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George McMahon

MENDOTA — George T. McMahon, 94, formerly of Mendota, died Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020, at Wesley Willows Senior Living in Rockford.

George was born May 23, 1925, in Urbana to the Rev. Joseph and Ella (Eliason) McMahon. He grew up in small towns in central Illinois during the Depression, graduating from high school in Tonica in 1943.

He was a World War II combat veteran of the U.S. Army in the Pacific Theater. He was inducted in the Army in summer 1943. As a member of the 81st Infantry (Wildcat) Division, he participated in the invasions of Angaur (Palau) and Leyte (Philippines), and in the occupation of Japan. His rank at the time of his discharge from service was first sergeant. He graduated from the University of Illinois on the GI Bill.

He married Betty Wenzel in 1957 and they lived in Tonica for one year before moving to Mendota. George worked as plant manager of Ristokrat Clay Products, a brick plant in Lowell, and as an accountant for Fasco Mills in Mendota. In retirement, he served as treasurer of the Mendota Grade School District and secretary of the Mendota Elks Lodge.

George was a life-long member of the Methodist church and served the church in Mendota in many capacities over many years. He enjoyed golf, bowling, time with family and was a devoted Cubs fan. He was known as a friendly, optimistic and gregarious person, and he maintained his positive outlook in the face of the unrelenting challenges of old age.

He is survived by Betty, his beloved wife of 62 years, and two sons, Robert (Angela) McMahon of Madison, Wis., and Ted (Gwen Jones) McMahon of Dayton, Va.

He was preceded in death by his parents; two sisters, Grace and Ruth; and three brothers, Daniel, Thomas and his fraternal twin-brother, James.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 28, at the First United Methodist Church in Mendota with the Rev. Mary Bohall officiating. Burial will be in Restland Cemetery, Mendota, with military rites by Mendota VFW Post 4079. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service.

Memorials may be directed to First United Methodist Church or Mendota Area Senior Services.

The Merritt Funeral Home in Mendota is in charge of arrangements.

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