William?R. “Sparkie” Armstrong, 81, of Moline, died Thursday, April 12, 2012, at Hope Creek Care Center, East Moline. A mass of Christian Burial was held Monday, April 16, at Sacred Heart Church,?Moline. Burial was in the National Cemetery, Rock Island where military honors were conducted by American Legion Post No. 246, Moline. A visitation was held Sunday,?April 15, at Rafferty Funeral Home, Moline. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. Mary’s Food Pantry or Niabi Zoo.
He was born on Aug. 4, 1930, in Geneseo, the son of William and Mildred (Hallsten) Armstrong. He graduated from Geneseo High School and Illinois State University, and did post graduate studies at both Illinois State University and the University of Illinois. He married Dorothy McCann on Aug. 4, 1956, in Creston, Iowa. He was an U.S. Army veteran having served in the Korean War. He taught history at Rock Island High School for 34 years and also was the debate coach. He was a member of Sacred Heart Church, Moline, American Legion Post No. 246, the American Federation of Teachers and the ACLU.
He was elected in 1978 to District 8 for the Rock Island County?Board. He served on the board in many capacities, including a term as chairman. He was proud of the care provided by the county nursing homes, the former Oak Glen Nursing Home and the current Hope Creek Care Center. He was elected delegate to the Illinois Constitutional Convention that convened on Dec. 8, 1969.
Survivors include his wife, Dorothy; children and spouses, Kevin and Roxanne Armstrong of Delavan,?Wis and Bridget and Casey Stengel of Moline; grandchildren, Brian, Kathleen, Ted, Kelly and Megan Armstrong and John and Robert Stengel; a brother, Jack Armstrong of Winter Park,?Fla. He was preceded in death by his sister, Joan Edwards.