William Philip “Bill” DeWerff, 77, of Owaneco, passed away Saturday, November 17, 2018 while in Hospice at St. John’s Hospital in Springfield. He was born April 12, 1941 at home in Nokomis to the late Roy & Beatrice (Avery) DeWerff. He married Elaine Clouter of Owaneco in 1963 and she survives.
Bill graduated from Nokomis High School in 1959 and continued his education by receiving a bachelor’s degree in Agriculture Education from Southern Illinois University in 1963. He then went on to earn his master’s degree from the University of Illinois in 1968. He started a career as an agriculture teacher in Hardin, IL. After two years he and Elaine moved to Windsor, IL where he would teach Agriculture Education for 11 years. During his time in Windsor, Bill also worked for the Army Corps of Engineers as a park ranger at Lake Shelbyville. In 1976 it was a tossup between education and dirt, and the dirt won. From 1976-2005 he farmed and raised cattle and hogs. Bill’s hobbies always took him to the outdoors. He would play golf and softball all summer. He spent long hours in the duck blinds, quail and pheasant hunting, along with fishing the lakes of Illinois. When he wasn’t hunting he was watching his favorite sports teams which included any team his grandkids participated in. Bill was a member of the United in Faith Church, Pana and loved to travel with Elaine and watch western movies on TV.
Along with his wife Elaine, Bill is survived by his son Wayne (Pamela) DeWerff of Owaneco; daughter Karen (Amos) Crapse of Columbus, IN; grandchildren Megan (Zachary) DeWerff Rhodes of Taylorville, Brock DeWerff of Owaneco, and Kenny Crapse (Fiancé Alex Bradley) of Nashville, TN; and brother Roger (June) DeWerff of Nokomis. He was preceded by his parents and sister Patricia Grimes.
Funeral services for Bill will be held Saturday, November 24, 2018 in United in Faith Church in Pana at 10:00 a.m. with Pastor Joel Jackle-Hugh officiating. Burial will be in Ohlman Cemetery. Visitation will be held Friday, November 23, 2018 from 5:00-7:00 p.m. at McCracken-Dean Funeral Home.
Memorials in Bill’s honor, and in lieu of flowers may be made to the United In Faith Church, 609 Fairgrounds Rd., Pana, IL 62557 and will be accepted by McCracken-Dean Funeral Home who is assisting the family.