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Richard O. Klemm

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Richard O. Klemm Obituary

CRYSTAL LAKE - Richard Oren "Dick" Klemm, age 77, of Crystal Lake died Monday evening, March 22, 2010, at Centegra Hospital in Woodstock.

Born May 5, 1932 in Chicago to Oren and Edythe (Neilsen) Klemm, he married Nancy Havrilka on April 3, 1993, in Springfield.

As a youth, he achieved the rank of Eagle Scout. Dick was a graduate of Purdue University, and was a veteran of the U.S. Army, serving from 1955 until 1962.

He was a member of the Illinois House of Representatives from 1980 to 1993, and the Illinois Senate from 1993 until his retirement on Feb. 10, 2003. While in the Illinois Senate, he served as chairman of the prestigious Senate Executive Committee, served on the local government, elections and the commerce and industry committees. In addition, he served as co-chairman of the Legislative Printing Unit.

Prior to serving in the House, he was elected to positions in Nunda Township, served as the president of the District 46 Board of Education; was elected to the McHenry County Board and then served as chairman, passing the first developer donation ordinance to preserve farmland and control growth; and was chairman of the first McHenry County Economic Development Committee. He was recognized by countless community service organizations for his civic contributions. On his retirement from the Senate he held the office of assistant Republican leader.

In 1972, he purchased F.W.E. (Food Warming Equipment Company). FWE was founded in the late 1940s by his father. Dick operated FWE as president until selling the company in 2005 to his close friend and business partner, Deron Lichte. He assumed the role of chief executive officer and chairman of the board until his death. Recognized for his innovation, he received five U.S. patents. He oversaw the move of FWE manufacturing from Elk Grove Village to Crystal Lake in 1982, as well as several expansions of the manufacturing facility.

Most important to him was his loving family, including his beloved wife of 17 years, Nancy; four sons, James (Tammy) Skerston of St. Charles, MO, Jack (Lori) Skerston of Springfield, Michael Havrilka of Palo Alto, CA, and David (Sarah) Havrilka of St. Charles, IL; three daughters, Susan (Jeff) Johnston of Las Vegas, Kaye (Kevin) Krimmel of Springfield, Jamie (Dave) Howe of Woodstock; 17 grandchildren; a sister, DeLoris (Rick) Tull of McHenry; a niece, Debbie Hoffman; and a nephew, Charles Gauger.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

The visitation will be from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, March 26, 2010, at Justen Funeral Home and Crematory, 3700 W. Charles J. Miller Road, McHenry, IL 60050. A visitation will also be held in Springfield from 5 to 7 p.m. Saturday, March 27, at Staab Funeral Home, 1109 S. Fifth Street, Springfield, IL 62703.

Private inurnment will be held at Camp Butler Cemetery, Springfield, IL at a later date.

For those wishing to send an expression of condolence, memorials are suggested by his family to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memorials and Honors Program, Memphis, TN 38105-9956.

For information, call Justen Funeral Home and Crematory at 815-385-2400, or for Springfield information, call the Staab Funeral Home at 217-528-6461.

Friends may send an online condolence to the family at www.justenfh.com.


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