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DAHLGREN – Kenneth Eugene Karcher, 84, passed away Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at his home in Dahlgren, Illinois.

He was born in Dahlgren, IL on February 25, 1937 to Frank and Evelyn (Stich) Karcher. Kenneth was a United States Navy Veteran having served his country in the Korean War. After serving his country Kenneth worked as a lineman for Charter Communications until his retirement and was devoted member of St. John Nepomucene Catholic Church in Dahlgren and a member of American Legion Post 106 in McLeansboro. An active outdoorsman, Kenneth enjoyed hunting and fishing with his lifelong friend Clem Aydt and he loved spending time with his friends and family, especially his great grandson Rayne.
 
Kenneth is survived by his wife Ruth Karcher of Dahlgren, IL; son Gregory Karcher of Mt. Vernon, IL; daughter Shari Karcher of Dahlgren, IL; three grandchildren: Jesse and Noah Karcher and Jeremy and wife Keesha Smith; one great grandchild Rayne Smith. Several nieces, nephews, cousins and friends also survive.
 
He was preceded in death by his parents, son Edward Karcher and two infant children; brothers Frank “Hank” Karcher and Donald Karcher; and sister Marilyn Davis.
 
Funeral services will be held Friday, March 5, 2021 at 10:30 a.m. at the Chapel of St. John Nepomucene Catholic Church in Dahlgren with Fr. Slawomir Ptak conducting the funeral mass. Visitation will be held Friday, March 5 from 9 a.m. until the time of service at the St. John Nepomucene Catholic Church with a Rosary Service at 10 a.m. He will be laid to rest at St. John Nepomucene Catholic Cemetery in Dahlgren with Graveside Military Honors performed by McLeansboro American Legion Post 106 and a U.S. Navy Honors Team. Per CDC and state guidelines masks are required and social distancing will be observed. Memorial donations may be made to the St. John Nepomucene Catholic Cemetery and will be accepted at the church.
 
Condolences and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.gholsonfuneralhome.com.
 
The Gholson Funeral Home of Dahlgren is entrusted with arrangements.

BENTON – Lowell “Bud” Cook, 87, of Benton passed away Monday evening March 1, 2021 at Deaconess Midtown Hospital in Evansville, Indiana.

Mr. Cook was born on September 16, 1933 in Whittington, IL the son of Alva & Pearl (House) Cook.

Bud was a Farmer for many years, he worked for many years selling farm & livestock equipment. In later years he mowed Crab Orchard Golf Course & worked at the Wooly Wash in Marion. He enjoyed drinking coffee, square dancing & socalizing with his friends.

Mr. Cook is survived by his:

Children: Pam Minor & husband Mark of Ewing, Gary Cook & wife Doris of Benton, Kristi Picklesimer & husband Ward of Ewing.

Grandchildren: Brian Minor & wife April, Nathan Minor & wife Amy, Emily Skibo & husband Ryan, Erin McCommons & husband Casey, Elizabeth Roberts & husband Rex, Amy Cook, Amber Brayfield & husband Billy, Craig Cook & wife Emilee, Josh Picklesimer, Bryden Picklesimer, Jaron Picklesimer.

Several Great-Grandchildren

1 Brother: Bobby Joe Cook & wife Janet

Special Friend: Carol

Step-Daughter: Tracy

Mr. Cook was preceded in death by his Parents, Sisters-Louise Kramer, Mary Lou Kramer, Elaine Lucini & Peggy Womble and by a Great-Granddaughter-Sienna Faith Skibo.

Graveside funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. on Thursday, March 4th at the Shiloh Cemetery in Whittington with Pastor Richard Lance officiating. Burial will follow. There will be no visitation. Those attending the service are requested to meet at the cemetery.

For more information or to send online condolences, please visit www.mortonjohnstonfuneralhome.com.


BENTON – Justine Lewis, 96, passed away peacefully at the Stonebridge Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, in Benton, IL on February 27, 2021. 

Justine was born October 20, 1925, in Benton Township to Roy and Josephine (Aaron) Uhls. Justine married Harry Andrew Lewis, on March 29, 1943. He preceded her in death on September 19, 2005. She was a homemaker and a member of the Valier 1st Baptist Church. She is survived by four sons, Dan and Peggy Lewis of Prescott, AZ; Keith Lewis & Karen Barcus of Effingham, IL; Bruce and Vicki (Hicks) Lewis of Valier; Kevin and Karla (Newsom) Lewis of Sesser; several grandchildren and great grandchildren;  a sister and brother-in-law; Ethel Jean and Lester Glenn; two sisters-in-laws, Marie Uhls and Shirley Uhls; and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband; her parents; three brothers, Don, Bob and Lanny Dean; one granddaughter, Lacey, and one daughter-in-law, Rose.

Funeral services will be on Thursday, March 4, 2021 at 1 p.m. at the Valier First Baptist Church with Rev. Harl Ray Lewis officiating. Visitation will be on Thursday from 11 a.m. until the time of the service at 1 p.m. at the church. Burial will be at the Mt. Pleasant Cemetery in Valier. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Valier 1st Baptist Church.

For more information go to our website www.gilbertfuneralhomes.com.


BENTON – Phyllis June Holleman, 87, of Benton passed away Saturday afternoon, Feb. 27, 2021 at her home.

She was born in West Frankfort, IL on June 29, 1933, the daughter of Seth & Nellie (Bryant) Holleman.

She was of the Baptist faith.

She is survived by her six children: Eddie Perkins & wife Joni of Christopher, Sherry Rose of Troy, Roxanne Perkins of Benton, Melissa Taylor & fiancé Kelley Cocke of Benton, James Perkins of Spillertown, April Piper of Benton.

Grandchildren: Chyann Jones, Dakota & Chris Conder, Jesse Perkins, Barry Piper, Seth Bradley & wife Jessica, Ian Perkins & wife Candace, Jacob Perkins & wife Misty, Tracy Cavender, Casey Cavender.

21 Great-Grandchildren

She was preceded in death by her parents, by a son-Eddie Perkins, a Great-Granddaughter, two Sisters-Nora Cameron & Burldean Drysdale & by four Brothers-George, Fred, Joe & Bryant, and by her Best Friend: Doris Ramsey.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, March 3 at the Morton & Johnston Funeral Home in Benton with Pastor Lance Cockrum officiating. Burial will be in the Mulkeytown Cemetery. Visitation will be after 11 a.m. Wednesday at the funeral home.

For more information or to send online condolences, please visit www.mortonjohnstonfuneralhome.com.


MCLEANSBORO – Charles Franklin Ritchey, age 85, of McLeansboro, IL, passed away at 2:55 a.m., Friday, February 26, 2021 at Deaconess Midtown Hospital in Evansville, IN.

Charles was born February 26, 1936 in Walpole, IL to Howard Leland Ritchey and Vida Lee (Kent) Ritchey. He attended schools in Hamilton County as well as receiving a 2 year degree from Lockyear Business College. He married Carole Campbell on August 23, 1958 at the Norris City Methodist Church. He was employed by Drake Oil Co. and worked as a Shell Oil Jobber.

He attended First Presbyterian Church of McLeansboro, IL.

Charles was a member of Polk Lodge 137 A.F. & A.M.; was a sponsor of Eastern Star; a Past Member of the Walpole Tuscan Masonic Lodge and served as Master of both lodges; was past member of The Knights Templar Scottish Rite and was a Shriner. He was a member of the Jaycee’s, Chamber of Commerce, Hamilton County Hospital Board, Unit 10 School Board and Past President of the Hamilton County Fair Board. Charles loved playing guitar with buddies or anyone who enjoyed music as much as he did.                        

Survivors include his wife Carole of McLeansboro; daughter Julie Ritchey of Benton, IL; son Tracy Ritchey of Benton, IL;  Brother Danny Ritchey (wife Sharon) of Watertown, WI; Sister-in-Law, Judith Ritchey of McLeansboro, IL.

Grandchildren are Morgan Johnson, Hermosa Beach, CA; Caleb Johnson and Wife Tiffany, Mt. Vernon, IL;  Caterina Ritchey of Collinsville, IL. Great Grandchildren: Layla, Paisley and Bowdrie Johnson. Numerous nieces and nephews.

Preceding him in death were his parents, two sisters – Betty Gene Frederickson and Roberta Kay Skibinski; two brothers – Alfonso Burr Ritchey and Howard Ritchey, Jr.

Private family memorial services will be held at a later date.

The Harre Funeral Home in McLeansboro is in charge of arrangements for Mr. Ritchey.


CHRISTOPHER – Mary Josephine Kaminski died on Saturday, February 27, 2021 at the age of 97 in the home she purchased just after WWII with her first husband, Alfred Davis. They shared 14 years of marriage, and Alfred preceded her in death in 1957. She married Julius Kaminski in October 1962. They shared 42 years of marriage and one daughter, and he preceded her in death in September 2004.

Mary is survived by her daughter, Mary B. Nemetsky, her son-in-law John Nemetsky, and one grandson, Peter David Nemetsky, all of Carbondale, many nieces and nephews, and her devoted caregivers, Cathy, Brenda, Gail, Evelyn, Jackie, Mary Lee, and Lynne.

She was also preceded in death by her parents, Frank Fourez Sr. and Mary (Bial) Fourez, one brother, Frank “Bunny” Fourez Jr. and his wife, Lawanda, one nephew, Larry Fourez Sr., and one niece, Julie Ames Anderton.

Mary worked at Family Outfitters and then at Kirk’s Pharmacy in Christopher, from where she retired in 1987 after 30 years.

In lieu of flowers, Mary’s wish was that memorials be made to St. Andrew Catholic Church, Chapel Fund, or Hospice of Southern Illinois. 

Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Wednesday March 3, 2021 at 11 a.m. at St. Andrew Catholic Church in Christopher. Visitation will be from 10 a.m. until the time of the Funeral Mass at 11 a.m. Burial will be at St. Andrew Catholic Cemetery. 

Please note: Covid-19 recommendations will be strictly observed. Facial coverings and social distancing are required.

For more information go to our website www.gilbertfuneralhomes.com.


BENTON – John Bertice “Bert” Keelin, age 95, of Benton, passed away at 6:45 a.m. Friday, February 26, 2021 at his daughter Pat’s home.

Private family services will be held Monday, March 1, 2021 at the Leffler Funeral Home of Benton. Burial will be in the Masonic & Odd Fellows Cemetery in Benton.

Due to health concerns related to COVID-19, visitation and funeral services are limited to 50 people at one time. Facial coverings are required and social distancing should be observed. If you are sick, please stay at home.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in memory of Bert may be made to the Immanuel Baptist Church New Building Fund or to the Rend Lake College Foundation, and may be mailed to the Leffler Funeral Home, 401 East Main Street, Benton, IL 62812.

To leave online condolences to the family or to share memories of Bert, visit www.lpfuneralhome.com.


SPRINGERTON – Bonnie Jean Gray, 87, a resident of Springerton, Illinois, passed away Thursday, February 25, 2021 at Wabash Christian Village in Carmi, IL.

She was born April 8, 1933 in Belle Prairie, IL to William and Nellie (Coker) Sefried. Bonnie was a home maker and a devoted member of the Hopewell Baptist Church near McLeansboro.

Bonnie is survived by her daughter Rhonda and husband Bernie Pfister of Enfield, IL; brother Rev. Robert Sefried of Belle Prairie, IL; grandson Brandon Pfister of Enfield, IL; and great granddaughter Mikayla Pfister of Enfield, IL.

She was preceded in death by her parents, husband Charles Gray; and one son, Ronald Ray Muehlenbein.

Graveside funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. Sunday, February 28, 2021, at Crouch Cemetery near Belle Prairie, IL with Rev. Robert Sefried officiating. Those attending the service are asked to meet the cemetery.

Condolences and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.gholsonfuneralhome.com.

The Gholson Funeral Home of McLeansboro is entrusted with arrangements.


MCLEANSBORO – Effie Tressie Smith, daughter of Bobbie Trout and Mabel (Bond) Trout, was born on March 30, 1919 in Hamilton County, Illinois.

Effie departed this life on Friday, February 12, 2021 peacefully in her home with loved ones at her side. At the time of her passing, Effie had attained the age of 101 years, 10 months and 13 days.
 
She married Marion Lewis Smith on March 10, 1938. Marion preceded Effie in death on August 23, 1997.
 
Effie is survived by her son, Larry Dean Smith of Dawson Springs, KY; her sisters: Delsie Lynch, Elsie York and Grace Millenbine, all of McLeansboro, IL; sister-in-law, Wilma Rose of McLeansboro, IL; seven grandchildren, many great grandchildren, and many great-great grandchildren, nieces and nephews. Effie is also survived by extended very special family, Jim and Jackie Scott, Gene and Bonnie Mark and Becky Golding.
 
Effie was preceded in death by her parents Bobbie and Mabel Trout, son Gary Darvin Smith, brothers Herschel, Orlan and Kenneth Trout, sister Dollie Smith and daughter-in-law Carolyn Smith.
 
Effie, affectionately called Mamaw or Grandma by all who knew and loved her, loved to crochet, quilt and garden. She enjoyed all three of these hobbies right up to and after her 101st birthday.
 
Effie enjoyed her last year with extra special care, being surrounded daily with loved ones. Many wonderful moments filled with laughter, joy, dancing and singing everyday, so many precious memories made to add to our already overflowing library.
 
Funeral services will be held Saturday, February 27, 2021 at 11:15 a.m. at the Gholson Funeral Home in McLeansboro with Rev. Rodney Brock officiating. Visitation will be Saturday, February 27 from 10 a.m. until the time of service at the funeral home. Effie will be laid to rest at Hickory Hill Cemetery near Broughton. Memorial donations may be made to the donors choice and will be accepted at the Gholson Funeral Home in McLeansboro.
 
Online condolences may be shared at www.gholsonfuneralhome.com.
 
The Gholson Funeral Home of McLeansboro is entrusted with arrangements.

WEST FRANKFORT – James Eartly Frost, age 85, of West Frankfort, passed away at 8:50 a.m. Monday, February 22, 2021 at his home.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, February 28, 2021 at the Leffler Funeral Home of Benton, with Rev. Rick Fowler officiating. Burial will follow in the Logan Cemetery. Visitation will be from noon to 2 p.m. Sunday at the Leffler Funeral Home of Benton.

We ask everyone attending the services to be considerate of others and to practice social distancing. We are limited to 50 people in our funeral home at a time, masks are required. If you are sick, please stay at home.

To leave online condolences to the family, or share memories of James, visit www.lpfuneralhome.com.


MCLEANSBORO – Mary Louise Widick, 83, of McLeansboro, IL passed away Saturday, February 20, 2021 at Wabash Christian Village in Carmi, IL.

She was born July 9, 1937 in Elkton, TN to Georgie Cathron (Whitfield) and Thomas Lawton “Pete” Gregory, Sr. She graduated from Murray State College in Murray, KY in 1959 with a degree in Vocal Music Education and then moved to McLeansboro, IL to begin her teaching career. She married Leland L. Widick of McLeansboro on June 16, 1963.

Mary spent 42 years as a public school teacher. Her specialty was vocal music, but at times she also taught business and math. Relatively early in her teaching career, she completed a Masters of Education degree by attending evening classes at the University of Evansville. Outside of the classroom, she served in various extracurricular capacities throughout the years such as twirler, cheerleader, and color guard sponsor, co-director for high school drama productions, as well as other positions. After retiring, Mary continued her love of teaching as a substitute teacher for Hamilton County Schools, and she joined the Illinois Retired Teachers Association.

Throughout her life, Mary was an active member of her church. She sang in and occasionally directed choirs and cantatas; she provided special music not only for her church, but at other churches as well; and she was a member of various church groups.

Mary was a patient, caring, kind-hearted person who was a devoted wife and mother. She never met a stranger and was always willing to lend a helping hand. Aside from music, she enjoyed sewing, loved flowers (especially sunflowers), and collected various things from Precious Moments to angels to coins. But, most of all, Mary cherished spending time with family and friends, whether they were playing games, working jigsaw puzzles, enjoying a meal, or just talking. She is dearly loved and will be greatly missed.

Mary is survived by her husband, Leland; two children: Eric Widick (Suzann) of Kings, IL and Beth Wilkerson (Scott) of Greencastle, IN; six grandchildren: Lesley Cusumano (Salvatore) of Mt. Morris, IL, Lindsey Widick of Memphis, TN, Robert Widick (Avigale Monroy) of Green Bay, WI, William Widick (Jessica Schult) of Boise, ID, and Zachary and Benjamin Wilkerson of Greencastle, IN; and one great-grandchild: Aria Louise Cusumano of Mt. Morris, IL.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Cathron and Thomas Gregory, Sr. and her two brothers, Thomas Gregory, Jr. and George Gregory. 

Funeral services will be held Friday, February 26, 2021 at 11 a.m. at the Gholson Funeral Home in McLeansboro with Revs. Leland Widick, Ron Nelson and Russell Anderson officiating the service. Visitation will be held Thursday, February 25 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Gholson Funeral Home in McLeansboro. Mary will be laid to rest at Richardson Hill Cemetery near Dahlgren. Per CDC and state guidelines masks are required and social distancing will be observed.
 
Memorial donations may be made to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and will be accepted at the Gholson Funeral Home in McLeansboro.
 
Online condolences may be shared at www.gholsonfuneralhome.com.
 
The Gholson Funeral Home of McLeansboro is entrusted with the arrangements.

CARMI – Juanita J. Harris, 91, of Carmi, IL, passed away Sunday, February 21, 2021. Juanita was the daughter of Jacob Clay and Effie Mae (Hunt) Mezo. She was born April 2, 1929 in McLeansboro, IL. Juanita married Rex R. Harris on October 11, 1947 in Morganfield, KY and they moved to Carmi, IL in 1948.

She is survived by her daughter, Debra Harris Kircher and her husband Timothy J. Kircher and her son Robin R. Harris and his wife, Michelle Land Harris all of Carmi. Surviving Grandchildren are Kristen (Rob) Frymire of Evansville, IN, Jarod (Mindi) Pretzsch of Spring Hill, TN, Jason (Natalie) Pretzsch of Indianapolis, IN, Rory Harris of Carmi, IL and Kit Harris of Carmi, IL. Great -grandchildren are Lauryn Frymire (John), Alex Frymire (Alyssa), Morgan (Danny) Aldridge, Megan Turner (Connor), Riley Frymire (Cory), Kade Pretzsch, Alivia Pretzsch, Brexton Pretzsch and a great-great-grandchild, Dixie Aldridge. Juanita was preceded in death by her parents, husband Rex, her son Randy L. Harris, five sisters and three brothers.

Juanita earned her RN degree from Olney School of Nursing and a BSN from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville Nursing School. She was inducted into Epsilon Eta Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau National Honor Society of Nursing in 1983. Juanita dedicated her nursing to the Lord’s Christian Service in 1977. She retired from nursing in 2002 as an office nurse after enjoying 30 years of nursing in doctors’ offices. In 1968, Juanita was named by the Home Culture Society as their “Women of the Year” for her church, civic and scholastic volunteer work. Juanita was a devoted member of the First Christian Church in Carmi, IL for over 70 years where she was a member of the Christian and Willing Workers Sunday School class, active in youth programs and active in the Joy Group. She was also a dedicated member of Wabash Chapter of NSDAR (National Society Daughters of the American Revolution), the Hawthorne Chapter of White County Extension and a member of the White County Historical Society. She loved her family, her many friends and her special extended nursing family and friends.

Per Juanita’s request, there will be no visitation at this time. A celebration of life will be planned at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial contributions be made at any First Bank to the Juanita Harris Nursing Scholarship Fund to benefit a future nursing student.

The Harre Funeral Home in McLeansboro is in charge of arrangements.


BUCKNER – Thomas David Winn, 67, of Buckner, passed away on February 17, 2021 at the Memorial Hospital of Carbondale.

He was born on July 6, 1953 in Herrin, IL. He married Melissa (Harrison) Winn on October 17, 1981. He is survived by his wife Melissa Winn of Buckner; brother-in-law Donald (Florie) Harrison of Salem; cousins Marion (Mollie) Veach of Valier and their children Dixie Miller and Jim Veach. Thomas worked for PJR and Associates and was a member of the Iron Workers Local # 782, he was also a Vietnam Veteran serving in the United States Marine Corp. and a lifetime member of the Sesser VFW. He loved to shoot trap, work in his garden, riding his side by side, camping, hunting and fishing. He was preceded in death by his parents Richard “Tuffy” and Lorene (Stewart) Winn and a brother Richard Winn.

Funeral services will be on Saturday, February 27, 2021 at 1 p.m. at the Gilbert Funeral Home in Christopher with Brother Larry Cook officiating. Visitation will be on Saturday from 11 a.m. until the time of the service at 1 p.m. Burial will be at the Masonic and IOOF Cemetery in Benton. The family would like to give a special thanks to all the DaVita Dialysis Heroes in Benton, Dr. Kevin Chen, Angelito Tacderas NP, Dr. Rodney Miller, Dr. Al-Zoubaidi, Dr. Michelle Jenkins, Lisa Jones, Dr. Haroon, all the ICU nurses at the Memorial Hospital of Carbondale, Sherry Palmer and the Gilbert Funeral Home for all of their care and compassion during Tom’s journey. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Honor Flight of Southern Illinois, Benton-West City Ministerial Alliance Food Pantry or Franklin County Animal Control.  Envelopes will be available at the funeral home. 

Tomorrow is not promised, Live, Laugh and Love Today.

For more information go to our website www.gilbertfuneralhomes.com.


CHRISTOPHER – Mary L. Marshall, 64, of Christopher, IL, passed away on February 18, 2021 at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St Louis, MO.

She was born on April 25, 1956 in Louisville, KY to Earl H. and Cecille (Colomb) Miller. At a very young age she was adopted by Robert Lee and Marie Miller. She married George Marshall on November 22, 1975 in Murry, KY.

Mary is survived by her husband George Marshall of Christopher; three daughters Angela and husband Michael Sharp of Indianapolis, IN, Melissa and husband Josh Leedle of St. Louis, MO and Jessica and husband Wes Beaty of Coello, IL; grandchildren Mckenzie Sharp, Megan Sharp, Logan Beaty, Dylan Leedle and Bailey Leedle; one sister Linda Coggeshall of Ft. Pierce, FL. and two brothers Paul L. Miller of Louisville, KY and Earl H. Miller of Bardstown, KY and many aunts, uncles, nephews and nieces.

She was preceded in death by her parents, adopted parents, one sister Susan Miller, uncle and aunt Cletus and Agnes Fair as well as many other relatives.

Mary was a member of the Christopher Church of Christ. Prior to being physically disabled in 1999, Mary had worked as a CNA in area nursing homes, as well as a Teacher’s Aide for special education children at the Benton School District #47 in Benton, IL. 

Graveside services will be on Friday, February 26, 2021 at 12 p.m. at the Ivy Hills Cemetery in Hardinsburg, KY with Brother Roy Plumlee officiating. Visitation will be on Thursday, February 25, 2021 at the Gilbert Funeral home in Christopher, IL from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m.

Mary devoted her life to serving God, His Son Jesus Christ, the Lord’s Church and her children and grandchildren. She is greatly missed by her family, friends and all who knew her.

In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Christopher Church of Christ. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home.

For more information go to our website www.gilbertfuneralhomes.com.