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Rhene Evans Cassell
(08-02-1923 - 05-25-2017)

 On Thursday, May 25th as the sun rose, Rhene Evans Cassell awoke, giving thanks for another day. Though his body had become frail and tired, his mind was still sharp and his spirit grateful. He was ready to leave this earth when the Lord called him to his eternal home. Rhene passed away peacefully at the age of 93 at 3:30 pm to join his beloved wife, son and daughter.
Rhene was born August 2, 1923, in Woodbine, IL, the son of Joseph and Marian Lloyd Cassell. An Elgin resident since 1933, he graduated from Elgin High School in 1942, joined the U.S. Army 3rd Infantry Regiment in October of 1943, and then married the love of his life, Ruth Edana Hoffman on October 22, 1944. In March 1945, he left for France/Germany to serve in WWII.
After the war he attended Seattle Pacific College. He went on to graduate from: Wessington Springs College, South Dakota, with an Associate of Arts in 1948; Northern Illinois State Teachers College (aka NIU), DeKalb, with a Bachelor of Science in Education in 1950, and also a Master of Science in Education in 1954. He retired in 1981 after serving the children of School District U-46 for 31 years as a school teacher and Director of Physical Education & Safety. He was an active member of the Elgin Free Methodist Church for many years. For the past 20 years he has attended the First Baptist Church of Elgin.
Rhene was a man of integrity and loyalty, grounded by his faith in God. Some of his proudest moments involved those spent with family and friends. He enjoyed sports (Just in time, Cubs!), playing his electric guitar, driving until he was 93, stained glass & wood working, chocolate malts, and Fannie May candy.
Surviving are his daughters, Tina (John) Birkholz of Elgin and Mary Jo (Peter) Guisler of Elgin; daughter-in-law, Patricia Cassell of Asheboro, North Carolina; grandchildren, Robert (Kelly) Cassell, Tricia (Derek) Beane, Mike and Brian Birkholz, Andrew Guisler and Lauren (Jeremy) Quinones; great-grandchildren, Jordan, Jacob and Lyndsey Cassell; sister, Mary Grace Messmore; special friend, Muriel Dickerson; wonderful caregiver, George Punzalan.
He was preceded in death by his parents; dear wife of 59 years, Ruth; infant daughter, Debra Cassell; and son, Dennis Cassell.
Visitation will be Sunday, June 4, 4-6 pm at the First Baptist Church of Elgin, 1735 West Highland Ave. A memorial service will be held at the church at 11 am, Monday, June 5, with visitation at 10 am until time of the service.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the First Baptist Church of Elgin. Laird Funeral Home, Elgin is in care of arrangements. 847-741-8800 or www.lairdfamilyfuneralservices.com

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