Obituaries and Eulogies

William Francis Eckles, Jr

Mr. William “Bill” Eckles passed into the Lord’s hands the morning of 

November 11, 2014, at Sommers Hospice House in Sebring, Florida. 

Bill was born on April 8, 1933 to William and Cecelia Eckles in Queens, New York. 

He is preceded in death by his parents and sisters, Rosemary Mullen and Irene 

Melrose.  Bill was an Army Veteran who died on Veterans Day. Bill graduated 

from the University of Pittsburgh with a Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering.  

He married the love of his life Clarice “Casey” Juers on June 8, 1955 and started 

life together in Northeast Ohio. Bill began his professional career with the East 

Ohio Natural Gas Company as an Engineer. During the peak of his career he worked 

at Michigan Natural Gas Company as Vice President for 20 years. He retired in 1994 

as the CEO of New Jersey Natural Gas Company. 

Bill and Casey traveled the world and finally settled in paradise at Lake Ashton Golf Club, Lake Wales, Florida. He enjoyed home improvement projects, TV technology and movies. He is survived by Clarice “Casey” Juers Eckles and their six children, and 13 grandchildren: Oldest son William “Chip” and wife Colleen and their 3 children, Ryan, Mary Kate and Matthew of Tempe, Arizona.  Jeff and wife Laurie and their 2 sons Alex and Mike of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.  Daughter Rebecca and husband Mike Sharp and their 2 children Garrison and Madeline of Kent, Washington.  Mark and wife Jackie and their 2 sons Nicholas and Luke of West Chester, Ohio. Todd and his children, Lauren and Brandon of Warwick, Rhode Island. Kurt and his wife Dana and their children Rachel and William of Dallas, Texas. Bill and Casey proudly put all of their six children through college. 

Funeral Mass will be held at 11: 00 A.M. on Tuesday, November 18, 2014, at the beautiful Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Lake Wales, Florida with Rev. Glenn Charest as celebrant. Memorials of Remembrance may be made to the Holy Spirit Catholic Church P.O. Box 232, Lake Wales, FL 33859-0232 in memory of Bill Eckles. Inurnment will be made privately at Resurrection Cemetery, Holland, Ohio

William “Bill” Eckles

William Eckles, Jr Eulogy given by Chip Eckles, his oldest son.

Good morning everyone.  My father had a long, happy life.  He loved his family.  Like most men, he did not say “I love you” much but his actions were crystal clear.  Family was everything to him and he was well loved and respected in return.  

He helped us grow into successful, happy adults.  He taught us how to work every Saturday morning including how to dig square holes.  He provided consistent discipline and clear boundaries.  What impressed me was he always addressed serious issues calmly and fairly.  

He provided a great growing up experiences for us including family dinners every night, building and enjoying a summer vacation cabin at Atwood Lake, building a house in Ida and summer trips when we were older.  Dad and Mom bought an AirStream travel trailer, and each summer he planned and executed a two week trip to places like the Outerbanks in North Carolina, LA, New Orleans, Maine, and around Lake Superior.  When I say “planned and executed” I am not kidding, these trips were great but we were on a schedule.  

We all have many fond memories of thing that Dad did for us.  When we lived in Ida, he put up a basketball hoop and when we used it a lot he put up lights, so we could play into the evening.  He also put up a volley ball court.  Instead of using the normal spindly poles, he used telephone poles sunk into concrete.  I am sure those poles are still there.  Anyways, we had a lot of fun playing volleyball, and as a family we still do at reunions. 

I have fond memory of Dad taking Mom and I out on a snowy night to the Youngstown Club for my birthday.  We had the place to ourselves because only a crazy person was driving in that snow storm.  The chief was so bored, he came out to say hello and baked a special birthday cake for me.

Jeff fondly remembers Dad’s help plastering his cabin in Boyne Mountain.  Dad volunteered (insisted) to help plaster the dry wall but he had open heart surgery before it could happen.  Jeff contracted to have it done but cancelled when Dad said he felt good enough to help (insisted again) several months after surgery.  Over the Thanksgiving Holiday in 2000, Jeffrey with his brothers and friends help put up dry wall and Dad plaster behind them.  They made amazing progress but did not quite finish, so Dad volunteered to stay a few more days to finish until a snow storm was predicted.  Then he could not leave fast enough, he hated snow that’s why he retired to Florida.

Rebecca appreciated the Dad’s support in her long endeavor to finish college.  She also fondly remembers helping him put away Christmas several years ago.  He did a Dickens village with a train set and had it organized down to labeling the wiring and putting the bolts back into the dis-assembled parts.  

Mark fondly remembers the good advice Dad gave him when he was living on his own in California as a young man.  He also remembers a Saturday job on an especially hot summer day.  He was digging trenches to add irrigation to one of Mom’s many gardens, and at the end of the job Dad brought him a cold beer.

Todd fondly remembers Dad inviting him and Kurt to go to a travel trailer show in Detroit.   He also fondly remembers doing sound-off as we got ready to leave on trips.  Sound-off was each kid saying there birth order number, so Dad knew he had everyone.

Kurt has a fond memory of Dad building several hurdles and teaching him how to do hurdles in the back yard, so he could participate on the Ida High School Track Team.   

He put all of his six children through college.  It was important to him.  He had a plaque for each graduation that he hung in his office and in his TV room after he retired.  He told us all get learn a skill in college and ended up with five engineers and one accountant.  

Since the mid-1990’s, Mom and Dad arranged family reunions in great vacation spots like Duck, NC, Lake Tahoe, Cannon Beach, Oregon and Sanibel Island, Florida. All of us have fond memories of those events.  In the last few years as his life got narrower, Mom says he always “perked up” during our visits.

Besides being a family man, my father was goal and task driven.  He graduated from University of Pittsburgh with a degree in Civil Engineering and worked in the natural gas industry.  He made plans and set goals at work, and he accomplished them and was very successful.  When he was district manager in Youngstown, he did a lot of fund raising as part of his job.  He was very successful because of his planning skills, and he helped many organizations including the Boy Scouts and United Way.  The Planned Parenthood wanted his help but he was tired and wanted a break, so he wrote a letter saying he did not want to embarrass them because he had six children in nine years.  They got a good laugh at his letter and insisted that he help them anyways.  By the end of his career, he was the CEO of New Jersey Natural Gas.  

I went to visit him in his office once, and he showed me his office.  It was very neat, just one folder for each subordinate.  He had a computer but I am not sure he ever used it.  He was not a big fan of computers and cell phones.   

At home, he and my Mom would make plans, and he made them happen.  When we were young, we went to Chicago and New York City and Mom and Dad learned the hard way just like the rest of us that traveling with several young children is painful.  They conceived a plan to build a summer cabin at Atwood Lake.  With the help of his father and other family, Dad erected the steel frame for the a-frame cabin.  My Dad’s father told him to ground the structure well because the cabin was on the side of a hill and exposed to lighting.    Fortunately, he did and when the house was hit be lighting one time when we were there we were all safe.  

I learned to help my father as a young boy at Atwood.  He would send me off to get some tool and I would try to figure out what he wanted.   After awhile I got pretty good at it.  All of us enjoyed spending the summers at Atwood Lake and we all have fond memories.  Jeffrey did something similar for his boys at Boyne Mountain, and we have all enjoyed visiting his “cabin.”  We use to work every Saturday morning on jobs.  We would start the day off with pancakes and work all morning.  After lunch, Dad would count the steps to the couch for an afternoon nap and we were free.

When we moved to Ida, Michigan, Dad and Mom decided to build a house on a twenty eight acre farm.  We were older and it is amazing what eight people can get done in a day with my Dad in charge.  When we moved there, there was only one tree and when we left there were thousands of evergreen and willow trees because my Dad loved trees.  Todd fondly remembers cutting down blue spruce tree for Christmas but humming taps because they were so beautiful.

When Dad and Mom were downsizing to their home in Lake Ashton, Mom wanted her children to have the special things that she no longer needed.  Dad drove all over the country delivering furniture and stuff.

As you can tell from some of the earlier stories, my father enjoyed home building and home improvement.  He helped Jeffrey renovate on old farm house in Dexter, Michigan.  They used heavy duty jacks under the house to make it level.  They added a gazebo on the back of the house too.  Jeffrey had the design planned but Dad took one look and redesigned it.  

When Colleen and I moved to Newtown, PA in 1991, we bought a house with a large unfinished basement.  Dad and Mom lived close in Red Bank, NJ, so Dad and I had the best time planning and building out the basement.  When it can to time to put up dry wall, I asked my friends to help.  He said they were terrible nailers.  Actually, he said it a different way but I can’t say it in church.

After his retirement, he would send his days looking for and completing projects.  Their house in Lake Ashton has every improvement possible.

Besides his family and home improvement, my Dad enjoyed anything related to TV.  It was his technology and I was always amazed at his ability to wire together complex audio-visual systems.  He also enjoyed recording and watching movies.  He had almost an encyclopedic memory of great movies.

My Dad had several sayings the he loved.  After the prayer at each meal, he would say “Who ever eats the fastest get the mostest.”  Another favorite was “Life is short, eat desert first.”  

Finally, I wanted to say that we were all blessed to have Bill Eckles as our father, and we are going to miss him.  I sure he will be keeping an eye on us from heaven.

Andrea L. Juers 

Andrea L. Juers, 73, of Cape Elizabeth, died at Mercy Hospital on Aug. 20, 2013, 

after living 21 years with breast cancer.  Andrea was born in Oakland, Calif., on 

June 1, 1940, the daughter of Anne and John Langen. The family settled in 

Wheaton, Md. in 1948 where she graduated from Wheaton High School in 1958. 

She graduated from Penn State with a BA degree in Liberal Arts in 1962. While at 

Penn State she met her husband of 51 years, David Juers. They were married on 

July 14, 1962, in Silver Spring, Md. After living three years in Appleton, Wis., 

where David attended graduate school, they settled in Westbrook, Maine. In 1993 

they moved to Cape Elizabeth where Andrea could see her beloved sunrises to 

her heart's content.

In the early years of their marriage Andrea devoted her life to raising four children. 

She did volunteer work at the Westbrook- Warren Congregational Church and was instrumental in the creation of Community Health Services. After serving as Christian Education Coordinator at the church she became a book salesperson with Sundance Publishers, selling books to schools with a focus of teaching through literature.

In 1992 she was diagnosed with breast cancer, and although she had years where she was cancer free, there were several times that she had to receive cancer treatments, the most recent being from 2010 to 2013. She became an avid participant and supporter of the Cancer Community Center, where she organized and participated in several fund raising activities. She applied her fund raising skills to the MS150, a bike ride to benefit multiple sclerosis, and to Stewardship Campaigns and auctions at the Allen Avenue Unitarian Universalist Church. In spite of her many episodes with cancer she lived life to the fullest, traveling to see family and friends and visiting many places outside the United States. She was an avid reader, writer, potter, and gardener.

She is survived by her husband, David; four children, Douglas and wife Jill of Walla Walla, Wash., Joelle and husband Mark of Wilmington, Del., Pamela of Charlotte, N.C., and Daniel and wife Jolena of South Portland; seven grandchildren, Eliza of Walla Walla, Grace of Wilmington, John and Zane of Charlotte, and Jackson, Caleb, and Norah of South Portland. Her seven grandchildren were a major joy in her life.

To honor her memory, a service for Andrea will be held at the Allen Avenue Unitarian Church in Portland at 1:30 p.m. on Sept. 14. Another way to honor her memory would be to join her Cancer Community Center fund raising team, Dawn Raisers, and participate in the Fight Back Festival at Pineland on Sept. 28. Arrangements are under the care of Advantage Funeral Services, 981 Forest Ave., Portland.   In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Cancer Community Center or the Allen Avenue Unitarian Church. Andrea L. Juers

Andrea and David Juers

Joseph Michael Gilligan 

Gilligan, Joseph Michael, 77, of Mesa, Arizona, passed away in the early morning 

hours on Tuesday August 13, 2013. There will be a Celebration of Life Ceremony 

at 3:00pm on Saturday August 17th at Mariposa Gardens Memorial Park.  Joe will 

be buried in Arlington National Cemetery at a date to be determined. 

Joe, often called Bud by his Family and Friends, was born in Orange, New Jersey 

on February 7, 1936. He graduated from Our Lady of the Valley High School and 

received a full academic scholarship to Seton Hall University where he graduated 

with a BA in English. Joe was married to Eleanor K. Gilligan (Dunham) on 

September 20, 1958. They were married for 55 years. 

Joe served in the US Army for 21 years before retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel. He had a number of overseas duty assignments to include tours in Korea and Vietnam. He was a decorated soldier having been awarded numerous commendations to include the Parachutist Badge and Bronze Star. While serving on Active Duty, Joe furthered his education graduating with two Masters Degrees from George Washington University and Central Michigan University respectively. Joe retired from the US Army in 1983. His second career included positions as the Director of Safety and Security at Albert Einstein Medical Center, and later, Graduate Hospital in Philadelphia, PA. His third career as a Realtor began in Pennsylvania and continued when he and his wife Eleanor moved to Mesa, AZ in 1998. Joe was gifted with the written word and public speaking having the ability to connect with all people. He enjoyed reading, watching sports, and spending time with his Family. Joe was an A rated Racquetball player, a fierce competitor on the court. 

Joe is survived by his wife Eleanor and their three children, Colleen Eckles, Kelly Boyle, Chris Gilligan and the Grand Children Ryan, Mary Kate and Matthew Eckles, Jared Boyle, Michael and Alexis Gilligan and Gabriel and Gianna Hurtado. Joe is preceded in death by his parents, Thomas Gilligan and Anne Gilligan (Harrocks). In lieu of flowers, please send donations to APDA (American Parkinson Disease Association) in memory of Joseph M Gilligan. Please visit to leave condolences.

Joe with daughter Colleen and  grandson, Matthew

Rosemary Eckles Mullen

Rosemary Eckles Mullen, 76, died on Sunday, March 30, 2003.  

An Athens resident for 34 years, she resided at 147 Chinquapin 

Way, and most recently at Arbor Terrace.

Mrs. Mullen was born in Somerset, Massachusetts, on 

December 10, 1926, the daughter of the late William Francis 

Eckles and Cecelia Eckles Schaefer. She was preceeded in 

death by her husband, Dr. David J. Mullen Sr.

She grew up in New York City and in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where she graduated salutatorian of South Hills High School class of 1944. She later attended the University of Pittsburgh, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude with a B.S. degree in Education. While at the University of Pittsburgh, she was elected to Mortar Board as well as numerous other honor organizations, and was a member of Zeta Tau Alpha Fraternity, where she held the office of President. She went on to receive a Masters in Education from the University of Georgia in 1975.

Locally, she held offices with the Gamma Pi alumni chapter of Zeta Tau Alpha Fraternity, Democratic Women of Clarke County, Cedar Creek Garden Club, University Newcomers, PEO Women's Educational Organization and the University of Georgia Catholic Center, where she was a member for 34 years. Rosemary was also a volunteer for Adult Literacy in the Athens area.

Mrs. Mullen and her family accompanied her husband during a two-year stay in Afghanistan where he was Director of Curriculum for the Columbia University Educational team. During this tour, the Mullens traveled extensively throughout Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

Throughout her life, Mrs. Mullen dedicated herself to the service of her community and to the enrichment of the lives of her children, grandchildren and friends.    Funeral services will be held on Wednesday, April 2, at 11:00 a.m. at the University of Georgia Catholic Center with Father John (Jack) McDowell officiating. Graveside services will be held at Oconee Hills Cemetery followed by a reception for family and friends at the Catholic Center Building.    Pallbearers will be Vince Keane, Tom Kosslow, Jake Gentry, Levi Gentry, John Mullen, Nathan Mullen and David Mullen.

Survivors include a son, David J. Mullen, Jr. and his wife, Cynthia, of Denver, CO; two daughters, Laura Mullen Gentry and her fiance Ken Welborn of N. Wilkesboro, NC; Debra Mullen Keane and her husband Vincent of Athens; a brother, William Francis Eckles and his wife Clarice of Lake Wales, Florida; two sisters-in-laws, Alverda Mullen Squires and Ida Mae Mullen Tampkins; brother-in-law Raymond Mullen; eight grandchildren; David Jacob Gentry, John Levi Gentry, Mary Claire Keane, Lauren Cathrine Keane, Nathan Shields Mullen, David Adrian Mullen, John William Mullen, and Kathryn Elizabeth Mullen.  The family will receive friends at Bernstein Funeral Home on Tuesday, April 1, from 6 to 8 p.m. A Rosary service will be held at 6 p.m.  Those desiring to do so may make memorial contributions to: David Mullen Sr. Memorial Scholarship Fund, UGA Foundation, 824 S. Milledge Ave., Athens, GA 30602.

Athens Banner-Herald, Tuesday, April 1, 2003

Inga (Pearson) Nelson

April 29, 1920 - January 20, 2016

Inga (Pearson) Nelson, 95, of Attleboro, passed away peacefully on 

Wednesday, January 20, 2016 at Life Care Center of Attleboro. She 

was the wife of the late Paul Hilding Nelson, who died on 

August 4, 2001.  

Born on April 29, 1920 in Karlstad, Sweden, she was the daughter 

of the late Erik Pearson and Anna (Andersson) Pearson.

A graduate of Jamestown (NY) High School, Class of 1938, Inga 

worked as a dental assistant for her entire career before retiring in 

1983. She moved to Attleboro in 2004, having previously resided in 

Sunrise, FL. She was a member of Immanuel Lutheran Church in 


Inga is survived by her children: Larre H. Nelson and his wife Lisa of Attleboro, and Dennis E. Nelson and his wife Janice of Pompano Beach, FL. She leaves her grandchildren: Paul Nelson and his wife Erin, Amanda Nelson, Philip Nelson and his wife Jessalyn, Keith Nelson, Greg Nelson, Deron Johnson and his wife Margie, Brandon Johnson and his wife Karin, Jared Johnson and his wife Kristen, and Travis Johnson; as well as six great-grandchildren, four nieces and seven nephews.

Inga was the sister of the late Thure Pearson, Viola Larson, Eva Herren, and Anna Erickson of Jamestown, NY.

Visitation has been respectfully omitted. Donations in her honor may be made to the Memorial Fund of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Attleboro.  A memorial service will be held on February 6, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Attleboro. Burial will be in Hollywood Gardens Cemetery in Hollywood, FL.

Irene Melrose


Mrs. Irene Cecelia Eckles Melrose, 48, of New Castle RD 5, died at 3:45 a.m. Jan. 14, 1978, in the Jameson Memorial Hospital in New Castle after several months illness.  She was born in Philadelphia on July 20, 1929, to Mrs. Cecelia Schmitt Eckles Schaffer and the late William F. Eckles. She formerly lived in Bethel Park, moving to New Castle RD 5, seven years ago.  Mrs. Melrose was of the Methodist faith. She is survived by her husband Douglas C. Melrose Sr., whom she married Dec. 26, 1946, two sons, Douglas C. Jr., of K.I. Sawyer Air Force Base in Michigan and William B. of New Castle RD 5; two daughters, Mrs. Donald (Carole) Little of Volant, and Mrs. David (Bonnie Sue) Murk of Beaver Falls; her mother Mrs. Cecelia E. Shaffer of New Castle RD 5, a sister Mrs David (Rosemary) Mullins of Athens, Ga., a brother William F. Eckles Jr., of Monroe, Mich., and three grandchildren.  Friends will be received at the E. Galley Sharp Funeral Home, 310 W. Neshannock Ave., from noon to 2 and from 7 to 9 p.m. on Sunday. The service will be at 11am. Monday at the funeral home conducted by the Rev. Stanley Byrd of New Wilmington United Methodist Church. Burial will follow in Fair Oaks Cemetery.

Emil Juers


Emil R. Juers of 229 Emmett Avenue died at the Elk County General Hospital on July 16, 1977, Friday evening, following a brief illness. He was born December 10, 1880 in Wausau,  Wisconsin.  He  resided  in Ridgway for 53 years  and was  a member of the First Lutheran Church.  He had been a superintendent for the Hyde-Murphy Company. He is survived by his wife, Grace, and by two sons, Henry of Ridgway and Richard of Huntingdon. Four grandchildren   and   seventeen   great-grandchildren also survive.  Funeral services for Emil R. Juers will be held at the Paul Meehan Funeral Home at 1 pm. on Monday. Officiating will be Reverend Sigmund S. Decker of the First Lutheran Church. Interment will follow at the Oakmont Cemetery.  Friends will be received at the Paul Meehan Funeral Home on Sunday, from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9. The family requests that donations be made to the Building Fund of the First Lutheran Church.

Henry Juers


Henry A. Juers of 320 Charles Street died on Sunday at Mercy Memorial Hospital  in  Monroe,  Michigan, following an illness of six weeks.  He was born April 2, 1907, the son the late Emil R.  and Wilhelmina Radichael Juers. He married Mildred E. Nelson on June 21, 1933 in Ridgway and she preceded him in death in 1971. He resided in Ridgway for 53 years and was a member of the Bethlehem Lutheran  Church, Board of Senior Citizen Center, and the M.0.R.A. Club. He had been employed as a cabinet maker by the Hyde-Mmphy Company and was retired from the Mid-Penn Telephone Company.  He is survived by the following: a daughter,  Mrs.  William  Eckles (Clarice) of Ida, Michigan; a son, David H. of Westbrook, Maine; his stepmother, Grace Juers of Ridgway, a stepbrother, Richard Knecht of Huntingdon Valley; and ten grandchildren.  Funeral services for Henry A. Juers will be held at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church on Wednesday at  11  a.m. Officiating will be Reverend Warren Hollertz. Interment will follow at Oakmont Cemetery. Friends will be received at the Paul Meehan Funeral Home today from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9. Donations to the Bethlehem Lutheran Church or to the Cancer Fund would be appreciated by the family.

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