VeteranDonald Strode

Donald StrodeDonald R. Strode, 85, of rural Dunlap, died March 27, 2013, at Heritage Health Therapy and Senior Care Center in Chillicothe.

He was born to Marvin and Delma Strode near Vermont, Ill. He married MaryEllen in 1958. She survives.

Also surviving are one son, Doug (and Kari) of Newport Beach, Calif.; one sister, Wandalee Shields of Vermont; two brothers, Bernard (and Janis) of Mexico, Mo., and Max (and Shirley) of Bradford; and two grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by one son, Gregg; two brothers, Eldon and Dayton; and two sisters, Ilene Taylor Burge Purdy and Wilma Worsdell.

He wanted to be a sailor, a policeman and a farmer, and he was able to do all three.

He joined the U.S. Navy out of high school and served aboard the USS Enterprise (CV-6) in 1945-46. He re-enlisted in 1949 and was assigned to the pre-commissioning detail of the USS Salem (CA-139), where he was a plank owner. He served on the Salem until he left military service in 1953.

In 1955, he graduated from Illinois State Police Academy and was assigned to live in Dunlap and work in State Police District 8, until his retirement at the end of 1984 with the rank of Master Sergeant.

He coordinated the area police forces with the Secret Service when presidential trips came to Peoria.

In 1974, he and his wife began their own small farming operation and continued to do so until his health forced him to retire from farming in 2008.

He was a continuous member of American Legion for 65 years, first at American Legion Post #26 in Vermont and at American Legion Post #1078 in Dunlap; USS Salem Association, USS Enterprise Association, U.S. Navy Cruisers Association, Illinois Police Association, Fraternal Order of Police and Peoria County Farm Bureau for over 50 years.

A funeral service was conducted Monday by Father Terry Cassidy, chaplain for Illinois State Police, at Resurrection Mausoleum in Peoria.

Memorials may be made to Central Illinois Chapter, Alzheimer's Association, 606 W. Glen Ave., Peoria, IL 61614.


Published in the Astoria South Fulton Argus on 4/3/2013

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