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Harold Wadsworth Flinn, Jr., 96,
of Elmwood passed peacefully at 4:30 A.M. Sunday, January 19, 2020 at Country Comfort
Retirement Home in Elmwood.
was born on December 1, 1923 in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Harold W. Flinn,
Sr., and Claire (Pfirfenschneider) Flinn. He graduated from Maine Township High
School where he competed in the State Finals in Cross Country.
high school, Harold enrolled in a radio communications school where he was
selected by and served in the United States Army 23rd Headquarters Special
Troops (aka, Ghost Army) during World War II. During his military training, Harold met Ruth Ann
Platt and they were joined in Holy Matrimony on May 16, 1944 in Park Ridge, Illinois.
was very proud of his role in WWII and kept true to the secrecy of the unit
until its declassification in the 1990s. He always looked forward to the
regiments many reunions.
the war, Harold and Ruthann lived in Chicago where he worked for Bell
Telephone. In the late 1940s, Harold and Ruth Ann moved to rural Maquon where
he found a new livelihood in agriculture.
was a member of Grace Anglican Church in Galesburg and served on the Church’s
Vestry and building committee. Harold was Commander of the Maquon American
Legion, Chairman of the Maquon Homecoming, and served as Boy Scout Master to
the Maquon community. He was a member of the Lincolnland Coachmen Camping Club,
a Master Gardener, and alongside Ruth Ann, taught gardening classes, and served
as a Knox County 4H judge.
are three sons, Douglas (Tamara) Flinn of Centerburg, Ohio, Harold Edward
(Claire) Flinn of Bettendorf, Iowa, and Steven (Susan) Flinn of Elmwood; two
daughters, Patricia (Charles) Brown of Galesburg, and Mary (Amo) Peterson of
Naperville; 13 grandchildren; and 18 great-grandchildren. On September 14, 2017
he lost Ruth Ann. He was also preceded in death by his parents; his sister,
Florence; and foster son, David Hendrickson of St. Louis, Missouri.
his long life, Harold knew how to enjoy life. Whether it was gallivanting
through the neighborhoods on the north side of Chicago and visiting Wrigley
Field in the 1930s, to taking long cross-country camping vacations with his
family, or being at the “lake” with the extended family on nearly
every Sunday afternoon throughout the summer; Dad balanced work and play.
embraced new technology, education, and creativity. And once when a Ford or
Chevy automobile would have been appropriate, dad purchased a Fiat convertible.
Later in his life, Harold and Ruth Ann took up bicycling and despite being an
amputee, they would often ride upwards of 30 miles. He and Ruth Ann lived by
the Golden Rule and instilled the values of family, integrity, and faith in his
will be held on Friday, January 24, 2020 from 4:00 P.M. to 7:00 P.M. at the
Hurd-Hendricks Funeral Home & Crematory in Knoxville, Illinois. A graveside service will be held on Saturday,
January 25, 2020 at 11:00 A.M. at the Maquon Cemetery in Maquon, Illinois, Rev.
Fr. Andy Ainley officiating. Military
rites will be conducted by the Elmwood American Legion Post #638. Memorial contributions may be made to the
Grace Anglican Church of Galesburg or to Veterans Helping Veterans. Online condolences and expressions of
sympathy may be made through www.hurd-hendricksfuneralhome.com.