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Official Obituary of

Gayle "Bernie" V. Kirkman

July 21, 1954 ~ November 8, 2023 (age 69) 69 Years Old

Gayle "Bernie" Kirkman Obituary

Gayle Vernon (Bernie) Kirkman, 69, of Murdock passed away on Wednesday, November 8, 2023 at his home.

Bernie was born on July 21, 1954 in Monticello, IL to William and Marjorie (Eckelberry) Kirkman.

He is survived by five children: Tammy (Everett) Cooper of Pekin, Terry Hays of Greenup, Leanna Kirkman of Decatur, Wes (Brittany) Hays of Toledo, and Jerry (Alisha) Kirkman of Ashmore; 10 grandchildren: Brevin Fortier, Aspen Fortier, Keesha Kirkman, Jessica Nevius, Kresta Nevius, Tony Hays, Myles Hays, Marc Hays, Robert Kirkman, and Bella Kirkman; 3 great-grandchildren; 1 brother, Tom (Pam) Kirkman; 4 sisters in-law: Cindy, Margie, Francie and Crystal; numerous cousins, nieces, and nephews; and 5 furry companions: Bonnie, PJ, Curly, Peanut, and Bruno.

Bernie was preceded in death by his parents, William and Marjorie Kirkman and step-mother Rosalie Kirkman; and 9 siblings: Carl, Patricia, Melvin, Marty, Don, Jerry, Larry, Joe, and Randy.

Bernie was a cherished Dad and Papa. He was a blessing to all, but to his family, he was everything. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and camping but mostly spending time with his family. When fishing with Robert and Bella, it was known that Papa and Robert’s “biggest fish” competition was usually won by Robert. His past commitments and dedication to the Tuscola Moose Lodge #729 accorded him status of Lifetime Member. Bernie would help anyone he could, in any way and loved making people laugh. His kind heart and unconditional love will be forever cherished.

Bernie worked at Kelsey’s Furniture Company in Tuscola, IL for most of his adult life.

A visitation will be held from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. on Saturday, December 2, 2023 at Joines Funeral Home in Villa Grove. A Celebration of Life gathering, along with the placing of the headstone at the Villa Grove Cemetery with a dinner to follow, will be held at a later date. Details to be determined and will be provided.

Cremation rites have been accorded. Joines Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.

Memorial donations may be made to the Tuscola Moose Lodge #729 or the Douglas County Animal Shelter.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Gayle "Bernie" V. Kirkman, please visit our floral store.

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December 2, 2023

10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Joines Funeral Home
1375 IL-130
Villa Grove, IL 61956


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