Diana “DeeDee” Thornton, 55, of Chebanse passed away on Sunday, April 26, 2020 at her home in Chebanse. She was born on May 19, 1964 in Kankakee, the daughter of Harvey and Barb (Heimberger) Gullquist. She married Jimmy Thornton in Chebanse on May 2, 1987 and he survives.
In addition to her husband, Jimmy Thornton of Chebanse, DeeDee is survived by two sons, Jon (Tara) Thornton of Alpharetta, GA and Aaron Thornton (Keely Sprimont) of Bradley; two grandchildren, Grace and Coulson Thornton; and one sister and brother-in-law, Cathy and Mike.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her brother, Bud; and her sister, Vickie.
Mrs. Thornton enjoyed gardening and loved her dogs.
A private memorial service will take place at Knapp Funeral Home in Clifton.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to It’s A Pittie Rescue.
Please share a memory of DeeDee at knappfuenralhomes.com.
To send flowers or a memorial gift to the family of Diana "DeeDee" Thornton please visit our Sympathy Store.
Dawn M. Johnson, 54, of Piper City, passed away after a long battle with cancer on Wednesday, April 22, 2020 at her home surrounded by her family.
Dawn was born April 21, 1966 in Kankakee, the daughter of Bob and Kay (Coy) Bertrand. She married Matthew Johnson on October 18, 1986 in Bourbonnais, and he survives.
Besides her husband, Matthew Johnson, she is survived by three sons, Jeremiah Johnson of Chicago, Jerod Johnson of Mattoon, and Justin Johnson of Piper City; one granddaughter, Ruby Jean Johnson; her father, Bob Bertrand of Clifton; two brothers, Todd (Julie) Bertrand of Piper City and Jason (Heather) Bertrand of Bradley; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Gary and Barbara Johnson of Bradley; one sister-in-law, SuAnne (Paul) LaRocque of Bourbonnais; and many nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her mother.
Mrs. Johnson was involved in Scrapy Quilters sewing group in Piper City, loved the Chicago Bears, Chicago Cubs, camping, and traveling in recent years to Arizona. Dawn enjoyed spending time with her family, especially her granddaughter. She graduated from BBCHS in 1985 where she was involved with athletics and cheerleading.
Private services will be held with burial at Brenton Twp. Cemetery in Piper City.
Memorials may be made to Northwestern Medical Center Cancer Research.
Arrangements by Knapp-Redenius Funeral Home in Gilman.
Helen Reising Tschosik, 89, passed away at the Highland Oaks Nursing Home in Elgin.
The family has requested a private funeral service.
Knapp-Redenius Funeral home is handling the arrangements.
Joyce Smith Wall, 87, of West Peoria and formerly of Watseka, passed away in West Peoria on Friday, April 17, 2020 due to natural causes.
Joyce was born September 10, 1932 in Rensselaer Indiana, the only daughter of Don and Louella (Kanne) Smith. After the death of her mother in 1934, she was raised by Ray O and Lois (Reisling) Smith also of Rensselaer. She attended Rensselaer schools and graduated from Rensselaer High School in 1950. Joyce was always very proud of her attendance of Indiana American Legion Auxiliary Hoosier Girls State.
She married Wayne Wall in Rensselaer IN on June 3, 1950. They were married for 64 years until his death in 2013. They made their home in the Watseka area. In the early years of their marriage Joyce was a homemaker and helped Wayne on the farm. She later worked in sales at several establishments in Watseka. In 1972 she began working at First Trust and Saving Bank in Watseka, where she became the first female loan officer. In 1979 she bought Jack and Jill children’s clothing store. Later she opened a second location in Kentland IN, followed by the purchase of Ashton’s, a woman’s clothing store. She opened Joyce’s Fashions in Watseka. She and Wayne opened The Right Fit men’s clothing in Kentland. During this time, they put on many fashion show luncheons at various locations in Watseka and Kentland.
Mrs. Wall spent many years supporting Wayne, her children and grandchildren at the Iroquois Co. Fair and other livestock shows. She never missed a dance recital, graduation, birthday, confirmation, wedding or concert in which any of her kids or grandkids were involved.
Joyce was an active member of Home Extension and President of the Iroquois Co Home Extension Board. She was also a member of Watseka Business and Professional Organization and the Watseka Chamber of Commerce.
She is preceded in death by her husband Wayne. Also preceding her were cousins Nancy (Smith) Stevens and Bill Smith, with whom she was raised, and one half-brother Hal Smith.
Joyce is survived by her three children: Paula Duis, Champaign, Sue Wall Bloomfield, IN and Tom Wall (Charlotte) of Hopedale, IL. Eight grandchildren: Julie Blunier (Dustin) of Hanna City, IL, Robbie Duis (Chelsea) of Channing TX, Kate Duis (Dennis Paras) of Cheverly, MD, Leslie Matherly (Kyle) of Bloomington, IN, Britton Sobkoviak (Letha) of Spencer IN, Kristin Jones (Jacob) of Pontiac, IL, Ashley Moritz (Brad) of Ashkum, IL, Lucas Wall (Ashley) of Hopedale, IL., and ten great grandchildren. Also surviving are one half-brother, Dave Smith, a sister-in-law Betty (Wall) Leonard of Watseka and cousins ,Patty Smith, Phyllis Smith both of Rensselaer and Linda Smith of Indianapolis, IN.
Joyce’s family would like to thank the staff from Heddington Oaks for their care and kindness toward her over the last 3 years.
Visitation will be on Saturday, August 15, 2020 from 1-2 pm at the Knapp Funeral Home in Watseka with the funeral to follow at 2:00 pm. Burial will follow at Oak Hill Cemetery in Watseka.
Memorials may be made in her name to the Iroquois Co Fair Association.
Please share a memory of Joyce at knappfuneralhomes.com.
To send flowers or a memorial gift to the family of Joyce Smith Wall please visit our Sympathy Store.
Pauline Sheth, 85, of Watseka passed away on Thursday, April 16th, 2020 at Watseka Rehab & Healthcare.
Cremation rites have been accorded by Baier Funeral Home in Watseka.
John D. Neukomm Jr., 68, of Cissna Park passed away at his home on Tuesday, April 14, 2020. He was born on March 31, 1952 in Watseka, the son of John and Margaret (Steiner) Neukomm Sr. He married Joy D. Knapp on September 21, 1973 in Watseka and she preceded him in death on May 21, 2019. He was also preceded in death by his parents and one brother, Dave Neukomm.
He is survived by one son, Jerry (Nancy) Neukomm of Cissna Park; one daughter, Marlene (Travis) McWethy of Cissna Park; four grandchildren, Sam Roberts, Kaylee McWethy, Samantha Neukomm and Dalton McWethy; and one great-grandson, William Roberts. He is also survived by one brother, Donald (Cathy) Neukomm of Cissna Park and two sisters, Carolyn (Norman) Cary of Ft. Myers, FL and Mary (Don) Stadeli of Silverton, OR.
John was a lifelong farmer in the Cissna Park area. He was a member of the First Christian Church in Hoopeston. John enjoyed Illinois basketball, Cubs baseball, raising cattle, and spending time with his grandkids.
Private graveside services will be held at the Cissna Park Cemetery with Shawon Wise officiating.
Memorials may be made to Iroquois Memorial Hospice or American Lung Association for Mesothelioma Research.
Arrangements are by Knapp Funeral Home in Cissna Park.
Roger A. Gray, 64 of Watseka passed away at his home on Saturday, April 11, 2020. He was born on October 30, 1955 in Watseka, the son of Cecil and Helen (Kaufman) Gray and they preceded him in death.
He is survived by his girlfriend, Edie Cuprys of Watseka; one son, Kory Gray of Hattiesburg, MS; two grandchildren, Devon Gray and Paytyn Gray; one brother, Charles (Mariann) Gray of Watseka; and one sister, Peggy (Glenn) Thomas of White Heath.
Mr. Gray was a member of State Line Riders Motorcycle Club.
Cremation rites will be accorded by Knapp Funeral Home in Watseka.
Please share a memory of Roger at www.knappfuneralhomes.com
Paul E. Johnson, 80, of Gilman passed away on Friday, April 10, 2020 at his home in Gilman. He was born on November 19, 1939 in Lansing, MI, the son of James A. and Aleta (Weir) Johnson. He married Marguerette Wade Shuman on July 7, 1962 in Kankakee and she preceded him in death on February 10, 2004. He was also preceded in death by his parents and daughter in law, Linda Johnson.
Surviving are four children, David E. Johnson of Gilman, Andrew J. Johnson of Gilman, Susan M. Johnson of Buckeye, AZ, and Michael E. Johnson of Gilman; two grandchildren, Nicole and Logan Johnson; six siblings; and special friend, Marla Beedy of Gilman and her two children, Scott (Dawn) Beedy of Kankakee and Kim (James) McCormack of Herscher, IL.
Mr. Johnson served in the United States Marine Corp. He was a life member of the American Legion, VFW, Marine Corp. Heritage League, Disabled American Veterans, and AMVETS. He enjoyed woodworking and model trains.
Private graveside services will be held on Thursday, April 16, 2020 at Danville National Cemetery in Danville, IL.
Memorials may be made to Shriners Hospital of Chicago or Wreaths Across America.
Arrangements by Knapp-Redenius Funeral Home in Gilman.
Please share a memory of Paul at knappfuneralhomes.com.
Leslie L. Garrelts, 81 of Crescent City passed away on Sunday, April 12, 2020 at Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana, He was born on September 8, 1938 in Loda, the son of Ernest and Marie (Scherf) Garrelts. He was preceded in death by his parents, one brother, LaVern Garrelts, and one sister, Patsy McNash.
He married Janice Brutlag in Woodworth on December 29, 1963 and she survives. He is also survived by two sons, Lyle (Dawn) Garrelts of Fowler, IN and Lloyd (Tonya) Garrelts of Nokomis; one daughter, Lynn (Mark) Sengele of Collinsville; three grandchildren, Brock (Heidi) Garrelts of Fowler, IN, Jenna (Trenton) Fadness of Silverdale, WA, and Luke Sengele of Collinsville; one great-grandson, Gunner Garrelts; two sisters, Phyllis Garner of Watseka and Beverly Ponton of Martinton; and five brothers, Virgil (Dorothy) Garrelts, of Kankakee, Wendell Garrelts of Milford, Leon (Barbara) Garrelts of Braidwood, Leroy (Sherry) Garrelts of Milford, and Larry Garrelts of Milford.
Mr. Garrelts was a member of St. Paul Lutheran Church in Woodworth and attended Calvary Lutheran Church in Watseka. He was a veteran of the US Army and worked at CIPS and Ameren for 34 years in various capacities, ending as a utility foreman. He owned Garrelts Real Estate and Auction Company for 34 years, and he also enjoyed farming.
Private services will be held at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Woodworth. Rev. Michael Stoeger will officiate.
Burial will be held at St. Paul’s Lutheran Cemetery in Woodworth with graveside military rites by Watseka American Legion Post #23 and Iroquois County VFW Post #7450.
Memorials may be made to St. Paul’s Lutheran School in Woodworth, Calvary Lutheran Preschool in Watseka, or to the donor’s choice.
Please share a memory of Leslie at www.knappfuneralhomes.com
L. Renee Tucker, 58 of Watseka passed away on Friday April 10, 2020 at Iroquois Memorial Hospital in Watseka. She was born on December 29, 1961 in Watseka the daughter of Bill and Patricia Hickman Tucker. In addition to her parents, Renee is survived by two aunts- Nancy Tucker and Elaine Hickman both of Watseka; several cousins including Wayne Hickman III, Robbie Hickman, and Orin Tucker.
Renee was a member of the Cary NC Methodist Church and enjoyed swimming. She was a bio-chemist for over 30 years with the USDA and served on the board of directors and held many positions with the Association of Glycogen Storage Disease. Renee was a participant and volunteer for the US Transplant Games for many years.
Private graveside services will be held at G.A.R. Cemetery in Watseka.
Memorials may be made to the donor’s choice.
Arrangements are by the Knapp Funeral Home in Watseka.
Please share a memory of Renee at knappfuneralhomes.com.
Karen Marie (Buff) Olson, 73, of Gilman passed away on April 5, 2020. She was born on August 21, 1946 in Watseka, the daughter of Loy and Leola (Berhle) Buff and they preceded her in death. She was also preceded in death by one sister, Marlene Buff and one son, who died shortly after birth.
She married Russell Olson in June of 1964 and he survives. Also surviving are two sons, Thad (Tami) Olson and Travis (Arnel) Olson; one sister, Bonnie (Tom) Ryszka; four grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.
Karen grew up in rural Thawville and attended Robert-Thawville School before moving to Gilman and graduating from Gilman High School. She loved people, animals, Avon, Barbies and Elvis. Karen never met a stranger.
Arrangements are by the Knapp-Redenius Funeral Home in Gilman.
Please share a memory of Karen at knappfuneralhomes.com.
Elmer M. Leydens, 92 of Gilman, passed away on Saturday, April 4, 2020 at his home. He was born on November 16, 1927, the son of Matthew and Minnie (Zeedyk) Leydens in Danforth and they preceded him in death. He was also preceded in death by one brother, Dale Leydens; one sister, June Bayston; and one grandson, Jason Leydens.
He married his spouse of 70 years, Inez Cook, on February 18, 1950 in Gilman and she survives. He is also survived by two daughters, Pam (Tim) Morris of Waterloo, IL and Cathy (Mike) Zirkle of Saint Amant, LA; two sons, Kim (Terry) Leydens of Gilman and Kevin (Barb) Leydens of Gilman; seven grandchildren, Tyler (Julie) Morris, Kerey (Jennifer) Leydens, Kaylee Leydens, Kyle (Missy) Leydens, Erica (Jonathon) Wahls, Ansley (Sam) Fox, and Christy (Stephen) Drago; thirteen great-grandchildren; and one brother, Ralph (Sharon) Leydens of Clifton.
Mr. Leydens was a member of Zion United Church in Gilman. Elmer began his career on November 8, 1950 with Uhlman Grain. He then served as Superintendent at Continental Grain Company, retiring August 1, 1990. Elmer served in the U.S. Army where he received the Army of Occupation Medal and the Japan World War II Victory Medal. He enjoyed all aspects of his life that involved spending time with his family and friends.
A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date. Memorials may be made to the donor’s choice.
Arrangements by Knapp-Redenius Funeral Home in Gilman.
Please share a memory of Elmer at www.knappfuneralhomes.com.
Walter Thomas Hissong, 6 months of Chebanse, passed away on Saturday, April 4, 2020 at Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana.
Walter was born on September 23, 2019 in Urbana.
He is survived by his mother, Danielle Studholme of Chebanse; his father, Aaron Hissong of Chebanse; one sister, Bonnie Devous of Gilman; maternal grandmother, Teresa Gray of Chebanse; maternal grandfather, David (Toni) Studholme of Braidwood; paternal great-grandmother, Cheryl Hyde of Texas; and many cousins, aunts, and uncles. He was preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Eddena Hissong and Shan Hyde.
A memorial service will be held at a later date.
Memorials may be made to Carle Foundation Hospital in memory of Walter or Carle Auxiliary House in Urbana.
To send flowers or a memorial gift to the family of Walter Thomas Hissong please visit our Sympathy Store.
Delorous M. Guard, 86 of Watseka passed away on Thursday, April 2, 2020 at Iroquois Resident Home in Watseka. She was born September 10, 1933 in Watseka, the daughter of Thomas and Myra (Latz) McCullough. She married Joseph C. Guard Sr. in Watseka on November 23, 1952 and he preceded her in death on May 2, 2003. She was also preceded in death by her parents, six brothers, four sisters, one son, Joseph Guard Jr., and one grandchild, R.J. Meara.
She is survived by one daughter, Sandra (Richard) Meara of Grayson, GA; two granddaughters, Jessica (Steven) Swett of Friendsville, TN and Shannon (Corey) Marsh of Grayson, GA; and four great-grandchildren, Cassie Swett, Lucas Marsh, Brooklynn Marsh, and Elijah Marsh. She is also survived by one brother, Robert McCullough of Watseka and two sisters, Barbara Walter of Mishawaka, IN and Doris Ash of Lebanon, IN.
Mrs. Guard was a member of the First Presbyterian Church in Watseka, and was a bookkeeper at McCullough Implement in Watseka for many years.
Private graveside services will be held on Monday, April 6, 2020 at Iroquois Memorial Park in Watseka. Pastor John Franklin will officiate.
Memorials may be made the First Presbyterian Church in Watseka or Iroquois Memorial Hospice.
Arrangements by Knapp Funeral Home in Watseka.
Edna Fatka Carriger, 93 of Gilman passed away on April 1, 2020 at Presence Merkle-Knipprath Nursing Home in Clifton. She was born December 23, 1926 in Chebanse, the daughter of Harry and Florence (Zimmerman) Burling. She married Harold E. Fatka in June 1952. He preceded her in death on May 27, 1973. She later married Claude E. Carriger on November 12, 1988 and he preceded her in death on February 10, 2013. She was also preceded in death by her parents, four brothers, and one sister.
Mrs. Carriger is survived by one son, Harold “Butch” (Debbie) Fatka of Gilman; one granddaughter, Nicole Fatka of Gibson City; two step-grandchildren, Chris Leonard and Johnny Leonard; and four step-great-grandchildren.
She enjoyed the outdoors and loved spending time with her grandchildren.
Private graveside services will be held at Brenton Township Cemetery in Piper City. Memorials may be made to Hospice of Kankakee Valley, American Diabetes Association, or to the Family’s Wishes.
Arrangements by Knapp-Redenius Funeral Home in Gilman.
Please share a memory of Edna at www.knappfuneralhomes.com.