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Ira Dale Cravens

October 22, 1921 - October 28, 2009

WILLIAMSVILLE – Ira Dale Cravens of Williamsville died at 10:25 p.m. Wednesday, October 28, 2009, at St. John’s Hospital.

He was born October 22, 1921, near Cornland, the son of John Fred and Lillie Erlenbush Cravens.

He was an administrator with the state of Illinois for 31 years, retiring from the state Mental Health Department in 1977. He served with the Army field artillery in the European Theatre during WWII and was a retired Army Captain. Military decorations included the Silver Star, the Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster and the Presidential Unit Citation.

Mr. Cravens was a member of the Williamsville United Methodist Church, Riverton Lavely Lodge 786, AF&AM, Springfield Consistory, Retired Officers Assn., the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. He was a past Amvets commander, past president of the Springfield Chapter Reserve Officers Assn., past president of the Williamsville Senior Citizens, past president of the Springfield Chapter of the ISEA Retirees, past president of the RSVP Advisory Council and an officer and member of several other organizations. He was founder of the North Sangamon Information Referral and Assistance Center, an all volunteer program serving senior citizens in Williamsville and surrounding communities. The Center received the Governor’s Hometown Award in 1987. He was recipient of the Springfield Senior Citizens HALL OF FAME award in 1988. Williamsville honored Cravens with Dale Cravens Appreciation Day in 1993 for his many years of volunteer service to the community. He also served on the Board of Senior Citizens of Springfield and Central Illinois. He received numerous other awards for his civic, fraternal and military activities.

Surviving are daughter, Cynthia Wilson of Springfield; two sons, Rodney of Springfield and Philip (Pam) of Chatham; five grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; four sisters, Mary Krone of Springfield, Maxine Miller of Champaign, Dorothy Mau of Chatham and Mona Galer of Colorado; one brother, Dwight (Marjorie) of Springfield; and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents and 1 brother, Merritt.

Visitation will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Monday, November 2, 2009, at Staab Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. on Monday, November 2, 2009, at Staab Funeral Home with Pastor Bob Swickard officiating. Burial at Camp Butler National Cemetery with military honors.

Memorials may be made to Land of Lincoln Honor Flight.

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