Eugene L. “Gene” Decker, 78, of Atkinson, formerly of Annawan, passed away on Monday, May 27, 2019, at his residence. A Funeral Mass to celebrate his life will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, May 31, 2019, at St. Anthony Catholic Church, Atkinson. Reverend Stephen Engelbrecht will celebrate. Burial will follow at Sacred Heart Cemetery. Visitation will be held Thursday, May 30, 2019, from 4-7 p.m. at Vandemore Funeral Homes & Crematory – Atkinson Chapel. The Rosary will be recited at 3:30 p.m. Memorials may be directed to Hope Lodge (part of the American Cancer Society) or the Gene Decker Memorial Fund.
Eugene was born April 19, 1941, the son of Aubrey and Frances (Redshaw) Decker, in Lincoln, IL. He married Marie E. Greenwood on May 14, 1966, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, in Annawan. Gene and Marie moved from rural Annawan to Atkinson in 2005. Gene graduated from Prophetstown High School in 1959. He served in the United States Army Reserves for six years. Gene worked for Alcoa for 7 ½ years and started farming in Annawan and Hooppole area in 1968. His true passion was farming the land he loved. He was still active in the farming operations with his son. He enjoyed his drives checking his crops He was a seed corn representative for 30 years at Renk & Fontanelle Seed Company. He was active on the Annawan school board (1981 – 1989), a longtime member of the Illinois Farm Bureau board, served two terms on the Henry County Farm Bureau, and was a member of St. Anthony Catholic Church. His hobbies included reading and following the Bears and Cubs. He also enjoyed attending his grandsons’ sporting events and activities.
Those left to cherish his memory include his loving wife of 53 years, Marie; daughter, Annette Decker, Elkridge, MD; son, Greg (Kate) Decker, Atkinson; grandsons, Dylan and Kaleb Decker; brothers, Dean (Lauran) Decker, NV, Neil (Irma) Decker, Prophetstown, IL; and sister, Linda (Dave) Wherry, Fulton.
Gene was preceded in death by his parents, Aubrey and Frances.