BARTONVILLE - William E. "Bill" Nelson, 69, of Bartonville passed away at 3:59 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 5, 2014, at UnityPoint Health-Methodist in Peoria.
His first day in Heaven was Jan. 5, 2014.
Born April 10, 1944, in Peoria to Carl and Faye (White) Nelson, he married the love of his life, Patricia Owens on July 11, 1970, in Belleville.
Surviving are his wife, Pat; daughter, Julie (Drew) Howell of Greenwood, Ind.; son, Chad E. (Debbie) Nelson of Wichita Falls, Texas; four grandchildren, Alexis and Anneliese Howell and Joseph and Jessica Nelson; sister, Linda Kizer of Creve Coeur; and one brother, Gerald Nelson of East Peoria.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents and four brothers.
He served in the U.S. Army in Korea during the Vietnam War.
Bill worked for Caterpillar Inc. for 39 years, retiring from the Mapleton foundry in 2002, and was a member of UAW Local 974.
He was a longtime member of McArthur Drive Baptist Church in North Pekin.
He was a devoted husband and father, an avid Chicago Cubs fan, and he enjoyed watching and feeding birds in his backyard. Bill checked the obituary column daily to see if his name was in it. Dad, you can stop looking now.
A memorial celebration will be at 2 p.m. Saturday at McArthur Drive Baptist Church in North Pekin. The Rev. Bobby Barnhill will officiate. Visitation will be two hours prior to the celebration at the church.
Memorial contributions can be made to the McArthur Drive Baptist Church, 109 N. McArthur Drive, North Pekin, IL 61554.
Cremation arrangements have been entrusted to Preston-Hanley Funeral Homes & Crematory in Pekin.
To express condolences online, visit www.preston-hanley.com.