Lowell T. Drayton - 86
4/15/1931 - 6/15/2017
Walnut, Illinois

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Sue J. Peterson - 85
5/26/1932 - 6/14/2017
Walnut, Illinois

Sue J. Peterson, 85 of Walnut died Thursday...

Donald L. Gustafson - 78
7/8/1938 - 5/24/2017
Reno, Nevada Don Gustafson, age 78, passed away on May 24,...
Darla P. Piper - 74
8/13/1942 - 5/20/2017
Franklin Grove Darla P. Piper Darla P. Piper, age 74, of...

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Sharon Gerdes - 64

7/13/1952 - 4/6/2017
Princeton, Illinois Sharon L. Gerdes, age 64, of rural Princeton and formerly of Walnut passed away peacefully on Thursday April 6, 2017 at her home after a two year courageous battle with cancer. Sharon was born on July 13, 1952 in Princeton, Illinois the daughter of Maynard and Margaret (VonHolten) Parker. She was educated in Walnut Schools and graduated from Walnut High School. She was united in marriage to Ed Gerdes on Aug. 2, 1980 at the First Lutheran Church of Ohio. She was a longtime employee of Walnut Grade School and Bureau Valley North Schools, retiring in 2014 as office secretary. Many times you would see a young student who was ill sitting on her lap in the office waiting for Mom or Dad to come. Many young students would arrive at school in the morning and stop at the office to get a hug from Mrs. Gerdes before heading to their classroom. After retirement she spent time volunteering for the after school program, the exploratory classes and other school activities. She had been a volunteer with the Walnut Fire Department and was a certified EMT and had completed some advanced paramedic training. She is survived by her husband Ed Gerdes of Princeton, IL; her parents Maynard and Margaret Parker of Walnut, IL; one daughter Tonya (Mike) Besler of Ohio, IL; one son Nicholas Gerdes of Walnut, IL; two stepdaughters Robin (Douglas) Noble of Charlotte, NC, Rebecca (Kevin) Woody of Marietta, GA; two stepsons John (Mary) Gerdes of Green Cove Springs, FL, Matthew (Jennifer) Gerdes of Western Springs, IL; 10 grandchildren; one sister Charlene (Bill) Frankenreider of Annawan, IL; one brother Douglas (Lori) Parker of Normal, IL; one special niece Amber (John) Dalziel of Ripon, WI; and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins. She was preceded in death by her grandparents, and one brother in law Herb Gerdes. Visitation will be held on Sunday April 9,2017 from 4 to 7p.m. at the Garland Funeral Home in Walnut. Funeral services will be conducted on Monday April 10, 2017 at 10:30 a.m. at the First Lutheran Church of Ohio with the Rev. Eugene Vincent, pastor officiating. Burial will be in Walnut Cemetery. Memorials have been established to the First Lutheran Church of Ohio, Bureau Valley North Exploratory Classes, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, or a charity of the Donors Choice in lieu of flowers.

Kevin D. Larkey - 56

6/30/1960 - 4/3/2017
Walnut, Illinois Kevin D. Larkey, age 56, of Walnut, died Monday, April 3, 2017, at OSF St. Francis Medical Center in Peoria. Kevin was born June 30, 1960 in Morrison the son of Dale and Nancy (Dennes) Larkey. Farming was his passion and he served the Walnut area his entire life. Kevin was an Oliver collector, a Harley Davidson enthusiast, and an avid St. Jude supporter. He hosted many biennial antique tractor and corn picking shows. Survivors include two daughters, Sarah (Gregory) Johnson of Metamora and Kelsey (Joshua Kessinger) Larkey of Normal; one brother, Loren (Jennifer) Larkey of Gatesville, TX; one granddaughter, Neva Johnson of Metamora; and his significant other, Susan Thole of Elderidge, IA. He was preceded in death by his parents. Visitation will be Friday, April 7, 2017, from 4 – 7 PM at the Garland Funeral Home in Walnut. Memorial services will be private at a later date. In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established for the family to help pay for the services. Online condolences may be sent to www.garlandfuneralhome.com

Pastor LaVern L. Johnson - 81

2/11/1936 - 4/2/2017
Malden, IL Pastor LaVern L. Johnson, 81, of Malden, died Sunday, April 2, 2017 at his home. He was born on February 11, 1936 in Madison, Wisc., the son of Leonard and Ida Johnson. He married Doris Thorpe in 1962 in Willmar, Minn. He pastored several churches including First Lutheran Church in Ohio, IL, Michigan, Minnesota and Indiana before coming to Illinois. LaVern enjoyed astronomy, genealogy, oil painting and drawing, storm watching and operating his HAM radio. He was a member of the HAM radio group. Those surviving include his wife, Doris of Malden; daughters, Nancy Johnson of Bowie, MD and Sheryl (Terry) Harris of Malden; sons, William (Salma) Johnson of Crofton, MD and Thomas Johnson of Princeton; grandchildren, Dillan Harris, Tasha (Kyle) Schuster, Rachel Harris, and Sarah Harris; and a great grandchild Kaden Schuster. He was preceded in death by his parents, a son Gregory and a brother David. Funeral service will be at 11 AM Monday, April 10 in St. John Lutheran Church in Peru with Pastor Tim Kenyan, officiating. Burial will follow at Peru City Cemetery. There will be no visitation. In lieu of flowers a memorial has been established in his memory. Arrangements are under the direction of Garland Funeral Home in Walnut. To send condolences visit www.garlandfuneralhome.com

Jerria J. Baumgartner - 90

4/10/1926 - 3/30/2017
Walnut, Illinois WALNUT — Jerria J. Baumgartner, 90, of Walnut died Thursday, March 30, 2017, at Heritage Health in Walnut. Born April 10, 1926 in Princeton, she was a daughter of John Cleve and Helen Marie (Kane) Shearer. She married Kenneth Baumgartner on March 23, 1946, in Tampico. He preceded her on Dec. 6, 2010. Jerria was a member of the Ohio United Methodist Church and Bureau County Home Extension. She enjoyed reading, crocheting, sewing, knitting, gardening, baking, cooking and traveling, especially camping. She also was a member of the Swinging Stars Square Dance Club, and loved ballroom and round dancing. Surviving are her children, Linda Lauritzen of Henry, Kevin (Jennifer) Baumgartner of Princeton and Brenda (David) Frazier of Cambridge; a sister, Bonnie Rae Cox of Colona; six grandchildren, Amber (Darb) Calvert, Brian (April) Lauritzen, Chad (Mary) Waterhouse, Kurtis Baumgartner, Amy (Jimmy) Russelburg and Angela Baumgartner; seven great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews. She also was preceded by six brothers and four sisters, and a son-in-law, Darrel Lauritzen. Visitation will be from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday, April 2, at the Garland Funeral Home in Walnut. Funeral services will be at 10:30 a.m. Monday, April 3, at the Garland Funeral Home in Walnut with Pastor Brian Moore officiating. Burial will be at Elm Lawn Memorial Park in Princeton. A memorial has been established in her memory. Online condolences may be left at www.garlandfuneralhome.com.

Anita J. Dimmig - 88

11/25/1928 - 3/16/2017
Formerly of Walnut, Illinois

 Anita J. Dimmig, age 88, formerly of Walnut, IL died Thursday, March 16, 2017 at DeKalb County Rehab and Nursing Center in DeKalb.

Anita was born on November 25, 1928 in Princeton, IL the daughter of George H. and Viola (Gallentine) Cameron.  She was united in marriage to Richard C. Dimmig on August 3, 1962 in Mendota, IL.  He preceded her in death on September 23, 1996.

She is survived by one daughter Jan (Bruce) Dimmig Olson of Leland, IL;  4 grandchildren Katrina Brandau of St. Charles, IL, Andrea Dimmig Potts of St. Louis, MO, Benjamin and Nathan Sachse of Leland, IL; one niece Cathy Capp of Rock Falls, IL and one nephew J.R. Cameron of Citrus Springs, FL.

She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, and 2 brothers.

Visitation will be held on Saturday March 18, 2017 from 2 to 3 p.m. at the Garland Funeral Home in Walnut.  Funeral services will be conducted on Saturday at 3 p.m at the funeral home with the Rev. Gary Brooks, pastor of Malden United Methodist Church officiating.  Burial will be in Walnut Cemetery.  A memorial has been established to the Alzhiemers Association or  Charity of the Donors Choice in lieu of flowers

Roland A. Egan - 89

12/14/1927 - 3/5/2017
Deer Grove, Illinois DEER GROVE- Roland A. Egan, age 89 of Deer Grove, passed away Sunday, March 5, 2017 at CGH Medical Center in Sterling. Roland was born on December 14, 1927, in Sterling, to Edward and Blanch (Scully) Egan. He married his high school sweetheart, Rosemary Chandler, on Thanksgiving Day, November 27, 1947 at St. Mary Catholic Church in Tampico where he has been a lifelong member. He has lived and farmed in the same vicinity all his life. He has been a Drainage Commissioner for many ages. He was on the school board when the Hahnaman School was built. Roland sold seed corn and traveled with the company to many places- Spain, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, Belgium, Austria, England, Hawaii, Mexico, Bahamas and many states here. He and his wife belonged to the Swinging Stars Square Dance Club for 25 years and danced many places. They belonged to the Good Sams Camping Club for 25 years and camping with the Bureau Valley Sams locally, holding offices locally and state wise. They made many friends in their 69 years of marriage. Survivors include his wife; his three sons, Robert Anthony (Kathy) Egan of Chicago, Russell Edward (Regina) Egan of Nashville and Richard Allen (Lori) Egan of Walnut; nine grandchildren, Erica, Derek, Heather, Thomas, Robert M., Brendan, Quentin, Joshua and Aaron and seven great grandchildren, Kile, Ryley, Caitlin, David, Collin, Ellie and Rahyana. He was preceded in death by his parents and two sisters, Helen Miller and Genevieve Devine and one grandson, Dustin Egan. Visitation will be Wednesday, March 8, 2017 from 4:00-7:00 P.M. at the Garland Funeral Home in Walnut with the Rosary recited at 3:45 P.M. Celebration of the Mass of Christian Burial will be Thursday, March 9, 2017 at 10:30 A.M. at St. Mary Catholic Church in Tampico with an hour visitation before Mass, starting at 9:30 A.M. Burial will follow at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Tampico. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the church or the Alzheimer’s Association.

Genevieve Hermeyer - 91

1/2/1926 - 3/1/2017
Dixon, Illinois Genevieve A. Hermeyer, age 91 of Dixon, died Wednesday, March 1, 2017 at Liberty Court Assisted Living Center in Dixon. Genevieve was born on January 2, 1926 in Ohio, Ill., the son of Francis and Catherine (Whalen) O’Brien. She married Paul Hermeyer on October 9, 1948 in Huntington Park, CA. He preceded her in death on May 11, 2015. She worked as an aid at Perry Memorial Hospital in Princeton. She then worked many years at Dixon State School and retired from Elgin State School in 1987. She enjoyed baking and was a member of St. Anne’s Catholic Church in Dixon and formerly, Immaculate Conception in Ohio. Survivors include her daughter, Paula Reynolds of Dixon; four sons, Greg (Kathy) Hermeyer of Dixon, Kirby (Cindy Burgess) Hermeyer of Ohio, Tim (Kathy Jean) Hermeyer of Princeton and Todd Hermeyer of Ohio; one sister, Josephine King of Ohio; thirteen grandchildren, twenty four great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband; four brothers; two sisters and her granddaughter, Bridget Reynolds. Visitation will be on Sunday, March 5, 2017 from 2:00 to 5:00 P.M. at Garland Funeral Home in Walnut with the Rosary recited at 4:45 P.M. Celebration of the Mass of Christian Burial will be on Monday, March 6th at 10:00 A.M. at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Ohio with Rev. Thomas Shaw, Celebrant. Burial will be at St. Patrick Cemetery in Maytown, Ill. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Unity Hospice or charity of donor’s choice.

Verla L. Fordham - 94

7/25/1922 - 2/27/2017
Geneseo, Illinois

GENESEO- Verla L. Fordham, 94 of Geneseo, died Monday, February 27, 2017 at Good Samaritan Nursing Home in Geneseo.

Verla was born on July 25, 1922 in Fairfield Township, the daughter of Harry L. Teske and Mabel A. (Yonk) Teske. She married Marvin Fordham on July 21, 1946 in Manlius. He preceded her in death on November 9, 2010. Verla worked at General Electric in Morrison for many years. She was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Manlius.

Survivors include her children, Kenneth (Deborah) Fordham of Eldridge, Iowa and Joan (Dan) Raney of Raymore, Missouri; many nieces, nephews, great nieces and great nephews.

She was preceded in death by her husband; her parents; two sisters, Bernadine Merdian and Alverda Swanson and one brother, Orville Teske.

Visitation will be Friday, March 3, 2017 from 9:00- 10:30 A.M. at Trinity Lutheran Church in Manlius. Funeral service will follow at 10:30 A.M. at the church. Burial will be at Manlius Cemetery. 

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society or the American Diabetes Association. 

Jack Fahs - 86

4/23/1930 - 2/17/2017
Walnut, Illinois WALNUT- John F. “Jack” Fahs, 86, of Walnut, died on Friday morning, February 17, 2017 at his home, with his family by his side. Jack was born on April 23, 1930 in Ohio, Illinois the son of Edward and Florence (Albrecht) Fahs. He married Patricia Quinn in 1956 at St. John's Church in Walnut. Jack was a member of Red Oak United Methodist Church. He was an agent for Standard Oil for over 20 years, retiring in 1985. Jack enjoyed collecting antique cars and hunting pheasants with his sons. Those surviving are his wife, Patricia, of Walnut; a daughter, Laurel (John) Martenson of Eau Claire, Wisc.; 2 sons, John R. Fahs, of Davenport, Iowa and Edward Q. Fahs (Debra) of Ashton; 2 sisters, Anna Mae Pedersen of Los Altos, Calif. and Edwardine Gross of Princeton; grandchildren, Maria, Catherine, Hillary, Nathan, Aaron, Carissa and Christopher; and five great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents. The visitation will be from 9-11 AM on Monday, February 20th followed by the funeral service at 11 AM at Red Oak United Methodist Church in Walnut with Reverend Judy Giese, pastor, officiating. Burial will be at Walnut Cemetery. Arrangements are under the direction and care of the Garland Funeral Home in Walnut.

Hazel - 91

11/20/1925 - 2/16/2017 AMBOY – Hazel Joyce Draper, 91, of Amboy, died Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017, at her home. Joyce was born Nov. 20, 1925, in Sublette, the daughter of Glenn Ormond and Hazel (Anderson) Conner. Joyce attended Ohio schools, and Sauk Valley College in later years. She served her country in World War II as a civilian clerk-typist at the Navy headquarters in Washington, D.C., and at war’s end was employed at a law office in Princeton. She was a lifelong member of Ohio United Methodist Church, a member of the Methodist Woman’s Organizations, served as a Sunday school teacher, and was secretary on the board of trustees. Joyce married Merrill “Pat” Draper on Oct. 18, 1946, and lived in rural Lee County on the farm, until moving to Amboy in 2010. When her children were a bit older, she was employed at the USDA Service Center in Amboy and was a weekly columnist for the Dixon Telegraph and the Amboy News, relating the trials and tribulations of a “Rural Pearl.” Her interest included a great deal of reading to her children and grandchildren, and also served as their number one cheerleader. The Lee County 4-H program ranked high on her interest list, and she freely admitted to being an avid political junkie. She also was a loyal Chicago Bears fan, especially during the glory years. She loved life, God, her family, church, Arizona, and was a founding member of the Domino Club. Good family times included camping, showing 4-H animals on the fair circuit, and never missing any school activities. One of her many dreams came true when a committee of patriotic and grateful citizens invited her to join them in their determination to honor the Ohio veterans of all wars with a memorial, and it was dedicated on Nov. 11, 2011, and will be a reminder for everyone to never forget those who sacrificed for freedom of all. She is survived by one daughter, Kelli Lynn (Jane McCaslin) Draper of Rock Falls; one son, Thomas Merrill (Theresa) Draper of Amboy; one daughter-in-law, Sandra Dewey Draper (wife of Michael Draper, deceased) of Amboy; four grandchildren, Jonathan Draper, Mathew (Katie) Draper, Nathan Draper, and Lydia Draper; one great-grandchild, Curtis Michael Draper; two sisters, Glenda (Donald) Brandenburg of Gold Canyon, Arizona, and Grace Piper of Chandler, Arizona; two brothers, Jerome Conner of Ohio, and Ormond Conner of Princeton; and numerous nieces, nephews, and special friends. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband; two sons, Michael Draper and Richard in infancy; two brothers, Fergus and Edward (Ted) Conner; one sister, Jeanne Sapp, and husband, Arthur Sapp; and four sisters-in-law, Sue Parker Conner, Lois Hopkins Conner, Mary Conner, and Ann Conner. A time of sharing will be from 4 to 6 p.m. Tuesday, and a memorial service at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Garland Funeral Home in Walnut, with the Rev. Judy Giese, pastor of Red Oak United Methodist, officiating. Cremation rites were accorded. Private burial of cremains will be at a later date at Walnut Cemetery

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