|Verne C. Luvall, 94, formerly of 2595 155th Street, Galesburg died at 9:20 a.m. Thursday, June 14, 2012 in Madison Manor Nursing Home, Madison, Ala.
Verne, the son of Carl Luvall and Esther Luvall, was born March 23, 1918 in Galesburg. He married Virginia Mureen on October 11, 1952 in Galesburg. She preceded him in death on June 25, 1989.
He is survived by a son, Jeff Luvall of Madison, Ala.; a daughter, Michelle ''Missy'' Marshall of San Antonio, Texas; a brother, Robert Luvall of Bonita Springs, Fla.; two sisters, Shirley McIlravy of Bellville, Ill. and Mildred Simmen of Sunnyville, Calif.; and five grandchildren and five great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents and two sisters.
Verne attended Galesburg High School and graduated in 1936. He later attended Bradley University. He spent two years in the United Stated Army during World War II as a staff sergeant, small arms specialist with the 3435th Ordnance Medium Maintenance Company. He was stationed in the Asiatic Pacific Theatre, on Okinawa, Ryukyus and Korea. As a small arms sergeant on Okinawa, Verne was responsible for repairing the various small arms used by the Army. He developed a fix for the gas port clogging causing jamming problems the BAR and M1 rifles and thus saving many American soldiers lives. Verne worked as a machinist at Gale Products for 35 years.
Verne was a member of the Trinity Lutheran Church in Galesburg. At Trinity he enjoyed working with the church youth for over 16 years in the LOGOS youth ministry program. Verne was a passionate horticulturist. He spent many years pursuing research on a blight resistant strain of hazel nuts and grafting various types of nut trees. Verne has an American chestnut strain named after him ''Luvall's Monster Chestnut'' by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. He was also a member of the Illinois, Iowa, and Northern Nut Growers Associations. He was a life-long member of the Galesburg Rifle Club. He spend many years building the family country home at ''Stillwood.''
Cremation will be accorded. Memorial service will be 2 p.m. Saturday, July 21, 2012 in Trinity Lutheran Church. Rev. Dr. Tom Larsen will officiate. Burial will follow in Warren County Hope Cemetery with military rites by Ralph M. Noble American Legion Post 285. There will be no visitation. Memorials may be made to Trinity Lutheran Church or Presbyterian Home for Children, Talladega, Alabama. Hinchliff-Pearson-West Funeral Directors and Cremation Service is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be made at www.h-p-w.com.