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VANCE L. FOLKMAN


1920 - 2014 | Obituary Condolences
MOUNT PROSPECT - Vance L. Folkman, 94, died at the Midwest Palliative and Hospice CareCenter on July 26, 2014. Vance was born on May 26, 1920 in Bonduel, Wisconsin to August and Vera Folkman and grew up in a family of 4 children. Vance graduated from Arlington High School in 1939 where he ran track and held the school's record in the quarter mile for 17 years. Vance married his first wife, Delores Rizzi, in November 1941. Vance served in the U.S. Army Air Force during WWII and was a nose gunner in a B-24 bomber. Towards the end of the war his plane was shot down north of Japan and he was held as a prisoner of war in Russia for approximately 4 months. Vance received the Purple Heart for his service in the war. Vance and Delores had 3 children and they built a house in Mount Prospect in 1949. After a long illness, Delores died in August 1960 and Vance married his second and current wife Brunnhilde (Bunny) Bessemer in October 1961. Before they married, Bunny was a very close and supportive friend to the family during Delores' illness. Vance and Bunny had one daughter. In addition to being a devoted husband and father, Vance worked hard and was also active in the community. He worked for Illinois Bell Telephone Company for 39 years and retired in 1985. Vance also served as a Boy Scout troop leader for many years and was elected for three terms to the District 59 School Board. During his tenure on the school board, Vance served as president for one term and lead the district during a time of rapid growth when the district increased from one school to 14 schools. Vance had a strong interest in astronomy - he simply loved gazing at the stars, especially through his telescope. His trips to Washington DC to visit the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum and the WWII Memorial were highlights. Vance loved to socialize with people, he was warm hearted and quick witted. A real character who enjoyed making others laugh. Vance is survived by his wife Bunny; daughter Patricia (John) Halpaus, Red Wing, MN; son Daniel (Juanita Ellias), Milwaukee WI; son Gordon (Mary), Forest Lake, MN; daughter Janice (Duane) Moore; grandchildren: Leana (Bill) Zimmermann and Scott Groat, Chad (Naoko) and Brian Folkman, Harly and Scott Moore; great-grandchildren Mike, Jesse, Elizabeth Cox, and Adreana Moore, and great-great grandchildren Arik and Jacob. He is also survived by his sister Vera (Buell) Green, Bettendorf, IA. Vance was preceded in death by his brother Daune and sister Maynie Tobler. Memorial Services will be held at the Mount Prospect Bible Church on Saturday, August 9, 2014. Visitation will be from 10:00am to noon and the service will be from noon to 1:00pm. In lieu of flowers, the family would like donations to be made to the Mount Prospect Bible Church or the Midwest Palliative and Hospice CareCenter.


Published in Chicago Suburban Daily Herald on July 30, 2014
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