Cover photo for Donald “Don” Hopwood's Obituary
Donald “Don” Hopwood Profile Photo
Donald

Donald “Don” Hopwood

d. August 3, 2021

Donald Dean (Don) Hopwood, age 89, passed away peacefully on August 3, 2021.

Don was born October 3, 1931 at Springfield Hospital, the third son of Mary Jane (Kincaid) Hopwood and J. Ward Hopwood.  He was preceded in death by his parents and brothers James Edgar (J.E.) and Loren.

Don graduated from Athens High School in 1949 and from the University of Illinois in Champaign in 1953 with a major in Vocational Agriculture.  He married Doris Mae Bilse on December 29, 1956 in her family church, the Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church, in the Vailsburg section of Newark, New Jersey.

Don’s work experience was varied. He was the Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor in Astoria, Illinois with time out for military service in the U.S. Army, Counter Intelligence stationed in the First Army Headquarters, Governors Island, New York City. He completed basic training in Camp Chaffee, AR and specialized training at Fort Holabird in Baltimore, MD in the inaugural year of the Army Intelligence Center. In addition to his role as a teacher, he was a Country Companies Insurance Agent in Menard County, a purchasing agent for two companies, and later joined the First National Bank of Petersburg as a teller eventually being promoted to Senior Vice President and retired with the bank after more than 25 years.  During his banking career he served on various American Bankers Association and Illinois Bankers Association agricultural committees and taught several classes for the Illinois Bankers School.

Don kept a balance of focus on his career, public service and contributions to the community while prioritizing traditional family values.  Family was particularly important to Don as he did not know his own mother due to her death when he was only 5 months.

Don was actively involved in the Petersburg Chamber of Commerce (President, two terms), Tourism organizations both local and regional, including Honest Abe Days, The Petersburg United Methodist Church, New Salem Lincoln League, Vintage Ag Association, Lake Petersburg Board Member, Nomads On a Mission Active in Devine Service (NOMADS), Petersburg Lions Club, Redcoat at Memorial Medical Center, volunteer at St. John’s Hospital Hospice Program, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Illinois, Lifetime Member of the Menard County Historical Society, Lifetime Member of the University of Illinois Alumni Association and was currently a member of the Academy of Lifelong Learning at Lincoln Land Community College.

Don also enjoyed spending time with his beloved family, traveling both the US and internationally, playing golf, as well as enjoying his many hobbies including woodworking, stained glass, a quick nap after lunch and preparing delectable fried chicken at family gatherings.

One of Don’s most recent special memories was participating in the Land of Lincoln Honor Flight in September 2018 with his son David serving as his Guardian.

He is survived by his loving wife Doris and children Debbie (Doug) Berg, son David (Jacki) Hopwood and Denise (Tom) Tietz and grandchildren Bradley, Allison and Carolyn Berg, Kyle Elisabeth Hopwood (fiancé Tom Laughlin) and Blair Hopwood Winner (husband Nick), Marissa (fiancé David Ritter) and Alayna Tietz, and several nephews, a niece and a cousin.

Cremation rights have been accorded and a Celebration of Life will be held at 11:00 AM Saturday, October 2, 2021 at the Petersburg United Methodist Church.  There will be an opportunity to greet the family from 9:30 until 10:30 AM that morning also at the church.

Memorial contributions can be made to the Petersburg United Methodist Church, Building Fund; 221 West Jackson Street, Petersburg, IL 62675.

Mott & Henning Funeral Home is assisting the family. On-line condolences can be shared at www.mottandhenning.com.

Condolences

  1. Uncle Don was an awesome man! I cherish my memories of times with him and his wonderful family. My deepest condolences, love, and prayers are being sent to the family.

  2. Thinking of you Debbie and your whole family as you celebrate your Dad’s wonderful life. Prayers and hugs. Debby Shellard

  3. Debbie,

    So sorry to hear about your fathers passing. He was such a wonderful loving man who always cared about others. My prayers are with you and your family!

    Love,

    June and Craig g Sopko

  4. Uncle Don has always had a special place in my heart. I’ve had many fantastic times with him, aunt Doris, cousins Debbie, David, Denise and all of their families. I especially remember a trip to the Jersey shore when I was a young teenager. Many times being drug around Lake Petersburg behind his boat and me on my knee board. He has and always be like a second father to me. I will miss him dearly.

  5. Don was a favorite customer of mine when I delivered Don and Doris’ mail over a span of 20 plus years. He always greeted me with a smile and kind words. What a wonderful man! My sympathy to the family.
    Karen Pope

  6. My thoughts and prayers are with Doris, Debbie, David and Denise at this time of celebration of Don’s life. I will always cherish the many fond memories of my time in Petersburg spent with your family. Don is an example of a life well lived. I always appreciated the favor of his company and comments. May you always have wonderful memories to enjoy and share.

  7. We have so many cherished memories of Don, and feel blessed to have known him. Our families were closely involved in church, 4-H, school, and neighborhood activities.

  8. I’m sorry to hear this news. My late husband Tom and I met Don through the bank. He always greeted us like he had known us forever not like the newcomers we were having moved here in 1973. It didn’t matter whether it was in the bank or on the street. He always took the time for at least a short conversation with us. Tom held Don in high regard. He was a true gentleman.

  9. Dear Doris and Family, So sorry to learn of Don’s passing. We were classmates at Athens High School, and Don and my husband Don were friends from childhood.

  10. Many fond memories of Uncle Don. Like Don and my dad shooting fireworks on 4th of July summer picnics where we ate cold watermelon that had been on ice in a metal tub. Or taking a boat ride with Aunt Doris on Lake Springfield. Uncle Don was such a nice man.

  11. Sending love and prayers as you celebrate the life of your wonderful dad. I know how much you love him and how much you will miss him. As each wave of emotion comes in, think of your dad’s smile and you will surely feel his love. May your memories comfort you and your heart be full in knowing he is with our Lord, Jesus.

    God Bless you and your whole family.

  12. Doris,

    Your love has truly lasted a lifetime. Your beautiful marriage was one only found in fairy tales. May God bless you as you hold your loved one close to your heart and celebrate the life you shared together.

  13. Thinking of your family this weekend as you celebrate Don’s life. He sounds like such a wonderful man and we hope you can find comfort in your cherished memories of him.

  14. A beautiful celebration of life filled with love and wonderful memories. My thoughts and prayers go out to your family.

  15. Dear Debbie & Family,

    What a beautiful collection of photo memories to help carry the many memories in your heart. I remember meeting your father with his bright smile at a dance concert for the girls. I could easily tell he was a very proud Grandpa and will be deeply missed. May all the love that surrounds you and your most precious memories bring you comfort and peace.

  16. We are sorry we missed this time to honor your dad…Please know that we both have great memories from our childhood of your dad. We pray that each one of you will be comforted by God and all the wonderful memories you’ve had over the years. Please know we will keep you in our thoughts in the days to come.


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