William A. Strong Jr., age 72, of Ottawa, passed away Thursday, June 18, 2020, at OSF St. Francis in Peoria.
Funeral services will be at 2 p.m.on Thursday, July 2nd at Trinity Lutheran Church with Reverend David Ufkes officiating. Visitation will be from 12 until 2 p.m. the day of the service. Burial will be in Oakwood Memorial Park. In keeping with the guidelines set by the CDC as well as per the family’s request, all friends and family are asked to wear a mask and practice social distancing. Gladfelter-Roetker Funeral Home is assisting with arrangements.
William was born February 5, 1948, in Sandwich, Illinois, a son of William and Rosalie (Gallagher) Strong. He married Patricia Chase on August 30, 1969, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Ottawa. She preceded him in death on July 7, 1996. He married Kathleen Paull on December 27, 1997, at Pontiac Bible Church in Pontiac, Illinois, and she survives. William is survived by his son, William A. Strong III of Ottawa; daughter, Stacy (Christopher) Aubry of Ottawa; brother, Stephen (Judy) Strong of Ottawa; brother, Mark (Christine) Strong of Aurora; brothers-in-law, Jim Paull of Atlanta, Steve Paull of California, and David Paull of Burlington, Iowa; grandchildren Samuel and Benjamin Garland, Chase and Shiloh Strong, and Alexandra Aubry. He is preceded in death by his parents, mother-in-law, Mary (Kuntz) Paull, and a sister-in-law, Caroline Feirtag.
William loved other people and enjoyed any chance to be social with others. Bill was friendly, interested, and kind. He was an active member of Trinity Lutheran Church. He was a teacher at Ottawa Elementary School and was the Special Education Coordinator. He also worked at Snap-On Tools for a time. He enjoyed his work. William was active in the community serving on the Reddick Library Board, on the LaSalle County Board of Review, and as the Rutland Township Tax Assessor. Bill greeted each day with enthusiasm, optimism, and curiosity. He enjoyed musicals, traveling (he made it to 49 out of 50 states), and learning about Civil War history. Bill developed a love of reading and participated in a book club; his favorite book was Team of Rivals. He volunteered many hours working with The Friends of Dayton Bluffs; his research into the ownership records at the county clerk’s office was helpful for getting state approval to restore the Daniels Cemetery. Bill loved learning for the sake of learning and enjoyed taking classes at Illinois Valley Community College. More than anything, he loved and cherished his time spent with his family. He enjoyed using his time with his grandchildren to teach and learn with them about a variety of topics like birds, nature, weather, and places. Bill was grateful for simple pleasures; his attitude was reflected through his words and actions. We will miss his always-happy-to-see-you smile.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Reddick Public Library or Ottawa Elementary District # 141, both places of which Bill was very fond of.
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