March 8, 1925 — April 7, 2013
Virgil W. Purkel, 88, of Pekin, formerly of Bartonville, passed away at 8 a.m. on Sunday, April 7, 2013, at the OSF Richard L. Owens Hospice Home in Peoria.
Funeral services will be at noon on Saturday, April 13, 2013, at Laramie Street Baptist Church in Peoria, with Pastor Christopher Bigger officiating. Visitation will be from 5 to 7 p.m. on Friday, April 12, 2013, also at the church. Interment will be at Lutheran Cemetery in Peoria.
Virgil was born on March 8, 1925 in Cairo, a son of Walter and Minnie (Sullivan) Purkel. He married Dorothy Polk in Cairo on July 1, 1944. She preceded him in death on May 1, 1999. He was also preceded in death by his parents; one grandson; one granddaughter; and his sister, Shirley Satterwhite Harris. He married Shirley M. (Messersmith) Durst on June 16, 2001 at Laramie Street Baptist Church. She survives.
He is also survived by his children, Donna Purkel, Michael (Joan) Purkel, Sandy Lehman and Darryl (Cheryl) Purkel, all of Bartonville, and Phillip (Debbie) Purkel of Bellevue; stepchildren, Mark Durst of Arizona, Venisa Brown of Groveland and Sonia Hess and Sam Durst of Pekin; nine grandchildren; nine step grandchildren; six great grandchildren; twelve step great grandchildren; and brother, Bill (Gladys) Purkel of Royal Oak, MI.
Virgil retired in 1982 as a machinist with Caterpillar, at their East Peoria plant, after thirty-three years of service. After retirement, he served as the Chief of Bartonville Police Department Auxiliary for twenty-three years.
He was a fifty-five year member, and helped construct the current facility, of Laramie Street Baptist Church, before transferring his membership to the First Baptist Church of Marquette Heights last year. He loved Dart Ball, music, dancing, gardening and collecting classic model cars.
Memorial contributions may be made in Virgil’s memory to Laramie Street Baptist Church in Peoria or to the First Baptist Church of Marquette Heights.
Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Clary Funeral Home, 3004 West Lake Avenue, in Peoria.
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