PEORIA – Howard “Howdy” M. Hicks, 93, of Peoria, formerly of Sterling, passed away Tuesday afternoon, February 26, 2019, at Manor Court in Peoria with close family by his side.
He was born on March 13, 1925, in Rockford to Wesley and Alice May (Scuffham) Hicks. He was preceded in passing by his hometown sweetheart of nearly 37 years, Alice (Hoover) Hicks, on May 21, 1984, and his better half of over 18 years, Mary Jane (Miller Vock) Hicks, on December 5, 2004. He was also preceded in death by his sister, Betty (Hicks) Stoudt.
Howard was a WWII Navy veteran and worked as a tool and die maker for National Manufacturing Company for 43 years until retiring in 1989. He spent many following winters as a “snowbird” in Bartow, Florida, where he made great friends. Howdy was an avid golfer, a frustratingly skilled Pinochle player, and a wonderful Husband, Dad, and Grandpa. He was the family anchor, and impressed the value of a simple moment spent together.
Those left to honor his legacy include his son, Larry (Kim) Hicks of Peoria; his granddaughter, Lauren Hicks of Peoria; and his brother, Millard (Esther) Hicks of Dixon. His family also includes 7 stepchildren, Gail Vock, Sandy (Roger) Shule, Liz (Terry) Brimicombe, Mary (Joe) Biebel, Jim Vock, Missy (Randy) Moore, and Julie Chouinard; 20 grandchildren; and 41 great-grandchildren.
Howard was also a supporter of higher education, and true to that form, requested that his body be donated to medical research. A celebration of his life will be held at St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Sterling on Thursday, March 14, 2019, from 1- 3 p.m., where he was a lifelong member. A memorial service will follow at 3 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in his memory may be directed to St. John’s Lutheran Church in Sterling or to the Alzheimer’s Association.
Arrangements are under the care and direction of McDonald Funeral Home and Crematory in Rock Falls. To send condolences visit www.mcdonaldfuneralhomes.com.