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Charles "Chuck" Behrens, Jr.
(07-15-1935 - 11-06-2018)

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 Charles “Chuck” Behrens, Jr., 83, passed away at JourneyCare in Barrington on November 6, 2018. After a lifetime of working tirelessly for others, he will be laid to rest beside his wife Audrey Warrington Behrens of Hampshire, Illinois, on Saturday, November 10. Chuck’s contributions to his community were known to few but felt by many. That was how he wanted it. In his final days he expressed to family that all he really wanted to be known for in life was being a hard worker and trying his best to be a good person. He was proud of a few things: his family foremost, but also his career at Layne Western, and his joint effort with wife Audrey and neighbors to establish the Gifford Park Association.
Born in Elgin on July 15, 1935, Chuck was the eldest of three children born to Charles F. and Hedwig (Jennie) Behrens. He graduated from Elgin High School in 1953, where he participated in sports – a legacy he passed on to his sons and grandchildren. He always made sure that kids could play ball: he coached many teams, fixed-up old gloves for any kid who needed one, and made sure they had a good ball field to play on – working by himself late into the night to get the field game-ready. Though he was humble about his musical gifts, everyone who heard him sing knew he had a beautiful ringing tenor voice. He took great joy in barbershop music and sang well into his 40s, eventually passing along his love of music to his children and many grandchildren. Chuck started his career with Illinois Hydraulic before moving on to Byron Jackson, and finally to Layne Western which he described as “the best job I ever had.” He worked there for more than 30 years, well into his seventies, selling and servicing municipal pumps. Chuck built a loyal customer base by earning his reputation as a trustworthy plain dealer. He was beloved by the crews who worked with him because they knew he’d be working right alongside them – and that he was good for a round when the job was done. With Elgin’s Gifford Park Association, Chuck was known as “the consummate volunteer.” From cleaning up after the fire in Old Main to installing paths in Gifford Park and planting trees that have since grown proud and tall, until just a few weeks ago he was always willing to lend a hand. He developed a reputation for being the kind of guy who can be relied on to have everything straight and plumb. Neighbors credit him as the inspiration for much of the historic renovation work on homes in the area.
Preceded in death by his parents and siblings Jim and Pat, wife Audrey, and special friend Dorothy Felicetti, Chuck is survived by his children Judi (Danny) Candido, John (Melinda) Behrens and Ben (Debra) Behrens as well as grandchildren Jenny (Chris) Blankenship; Steven (Whitney) Candido; Rebecca, Garrett and Cole Behrens; and great-grandchildren Madelyn, Will and Brady Blankenship. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, November 10, 2018 at 1:00PM at Laird Funeral Home. Visitation will be from 12:00 Noon until the time of service. Burial will be private. Memorials may be given to the Gifford Park Association. Arrangements by Laird Funeral Home. For information, please call 847-741-8800 or www.lairdfamilyfuneralservices.com

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