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Funeral: 10 a.m. Monday, November 12, 2018, at Frank & Bright Funeral Home
Visitation: 5 until 7 p.m. Sunday, November 11, 2018, at Frank & Bright Funeral Home
Interment: Oskaloosa Cemetery
Harley P. Bonham, age 90, of Flora, Illinois, passed away Thursday morning, November 8, 2018, at Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana.
He was born November 24, 1927, at the family home in Oskaloosa Township, the son of Everett H. and Lena (Allphin) Bonham. He married Norma A. Wildbur November 26, 1948, in Louisville and together they have shared 69 years of marriage.
Harley served in the Army during World War II, stationed in the Philippines. He later graduated from the Illinois State Police Academy, continuing on to serve as an Illinois State Trooper for 25 years, retiring from his post in 1982. He was baptized into the Shiloh Church of Christ in 1949 and was known for his lifelong commitment to reading and studying his Bible. He was an elder of the church for 70 years and took pride in baptizing all 8 of his grandchildren. He was recognized as an accomplished author and historian of local and American history, publishing and appearing as a resource in countless articles and publications, and was a founding member of the Clay County Regulators reenactment group. An outdoorsman, he enjoyed hunting and fishing. He has served as chaplain for the Sailor Springs American Legion for many years, and will also be remembered for his interest in performing and listening to bluegrass music.
He is survived by his wife: Norma Bonham of Flora; three children: Jesse (Lynette) Bonham of Oskaloosa, Roger (Cindy) Bonham of Oskaloosa, and Aleta (Jim) Tackitt of Flora; grandchildren: Emily (Ruben) Boyajian of Effingham, Jessica (Brandon) Lewis of Cisne, Jed Bonham of Flora, Christina (Michael) Tangman of St Peter, Mo, Kindal (Aaron) Eastin of Olney, Brian (Mindy) Tackitt of Flora, Angela Conrad of Terre Haute, IN, and Brent (fiancé Stephanie) Tackitt of St. Charles, MO; 12 great-grandchildren; 3 step great-grandchildren; 2 brothers-in-law; and 2 sisters-in-law. He was preceded in death by his parents and 2 brothers-in-law.
A funeral service will be held 10 a.m. Monday, November 12, 2018, at Frank & Bright Funeral Home in Flora with Anthony Oesch officiating. Interment will follow in Oskaloosa Cemetery with Illinois State Police and Military Funeral Honors presented. Visitation will be 5-7 p.m. Sunday at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations are suggested to Indiana Autism Society and will be accepted through the funeral home.
So sorry to learn of your loss. Harley was a man we loved and respected for many years, in and out of music. Please know that we extend our love and deepest sympathy to Norma, Emily and the family at this time.
Our sympathies to the family. So sorry for your loss. Prayers for each of you.
So sorry for your loss! We always enjoyed visiting with him.
I was so sad to hear of your loss, my heart goes out to all of you! He was an amazing man! I can remember him sitting in his chair reading a book, wearing his state trooper uniform as well as his buck skins. I hope you find comfort in knowing he is at peace now!
I'm so sorry for your families loss. What a nice man he was. I will miss him Thanksgiving . Prayers.
Our sympathies to the family. So sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. We will always remember Harley's love for his family, bluegrass music and history.
Aleta, I am so sorry for your family's loss. Praying for you all.
So sorry for your loss. Prayers for family.
Very sorry to hear of the passing of Harley. He was a good man and neighbor of my folks, Frank and Jewell Stanford, in Flora. Sympathy and prayers to Norma and family.
So sorry for your loss prayers for you and your family
We're proud to have known Harley. He was a man of integrity and talented in so many ways. We often talked with him at the "hub" on bluegrass night about the history of Clay County and its residents of years ago. We wish to let his wife, Norma, and all of his family know they are in our thoughts and prayers.
It was a pleasure to know and work with Harley. I just graduated from the state police training and was assigned to District 12 Effingham in 1967-68. Harley made me feel at ease and was always sincere. He was a good role model on and off the job!
So very sorry to hear of his passing. A fine gentleman that gave me more than my fair share of "warning tickets". A friend of my father's (Dr. Max and Ruth Wickiser). Prayers to all of his family.
So very sorry. You're in our prayers.
We are so very sorry. Praying you find peace knowing he is with God his Father.
On my frequent visits back home to Flora over many years, I always enjoyed my time with Harley. We both shared our military adventures and our knowledge of the history of Clay County, Harley being the teacher and me being "the grasshopper" soaking up his wide-ranging expertise. I shall much miss those opportunitys to learn from "the Master." Farewell, good friend.
I sure am so sorry to hear about Harley. He was a special man and Ralph and I enjoyed the years we played music together with you guys. You are in my prayers.
Praying for you all.
Aleta and Jim, so sorry for your loss. I always enjoyed visiting with Harley and reading his books on the history of Clay County. He did a great service to the people of Clay County by writing about our history.
Jesse, Roger and Aleta ... So sorry to hear the passing of your father. He was, and certainly will be remembered, as a gentle man ... who could scare you senseless during the years he was a state patrolman. Wasn’t a person in Xenia who didn’t respect him, and certainly admired him, as well. We pray for all your family. With God’s helping hand and guidance, hopefully this difficult time will be made somewhat easier.
So sorry. We enjoyed jamming with him at Charlie Brown Park.
So sorry to hear this and for your loss. I remember playing music with Harley and Norma on several occasions at the Bible Grove Opry.
What a special person Harley was, he will be held in our hearts.
So very sorry for your loss, thoughts and prayers.
Norma and family, we are so very sorry to hear of Harley's passing. Our prayers are with you and we hope the knowledge that he is celebrating in heaven will help ease the loss. Love from us both.
So sorry for your loss. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
Your family is in our prayers and we cant say enough how sorry we are.All our love
So sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with all the family.
Enjoyed your music so much at Xenia. Thanks for the beautiful music as I sang.
So sorry for your lost. Prayers for the family.