Eleanor C. Thomas, 93, East Moline, was reunited on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2012, with her husband of 72 years, Vernon F. Thomas, who passed away on Nov. 1, 2012. She passed away at Heartland Health Care, Alzheimer's Unit, Moline. Funeral services are 11 a.m. Thursday at St. Anne Catholic Church, East Moline. Entombment is in St. Mary's Mausoleum. Visitation is 4-6 p.m. Wednesday at Van Hoe Funeral Home Ltd., East Moline, where a rosary will be recited at 3:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. Anne Church. Eleanor was born on April 16, 1919, in Hoopeston, the daughter of John and Floy (Hickman) Petry. She attended business school in Kankakee, where she met her future husband. They were married April 20, 1940, in Bloomington, where she was working for State Farm Insurance Co. After raising their three children, she worked as the parish secretary at St. Anne Catholic Church, East Moline, where she and her husband had been active in many social and voluntary organizations. Eleanor had played as a pianist for the drama department of Alleman High School. Mrs. Thomas had belonged to the St. Anne's sewing club and was a Girl Scout leader for many years. Survivors include her children, Jim (Sandra) Thomas, East Moline, Carolyn Grenier, Olney, Md., and Mary (Don) Lulow, East Moline; eight grandchildren; and 17 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents; husband; brother, Charles Petry; and sister, Phyllis Cherry. Online condolences may be left for the family at www.vanhoe.com.
Today is Wednesday, March 12, the 71st day of 2014. There are 294 days left in the year. 1864 -- 150 years ago: Soldiers from the barracks on the Arsenal manage to elude the vigilance of the guard nearly every day and come to town armed. In the hands of excited and perhaps intoxicated men, these weapons are dangerous. 1889 -- 125 years ago: Manufacturing's merchants and professional men of Moline were petitioning the Western Union Telegraph company to establish a telegraph office in the business area of the city. 1914 -- 100 years ago: Three Rock Island students, the Misses Eleanor Cleaveland, Dorothy McCabe and Ruth West, escaped injury when fire destroyed College Hall at Wellesley College in Massachusetts. 1939 -- 75 years ago: The Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War gave a party for William H. Stremmel, the only survivor of John Buford Post 243, GAR. 1964 -- 50 years ago: The East Moline Grade School Board of Education last night granted salary increases totaling about $47,000 to teachers and staff members. 1989 -- 25 years ago: Five champion spellers from the Rock Island/Milan School district were selected after competition this week at Modern Woodmen of America. Winners are Sarah Cottay, Christopher Gilbrich, Jared Vogele, Kedric Roper and Kenny Stevenson.