NORMAL — Earl Samuel Kaufman, 97, of Normal, passed away at 9:50 p.m. Sunday (July 25, 2010) at Heritage Manor Nursing Home, Normal.

His memorial service will be at 11 a.m. Aug. 5, 2010, at the Mennonite Church of Normal with Rev. Tim E. Schrag officiating. Cremation has been accorded. Kibler-Smith Memorial Home is in charge of arrangements. Visitation will be from 4 to 7 p.m. on Aug. 4, 2010, at the church. Memorials may be made to Mennonite Church of Normal or a charity of the donor’s choice.

Earl was born March 31, 1913, in Hudson Township, the son of Christian and Martha Ummel Kaufman. He married Marie Frances Heiser May 23, 1942. She preceded him in death on Nov. 17, 1979. He then married Anna Greene Oct. 21, 1980. She preceded him in death on July 19, 2006.

Surviving are one daughter, Tena Bliss, Normal; two sons, Gary (Claudia) Kaufman, Danvers; and Lonne (Marcy) Kaufman, Normal; three stepchildren, Ronald (Debra) Greene, Bloomington; Kenneth Greene, Saybrook; and Daniel (Susan) Greene, Bloomington; five grandchildren, Eric Bliss, Ryan (Jessica) Bliss, Daniel Kaufman, Wesley Kaufman and Perry Kaufman; six stepgrandchildren, Nikki (Jared) Hall, Kate Greene, Beki Greene, Jessica Greene, Lauren Greene, and Ryan Greene; two great-grandchildren, Ian and Jason Bliss; two stepgreat-grandchildren, Sydney and Jordann Huisinga; sister-in-law, Margaret Beard, Largo, Fla.; and many nieces, nephews and other relatives.

He graduated from Normal Community High School in 1931, and farmed in Hudson Township until 1955. He became a part-owner of the International Harvester dealership in Hudson in 1948, and a few years later owned and operated the business with longtime partner Art Kuchan of rural Hudson until retiring in 1977.

He was mayor of Hudson from 1956 to 1960. He helped organize the Hudson Fire District and served nine years as treasurer and a volunteer firefighter in the district. He served as Hudson Township Trustee for eight years. Earl was a charter member of the Hudson Lions Club.

Some of Earl’s greatest enjoyment came from playing the saxophone. He was a member of Musicians Local 102. He and his saxophone made many appearances in local clubs, nursing homes and senior citizens groups. Earl was an avid pilot for 38 years. He loved to fly and give airplane rides to his family and friends.

Earl was a life-long member of the Mennonite Church of Normal.

He was a loving husband, father and grandfather and a good friend to many. Earl will be greatly missed and fondly remembered by his family, friends and all those who knew him. The family wishes to thank the Blair House, caregiver Becky Erdman, Advocate BroMenn Hospital, Heritage Manor of Normal and Passages Hospice for the care and consideration they gave to Earl.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.kiblersmith.com.

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