Earl Eldon Hess, son of the late James M. and Viola (Moore) Hess, was born on April 23, 1932 in Belvidere, Illinois, and passed away June 3, 2008 in Cox Medical Center South in Springfield, Missouri, following a courageous battle with cancer. He was 76 years, one month and 11 days of age.
Earl grew up and attended school in Belvidere and was united in marriage to Donna Jean Grimes. They were married for 35 years. Donna passed away in 1990.
He later married Marlene (Larson) Obermiller on March 6, 1992. Following his retirement from Cam-Car Textron in Belvidere in 1994, they moved to Cabool, Missouri, in Texas County. Together they enjoyed farm life and gardening.
Earl’s favorite hobby was restoring antique farm machinery and he especially took great pride in his tractors. He was a member of Ozark Older Iron Club in Cabool where he enjoyed showing different projects until his health started failing.
At the time of his passing, he was a member of First United Methodist Church in Cabool. He served as a trustee for many years and helped with several church projects. Earl was a true example of a humble Christian gentleman. He had a quiet manner and great sense of humor that will be truly missed by those who knew and loved him.
He is survived by his loving wife of 16 years, Marlene Hess of their home; three daughters, Ann Barrich and husband Rudy of Sparta, Tennessee, Jane Hess and companion Mary Jo of Edgewood, New Mexico, and Merri Morrall and husband Mark of Caledonia, Illinois; one stepson, Randy Obermiller and companion Jeanelle Correll of Rockford, Illinois; three stepdaughters, Lynnel Camling of Oregon, Illinois, Ellen Wendel and husband James of Rockford, Illinois, and Kari Schelling and husband Joe of Seward, Illinois; three sisters, Sally Heisler and Mildred Blee, both of Belvidere, Illinois, and Dorthy Grimes and husband Donald of Phoenix, Arizona; five grandchildren; three stepgrandchildren; ten great-grandchildren; and a host of other relatives and friends.
Funeral services were held Friday, June 6, 2008, at 10:00 a.m. in First United Methodist Church, Cabool, with Rev. Art Ellsworth officiating. Joy Lower served as pianist. Song selections were “How Great Thou Art” and “I Shall Behold Him.” Pallbearers were Gary Maggard, Larry Baker, Dave Clark, Hank Grosenbacher, Jim Pearson and Roger Holms. Wayne Hart served as honorary pallbearer. Arrangements were under the direction of Craig-Hurtt Funeral Home, Mtn. Grove, Missouri.
Services and burial were held Saturday, June 7, 2008, in Belvidere, Illinois, under the direction of Buck-Wheeler-Hyland Funeral Home, Belvidere.