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Gordon O. Foss

Mr. Gordon O. Foss, 96, of Morris, passed away peacefully early Monday morning, Oct. 1, 2012, at Walnut Grove Health Care Center with his loving wife and family by his side.

Born Dec. 26, 1915, at the home of his parents in Nettle Creek Township, Grundy County, Gordon was the son of Hans and Bertha (Askeland) Foss. He attended Dix school in Nettle Creek Township and graduated from Morris High School.

Gordon married the love of his life, Laura Mae Phillips, on Sept. 6, 1941, in the First Baptist Church in Morris.

With his wife, they resided for more than 50 years on her father Otis Phillips' farm in Wauponsee Township, where they operated a dairy and grain farm.

Gordon was a civic leader in the community and was instrumental in the creation of the Illinois Valley Sheltered workshop that took shape in the basement of the old Firs. Baptist Church. Today, it is now known  as Illinois Valley Industries.

He was a longtime member of the Grundy County Farm Bureau and served on its Board of Directors. He was a member of the Pure Milk Association and was a very active member of the First Baptist Church, where he served as a Sunday school teacher, along with being a member of the board of trustees and deacons.

He enjoyed fishing and traveling with his wife in their motorhomes, which saw their travels take them to all 50 states in the United States. He treasured the time that was spent telling and trading stories and tales with his many friends and family.

Gordon had a great sense of humor and a wonderful way of getting his point across. He was a true gentleman.

Survivors include his loving wife of more than 71 years, Laura Mae; their four children, Nancy Foss and Doug (Yvonne) Foss of Morris, Dennis (Mary Ann Varland) Foss of Hannibal, Mo., and Anita Chapple of Carmel Valley, Calif.; 10 grandchildren,seven great-grandchildren; one great-great-granddaughter; sister-in-law, Norma Mathes of Marseilles; along with many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, four sisters, and three brothers.

The family will receive friends from 9:30 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 6, 2012, until the time of funeral services at 11 a.m. at the First Baptist Church, 1650 W. U.S. 6, Morris. Rev. Steve Larson will officiate.

Interment will follow at Sample Cemetery.

Serving as honorary pallbearers will be his granddaughters, Cassie and Tanya Chapple, Anita Jo Pavlik, Dee Anne Reimers, Kari Foss Lowery and Julie Penn.

Serving as his pallbearers will be his grandsons and great grandsons, Russell, Erik, Brian, Stephen and Christopher Foss and Jered Chapple

Preferred form of remembrance would be memorial gifts in Gordon’s memory directed to the First Baptist Church Building Fund.

Condolences to the family can be extended online at

U.C. Davis & Sons Funeral Home Ltd., 301 W. Washington St., Morris, is in charge of arrangments. For more information, call (815) 942-0084.

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