Category Archives: Community

Local resident earns doctorate

Lynda G. Gould, daughter of Eldon and Sandy Gould of Maple Park, graduated from the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree on May 17.

Dr. Gould graduated from Kaneland High School in 2001. She earned a bachelor’s degree in animal sciences from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2005. While at the College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Gould was a member of the Production Medicine Club, the Theriogenology Club, the American Association of Swine Veterinarians, and student representative to the University of Illinois Veterinary Medical Alumni Association.

50th anniversary celebration for Fr. Paddock

Fr. Richard Paddock, Pastor of St. Gall Church, Elburn, from 1987 to 2003, will celebrate the 50th anniversary of his priesthood on Sunday, June 7. There will be a mass of Thanksgiving at 11 a.m., followed by a public reception in the Church Hall from noon to 3 p.m. Everyone is invited to share in this celebration and open house reception. Courtesy Photo

St. Paul Lutheran hosts dodgeball tournament

St. Paul Lutheran Church and School in Aurora will host a dodgeball tournament and 5K/1K run the weekend of May 29-31.

The event will help raise money for the school’s technology and scholarship programs. The dodgeball tournament starts Friday at 4:30 p.m. and runs all weekend.

On Saturday, the 5K starts at 8:30 a.m. and the 1K starts at 9:30 a.m. There will also be a kid’s carnival on Saturday. For Dodgeball Team and 5K/1K fees and applications, along with more information, call (630) 896-3250.

Fox Valley Christian hosts Sweet Life Cafe Women’s Retreat

Fox Valley Christian Church, 40W150 Main St., Batavia, will host “Sweet Life Cafe,” a women’s retreat, on Saturday, May 30, from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

This retreat is designed to satisfy one’s cravings for God, friends and spiritual growth by learning to slow down and take time to savor it all. Sweet Life Cafe is relational and personal and will help women grow spiritually, live out what they’ve learned in practical ways and find joy being with and serving others.

Cost for this one-day retreat is $15 per person and includes a journal, devotional kit and many other items to take home. Ladies can bring their own sack lunch or register for a supplied lunch box ($8 extra).

For additional information and/or registration, contact the FVCC church office at (630) 208-8484.

Poet to have reading at Calvary Episcopal

Local poet Christopher Kuhl will read from her newly-published book, “Sightings—Visions of the Human Spirit,” on Friday, May 22, at Calvary Episcopal Church in Batavia.

The book explores the philosophy that while we each have an individual soul, there is a spirit that connects us all as human beings. While not espousing any specific religious doctrine, the book is about spirituality and what it means to be human.

“Sightings” follows Kuhl’s earlier book, “Blood and Bone, River and Stone: Memoirs of Lewis County,” a poetic reflection about her home county. She has also been published in numerous literary journals. Copies of both books will be available for purchase at the reading.

The poetry reading begins at 7:30 p.m. in Calvary’s Memorial Hall. The church is located at 222 S. Batavia Ave., on the corner of Route 31 and Main Street. Admission is free. For more information, call (630) 879-3378.

Church offers event to provide help

Join the Kaneville United Methodist Church, 46W764 Main St., for “Finding Security in an Insecure World,” on Saturday, May 30, from 5 to 7 p.m., for an evening of hope, help, and healing.

Light supper, music, prayer and information about area financial and employment resources will be provided. Agency representatives will also be available to talk one on one with people about their situations.

If you have questions or would like more information, call (630) 557-2353 or e-mail

SG residents takes part in Marmion art exhibit

“The Astronaut”
drawing by J.C. Nelson of St. Charles
Marmion Exhibit

Marmion Academy will host a student art exhibit opening with a reception on Thursday, May 14, from 7 to 9 p.m. The exhibit is open to the public and will be held in the Dr. Scholl’s Exhibit Mezzanine in the Academy at 1000 Butterfield Road, Aurora. Gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. through May 22.

The show will feature artwork in a variety of media including drawing, painting, watercolor, colored pencil, mixed media, Photoshop and Illustrator, selected from pieces done by the digital design and studio art classes. Featured artists include Alex Karas of Sugar Grove.

For more information on Marmion Academy visit

Bouzein completes degree

Lena Bouzein of Elburn, completed her Ashland University degree requirements in May 2009. She received a bachelor of arts degree with a major in business administration.

Ashland University is a private, comprehensive institution located in north central Ohio between Cleveland and Columbus.

SG resident earns honors at Marmion writing competition

Sugar Grove resident Brendan Bakala was among one of 18 Marmion Academy students who were selected to have their work published in the English department’s annual The Reverend Father Peter Enderlin OSB Writing Competition Literary Magazine.

All Marmion students were eligible to submit manuscripts to the competition in the categories of poetry, fiction and essay.

Bakala earned an honorable mention in the essay category, for a work titled “An Unbiased Observation of Capital Punishment.”

The competition is named for the late Father Peter Enderlin OSB who dedicated his life to the students of Marmion. In his sophomore honors English class he stressed writing above all.

To order a copy of the contest Literary Magazine, contact Dr. Alex George at (630) 897-6936, ext. 234.

Alice Penegar

Alice B. Pinegar 84, of Canton, Iowa, died at 4:45 a.m. Sunday May 10, 2009, at Trinity Pathway Hospice in Bettendorf, Iowa, where she was a resident for two days.

She was born on Dec. 5, 1924, in Wasco, Ill., to Carl E. and Clara (Magnuson) Swanson. She married Roy E. Pinegar on April 6, 1946, in Geneva, Ill. He preceded her in death on July 26, 2008.

Survivors include two daughters Sharyn (Dr. John) Baker of Moline, Ill., Sandra (Dan) Ihnes of Canton; one sister, Esther Shelton of Canton; four grandchildren, Douglas (Jennifer) Baker of Highland, Ill., Theodore (Melissa) Baker of Davenport, Iowa, Kristine (Fred) Kunchick of Bellingham, Wash., Nathan (Pamela) Ihnes of Canton; and four great-grandchildren, Azriel and Solea Kunchick, and Dillon and Aaron Baker.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband; two brothers, Hilding and Carl Swanson; three sisters, including her twin sister Ethel, Ruth Swanson, and Mildred Taber; two brothers-in-law, who also preceded her in death Jack Shelton and Leland Taber.

She attended grade school in Lily Lake, and graduated from Elburn High School in 1943. She was confirmed in Lily Lake Grace Lutheran Church in 1937.

She first worked in the defense factory in Geneva while she was waiting for the love of her life to return from WWII.

She moved to Canton one day after her marriage and lived there until the past few months, when she moved in with her daughter Sharyn.

While Alice lived in Canton she worked at Kamlager Gifts and Electric for 25 years. She was a member of the Grace Lutheran Church in Canton.

She was a kind and generous woman and loved her family, neighbors and friends.

She enjoyed sewing and gardening but loved her flowers the most. She also enjoyed going on walks with her husband.

Services will be held at 1:30 p.m. Friday at the Oaks-Hines Funeral Home in Canton. Visitation will be held from noon to 1:30 p.m. at the funeral home. Burial will be at White Chapel Memory gardens in Canton.

Memorials may be made to the Grace Lutheran Church, Graham Hospice or Trinity Hospice in Bettendorf, Iowa.

Online condolences are available at

Earl Clement Sr.

Earl Clement Sr., 83, of Elburn, passed away Tuesday, May 12, 2009, at Provena Mercy Center Hospital in Aurora.

He was born July 7, 1925, in Geneva, the son of Neil and Viola (Evarts) Clement.

Earl had worked for 50 years as an auto mechanic for many area businesses, including Lou’s Jeep in Geneva. Most recently, he had been employed by Napa Auto Parts in Elburn.

He grew up with a love for auto racing, and along with his lifelong friend Arnie Gardner, traveled around the country competing at various tracks with Arnie doing the driving and Earl working on the car. He also had a love for antique cars. His greatest enjoyment in life, however, was being with his family. He will be dearly missed.

He is survived by his three sons, Earl Jr. (Fran Clement) of Maple Park, Steve (Connie) of Elburn and Ron (Marla) of Geneva; six grandchildren, Matt, Brandon, Emily, Andy, Brian and Diana; and brother, Carl (Rae) Clement of Arkansas.

He was preceded in death by his parents; daughter-in-law, Donna; son, Larry; and his wife, Dorothy.

Funeral service will be held Friday, May 15, at 10 a.m. at the Malone Funeral Home, 324 E. State St. (Route 38), Geneva. Burial will follow at Oak Hill Cemetery in Geneva.

Visitation will be held Thursday, May 14, from 4 to 8 p .m. at the Malone Funeral Home, Geneva.

In lieu of flowers, memorials to the American Cancer Society, 143 First St., Batavia, Ill., 60510 would be appreciated.

For information, call (630) 232-8233.

Sugar Grove UMC invites public to dedication

The public is invited to the dedication of a new open-air steel pavilion at the future site of Sugar Grove United Methodist Church, 4S633 Harter Road, on Sunday, May 17, at noon. The site is part of the church’s 40-acre campus, located west of Route 47 and Waubonsee Community College.

The pavilion will be dedicated in memory of Cathy Brouch Kroe.

Everyone is also invited to a “planting party” on Saturday, May 16, at 10 a.m. The group will plant native flowers and grasses around the pavilion, in memory of Richard and Margaret Raymond, and at the church’s nearby three-acre native prairie.

For more information, call (630) 466-4501.

Church offers event to provide help

Join the Kaneville United Methodist Church, 46W764 Main St., for “Finding Security in an Insecure World,” on Saturday, May 30, from 5 to 7 p.m., for an evening of hope, help, and healing.

Light supper, music, prayer and information about area financial and employment resources will be provided. Agency representatives will also be available to talk one on one with people about their situations.

If you have questions or would like more information, call (630) 557-2353 or e-mail

Former Emma’s owner sentenced to 4 years

Michael Alvarez pleaded guilty to gambling charge
An Elgin man has been sent to prison for running Super Bowl gambling pools at taverns in Elburn and St. Charles owned by his wife.

Michael A. Alvarez Sr., 53, of the 39W block of Hogan Hill, Elgin, was sentenced Tuesday by Associate Judge James C. Hallock to four years in the Illinois Department of Corrections.

On March 17, 2009, Alvarez pleaded guilty to one count of keeping a gambling place, a Class 4 felony in this case because of a prior conviction on the same charge.

Between Sept. 1, 2006, and Feb. 28, 2007, Alvarez ran a Super Bowl pool at Emma’s Pub and Cantina in the 1100 block of Main Street, Elburn, and at Miguel’s on the Fox, in the 100 block of West Main Street, St. Charles. The pool had a total value of $60,000 at $600 per square. Alvarez also was running smaller pools at the taverns.

The sentence includes an extended term based on Alvarez’s prior state and federal convictions on gambling offenses and has served sentences in Illinois prisons and the federal penitentiary.

Illinois law dictates that Alvarez must serve at least 50 percent of the sentence. He had been free on $10,000 bond.

Assistant State’s Attorneys Greg Sams and Adam Katz prosecuted the case.

Country Covenant Mother’s Day Worship

Country Covenant Church and interim Pastor Paul Bischoff invite the public to a Mother’s Day worship service led by the Lonesome Theologians on Sunday, May 10.

Adult Sunday School begins at 9:30 a.m. Bring your Bibles and be ready for good study and discussion. Children’s Sunday School is held during the church service.

Wednesday evening study group continues with RockSolid at 7 p.m., a study of church beliefs and doctrines.

Tickets are now on sale for the Fay’s Barbeque dinner fundraiser on Saturday, May 16, from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Tickets are $12 in advance or $13 at the door. The money raised is used to send campers to summer camp.

Country Covenant Church is located at Route 47 and McDonald Road, Campton Hills. Call (847) 464-5381 or check

Calvary Episcopal hosts Mad Hatter’s Tea Party

Women are invited to the first annual Mad Hatter Tea Party on Saturday, May 9, at 3 p.m. at Calvary Episcopal Church.

The day will include refreshments served by the men of the parish, who will also provide entertainment. Prizes for the best hats in a variety of categories will also be part of the fun.

Proceeds from the event will help fund Calvary’s outreach to Mutual Ground, a local shelter for victims of sexual assault and domestic violence. A suggested donation of $10 per person for the event is requested, and advance reservations are required. A reservation form may be found at

Calvary is located at 222 S. Batavia Ave., at the corner of Route 31 and Main Street. Call (630) 879-3378.

Sugar Grove UMC invites public to dedication

The public is invited to the dedication of a new open-air steel pavilion at the future site of Sugar Grove United Methodist Church, 4S633 Harter Road, on Sunday, May 17, at noon. The site is part of the church’s 40-acre campus, located west of Route 47 and Waubonsee Community College.

The pavilion is to be dedicated in memory of Cathy Brouch Kroe.

Everyone is also invited to a “planting party” on Saturday, May 16, at 10 a.m. The group will plant native flowers and grasses around the pavilion, in memory of Richard and Margaret Raymond, and at the church’s nearby three-acre native prairie.

For more information, call (630) 466-4501.

Buck receives scholarship

Hope College student Jenna Buck of Elburn received the Joyce M. Morrison Voice Scholarship at the annual Honors Convocation on Thursday, April 23.

The award is presented annualy to the most promising freshman vocalist who has expressed an intention to pursue a career in classical voice, as determined by the chairperson of the voice division of the department of music.

Bruckner, Engstrom to wed

Susan Bruckner and Kevin Engstrom of Denver, Colo., are engaged to be married. The wedding ceremony will be June 19 at Blue Lake Ranch outside of Durango, Colo.

Susan’s parents are Kathleen and Palmer Tibbetts of Franklin, Wis., and Larry Bruckner of Durango, Colo. She is a 1995 graduate of Greendale High School in Greendale, Wis., and a 1999 graduate of Colorado State University. Susan received her Masters Degree in Community Counseling from Adams State College in 2008. She is a counselor and the owner of Elder Wellness, LLC in Denver.

Kevin’s parents are Ellen Engstrom of Elburn and Rodney Engstrom of DeKalb. He is a 1995 graduate of DeKalb High School and a 2000 graduate of the University of Wisconsin in Madison. Kevin received his Masters Degree in Education from Prescott College in 2007. He is a science teacher at PS1 Charter School in Denver.

June Elizabeth (Harris) Toft

June Elizabeth (Harris) Toft, 87, of Maple Park, passed from this life to eternal life in the early morning hours of Tuesday April 28, 2009. She was born in Chicago on May 3, 1921, to Thomas and Evelyn (Mathey) Harris.

June grew up on the south side of Chicago and attended local schools. Following school and during the war, June helped make hand grenades at a local factory.

June married Alex Einear Toft on Jan. 6, 1940, in Hinsdale, Ill., and made their home in Downers Grove. While Alex worked outside of the home, June worked to make their house a home and raised their daughter, Barbara. Later she worked for various factories but spent a majority of her working years at Marshall Fields in the drapery department.

June and Alex found a home on several acres in Maple Park in 1991. It was a perfect location for Alex to continue his passion for horses and for June to expand her gardening. Sadness came in 2000 when Alex passed away, and until recent days, June continued to make her home in Maple Park.

June had a heart for gardening and hands for knitting. Her garden was always full of delicious vegetables and gorgeous flowers, and she had a legacy of priceless handmade afghans made for her great nieces and nephews. In her younger years, she could be found dancing at local ballrooms, and later, June’s favorite pastimes included driving the tractor and mowing the lawn.

She is survived by one granddaughter, Heather (Don) Harner of Plainfield; two siblings, Jean Murphy of Mokena, Ill. and Robert Harris Jr. of Ill.; many nieces and nephews, including Beverly (Tom) Wakolbinger of St. Charles, Thomas (Barbara) Harris of Two Sisters, Ore., Alan (Miriam) Harris of Sunnyvale, Calif., Jackie (David) Rubin of Oxnard, Calif. and William (Diane) Boyd of Bolingbrook, Ill.; many grand-nieces and nephews, including Tiffany (Roberto) Ortiz of Bolingbrook, Ill., and several great-grand nieces and nephews; one special friend and companion, Wesley Landmeier, and a family of friends.

She now joins her parents, husband Alex, daughter Barbara, one brother, and three sisters, who preceded her in death.

Visitation was Monday, May 4, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. A funeral to celebrate her life was also May 4, with cremation following.

A memorial will be established in June’s name. Memorials checks may be made to the June Toft Memorial and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119. Tributes and memories may also be forwarded to the family at the same address or through her obituary at

John F. Krbec

John F. Krbec, 76, of Republic, entered eternal life Thursday afternoon, April 23, 2009, at Marquette General Hospital in the loving care of his family. He was born May 25, 1932, in Chicago, the son of Frank and Anna (Mann) Krbec.

John was raised in Northlake, Ill., and graduated from the Leyden Township School. He entered the U.S. Army in 1951, serving with the 5th Regiment Combat Team during the Korean Conflict.

Following his honorable discharge, he returned to Illinois, where on Nov. 29, 1959, he married the former Pamela M. Coan in Westchester. The couple spent their honeymoon deer hunting. John and Pam resided in Elburn for a time, raising their son, Scott.

For over 30 years, John was employed as a supervisor with Illinois Bell Telephone, retiring in 1989.

In the early ’50s, John began making trips to the Upper Peninsula, Mich., to deer hunt. He fell in love with the natural beauty and solitude of the region and, in 1990, John and Pam moved to Republic.

A talented watercolorist for more than 28 years, John found the beauty of the Upper Peninsula offered a wealth of inspiration for his creative talent. He exhibited frequently, was a member of the Lake Superior Art Association, and for many years, featured his work at Art on the Rocks. He was also a competitive archer, developing his skill while in service, and was an original member of the Chicago Bow Hunter’s Association. His other passion was antique tractors, and he was a member of the Northwoods Antique Tractor Club.

John is survived by his loving wife, Pam; son, Scott (Laura) Krbec of San Antonio, Texas; his grandchildren, Aidan, Mackenzie, and Brigid Krbec of San Antonio, Texas; two brothers, James (Jean) Krbec of Phoenix, Ariz. and Jerry (Bonnie) Krbec of Toledo, Ohio; several nephews, his canine springers, Abby and Wendy; feline companion, Keri; and old pals, Big Red, Red Baron, Snoopy and Little Orange Peel that were the core of his tractor passion. John was preceded in death by his parents.

The family received relatives and friends at the Fassbender Funeral Home on Sunday, April 26, at 3 p.m. A Service of Remembrance followed at 4 p.m. with Rev. William Payne, family friend and neighbor, officiating. Internment will be in a national cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the American Cancer Society or the Marquette County Humane Society, 84 Snowfield Road, Negaunee, MI 49866.

Condolences may be expressed online at

Michael Andrew Kovach

Michael Andrew Kovach, 39, of Elburn, passed away unexpectedly on Monday, April 27, 2009. He was a loving and dedicated husband, father, son, brother and friend to all. Words cannot express the love he had for his family.

Mike was a graduate of Waubonsee Community College and Illinois State University and owned his own business. He was an avid golfer and bowler, often competing in the nationals tournaments. He enjoyed spending time with his family and friends. Mike was a passionate conservative Republican and loved political debates. He loved doing home remodeling projects and looked forward to purchasing the new tools and equipment required.

He is survived by his wife, Katherine (Burton) Kovach; his children, Michael, Sarah, Emily and Aidan; his parents, Albert and Kathleen Kovach; his sister, Krysta December; his brother, David (Catherine) Kovach and their children, Alexander, Jarod and Levi; his grandparents, William and Helen Hergenroether and many aunts, uncles and cousins.

Mike was preceded in death by his grandparents, Albert and Julia Kovach.

A funeral mass was held Monday, May 4, 2009, at 10:30 a.m. at Holy Angels Church, Aurora. Msgr. Martin Heinz was the celebrant. Visitation was held Sunday, May 3, at the Healy Chapel, 332 W. Downer Place, Aurora, where a liturgical wake service was held at 6 p.m. Interment was at Sugar Grove Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the family for the children’s educational fund.

For more information, please call (630) 897 9291 or visit to sign the online guestbook.

Jack Lee Keeney

Jack Lee Keeney 75, of St. Charles, died Friday, May 1, 2009, at home with his loved ones at his side. He was born March 1, 1934, in Seattle, Wash., the son of Ronald and Marian (Foss) Keeney.

He proudly served in the United States Army.

Jack was the founder of Foremost Fastener Company in Addison, Ill. He was a member of Christ Community Church in St. Charles, where he and his beloved late wife, Jackie served.

Jack was a loving father, grandfather, great grandfather and will be deeply missed.

Jack is survived by his loving children, Kevin (Diane) Keeney of Grand Rapids, Minn., Kim (Jim) Fitzpatrick of Elburn and Sharon (Mike) Haas of Huntley; his precious grandchildren, Kristi (Doug) Hull, Jack Keeney, Sarah (Jim Ohman) Keeney and Luke Keeney, Chris and Sean Fitzpatrick, Erica, Anna, Samantha, and Caitlin Haas; and his first great-grandchild, Alyssa Olhman; his brothers, James Keeney of Sioux Falls, S.D. and Gerald Keeney of Portland, Ore., and his sisters, Jean Ann (Walter) Nicaise of Kennewick, Wash. and Karen (Richard) Pacialick of Buffalo, Minn.

In addition to his parents, Jack was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Jackie, on July 11, 2008, and his sister, Judith Keeney.

A visitation and service to celebrate his life were held Monday, May 4, at the funeral home.

Burial will be private.

Contributions in Jack’s memory may be made to Hesed House, 659 South River, Aurora, IL 60506
For more information, call (630)584-2000 or visit

Paul M. Einwich

Paul M. Einwich, 52, of Sycamore, passed away at his home in Montello, Wis., on April 30, 2009.

He now leaves his loving wife, Donna Einwich; six children, Ronald (Peggy) Hendry of Bloomingdale, Angela (Randal) Nelson of Kingston, Ill., Mitch (Kim) Hendry of Maple Park, Trish (Michael Sciabaras) Hendry of Maple Park, Jenni (James Jordan) Einwich of North Aurora, Jason Einwich of Montello, Wis.; nine grandchildren; four siblings, Jayne (Michael) Jordan of Elburn, Peter (Terry Ingold) Einwich of Cortland, Julia (Mark) Stanhibel of Rodando Beach, Calif., and Victoria (Joe) Monks of Chandler, Ariz.; his mother, Lorraine Einwich of Elgin; many nieces, nephews, and his best friend, Jerry “Bo” Bowgren.

He now joins his father, George; and grandmother, Margaret Martin, who preceded him in death.

Visitation was held on Sunday, May 3, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. A mass to celebrate his life was held Monday, May 4, at S.S. Peter and Paul Catholic Church, Virgil.

There was a visitation from 10 a.m. until the time of service at 11 a.m. Fr. Perfecto Vasquez, pastor of the church, officiated and interment followed at Lily Lake Cemetery. For those unable to attend the service, a video of the service will also be available in on-demand form at no charge on the website.

A memorial has been established in his name to benefit S.S. Peter and Paul Catholic Church. Checks may be made to the “Paul Einwich Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119. Tributes and memories may also be forwarded to the family at the same address or through For a full length life story obituary, please go to

C. Darwin Cooper

C. Darwin Cooper, 80, of Campton Township, passed away at his home, surrounded by the love of his family, Saturday, May 16, 2009.

He was born in Belvidere, Ill., on July 20, 1928. Darwin attended public schools until his junior year of high school. He then attended and graduated from a private school, Wheaton College Academy. During his elementary and secondary school years, he excelled in basketball, cornet in the high school band, and studied piano.

He developed his piano skills throughout his lifetime, and it was a source of many hours of enjoyment. Classical music played a very significant part of Darwin’s life that evolved into his love for symphonic music, opera and recitals. At retirement, he learned how to play a pipe organ and installed a full-size, three-rank pipe organ in his basement.

He graduated from Wheaton College, Wheaton, Ill., in 1950 and majored in education. During his college years, he was proficient in basketball and baseball.

He was united in marriage to Pauline Blomberg on Sept. 12, 1951.

Upon graduation, he taught junior high and high school for six years in Illinois and Iowa. In addition to teaching several classes, Darwin became principal during his third year at a school in Savanna, Ill. He also had unique experiences in a small consolidated school in Iowa, grades 1-12, where he taught history, English, coached boys basketball and baseball. He also coached girls basketball, which was very popular in Iowa at that time. Never one to sit idle, he also directed the high school band and taught private piano lessons.

After six years of teaching, Darwin turned to the business world for employment. He worked 10 years for Automatic Electric Company, part of GTE, in Northlake, Ill. There he served as manager for the Customer Order Processing Department. Later, he began working with National Starch and Chemical Company, where he worked for 24 years until his retirement in January of 1991. His position at National Starch was very challenging as well as rewarding and involved managing 10 customer service and sales offices in the Midwest and the West Coast.

Darwin was a lifelong practicing committed Christian. He was a member of Grace Lutheran Church in Lily Lake for 40 years, where he served in many leadership roles, including church council, finance and adult education. He also sang tenor in the choir.

Darwin was a person with many passions and achievements. One unusual accomplishment was that he built his own family home. He did 90 percent of the work himself during nine months in 1964, all while working full time at a challenging job.

At the early age of 11 he developed a life long passion for railroading, and took many photographs and collected a large amount of railroad materials and publications, especially during the age of steam. He researched railroad history and published the findings in six railroad historical society magazines.

The study of history was always a passion, especially American history and specifically Abraham Lincoln. His library consisted of volumes of books and included the most ever written about Lincoln in the past 50 years.

Darwin considered the last 15 years of his life to be the most rewarding of all. It was during this time that he was awakened to the fact that his faith demanded concern for the disadvantaged persons in our world and to advocate for them in the public policy arena. This resulted in many editorials in the papers and visits to his legislators. He was particularly proud of his involvement in the establishment of Lutheran Advocacy, which is an attempt to awaken Lutherans in their responsibilities to put their faith in action and to advocate for public policies to aid the disadvantaged.

Above all else, his family will miss him as a loving husband and father and the integral part he played in his loving close knit family.

He now leaves his loving wife of 57 years, Pauline Cooper; three children, David Cooper and his wife, Eileen Conway of Fairfax, Va., Phillip Cooper and his life partner, Susan Urban of St. Charles, and Jonathan Cooper and his wife, Kris Cooper, of St. Charles; five grandchildren, Erin, Rhiannon, Jeremy, David and Sarah; one sister Iona Sunden of Coloma, Wis., nieces, nephews and a family of friends.

He now joins his parents, Clarence and Mildred (Fonken) Cooper, who preceded him in death.

Visitation was Tuesday, May 19, at Grace Lutheran Church, Lily Lake. A memorial service was held following visitation. Rev. Ernst Rex, pastor of the church, officiated. Private family interment was held following cremation.

For those who were unable to attend the service, a video of the service is available at For more information, please call Conley Funeral Home at (630) 365-6414.

A memorial has been established in his name. Checks may be made to the Darwin Cooper Memorial and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119. Tributes and memories may also be forwarded to the family through

Cooper West Stombres

Andrew and Danielle Stombres of Elburn announce the birth of their son, Cooper West, who was born April 8, 2009, at Delnor-Community Hospital in Geneva. He weighed 7 pounds, 3 ounces, and was 18.5 inches long.

The proud grandparents are Glenn and Teresa Orman of Elburn, John Stombres of Elburn and Berri Kellogg of Oswego.

Cooper is welcomed by big sisters Isabelle, 3, and Claire, 2.

Kasiwong, Walsh to wed

Mr. and Mrs. Pracha Kasiwong of Phattalung, Thailand, announce the engagement of their daughter, Khakhanang “Fern” Kasiwong, to Matthew Walsh, son of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Walsh of Lindenwood, Ill. Fern is a 2006 graduate of Assumption University in Thailand. Matt is a 2002 graduate of N.I.U. The couple is planning a June 6 wedding.

Ethan Ryan Walter

Ryan and Kristina (Rhoades) Walter of Sugar Grove announce the birth of their son, Ethan Ryan, who was born April 8, 2009, at Delnor-Community Hospital in Geneva. He weighed 7 pounds, 6 ounces and was 19 1/2 inches long.

The proud grandparents are Jim and Sharon Rhoades of DeKalb, Rich and Merrily Walter of Woodstock and Joanne Walter of DeKalb.

Ethan is welcomed by big brother, Andrew, age 3.

Egger earns scholarship

Dylan S. Egger received an Air Force ROTC (Reserve Officer Training Corps) college scholarship offer to attend a selected host college or university.

The cadet was selected to receive the scholarship certificate on the basis of comprehensive tests, high school scholastic achievement and extra-curricular activities. The majority of Air Force ROTC scholarships cover full college/university tuition, provide textbook allowance and pay most laboratory or incidental fees. In addition, at least a $300 tax-free monthly allowance is paid to recipients during the academic year. The estimated value of the scholarship depends on the student’s choice of school and type of scholarship offered.

Upon graduation from college and completion of the ROTC program, the cadet will receive a bachelor’s degree and a commission of 2nd Lt. in the Air Force.

Egger is a student at St. Charles East High School. He is the son of Scott D. Egger of Maple Park and Allison M. Egger of St. Charles.