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McDonald Funeral Home

1002 12th Avenue
Rock Falls, IL 61071
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“Prayers go to the family , and he will be missed by many. Laurie know Im thinking of you and I know what a great Dad he was to you. You will have...Read More »
1 of 2 | Posted by: Judy Dimond - Neenah, WI

“God has another angel in heaven! May you be at peace and with your loved ones in heaven Jack! I doubt there is a Culvers there so no more sundes!!...Read More »
2 of 2 | Posted by: Denice Doss - Rock Falls , IL


STERLING – Well known community leader and businessman, John E. H. "Jack" Cassens, 85 of Sterling died Tuesday January 29, 2013.

He was born on January 8, 1928 in Sterling, the son of John A. and Gertrude (Strauch) Cassens and had attended the University of Illinois and a life loyal Sigma Phi. He married Lois I. Kelsey on May 20, 1948 in Sterling. She died on February 10, 2011. Early in his career he farmed and later also owned and was operator of the Whiteside Grain and Storage in Rock Falls. In 1972 he built, owned and operated the Rock Falls Ramada Inn and Canal House restaurant. He served on the Whiteside County Board from 1968 – 1982 of which time he was county board chairman from 1974-82; he served on the Whiteside County Airport board from 1983-2012; he served on the Blackhawk Area Tourism Committee; the Greater Sterling Development Corporation; he was instrumental and on the committee to begin the Whiteside County Enterprise Zone; he was a founder and board member of Community State Bank, Rock Falls; he was a 43 years member of the board of directors of Palmyra Mutual Insurance Company. He was a recipient in 1988 of the P.W. Dillon Award, presented by the Sterling Chamber of Commerce. He was active in local, state and federal politics.

Survivors include his son, Gary Cassens (Patti Kieffer) of Sterling; his daughter, Laurie (Tom Myers) of Rock Falls; his sister Jane (Bob) Hampton of Sterling; his grandson, Craig Mayer of Peoria; and long time family friend Patsy McThenia of Rock Falls.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Lois; his son, Dr. Brett Cassens MD and an infant sister.

Visitation will be held on Friday February 1, 2013 from 4-7 PM at the McDonald Funeral Home 1002 12th Avenue in Rock Falls. Funeral services will follow on Saturday at 10 AM at St. John Ev. Lutheran Church in Sterling, with the Reverend Mark Oehlert officiating. Burial will conclude at Riverside Cemetery, Sterling.

Memorials in his memory to St. John Ev. Lutheran Church, Sterling.