MURPHYSBORO -- Nancy Gillespie, 74, died Sunday, Jan. 23, 2005, at home. A memorial service followed by a reception will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 5, 2005, at First Presbyterian Church of Carbondale. In lieu of flowers donations be made to First Presbyterian music ministry at 310 S. University Ave., Carbondale or the Southern Illinois University School of Music.
CHESTER -- Ricarda Renee Mattingly, 53, of Matoon, formerly of Chester, died Monday, Jan. 31, 2005, in Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana. Services will be at 11 a.m. Friday at Schroeder-McClure Funeral Chapel in Chester, with the Rev. Phillip Keeton officiating. Burial will be in Evergreen Cemetery in Chester. Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday and from 7:30 to 11 a.m. Friday at the funeral home. Memorials may be made to the family.
SCHELLER -- Dominic E. 'Skeets' Betlejewski, 89, died at 7:15 p.m. Monday, Jan. 31, 2005, at home in Scheller. A Mass of Christian burial will be at 10 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 3, in St. Charles Church in Dubois, with Monsignor Melvin Vandeloo and Father Bert Iffert officiating. Burial will be in St. Barbara's Cemetery in Scheller, with graveside military honors conducted by American Legion Post 141 of Mount Vernon. Visitation will be from 4 to 8 today at Newell Funeral Home in Waltonville, with a rosary recitation at 7:30 p.m.Memorials may be made to VNA-TIP Hospice of Centralia or St. Barbara's Cemetery and will be accepted at the funeral home.
Samuel 'Rabbit' Gibbs
CARBONDALE -- Samuel H. 'Rabbit' Gibbs, 87, died at 11:05 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2005, in Carbondale Nursing and Rehab Center. Arrangements are incomplete at Jackson Funeral Home of Carbondale.
MARION -- Carolyn Maxey, 70, of Marion, died at 11:56 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2005, in Herrin Hospital. Arrangements are incomplete at Mitchell-Hughes Funeral Home.
GOREVILLE -- Virginia Stewart, 79, died at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2005, in Heartland Regional Medical Center in Marion. Arrangements are incomplete at Blue Funeral Home in Goreville.
Warren V. Hileman
JONESBORO -- Warren V. Hileman, 103, of Jonesboro died Sunday, Jan. 30, 2005, in the Illinois Veterans Home in Anna. He was born Sept. 29, 1901, in Anna, the son of Aaron and Alvenia (McIntire) Hileman. He married Mae Elizabeth Hileman on June 20, 1923, in Tuscola, and she preceded him in death on June 24, 1989. He worked in security at the Veterans Affairs Hospital in North Chicago. Mr. Hileman was a veteran of World War I, serving in the U. S. Army, and was a life member of the Carroll P. Foster Post 3455 Anna VFW. He attended Big Creek Baptist Church. Mr. Hileman had been a resident of the Illinois Veterans Home since 1995. While there, Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs director Roy L. Dolgos presented him with the World War I Victory Medal. He served with the American Expeditionary Force in Siberia from September 1919 to March 1920. Mr. Hileman was a member of B Co., 27th Infantry. While serving in Siberia, Mr. Hileman was involved in a hostile encounter at Posolskaya. His service in Russia entitled him to the World War I Victory Medal. A regimental history of the 27th Infantry available on the Internet recalled that the AEF was deployed to Siberia after the Russian government under the Bolsheviks signed a separate peace treaty with Germany in 1918. The treaty ended Russia's participation in World War I, dissolved the Eastern Front in Russia and released German troops to the Western Front in France. 'Because Russia had been an ally of the Western powers, including the United States, vast quantities of supplies had been shipped to Russian ports,' the Web site explained. 'The Allies were concerned the supplies would fall into the hands of warring Russian factions, who the Allies feared would turn the supplies over to the Germans. 'By that time, civil war had broken out in Russia. The major conflicts involved the Bolsheviks (Communists or Reds) and those loyal to the deposed czar (the Whites). 'In Siberia, the Trans-Siberian Railroad was the only east-west transportation link in the entire country. Whoever controlled the railroad would also control the movement of the supplies stockpiled in the Russian port of Vladivostok, located in eastern Siberia on the Sea of Japan,' the Web site article explained. The AEF, in which Mr. Hileman served, was sent to Siberia to protect the vital rail link and supplies. Along with American soldiers, British, Canadian, Czech, Chinese, Italian, French and Japanese troops also participated. The ceremony honoring Mr. Hileman began with presentation of the colors by an honor guard from the Veterans of Foreign Wars Carroll P. Foster Post 3455 of Anna. As Mr. Hileman was taken into the community room at the veterans home where the ceremony in his honor took place, he saluted the VFW honor guard. Members of the honor guard all saluted back. In reflecting on Mr. Hileman's service, IDVA director Dolgos noted that the AEF that was deployed to Siberia served in combat longer than any other American unit in World War I. Mr. Hileman and his fellow soldiers faced tough challenges in Siberia, particularly the bitterly cold winter. Meals often froze before they could be eaten. The World War I veteran told those who had gathered to honor him that he'd seen enough of snow while in Siberia. Mr. Hileman also commented about his longevity. 'I'm not old, I've just been here a long time,' he said. Mr. Hileman is survived by one daughter and son-in-law, Janet and Joseph Hardin of Anna; two grandchildren and their spouses, April and Charles Isaacson of Wildwood and Christopher and Anne Hardin of Granville, Ohio; two great-grandchildren, Benjamin and wife Colleen Isaacson and Aaron Isaacson; one great-great-granddaughter, Holley Isaacson; and one half-sister, Nina Davidson of Anna. Services will be at 11 a.m. Friday, Feb. 4, at Hileman Funeral Home, with the Revs. James Hardway and LaRue Parr officiating. Friends may call from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home. Interment will be in Anna Cemetery, with full military rites conducted by Carroll P. Foster Post 3455 Anna VFW.
Blanche M. Norris
ANNA -- Blanche M. Norris, 100, of Anna, formerly of Du Quoin, died at 7:42 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 30, 2005, in Union County Hospital in Anna. She was born Dec. 6, 1904, in Du Quoin, the daughter of Hardin Harrison and Eva Harriett Massey FurloW. She married John Walston Norris July 8, 1922, in Du Quoin; he preceded her in death March 19, 1980. She was a member of First Baptist Church in Anna. She worked at Marshall Browning Hospital in Du Quoin in the dietary department for many years. She is survived by seven children, John Richard and wife Janice Norris of St. Louis, Norma Jean Grogg also of St. Louis, Mary B. and husband Don Laughmiller of Mount Vernon, Doris E. and husband Worth Woolsey of St. Louis, M. Harrison and wife Kay Norris of Energy, Carol S. and husband Buck Kroeger of Anna and Robert 'Bob' and wife Pat Norris of Murphysboro; 15 grandchildren; 32 great-grandchildren; 18 great-great-grandchildren; nieces, nephews, other relatives and many friends. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, three brothers, three sisters and one grandson. Services for Mrs. Blanche M. Norris will be at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2005, at Lutz and Rendleman Funeral Home in Anna, with the Rev. Tim Sadler and John Casper officiating. Interment will be in Old Du Quoin Cemetery in Du Quoin. Friends may call from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday at the funeral home. Memorials may be made to Union County Hospital or First Baptist Church in Anna. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home.
BUNCOMBE -- Ernie Black, 79, died at 1:58 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 30, 2005, in Hillview Health Care Center in Vienna. Mr. Black was born June 3, 1925, in the Happy Hollow community in Johnson County. He was the son of Gertie Black. Ernie was united in marriage to Sybil L. (Crawford) on Nov. 21, 1956, in Goreville. She preceded him in death Feb. 9, 1959. He was later united in marriage to Juania (Stout) Royster June 29, 1968, in Buncombe and she survives. Other survivors include two daughters and sons-in-law, Kathy and Eddie Holt of Paducah, and Marie and John Hancock of Kankakee; a son and daughter-in-law, James and Phyllis Royster of Vienna; a daughter-in-law, Shari Royster of Kankakee; 13 grandchildren; several great- and great-great-grandchildren; and several cousin and many dear friends. In addition to his mother and first wife, Ernie was preceded in death by a son, Lewis L. Royster; two great-grandchildren; and two brothers, Roland Black and George Black. Ernie was a retired general laborer and pipeline construction worker. He later worked as a night watchman at Southern Illinois Materials, until his retirement in 2001. Ernie attended Mount Hebron Cumberland Presbyterian Church. He enjoyed gardening, helping others and was always willing to joke around with anyone. Services will be at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2005, at Bailey Funeral Home in Vienna, with the Rev. Gary DeRossett officiating. Burial will be in Mount Hebron Cemetery near Goreville. Friends may call after 4 p.m. today at Bailey Funeral Home in Vienna. Memorials are suggested to the Heather Harper Treat Memorial Cancer Fund, PO Box 98, Vienna, IL 62995.
MOUNDS -- Carl Cleary Sr., 85, of Mounds, died Friday, Jan. 28, 2005, in Union County Hospital in Anna. Services will be at 10 a.m. today in Massie Funeral Home in Mounds, with the Rev. Ronnie S. Mack officiating. Burial will be in Mound City National Cemetery, with military honors provided by Pulaski County VFW Post 8891. Visitation will be from 9 to 10 a.m. today at the funeral home.
Clarence See Smith
CARBONDALE -- Clarence See Smith, 97, of Chateau Girardeau, formerly of Carbondale, died at 7:40 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 29, 2005, in the Health Center in Chateau Girardeau. Services will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday in Crain Funeral Home Pleasant Grove Chapel, on Old Illinois 13 between Carbondale and Murphysboro, with pastors Brooks Wilson and Hal Greene officiating. Burial will follow in Pleasant Grove Memorial Park. Visitation will be from 5 to 9 p.m. today and until 11 a.m. Wednesday at the funeral home. Mr. Smith was born March 12, 1907, the ninth of 12 children of James A. and Rosabell Wright Smith in Bond County. He was the last survivor of all his siblings. Mr. Smith retired from the U. S. Postal Service in December 1965 with 31 years of service. Mr. Smith was very talented. He was a carpenter, furniture maker and writer. He was a member of the Carpenters' Union for 51 years. For many years he was the TBY Special Section of the Southeast Missourian. He spent his life helping others. He was a deacon and a Sunday school teacher at First Baptist Church of West Frankfort and a charter member of University Baptist Church in Carbondale. He was also a member of Cape Bible Chapel in Cape Girardeau. He married Maude E. Creek on July 28, 1929, in West Frankfort. They were married for 71 years before her death in 2000. Survivors include one daughter and son-in-law, Jo Ann and Raymond Flanigan of Murphysboro; one son and daughter-in-law, C. Alan and Annette Smith of Sun City Center, Fla. ; eight grandchildren, Jon Eric and Bradley Howard Lam, Brent David Patton, Susan Jo Parks, Scott Spencer Patton, and Mark Alan, Kevin Lee and Brian Warren Smith; and 21 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by one daughter, Marilyn Patton, and two sons-in-law, James R. Patton and Maurice Lam. Memorials are suggested to Southeast Hospice or Western Heights Christian Church Building Fund in Carbondale. Pe-paw gave all his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren a rich Christian heritage. He will be missed by all until we meet him again in Heaven.