John Henry Schutte, age 83, passed away at St. Anthony's Hospital in Effingham on Sunday, March 22. He was born on the family farm northwest of Sigel, IL on Aug 2,1936. He was the youngest of five children, and the only son, born to Harry and Eva Schutte. He always joked that he had never gotten very far in life...as he was born on the south side of the big old barn located in the middle of the family farm, and then moved to the north side of that same barn into a new brick house, after marrying Dana Lee Dezarne in 1966. Together John and Dana raised three children: Denise Lee (deceased 1996), Brett John (deceased 2009), and Valerie Anne, who currently resides in Arizona. His loving wife of over 46 years, Dana, passed away in 2012. John also has a sister Dolores Wagner who lives in Chicago.
John loved to tell stories about the good 'ole days growing up on the farm and how proud he was of being a faithful steward of the land. He was also known to reminisce, almost with a sense of pride, about all the trouble he caused in his youth. According to some of his stories, his '57 Ford with a police interceptor engine was notoriously well-known by all the local police officers back in the day. During his time in the Army, he joined the 101st Airborne Paratrooper Division on a dare, and ended up making numerous jumps with his trusty bazooka rocket launcher looped around his waist. To celebrate his 80th birthday, and wanting to relive those glory days, he convinced his daughter Valerie to go skydiving.
He enjoyed watching old westerns on TV, and ended up watching many of the same ones countless times. He loved playing cards with old friends and always greeted everyone with a big smile. No one was a stranger to John for long. He always looked forward to going mushroom hunting in the spring, and almost always ended up having to run out some unlucky soul who had "wandered" into his woods in search of those elusive morels. John was proud to be a founding member of the local deer camp, where he always enjoyed the camaraderie of numerous friends and neighbors.
John was a lifelong parishioner of Sigel St Michael Catholic Church and always relied on his deep faith in God to get him through many hard times. He will be remembered as a longtime friend to many and someone who was always willing to help anyone in need.
Memorials are suggested to the St. Michael School or the American Cancer Association.
Graveside Services will be held at 11:00 AM, Thursday, March 26, 2020 at St. Michael Cemetery in Sigel with Rev. Fr Sunder Ery officiating. Military Services will be conducted by the Neoga American Legion. Visitation will be held Wednesday March 25, 2020 from 6:00 to 8:00 PM at the Swengel - O’Dell Funeral Home in Neoga.
Online condolences may be expressed at swengel-odell.com
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