Cover photo for Kenneth “Ken” Engel's Obituary
Kenneth “Ken” Engel Profile Photo

Kenneth “Ken” Engel

d. June 28, 2022

Kenneth “Ken” William Engel, age 71, of Petersburg, IL passed away on Tuesday, June 28, 2022 at his residence.

Ken was born, July 6, 1950 in Springfield, IL, the son of Edward “Bird” and Dorothy Engel.

He graduated from Athens High School as Salutatorian and attended Illinois State University.

Ken worked at the Owens Illinois Glass Company in Streator, IL and served as Manager at Gene’s Supermarket in Petersburg, IL.

Ken was a talented blacksmith, where he was owner of Iron Angel Forge.

He married Yadja Pierzchala on May 5, 1973.

He is survived by his loving wife, Yadja; brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Rick & Dayna Pierzchala; nephews, Joel, Keith, and Steve Pierzchala; sister-in-law, Josephine Lally; numerous cousins, including special cousins Chet and Maggie Bilows.

He is preceded in death by his parents, numerous aunts, uncles, a brother-in-law and a cousin.

Ken was very close to his mother-in-law and father-in-law, Viktoria and Stanley “Stash” Pierzchala, who also preceded him in death.

Ken was a lifelong learner.  His knowledge was far reaching.  He enjoyed researching an eclectic variety of subjects.  Ken valued his friends and the knowledge they shared with him.  Ken enjoyed long discussions about, blacksmithing, traditional archery, antiques, jewelry, coins, gardening, politics, Vikings, and history of the world.

Ken and Yadja celebrated 49 years of marriage.  Ken cherished his family and always expressed thanks for the blessings he received throughout his life.

Ken was a member of the Illinois Valley Blacksmith Association, Central Illinois Numismatic Association, and the NRA.

The family would like to thank Dr. Aziz Khan, Amanda Clouser, and the staff at Simmons Cancer Institute for the excellent care; Heidi, Charity, Sam, and Abraham of Kindred Hospice for the compassionate care; Chet and Maggie Bilows for all the love and support; Tiffany, a talented CNA with a heart of gold; and Caiti, Bri, Mel, and Dennis, superb physical therapists.

Per Ken’s request, cremation rites will be accorded and no services will be held.

Mott & Henning Funeral Home is assisting the family.


  1. There are no words that express the many years of friendship,mentoring and love I have for Ken and his beautiful soul of a wife Yadja. I will miss him every day along with his great stories and his genius knowledge and kind heart! I am so sorry for your loss Yadja and all of our loss.

  2. So sorry to get the news of Ken passing..I so enjoyed all the talks we use to have and all the archery get togethers that we shared. He will be missed..He is at peace now..God Bless you and your family..

  3. Sending my deepest condolences. Much love to you ((((hugs))))

  4. So very sorry for your loss. Angel was one of the good guys. You have all my prayers and many hugs. Please stay in touch.

  5. Ken was an honorable man and a great neighbor. He worked hard in his yard and for his home. Ken was a gentle and kind man to our family next door. He enjoyed seeing the kids play sports in the yard and encouraged them to just be kids. We will miss our neighbor Ken.

  6. So sorry to read about Ken. You have my condolences. Dick

  7. So sorry for your loss Yada , it was nice to know Ken, prayers and hugs Yada !!

  8. I am so sorry Yadja. My thought and prayers go out to you and the family. Hugs to you.

  9. So very sorry for your loss. You and Ken built many memories together. You made a fantastic team. Rich and I will continue to keep you in our prayers. 🙏

  10. Sending my deepest condolences. Much love to you Yadja.

  11. We our so sorry Yadia
    Our thoughts and prayers go out to you and the family
    Teresa and Stefan

  12. Sorry to read of Ken’s passing. I have many memories of him with our families. Prayers for you, Yadja.

  13. So very sorry to learn of your husband’s passing. I will tell Meagan, Andy and Will to lift you up in prayer as well as Steve and myself. Take care

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