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Helen L. Roe, 91

Helen L. Roe, 91, of Lena, IL formerly of Rockford, IL passed away on Tuesday, May 4, 2021 at the Lena Living Center, with her family by her side.

She was born on January 19, 1930 in Lena, IL to William “Bill” and Elizabeth (Brown) Duft. On February 16, 1950 Helen married R. Eugene “Buck” Roe in Freeport, IL. Helen worked for the Northwest Telephone Company in the village of Lena as a telephone operator, and later in life she owned and operated A Touch of Gingerbread in the Victorian Village in Rockford for many years.

Helen was a member of the Redeemer Lutheran decorating committee in Rockford. She enjoyed painting, crafting, quilting, cake decorating and golfing at the Lena Golf Club.

Helen is survived by her husband of 71 years, R. Eugene “Buck” Roe of Lena, their children; Christine “Chris” Kramer of Las Vegas, NV, John (Linda) Roe of Woodstock, IL, and Larry (Jodi) Roe of Rockford, IL; nine grandchildren; ten great-grandchildren; sister-in-law Doris “Dorie” Fransen; brother-in-law Roger Johnson; and two nephews Tom and Paul Fransen.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her step-mother Thelma Duft, sister Doris Johnson, son-in-law; Michael “Mike” Kramer, brothers-in-law; Ray Peterson and Robert Fransen.

Private family services will be held at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Lena, IL. Burial will be at Lena Burial Park. Rev. Rick Bader will officiate the services. Cremation rites have been accorded.

A memorial has been established in her memory. Condolences may be sent to the family at


Betty Marie (Blair) Gallagher, 89

Betty Marie (Blair) Gallagher passed away peacefully surrounded by family at the age of 89, on Wednesday, May 5, 2021, at Waverly Place, Stockton, Illinois after many years of living with Liposarcoma.

Betty was born January 12, 1932, the daughter of Glenn Sr. and Edna (Dolan) Blair in Stockton, Illinois. She graduated from Stockton High School. Betty married the love of her life, Wayne Gallagher on July 1, 1950, Nashua, IA. They were married until his death in 1999.

Betty’s pride and joy were her marriage and the raising of her three children. She loved being a grandmother and giving treats to her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. There was always a piece of chocolate and a hug to share. Betty enjoyed playing cards, watching the Green Bay Packers, and having a laugh with friends. She stayed (mostly) out of trouble with her best-friend of 60+ years Deloris Wampfler.

Betty will be dearly missed by her three children, Mark (Linda) Gallagher of Warren, Illinois, Lynne Wild of Stockton, and Brian Gallagher of Stockton; eleven grandchildren, Dustin (Tamara) Gallagher, Tracy (Darrin) Allison, Wendy Luke, Ryan (Kelly) Gallagher, Greg (Felicia) Gallagher, Elaine (Brian) Keeffer, Monica (Jim) McGivney, Tom Wild, Kelsey (Jason Bennett) Wild, Tristan (Jessica) Gallagher, and Cody (Michelle) Gallagher; 23 great-grandchildren, and 4 great-great grandchildren.

Betty is preceded in death by her husband, Wayne Gallagher, parents, Glenn Sr. and Edna Blair; one brother, Glenn Blair Jr .; sister, Janet Hammond; and son-in-law Tom Wild.

A funeral service was held at 11 a.m., Monday, May 10, 2021, at Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens, Freeport, Illinois for family only. Condolences may be shared at


Eugene (Gene) G Hesselbacher, 82

Eugene (Gene) G Hesselbacher age 82 of McConnell, IL passed away on Wednesday, May 5, 2021 surrounded by his family.

He was born May 29, 1938 in JoDaviess County to Ralph and Violet (Winter) Hesselbacher. Eugene and Vivian (Schulz) were married on Oct. 23, 1960 at Amity Lutheran Church in Lena IL and celebrated 60 years of marriage in 2020. Gene served in the US Army Reserves for 6 years. He was an active member at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Lena IL and a member of the McConnell Volunteer Fire Dept. since 1977. He attended Stockton High School from 1953-1956 and graduated from Freeport High School in 1957.

He was involved in farming most of his life. For several years he helped the road commissioner with grading roads, mowing and plowing snow. He liked to fish when he had time, enjoyed reading and watching western shows and was a friend to many and always willing to lend a helping hand. Gene had a great sense of humor. He hated shopping but if he had to go, you would always find him starting up a conversation with someone whether he knew them or not. He even enjoyed going out to eat so he could give the waitresses a hard time. He enjoyed being with family and his granddaughters. He will be missed by those who knew him even though he was a great teaser.

He is survived by his wife, Vivian, his daughters, Debbie Hesselbacher of McConnell IL and Amy Hesselbacher and her husband Brad Munda of Freeport IL, two granddaughters, Michaela Munda of St. Paul MN and Celeste Munda of Freeport IL. Sisters Verlee Kassel of Rockford IL, Kay Hesselbacher of River Falls WI and many nieces, nephews, and cousins. He was preceded in death by his parents, brother Ralph Jr., brother and sister-in-law, Wayne and Lynne Hesselbacher, Ronald and Peggy Hesselbacher, and brother-in-law Dave Kassel.

Visitation will be held on Saturday, May 15, 2021 from 9:00 am – 11:00 am at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church 118 E Mason St, Lena IL. Funeral will follow visitation at 11:00 am. Pastor Miho Yasukawa will be officiating the service.

Burial will take place at Lena Burial Park. Cremation rites have been accorded.

A memorial fund has been established in his name. Condolences may be sent to the family at


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