Gary Dean Taets, 68, of rural Sheffield, died Wednesday, Nov. 1, 2017, at his home with his wife and daughters by his side. A funeral mass was at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 7 at St. Patrick Catholic Church, in Sheffield. The Rev. Mark Miller and the Rev. Paul Meismer officiated. Burial followed at St. Patrick Catholic Cemetery. A visitation was from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Nov. 6 at Vandemore Funeral Home & Crematory, in Atkinson. A rosary was recited at 3:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you make a donation to the Parkinson’s Disease Research Society (PDRS) at parkinsonsprogress.org with the attention of: Dr. Michael Rezak MD PhD (Central DuPage Hospital, 0N150 Winfield Rd., Suite A-2, Winfield, IL 60190) or to the Annawan FFA program (501 W. South St., Annawan, IL 61234).

Gary Dean Taets, 68, of rural Sheffield, died Wednesday, Nov. 1, 2017, at his home with his wife and daughters by his side. A funeral mass was at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 7 at St. Patrick Catholic Church, in Sheffield. The Rev. Mark Miller and the Rev. Paul Meismer officiated. Burial followed at St. Patrick Catholic Cemetery. A visitation was from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Nov. 6 at Vandemore Funeral Home & Crematory, in Atkinson. A rosary was recited at 3:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you make a donation to the Parkinson’s Disease Research Society (PDRS) at parkinsonsprogress.org with the attention of: Dr. Michael Rezak MD PhD (Central DuPage Hospital, 0N150 Winfield Rd., Suite A-2, Winfield, IL 60190) or to the Annawan FFA program (501 W. South St., Annawan, IL 61234).

Gary Dean Taets was born July 22, 1949, in Kewanee, the son of Marvin and Mary (VanPoucke) Taets. He graduated from Annawan High School in 1968, Illinois State University (ag education) and worked at Lincoln Way and Annawan High Schools. Gary married Peggy Williams on May 6, 1972. He was a member of St. Patrick Catholic Church, IAVAT, and the Knights of Columbus. He would be the first to joke around with you and could naturally put you at ease when you spoke with him. Everyone who knew Gary could probably tell you a story that made them smile about one of the interactions they had with him. He had a way about him that made your heart happy, whether it was a classroom experience or just a fishing or hunting tale from one of his many adventures. Gary loved his family, FFA, agriculture, farming, fishing, hunting and HATED Parkinson’s disease. Gary Dean Taets will be remembered as a loving husband, father, son, brother, son-in-law, uncle, teacher, farmer, FFA leader, mentor, friend, fisherman, hunter, connoisseur of ice cream, and all things that involved getting his hands dirty. He was 68 years young.

Those left to cherish his memory include his main “squeeze” and partner in life and wife, Peggy; his daughters, Carrie (William) Northcott and Kimberly (David) Hexter; and his father, Marvin Taets. He had great pride in his grandchildren: Ethan, Jackson, Justin, Bennett and Callen. They would tell you that their Papa hung the moon. His siblings are: brother Dennis (Sharyn) Taets and sisters, Nancy (Larry) Dynes and Jean Ann (Jim) Carter. He is also survived by his in-laws, Marilyn and George Williams; and sister-in-law, Susan (Bryan) Pape. Gary also is survived by many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his mother, Mary; his grandparents, Oscar and Clara VanPoucke and Phillip and Elizabeth Taets; and by his aunt, Arlene Taets; and uncles Raymond (Vera) Taets and Raymond (Lynn) VanPoucke.