John J. “Jack” Wiesner, 89, of Urbana, IL, passed away on the evening of Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2019, at Amber Glen Alzheimer’s Special Care Unit in Urbana.
He was born on May 6, 1930, in Milwaukee, Wis., to Mildred Wiesner /Fischer and George Wiesner. As a young boy, he lived a few years with his great aunt and uncle in Hollandale, Wis., his favorite place in the world. He graduated from Bay View High School in Milwaukee and at age 19 joined the United States Air Force and became an Aircraft Mechanic.
Over his 20-plus years in the Air Force, he was stationed in Germany; Stewart AFB in Nashville; O’Hare AFB in Chicago; KI Sawyer in Marquette, Mich.; Wheelus AFB in Tripoli, Libya; Travis AFB near Santa Clara; Vietnam; and finally, at Chanute AFB in Rantoul, where he retired as a Tech sergeant. John then worked for Civil Service at Chanute for over 22 years.
He married Francis Smith of Nashville in 1955. She passed away in 2012. He married Lucy Benedetto of Chicago in 1958, and she passed away in 2005. He is survived by his wife, Yvonne Leggs of Penfield, who he married in 2006.
Surviving are his children: Jack (Donna) Wiesner of College Grove, TN; Patti (Gary) Fenske of Crystal Lake, IL; and Lori (Bob) Pratten of Champaign, IL. He is also survived by his step children: Gabby (Leo) Richards of Ohio; Tony (Lori) Leggs of Ohio; Bianca (Mick) Lowther of Rankin, IL; and Leroy Leggs of Penfield, IL. John had 7 grandchildren; 10 step-grandchildren; 5 great-grandchildren and 3 step- great-grandchildren. He leaves his sisters, Joyce (Bob) Czarnecki of Chattanooga, TN Janet (Tom) Harryman of Houston, TX, as well as several beloved nieces and nephews.
In 1970s, John formed the Has Beens, a 16-piece band that played big band music in the area for many years. He collected antique cars as his hobby and was a member of the St. Lawrence Catholic Church in Penfield, the VFW and the American Legion.
A funeral mass will be at 10:00 on Tuesday at St. Lawrence Catholic Church, Penfield. Fr. Michael Menner will officiate. Burial will follow at Danville National Cemetery, Danville, IL.
Visitation will be from 5 to 7 on Monday evening at Lux Memorial Chapel, 1551 East Grove, Rantoul.
Memorials may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, Salvation Army, Champaign County Humane Society or St. Judes.
A very special thank you goes out to the staff at Amber Glen Alzheimer’s Special Care Unit in Urbana for their excellent care, tender treatment and concern as well as to Harbor Light Hospice for their compassion during this journey.