Mechanic 05

William D. "Bill" Gehlken

June 7, 1942 ~ July 10, 2021 (age 79)

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William D. “Bill” Gehlken, 79, of Illinois City, died Saturday, July 10, 2021 at home surrounded by family.  Cremation rites were accorded.  A memorial visitation will be from 5-7 pm Wednesday, July 14, 2021 at Wheelan-Pressly Funeral Home and Crematory, 201 E. 4th Avenue, Milan.  Memorials may be made in care of the family.

Bill was born in Tarkio, Missouri on June 7, 1942, a son of Joseph and Doris Hodge Gehlken.  He married Lora VanDolah Hall on July 4, 2004 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Bill worked 34 years as a grinder for John Deere, retiring in 1997.  Following retirement, Bill started his own business called Gehlken Construction which he ran from 1997 – 2020.

Bill was a member of Fur Fin N Feather in Illinois City.  He was an avid outdoorsman who enjoyed hunting for Indian artifacts.  He was quite the handyman who could fix or build just about anything.  He enjoyed quilting and loved spending time with his grand and great-grandchildren.

Those left to cherish his memory include his wife, Lora Gehlken, Illinois City; children, Susan (Donavon) Long, Handford, Calif., Joe (Sherri) Gehlken, Reynolds, Heather Hall, Muscatine, Bryan Hall, Muscatine, Ashley (Freddy Burgos) Hall, Edgington, Caitlyn Estes, Milan and Olivia Caulkins, Illinois City; eight grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; and siblings, Larry Gehlken, Joplin, Mo. and Debbie (John) Bradley, St. Joseph, Mo.

He was preceded in death by his parents, brother, Jim Gehlken and infant brother, Leslie Gehlken.

Online condolences, memories and expressions of sympathy may be left for the family at

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Memorial Visitation
July 14, 2021

5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Wheelan-Pressly Funeral Home and Crematory Milan
201 E. 4th Avenue
Milan, IL 61264

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