Oct 122021

Artwork by Oliver Lee Jackson ’58 is currently presented in a solo exhibition at the St. Louis Art Museum. The free exhibition will run through Feb. 20, 2022. It features work spanning five decades of Oliver’s career. A 120-page catalog, featuring work from this exhibition and a 2019 exhibition at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., is forthcoming. Click here to read more about Jackson’s artwork.

 Posted by at 11:28 am
Jun 292021

Marlene (Sebby) Thruston ’58, of Spartanburg, South Carolina, died June 13, 2021. She was 84. Marlene majored in nursing at Illinois Wesleyan and was employed at Copley Memorial Hospital in Aurora, Illinois, and Morristown General Hospital in Morristown, Tennessee. She also worked for several private physicians. Marlene and her husband, whom she met in line at Arnaud’s restaurant in New Orleans in 1963, lived in Tennessee, South Carolina and Puerto Rico at various times. She was a member of First Presbyterian Church, where she volunteered in various capacities and served as a teacher for Mother’s Day Out. She also volunteered at her daughters’ schools and extracurricular activities. Later, she volunteered with Mobile Meals Ministry, and as a direct patient care volunteer for Spartanburg Regional Hospice. She enjoyed playing bridge, baking, sewing, reading, traveling and cheering on the Clemson Tigers football team. Above all, she was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother who treasured time spent with family. She is survived by her husband, two daughters, five grandchildren and a brother. 

Read the full obituary here.

 Posted by at 10:27 am
Jun 212021

John David Zwanzig ‘57 passed away June 1, 2021 in Ottawa, IL, surrounded by his children. He was a graduate of Ottawa Township High School, Illinois Wesleyan, and John Marshall Law School. Dave started his career as a private attorney in his father’s practice. He later became the Assistant State’s Attorney of LaSalle County, and then went on to become a LaSalle County Associate Judge, where he served on the bench for 25 years. He also taught family law at IVCC and the Sheridan Correctional Center. Dave was known by many for his generosity and his desire to help others. He is survived by his children, four grandchildren, his former wife, a brother, and a step-daughter.

 Posted by at 10:50 am
Jun 212021

Robert Randall ’52 of Gilman, Illinois, died May 5, 2021. He was 91. Robert studied business administration at Illinois Wesleyan. After graduation, he served in the United States Marines during the Korean War. Upon his return, he married his wife, and they later moved to Gilman, where they owned and operated the Ben Franklin store until it closed in 2006. He is survived by many extended family members.

 Posted by at 10:48 am
Jun 152021

Alma (Alexander) Somerville ’49 of Peoria, Illinois, died Feb. 26, 2021. Alma studied music at Illinois Wesleyan, where she was a drum majorette and active in Delta Omicron. She went on to a career as a singer, music teacher and choir director at Forrest Hill United Methodist Church of Peoria. She sang with the Peoria Philharmonic Chorale and was a soloist for the Christian Science Church. Alma and her late husband Ross Somerville ’51 lived in Bloomington, Illinois; St. Louis; Peoria; Las Vegas; Champaign, Illinois; and Belvidere, Illinois. In Las Vegas, she sang at UNLV with the Southern Nevada Musical Arts Society and University United Methodist Church Choir. Alma also worked in several retail stores, retiring from Carson Pirie Scott in Urbana, Illinois, in 1986. She was an avid reader and painter, and enjoyed time spent with her family. She is survived by two children, including Susie (Somerville) Brown ’79, five grandchildren, five great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews. 

 Posted by at 11:43 am
May 242021

Allan Horsman ’58 of Bloomington, Illinois, died May 20, 2021. He was 85. Allan majored in business administration at Illinois Wesleyan and went on to a career as finance director for the City of Bloomington. He was a member of St. Matthew’s Episcopal church in Bloomington, as well as the Wade Barney Masonic Lodge and the Scottish Rite Consistory. He was active in IWU’s Pride Alumni Community. Allan enjoyed classical music and opera, and wintering in Florida. He will be remembered for his kindness and will be missed by all who knew him. He is survived by his partner.

May 132021

Mary Lou (Gooding) Mercier ’50 remembers being an IWU cheerleader in 1950-51 and joining Sigma Kappa sorority. She met her husband on a blind date while he was a student at ISU.  She would tell a student that IWU has good teachers.

May 032021

Carol (Vanderbeek) Schmidt ’58 remembers IWU Homecoming, dances, parties and the art department building.  If she were to return to campus she would like to visit the art department and the Kappa Delta House.  She feels the quality of art instruction was the major influence in her life, as she taught art clsses in her home studio for 50 years.  She has traveled to many countries including Mexico and Jamaica and has enjoyed seeing the museums in Europe. She spends winters in Fountain Hills, AZ and summers in Illinois and Wisconsin.

Apr 272021

Carol (Fulk) Hunt ’52 of Ludington, Michigan, died April 7, 2021. She was 90.

Carol attended Michigan State University before transferring and graduating from Illinois Wesleyan. She both attended college and worked full-time while raising four children. As a teacher, she was known for being kind and nurturing, but also able to instill discipline in her students. She was active in her church, and loved her dogs and family homes and cottages in Michigan, Florida and North Carolina. She is survived by her husband, four children, 10 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.


You can read the full obituary here.

 Posted by at 12:02 pm
Apr 202021

June Yolton Cusey McClister ’49 died in February 2020. She was 93.

June was a member of the IWU class of 1949. She was a member of the Kappa Delta sorority. She is survived by her son (Phillip Cusey), daughter-in-law (Melissa) and 2 grand children.

 Posted by at 2:09 pm