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Vernon Thomas Wilson

April 27, 1926 ~ March 9, 2018 (age 91)

Vernon Thomas Wilson, 91, of Orion, died Friday, March 9, 2018, at UnityPoint Health - Trinity Rock Island. 

Funeral services will be held at 11am Tuesday, March 13, 2018 at Kirk, Huggins, and Esterdahl Funeral Home, 1301-4th Street Orion, IL.  Visitation will be from 5-7 pm, Monday, March 12, 2018, at Kirk, Huggins and Esterdahl Funeral Home, Orion.  Burial will be 2pm, Tuesday, March 13, 2018 at Bishop Hill Cemetery, Bishop Hill, IL, where military honors will be conducted by the Orion American Legion. Memorials may be made to Andover Lutheran Church, or University of Iowa Children’s Hospital, Iowa City, Iowa.

Vernon was born on April 27, 1926, in rural New Windsor, IL, the son of Fred and Inez Stevenson Wilson.  He married Verla Johnson in Galesburg, IL, in 1949; she preceded him in death in June 1990.  He later married Ila (Poppy) Nelson on July 14, 1991 in Andover, IL.  Vernon worked in mechanical engineering at John Deere Davenport Works for over 34 years, retiring in 1982.

Vernon was a veteran, having proudly served in the United States Army in the tank division during the Korean war.  He was a member of Augustana Lutheran Church in Andover, and a member and past commander of the Andover American Legion Post 465.  Vernon was a Mason of the Scottish Rite and Coordinate Bodies Valley of Moline, and member of the Doric Lodge 319 AF + AM, Moline.  Vernon also had an extensive musical career, playing bass, piano, and violin.  He performed in various bands, including the Pleasant Valley Boys, Buddies of the Airlanes with WHBF, the Wes Holly Group with WOC, and the Mohassan Grotto Band.  After retiring, Vernon enjoyed going to Arizona during the colder months, spending 24 winters with his wife there.

Survivors include his wife, Ila; three step children, Doug (Terri) Nelson, Lynn Center, Brian (Becky) Nelson, Cambridge, Cindi Sparkman, Orion; seven grandchildren; Neal (Lori) Nelson, Nicole (Marty) Ruthaivilavan, Breanna (Wade) McLaughlin, Lance Nelson, Natalie Nelson, Chad Sparkman, and Ethan Sparkman; and six great grandchildren.  Sister-in-law; Joanne Wilson, East Moline, IL. nephew, Ronald (Jackie) Wilson, Silvis; nieces, Pam (Dick) Hunt, Reynolds and Jill (Craig) Johansen, East Moline, IL, and their families. 

He was preceded in death by his wife, Verla; parents; and three brothers, Henry, Harry, and Ronald.

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