Christopher J. Heath, 51, of Geneseo, went to be with Jesus on Jan. 1, 2017, after a brief illness in Peoria’s OSF Saint Francis Medical Center with his parents and beloved brother by his side. A funeral service celebrating his life will be at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 7 at Grace United Methodist Church, in Geneseo. The Rev. Melva England will officiate. A visitation will be from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 6 at Vandemore Funeral Homes & Crematory, in Geneseo. Cremation rites will be accorded after the services and a private inurnment will be at a later date. Memorials may be made to the Chris Heath Memorial Fund, which has been set up at Central Bank, in Geneseo.

Christopher J. Heath, 51, of Geneseo, went to be with Jesus on Jan. 1, 2017, after a brief illness in Peoria’s OSF Saint Francis Medical Center with his parents and beloved brother by his side. A funeral service celebrating his life will be at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 7 at Grace United Methodist Church, in Geneseo. The Rev. Melva England will officiate. A visitation will be from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 6 at Vandemore Funeral Homes & Crematory, in Geneseo. Cremation rites will be accorded after the services and a private inurnment will be at a later date. Memorials may be made to the Chris Heath Memorial Fund, which has been set up at Central Bank, in Geneseo.

Chris Heath was born June 5, 1965, in Sioux City, Iowa, with big brown eyes and a heart of gold. Chris spent his childhood on the outskirts of Geneseo before moving as an adult into the literal and figurative heart of Geneseo where he proudly lived for the rest of his days.

Chris lived an extraordinary life filled with jobs at local businesses, volunteering at the Geneseo Food Pantry, and frequenting almost each and every business in his favorite town. He attended the Evangelical Free Church, in Geneseo. He was a proud 1984 graduate of J.D. Darnall High School and, by many accounts, the most beloved member of his graduating class. He remained a huge fan of all Geneseo sports for each season of each year of his life. He was a lover of sports, from local to professional, in a way that is unmatched and had a gift for the details of the game, an interest in the personalities and statistics of the game and was a go-to source of sports-related information for all who knew him. We like to envision him currently swapping stories with all of the sports legends who have gone before him.

Chris was most proud of his relationships. He will leave behind his treasured parents, Judy Heath, of Geneseo, and John Heath, of Bettendorf, Iowa; his brother, Mike Heath, of Davenport, Iowa; and his sister, Deb Christian, her husband, Tim, and their three kids, his beloved nephew Nick and nieces Natalie and Erin who live in Redmond, Wash.

His loss will be exponentially felt far beyond his family into the Geneseo community and friends across the country. Chris had an extraordinary gift of loving well and therefore he was extraordinarily loved well in return.