Obituaries

Kenneth Ray Webb

TUNNEL HILL — Kenneth Ray Webb, age 91 years, a resident of Tunnel Hill, Illinois, passed away Wednesday afternoon, August 12, 2020, at 4:22 PM.

Kenneth Ray Webb
Kenneth Ray Webb

Ken was born September 19, 1928, on the family farm in rural Johnson County.  He was the second child of nine children born to Ray and Golda (Hankla) Webb.

On December 24, 1951 he married the love of his life, Edith (Johns) Webb, in Piggott, Arkansas.  She survives.

Ken is also survived by daughters: Barbara (Terry) Watkins of Tunnel Hill, IL, Ellen Eastman of Goreville, IL, Lisa Webb of Goreville, IL; and son – Keith Webb (Justine Deaton) of Tunnel Hill, IL; grandchildren – Bryan (Beth) Webb, Danielle Eastman, Stefanie (TJ) Tripp, Courtney (Ryan) Suits, Bridgett (Scott) Brown, Ashlee Webb (Jarell James), Kaylee Webb, Emilee Webb, Shanna (Jon) Green, Amber (Jason) Halstead, and Jarred Deaton; 19 great grandchildren – Brooklyn, Ethan, Tyler, Kyndall, Jayden, Cole, Breanna, Grayson, Dylan, Kypton, Weston, Jasper, Alexis, Peyton, Kyleigh, Tristan, Liam, Avery, and Cameron; his siblings – Elaine (Reggie) Romine, Glenn (Phyllis) Webb, Charlene (Dale) Hodge, and Phillip (Cara) Webb; a brother-in-law – Bob Johns; as well as extended family of numerous cousins, nieces, and nephews also survive him.

In addition to his parents, Ken was preceded in death by his in-laws – Earl and Carmel (Alsip) Johns; siblings – Myra (Harley) Throgmorton, Bob (Edna Ann) Webb, Norma (David) Martin, and Jean Phillips; a sister-in-law – Pat (Sam) Choate; brother-in-law – Earl Ray Johns; and his beloved son-in-law – Daniel Eastman.

Ken attended Webb School, Goreville High School, and graduated from Vienna High School in 1945.  He then attended Southern Illinois University for two years and completed his Bachelor of Science Degree at the University of Illinois earning a Smith Hughes Degree in Agriculture.  His first job was to begin a new agriculture department at Goreville High School.  After just barely starting his career, the Korean Conflict re-opened the draft and he served the United States proudly in the U.S. Army stationed at the Ladd Air Force Base in Fairbanks, Alaska.  He later returned to Goreville and continued teaching Vocational Agriculture for over 30 years in Johnson County teaching in the Goreville and Vienna High Schools.

Ken learned early in life the value of hard work and community involvement.  He worked endlessly to be a successful farmer, teacher, FFA Advisor, and community leader.  The FFA Motto:  Learning to Do, Doing to Learn, Earning to Live, and Living to Serve was not only what he taught but how he lived.  He was an active member of the Johnson County Farm Bureau, SouthEastern Illinois Cooperative Board of Directors, Southern Illinois Power Cooperative Board, Johnson County Teacher’s Association, and Johnson County Retired Teacher’s Organization.

As a member of the Tunnel Hill Community of Christ Church, he served many years as church school director, teacher, and Ordained Elder.

Kenneth was also honored with the Honorary American Farmer Degree in 1981, Conservation Teacher of the Year, Conservation Farmer of the Year, and nominated as “Illinois Teacher of the Year.”

Kenneth’s beautiful smile and infectious laugh will be missed.  he rarely met a stranger and treated everyone with love, kindness, and respect whether family, friend, neighbor, colleague, student, or a new acquaintance.

Visitation will be held Saturday afternoon, August 15, 2020, from 4 PM – 8 PM at Bailey Funeral Home in Vienna.  Additionally, there will be visitation held Sunday, August 16, 2020, from 11 AM – 12:45 PM at the Community of Christ Church, 5170 Tunnel Hill Road, Tunnel Hill, Illinois.

A family service honoring the life of Kenneth Ray Webb will be conducted Sunday afternoon, August 16, 2020, at 1 PM at the Community of Christ Church.  Dr. Glenn Webb will officiate.  To view a live stream of the funeral service, please visit the Tunnel Hill Community of Christ Facebook page.

A Public committal service will be conducted at 2 PM Sunday afternoon at Webb Cemetery.  Military graveside rites will be accorded by the Beggs-Gurley VFW Post # 5222 and the Illinois National Guard Burial Honors Detail.

Those attending the visitation and funeral service are requested to observe customarily accepted social distancing procedures. All attendees are reminded that, in accordance with recently announced State of Illinois guidelines, masks or face coverings are required in public spaces.  

The family requests that memorial contributions be given to the Goreville High School FFA, 201 South Ferne Clyffe Road, Goreville, IL 62939, the Vienna High School FFA, 601 North First Street, Vienna, IL 62995, the Community of Christ Church, c/o Phil Webb, 5140 Tunnel Hill Road, Tunnel Hill, IL 62972, or Hospice of Southern Illinois, 204 Halfway Road, Marion, IL 62959.

To share a memory of Ken or to leave a message of condolence for his family, please visit www.baileyfh.com

Arrangements have been entrusted to Bailey Funeral Home in Vienna.

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