Butler Funeral Home & Cremation Tribute Center
900 S. Sixth St.
Springfield, IL

Carl W. Volkmann

SPRINGFIELD, IL - Carl W. Volkmann, 79, died Friday, Oct. 11, 2013, at his home at the end of a 15-year struggle with cancer.

Carl was born Oct. 23, 1933, in Streator, Ill., the son of Rev. William C. and Grace Bentzin Volkmann. He married Roberta Bock in 1957 in Dubuque, Iowa.

Carl received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Wartburg College in 1955, his Master of Divinity degree from Wartburg Seminary in 1959, and his Master of Library Science degree from the University of Illinois in 1969.

Employed by Tri-City High School in Buffalo from 1960-1969 as a teacher and librarian, Carl joined the staff of Lincoln Library in 1970 as the Young Adult Librarian. He was named Assistant Director in 1972, and was appointed Library Director in 1981. During his professional career and after his retirement in 1993, he served on numerous boards and commissions including the Senior Citizens Commission, the Lincoln Memorial Garden Foundation, the Dana-Thomas House Foundation, the Sangamon County Historical Society, Opera Theatre of Springfield, the Illinois Library Association, the Community Volunteer Center, and the Lincoln Library Foundation.

Carl was named a 2004 recipient of the Illinois Humanities Council's Studs Terkel Humanities Service Award for his forty years of service as an educator, librarian, and community volunteer in Springfield. The Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign created the Carl Volkmann Scholarship Fund in 2010 to support students pursuing a professional career in public librarianship. He received a Wartburg College Alumni Citation in 2012 for his successful career in librarianship and his many years of serving as a community and professional volunteer.

In recent years, Carl wrote several books including Journeys Near The End: A Cancer Fighter's Journal; Springfield's Sculptures, Monuments, and Plaques that he co-authored with his wife, Roberta; and Lincoln in Sculpture, a compilation of Lincoln sculpture stories that first appeared in Illinois Heritage, the magazine of the Illinois State Historical Society.

He was a member of the Breakfast Optimist Club, Grace Lutheran Church, the Illinois Symphony Chorus, the Prairie Archives Breakfast Group, and WAMBEG.

He is survived by his wife, Roberta; daughter, Joan (husband, John Jones) Volkmann of Urbana, Ill.; son, Curt (wife, Sue) Volkmann of Lake Forest, Ill.; sister, Lois Jelneck of Ann Arbor, Mich.; brother, Jack (wife, Margaret) Volkmann of Lemon Grove, Calif.; sister, Marti (husband, Will) Everts of Janesville, Wis.; granddaughters, Abbie and Anna Volkmann of Lake Forest, Ill.; and several nieces, nephews and cousins.

Private family burial was held at Oak Ridge Cemetery.

Memorial Gathering: Family will receive friends from 9:00-10:45 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 19, 2013, in the Fellowship Hall of Grace Lutheran Church, 714 E. Capitol Ave., Springfield.

Memorial Ceremony: 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 19, 2013, at Grace Lutheran Church, with Rev. Thomas B. Christell, Jr. officiating. Following the memorial ceremony a luncheon will be served at Grace Lutheran Church.

Memorials may be made to the Carl Volkmann Scholarship Fund, c/o U of I Foundation, 1305 W. Green St., Urbana, IL 61801, the International Health and Development Network, P.O. Box 7488, Springfield, IL 62791 or Grace Lutheran Trust, 714 E. Capitol St., Springfield, IL 62701.

The family of Carl W. Volkmann is being served by Kirlin-Egan & Butler Funeral Home, 900 S. 6th St., Springfield. Please visit to offer your condolences.

Published by The State Journal-Register on Oct. 17, 2013.
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17 Entries
Roberta and family: You have my complete sympathy at your loss. Carl and I go back to the early days of the Breakfast Optimist Club, and later Lincoln Library, and I've missed his company of late as his health deteriorated. But he fought his disease like a trouper, living long past when anyone would have predicted those many years ago, when his symptoms first surfaced.
Dick McLane
October 23, 2013
To the Volkmann Family,
I am sorry for your loss, Carl was quite the gentleman to work with, no matter what the project. Anyone would have been blessed to know him over these many years. You have my prayers.
Veronica Robison
October 18, 2013
Roberta & Family:
May the passing of the days heal loniness and pain,
'Til nothing but warm memories of love and joy remain.
My Sincere Sympathy
Eleanor J. Sakris
Springfield, IL.
October 18, 2013
Mrs. Volkmann you are in our thoughts. I had the pleasure to meet you and your husband when I purchased your lovely home in 1997. We are still in the house and love it as much today as we did the 1st day we saw it. Rest in Peace Mr. Volkmann. Pieretta Smith Patterson
October 18, 2013
We didn't know Carl very well personally, but we have heard so much about him through our mutual friends. He certainly has left a wonderful legacy for all of us.
Roberta, you and your family have our heartfelt sympathy.
Bud & Judy Denton
October 18, 2013
My sympathy to Carl's family.
Julie Wullner
October 18, 2013
We were very sad to hear of Carl's passing, and send our deep sympathies to his family.
Jerry & Doranne Jacobson
October 17, 2013
To the VOLKMANN FAMILY, our thoughts and prayers to you. He was a great boss to our mother CAROL WINSTON JONES.
Valerie M. Winston Scott
October 17, 2013
Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family
Gary Sullivan and Family
October 17, 2013
I am sorry to hear of Mr. Volkman's passing.He was one of my favorite teachers at Tri-City and had a great influence on my life.

Ed (Van) Musselman
Blackfoot, Idaho
October 17, 2013
Mr. Volkmann was one of my American History Teachers and Librarian at Tri-City. He will always be remembered as one of my best teachers. He was always kind and willing to explains things to us. He will be missed.
You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.
Jane Thompson Bradley
October 17, 2013
Roberta - I have such fond memories of meeting you two. Carl was a gentle soul who made the world a better place. I'm very sorry for your loss.
Sharon Whalen
October 17, 2013
Roberta & Family,
My very best memories of that little school in Buffalo involve Karl and you, Roberta; you were both influential in my teen years. Karl was a strong, kind gentleman who I respected and loved. I am so grateful for the time he spent with me, both at Tri-City and later at the Lincoln Library. I'm so sorry for your loss but hope knowing that he touched so many lives and is so well regarded will combine with your own memories to comfort you. God bless you with comfort and peace. Donna
Donna Matthews
October 17, 2013
God bless Carl and his surviving wife and family. He was a testimony to the human spirit, never giving in and always pushing forward. I was proud to know him.
Mark Kuhnke MD FACS
October 17, 2013
Roberta and Family----Kind, considerate, thoughtful. A soft but strong voice. A man who mattered in the community and to his wide circle of friends. We will miss him too. John and Jeannie Alexander, Virden, IL
October 17, 2013
My Thoughts & Prayer's Are With The Family Of Mr. Volkmann. I Had The Opportunity Of Working At The Library, When Mr. Volkmann Was The Director He Truly Had A Passion For His Position & Cared Much For His Staff, He Took The Time To Get To Know His Staff & He Will Be Missed.

With Sympathy
Nicole Banks-Harper
Nicole Banks
October 17, 2013
My thoughts and prayers are with the family. Tri-City class of '69. CIHOC---2005-2006
Vicki Files-Saulsbery
October 17, 2013
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