NORMAL — Merlin J. Nieswonder, 90, of Normal, passed away at 4:40 a.m. Saturday (June 22, 2019) at Mercy Creek, Normal.
A private family visitation and service will be held at Carmody-Flynn Funeral Home, Bloomington, with interment in East Lawn Memorial Gardens, Bloomington.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Advocate Hospice, 303 N. Hershey Rd., Ste. C, Bloomington, IL 61704, Parkinson’s Foundation, 200 SE 1st St., Ste. 800, Miami, FL 33131, Mercy Creek, 1501 Mercy Creek Drive, Normal, IL 61761 or Second Presbyterian Church, 404 N. Prairie St., Bloomington, IL 61701.
Merlin was born Oct. 16, 1928 in Downs, a son of John and Elizabeth Bunting Nieswonder. He married Rosemary Pumphrey on July 27, 1950. She survives.
Also surviving are two daughters, Lisa (Patrick) Richardson of Oceanside, Calif. and Lori (Dennis) Holley of Franklin, Tenn.; four grandchildren, Kelly Stipp of Villa Grove, Jacob (Amy) Stipp of Carlsbad, Calif., Jessica Smith of Powder Springs, Ga. and Jordan (Hannah) Brown of Charlotte, N.C.; two step-grandchildren, Kalin Richardson of Chicago and Trent Richardson of Champaign; seven great-grandchildren, Michael, Tucker, Brody, Gabrielle, Brooklyn, Isaiah and Miles. He also leaves behind our cat, Muffin, and many good friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents and a sister, Louise Teegarden.
Merlin graduated from Ellsworth Community High School in 1947 where he played varsity basketball. He retired from the City of Bloomington Water Department in 1989. Merlin was a longtime member of Second Presbyterian Church. He was a frequent visitor of Denny’s Donuts on South Main Street as long as his health permitted. Merlin enjoyed gardening and bowling, where he held the high score of 293 in his city league. He loved his family and his many good friends. Merlin will be deeply missed by all who had the privilege of knowing him.
The family wishes to thank the Advocate Hospice and Mercy Creek caregivers, Pastor Kathy, as well as Lynn Watson for her special care and love. Tonight the house is full of angels and grief. Our wish is a rainbow for your journey, Merlin. Our girls often said “The greatest gift I ever had came from God…it was my Dad.”