GALESBURG - Mr. Howard Tolley of 99 Circle Drive, Galesburg, passed away at 1:33 a.m. Friday, July 26, 2013, at his home surrounded by family.
He was born May 6, 1923, on a farm near London Mills. He was the only child of Buford and Anna (Vollmar) Tolley. He married Marjorie Hoogberg on June 5, 1949, at Knoxville Presbyterian Church. She survives.
Also surviving are three children, Steven (Margaret) Tolley of Galesburg, Martha (Howard) Christensen of Crystal Lake and David (Katherine) Tolley of Avon; 10 grandchildren, Ellen Davis, Rachel Ryan, Janice Walters, Daniel Tolley, Julie Kallergis, Joe, Luke and Seth Tolley, Caroline and Michelle Christensen; and six great-grandsons.
He served in the Army Air Corps from 1943 to 1945 as a bombardier. After being discharged he attended the University of Illinois, College of Agriculture, graduating in 1947.
Upon graduation, he was employed by the University of Illinois Extension Service in Knox County as assistant farm adviser. He then served as farm adviser of Marshall-Putnam Counties in Henry, Ill., for four years.
Howard returned to Galesburg in 1961 and was employed by First Galesburg National Bank and Trust Co. for 30 years. He was vice president and manager of Agriculture Credit Department.
During this time he served on Agriculture Committees of the Chamber of Commerce, which included planning City-Farm Day Programs. He also served on the Carl Sandburg College Foundation.
Tolley was a leader in agriculture. He supported youth activities in both 4-H and FFA. He was 4-H leader for Hague Hustlers for 10 years. He was also the County Youth Chairman and member of the Knox County Extension Council. He was awarded the Meritorious Service to 4-H Award for his work in Knox County. He was also very active with Galesburg FFA and FFA Foundation. He was the recipient of the Honorary Illinois FFA State Farmer Degree.
Tolley was a professional in agriculture banking business, assisting local farmers and agricultural businesses for their banking needs for 30 years. Recently, he was presented the 2013 Meritorious Service to Agriculture Award given by the Knox Agri Center. This award is given to a person or persons in Knox County who have made an outstanding contribution to the agricultural industry. He was the 18th recipient to receive this award in the past 33 years.
Howard was a fan of the Galesburg High Silver Streaks and had held a season pass for the past 54 years.
He was a member of First Presbyterian Church in Galesburg for over 50 years and served several times as elder, deacon, trustee and Sunday school teacher.
He belonged to the Rotary Club for over 43 years, serving as president of both Abingdon Rotary Club and Galesburg Rotary Club. He was named a Paul Harris Fellow, received the Clarendon Van Norman Service Award and was recognized as a donor to the Rotary Foundation.
Howard was a very kind, thoughtful and caring man who was always mindful of the needs of others. He enjoyed a host of wonderful friends and was very devoted to his wife, children, grandchildren and great-grandsons.
A celebration of life will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday, July 30, 2013, at the First Presbyterian Church in Galesburg, with the Rev. Mark Wolford and Dr. David Campbell officiating. Visitation will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Monday, July 29, 2013, at Hinchliff-Pearson-West Galesburg Chapel. Burial will be in Knoxville Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to First Presbyterian Church, Rotary Park Project or Hospice Compassus.
Online condolences may be made at www.h-p-w.com.