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Virgil Frank Jansen

Obituary
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SUTTER, Ill. -- Virgil Frank Jansen, 93, of Lewis County Nursing Home in Canton, Mo., formerly of Sutter, died on Saturday (July 12, 2014) in the home.

He was born on June 29, 1921, in a log cabin in the northwest area of Quincy to Fred and Ellen Hilgenbrinck Jansen.

Virgil attended St. John Catholic School in Quincy and Ursa (Ill.) High School. He was a man of great intelligence and reasoning. He passed on many words of wisdom to his children and grandchildren.

Virgil was married to Rosemary Schwank on Oct. 9, 1946, in St. Francis Catholic Church in Quincy by Monsignor Martin B. Hellrigel of St. Louis. Rosemary died on May 29, 2007, after 60 years of marriage.

Virgil was a member of St. Francis Catholic Church. His religious beliefs and values were a very important part of his life. He believed that everything had a purpose and reason and was not to be wasted.

Virgil served in the infantry and ordinance in the European Theatre during World War II from April 19, 1944, to June 6, 1946. He landed in Normandy (France) and joined the 5th Division. During this time he fought on the French-German Line. His division went in to the Saar Valley of Germany and was moved up to the Battle of the Bulge in Luxemburg. Virgil captured a German captain. One night, as a scout, he identified a German company moving around his company's flank. Artillery was called in after he identified the enemy's location on a map. Virgil spent 89 days in an English hospital. Upon discharge, he was stationed in Steyr, Austria. There he was an assistant production manager of the Steyr Automobile Factory. Virgil hired 70 men from the Balkans (former German prisoners). Under his direction, in one week, they equipped an empty warehouse to convert army vehicles to usable trucks for European countries. Virgil started a machine tool inventory in one-sixth of the American-held Austria to locate equipment Germans had stolen from countries prior to and during World War II. Then Virgil established a humanitarian truck line (convoy) through the Russian-occupied area of Austria to supply the needs of the American, British and French occupation troops and civilians in Vienna. He held all of these jobs simultaneously.

Virgil was awarded the Bronze Star and Combat Infantryman Badge in the field for heroic and meritorious achievement in military operations involving conflict with the opposing armed force. He also received the Expert Rifle Badge, Good Conduct Medal and the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with two battle stars and an Honorable Service Medal.

Virgil retired from the International Association of Machinists and was honored with a 30-year medal. Virgil worked as a toolmaker at Cooper Industries before retiring in 1982.

He was a member of UCT since 1957 and the Farm Bureau since 1941.

Virgil and his wife engaged in farming near Lima since 1950. He loved farming and found joy, peace and contentment in his rural surroundings. Virgil and his wife traveled over most of the United States, including Hawaii, southern Canada and parts of northern Mexico and Western Europe.

Virgil is survived by two children, Robert Jansen and his companion, Shelia McEowen, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and Sharon Murphy of Fordland, Mo.; three grandchildren, Douglass Jansen and his wife, Krisdeena, Brian Jansen, and Jennifer Cooper and her husband, William "B.J."; and great-grandchildren, Hunter and Jentry Cooper and Ryan Jansen. Numerous nieces, nephews and other relatives also survive.

In addition to his wife, Virgil was also preceded in death by his parents; four brothers, Marcellus, Richard, Harold and LeRoy Jansen; and one sister, Norma Jean Engle.

SERVICES: 9:30 a.m. Thursday, July 17, in the Duker and Haugh Funeral Home in Quincy and at 10 a.m. in St. Francis Catholic Church in Quincy. Interment will be in Calvary Cemetery in Quincy.

VISITATION: 4 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 16, in the Duker and Haugh Funeral Home with a rosary being said at 7 p.m.

MEMORIALS: .

ARRANGEMENTS: Duker and Haugh Funeral Home, Quincy.

Condolences may be expressed online at www.whig.com.
Published in Quincy Herald-Whig from July 14 to July 16, 2014
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Duker & Haugh Funeral Home
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