Thursday, December 9, 2010

Obit of Cynthia Franey

of Cynthia Franey

posted Dec 4, 2010 8:16 AM by Mary Runyon-Hanshew

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PIPER CITY — Cynthia Grace Franey, 26, Piper City, died
at 5:55p.m. Wednesday (Dec. 1, 2010) at Piper City Rehab & LivingCenter,
Piper City, following a courageous battle withcancer.

Her funeral Mass will be at 10:30 a.m. Monday at St.
Peter CatholicChurch, Piper City, with the Rev. Michael Pennock
officiating.Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery, Piper City. Visitation will
befrom 4 to 8 p.m. Sunday at Reilly-Redenius Funeral Home, PiperCity, with
recitation of the rosary at 3:30 p.m. Memorial gifts maybe made to her daughter
Judith’s education fund or to a charity ofthe donor’s choice.

Cindy was born July 9, 1984, in Fairbury, the daughter of
Jane(Boma) and William “Bill” Franey.

Surviving are her daughter, Judith Ann Matthews, Gilman;
herfather, William Franey, Piper City; two brothers, Bill (Melissa)Franey,
Decatur, and Michael Franey, Piper City; two sisters, Becky(Jeff) Swartz,
DeLand, and Jill (Nick) Jones, Morton; and manyaunts, uncles, nieces, nephews
and cousins.

She was preceded in death by her mother; her aunt, Judy
Mogged; andher grandparents, Jack and Marjorie Boma and John and

Cindy was a member of St. Peter Catholic Church, Piper
City. Shegraduated from Tri Point High School in 2003, attended ParklandCollege
for two years, and obtained a CNA certificate. She hadworked at the Gilman Dairy
Queen and as a CNA at PrairieviewLutheran Home, Danforth.

Cindy loved her daughter Judith very much and enjoyed the
time shehad with her. She also loved her family and doting on her
youngrelatives. Her hobbies included karate, music andphotography.

Cindy always had a smile and touched so many lives. She
will begreatly missed by her family and

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Rodney & Jessica Embrey 25th


CHATSWORTH -- Rodney and Jessica Embrey of
Chatsworth will celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary with a party with close
family and friends.

Embrey and Jessica Quinn were married Nov. 15, 1985, at the Baptist Church,

Their attendants were Harold Brewner and Christine Brewner.

They are the parents of Amber Embrey of Flanagan and Paige Embrey of

He worked at the Bloomington Public Library.

She works for Prairie Central School District.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Obit of Stella Nickrent

CHATSWORTH — Stella Nickrent,
93, a resident of Heritage ManorNursing Home in Gibson City, formerly of
Chatsworth, passed away at5:12 p.m. Friday (Nov. 5, 2010) at the home.

Mass of Christian burial will be at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday at St.Peter &
Paul Catholic Church, with the Rev. B.K. Tranofficiating. Visitation will be
from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at theMartin Funeral Home in Chatsworth, where a rosary
will be said at4:45 p.m. before the visitation. Memorials may be made to
theWashington County Senior Citizens of Okawville or St. Peter &Paul
Catholic Church. Interment will be in St. Patrick’s CatholicCemetery, rural

Stella was born June 24, 1917, in Red City, Franklin County, adaughter of
Frank and Mary Wiswiewski Wojtowicz. She married PeterNickrent on Jan. 27, 1936,
in DuBois. He preceded her in death in1998.

She is survived by two daughters, Mary Stork of Chatsworth andVirginia
(William) Mattingly of Ashley; one daughter-in-law, LenaNickrent of Forrest; one
son-in-law, Richard Doran of Fairbury;nine grandchildren; three
stepgrandchildren; 15great-grandchildren; 10 stepgreat-grandchildren;
onegreat-great-grandson; two great-great-granddaughters; one brother,Vincent
(Hilda) Wojtowicz of DuBois; and numerous nieces andnephews.

She was preceded in death by one son, Richard Nickrent; onedaughter, Roberta
Doran; one great-granddaughter, Megan LivingstonPropes; five brothers; three
sisters; and one son-in-law.

Mrs. Nickrent had worked for Nichols Homeshield and was ahomemaker.

She was a member of St. Peter & Paul Catholic Church and theAltar &
Rosary Society in Chatsworth.

Stella especially enjoyed her family, friends, country music andtraveling
with Pete.

This obituary may be viewed and private condolences sent to thefamily online
at www.martin-

Monday, September 13, 2010

Lyle "Ike" & Wilma Dehm 65th Anniversary

Lyle "Ike" & Wilma Dehm 65th Anniversary: ""

Gene & Carolyn Riha 40th Anniversary

Gene & Carolyn Riha 40th Anniversary: "



40th for Gene, Carolyn Riha

CHATSWORTH -- Gene and Carolyn Riha of Chatsworth will celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary with an open house at 5 p.m. today at their home. They also plan a trip to Ireland at a later date.

Riha and Carolyn Catlin were married Sept. 12, 1970, in Decatur. Their attendants were Don Dreesbach and Theresa Catlin Luebcke.

They are the parents of Melissa Cornish, St. Petersburg, Fla.; Mark (Heather) Riha, Spring, Texas; and Monica (Derrick) Maurer, Fairbury. They have eight grandchildren.

They were both teachers in Prairie Central school district.

He retired in 2007. She retired in 2009.



Hazel (Turner) Wells Obit

Hazel (Turner) Wells Obit: "





SENECA — Hazel E. Wells, 96, of Seneca, passed away, Thursday, Aug. 26, at Big Meadows Nursing Home in Savanna, Ill.

Funeral services will be at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 1, at First United Methodist Church in Seneca with the Rev. Tom Bourke officiating. Visitation will be one hour prior to services at church. Burial will be in Mount Hope Cemetery in Seneca.

Hazel was born Oct. 30, 1913, in Chatsworth , Ill., to George and Verna (DeMarcus) Turner. She married Kenneth Wells Aug. 7, 1933, in Pontiac. He died in January 1963.

She was a member of First United Methodist Church of Seneca.

Hazel moved to Seneca in 1943. She left there in 1964 to the Chicago suburbs, where she worked for 11 years. She returned to Seneca in 1975 and became very active at First United Methodist Church and also Ruth's Circle. In 2003, Hazel moved to Big Meadows Nursing Home in Savanna to be closer to her daughter.

Hazel enjoyed cooking, reading, craft work and quilting, but most of all, spending time with her family and friends.

She is survived by one daughter, Wanda (Merle) Long of Savanna; three sons, Jerald of Chicago, Donald (Joyce) of Madison, Ind., and Ronald of Seneca; nine grandchildren; and 12 great-grandchildren.

Hazel is preceded in death by her husband and parents.

Memorials may be directed to First United Methodist Church of Seneca or FHN Hospice, 773 W. Lincoln Blvd., Suite 403, Freeport, IL 61032.

The online guestbook may be viewed and remembrances shared at

Osborne-Nelson Funeral Home

135 Lincoln St., Seneca, IL 61360


Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Thomas Nance Runyon Obit

Thomas Nance Runyon Obit: "



CHATSWORTH — Thomas Nance Runyon, 79, Elko, Nev., formerly of Chatsworth, died July 10, 2010, in Carson City, Nev.

Cremation rites were accorded.

A family celebration of Tom’s life will be at 4 p.m. Sept. 12 at CAPS Park, Chatsworth.

Tom was born Feb. 23, 1931, in Cropsey. He married Marie Beck Poppel on May 29, 1953, in Joliet.

He is survived by his wife, Marie; daughters, Terry (Lance) Anderson, Robyn Pattani, Lynda (Darren) Nadin and Dawnyce Schutz; one son, Jay (Denise) Runyon; seven grandchildren and several great-grandchildren; brothers, Donald (Shirley) Runyon, Larry (JoAnn) Runyon and Richard (Donna) Runyon, all of Chatsworth; Erney (Diana) Runyon, Heyworth; and Randy (Terri) Runyon, Cabot, Ark.; sisters, June Arnold, Roberts; and Barbara Black and Mary Hanshew, both of Chatsworth; one brother-in-law, Roy Garrett, Hudson; and many nieces and nephews.

Tom was preceded in death by his parents, Grace Nance and Erney Clifford Runyon; an infant son; stepsons, Larry and Garry Poppel; and sister, Sandra Garrett.

Tom will be greatly missed by friends and family.



Monday, August 30, 2010

Donald Stork Obit

Donald Stork Obit: "



From Duffy-Pils Memorial Home

Husband of Mary Nickrent

Donald Eugene Stork, 74 of Fairbury passed away at 6:50 am, Saturday, August 28, 2010 at Fairview Haven Nursing Home, Fairbury.

Funeral mass will be 10:30 am, Wednesday, September 1, 2010 at Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Church, Chatsworth with Father BK Tran officiating. Burial will follow in St. Patrick’s Cemetery, Chatsworth with full military rites conducted by the Fairbury American Legion and VFW posts. Visitation will be 3 to 7 pm, Tuesday, August 31, 2010 with a rosary service at 2:45 pm at Duffy-Pils Memorial Home, Fairbury.

Don was born May 27, 1936 in Fairbury the son of Henry and Ida (Hanni) Stork. He married Kathryn Readle then Imogene Goad they both preceded him in death. He later married Mary Nickrent on February 14, 1997 in Pontiac. She survives in Fairbury.

Also surviving are three children; Georgia (Dan) LaFayette, Normal, Donald (Stephanie) Stork Jr., Normal, Ronald (Amy) Stork, Danvers, one step-son; Thomas (Beth) Albert, Pittsford, NY, three sisters; Lena (Gene) Jones, Helen (Fred) Voeste both of Forrest, Wilma (David) Kieser, Bloomington, eight brothers; Elmer (Darlene) Stork, Richard (Susie) Stork both of Chatsworth, Wilmer (Gwen) Stork, Wayne Stork both of Fairbury, Harvey (Alice) Stork, Chenoa, John (Eunice) Stork, Roberts, Edwin (Judy) Stork, Pontiac, Henry (Susan) Stork, Forrest, mother in-law; Stella Nickrent, Gibson City, 10 grandchildren and 2 step-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents, one sister and twin daughters; Sherrill Lynn and Pauline Sue Stork.

In lieu of flowers the family suggests that memorials be directed to Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Church, Chatsworth or Fairview Haven “Good Samaritan Fund”, Fairbury

Donald was drafted into the US Army in 1958 where he served as a medic. In 1960 he was employed as a carpenter for Honegger’s and later for Thrive Center, Fairbury. Later in life he served as an attendant for Hick’s gas Station in Fairbury as well as training horses at the Fairbury fairgrounds. He enjoyed spending time with his family and friends who will miss him dearly.


Becky Barker Story

Becky Barker Story: "

 From The Bugle




Becky Barker enjoys

painting people,

cherished pets and

indigenous rocks



Sara Schick el


“Art is everywhere,” said Becky Barker of rural


Barker is a portrait artist whose work graces the walls

of homes throughout the United States.

Her lifelong interest in art developed into serious

study and ultimately her own business.

“After my first child was born and he got older, I

started taking home-study classes,” she said.

She and her husband Rusty have been married 38

years and have four children, three of whom are living,

and four grandchildren.

The couple resides on her husband’s family farm, less

than two miles from the home she lived in as a child.

Barker began her Rainbow Trail Studio about 10 years

ago and balances her art along with her position as a paraprofessional

for the Prairie Central School District.

Jean Ertel of Gibson City commissioned Barker to

paint seven portraits over the years.

“I had my parents done. She made [a portrait] of my

husband’s parents for a Christmas gift,” Ertel explained.

“She just does a really good job. She never knows what

I’m going to throw at her,” laughed Ertel.

Rather than arranging for special sittings with her

subjects, Barker receives pictures of the person she is

going to paint.

This system works well as many of her clients are not

from the area and may even be from other states.

She has completed work for people in California,

Indiana, Florida, Colorado and Mexico.

In addition to portraits of people, Barker creates special

projects of beloved animals.

Often times, she is asked to paint pets that have

passed away.

While some of her paintings remain true to the photographs

they come from, Barker is sometimes asked

to combine several subjects from different photos into

one portrait.

“I love doing the skin tones, hair color and eyes,”

Barker admitted.

She was commissioned to paint a portrait of a mother

with her two children.

The son passed away and the mother wanted a portrait

of the family together.

Barker was supplied

with various photographs

of the family members.

She managed to adjust

the size, lighting, and

clothing so the newly created

portrait looked as if

the family members were

posed especially for the


The process is labor

intensive and it typically

takes her around 25 hours

to complete a portrait of

one person.

She added, “Along with

portraits, I also do rocks.”

The Rock-A-Baby creations

are intricate paintings

of animal on rocks.

“We live on a farm. A

lot of the rocks are indigenous

to the area which

means they came out of the

fields,” Barker explained.

In addition to painting,

Barker enjoys cooking,

sewing and reading.

She also has an interest in


“I’m retiring in a couple

years, so [travel] is on my

list,” she said.

Egypt and Paris top the

list of places she plans to go.


Saturday, August 21, 2010

Donna (Anglin) Baker Obit

Donna (Anglin) Baker Obit: "


Donna Gail Baker


Gail Baker, 52 of Chatsworth

passed away at 11:51 a.m.

on Monday, August 16, at

OSF St. James – John W.

Albrecht Medical Center in


Visitation will be 4 to 7

p.m. on Friday, August 20,

at Martin Funeral Home in


Cremation rites will be

accorded following visitation.

Memorials may be

made to the family.

Donna was born

February 5, 1958 in East

St. Louis, Ill., a daughter of

Raymond Anglin and Mary

(Carter) Felts.

She married James

Baker, June 26, 1977 in

Forrest. He survives.

Also surviving are: one

daughter: Tosha Baker-

Edwards of Chatsworth;

one son: Josh Baker of

Chatsworth; three grandchildren:

Kaely and Kenzie

Marthey; and Elijah

Edwards; two sisters: Linda

Steidinger of Fairbury and

Jackie Felts of Bloomington;

three brothers: Ronald

(Paula) Anglin of Oak Lawn;

Scott (Debbie) Anglin of

Fairbury; and Billy Anglin of

Pontiac; and several nieces

and nephews.

She was preceded

in death by her parents,

and one son-in-law, Matt


Donna Gail was a homemaker

her entire life.

She enjoyed Forensic

Investigation shows, WWE,

and going fishing. Her

favorite wrestler was John


She loved her grandchildren

and spending time

with her family to whom

she was very close.


Thursday, August 19, 2010

August and The Chatsworth Train Wreck

August and The Chatsworth Train Wreck: ""

Eldon & Gladys Brunner 65th Anniversary

Eldon & Gladys Brunner 65th Anniversary: "

From: Kankakee Daily Journal

Brunner 65th Anniversary Eldon and Gladys Brunner celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary July 9 with a family gathering at the Old Route 66 Restaurant in Dwight.

Their children and their spouses are: Roger and Niesje Steinkruger Brunner, of Fairbanks, Alaska; and Betty and Joe Roza, of Santa Rosa, Calif. The couple have three granddaughters and one great-granddaughter.

They were married July 9, 1945, at the Evangelical Church in Chatsworth.

They have lived in many places, including Witchita Falls, Texas; Linz, Austria; Champaign; Fort Worth, Texas; Cardiff by the Sea, Calif.; Idaho Falls, Idaho; Glen Ellyn; Matawan, N.J.; and Berwyn, Pa.


Dick & Marge Whittenbarger 40th Anniversary

Dick & Marge Whittenbarger 40th Anniversary: "




45th for Dick, Margie Whittenbarger

CONGERVILLE -- Dick and Margie Whittenbarger of Congerville will celebrate their 45th wedding anniversary.

Whittenbarger and Margie Klehm were married Aug. 21, 1965, at Evangelical United Brethren Church, Chatsworth. Their attendants were Robert Whittenbarger and Ruth Klehm.

They are the parents of Robin (Larry) Timm, Peoria, and Tracy (Rob) Sapp, Goodfield. They have five grandchildren.

He retired from GTE in 1993.

She retired from GTE in 2000.



Sunday, August 1, 2010

Harvey & Phyllis Ashman 40th Anniversary

Harvey & Phyllis Ashman 40th Anniversary: "



40th for Harvey, Phyllis Ashman**

CHATSWORTH -- Harvey and Phyllis Ashman of Chatsworth are celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary with a family dinner.

Ashman and Phyllis Sharp were married Aug. 1, 1970, at the Lutheran Church in Chatsworth.

They are the parents of Tina (Pete) Beebe of Pontiac. They have two grandchildren.

He worked in highway maintenance for the Illinois Department of Transportation, retiring in 2009. She was a customer service sales representative for Homeshield, retiring in 2008.


Sunday, July 25, 2010

Violet M. Dohman Obit

Violet M. Dohman Obit: "


Violet M. Dohman



Published: Friday, July 23, 2010 8:52 AM CDT

Violet M. Dohman, 94, of Vienna and formerly of Chatsworth, died at 1:25 p.m. Saturday, July 17, at Union County Hospital in Anna.

She is survived by three daughters, including Elaine K. Dohman of Anna, and two sons.

Funeral services wil be conducted in Chatsworth at a later date.

Rendleman & Hileman Funeral Home in Jonesboro is in charge of arrangements.


Monday, July 19, 2010

Jim & Thelma (Ringo) Wickenhauser 50th Anniversary

Jim & Thelma (Ringo) Wickenhauser 50th Anniversary: "


From Chatsworth Illinois Memories



HEYWORTH — Jim and Thelma Wickenhauser of Heyworth will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary with an open house from 2 to 5 p.m. July 31 at Heyworth Christian Church.

Wickenhauser and Thelma Ringo were married July 31, 1960, at Heyworth Christian Church. Their attendants were Lois Kaufman Evans and Don Wickenhauser.

They are the parents of Wendy (Frank) Bartels, Heyworth; Brett (Marcia) Wickenhauser, The Colony, Texas; Terri (Howard) Springer, Bloomington; Troy (Kelley) Wickenhauser, Downs; and Tammy (Dave) Stephens, Heyworth. They have 10 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

He was self-employed in construction, retiring in 2000. She worked at Illinois State University, retiring in 2003





Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Obit of Matt Schade

Obit of Matt Schade: "

From Chatsworth Illinois Memories



CHATSWORTH — Matt Schade, 52, rural Chatsworth, passed away at 3:15 p.m. Tuesday (June 29, 2010) at OSF St. Joseph Medical Center, Bloomington, after an unwavering and courageous four-year battle with lung cancer.

His funeral will be at 11 a.m. Saturday at St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church, Chatsworth, with Jerry Gentes officiating. Cremation rites have been accorded, and private inurnment will be at a later date. Visitation will be from 10 to 11 a.m. Saturday. Memorials may be made to his children’s education fund. Martin Funeral Home, Chatsworth, is handling arrangements.

Matt was born April 1, 1958, in Fairbury, a son of Francis and Mary Jane Kueffner Schade. He graduated from Chatsworth High School in 1976 while attending Livingston Area Vocational School, where he received awards for his carpentry work. He married his loving wife, Rita Edwards, on Dec. 15, 1978, in Pontiac. She survives.

Also surviving are a daughter, Abby, and a son, Andrew, both at home; four sisters, Sue (Al) Barham, Boone, N.C.; Stacy McKinley, Joliet; Nancy (Dale) Stamm, Penfield; and Leah (Mark) Wagner, Paxton; one brother, Stephen Schade, Miami, Fla.; and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; one sister, Carol Vaughn; and his grandparents.

He worked at Interlake in Pontiac, where he was a welder and machine operator for 25 years.

He enjoyed gardening, hunting, fishing, camping, mechanical work, his tractors and spending time with family and friends. He was also involved with the Boy Scouts of America in Chatsworth. He was a member of St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Chatsworth.

He will be sadly missed and forever in our hearts.

This obituary may be viewed and private condolences sent to the family online at

Posted in Obituaries on Thursday, July 1, 2010 12:00 am


Dehm's Father's Day

Dehm's Father's Day: "



Fritz and his dad Lloyd "Bones" Dehm celebrate Father's Day at Piper City Rehab.



Lial & Sherri Zeedyd 25th Anniversary

Lial & Sherri Zeedyd 25th Anniversary: "


Lial and Sherri Zeedyk 25th annniversary



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Obit of Mary Ann (Rebholz) Davis

Obit of Mary Ann (Rebholz) Davis: "


From Chatsworth Illinois Memories



Mary Ann Davis

Mary Ann Davis, who was affectionately referred to as Nan by everyone, made her way home Saturday (June 26, 2010), at the age of 82. She was born May 9, 1928, to Joseph and Mary Margaret Ortman Rebholz. She spent her younger years in the town of Chatsworth. Mary Ann married William Haberkorn, with whom she had three daughters, Kathleen and Thomas Sumrall, Sharon and Mark Lundahl and Sandra Mill, all of Bourbonnais. She later married Arthur Davis. She is also survived by two brothers and one sister-inlaw, Robert and Teresa Rebholz of Bourbonnais, and William Rebholz of Chatsworth. Mary Ann worked at Illinois Bell Telephone Company as a telephone operator for 19 years, retiring in 1986. She then worked as a teller at the Illinois Bell Credit Union, retiring in 2004. She was a member of the Illinois Bell Pioneers and volunteered with that organization. Mary Ann was much loved by her grandchildren, Jennifer Lundahl, Christina Mill-Whitmer and Sharyn Whitmer, Matthew and Deanna Mill, Joe Sumrall and Caroline Sloarski and Christopher Sumrall. She cherished her greatgrandchildren, Jaeleigh Fritz, Skylar and Kennedi Seng, Devin Neal and Dylan Mill. She was also a great-greatgrandmother to Neviah Neal. She was preceded in death by her parents; her first husband, William Haberkorn; and her second husband, Arthur Davis. Visitation will be from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Clancy-Gernon Funeral Home in Bourbonnais, where funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday. The Rev. Richard Pighini will officiate. Interment will be in Maternity BVM Cemetery, Bourbonnais. Memorials may be made to “All God’s Children Need Shoes” through Illinois Bell Pioneers.


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Dassow Family Farm Story

Dassow Family Farm Story: "


From Chatsworth Illinois Memories




Dassows sustain family

farm with stewardship




Sara Schickel


Duane Dassow and his wife Connie show special concern, as farmers,

for the land they steward. Duane said, “I try to be sustainable—as much

as possible. We use cover crops.” He explained the process. “After you

harvest the crop, you plant another crop over the winter. It replenishes

the nutrients in the soil.” In addition to building four or five wetlands

over the years, the Dassows planted 40 acres of trees and restored an

additional wetland. The Dassows farm in and around Chatsworth.

Duane Dassow of Chatsworth started farming in 1971. Over the past 39 years, Duane and his wife Connie have cared for the land

through their farming and work with wetlands. “I started farming with my dad,” he said. He continued, “I started in high school. I always

looked forward to planting and working with animals.” Duane grew up one mile south of Chatsworth.

He reported that some of the land has been in the family since 1865.

Duane said, “I try to be sustainable—as much as possible. We use cover crops.” He explained the process. “After you harvest the crop,

you plant another crop over the winter. It replenishes the nutrients in the soil.” Of the challenges of farming, Duane states,

“Trying to be profitable is the biggest one. And trying to decide whether the new technology is good for the land or not.”

Much of Dassow’s philosophy toward farming is based on the work of Aldo Leopold, who is considered to be the father of conservation.

Leopold’s book, “A Sand County Almanac,” is one of Duane’s favorites. Duane explained, “Land is anything in, on, or above the land. That’s what

I try to follow in being sustainable.” In addition to building four or five wetlands over the years, the Dassows planted 40 acres of trees

and restored an additional wetland. The Dassow farm has hosted various schoolgroups over the years,

including soil judging.

Duane occasionally speaks to the wildlife and outdoor classes at Prairie Central and shares his knowledge with the next

generation of caretakers of the land. The couple has a daughter, Michelle, who lives in Mansfield.

Their son, Joseph, lives

in Bloomington.

Their youngest son John recently graduated with a master’s degree in zoology from Southern Illinois University.

Since graduating about a month ago, John is helping his parents with the various farming duties. “I always enjoyed hunting,

fishing and being outdoors,” Duane said. He continued, “I’m a bird hunter. I’ve always been fascinated with birds.”

“He gave our son the bug,” added Connie of their son John’s interest in waterfowl.

The Dassow’s grandchildren enjoy their efforts as well. “They love the farm,” said Connie. “They spend a week at a time with us over

the summer; they like the animals and swimming in the pond.” “The same things our kids did,” she reminisced.

Duane added, “We try to get the grandkids introduced to the land ethic.” In the little spare time they

have, Duane and Connie enjoy going to antique shops and camping.


Harve and Sally Bargmann 50th Anniversary

Harve and Sally Bargmann 50th Anniversary: "



PONTIAC -- Harve and Sally Bargmann of Pontiac will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary with a family dinner this summer.

Bargmann and Sally Butcher were married June 24, 1960, at Fairbury Methodist Church, Fairbury. Their attendants were Gloria Cox Ebach and Bob Kyburz.

They are the parents of Linda (Art) Miller and Janet McArdell, both of Pontiac; and Susan (Kurt) Cleghorn, Grand Haven, Mich. They have five grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

They were the owners of Pontiac Floor Fashions, retiring in 2002


Monday, June 14, 2010

Obit of Marguerite (Derr) Nickrent

Obit of Marguerite (Derr) Nickrent: "


From Chatsworth Illinois Memories



Marguerite M. Nickrent

Roanoke-Marguerite M. Derr Nickrent, 90, of Chillicothe formerly of Roanoke passed away Saturday, Feb. 27, 2010 at Proctor Hospital in Peoria.

She was born on Feb. 23, 1920 in Chatsworth, IL a daughter of Theodore and Clara Haberkorn Derr. She married Raymond Nickrent on May 8, 1944 in Chatsworth. He passed away on Aug. 13, 1986.

Marguerite helped with school custodial work with her husband at Sowers Elementary. She was a housekeeper and a meter reader for water and sewer in Roanoke.

She was a member of St. Edward's Catholic Church in Chillicothe.

Survivors include two daughters, Judith Ann (Ray) McKinney of Imnaha, OR; Janice Lynn (Ramon) Smith of Chillicothe; three grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren, two brothers, James (Dorothea) Derr of Pekin and Paul (Mary) Derr of Coal City.

She was preceded in death by her parents, one brother and one sister.

There will be no visitation or services. Cremation will be accorded.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Arthritis Foundation, Lupus Foundation or Rescue 33 in Chillicothe.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.ruestmanharrisfuneralhome. com.

Knapp-Johnson-Harris Funeral Home in Roanoke is in charge of arrangements.

Roger, Suzanne Coventry 55th Anniversary

Roger, Suzanne Coventry 55th Anniversary: "

From Chatsworth Illinois Memories




55th for Roger, Suzanne Coventry

CHATSWORTH -- Roger W. and Suzanne Coventry, rural Chatsworth, will celebrate their 55th wedding anniversary with a family trip in July.

Coventry and Suzanne Livingston were married June 18, 1955, at the home of the bride's parents.

Their three daughters are of Kari (Dan) Smith of Blue Island; Martha (Dale) Graber of St. Paul, Minn.; and Elizabeth (Mark) Miller of Shorewood, Wis.

They have seven grandchildren.

They were both educators.



John,Teresa Franey 50th Anniversary

John,Teresa Franey 50th Anniversary: "

From Chatsworth Illinois Memories



50th for John, Teresa Franey

CHATSWORTH -- John and Teresa Franey, rural Chatsworth, will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary today with a luncheon.

Franey and Teresa Hahn were married June 11, 1960, at St. John's Catholic Church, Cullom. Their attendants were Joseph Van Antwerp and Rita Hahn Kinkade.

They are the parents of Patty (Lenny) Haberkorn, Chatsworth; Tom (Stephanie) Franey, Rantoul; Joni (Bob) Huisman, Chatsworth; Terri (Troy) Rieger, Forrest.

They have 11 grandchildren.

He is semi-retired from farming.

She was a registered nurse at Greenbrier Nursing Home, Piper City, retiring in 2003.



Obit of Richard Deany

Obit of Richard Deany: "



Richard A. Deany, 75, Hot Springs, AR

Funeral services for Richard A. Deany, 75, of Hot Springs, AR and formerly of Chebanse, IL will be at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, June 15, 2010 at Sts. Mary & Joseph Catholic Church in Chebanse, IL.  Friends may call from 4:00-8:00 p.m. on Monday, June 14, 2010 at Knapp Funeral Home in Clifton, IL.  Burial will be in the Sts. Mary and Joseph Cemetery in Chebanse, IL.

Mr. Deany was born on April 3, 1935 in Chatsworth, IL, the son of William J. and Kathryn M. Berlett Deany.  He married Myrna C. Downing on April 7, 1956 in Chebanse, IL.  She preceded him in death on September 3, 1992.  He then married the former Pam Stewart Bergman in Watseka, IL on September 8, 1993 and she survives in Hot Springs, AR. 

He is also survived by daughters, Terri (Dan) Stauffenberg of Manteno and  Chris (Mike) Brouillet of Jupiter, FL; and sons, David (Dr. Deidre) Deany of Clifton, IL and Rick (Karen) Deany of Chebanse, IL.  There are stepchildren, Jill (Ron) Wallace of Hot Springs, AR and Joe (Gina) Bergman of Bourbonnais, IL.  Also, thirteen grandchildren, Derek, Courtney and Sidney Stauffenberg, Sarah Brouillet, Philip Brouillet and Kayla Deany, Taylor Deany, Jason (Kathy) Deany, Matt Deany and Adam (Kristy) Deany, Dylan Birge, Hayley Birge and Jake Bergman.  In addition there are three great-grandchildren, Annabelle Deany, Elizabeth Deany and Bryce Deany.  A sister, Millie (Tom) Stevenson survives in Chebasne, IL.  In addition to his first wife , he was preceded in death by his parents; one brother, Robert Deany and four sisters, Marjorie Dubois, Arlene Wendling, Delores Deany and Wilma Milton.

Dick enjoyed reading, working crossword puzzles, boating, the outdoors, traveling and trucking throughout the U.S.  He was affectionately known as “Digger”.  He enjoyed being with family and friends.



Friday, June 4, 2010

Obit of Nicole "Coco" Craver

Obit of Nicole "Coco" Craver: "

From the Daily Leader

Nicole “Coco” Craver

CHATSWORTH – Nicole “Coco” L. Craver, 21, beloveddaughter, sister and aunt,of Chatsworth passed awaySunday, May 30, at OSF St.James – John W. AlbrechtMedical Center in Pontiac.

Visitation was held from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, June 3, at Martin Funeral Home in Chatsworth.

Cremation rites were accorded following visitation. Memorials may be made to the family of Nicole L. Craver.

Coco was born April 18, 1989 in Pontiac a daughter of David and Bonnie (Parrish) Craver. She attended Prairie Central Schools.

She is survived by her parents of Chatsworth; 4 sisters: Crystal (Patrick) Gilbert of Clifton; Jennifer (Justin) Russow of Buckeye, Ariz.; Sarah Beegle of St. Ann, Ill.; and Amber Craver of

Chatsworth; one brother: Samuel Funk of Chatsworth; and 4 nieces. She was preceded in death by her maternal grandfather, and paternal grandparents.

She enjoyed playing cards and listening to music and she


Obit of Sister Mary Anselm (Irene Monahan)

Obit of Sister Mary Anselm (Irene Monahan): "

From Chatsworth Illinois Memories

CHATSWORTH — Sister Mary Anselm, 89, Cleveland, Ohio, formerly of Chatsworth, passed away on May 19, 2010, at her convent in Cleveland.

A funeral Mass was on May 22 at the Shrine of the Conversion of St. Paul, Cleveland, and she was buried at Calvary Cemetery.

Sister Anselm was born Dorothy Irene Monahan on Oct. 8, 1920, in Charlotte Township, to Teresa Trunk Hubly Monahan and Edward A. Monahan.

She is survived by a number of nieces and nephews in Illinois, Ohio, Maryland and Washington.

Sister Anselm entered the convent in 1950, taking her final vows in 1955. She spent most of her religious life at The Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration Monastery in Cleveland. She was known and appreciated for her energetic work, carpentry skills and her devotion to prayer.

Posted in Obituaries on Friday, June 4, 2010 12:00 am


Monday, May 24, 2010

Obit of Sondra Newman

Obit of Sondra Newman: "

From Chatsworth Illinois Memories


 From the Champaign New Gazette

 Sondra was pastor at the Methodist Church for some time.

Sondra Newman

PAXTON – The Rev. Sondra S. Newman, 66, of Paxton died at 8:34 a.m. Saturday, May 15, 2010, in Geneva, N.Y.

A celebration of life will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, May 24, at Baier Family Funeral Services, 406 E. Pells St., Paxton with Rev. Terry L. Westerfield officiating.

There will also be Eastern Star Services conducted by Prospect Chapter No. 367 Order of the Eastern Star. Family interment will be held in Glen Cemetery, Paxton.

Rev. Newman was born July 10, 1943, in Danville, the daughter of Charles C. and Mildred L. Weger Newman.

She is survived by one brother, Charles (Marilyn) Newman of Jacksonville, Fla.; one sister, Nita Kae (Clifford) Trotter of Geneva, N.Y.; two nieces; two nephews; and other relatives and numerous friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents.

She attended grade school in Hume, graduated from Paxton Community High School in 1961 and received her teaching degree from Illinois State University in 1965 after which she taught briefly.

She attended and graduated with a master's in divinity degree from Garrett Theological Seminary at Northwestern University, Evanston, in 1968. She received her doctorate of ministry in 1990. She ministered at numerous communities throughout the state of Illinois during her 40 years of ministry. She was the first female to be ordained in the Methodist Church in the state of Illinois. She retired in 2008. She was a member of the United Methodist Church of Paxton, the United Methodist Women and Prospect Chapter No 367, OES at Paxton.

Her life was devoted to serving the Lord. Rev. Newman collected butterflies and crosses and enjoyed sharing her passion with others.

Memorials may be made to the First United Methodist Church of Paxton.


Friday, May 21, 2010

Obit of James Trunk

Obit of James Trunk: "

From Chatsworth Illinois Memories


Forrest — Jim Trunk, 79, Forrest, formerly of Chatsworth, passed away at 2:35 a.m. Wednesday (May 19, 2010) at his residence.

A Mass of Christian burial will be at 10 a.m. Saturday at Ss. Peter & Paul Catholic Church. Chatsworth, with the Rev. B.K. Tran and the Rev. Jerry Verdun officiating. Visitation will be from 3 to 7 p.m. Friday at Martin Funeral Home,  Chats-worth, where the rosary will be recited prior to the visitation at 2 p.m. Memorials may be made to Walter Clemens American Legion Post 613, OSF Hospice or to a charity of the donor’s choice. Interment will be at St. Patrick’s Cemetery, Chatsworth.

Jim was born Sept. 14, 1930, in Fairbury, a son of Frank and Marian Matern Trunk. He graduated from Chatsworth High School in 1948. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Korean War. He was married to Donna Manuel, and later married Joyce Koch Forney on April 1, 1976, in Fairfield. She survives.

Also surviving are one daughter, Kathy Carollo, Texas; one granddaughter, Kandi Simmons, Bloomington; one stepdaughter, Pam Harris, Pontiac; one stepson, Paul (Kim) Forney, Oswego; stepgrandchildren, Bryan (Kelly) Harris and Brianne (Jake Dronenberg) Harris, both of Pontiac; Mitch Forney, Chicago; and Chelsey (Dwayne Staniszewski) Forney and Luke Forney, both of Oswego; one stepgreat-grandson, Carter Dronenberg, Pontiac; two nephews, Jack (Bev) Grady, Bloomington, and Bill (Kathy) Endres, Chatsworth; and one niece: Janene (Denny) Lane, Bloomington.

He was preceded in death by his parents, one grandson and two sisters.

Jim graduated from Reisch Auction College in 1956 and became co-owner of Feller Livestock Auction Market in Cissna Park in 1958. He was also an instructor at Feller Auction College at Kankakee for several years starting in 1958.

In later years, he became co-owner of Eastern Illinois Machinery Auction in Forrest and also was a widely known auctioneer for 42 years, until retiring 1998.

He was a member of Ss. Peter & Paul Catholic Church and Walter Clemens American Legion Post 613, both in Chatsworth.

He spent the last several winters in Naples, Fla., and loved to fish and visit with his friends.

This obituary may be viewed, and private condolences sent to the family online at

Posted in Obituaries on Thursday, May 20, 2010 12:00 am  


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Obit of Claudia (Taylor) Kaiser

From Chatsworth Illinois Memories

Wife of Patrick Kaiser

HINSDALE — Claudia Anne Kaiser, 56, Hinsdale, passed away May 4, 2010, at her residence.

A private Mass of Christian burial was on May 8 at SS. Peter & Paul Catholic Church, Chatsworth. A private inurnment was at St. Patrick’s Cemetery, Chatsworth.

Memorials may be made to Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Attn: Donor Services P.O. Box 650309 Dallas, TX 75265-0309. Martin Funeral Home, Chatsworth, has been entrusted with arrangements.

Claudia was born Sept. 12, 1953, in Pontiac, daughter of Howard and Blanche Strayer Taylor. She grew up on the family farm in Cullom, and married Patrick Kaiser on Aug. 30, 1975, at SS. Peter & Paul Catholic Church in Chatsworth. They spent the first 15 years of their marriage in New England, where three of their children were born before returning to the Chicago area in 1990.

She is survived by her husband, Patrick; three daughters, Elizabeth Kaiser, Philadelphia, Pa.; Margaret (Michael) Dorsey, Denver, Colo.; and Laura Kaiser, Hinsdale; one son, Michael Kaiser, Hinsdale; two brothers, Wayne (Lynn) Taylor, Pontiac, and Tim (Mary Jane) Taylor, Cullom; one sister, Sue (Steve) Moore, Bedford, Va.; and 17 nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents.

She graduated from Dominican University and was devoted to spending time with her family, decorating, fashion, gardening, art, cooking and traveling. She was very involved in all her children’s activities and supported them and her husband’s sales efforts. She valued her family above everything else and was a very loving wife and caring mother.

This obituary may viewed, and private condolences sent to the family of Claudia Anne Kaiser at

Posted in Obituaries on Tuesday, May 18, 2010 12:00 am

Obit of R. Bruce Holcomb

Obit of R. Bruce Holcomb: "

From Chatsworth Illinois Memories



Husband of Jean Johnson

BLOOMINGTON — R. Bruce Holcomb passed away Monday (May 17, 2010).

A graveside service will be at 2 p.m. Wednesday at Park Hill Cemetery, Bloomington.

He was born in St. Louis, Mo., on May 1, 1931, grew up in Chicago, and was proud to call Bloomington his home for more than 50 years.

He is survived by his wife, Jean, and two sons, Larry, a colonel in the Marine Corps, and John, a nurse just out of the Public Health Service. Also surviving are one brother-in-law, Joe Johnson, Barefoot Bay, Fla., and a cousin, Mary Alverson, Normal.

Bruce attended Colorado A&M and graduated from Illinois State University. During his 33-year career in education, he taught in Bloomington School District 87, served as assistant principal of Bloomington Junior High, principal of Lincoln School, principal of Irving School, and was elected for three terms as Regional Superintendent of Schools for McLean and DeWitt Counties. He was active in many professional education organizations.

He served his country during the Korean War and an American flag would always be seen flying from his residence and motor home.

Traveling, friends and family were his passion. He and Jean had many unique and memorable times in their 57 years of marriage.

Beck Memorial Home, Bloomington, is in charge of arrangements.

Online condolences may be sent to

Posted in Obituaries on Tuesday, May 18, 2010 12:00 am


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Rudy Lucek Obit

Rudy Lucek Obit: "


From Chatsworth Illinois Memories



Email from Bob Saathoff

(Died January 11, 2010)


Rudolph Herman Lucek, 63 passed away Monday Jan., 11, 2010 at his home in Clementson, Mn. He was born to Rudolph and Dorothy “Lucy” Lucek on September 3, 1946 in Fairbury, Ill. After graduation he joined the U.S. Air Force and moved to the Baudette area in 1966, where he met and married his wife of 43 years. He spent nearly all of his adult life working for the resorts in the area as a fishing guide. He is survived by his wife Ethel (Morrison) Lucek and his children Tony (Susan) Lucek of International Falls, Mn, Pat (Leah) Lucek of International Falls, Mn, Sara Lucek of Clementson, Mn, Susan (Allan) Olson Bemidji, Mn, and William (Deb) Lucek of Baudette, MN. He is also survived by his siblings Ron (Dorothy) Lucek, Rory Lucek, Randy (Cindy) Lucek, Connie Norstebon, step-siblings Joan, Pat, Doreen, Dan, Gary, Diana. He is also survived by 15 grandchildren Brett, Adam, Kara, Shawna, Ben, Alexandra, Arryn, Makaylah, Angela, Michael, Nikolai, Abigail, Marcus, Alivia, and Jayce. Numerous nieces and nephews and his friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, Rudolph and Lucy, infant son, and step-father Earl Dahlgren. Rudy enjoyed working on many various projects around the house, reloading and discussing guns, hunting, fishing, and gardening. He was also an avid card player and enjoyed puzzles, enjoying his grandchildren and reading.

Memorial services will be held on Saturday, January 16th at 10 AM at Clementson Lutheran Church in rural Baudette. Interment will be at the Riverdale-Border Cemetery in the Spring. Military rites by the Baudette Veterans Ceremonial Squad.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Donald Bunting Obit

Donald Bunting Obit: "




Husband of Vera Elizabeth Kemnetz


GIBSON CITY — Donald A. Bunting, 68, of Gibson City died at 6:10 p.m. Friday (April 9, 2010) at the Gibson Area Hospital Annex in Gibson City.

His funeral will be at 10 a.m. Tuesday at Lamb Funeral Home in Gibson City, with the Rev. Kevin Boesen officiating. Burial will be in Drummer Township Cemetery in Gibson City, with military rites by the Lee Lowery American Legion Post 568.

Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Monday at the funeral home.

Mr. Bunting was born Jan. 7, 1942, in Paxton, a son of Alfred and Anna Mae Brucker Bunting. He married Vera Elizabeth Kemnetz on Nov. 19, 1977, in Chatsworth. She survives in Gibson City. Also surviving is a son, Zach (Ariel Denny) Bunting of Gibson City; a granddaughter, Bailey Bunting; and his two special dogs, Clem and Mercy.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

Don served in the National Guard for three years. He had worked at M & W Gear Co. and doing cement work for Adolph Schneider, then later was a full-time farmer. He was a member of the United Methodist Church in Gibson City, the Gibson City American Legion and the Elliott AMVETS.

He deeply enjoyed spending time with his new and only granddaughter, and reading the newspaper and farm magazines. Memorials may be made to the Gibson Area Hospital, Elliott Fire Department or to a charity of the donor’s choice.

Posted in Obituaries on Sunday, April 11, 2010 12:00 am


Friday, March 26, 2010

Norma (McNutt) Graveline

Norma (McNutt) Graveline: "



 From the Kankakee Daily Journal


Visitation for Norma Jeanne Graveline, 79, of Bourbonnais, will be from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday at the Bourbonnais Chapel of the Schreffler Funeral Homes. A funeral Mass will be celebrated at 9:30 a.m. Friday at Maternity BVM Catholic Church in Bourbonnais, where she was a member.

Burial will be in Maternity BVM Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Maternity BVM Catholic School. She passed away Monday (March 22, 2010) at Riverside Medical Center in Kankakee.

Mrs. Graveline was a rehab aide at Kankakee Terrace Nursing Home for 25 years, retiring in 1997. She was born Feb. 8, 1931, in Danforth Township, the daughter of Jesse and Teresa McNutt. Her husband, Ronald Graveline, whom she married Sept. 3, 1949, in St. Louis, Mo., is deceased. She graduated from Chatsworth High School. She enjoyed spending time with her family, especially her granddaughters.

Norma Jeanne is survived by her four children, Michael (Marsha) Graveline, Craig Graveline and Rhonda DePasquale, all of Bourbonnais, and Lynn (Jill) Graveline of Bradley; two granddaughters, Madeline and Emily DePasquale, both of Bourbonnais; one sister, Janice Goin of Orangeburg, S.C.; five sisters-in-law, Joan Siefert of Kankakee, Dolores (Alan) Friedewold of Columbia, Ky., Matilda Cashion of Whittier, Calif., Margaret Graveline of Michigan City, Ind., Maxine Graveline of Palm Bay, Fla.; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.

She was preceded in death by her parents and one son, Mark Graveline.


Sunday, March 21, 2010

Great Bank Robbery of 1910

Great Bank Robbery of 1910: "


From Chatsworth Illinois Memories



Story of the Month


New pages are being added from the files of The Chatsworth Plaindealer





Sunday, March 14, 2010

Cole Gerdes Lives His Dream

Cole Gerdes Lives His Dream: "



Cole Gerdes lives his LA dreams

Cole Gerdes
By Photo provided

Cole Gerdes



By Carol Winters

Pontiac Daily Leader

Sat Mar 13, 2010, 06:00 AM CST


Pontiac, Ill. -

“When people ask me what I do for a living, I say I don’t have enough time for this right now,” says Cole Gerdes, a 2005 PTHS graduate and son of Kathy and Bill Abry and Terry and Beth Gerdes. Gerdes means he literally does not have the time to explain all the jobs he has.
    By day, Gerdes, who lives in Hollywood, is a model, actor, event co-coordinator, or artist manager and promoter. By night, Gerdes is a bartender, valet, or works in a nightclub. His random night jobs allow him the opportunity to pursue his purposeful day jobs. “The non-glamorous night jobs give me my days free. As long as I can make enough to cover this week’s rent, I am happy,” he said.


Saturday, March 13, 2010

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Milton Irwin Obit

Milton Irwin Obit: "




Milford "Milt" C. Irwin
(April 27, 1912 - March 1, 2010)

Milford “Milt” C. Irwin, 97, a resident of Piper City Rehab and Living Center – Piper City formerly of Chatsworth passed away at 9:05AM Monday March 1, 2010 at the center.

Funeral services will be 10:30AM Thursday March 4, 2010 at Chatsworth United Methodist Church – Chatsworth with Rev. R. David Reynolds officiating. Visitation will be 9:00AM to 10:30AM prior to services at the church, where memorials may be made to the Chatsworth United Methodist Church or Piper City Rehab & Living Center. Interment will be at Cropsey Cemetery – rural Cropsey. Martin Funeral Home – Chatsworth has been entrusted with arrangements.

Milt was born April 27, 1912 in rural Cropsey a son of Will and Hazel (Westerbelt) Irwin. He graduated class of 1931 from Cropsey High School where he enjoyed playing basketball, and later married R. Beryl Thomas, December 25, 1937 in rural Cropsey in her parent’s home. She survives.

Also surviving are 6 children and spouses: Kay (Harold) Lindley of Morton, Bette Jane (Bruce) Otto of Minier, IL; Alan (Kathy) Irwin of Graham, N.C.; William (Diane) Irwin of Oregon, IL; Gary (Susan) Irwin of Galion, OH; and Colleen (James) Browning of Hudson, IL; 12 grandchildren, 15 great-grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, 2 brothers and 1 sister.

Milt farmed south of Chatsworth for many years until retiring in 1980.

Mr. Irwin was a member of the Chatsworth United Methodist Church. He had helped with construction of the church in 1980, was a former head usher and trustee. He was also a member of the IL Farm Bureau, and was a former director of the Livingston County Farm Bureau; and served on the Chatsworth School Board.

He loved his family, and especially enjoyed his grandkids. He was an avid Prairie Central Sports and Chicago Cubs fan.


Saturday, February 27, 2010

Chatsworth Grade School Wins Again !

Chatsworth Grade School Wins Again !: "




Chatsworth school among area honorees


By Phyllis Coulter | | Posted: Friday, February 26, 2010 7:46 pm |

CHATSWORTH — For the second year in a row, Chatsworth Grade School has received double honors for academic achievement as part of the state honor roll. Several other schools also were honored.

Chatsworth is part of Prairie Central School District, based in Fairbury. It is one of five schools in the state to earn both the Spotlight Schools and Academic Excellence awards.

Some 975 schools are listed on the 2009 Honor Roll, which is overseen by the Illinois State Board of Education and Northern Illinois University.

Chatsworth’s 145 pre-kindergarten to fourth- grade students have a poverty rate of about 70 percent. Despite that, “we set our expectations high and students meet them,” said Principal Karen Hazelrigg.

In Downs, both Tri-Valley elementary and middle schools earned the Academic Excellence award. Superintendent Curt Simonson said the high school again has been cited among the top 25 high schools in Illinois and was nominated for the prestigious National Blue Ribbon Award.

The Illinois Honor Roll has three categories. “Spotlight Schools” have more than half of the students from low-income families and more than 70 percent met or exceeded standards in state tests. “Academic Excellence” schools have sustained high performance, with more than 90 percent meeting or exceeding state standards on standardized tests for more than three years. “Academic Improvement” schools showed at least a 7.5-point improvement in state test scores in both reading and mathematics between 2008 and 2009, or at least a 15-point improvement in state test scores in both reading and mathematics since 2007.

In Central Illinois, 35 schools were honored. They were:

Academic Improvement: Gridley Grade School; Deland-Weldon, Dwight, LeRoy and Tremont high schools.

Spotlight Schools: Bent, Irving and Sheridan elementary schools, Bloomington; Central School, Pontiac; Centennial, Kimes, and Oakland Park elementary schools, Streator; Emden Elementary; Northwest Elementary, Lincoln; Chatsworth Grade School.

Academic Excellence: Central Intermediate School, Washington; Chatsworth Grade School; Colene Hoose, Grove, Fox Creek, Northpoint, and Prairieland elementary schools, Unit 5 (Normal); Grundy, Lincoln, and Jefferson elementary schools, and Morton Junior High, Morton; Lexington elementary and high schools; Lincoln Elementary, Pontiac; Meadowbrook Elementary, Forrest; Olympia West Elementary, Minier; Stevenson Elementary, Bloomington District 87; Tremont elementary and middle school; Tri-Valley elementary and middle school, Downs.

On the Net:

Posted in Education, Local, News on Friday, February 26, 2010 7:46 pm


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Barrett's 50th Anniversary

Barrett's 50th Anniversary: "

Update from "Chatsworth Illinois Memories"



50th for Jerry, Carolyn Barrett

CHATSWORTH -- Jerry and Carolyn Barrett of Chatsworth will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary with a party given by friends in Naples, Fla.

Barrett and Carolyn Blasingim were married Feb. 20, 1960, at Church of Christ, Guthrie.

Their attendants were Carolyn Welborn Rinkenberger and Sonny Bachman.

They are the parents of Duane Barrett, Harvest, Ala., and Melissa Berry, Bloomington.

They have four grandchildren.

He retired in 2000 as a truck driver after 35 years with Swing Transfer, Forrest; Nussbaum Trucking, Normal; and Pittsburgh Tube, Fairbury.

She is semi-retired as a licensed insurance agent, having worked for Shafer-Pearson Agency, Chatsworth; Ideal Insurance Agency, Lombard; and Snyder Insurance, Bloomington. 



Class of 1890 Commencement Program

Class of 1890 Commencement Program: "


Update from "Chatsworth Illinois Memories


Class of 1890 Commencement Program



Ninth Annual Commencement of the Chatsworth High School on Wednesday Eve., June 11, 1890

Class of '90

Clarence H. SMITH
Bessie M. LARNED

Motto: "Rowing, not drifting"
Class Flower: Syringa


Quartette-"Warm Spring Days"..McLaughlin
Mrs. H. M. BANGS, Miss Grace SEARS, Messers. H. M. BANGS and O. B. STRAIGHT

Invocation..Rev. J. W. MCGOWAN

Piano Solo-"Musette Di Nina"..Louis Strack

Salutatory,* and Oration - "What Shall We Do?"

Oration - "Light, More Light"
Bessie M. LARNED

Oration - "Spectacles"

Vocal Solo-"The Message"..Blumenthal
Mrs. H. M. BANGS

Oration - "Is the Study of Science Practical?"
Clarence H. SMITH

Oration - "Morning, Noon and Evening"

Oration - "Life Is a School", and Valedictory*

Male Quartette-"Sweet Home"..Heath

Presentation of Diplomas

Quartette-"Where Rippling Waters Flow"..White
Mrs. H. M. BANGS, Miss Grace SEARS, Messrs. H. M. BANGS and O. B. STRAIGHT

Benediction - Rev. W. D. H. YOUNG

*Elected by class






Sunday, February 21, 2010

Pantagraph Article on Ted Takasaki

Pantagraph Article on Ted Takasaki: "

Update from "Chatsworth Illinois Memories"



By Scott Richardson | Sunday, February 21, 2010 - 7:00 am

It’s funny how events we expect to be routine can turn out to change our lives.

That was true about a fishing trip I took in March 1992. I was looking for stories for Hook, Line & Sinker, the fishing column that appears on Thursdays in the sports section.

I phoned Bob “Kaz” Kaczkowski and his wife, Bev, who ran the Masters Walleye Circuit, which begins its season every year with a March event at Spring Valley on the Illinois River. I asked them to hook me up with a MWC angler, preferably one from Illinois, who could take me fishing on the river for a story.

I remember Kaz said, “I know just the guy.”

The guy turned out to be Ted Takasaki, a native of Chatsworth in Livingston County. He became one of my best friends. We’ve written articles together for some of the largest fishing magazines in North America for the past 18 years. That’s why I was ecstatic when he phoned recently to say he’d been voted as a “legendary angler” into the Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame in Hayward, Wis. Just 121 anglers have reached that pinnacle since the Hall was founded in the early 1980s.

When we met, Ted was just 34, a computer systems salesman with Hewlett Packard based in Chicago. His fishing partner was John Campbell, who also worked for Hewlett Packard. They’d fished together since they met at the University of Illinois. They’d decided to enter the MWC event on a lark a few years earlier when they saw a booth about it at a sports show.

The Takasaki/Campbell team reigned as the 1991 MWC Team of the Year when we first shook hands at the dock at Barto’s Landing in Spring Valley.

One year Ted won Top Gun honors for being the most consistent angler in the Professional Walleye Tour. Another year, he won the PWT championship. He set a one-day record for the PWT on Lake Erie with five fish over 50 pounds. More recently, he’s among the top competitors on the FLW Walleye Tour.

He’s a familiar face on many top fishing shows on television. He left the computer business and was president of Lindy Legendary Fishing Tackle until this year after the company was sold.

You might not expect someone born in downstate Illinois to become one of the most famous walleye fishermen in America, a member of the Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame with people like Al and Ron Lindner, Spence Petros and a small hand-picked group of others, including Bill Binkleman, Babe Winkelman and Bill Dance. Ted’s dad taught him to fish for bluegills and bass in farm ponds near Chatsworth.

Today, Ted is possibly the most versatile walleye fisherman in America.

His expert fishing knowledge, coupled with his ready smile and upbeat personality, make him an exemplary ambassador for the sport.

Legendary anglers are people who’ve made a lasting contribution to fishing.

I know he’s made a lasting contribution to my life. I’m proud to call him friend.

Learn more about the Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame at

Scott Richardson is Pantagraph outdoor editor. Contact him at (309) 820-3227 or e-mail Share stories and read past outdoor and fishing columns at