Albert “Harry” Ghere, 91, of Arcola, passed away at 2:55 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 10, 2013 at Evergreen Nursing & Rehabilitation Center, Effingham.
Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. today, Oct. 14, at Shrader Funeral Home, 204 N. Locust St., Arcola, with the Rev. Drew Holloway officiating. Burial will be in the Arcola Township Cemetery with military graveside rites accorded. Memorials are suggested to the Arcola Foundation. Online condolences may be shared via hilligossshraderfh.com.
Mr. Ghere was born Oct. 31, 1921 in Arcola, the son of Roy Andrew and Lillie E. Smith Ghere. He married Lila Lee Irons on June 14, 1942 in Mattoon. She preceded him in death on Nov. 15, 2010.
Harry graduated from Arcola High school in 1941, where he lettered for 4 years in football, basketball, track and baseball. He worked as a brakeman on the Illinois Central railroad out of Champaign until he was drafted in 1942. After training at Camp Crowder, Mo., he served in the South Pacific for 30 months in the US Army Signal Corps. He was discharged on Nov. 11, 1945. After World War II Harry worked at Keohne Manufacturing in Mattoon and the Mattoon Flower Shop. He and his wife then moved to Arcola where they owned and operated the L & H Flower Shop and he worked at Thos. Monahan Co. He worked there for many years. He sponsored and coached the L & H Cubs Little League Baseball team in the late '50s.
He loved spending time at Lake Mattoon with his family. He enjoyed watching his grandkids' and great-grandkids' school activities. Harry was always a patient boat driver and helped all his kids and grandkids learn to ski, fish and love the lake. In his later years Harry enjoyed watching his great-grandkids learn to ski, kneeboard and wakeboard. He was so proud of all of them. Harry was the last of the 17 children in his family. The Ghere family was one of very few 6 Star families during World War II. All of the boys in the family served during the war.
Survivors include his daughter, Connie Walton and husband Sam of Effingham; son, Ron Ghere and wife Connie of Mattoon; six grandchildren, Rob Walton and wife Linda of Chicago, Jeff Walton and wife Carissa of Effingham, Mark Walton and wife Heather of Brewton, Ala., Marissa Banovz and husband Jason of Bethalto, Ryan Ghere and wife Lori of Mattoon, and Darcie Kiessling and husband Brian of Portage, Mich.; 15 great-grandchildren, Blake Walton of Chicago, Brianna, Conner and Ava Walton all of Effingham, Harrison, Kylee and Collin Walton all of Brewton, Ala., Justin and Brooke Banovz of Bethalto, Jacob, Shane, Lily and Maggie Ghere all of Mattoon, and Alex and Claire Kiessling all of Portage, Mich.
Harry was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, John, George, Donnie, Bobby, Russ, Jim and an infant brother; and sisters, Alberta, Gertrude, Lorraine, Edna, Louise, Marguerite, Lillie, Maxine and Jo Ellen.