Rodney Alan Blue, Sr.

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Rodney Alan Blue, Sr., 66, of Galesburg, Illinois, died peacefully at home surrounded by his family on Tuesday, July 2, 2024.

Rodney was born June 20, 1958 in Monmouth, Illinois the son of Mary Ella (Gibson) and Walter Blue. After graduating from Galesburg High School, Rodney went on to earn his BA from Western Illinois University and a master’s degree from the University of the Rockies.

Rodney’s working career spanned many years and many different fields. His early years in high school and just after graduating he worked at Kroger’s Grocery in Galesburg. He went on to work at Hawthorne Irving School in Rock Island, Two Rivers YMCA Youth Coordinator in Moline, Illinois, Galesburg Group Homes, Hy-Vee, Target, and since 2015 the head coach of the men’s and women’s cross-country teams at Carl Sandburg College. After getting off work at CSC he would spend his afternoons working at Lincoln School in Monmouth, Illinois.

Rodney married Sheila Y. Hall and together they had two sons. Rodney later married Cindy Louise (Wingo) Nigoza on March 13, 2005 in Galesburg. Rodney is survived by his wife, Cindy; two sons, Rodney (Jill) Blue, Jr. of Davenport, Iowa and Drexler Blue of Harrison, New Jersey; one stepson, Jason (Traycie) Nigoza of Elgin, Illinois; one stepdaughter, Jami (Ryan) White of St. Charles, Illinois; one guarddaughter, Marissa Wingo of San Fransisco, California; and seven grandchildren, Camille Royal Blue, Reese Nigoza, Zoe Nigoza, Trevor White, Reagan White, Jordan White, and Isaiah Douglass. Rodney is also survived by two brothers, Marc (Debra) Gibson and Stuart Andrews, Jr. both of Galesburg; three sisters, Christa Blue of Galesburg, Latricia Andrews and Allyson Andrews both of Rock Island; numerous nieces and nephews including special nieces and nephew, Caricia Andrews, Allycia Andrews, and Austin Andrews; and his beloved dog, Oscar. Rodney was preceded in death by his father Walter and his mother Mary Andrews.

Rodney’s accolades are too many to mention. However, as a lifelong athlete he has held numerous records at Galesburg High School, still holding the fastest 400 relay split in school history, was inducted into the GHS Athletic Hall of fame in 2008, and he was recognized nationally as a master’s runner. He has been recognized numerous times throughout the years as a coach and earning Region 4 Division II NJCAA Coach of the year five times. A man with a big smile, a bigger heart and passion for running, Rodney has impacted the lives of so many in the Galesburg and surrounding areas during his 30 plus years of coaching. He leaves a lasting legacy that will be long remembered.

Visitation will be 3:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Friday, July 12, 2024 at Watson Thomas Funeral Home and Crematory, Galesburg, with the family present from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Funeral services will be 1:00 p.m. Saturday, July 13, 2024 at the funeral home. Cremation will be accorded following services. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the family for a scholarship fund being established in Rodney’s memory. Online expressions of sympathy may be sent to the family at www.watsonthomas.com.

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