Mr. Baumgartner had lived a long and passionate life dedicated to rambunctious performances and dairy products.

Born on a dairy farm in Walnut, Ill., Baumgartner was prodigious with the movement of manure from an early age, and exercising these and other talents, earned recognition for his National 4-H Grand Champion Dairy Heifer, Clementine’s Ramona, in 1930 at the age of 10. After this debut, and as the Depression raged, Baumgartner cut his teeth in the livestock industry while attending hundreds of county and state fairs, showing and selling cattle, frying oysters, skinning rabbits, and drinking whiskey. While still a freshman at the University of Illinois, he successfully quelled the great dairy upraising of 1938, averting a desperate ice cream shortage in Chicago, and was immediately recruited, without finishing college, by the state’s Guernsey Breeders Association as a field agent.

Despite never learning to cook anything other than fried oysters, Baumgartner attained the rank of captain during World War II for running mess halls feeding over 5,000 in Tennessee and Alabama for the Army Air Corps. He was wildly popular with the troops for his mess hours bongo drum performances accompanied by dancing girls. Baumgartner notably worked for L.S. Heath and Company, running the dairy division and inventing Heath Bar ice cream in 1951. He also co-ran Wilkinson’s Office Supplies with his wife Jattie Wilkinson Baumgartner, serving one-third of the state of Illinois and parts of Iowa. Baumgartner disliked vegetables his whole life. Despite consuming more than 2,000 pounds of butter, he never suffered from any kind of heart disease. His last meal was ice cream.

Baumgartner is survived by his daughters, Donna Prizgintas in Ames, Iowa, and Mary Baumgartner Levner in Portsmith, Va.; and grandchildren Diana Prizgintas in New Zealand, Jack Levner in New York, Arion Thiboumery in Minnesota, and Stephanie Levner in New York; and great-grandchildren Max Prizgintas and Ada Levner.

Memorials may be directed to: Red Oak United Methodist Church, Walnut, Ill.

Robert W. Clements, 86, of Springfield, Ill., passed away Sunday, Jan. 17, 2016, at Memorial Medical Center.

He was born March 13, 1929, in Mt. Auburn, the son of Cleatis and Myrtle (Young) Clements. He married Wilma I. Prior on April 21, 1950, in Mechanicsburg. She preceded him in death on Aug. 5, 2013.

Robert retired from Rock Island Arsenal in 1984 after 33 years. He was a Marine PFC during WWII. Bob was a past master of the Mt. Auburn and Illiopolis Masonic Lodge where he recently received his 50 year membership pin. He was also a longtime member of the Ansar Shriners.

Bob and Wilma were well-known in the standard bred trotters racing community. They loved spending time on their farm in Missouri and going to any farm sale or auction he could find.

He was preceded in death by his parents; five sisters: Velma Brown, Maxine Hays, Cleata Mae Hall, Delores Brown, and Barbara Sharp; and one brother, James Clements.


Surviving are one sister, Patty J. Hunt of Lincoln, Ill.; three sisters-in-law: Mary Grace Prior (Charles, deceased), Shirley Prior (Earl, deceased), Barbara Clements (James); numerous nephews, nieces and cousins; “adopted” daughter, Bonnie Seals (Harold) and her daughters, Tara Maas, Tonya Torres, Jessica Bollman, and Bonnie’s three grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: Shriners Children’s Hospital in St. Louis.

C.J. Brewer, 102, of Louisville, Ky., died Monday Aug. 17, 2015, at Jefferson Manor.

Visitation was at Pearson Funeral Home, 149 Breckenridge Lane, Louisville. A private family burial took place Friday, Aug. 21, in Litchfield, Mich.

He was in manufacturing management at International Harvester in Rock Island and in Louisville, where he retired.

C. J. was a member of the Kosair Shiners in Louisville and Kaaba Shriners in Davenport. He was a member of Beechwood Baptist Church.

He is survived by his son, Clifford James Brewer; daughter, Betty Maye Folks; stepson, Michael Bewley (Ruth); stepdaughter, Patricia Bewley Coyle; grandchildren, James D. Brewer, Suzanne M. Harms, Patricia A. Dickson, Rick Folks, Ken Folks and Luanne Holeva. He was loved and will be missed by his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Kenneth L. Bland, age 75, of Edgerton, died on Tuesday, March 8, 2016, at
home surrounded by his family. He was born in Sandwich, IL on June 21, 1940,
the son of John and Florence (Johnson) Bland. The family moved from
Sandwich, IL to Morrison, IL when Ken was 16yrs old. He was a 1958 graduate
of Morrison High School and after graduation served in the U.S. Navy Air
Corps as a Navigator. After coming home from the military Ken worked for the
White Side County Sherriff’s Dept. and was also a volunteer fireman. He
moved to the South Beloit/Janesville area in the early 1970’s and worked for
RD Systems as an Electrical Engineer for over 20 yrs, helping design
machines that made batteries and had also worked as a Graphic Designer for
Parker Pen. Ken married Charlotte F. (Fields) Nelson on May 6, 1990, in
Janesville and the couple moved to Edgerton. He was a member of Rock Valley
Woodcarvers, Loyal Order of the Moose and the Masonic Temple as a 32rd
Degree Mason. Ken enjoyed playing in pool leagues, fishing, hunting, golfing
and wood carving.

He is survived by his wife, Charlotte of Edgerton; 2 children; Kenny (Lynn)
Bland of Lone Tree, IA and Michelle (Tom) Hermann of Coralville, IA; 3
grandchildren; KJ (Kayla) Bland, Heather Bland and Ella Hermann; 2
step-daughters; Dee (JR) Sheldon of Janesville and Joni Nelson of
Janesville; 2 step-grandchildren; Sara Race and Otica (PJ Hanson) Hagen; 2
step-great grandchildren, Lauren Strang and Kyrah Hagen; 4 siblings: Richard
(Irma) Bland of Fulton, IL, Jack (Susan) Bland of Morrison, IL, Dennis Bland
of Rock Island, IL and David (Chris) Bland of Pensacola, FL. He was preceded
in death by his parents, and great-granddaughter, Kayla Strang.

A Masonic Service was held at 12:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 19, 2016, at
held on Saturday from 10:00 a.m. until Noon at the funeral home. Memorials
may be made to the family. For on-line obituary and condolences:

Richard L. Eaton, 76, of Coal Valley, Illinois, died on Thursday, September
15, 2016, in his residence, from complications of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s

Services are 10:00 a.m. Tuesday at Trimble Funeral Home, 1700 1st Street,
Coal Valley, Illinois. Burial is in Coal Valley Cemetery. Visitation is 4 to
7 p.m. Monday at the funeral home, where Sherman Lodge #535, Orion, AF & AM,
will conduct Masonic funeral services at 6:30 p.m. Monday. In lieu of
flowers, memorials may be made to ALS Association, Greater Chicago Chapter.

Richard Lloyd Eaton was born January 7, 1940, in Milan, Illinois, to Charles
McKinley and Lou Dollie (Milburn) Eaton. He was raised by his father and
step-mother, Edna, He married Shirley Tisdale on May 29, 1958, in Moline.
She died December 15, 1994. He was a self-employed plastering contractor,
operating Richard L. Eaton Plastering for over 40 years, retiring in 2004.
He was the master plasterer of the Quad Cities, and taught younger
plasterers to “do it right,” many of whom now own their own plastering
businesses. He was a man of many talents and interests. He loved the
outdoors and gardening, was the “go-to” guy in his neighborhood and was
willing to help anyone. He was an avid Chicago Cubs and Bears fan, and
enjoyed visiting the gambling boats.

Dick is survived by two daughters and three sons-in-law, Lisa and Jeff
Kapple of Silvis, Illinois, Tracy and Dave Paarmann of DeWitt, Iowa, and
Randall Jasper of Coal Valley; seven grandchildren; six great-grandchildren;
his step-mother, Edna Kuehl of Rock Island; four sisters, Peggy Hays of
South Carolina, Pearl Walker of Alabama, Pat Chance of East Moline, and
Cindy Eaton of Milan; and his partner, Gloria Stiles of Orion. He was
preceded in death by his wife, Shirley; a daughter, Penny Jasper; and his
brother, Charles Eaton.

Lee Roy Jones, 87, of Muscatine, passed away on Tuesday, November, 7, 2017,
at his home. Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, November
11, 2017, at the Geo. M. Wittich-Lewis Home for Funeral and Cremation
Services with Rev. Darryl Erickson officiating. Entombment will be held at
the Muscatine Memorial Park Cemetery Community Garden Mausoleum. Visitation
for Lee Roy will be 4-7 p.m. Friday, November 10, 2017, at the funeral home.
Memorials may be directed to the Spring Valley Bible Camp in Lee Roy’s name.
Sympathy notes may be left for the family at

Lee Roy Jones was born on December 10, 1929, in Columbus Junction, Iowa, the
son of Roy Evans Ellsworth and Lula Anna (Connor) Jones. On February 26,
1960, Lee Roy was united in marriage to Dorothy Marilyn Lippens in Rock
Island, Illinois. He graduated in a class of four from Grandview High School
and was employed at International Harvester Farmall for 33 years. Lee Roy’s
greatest sadness came at the loss of his daughter, Marsha, when she was 29
years of age in a vehicular accident.

Lee Roy is survived and lovingly remembered by his wife, Dorothy of
Muscatine; son, Robert Lee Jones and wife, Penny of Muscatine; daughter,
Lisa Smock and husband, Rod of Muscatine; grandchildren, Monica Horchem,
Jessica Jones, Joshua Jones and his wife, Megan, Kayla Carlsten and her
husband, Jeremy, Matthew Calvert, Brody Smock and his wife, Melissa, and
Rory Smock; 11 great-grandchildren; and five nieces and nephews.

Royce A. “Buzz” Stenzel, 83, of rural Cambridge, passed away on December 30,
2017, at Hammond-Henry Hospital, Long Term Care Unit. A funeral service will
be held at 11:00 a.m. Thursday, January 4, 2018, at First Lutheran Church in
Geneseo, IL. Reverend Laura Kamprath will officiate. Burial will follow at
Oakwood Cemetery in Geneseo. Visitation will be held 9:30-11:00 a.m. on
Thursday, an hour and a half prior to the funeral service, at the church and
a Masonic ritual will be held at 11:00 a.m. prior to the funeral service by
Stewart Lodge No. 92 AF&AM. Memorials may be directed to First Lutheran
Church or Geneseo Humane Society. Vandemore Funeral Home & Crematory,
Geneseo, is assisting with these arrangements.

Royce was born on July 24, 1934, the son of Roy and Margaret (Swanson)
Stenzel, in Geneseo, IL. He was united in marriage to Sharon D. Barritt on
October 18, 1953 at First Lutheran Church, where he was a lifelong member.
Royce farmed in Munson Township for over 60 years and was always willing to
lend a helping hand to his neighbors and friends. He enjoyed spending time
with his family, friends and dogs, wood working and he was an Iowa Hawkeye
fan. He was a member of the Henry County Farm Bureau, Henry County
Genealogical Society, Henry County Historical Society, Bishop Hill Heritage
Society, a member of Scottish Rite, Eastern Star. He had been a Mason since
1957 and a perpetual member of Stewart Lodge No. 92, Geneseo.

Those left to cherish his memory include his wife Sharon, daughters Susan
(Ronald) Hucke, Glendale, AZ and Judith Stenzel, St. Louis, MO, niece
Deborah (Scott) Hawkins and nephew Rodger (Stephanie) Rickman.

Curtis Eli Richardson, 73 of Aledo, died Tuesday, May 16, 2017 at Genesis Medical Center, Aledo. Military Graveside services will be Monday at 12:00 Noon at the National Cemetery, Rock Island Arsenal. Visitation is Monday from 9:00 to 10:30 AM, with Masonic Rites at 10:30 AM at Speer Funeral Home, Aledo.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Curtis Richardson memorial fund or the Mercer County VFW Post #1571.

Curtis was born on December 12, 1943 in Mercer County, Illinois. Curtis served his country in the United States Navy for over 24 years. He married Diane Trial on April 13, 2002 in Aledo, Illinois.

Curtis was a man of many talents, especially enjoyed woodworking and electrical jobs. He was employed with Deane Frye Construction for many years and with the former Contel Telephone Company from 1968 to 1995. Curtis was a 50 year member of the Aledo Masonic Lodge #252 and Order of the Eastern Star #126. He was also a member of the Mercer County VFW Post #1571 and the American Legion, Post #121. Curtis was a Die-Hard Chicago Cub Fan, and enjoyed seeing them win the World Series. He also enjoyed watching the Chicago Bears, Nascar and spending time with Sir Walter, his canine companion.

Curtis is survived by his wife, Diane; daughter: Tammy Friedel and fiancé, Adam Douglas of Aledo; Granddaughter, C. J. Friedel of Waukesha, WI; siblings: George Richardson of Tennessee and Ardeen Phillips and Judith Richardson, both of Davenport; special friends: Marie Burrill and family and Martha, Kevin & Katie Fuller. He was preceded in death by his mother, Melvina (Jump) Richardson; Son, Tony Richardson and special friends: Darrell Burrill and Kenny Fuller.

Samuel T. “Sam” Nelson, 87, of rural Aledo, passed away Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2017, at UnityPoint Health-Trinity Rock Island.

Funeral services will be Saturday at 11 a.m. at Speer Funeral Home, Aledo. Burial will be at Hamlet Cemetery. Visitation is today from 4 to 8 p.m. at the funeral home. Memorials may be made to the Hamlet Cemetery or Buffalo Prairie Presbyterian Church.

Son of Lytle Nelson and Frances Fuhr Nelson, Sam was born April 22, 1929, in the house where he lived all his life. He married Geneva Johnson, of Edgington, on April 10, 1955.

Sam farmed his whole life, first with his father and then with his son, Dennis. On July 4, 1940, he helped his father open Lake Nelson, a man-made lake for fishing, swimming and boating. The property included a roller skating rink, an outdoor movie screen, a track for car races and a baseball diamond in the middle of the track. The popular recreation complex closed in 1952 when Sam entered the U.S. Navy.

He was a member of the Buffalo Prairie Presbyterian Church and the Buffalo Prairie Masonic Lodge. He served on the Mercer County Board and was a Duncan Township trustee. Sam also served on the Board of Directors of the National Bank of Aledo, the Buffalo Prairie State Bank and Hamlet Mutual Insurance.

 Sam is survived by his wife, Geneva; his children, Dennis (Cindy) Nelson, Joy, Laura (Ed) Rivas, Naperville, Kathy (Steve) Shirley, Frisco, Texas, and Samuel T. Nelson III, Naperville; grandchildren, Alex Rivas, Burbank, Calif., and Barbara Rivas, Naperville; and special friend, Sheridan Hank. Sam was preceded in death by his parents; his sister, Drucilla; and a son, Bryan.

LeRoy Muffler, 90.  Roy was born on June 2, 1923 and passed away on Tuesday, June 4, 2013.

LeRoy was a resident of Serena, Illinois at the time of passing.

LeRoy was married to Diane.

Funeral Service were at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, June 8, 2013, at Ottawa Funeral Home with Rev. Cynthia Zolk and Fr. John Waugh officiating. Visitation will be from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. on Friday, June 7, with Masonic Services. Burial will be in West Serena Cemetery with Military Services.

In Memoriam William M. Myers 1936-2018 A beloved husband father brother and friend William M. “Bill” Myers passed away peacefully on Friday March 23 2018 at home in Huntley IL surrounded by his family. Born in Davenport IA on June 17 1936 he was a graduate of Culver Military Academy in Culver IN. He earned a degree in Chemistry from Knox College in Galesburg IL where he was a member of Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity. He served in the U.S. Army for 8 years as a Captain Infantry Unit Commander and Platoon Leader. First stationed at Ft. Benning GA his service took him to Vietnam early in the conflict and later Okinawa Japan where he served as a Green Beret with the 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne). He received a Parachute Badge Combat Infantryman Badge (CIB) and Viet Nam Service Medal. An accomplished aviator he learned to fly in the early 1960’s. He amassed nearly 20000 hours of flight experience in everything from small single-engine airplanes up to the Boeing 747. He held almost every available FAA pilot certificate and rating. He joined United Airlines near the end of the piston airliner era as a flight engineer on the DC-6. Over the course of his 30-year career he flew throughout the United States and all over the world retiring in 1996 as a Captain flying the DC-10. Following his career with United he had a 2nd career as an Air Carrier Inspector with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) where he enjoyed seeing the aviation industry from a different perspective. A life-long mariner boating was one of his greatest passions. Whether day trips on Lake Geneva Lake Michigan crossings or leading sailing trips in the Caribbean he loved being on the water for the social time that boating created with family & friends. He was a member of the US Power Squadron since 1956. Sharing his passion with others he volunteered his time serving the organization where he taught boating classes and promoted safe boating for many years. He was elected District Commander of the Fox Valley (IL) Power Squadron and led the organization in the region before retiring in 2007. He married the love of his life Ceil in 1999. He’ll be remembered as a wonderful husband father brother and friend. A “salt of the earth” guy he was wise genuine honest loyal humble and hard-working. A teacher and mentor to many he always found the good in things. Even through health struggles later in life he never complained and was always upbeat happy and grateful. He was preceded in death by his parents two sisters Virginia Marian and one brother Richard. He is survived by his beloved wife Cecile Myers; son Tom Myers (Vicki) Denver CO; daughter Jennifer Myers Kendall (Chris) Sydney Australia; son Tom Furio (Judi) Orlando FL; son Anthony Furio (Paula) Cary IL; nine grandchildren – and his favorite puppy Ollie.

Clifford J. Sichta Jr., 73, of Geneseo passed away peacefully Feb. 13, 2018 at Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House in Bettendorf, surrounded by loving family.

Per his wishes he will be cremated and a memorial service will be held at a later date. Quad Cities Cremation Center is assisting the family with arrangements. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to Henry County Humane Society in Kewanee.

Cliff was born Dec. 19, 1944 in Washington D.C., the son of Clifford and Virginia Cuno Sichta. He graduated from Illinois Wesleyan, the class of 1966, and was a member of the Acacia Fraternity. Cliff was an “Insurance Wizard” and worked as a C.P.C.U.-certified underwriter for Lohman Bros. in Geneseo and Lyle R. Jager Agency in Kewanee. Cliff enjoyed the study of Theology, woodworking and playing golf. 

Survivors include his former wives Pam Zweng and Carol Mayo; sons Joe (Kim) Sichta of Malibu, CA and Jeff (Kelly) Sichta of Gretna, NE; daughters Maggie (Lou) Kinnamon of Mahomet, IL, Jessica (John) Gilligan of Naperville, IL and Rebecca (Trent) Proehl of Tremont, IL; grandchildren Jake, Nina, Nicole, Arielle, Marissa, Delainie, Kyle, Kade, Kara, Annabel, Ryan, Carlie, Alida and Ava; 8 great grandchildren; brother Robert (Pia) Sichta of Bradenton, FL and sisters Marge (Jerry) Misek of Elizabeth, IL and Sue (Jim) VerHage of Beverly Hills, MI. 

Clifford was preceded in death by his parents and a great grandson, Sailor. 

The family would like to express their appreciation to the compassionate staff of Illini Hospital ICU and the Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House.

Arnold J. Bauer, 93, formerly of Moline, Illinois, died Tuesday, August 9, 2016, in Hope Creek Care Center, East Moline, Illinois.

Services are 3 p.m. Sunday in the Horizon Room at Trimble Funeral Home at Trimble Pointe, 701 12th Street, Moline. Visitation is one hour before the services. Graveside services and burial will be at 11 a.m. Monday at Dubuque Memorial Park, Dubuque, Iowa. Memorials may be made to Riverside United Methodist Church, Moline.

Arnold James Bauer was born November 19, 1922, in Dubuque, Iowa, the son of Reinhold R. and Leona (Walker) Bauer. He graduated from Dubuque Senior High School in 1941. After graduation he was employed by Farley & Loetscher in Dubuque, Iowa. He married Vivian Hirsch on April 2, 1943, in Dubuque. He served in the 5th Air Force division of the U. S. Army Air Corps during WW II. He attended the University of North Dakota in Fargo for special training while in the service. He was a topographical engineer in the South Pacific and traveled from Australia to Japan laying out target mosaics for air force pilots bombing missions, including Nagasaki and Hiroshima.

Arnold was employed by Deere and Company for 36 years as a project architect and administrator of Deere facilities, where he and his staff provided architectural services to John Deere dealers throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, and Australia. After retiring in 1985, he was plant engineer for Harrington Signal Co., Moline, for eight years.

He was an active member of Riverside United Methodist Church, Moline, where he was a lay leader, president of Methodist Men, chairman of finance, property and building committees. He was a member of Doric Lodge #319, AF & AM, and Scottish Rite Bodies, Valley of Moline.

Arnold is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Sally and Thomas Fuller of Moline; two grandchildren and their spouses, Stacey and Jeff Gerstel, and Jessica and Jason Stahl; and four great-grandchildren, Samantha and Tyler Gerstel and Andrew and Abby Stahl. He was preceded in death by his father, Reinhold Bauer; his mother, Leona Wilkerson; his wife, Vivian Bauer; his sister, Mary Lehnen; and his brother, Curtis Bauer.

Neil Zachmeyer, 99, of Monmouth died at 12:20 a.m. Saturday, August 29, 2015 at the Roseville Rehabilitation and Care Center, Roseville, IL.

He was born June 10, 1916 in Burlington, Iowa, the son of Harry Edward and Matilda Barbara (Krehbiel) Zachmeyer. He was raised and educated in Galesburg, graduating from Galesburg High School in 1935.

Neil married Helen Euginia Crapnell.

Neil worked for the CB & Q Railroad during WWII. He later was the first radio announcer for WRAM in Monmouth in 1957. He was a guest announcer for WSM at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville on Feb. 9, 1959. He later worked for the Gates Rubber Co in Galesburg and the Green Thumb for seniors at the Warren County Housing Authority in Monmouth.

Neil loved Country and Western music and played with the band, Melody Rangers. The band played all around the area at fairs and homecomings. He was a founding member of the Mississippi Valley Country Music Association. He was also a member of the Monmouth Masonic Lodge, #37 A.F. & A.M., Peoria Shrine Club, Quad City Consistory, Burlington Moose Lodge and the Galesburg Elks. He was an avid ballroom dancer.

Survivors include his sons, Errol Zachmeyer and Lauren (Mary Ann) Zachmeyer both of Alexis; grandson, Danny Zachmeyer of Alexis; good friends, John Toal and Karen Segura both of Monmouth.

He was preceded in death by his parents and grandson, David Zachmeyer.

Alvin “Al” H. Eilers, 90, of Kewanee, died at 11:25 pm on Tuesday, May 29, 2018 at the Courtyard Estates of Kewanee. Alvin was born September 19, 1927 in Prophetstown, the son of George and Hazel (Becker) Eilers. Alvin graduated from Annawan High School with the class of 1945. He married Cheryl McNaught in 1952, she preceded him in death in 2000. Alvin married Eileen Hill on June 14, 2003, she survives.
Alvin is survived by three sons, Bruce (Sue) Eilers, Annawan, Mark (Lori) Eilers, Kewanee, Tim (Mel) Eilers, Naperville; two step-children, Nancee Lindbeck, Westerly, RI, Hugh (Terri) Hill, Kewanee; ten grandchildren; two step-grandchildren; brother, Eugene (Phyllis) Eilers, Geneseo; sisters, Venita Ewing, Kewanee, Alvina (Ron) DeSplinter, St. Charles, MO; and one sister-in-law, Joan Eilers, Geneseo. Alvin was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Cheryl; two brothers, Frank and Kenney Eilers; and one sister, Ruth Eilers.
Alvin was a farmer all of his life, he worked for Golden Harvest Seed Corn as a side job, retiring in 2006. He was the Yorktown Supervisor for 20 years. Alvin served his country in the US Army. Alvin was a member of the Hooppole American Legion and the Masonic Lodge 293, Prophetstown. Alvin was also a member of the Zion First Methodist Church in Hooppole for over 75 years.
Funeral services will be 10:30 am, Saturday, June 2, 2018 at the Zion First Methodist Church, Hooppole. Visitation will be from 5-7 pm, Friday, June 1, 2018 at Schueneman-Tumbleson Funeral Home. Burial will be in the Hooppole Cemetery. Memorials may be made to Zion First Methodist Church, Hooppole or Henry County Senior Center, Kewanee. Please leave an online condolence for Alvin’s family at

To send flowers or a remembrance gift to the family of Alvin “Al” H. Eilers, please visit our Tribute Store.

Vernon Thomas Wilson, 91, of Orion, died Friday, March 9, 2018, at UnityPoint Health – Trinity Rock Island. 

Funeral services will be held at 11am Tuesday, March 13, 2018 at Kirk, Huggins, and Esterdahl Funeral Home, 1301-4th Street Orion, IL.  Visitation will be from 5-7 pm, Monday, March 12, 2018, at Kirk, Huggins and Esterdahl Funeral Home, Orion.  Burial will be 2pm, Tuesday, March 13, 2018 at Bishop Hill Cemetery, Bishop Hill, IL, where military honors will be conducted by the Orion American Legion. Memorials may be made to Andover Lutheran Church, or University of Iowa Children’s Hospital, Iowa City, Iowa.

Vernon was born on April 27, 1926, in rural New Windsor, IL, the son of Fred and Inez Stevenson Wilson.  He married Verla Johnson in Galesburg, IL, in 1949; she preceded him in death in June 1990.  He later married Ila (Poppy) Nelson on July 14, 1991 in Andover, IL.  Vernon worked in mechanical engineering at John Deere Davenport Works for over 34 years, retiring in 1982.

Vernon was a veteran, having proudly served in the United States Army in the tank division during the Korean war.  He was a member of Augustana Lutheran Church in Andover, and a member and past commander of the Andover American Legion Post 465.  Vernon was a Mason of the Scottish Rite and Coordinate Bodies Valley of Moline, and member of the Doric Lodge 319 AF + AM, Moline.  Vernon also had an extensive musical career, playing bass, piano, and violin.  He performed in various bands, including the Pleasant Valley Boys, Buddies of the Airlanes with WHBF, the Wes Holly Group with WOC, and the Mohassan Grotto Band.  After retiring, Vernon enjoyed going to Arizona during the colder months, spending 24 winters with his wife there.

Survivors include his wife, Ila; three step children, Doug (Terri) Nelson, Lynn Center, Brian (Becky) Nelson, Cambridge, Cindi Sparkman, Orion; seven grandchildren; Neal (Lori) Nelson, Nicole (Marty) Ruthaivilavan, Breanna (Wade) McLaughlin, Lance Nelson, Natalie Nelson, Chad Sparkman, and Ethan Sparkman; and six great grandchildren.  Sister-in-law; Joanne Wilson, East Moline, IL. nephew, Ronald (Jackie) Wilson, Silvis; nieces, Pam (Dick) Hunt, Reynolds and Jill (Craig) Johansen, East Moline, IL, and their families. 

He was preceded in death by his wife, Verla; parents; and three brothers, Henry, Harry, and Ronald.

Ill. Bro. Stanley LaVerne Davidson, 33°,  71, of Basco, IL passed away on Thursday August 2, 2018 at Barnes Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, MO. He was born May 25, 1947 in Keokuk, Iowa. He is survived by his wife Shirley, who he married on May 9, 1970, four children, eleven grandchildren, one great-granddaughter and four sisters. He served in the US Army and was a member of the Warsaw VFW. He worked at FerroSil in Keokuk for 38 years and became Plant Manager before the plant’s closing in 2002. He served on the Hancock County Board and was the longest serving board member in history on the Basco, IL Village Board. True to his spirit, Stanley was an organ and a tissue donor, giving the gift of life.  

Stanley was a very dedicated and active Freemason. He was a Past Master of Basco Masonic Lodge, the current secretary of Blackhawk Masonic Lodge in Hamilton, the Thrice Potent Master of the Lodge of Perfection at the Valley of Quincy Scottish Rite from 1996-1998 and Commander-in Chief at the Valley of Quincy from 2013-2015. Stanley received the Scottish Rite 33° at Providence, RI in 2008. He participated in many Scottish Rite Degrees and Masonic Funeral Services, and was a Past Patron of Browning Chapter OES and a board member of both the Hamilton Rainbow Girls and Quincy Rainbow Girls.

A Celebration of his Life will be will be at 10:00 AM on Friday August 10, 2018 at DeJong-Greaves Celebration of Life Center at 917 Blondeau Street, Keokuk, IA. Burial with Military Rites and the 33° Honor Guard will be at the Basco South Cemetery. Visitation will be from 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM Thursday at the funeral home, followed by a public Masonic Funeral Service conducted by Black Hawk Masonic Lodge #238 starting at 8:00PM. Memorials are suggested for a Scottish Rite Scholarship to be established in his name.

Richard W. Parlier, 97, of Naples, died peacefully at home July 7th 2018. Formerly from Moline, Illinois and Chicago, he had been a Naples resident for over 30 years. Born in Sioux City, Iowa on May 2nd 1921, he attended Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois entering the Army Air Corps Cadet program, eventually becoming a First Lieutenant pilot flying P-51 Fighters.  He went on to work for Shell Oil Company for over 20 years and over 15 with Martin Oil Service, Chicago as Vice President of Real Estate. Richard was a member of the Sailing and Yacht Club for 22 years, enjoying dancing and sailing his 32′ Irwin sailboat. A longtime member of the Medinah Shriners in Illinois, Life Member of the Naples American Legion and Naples Elks.

He married Marjorie Holmes (deceased) in 1949, having five children, Richard H. Parlier of Naples, Marnell Carlson of Lockport, IL, Allison Dille of Eureka, MO, Janalou Koppes of Grays Lake, IL, Christian Parlier of Bakersfield, CA.  In 1973 he married Ruth Corn of Wilmington, IL (deceased) becoming the proud step-father to her four children, Linda Corn-Flynn of Ft. Myers, Cindy Thompson-Manchester of Aspen, CO, Michael Corn of Sarasota and the late Keith Corn of Aspen, CO.

There will be a visitation Friday, July 27th 2018 10am to 12 noon, with a funeral service at 10:30am, Fuller Funeral Home, 1625 Pine Ridge Road, Naples, FL.

Ill. Bro. Gary Curtis Mitchell, MSA, 33°, 79, Galesburg, died at 7:30 p.m. Monday, July 23, 2018, at home.
He was born Sept. 6, 1938, in Galesburg, to Lester and Ruth Lourie Mitchell. He married Karen Belle Kennedy on May 25, 1958, in Galesburg. She survives.
Also surviving are two sons, Curtis K. Mitchell of Phoenix, Arizona, and Lance M. (and Kathy) Mitchell of Knoxville; a sister, Linda (and Neal) McMeekan of East Peoria; five grandchildren, Kyle Mitchell, Tim Mitchell, Ryan Mitchell, Matthew Mitchell and Peyton Mitchell; a great-grandchild; and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; and a son, Jeffrey D. Mitchell on June 15, 1992.
Gary graduated from Galesburg High School in 1956 and attended Western Illinois Teachers College in Macomb. He worked for Outboard Marine Corporation, Gale Products Division, Galesburg, for 30 years. He later worked for NAEIR for 17 years and retired in 2004. He attended Covenant Church in Galesburg. He was a member of the Masonic Vesper Lodge 584. He was the youngest Mason to achieve a 33rd degree Mason east of the Mississippi River. He was also a member of the Shriners and the O.A.K.S. Gary was well known for the voice of the P.A. announcer for Lombard and Churchill Junior High Schools, Galesburg High School, Carl Sandburg College, Knox College and ROWVA/Williamsfield High School. He was a member and past president of the JFL football program, Little League Baseball program and past president and vice president of the Babe Ruth Baseball program in Galesburg. Gary was assistant coach for the Galesburg American Legion Post 285 Baseball Team for several years. He served on the football chain crew for over 20 years. He was also a Cub Scout leader in Galesburg for several years. Gary was inducted into the Friends of GHS Athletics in 2007. He was an avid Chicago Cubs and Chicago Bears fan.
As Gary wished, cremation will be accorded. A Masonic Service will be at 4 p.m.. Friday, Aug. 3, 2018, at Hinchliff-Pearson-West Funeral Directors and Cremation Service Galesburg Chapel followed by a memorial service with Rev. Tom Ek officiating. A celebration of life visitation will then follow from 5 to 7 p.m. A private graveside committal service will be in Memorial Park Cemetery, Galesburg. Memorials may be made to the Covenant Church, OSF Hospice or Shriners Hospital for Children. Online condolences may be made at

Henry John Trefz, 87 of Rock Island, passed away Sunday July 22, 2018 at Friendship Manor, Rock Island.

Funeral services will be 10:00am Thursday at Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church, 2324 18th Avenue, Rock Island, where he held membership. Visitation will be Wednesday from 2:00-6:00pm at Wheelan-Pressly Funeral Home and Crematory, 3030 7th Avenue, Rock Island, followed by a Masonic service at 6:00pm. Burial will be in Rose Lawn Cemetery, Moline. Memorials may be made to Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church or Shriners Hospital for Children, 2211 N. Oak Park Ave., Chicago, IL 60707.

Henry was born in Moline on January 4, 1931 the son of Raymond and Hazel Godfrey Trefz. He graduated from the University of Michigan with his MBA degree in 1954. He retired from John Deere as Manager of Corporate Reporting in 1986 after 30 years of service. Henry received one of two Deere and Company life time achievement awards for accounting.

He was Past Master of Doric Lodge 319, Moline, past treasurer and potentate of Kaaba Shriner, Davenport, past president of Shriners International Treasurer Association, and past president of Blackhawk Shrine Club of the Quad Cities. Henry was a CPA and a proud Michigan Wolverine Fan!

He is survived by nieces, Sarah (Bill) Turner and Kathy (Don) Shumway; nephews, Kevin (Cindy) Bean and Peter (Donna) Bean.

He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Anne Bean.

George Wilson Hurd Jr., 78, longtime businessman in Knoxville and Oneida, died at 10:45 p.m. Monday, July 16, 2018, at the Knox County Nursing Home in Knoxville.
He was born Dec. 13, 1939, in Moline, the son of George Wilson and Leaveu Leona (Brown) Hurd Sr. He married Marilyn K. Reihm on April 9, 1960, in Moline. She survives of Knoxville.
He leaves behind his family: Geoffrey (Diana) Hurd of Knoxville, Gregory (Margaret) Hurd of Chillicothe, Randy (Paulette) Hurd of Washington; two daughters, Michelle (Keith “Opey”) Greene of Knoxville and Teresa (Troy) Riley of Washington, Missouri; 11 grandchildren, Megan (Traig) Hurd-Cheney of Peoria Heights, Amanda (Jarred) Beckman of Galesburg, Garrett (Samantha) Hurd of Springfield, Missouri, Betsy Hurd of Chillicothe, Boston (Allison) Jacobs of Bloomington, Justin and Samantha Hurd of Washington, Abigail and Teaguen Riley of Washington, Missouri, Sheowly and Karolina Hurd of Knoxville; five stepgrandchildren; three great-grandchildren, Olivia and Lorelei Cheney, Nova Jacobs and five stepgreat-grandchildren; two brothers, John (Tommie) Hurd of Watertown, Wisconsin, and J. Robert (Jon Collins) Hurd of East Moline; one sister, Patty Haney Ward of Geneseo; and other relatives and many friends. He was preceded in death by his father, George W. Hurd Sr.; and mother and stepfather, LeRoy and Leaveu Barber.
George was raised and educated in East Moline and Silvis, attending McKinley School, D.B. Hoffman School in East Moline, and the Silvis McKinley School. He graduated from United Township High School in East Moline in 1957. He then attended the Moline Community College, and finally the Worsham Mortuary College in Chicago, graduating in 1960 as a licensed funeral director. George was a member of Delta Pi Epsilon Fraternity.
While attending high school, he worked for Schroder Mortuary in Silvis. During mortuary school, he worked for Kamps Mortuary in Chicago. After graduation, he was employed by Trimble Funeral Home in Moline, Myers Funeral Home in Geneseo, Hurley Funeral Home in Havana, Daley Mortuary in Port Byron, Beck’s Memorial Home and Metzler Funeral Home in Bloomington, and Peterson-Wallin-Knox Funeral Home and Furniture Store in Woodhull and Alpha. He then went on to purchase the Vandemore Funeral Home in Atkinson and the Hendricks Funeral Home in Oneida in 1978, the Martin-Trumbold Funeral Home in Knoxville in 1979, changing the names to Hurd-Hendricks Funeral Homes, and the Root Funeral Home in Maquon in 1994.
George was a member of the Knoxville United Methodist Church in Knoxville. He was also a member of Pacific Masonic Lodge 66 A.F. & A.M. of Knoxville; the Knoxville Chapter 880, Order of the Eastern Star, where he served as Worthy Patron in 1989 and 1999; he was a life member of the Valley of Moline, Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite. He helped organize the tri-county ambulance service in Henry, Mercer, and Knox Counties, involving four fire districts around Alpha, New Windsor, Woodhull, and Rio, serving as director and EMT. He was also a board member of the Oneida Cemetery Association, as well as a charter member of the Oak Run First Responders, organized in 1999, Carl Sandburg Mortuary Science Board, currently sexton of the Knoxville Cemetery, and serving on the Endowment Trust Fund Board for the OES Home in Macon.

John Philip Melcher, 61, of Geneseo, passed away Monday, July 9, 2018, at UnityPoint Health-Trinity Rock Island.

Funeral services will be held at 3 p.m. Saturday, July 14, 2018, at First United Methodist Church, 302 N State St., Geneseo. Visitation will be Friday, July 13, from 4 to 7 p.m. at Esterdahl Mortuary & Crematory, Ltd., 6601 38th Ave., Moline. Cremation rites will follow services. Memorials may be made to First United Methodist Church of Geneseo or to Shriners Hospitals For Children.

John was born on Oct. 1, 1956, in Rosiclare, Ill., the son of William Henry and Marjorie Ann Aupperle Melcher. He married Jami Johnson on Nov. 30, 1985, in East Moline. John worked as a civil engineer for the Illinois Department of Transportation for 32 years, and later at McClure EngineeringIMEG Corp.

John was a member at First United Methodist Church in Geneseo, where he served as an usher, greeter and with the church’s BackPack Blessings Program. He was a member of the Doric Lodge No. 319 AF + AM, Moline, and Past Patron of the Moline Chapter No. 258, Order of Eastern Star. John enjoyed fishing and spending time with his family.

Survivors include his wife, Jami Melcher; son, Matthew (Erica) Melcher, Jacksonville, Ill.; daughter, Megan (Steven) Olson, Princeton, Ill.; grandchild, Lucy Melcher; and brother, Richard (Patty) Melcher, Benton, Ill.

He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Jody Lentz.

Memories may be shared online by visiting

It is with deep regret that I inform you of the death of

Ill. Bro. Dick J. Carroll, 33°

on June 19th 2018 at the Christian Village in Lincoln, Illinois.

Dick was born on April 7, 1937, in Pekin. He married Kayelene A. “Kay” Sidell on Aug. 17, 1991, in Pekin. She survives.

Also surviving are one daughter, Jody Curtis; one son, Scott Carroll; two step-daughters, Kristy Adams and Tammy Hedrick; eight grandchildren; and one great-grandson. He also leaves his faithful dog, Ebony, who was always by his side.

Dick was a United States Air Force veteran and worked as a letter carrier in Pekin and then a real estate agent at one time.

Dick was a Mason for more than 60 years and was very active in Masonic groups throughout the State of Illinois. He was the prime mover in organizing Cathedral Lodge #1179 and was Past Master of Tremont Lodge #462, Empire Lodge #126 and Cathedral Lodge #1179. He was a Grand Lecturer, Past Member of the Board of Grand Examiners and member of credentials Committee of the Grand Lodge.

In the Scottish Rite, Valley of Peoria, he was Past Thrice Potent Master and had received the 33°.

In the York Rite Bodies, he was Past Excellent High Priest, Past Thrice Illustrious Master and Past Eminent Commander. He also was chairman of the Board of Grand Examiners for the Grand Council of Cryptic Masons of the State of Illinois and Order of the Purple Cross. He was Past Grand Master of the Grand Council of Cryptic Masons.

His other masonic memberships included Past Puissant Sovereign of the Red Cross of Constantine; Member of York Rite College #42; Past Eminent Prior of Knight York Cross of Honor of Illinois; Past President of the Holy Royal Order Knight Templar Priests; Allied Masonic Degrees; National Sojourners; DeMolay Legion of Honor and Knight Masons. He was a member of Mohammed Temple Shrine and was active in the Dramads. Dick was also an Odd Fellow Past Noble Grand

A visitation was held from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 30, 2018, at Preston-Hanley Funeral Homes & Crematory in Pekin. Masonic rites were conducted at 4 p.m., with a memorial service officiated by Pastor Judy Steger Kennedy following. Military rites were also provided by the United States Air Force and Tazewell Area Ceremonial Team.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Illinois Council Nurses Foundation, c/o Ron Fullerlove, 541 Crestview Drive, Sherrard, IL 61281; or Empire Lodge #126, c/o David Campbell, 4175 Allentown Road, Pekin, IL 61554

RWB Carroll departed to the Grand Lodge above on the 19th day of June 2018.

Thus ends the Earthly record of this just and upright man and mason.

Aledo’s biggest fan, Richard E. “Dick” Maynard, Sr., passed away Tuesday, May 29, 2018, at Genesis Medical Center in Aledo.

Services will be 10:30 AM Monday, June 4, at Bewley Funeral Home and Cremation Services, Aledo. Burial, with Military Honors, will be in the Aledo Cemetery.

Visitation will be 1:00 PM to 6:00 PM Sunday, June 3, at the funeral home. The family will be present from 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM, with Masonic Rites to follow.

Dick was born January 15, 1933, the son of Sydnie Elizabeth Edwards and Clayton Dale “Bill” Maynard. He was raised by his maternal grandmother, Selma Edwards. He graduated from Aledo High School in 1951 and attended Western Illinois University.

Dick married the love of his life, Jennievee O. Blackman, of Seaton, Illinois, on August 23, 1952, in El Montecito, California.

After serving in the military, he worked for Illinois Power. He served as Mercer County Sheriff from 1958 to 1962. In 1963, he went into business with the late Charles Ford Sr. and formed Ford & Maynard Real
Estate and Insurance Agency.

Dick invested much time into the Aledo downtown. He was instrumental in bringing numerous businesses to Mercer County. He owned and operated the Aledo Opera House, The Slammer/Great Escape, Aledo Hardware, as well as the Aledo Depot.

Dick was a devoted Democrat. He served as the Mercer County Democratic Chairman for 40 years. He was
a member of the Aledo United Methodist Church, Aledo Jaycees, Masonic Lodge No. 252, VFW Post No.1571 and the American Legion Post No. 121.

Those left to honor and cherish his memory are his loving and devoted wife, Jennie; his sons, Richard E. Jr. (Mary) Maynard of Aledo, Ronald (Patty) Maynard of Chandler, Arizona, Roger (Jackie) Maynard and Robert (Becky) Maynard all of Aledo; and one daughter, Jane (Bill) Stropes of Aledo. He also leaves behind eighteen grandchildren; and twenty-five great grandchildren.

Those meeting him in Heaven are his parents and grandparents; sister, Judy Haines; brothers, Tom Haines and Jimmy Maynard; and two great grandchildren, Erika Kate Maynard and Elijah Michael Maynard.

Memorials may be left to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Erika Kate Hope Alliance, Aledo United Methodist Church or charity of choice. Online condolences may be left for Dick’s family at www.

Joseph “Hob” Cantrell, 85, of Carbon Cliff, passed away Friday, June 29, 2018, at New Perspective Senior Living, Silvis.

Funeral services will be held Tuesday, July 3, 2018, at 10 a.m. at Esterdahl Mortuary & Crematory, Ltd., 6601 38th Ave., Moline.  Visitation will be from 4-7 p.m. Monday, July 2, 2018, with a Masonic Service following at 7 p.m. all at the funeral home.  Cremation rites will follow services.  Memorials may be made to the family for a fund to be established in Joseph’s name.

Joseph was born on November 13, 1932 in Hamilton, AL, the son of Turner and Ola Ridings Cantrell.  He married Florence A. Anton on December 5, 1953 in East Moline.  Joseph owned and operated Cantrell’s Body Shop, Garage, and Towing.  Prior to owning his own business, Joseph worked at John Deere Plow and Planter.  Joseph was involved in the Carbon Cliff Optimist Club and was the Carbon Cliff Police Chief and Carbon Cliff Assistant Fire Chief.  Joseph was a 32nd Degree Mason and a member of Clement Lodge No. 680 of Colona.  He enjoyed collecting and working on clocks.

Survivors include his wife, Florence Cantrell, Carbon Cliff; children, Joseph (Jessica) Cantrell, Silvis, Daniel Cantrell, Carbon Cliff; Patti (Mike) VanDeWoestyne, East Moline, Lonnie Cantrell, Silvis, Todd (Lisa) Cantrell, Carbon Cliff; grandchildren, Luke (Abbey) VanDeWoestyne, Elgin, IL, Joseph (Kristy) Cantrell, MO, Jill (Corey) Hynes, MO, Justin Wilson, CA, Adam (Jamie) Cantrell, Rockton, IL, Julie VanDeWoestyne, Davenport, Cassandra Cantrell, GA, Travis Hauman, Orion, and Collin, Kylie, and Dylan Cantrell all of Carbon Cliff; and several great grandchildren. 

He was preceded in death by a grandson, Brady Cantrell; one great grandson and three sisters.

Lewis R. Jinks, 95, of New Boston, died Sunday, June 10, 2018, at Crest Care Center at Ridgecrest Village, Davenport, where he had lived the past six years.

Funeral services will be held at Dennison Funeral Home in Aledo on Thursday, June 14, at 11:30 a.m., with visitation from 9:30 a.m. until the time of service. Burial will be in New Boston Cemetery, with military rites by Aledo American Legion. Following the graveside is a time of food and fellowship at the First Christian Church, Keithsburg. Memorials may be left for Keithsburg First Christian Church, Ridgecrest Foundation Koning Charitable Fund or New Boston Fire and Ambulance.

Lewis Robert Jinks was born April 23, 1923, on a farm south of Viola to Clarence and Barbara Smith Jinks. Lew attended Rock Island public schools until his senior year, when his family moved, he graduated from Port Byron High School in 1942. After high school he went on to graduate from Worsham College of Mortuary Science. Lew entered the Army during World War II, serving in the South Pacific and Iwo Jima with the 147th Infantry. On March 7, 1948, he married Betty J. Clauson in Aledo. They were married for 62 years until Betty died on Aug. 17, 2010. Lew was a licensed funeral director and embalmer, working for Larson Funeral Home in Rock Island for over 20 years. In 1980, the family moved to Joy when Lew purchased the Olin Funeral Homes in Joy, Keithsburg and New Boston and the Crummy Funeral Homes in Viola and Reynolds. He then opened a funeral home in Aledo … all of which became Jinks Funeral Homes of Mercer County. A few years later, Lew and Betty moved to their cabin in New Boston where they spent many happy years overlooking the Mississippi River. Lew retired from funeral service in 1992. He was a member of the Aledo Masonic Lodge and Aledo Exchange Club. In his free time he enjoyed golfing, boating, traveling and spending time with family and friends.

Those left to cherish his memory are his daughters and sons-in-law: Elizabeth and Arthur Stewart, of Round Rock, Texas, and Kristen “Tina” Nelson-Boutros and Dr. Rami Boutros of Iowa City, Iowa; grandchildren: Kaden (Jillian Hennenfent) Nelson, Garen Nelson, Taven Nelson-Boutros, Laken Nelson-Boutros and Lilien Nelson-Boutros; best friend: Barbara Thede; and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; wife; and siblings: Marjorie Jinks, Lawrence Jinks, Grace Brown, Wilbur Jinks and Dorothy Wright Prahl.

Online condolences may be left at

James W. Dunn, 71, died at home in the care of family and Hospice, on June 6, 2018, after an 11-month struggle with cancer. He resided between Buffalo Prairie and Reynolds.

Funeral services will be 10 a.m. Friday, June 22, at Wheelan-Pressly Funeral Home and Crematory, 201 E. 4th Ave., Milan.

Private burial will be at a later time. Visitation will be 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home. Memorial donations can be made to the Development Office, Shriners Hospital for Children-Chicago, 2211 N. Oak Park Ave., Chicago, IL 60707.

Jim was the son of William Dunn and Florence L. Roberts Dunn. He attended Southside Grade School, in Aledo, until 1955. He then attended Woodside, Oswestry, England; Eastern Green Jr. High and Heart of England High School, Coventry, England, from 1957 until 1963. Jim attended Aledo High School from 1963 through his graduation in 1966.

Jim enlisted in the United States Air Force and completed basic training at Lackland Air Force Base in August 1966. He went to technical training for electronic warfare repair at Keesler AFB, Biloxi, Miss., before being stationed at Mather (1967) and McClellan

(1969-1970) Air Force Bases near Sacramento, Calif. Jim spent 1968 at Udorn RTAFB, Thailand, with temporary duties in Vietnam.

After completing military service, Jim was employed by Illinois Bell, then Ameritech and A.T. & T. for 40 years before retiring in 2012. He served on the board of what is now Vibrant Credit Union for 13 years. A marriage ended in divorce in 1996.

Jim had many interests and hobbies. He spent a lot of time beekeeping with his grandfather, Rollie Dunn, before going in the Air Force. He loved fishing both locally and on the Great Lakes, golfing with fellow telephone guys and in tournaments, and was an avid hunter and tracker.

He was past master of Buffalo Prairie Masonic Lodge 679. He also was a member of Scottish Rite, Moline, and Mohassan Grotto, Davenport.

His real passion was breeding and training Drathaars/German Wire-haired Pointers and working to improve the breed both nationally and internationally. He was a member of VDD GNA-Group North America. He was a performance judge and a breed show judge for the same international organization. Jim was a member and judge for NAVHDA (North America Versatile Hunting Dogs). He continually promoted the development of the Drathaar breed and was actively involved in training of hunting dogs. He regularly advised on general dog training, even through his long illness. He will be met by Rusty, Dolly, Amsel, Pasha, Anuschka, Aster and Otto, among many others. He loved puppies and the challenge of training them.

Jim is survived by his sister, Sandra, and her husband, Bill Farrington, and their son, John Farrington, Sackets Harbor, N.Y.; his nieces, Jennifer, and her husband, Ben Cook, New Orleans, La, and Jolene, and her husband, James Burns, Sacramento, Calif.; and two great-nieces, Zena M. Cook and Avery E. Burns.

His parents; grandparents; nephew, James Farrington; and friend of 50 years, Gary Castor, died before him.

Jim treasured his many friends from all walks of life. His family is very thankful for the love and support of all his friends over the years, especially through his long illness.

Online condolences may be left for the family at

James Joseph Lerch Sr., 77, of Rock Island, died Sunday, May 6, 2018, at Select Specialty Hospital, Davenport. Visitation will be Wednesday from 4-7 p.m. with a Masonic service being conducted at 7 p.m. at Wheelan-Pressly Funeral Home and Crematory, Rock Island. A funeral service will be 10 a.m. Thursday at the funeral home. Burial will be at Rock Island National Cemetery, Arsenal Island, where military honors will be conducted. Memorials may be made in care of South Park Presbyterian Church, Rock Island.

James was born in Rock Island on Nov. 1, 1940, a son of Joseph H. and Julia VanDenHende Lerch. He married Patricia Kester on July 31, 1965, at South Park Presbyterian Church, Rock Island.

James was a U.S. Navy veteran. He worked as a cold mill operator at Alcoa for 36 years. He was also the chief of police in Sherrard for 25 years and served 10 years with the Milan Auxiliary Police.

James was a member of South Park Presbyterian Church, Rock Island, a Mason of the Scottish Rite, member of the Masonic Lodge No. 1014 AF & AM, Moline and the Evening Lions Club, Rock Island.

He enjoyed gardening, canning, golfing and bowling.

Those left to cherish his memory include his wife, Patricia Lerch, Rock Island; children (and spouses), James (Julie) Lerch Jr., Glen Ellen, Ill., David P. (Julie) Lerch, Fruitland, Iowa, Melissa K. (Dale) Partain, Rock Island, and Paul M. (Charity) Lerch, Greenwood, Ark.; nine grandchildren; and one great-grandson.

He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Sue Horsman.

Online condolences may be left for the family at

James H. Hamer, 86, lifelong resident of Atkinson, passed away Tuesday, April 24, 2018, at Hillcrest Home in Geneseo, Ill., surrounded by his family. Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Monday, April 30, 2018, at the Atkinson Congregational Church. The Rev. Dan Wright will officiate. Burial will follow at Oakwood Cemetery, Geneseo. Visitation will take place Sunday, April 29, from 2 to 5 p.m. at Vandemore Funeral Home & Crematory, Atkinson Chapel, where a Masonic ritual will be conducted at 5 p.m. by Stewart Masonic Lodge No. 92 AF&AM. Memorials may be left to the Jim Hamer Memorial Fund, which will be distributed among several local organizations.

Jim was born July 19, 1931, the son of William and Julia (Nowers) Hamer, in Geneseo, Ill. He graduated from Atkinson High School with the class of 1949. Jim married Edley A. Taber on May 27, 1951, in Atkinson, Ill. He was a lifetime and very active member of the Atkinson Congregational Church. Jim worked for John Deere Foundry Works in East Moline as a grinder for 30 years, retiring in 1981. He was a proud veteran of the United States Army Reserve. Jim was a member of the 32nd degree of Stewart Masonic Lodge No. 92 AF&AM, where he served as Worshipful Master. Jim was also active on the Atkinson School Board and Kiwanis Club for many years. Jim was very dedicated to the Village of Atkinson and was the mayor of Atkinson for several years. He loved his family and church very much and was always helping others.

Those left to cherish his memory include his wife, Edley; sons, Jim (Lori) Hamer, and Jon (Renee) Hamer; daughters, Janis (Lloyd) Smith, and Juli Hamer; along with eight grandchildren, Holly (Scott) VanOpdorp, Kate (Brock) Wyffels, Nick Hamer, Leslie (Kris) Judd, Eric (Amber) Hamer, Austin Hamer, Preston Cartwright and Jessie Cartwright; and four great-grandchildren, Carter, Lilly, Hadley and Sawyer.

Jim was preceded in death by his parents; William and Julia; brothers, Bill, Walt and Roy Hamer; and sisters, Wilma Seyller and Janet Gustafson.

Share a message of sympathy with Jim’s family at

Euin “Sam” Sandusky, 86, of Coal Valley, IL, died Thursday, March 22, 2018, at UnityPoint Trinity West in Rock Island, IL.

Per his wishes, he will be cremated.  A visitation will be held Sunday, March 25th, from 3:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m., at First Presbyterian Church in Coal Valley, IL.  Services will be Monday, March 26th, at the church, at 10:00 a.m., with burial in Western Cemetery near Orion, IL.

Memorials may be made to the family.

Sam was born in Bronte, TX, on September 25, 1931, son of Jesse Mack and Martha (Lowry) Sandusky.   On August 28, 1953, he married JoAnn Hedrick, who preceded him in death September 29, 2004.

He attended schools in Gainesville, TX, and then served his country in the U.S. Army during the Korean Conflict.  During his life, he owned Sandusky Construction, Quint City Barricade.  He was born a cowboy, and enjoyed stock car racing, rodeos, and running heavy equipment.

Survivors include sons, Jim (Cindy) Sandusky, Todd (Kelli) Sandusky, and Scott Sandusky; a brother, Billy Joe (Betty) Sandusky; grandchildren, Cassie (Nate) Leffler, Jessica (Ben) Proust, Zane (Cory Wessells) Sandusky, Erica Sandusky, and Landon Sandusky; great-grandchild, Ariah Leffler; and special friend, Gwen Emerson of Coal Valley.

He was preceded in death by his wife and his parents.

A Masonic service will be accorded for Brother Sandusky on Sunday the 25th of March at 7:00 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church 2431 1st Coal Valley, Illinois.  He was a 54-year member of the Fraternity

Max Dean Wright, 53, of Rock Island, passed away unexpectedly Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018, at home.

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 20, at Esterdahl Mortuary & Crematory, 6601 38th Ave., Moline. Visitation will be on Monday from 4-7 the funeral home with a Masonic service at 3 p.m. Cremation rites will follow services. Memorials may be made to the family.

Max was born on July 12, 1964, in Moline, the son of LaVernon P. and Katherine Emma Moritz Wright. He married Mary J. Dodson on July 12, 1986, in Union City, Mich. He was the owner and operator of Certified Cleaning and Restoration and Lucky Ducky’s Video Poker and Slots.

Max was a 32nd Degree Mason of the Scottish Rite and Coordinate Bodies Valley of Moline, member of the Doric Lodge 319 AF + AM, Moline. He was also an instructor for the Illinois Child Identification Program.

Survivors include his wife, Mary Wright, Rock Island; daughter, Amie (Jordan) Bonilla, Moline, and Ashley (Chrys) Wright, Rock Island; grandchildren, Malaya Bonilla, Tristan Bonilla, Tatum Garrett; brother, LaVernon (Bonnie) Wright, Moline; sisters, Debbie (Larry) Carlson, Florida, Nina Diane Sentner, Florida, and Ginny (Ron) Potter, Missouri; mother-in-law and father-in-law, Mary Lou and Tom Dodson; and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; one brother, Rich; and one sister, Velma Lorraine Wright.

Memories may be shared online by visiting

Please plan to attend his Masonic service on Monday.

Arcie A. Sapato, 96, of Moline, died Friday, Feb. 9, 2018, at Heartland Health Care Center, Moline.

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 14, at Esterdahl Mortuary & Crematory, 6601 38th Ave., Moline. Visitation will be from 4 to 7 p.m.Tuesday, Feb. 13, at the funeral home. Burial will be at the Rock Island National Cemetery, Arsenal Island, where military honors will be conducted by the Moline American Legion Post 246. Memorials may be made to All Saints Episcopal Church, Moline.

Arcie was born on Oct. 29, 1921, in Dallas, Texas, the son of John and Lucille Sapato. He married Dorothy Fern Arnold on Sept. 23, 1946. In his early years, he worked as a welder, and later as an inspector for John Deere for 33 years, retiring in 1983.

Arcie was a veteran, having proudly served in the United States Army during World War II, where he served in the European Theatre. Arcie was a member of All Saints Episcopal Church of Moline. He was a former Moline VFW member and was a member of UAW 865. Arcie was a member of the Silvis Masonic Lodge No. 898 AF & A.M. and the Moline Consistory.

Survivors include his wife, Dorothy; children, Stephen (Kristen) Sapato, Tampa, Fla.; son-in-law, Gerald Schmidt, Moline; four grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; and brother, Daniel Sapato, Chicago.

He was preceded in death by daughter, Cheryl Schmidt; parents; sisters, Violet, Marie, Judy, Margaret and Gloria; and brothers, Albert, Paul, Tony and John.

Memories may be shared online by visiting

Ill ⸫ Allen Gilbert “Bud” Spencer 33°, Marseilles, Illinois.

Allen Gilbert “Bud” Spencer was born on December 24, 1920 in Niagara Falls, New York and passed away Saturday, February 3, 2018, Marseilles, Illinois.

He was raised a Master Mason March 21, 1942 in Marseilles Lodge, No. 417 A.F. & A.M. and was a seventy-five-year member of the Lodge.  He served as Worshipful Master in 1952, and for some number years thereafter as Treasurer.  He was a member of the Spring Reunion Class, Valley of Bloomington, in 1948.  He was coroneted a Sovereign Grand Inspector General, 33° and made an Honorary Member of the Supreme Council on September 29, 1976 at Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  He was also a member of Mohammed Shrine, Ottamar Shrine Club, and the Order of Eastern Star.

After study at Balliol College, Oxford University, Oxford, England, and graduation in 1942 from Northwestern University, Evanston, Illustrious Brother Spencer was drafted into the U.S. Army, serving in the 745th Tank Battalion of the 1st Infantry Division (Big Red One) which landed on the beaches of Normandy.  He participated in five campaigns and twelve major battles including the Battle of the Hurtgen Forest, So. Lo, and Mons, Belgium.  He received a battlefield commission, and promotion.  He was awarded the Purple Heart, two Bronze Stars, and a Silver Star.  He was a Past Secretary-Treasurer of the 745th Tank Battalion Association, and a charter member of both the Marseilles American Legion Post No. 235 and the Marseilles V.F.W. Post No. 5506.

Upon his return to Marseilles he, and his wife, “Lainie”, owned and operated Spencer Insurance Agency for over fifty years.  Brother Spencer’s civic service included Past President, Marseilles Chamber of Commerce: Board of Directors for Community Hospital of Ottawa; Twin Oaks Savings Bank; Marseilles Nursing Service; Marseilles Recreation Board; and the Marseilles Cemetery Association.  He was proud of over fifty-years perfect attendance in the Marseilles Rotary Club and was also a member of Sigma Nu Fraternity.

Illustrious Brother Spencer was active in the First Congregational Church, Marseilles serving as Moderator, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Church Clerk, Finance Secretary and Sunday School Teacher and Superintendent.

Bud was predeceased by his wife, Elizabeth Elaine “Lainie” Carlson Spencer.  He is survived by his daughter, Sally Spencer of Marseilles: a son, Rom (Tracy) Spencer of Marseilles; seven grandchildren, and ten great-grandchildren.

Visitation will be from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. Tuesday, February 6, 2018 at Seals-Campbell Funeral Home, Marseilles with Masonic Services at 7:00 p.m.  Funeral services will be at 11:00 a.m. Wednesday, February 7 at First Congregational Church, Marseilles, with interment to follow at Riverview Cemetery, Marseilles with Military Honors.

D.D. Darrah Thirty-Third Degree Club members will be seated together and serve as honorary pallbearers.  Please plan to arrive at the Church around 10:30 a.m. with your caps.

Memorial gifts to the Permanent Fund, Valley of Bloomington A.A.S.R. will be appropriately acknowledged.

Take thine ease,

Rest and refresh thyself,

Enter into the Holy House of the Lord,

Thou good and faithful servant.

Thus ends the Masonic record of this just and upright man and Mason.


Barry D. Weer, 33°

Executive Secretary

Dennis C. Whicker Jr., 52, of Rock Island, passed away Friday Feb. 2, 2018, at the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics, Iowa City.

Services will be 11 a.m. Wednesday at Wheelan-Pressly Funeral Home and Crematory, Milan. Visitation will be Tuesday from 4-7 p.m. at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be left to the family.

Dennis was born Feb. 17, 1965, in Rock Island, the son of Dennis C. Whicker Sr. and Dianne Peasley. He married Tammara S. Britcher on Oct. 22, 1988, in Moline. Dennis was a U.S. Army veteran.

Mr. Whicker had been employed as a sheriff’s deputy and later a correctional officer with Rock Island County. He had also been employed with McGiverns Jewelry Store as a jeweler.

Dennis had formerly been a member and trustee of the Fraternal order of Police District 12 and the Trio Lodge in Rock Island.

Survivors include his wife, Tammy; children, Joshua Whicker, Amanda Whicker; granddaughter, Joshlynn; mother, Dianne Paulsgrove; stepfather, Lyle Paulsgrove; stepmother, Mary Whicker; siblings, Patty Fisher, Tiffany (Tom) Sanborn, Todd Whicker, Jimmy (Val) Paulsgrove; several nieces, nephews and cousins.

He was preceded by his father, Dennis Whicker Sr. in 2009.

Online condolences may be left for the family at

Ill. John T. Phillips, 33° Memorial, 1947-2018

It is with great sadness that I relay the passing of our dear friend and brother, John Thomas Phillips.  In the comfort of home, surrounded by close friends and family, and while in the loving embrace of his bride Cathy, Illustrious Brother Phillips was called to eternal refreshment by the Grand Architect of the Universe on Saturday, January 6, 2018.  He was 70 years old.

A memorial service and visitation open to all who wish to attend will be held on Thursday, January 11, 2018, from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm, at the Scottish Rite Valley of Chicago, located at 383 E. Lake Street, Bloomingdale, Illinois 60108.  Masonic funeral services conducted by Illumination Lodge No. 5, A.F. & A.M., will take place at 8:00 pm. Dinner service will be available starting 6:00 pm.

Illustrious John T. Phillips, 33°, was an accomplished Freemason and devoted Scottish Rite member.  As an Active Member of the Supreme Council, Grand Lieutenant Commander, and Deputy for the State of Illinois, John was instrumental in leading the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, Illinois Council of Deliberation, and Valley of Chicago.

As a personal mentor and friend to all, John’s legacy will live on through the hearts and minds of the so many men and women whose lives he has touched throughout his life’s journey.  If we may feel like there is one less tie binding us together here on earth, may we feel that there is an even stronger, deathless tie, binding us to Heaven.

I am sure that John will be remembered for many things, but by far his greatest quality was simply how kind and generous of a man he was.  We have suffered a great loss, but John provided us with an example of how to live one’s life to its fullest.  Even though we mourn his passing, we celebrate the life of a man who so many of us knew and loved.


Edward J. Witas III, MSA, 33°

Executive Secretary & COO