William "Tom" Gilleland Jr.

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COTTAGE HILLS — William "Tom" Gilleland Jr., 67, went to be with the Lord on Friday, Feb. 21, 2014, at DePaul Hospital in St. Louis.

He was born on Nov. 20, 1946, in Wood River, the son of the late William and Harriet (Hayes) Gilleland Sr.

He married Debra L. (Tribble) on Feb. 29, 2008, in Edwardsville. She survives.

Tom served his country for three years in the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam War. He worked for the Norfolk Southern Railroad repairing track for 10 years, retiring in 1984. He was then employed at DePaul Hospital in the maintenance department. He was a member of Forest Homes First Southern Baptist Church in Cottage Hills and Cottage Hills VFW Post 7678 where he served as Commander. He enjoyed fishing, baseball, football, watching wrestling, and most of all, spending time with family and friends.

He is survived by his three children and their spouses, Vicki and Robert Heden of Oregon, Brandy and Matt Kotzamanis of Bethalto and David and Alyssa Gilleland of Rosewood Heights; three grandchildren, Lacy and John Kotzamanis, and Ember Heden; one sister, Ruth Ellen Yanczer of White Hall, Mo. He is also survived by several nieces, nephews, brother-in-law, sisters-in-law, cousins, and friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents, one brother, Ronald "Modoc" Gilleland, and by his paternal grandmother who raised him, Allie Clark.

Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014, at Elias, Kallal and Schaaf Funeral Home in Bethalto.

Funeral services will be held at 9:30 a.m. Friday, Feb. 28, at Forest Homes First Southern Baptist Church in Cottage Hills with Pastor Tom Fea officiating.

Burial will follow at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery in St. Louis, with full military rites being conducted.

Memorials may be made Forest Homes First Southern Baptist Church.

Online condolence and guestbook may be found at

Funeral Home
Elias, Kallal & Schaaf Funeral Homes & Crematory
727 E Bethalto Blvd Bethalto, IL 62010
(618) 377-4000
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Published in The Telegraph from Feb. 24 to Feb. 25, 2014
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