Gerald E. "Jerry" Rhea, age 85, of Oquawka, Illinois, passed away at 10:30 A.M. on Wednesday, March 7, 2018 at his residence in Oquawka. He was born on August 6, 1932 in Monmouth, Illinois, the son of William Eldon and Iola (Strickler) Rhea. Jerry was reared and educated in Monmouth and was a graduate of Monmouth High School. After school, Jerry proudly served his Country during the Korean War in the United States Air Force. On September 13, 1957, he married Helen Darlene Hanley at the 2nd United Presbyterian Church in Monmouth and she preceded him in death on May 24, 2006. Jerry worked his entire career at Burlington Northern Railroad as a switchman. He loved to ride motorcycles, go camping at different motorcycle rallies, and travel with his wife, Helen. Jerry was an avid fan of Chicago Bears Football and Chicago White Sox Baseball. Jerry is survived by one daughter, Katherine (Francis) Merreighn of New Holland, IL, one sister, Cynthia (Rick) Ewing of Monmouth, IL, one granddaughter, Brittany, one grandson, Matthew, and one great-granddaughter, Akyra and numerous nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by his parents, one son, William "Bill" Rhea, two sisters; Nancy and Janet Rhea, and two brothers; Roger "Bud" and Randy Rhea.
The family plans to be present for visitation from 11:00 A.M. until 1:00 P.M. prior to the service at the funeral home.
A funeral service is planned for 1:00 P.M. on Thursday, March 15, 2018 at Turnbull Funeral Home in Monmouth, Illinois with Pastor Harold Long officiating. Interment with Military Honors will be at Warren County Memorial Park in Monmouth, Illinois. A memorial fund is being established for the Monmouth V.F.W. Post #2301 or the American Heart Association.
301 South Main Street
PO Box 18
Monmouth, Illinois 61462
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