William R. Keeffer
William R. Keeffer 1940—2016 William R. Keeffer, 76, of Stockton, Illinois passed away at his home on the evening of October 12, 2016. William was born January 23, 1940, in Freeport, IL to Chester and Mildred (Lyon) Keeffer. William grew up in Stockton, IL with his three sisters, Joan, Barbara, and Janice, and his two brothers, Ron and Tom, and graduated from Stockton High School in 1958. Following high school he attended the University of Illinois and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Education to be a science teacher, and later earned his Master's Degree in Science from Syracuse University in New York. He married his high school sweetheart and true love, Eileen (Willis) Keeffer on August 12, 1961. The couple celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary this summer surrounded by family. William was well known by many as "Whistling Bill," impacting the lives of those around him with his dedication as a teacher, devoting over 30 years of teaching, primarily at Stockton High School, his intricate carpentry skills in building and furnishing his own home and making gifts for others, his love for gardening and being outdoors, his focus and dedication to do any task on his own, his love for working on vehicles, and his never ending love and support for his family. In later years he worked for over ten years as the Building Inspector for Jo Daviess County. He enjoyed attending local sporting events, and was the announcer for the Stockton Blackhawk football team for many years. William was a life-long learner who loved to read and learn new things each and every day. He went to the Stockton library at least once a week, checking out books on a variety of topics, but he especially enjoyed historical books and autobiographies. He was a member of Holy Cross Catholic Church, in Stockton, IL, with a lifelong dedication to his faith, engaging in activities including being an altar server as a child, a lector as an adult, and volunteering his spare time to design and build cabinets, closet doors, and other projects for the church. Anyone who knew William knows that although he can be a man of few words, the words he used were always kind. He never said a bad word about anyone. He is survived by his loving wife, Eileen Keeffer; three children, Teresa (Jim) Blair of Stockton, Nancy (Joey) Hunziker of Ridott, Steve (Janelle) Keeffer of Galena; eight grandchildren, Rachael (Lonny) Nielsen of Lanark, Ben (Julia) Blair of Stockton, Tristan (Jessica) Gallagher of Loves Park, Cody (Michelle) Gallagher of Freeport, Bridgett and Gavin Hunziker of Ridott, Erin and Elyse Keeffer of Galena; and one great-grandchild, Anna Blair of Stockton. William loved spending time with his children and grandchildren, always making time to make each of them feel special by attending school and curricular events, helping with projects, and sharing his love of reading with those in his lives. He is preceded in death by his parents, Chet and Mildred Keeffer; in-laws, Lowell and Helen Willis; sister, Joan Bonvillian; and brother, Ron Keeffer. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, October 17, 2016, at Holy Cross Catholic Church in Stockton, IL. Visitation will be from 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday, October 16, 2016, at Leamon Funeral Home in Lena, IL. Father Mike Morrisey will officiate the services. Interment will be at Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens in Freeport, IL. A memorial has been established in his name for Holy Cross Catholic Church and the Stockton Public Library. Condolences may be sent to the family at www.leamonfh.com .
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