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F.M. Oakley

4/1/1926 - 1/25/2018

PEKIN ~ F. M. “Red” Oakley, 91, of Pekin, passed away at 3:15 p.m. Thursday, January 25, 2018 at his home.

Born April 1, 1926 in Dyersburg, Tennessee to Clint and Lenora (Meek) Oakley, he married Aletha Waline Baker on December 25, 1950 in Parsons, Tennessee.  She survives.

Also surviving are one son, Jeffrey (Chris) Oakley of Pekin; one daughter, Sheera DeGroot of Pekin; daughter-in-law, Carol Oakley of Jackson, Tennessee; eight grandchildren, Kurtis Viktor, Jennifer Oakley, Blayze Oakley, Jodi (Shane) Simmons, Elyse (Jonathan) Cavell, Regan (Sean) Critz, Morgan DeGroot, and Elijah DeGroot; and four great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents; one son, Jon Gregory Oakley, M.D. on December 20, 2017; three sisters, Mildred Doyle, Sue Cook, and Catherine Cohen; and three brothers, Willie B. Oakley, C. A. Oakley, and Thomas Oakley.

A 1944 graduate of Dyersburg High School, he received his Bachelor of Science degree in biology from Union University in Jackson, Tennessee.  He received a Master’s degree in Biology from George Peabody College for Teachers in Nashville, Tennessee in 1957 and a Master’s degree from the University of Missouri – Columbia in 1962.  He did additional coursework at Knox College, University of Illinois, Illinois State University, and Illinois Central College.

Mr. Oakley taught at Tiptonville High School in Tiptonville, Tennessee from 1949 to 1952, Arp Consolidated School in Ripley, Tennessee from 1952 to 1953 and Biggsville High School in Biggsville, Illinois from 1953 to 1957.  In 1957, he began teaching at Pekin Community High School in the Science Department, retiring in 1986 as a biology teacher.

He was a devoted and faithful member of Liberty Baptist Church in Pekin, where he served as a deacon for 60 years and was recently honored as deacon emeritus. He also had served his church as an adult Sunday school teacher and church choir member.

Mr. Oakley enjoyed refinishing old furniture, working 3-d puzzles, working in his yard, and feeding his birds.

His funeral will be at 10 a.m. Wednesday, January 31, 2018 at Liberty Baptist Church in Pekin.  Pastor Roger Lipe will officiate.  Visitation will be from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at Preston-Hanley Funeral Homes & Crematory in Pekin.  Burial will be at Glendale Memorial Gardens in Pekin.

Memorial contributions may be made to Liberty Baptist Church, 2105 Sheridan Road, Pekin, IL 61554.

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