Wendy R. Parsons
Eureka-Wendell " Wendy" Parsons, 83, Eureka, IL, went to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ at 5:20 a.m. Sunday morning, February 19, 2017. He was surrounded by his loving family.
Wendy was born December 19, 1933 in Eureka to Leland and Dorothy Parsons. He married his college sweetheart, Betty Lou Botner, in 1956. In August, they celebrated their 60th anniversary. She survives.
Wendy also leaves two sons, Michael Lewis Parsons, Eureka, and Monte Lee Parsons, St. Louis, one daughter, Wendy Jo (Michael) Melton, Denver, NC, and one sister, Dotty Jo (Bill) Eastman, Eureka. Wendy also has six wonderful grandchildren: Brittany, Chance, Andrew, Ben, Luke, and Elizabeth, and one great grandchild, Keegan, as well as many cousins, nieces and nephews.
Wendy was preceded in death by his parents, one brother, Leland Gene Parsons, and one grandson, Joshua Michael Parsons.
Wendy graduated from Eureka High School in 1951. He went on to receive his teaching degree from Olivet Nazarene University and his Masters degree in Education from Northern Illinois University. He also served in the United States Army for 2 years.
Wendy always loved working with young people, and spent the next 27 years in the Sterling, IL area, as a schoolteacher, coach, principal and administrator, first at Jordan Elementary School, then with the Unit 5 District, and finally, at Twin City Nazarene School. After all these years, Wendy continued to hear from past students and friends.
For over 20 years, Wendy and his family attended the Sterling First Church of the Nazarene where he worked with the youth. As well, every summer, Wendy directed the Nazarene Youth Camp in Manville, IL where he loved every minute of it. He always said, "When you enjoy what you're doing, it doesn't seem like work."
In 1985, Wendy returned to Olivet Nazarene University, where he served 15 years as Director of Intramurals and Retention. During this time, Wendy had a special relationship with the students at ONU, and for many years, the "Wendy Parsons 5K Run" was part of each homecoming celebration.
Wendy always loved his hometown of Eureka, and upon retirement in 2001, he and Betty moved back home. Soon Wendy became involved in the community where he was a substitute teacher for the local Eureka schools, as well as an umpire and referee throughout central Illinois. Wendy was a loyal fan of Eureka High School sporting events, and just recently was honored with a "Wendy Parsons Night", at both the boys and girls basketball games.
As most people know, Wendy was quick to pull out his harmonica and never passed up an opportunity to play for his students, as well as total strangers. Wendy also ministered at various elder care facilities, singing, and playing his guitar and harmonica. As all can attest, Wendy always had fun at whatever he did.
Wendy's ultimate priority in life was to love and serve our Lord Jesus, his family, and others. He was an active member of Grace Presbyterian Church, in Peoria, where he taught Bible School and sang in the choir. Wendy especially enjoyed his "1st John 1:3" Sunday School class, where he said, "Everyone is family". He loved seeing everyone each Sunday morning.
In almost every situation, Wendy was the life of the party, whether playing games with his family and friends, or just sitting around talking. One of his favorite memories was running the Chicago Marathon with his two sons, at the ripe old age of 60.
Wendy's favorite Bible verse was, "I have fought the good fight. I have finished the race. I have kept the faith". (2 Timothy 4:7)
Wendy will be greatly missed.
Visitation will be held on Wednesday, Feb 22, 2017 from 4-8 p.m. at Argo-Ruestman-Harris Funeral Home in Eureka and also from 1-2 p.m. prior to services at the church on Thursday.
Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, February 23, 2017 at Grace Presbyterian Church in Peoria. Pastor Kerry Frantz and Rev. Woody Webb will officiate. Graveside services will be held at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday February 23, 2017 at Olio Township Cemetery in Eureka.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the South Side Peoria Mission or Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.argoruestmanharris.com.
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Eureka, IL 61530-1316
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8607 State Route 91
4:30 PM (CST)
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