We don't write papers, we build scrapbooks



Tom Franklin Furray, 80

Tom Franklin Furray age 80, of McConnell, Illinois passed away Tuesday, February 15, 2022.

Tom was born April 13, 1941, in McConnell to Franklin and Viola (Niesman) Furray. He married Sharon Schultz on July 2, 1961, in McConnell. He spent more than 40 years at Berner Food in Alfolkey, Illinois as a cheesemaker. He enjoyed everything outdoors- hunting, trapping, fishing, wood gathering and sports. He took motorcycle trips to Alaska and Canada. He loved his Irish Setter Lizzie, and his garage cat Floppsey Mopsey and his Willy’s trucks. He was a member of the McConnell Area Historical Society, the South Wayne Trap Shooting Club and was a board member and the grounds keeper of the Silent Hill Cemetery in McConnell.

Tom is survived by his wife Sharon Furray of McConnell; 3 nieces- Mary, Becky, Sheila Bawden; 2 nephews- Chuck and Kim; beloved friends- Brad Allen and Casey Allen.

He is preceeded in death by his parents; 2 sisters- Donna Miller and Lela (Fieldstad) McQuarrie.

Memorial Services will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, February 25, 2022, at Leamon Funeral Home in Lena. A visitation will be from 12:00p.m. until time of service on Friday, February 25, 2022. Officiating will be Pastor Roger Bronkema. Cremation Rites have been accorded.

A memorial has been established in his name. Condolences may be sent to the family at http://www.leamonfh.com


Dick Bailey, 81

The perfect day for Dick Bailey was being outdoors, searching for morels, hunting, fishing or just spending time on the river. Richard A. Bailey, born October 3, 1940 in Hanover, Illinois, passed away at home surrounded by family at the age of 81 on Friday, February 12, 2022, after a long battle with cancer. Parents were Leslie L. Bailey and Genevieve V. (Garrow) Bailey of Savanna. He married Ramona G. (Gallagher) Bailey on February 14, 1992 and passed just before celebrating 30 years of marriage.

Richard (Dick) graduated from Savanna High School with the class of 1958. After serving 2 years in the Navy, aboard the aircraft carrier USS Midway, with 6 months in the Tonkin Gulf during the Vietnam conflict, he returned to complete his college degree at Western Illinois University graduating with a business education degree in 1969. After 1 year of teaching at Algoma High School in Algoma, Wisconsin, he taught business classes and coached football and wrestling at Lanark High School for 7 years.

After a short break from teaching and 3 years as a general contractor, he began working at Metform Corporation in Savanna, retiring in 2003 as Sales Manager after 23 years of service. In his retirement years he enjoyed fishing, hunting and woodworking. He was a member of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Clinton, Iowa and served as an elder for a number of years. He loved helping friends with building and repair projects. He even managed to do a few projects for his loving wife Ramona (Monie). Even more, he loved spending time with his 3 children, their spouses and 9 grandchildren.

Richard was preceded in death by his parents Leslie L. and Genevieve V. (Garrow) Bailey; a brother Wesley C. Bailey; half-brother Charles (Chuck) Bailey; his father & mother-in-law George G. and Anna M. Gallagher and several aunts and uncles. He is survived by his wife Ramona (Monie); 3 daughters, Jamie (Corey) Engel of Freeport, IL, Sara Richmond of Elizabeth, IL and Breanna (John) Rath of Bettendorf, IA; 9 grandchildren, Peyton Engel, Kally Richmond, Abby Richmond, Preston Engel, Gage Rath, Ben Richmond, Amie Richmond, Brynner Rath and Reeve Rath; a sister Patsy M. Raab of Clinton, IA; 2 half-brothers Jack (Maria) Bailey of Virginia Beach, VA and Robert Bailey of Savanna, IL. and several nieces and nephews.

A funeral service was held 10:00am Saturday, February 19, 2022 at St. John Lutheran Church. Inurnment was at Savanna Township Cemetery with Military Honors following the funeral. A Celebration of Life was also held from 12:30pm – 3:30pm at Manny’s in Savanna on Saturday, February 19, 2022.

William “Mike” Miller, 62

William “Mike” Miller, 62, passed away after a hard fight with emphysema on Monday, February 14, 2022, in Madison, Wisconsin, surrounded by his wife and children. A visitation was held on Friday, February 18, 2022, from 5:00-8:00 pm at Law Jones Funeral Home in Hanover, Illinois, as well as one hour prior to the funeral service on Saturday. Funeral services were held on Saturday, February 19, at 11:00 am at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Hanover, Illinois.

Mike was born February 2, 1960 in Rockford, Illinois, to Dixie Gayton and William Miller. He moved to Hanover, Illinois, in 1973 where he graduated high school, met, and married the love of his life, Diana, and raised three children. Mike and Diana celebrated 40 wonderful years of marriage in October 2021. He also worked as a machinist at Kelly Springfield (Titan Tire) for over 42 years, retiring in 2020.

Mike never met a stranger and had an infectious smile that so many will remember. He was always up for a good time and never shy to share his opinion. He particularly loved spending summers with his family and “river family” on the beach. Mike also enjoyed being in the woods hunting, traveling, hitting the slopes all winter, and being everybody’s volunteer photographer. Recently, he was thrilled to have his photo The Old Barn featured in the 2022 Jo-Carroll Energy calendar. Mike was very proud of his three children and would often be heard bragging of their lives and accomplishments. Over the past seven years, he may have found his favorite role yet, being “Papa” to his four grandchildren and three “grand-puppies.”

Mike is so dearly missed by his wife Diana; children Josh (Paige) of East Dubuque, Illinois; Jeremy of Hanover, Illinois; and Kayla (Cody Graves) of Elizabeth, Illinois; grandchildren Aiden, Adeline, Izabella, and Simon; father Bill of Hanover, Illinois; and many brothers, sisters, and in-laws. He is preceded in death by his mother Dixie and brother Brian.


Gene C. Jordan, 87

Gene C. Jordan, age 87, of Orangeville, IL, passed away Friday, February 11 at SSM Health in Monroe, WI. A celebration of his life will be held at a later date. Currently, friends and family are invited to share in his life and many memories at walkermortuary.com.

Gene was born July 7, 1934, in Winslow, IL to Clifford and Ruth (Weckerly) Jordan. He attended Salem, a one room schoolhouse outside of McConnell through 8th grade, and Winslow School until they redrew the boundary lines when he transferred to Orangeville High School. At 17 he enlisted in the US Marine Corps and left to serve in Korea. He was in the 7th Marine, 1st Battalion, Able Company, Anti-Tank Company/Weapons Company. He shipped over on November 10, 1952 and returned on November 10, 1953. He said he never forgot the date because it was the Marine Corps birthday. Later in life he enjoyed reminiscing about his Marine buddies, made a point of looking them up and staying in touch (Ajiebo, Bob and Pete). Gene and June attended several Marine Corps reunions for their division. He was a member of The McConnell American Legion Post 1225 and the Korean War Veterans. Several years ago he was interviewed about his experiences in Korea. That interview can be viewed here. He was very proud that his children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and beyond could hear his story.

Gene returned to the McConnell/Orangeville area when he was discharged and worked a variety of jobs, including at the Orangeville cheese factory. He played softball and baseball in the Freeport area in his free time. Gene later took a technical course and got a job repairing televisions for Hartman’s in Freeport. When Kelly-Springfield moved to Freeport he was hired, working there for 30 years in various positions, ending as a labor trainer when he retired.

Gene married June Holloway on June 15, 1957 at the Winslow Methodist parsonage by Reverend Murray. They raised their family in Orangeville, enjoying friends and family vacations, planting big gardens, and attending school sporting events. For many years Gene was a volunteer coach for Orangeville summer baseball teams including Little League. They enjoyed warm weather and wintering in Yuma, Arizona and had a community of friends there, as well. He loved sports (the Packers and the Cubs), fishing (especially with Harry), hunting and gardening. He raised bumper crops of sweet onions and provided produce for his neighborhood. He believed in working hard, arriving early and enjoying good food with friends and family.

Gene will be dearly missed by his wife, June and children Brenda Pearson of Massbach; Vickie Toschak (John) of Yorkville; Jeffrey Jordan (Connie) of Hartland, WI. His brother David Jordan (Shirley) of Rock City. His grandchildren Emily Hubbard (Ashley), Morgan Pearson, Zachary Toschak, Jordan Toschak, Benjamin Toschak, Rachel O’Neill (Ryan), and Anna Jordan (fiancé Steve Kamke). His great grandchildren Elivia and William Hubbard, Zoe and Zachary Toschak, and Ryder and Raegan O’Neill.Several nieces and nephews and great nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents Clifford and Ruth Jordan; his brother John, and his sister-in-law Inge Jordan.

In 2018 Gene participated in a VetsRoll trip to Washington DC and truly enjoyed that meaningful experience. Friends and family wishing to send memorials can send contributions to the VetsRoll organization in his name.

The family would also like to thank the staff at SSM Health in Monroe, WI for their excellent care and compassion for Gene and his family during his last days.


Mary Engelke, 94

Mary Engelke, age 94, of Stockton, IL passed away Tuesday, February 15, 2022 at Lena Living Center. She was born April 15, 1927 in Massbach, IL to the late Henry and Lydia (Zink) Haas. Mary married Paul Engelke on February 14, 1954. Paul passed away May 13, 2008.

Mary was a member of Christ Lutheran Church in Stockton. She was a 1944 High School graduate and went on to attend Platteville State Teacher College. Mary and Paul farmed in the Platteville area for a few years before moving to Stockton in 1958. They owned and operated Engelke Feed Services in Chadwick for 11 years. On March 1, 1971 they purchased a department store in Stockton known as Mary’s Shoppe. She loved to canning and gardening.

Mary is survived by several nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Paul; her brothers, John Haas, Melvin Haas and Lawrence Haas; and her infant sister.

A private family service will be held. Interment will take place at St. John Lutheran Cemetery in Massbach. A memorial fund has been established. Condolences may be shared at http://www.hermannfuneralhome.com.


Lauren Ashley Gibson Schindler, 34

Born May 5, 1987, at Freeport Memorial Hospital, passed away at her home in Colorado Springs on February 6, 2022

Lauren was a cheerful and content little girl who loved the outdoors and her farm animals, especially her dog Apollo, her chickens, and her pet calf. Lauren had to be bribed with a McDonald's happy meal to hold her sister Joy when she was born. From that inauspicious start, Lauren would one day become a loving and devoted mother to two beautiful boys, Lukas (7) and Odin (4).

Most especially, Lauren loved horses. She wore out the knees of her jeans playing horses with her best friend Julie Kunde when they were in kindergarten. On their last day of high school, Lauren and Julie rode their horses to Hempstead High School and created quite a scene. Lauren was instrumental in bringing high school rodeo to Dubuque County, and she earned a 4th place finish in the state of Wisconsin's Barrel Racing Championship in her senior year of high school.

Lauren took her horse Ditto to the University of Northern Iowa with her because “Ditto was her best friend." She worked at the boarding stable morning and night to pay for Ditto's boarding costs.

While in college, Lauren discovered a passion for history and travel. She became a counselor with Camp Adventure, which took her to Germany. She met many interesting people in her travels, including her future husband Nathan (Nate) Schindler, a member of the United States Army. They were married in Lake Tahoe, CA on September 15, 2011. Soon thereafter, they were stationed in Stuttgart, Germany. They traveled extensively throughout Europe and even purchased authentic lederhosen to celebrate Octoberfest in nearby villages. Slinky, a pure-bred standard dachshund, was the first addition to their family. Lauren fell in love with Germany and considered it her spiritual home and the place she most loved.

While in Germany, Lauren earned a master's degree in International Relations from the University of Oklahoma. She created a position for herself on the base in Stuttgart and implemented an internship program for students studying cybersecurity. Lauren and Nate returned to Colorado Springs, and Lauren created a new position for herself with the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) at Cheyenne Mountain. Her efforts were recognized, and she was asked to join the consulting firm of Booz Allen Hamilton.

It was here that Lauren led a team in an effort to revolutionize and modernize classified data collection and mobile access to classified military systems. Lauren was also part of a larger team effort tasked with bringing innovative changes to the way the military provides network connectivity across the globe in a combat environment.

Lauren is survived by her husband Nate and her boys Lukas and Odin, her father Kenneth (Yvonne) Gibson, her mother Jodi (Catherine Peterson) Gibson, her sister Joy, and many beloved aunts, uncles, and cousins. She was preceded in death by her paternal grandparents Kenneth H. Gibson and Carolyn Manges, maternal grandparents Lorraine and Orin Brinkmeier, and her Aunt Terri Mitro.

A visitation was held for Lauren on February 10 at the Return to Nature Funeral Home and a funeral service was held at Ascension Lutheran Church on February 11, both in Colorado Springs. A memorial service will be held on March 5 at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Pearl City, IL starting at 11:00 a.m.

You might be interested in:


Reader Comments(0)