Henry H. “Hank” Harpel Jr., 67, of Geneseo, died Friday, Jan. 15, 2010, at Hammond-Henry Hospital Skilled Care Unit, Geneseo. Funeral services celebrating his life were held Tuesday, Jan. 19, at Wildwood Baptist Church, East Moline. The Rev. Scott Boerckel officiated. Burial was in Rock Island National Cemetery, where military honors were accorded by Moline American Legion Post. Visitation was held Monday, Jan. 18, at Vandemore Funeral Home, Geneseo, In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials be made to Wildwood Baptist Church.


Henry H. “Hank” Harpel Jr., 67, of Geneseo, died Friday, Jan. 15, 2010, at Hammond-Henry Hospital Skilled Care Unit, Geneseo. Funeral services celebrating his life were held Tuesday, Jan. 19, at Wildwood Baptist Church, East Moline. The Rev. Scott Boerckel officiated. Burial was in Rock Island National Cemetery, where military honors were accorded by Moline American Legion Post. Visitation was held Monday, Jan. 18, at Vandemore Funeral Home, Geneseo, In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials be made to Wildwood Baptist Church.

He was born Nov. 12, 1942, in Milwaukee, Wis., the son of Henry Harold and Violet (Kjell) Harpel. He graduated from Rock Island High School and attended Memphis State University, where he earned double bachelor’s degrees from 1968-1969. He received a master’s degree in systems management from USC in 1974. He proudly served his country in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War. He married Gail Shelton Dec. 27, 1970, in Memphis, Tenn. He had been employed as an engineer at the Rock Island Arsenal for 24 years retiring in 2007. He was a member of the Wildwood Baptist Church, where he was a former trustee and choir member. For many years, he enjoyed hosting a Cajun Shrimp Boil for the whole church. He was a past president of the Geneseo High School Choral Booster Club and co-chairman for the Fall Harvest Music Festival. He enjoyed gardening, photography, traveling, a weekly movie night with close friends and especially spending time with his grandchildren. He was an avid Green Bay Packers fan.

Survivors include his wife, Gail; a daughter and spouse, Karen and Andrew Wall of St. Louis, Mo.; a son and spouse, Brett and Allison Harpel of Cincinnati, Ohio; five grandchildren, Khai and Kaleb Wall, Meredith, Jamel and Corinne Harpel; a brother and spouse, Bruce and Lynn Harpel of Minneapolis, Minn., and several nieces, nephews and their families. He was preceded in death by his parents and a brother, David. The family thanks friends and family for all their love and support during Hank’s 2-1/2 year battle with pancreatic cancer.