PEKIN - Paul Louis Wieburg, 92, of Danville, Ill., formerly of Pekin, Ill., passed away on Sunday, June 8, 2014, at the VA Liberty House in Danville.
Paul was born on May 20, 1922, in Pekin, Ill., to Theodore Hudnut and Viola Mae Short Wieburg. On July 4, 1940, he and Ann Marie Bingham eloped and were married in St. Charles, Mo. Ann died on June 25, 1976, in Champaign. Jean Thompson of Danville has been Paul's best friend and constant companion since the early 1990s.
Surviving are his companion, Jean Thompson of Danville; daughter, Cheryl Kennedy of Mahomet and her children, Kurt (Kelly) Kennedy of Rochester and Kim (Shannon) Cheek of Mahomet; daughter-in-law, Camille (Terry) Wieburg of Silverdale, Wash., and her children, Brett (Tawan) Wieburg of Sammamish, Wash., and Trent Wieburg of Seattle, Wash.; and great-grandchildren, Mackenzie and Dominic Wieburg of Sammamish, Dakota and Eli Kennedy and Thea, Drew and Gage Swales of Rochester and Morgan and Raegan Cheek of Mahomet.
In addition to his wife and parents, Paul was predeceased by his brothers, Kenneth, Horace, Richard, Russell and Bruce Wieburg; sister, Theola Wieburg; son, Terry Wieburg; and great-grandson, Donovan Kennedy.
Paul served in the Pacific Theater during World War II. He began his service with the Coast Guard in November of 1943. After boot camp and training, he boarded the LST 785 in New Orleans. He learned ship routine and the job of carpenter's mate while they traveled through the Panama Canal to California and then to Hawaii. The LST went to Saipan, the Philippines, Iwo Jima and Okinawa and participated in the assault and occupation of Iwo Jima and Okinawa in 1945. The ship anchored off of Nagasaki after peace was declared and they saw the devastation of the atomic bomb.
Paul and Ann were both raised in Pekin and moved to Champaign in 1964. Paul worked for Schramm Construction while in Pekin and Kuhne Simmons Construction in Champaign. During this time, he served as foreman or superintendent of construction for the following projects: St. Paul's Evangelical and Reformed Church in Pekin, Sparland Community High School, Pekin Community High School, Burnham Hospital, Carle Clinic, University of Illinois Administration Building and Illinois Residence Hall, the parking decks at Fifth and Daniel and Sixth and John, the Market Street interchange at Monticello, the Cisco overpass and the People's Gas Plant. Paul retired in 1984.
Paul enjoyed golf and he was a fan of the Illini, the Cubs and the Cardinals. He served as a Red Vest Volunteer for Danville Provena Covenant Hospital.
Paul was a life member of the Elks Club and Carpenters Local 44. He was a member of Danville American Legion Post 210, VFW Post 758 and the Disabled War Veterans. Breakfasts and Friday evening meals with their friends at the American Legion Post 210 in Danville were highlights of the week for both Paul and Jean.
Described by his caregivers at the VA Liberty House as fiercely independent, Paul struggled with an active mind in a rapidly deteriorating body. His appreciation for his new "family" grew with each smile and gesture of care and concern he experienced during his time there, and for this we will be eternally grateful.
Visitation in Danville was held at the Liberty House, 129 Heroes Lane (in the Veterans Village on the right at the Iowa Street entry to the VA campus), on Saturday, June 14, from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Memorial services will be held on Friday, June 20, at 11 a.m., with visitation one hour prior, at St. Paul's United Church of Christ, 101 N. Eighth St., Pekin. The Rev. Laurie Hill will officiate. Burial with military honors will be at Lakeside Cemetery in Pekin.
Henderson Funeral Home & Crematory is in charge of the arrangements.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to VA Illiana-Voluntary Services in Danville (note in the memo section "Liberty & Freedom Green House homes) or to St. Paul's United Church of Christ in Pekin.
To send an online condolence to Paul's family, go to www.hendersonfuneralcare.com.