Celebrating the life of Robert James Lonteen
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Robert James Lonteen, 83, of West Peoria passed away peacefully after a 5-year battle with colon cancer on Monday, September 4, 2023 at his home.
Bob was born in Peoria on March 2, 1940, to Alphonse and Della (Valdez) Lonteen. He is survived by his wife and verbal sparring partner of more than 5 decades, Mary Lou (Kelly); his children, Brent of West Peoria and Reed of Morton, and six grandchildren: Dylan, Olivia, Lillian, Conner, Caitlin and Jackson. One grandchild preceded him in death.
Bob spent much of his childhood in Albuquerque, N.M. but moved back to Peoria when he was in high school. He graduated from Spalding Institute in 1958 and attended Bradley University. He proudly served the U.S. Coast Guard for eight years. He worked as a printing press operator at International Paper Co. (formerly Muirson Label) in Peoria for 28 years, followed by 10 years at Multi-Ad. He later worked security for Caterpillar Inc. at the company’s headquarters, and the U.S. Transportation Security Administration at the National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research laboratory in Peoria.
Bob was an avid fan of the St. Louis Cardinals, Chicago Bears and novels by Tom Clancy, Clive Cussler and Jonathan Kellerman. But he was an even bigger fan of his family. Some of the most treasured family memories were attending Cardinals games, gathering with extended family during the holidays, and the times spent fishing, swimming, trap shooting, and attending a hog roast or fish fry at Valley Lakes Country Club. But even greater joy for him came later in life spending time with his grandchildren, watching them participate in their various sports and activities.
He was never accused of possessing great patience, nor being flexible in his opinions. And his words of wisdom might have had more impact on his children had they not brought so much laughter from them. But his heart was larger than life.
The family extends heartfelt gratitude to Dr. Natalie Pedersen, as well as Jamie Brady, Jackie Kimmey and Andy Belton at Carle Hospice for their genuine compassion and kindness. We were blessed to have them during our time of need.
Visitation will be held at St. Mark’s Catholic Church in Peoria on September 16, 2023, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. with a brief prayer service led by Msgr. Brian Brownsey to follow.
Memorial donations in his name may be made to:
Carle Health Center for Philanthropy (Hospice)
120 NE Glen Oak Avenue, Peoria, IL 61603
The Cremation Society of Mid-Illinois Co. Pekin/Peoria is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences may be made at csmico.com
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