Obituaries for Tuesday April 21st

William “Bill” Claude Hanks, 75, of Iowa City and formerly New London, died Friday, April 17, 2020 at Journey Senior Living of Ankeny. He was born in Burlington August 19, 1944 to Clarence and Helen Young Hanks. He spent his school years on the Hanks farm northeast of New London. Bill enjoyed helping on the farm and took part in both FFA and Des Moines County 4-H. He showed Holstein dairy cows from the family farm for many years at the Des Moines County Fair even winning Grand Champion one year. He also loved dogs all throughout his life.
Bill enjoyed sports such as football, basketball and bowling, which was his favorite to participate in. He was manager for the New London football team in Junior High, played trumpet in band, was in a class play, and his senior year was recognized by Dova Tompkins for his work helping in the library. He graduated from New London High School in 1963 and attended New London United Methodist Church.
After high school Bill did a short stint in the Navy and also worked at the IAAP in Middletown. Bill attended Davenport Barber College and was a barber in Burlington for a time and then in Muscatine. Eventually he moved to Coralville and enjoyed living in the Iowa City area for many years becoming a big fan of the Hawkeyes. Bill liked to cook and worked at several area restaurants over the years.
Throughout his life Bill’s favorite hobby was listening to and collecting music albums. He enjoyed Elvis, especially his movies. But country music seemed to win out over time. Some of his favorite country artists were Reba McIntyre, Miranda Lambert, and Aaron Tippin among others. He was thrilled to share his birthdate with Lee Ann Womack whom he had seen in concert.
In his later years Bill loved watching game shows, particularly Jeopardy. He also had a fondness for Perry Mason and old westerns.
Bill was preceded in death by his grandparents, John & Mary Hanks and Charles & Vera Young, parents Clarence and Helen Young Hanks, his brother, Darrell Hanks, and brother-in-law Wayne Schnicker all of New London. Surviving family members include Sister-in-law, Virginia Hanks, and Bill’s 4 sisters: Sandra Schnicker of New London, Nancy (Bill) Larkins of Burlington, Meri Hanks of Ankeny, and Jane (Steve) Martin also of Ankeny. Nieces and nephews include: Rick (Diane) Schnicker, Marty (Mary) Schnicker, Shelley (Jason) Christianson, Sherry (James) Cox, Carolyn Hanks Farley, Toi (Troy) Mears, McKensie Martin, Madison Martin, and step nephews Bill (Christine) Larkins, Joel (Jill) Larkins, and Scott Larkins.
In October of 2019 Bill had a stroke and spent time in Great River Medical Center, Urbandale Health Care Center, and Journey Senior Living of Ankeny. A memorial has been established for Suncrest Home Health & Hospice in West Des Moines.
In keeping with Governor Kim Reynolds executive order during the COVID-19 health crisis, a private family burial will be held at Burge Cemetery where Bill will be buried next to his beloved parents. Online condolences may be left at

Ruth Anna Lemon, 80, of Burlington, died at 7:00 PM Saturday, April 18, 2020, at her home surrounded by family.

Born April 25, 1939, in Albia, Iowa, she was the daughter of George Leo and Anna Cecilia Stone. On July 15, 1961, she married Ronald Ray Lemon in Des Moines, IA. He died on December 18, 1990.

She was a 1957 graduate of St. Joseph’s Academy in Des Moines, IA.

Ruth Anna worked as an administration for Elm View Care Center, First United Methodist Church, and Hy-Vee.

She was a member of Divine Mercy Parish, and the Altar and Rosary Society. She enjoyed quilting, reading, gardening and her family, most of all.

Survivors include one daughter, Theresa Marie (Keith) Coleman Marie of Burlington; three sons, Randall Ray Lemon of Burlington, Michael William (Bobbi) Lemon of Ft Myers, FL, Gary Leo (Rachel) Lemon of Lehigh Acres, FL; 10 grandchildren, 2 great grandchildren and one on the way; two brothers, James Stone of Dallas Center, IA, and John Stone of Des Moines; one sister, Mary Agnes Beck of Des Moines, and numerous nieces and nephews.

Besides her husband, she was preceded in death by one grandson, Samuel James, one brother, and one sister.

Due to current restrictions, a private funeral service for Mrs. Lemon will be held. Burial will be in Aspen Grove Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established for Great River Hospice and the Cancer Society.

Prugh~Thielen Funeral Home is in care of the arrangements.

A photo tribute can be viewed and condolences can be sent to the family by visiting Ruth’s obituary at

Frederick William Bessine Jr, 83, of Burlington went home to be with the Lord on Friday, April 17, 2020 at his home.
Born July 30, 1936 in Burlington, Iowa he was the son of Frederick William Sr and Anna (Kohler) Bessine. On July 18, 1954 Fred married his childhood sweetheart, Patsy L. Wynn, and celebrated over 65 years of marriage.
Fred was owner and operator of Pen City Sheet Metal HVAC from 1973-2001.
He attended Burlington Baptist Church.
He was an avid golfer, hunter and was always volunteering to help others.
Survivors include his wife Patsy; children Jerry (Dawn) Bessine of Ft. Madison, Sheila (George) Waste of Burlington, Julie (Gary) Eckhoff of Delavan, Wisconsin, Andrew Bessine of Burlington and Brian Bessine of Oquawka, Illinois; six grandchildren, nine great grandchildren; two brothers Jim and Dick Bessine of Burlington
He was preceded in death by his parents and two brothers Bob and Ed.
Due to current conditions the family will have a private graveside service on Tuesday at Aspen Grove Cemetery. Pastor Kendall Adams will officiate.
A memorial in Fred’s name has been established for local charities and may be sent to Lunning Chapel.
Online condolences may be sent by visiting

Lawrence L. Smith, 81, of rural LaHarpe, Illinois passed away Wednesday, April 16, 2020 at 11:15 a.m.

Lawrence was born on November 9, 1938 in Hull, Illinois the son of Homer C. and Dora E. Morris Smith. On June 7, 1959 he married Mary Ann Finch at the Terre Haute United Methodist Church. She survives.

Lawrence was a 1958 graduate of the former Terre Haute Illinois High School. He farmed all of his life. He enjoyed hunting, watching sports, especially Illini basketball, the St. Louis Cardinals, and his grandchildren’s sporting events. In his earlier years, he enjoyed stock car racing and horse racing.

Survivors include his wife, Mary Ann; two sons, Larry (Trish) Smith and Gary (Becky) Smith all of LaHarpe; four grandchildren, Josh (Melinda) Smith, William (Karen) Smith, Tanner (Macy) Smith and Erin (Josh) Wear; fourteen great-grandchildren, one brother, Carl (Patricia) Smith of Macomb, Illinois, his aunt, Lucille Morris of Clarksville, Missouri and two sisters-in-law, Tanna Rhodes and Lenora Smith.

Lawrence was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Homer and Melvin Smith and one sister, Donetta Whalen.

Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, a private graveside service will be held Monday, April 20, 2020 at the Terre Haute Cemetery with Rev. Lee Unger officiating. A memorial fund has been established for the Terre Haute United Methodist Church. Memorials may be mailed to the Lawrence Smith Memorial Fund, c/o Banks & Beals Funeral Home, P.O. Box 503, LaHarpe, IL 61450.

To sign the guest book or leave a condolence please visit Lawrence’s obituary at