James Moorehead

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ROCHELLE — James T. Moorehead, 100, passed away peacefully Monday, Jan. 25, 2021 at Franklin Grove Living and Rehabilitation Center in Franklin Grove. Jim was born on Sept. 11, 1920 to James Irvin and Gertrude (Town) Moorehead in Paw Paw. On Jan. 24, 1940, he married Marjorie “Marnie” White in Clinton, Iowa. Three days shy of their 79th wedding anniversary, his beloved wife passed on Jan. 21, 2019.  

Jim worked at Woodward Governor in Rockford making diesel engines for submarines used in the war. After a series of events, Jim felt the need to enlist and he proudly served with the United States Navy during WWII from 1942 - 1944. He was assigned as a diesel mechanic to the submarine, U.S.S. Bluefish S.S. 222. Following his return from the war, he returned to Paw Paw and had numerous jobs including journeyman carpenter, brakeman on the railroad, owned his own can milk route delivering milk to Costello’s Creamery in Mendota, type setter in Rochelle at the newspaper, managing the Rochelle News Agency and then working at Del Monte, retiring in 1983. His final and most favorite job was working at the Unger-Horner Funeral Home, retiring after 40 years at the age of 90.  

Jim was a member of the Rochelle United Methodist Church and Kiwanis Golden K, VFW, American Legion and Ancient Free & Accepted Masons of Illinois. He served on the Flagg Township Historical Society for many years and the Flagg-Rochelle Park District board for 22 years.

For many years, Jim and Marnie enjoyed their trips all around the U.S. from Maine south, across the south and then north to Washington State encircling the U.S. with their fifth wheel. Jim was invited to join Honor Flights for veterans in both 2010 and 2011. For his 91st birthday celebration, he decided to embark on yet another adventure. . .skydiving. In Jim’s own words, “I have had a good life and a good family and I have enjoyed it all!”
Jim is survived by his two children, James “Butch” (Cindy) Moorehead of Rock Falls, and Cherrie Schultz of St. Louis, Missouri; eight grandchildren, Kris (Allan) Kilian, Korin (Karl) Dankl, James T. Moorehead, Timothy (Wendy) Moorehead, Lory Moore, Lonna (Dave) Lira, Kellie (Denny) Schroeder and Troy Slusser; 24 great-grandchildren; and five great-great-grandchildren.

In addition to his parents and wife, Jim was predeceased by one great-grandson, John Paul Villegas; one great-great-grandson, Maddox Rodriguez; two brothers, Richard Moorehead and Roger Moorehead; and one sister, Mickey Prentice.

There will be a graveside service at 1:30 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 8 at Lawnridge Cemetery in Rochelle with Pastor Rob Hamilton officiating. The burial will be for the family only, with a celebration of life at a later date due to the Covid virus. Memorials may be made in Jim’s memory to The Rochelle United Methodist Church.  

Visit www.ungerhorner.com to sign the online guest book.