CHENOA (Pantagraph)— Owen B. Streeper, 89, Chenoa, passed away at 12:53 p.m. Wednesday (Feb. 13, 2013) at his residence.
His funeral will be at 10 a.m. Monday at Chenoa Presbyterian Church, Chenoa, with Chip Finck officiating. Burial will follow in Evergreen Memorial Cemetery, Bloomington, where full military honors will be conducted.
A visitation will be from 2 to 6 p.m. Sunday at Duffy-Pils Memorial Home, Chenoa. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that memorials be directed to the Chenoa Fire Department.
O.B. was born Aug. 7, 1923, in Normal, the son of Bert Condon and Bess Grove Streeper. He married Esther M. Brown on Jan. 29, 1943, in Heyworth. She passed away on July 1, 1995. Also preceding him in death were his parents; two brothers, Jack Streeper and Bert Condon Streeper; and granddaughter, Melissa Leggett Belcher in 2007.
Survivors include one son, Owen B. (Helen) Streeper II, Bloomington; one daughter, Linda (Larry) Leggett, Chenoa; grandchildren, Michele (Todd) Scholl, Bradley (Jonya) Streeper, Denise (James) Carlson, Susie (Jarrett) Brown and Beth Leggett; grandson-in-law, Esta Belcher; 11 great-grandchildren; and special friend, Eleanor Shelton, Columbia, Mo.
Mr. Streeper served our country in the 15th Air Corps, 461st bomb group during World War II as a ball gunner on a B-24. On May 27, 1944, his plane was shot down over southern France and he was missing in action for 87 days; during that time he fought with the French Underground. For injuries sustained during this time, he was the recipient of a Purple Heart and Silver Star.
He founded the McLean County Rescue Squad and served as chief from 1968 to 2005.
In 1970 he started Special Service Inc., along with his son, designing and manufacturing rescue equipment. He also started Emergency Squad Training Institute where he, along with his son, Owen, taught rescue squads throughout the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico and Columbia the techniques for auto extrication and aerial rescue.
In his earlier years after returning from the war, he worked as a tool-and-die maker for Williams O-Matic. He went on to become a journeyman plumber and worked as a superintendent for various plumbing contractors.
He was a member of the Plumbers Local 99, Veterans of Foreign Wars, active member of Chenoa Fire Department, Guns Save Life Gun Club, Champaign, National Rifle Association, Pontiac Gun Club and Air Force Escape and Evasion Society.
The family would like to offer a special thank you to the nurses from Advocate BroMenn Home Healthcare.
Online condolences and a guest registry are available at www.duffypilsmemorialhome.com.