C. Ray Hornbaker
C. Ray Hornbaker BUSHNELL - C. Ray Hornbaker, 99, formerly of Bushnell, died on Tuesday, October 11, 2016, at Bethesda Meadow in Ellisville, MO. Ray was born March 7, 1917, in Crookston, MN, the son of Clarence Willard Hornbaker and Ethel (Pensinger) Hornbaker. He married Nancy E. Gillham on May 31, 1942, in Wichita, KS. She died in Florida in 2003. Ray was one of seven siblings, and when he was in his late teens, his family moved from Minnesota to Blandinsville, IL, where they farmed, and where his father started a farm implement dealership that became known as Hornbaker and Sons. There, Ray met Nancy, who was a teacher in the Blandinsville High School. During World War II, Ray and Nancy lived in Wichita, where they worked for Cessna Aircraft, and where their twin daughters, Caryl and Cathy were born. After the war, they moved back to Blandinsville, where Ray was in the implement business with his father and brother, and where their other two children, Richard and Laurel, were born. Several years later, Hornbaker and Sons purchased another implement business in Bushnell, IL, and Ray and his family eventually moved to Bushnell to run that business. In the early 1960s, Ray sold the Bushnell business and became a farm loan officer at Farmers and Merchants State Bank in Bushnell, where he worked for 20 years until he retired around 1982. After retiring, Ray and Nancy moved to St. Petersburg, where they lived happily in the Florida warmth. Ray lived the last few years in the nursing home in Missouri where he died. During his time in the Blandinsville/Bushnell area, Ray enjoyed golfing and fishing, and was an avid Bridge player, having come from a Hornbaker family that pulls out a deck of cards whenever they get together. He was active in the Bushnell Rotary Club and served a term as a city alderman. Ray was also a long suffering Cub fan. He apparently concluded that it was safe for him to move on, confident that, finally, this was the year for the Cubs to go all the way. He is survived by his four children, Caryl (Stewart) Harris of Clermont, FL, Cathy Weber of St. Petersburg, FL, Richard Hornbaker of Princeton, IL, and Laurel Schoen of Ballwin, MO; nine grandchildren; thirteen great-grandchildren; one brother, Marvin Hornbaker of Blandinsville; two sisters, Ruth Harper of Good Hope, IL, and Marian Hendrickson of Colchester, IL, and Arlington, TX; and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife, Nancy; three sisters, Beulah (Clay) Hobbs, Mildred (George) Hobbs and Leah (James) Breckon; and one daughter-in-law, Kathy (Richard) Hornbaker. A memorial service will be held on Sunday, November 6, at 1 p.m. at The Barn at Hornbaker Gardens in Princeton, IL. Memorials may be directed to the Bushnell Public Library.
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