Lolan Lantz, 92, of Monroe Center, Illinois, was born October 26, 1930, and passed away on June 15, 2023. Lolan is survived by his beloved wife of 72 years, Wava (Smith), his son, Brian (Teresa) Lantz of Oak Park, daughter, Marcia (Trent) Barnhart of Rockford and his cherished grandchildren Harrison Barnhart and wife Minomi, Taylor Barnhart, Abigail Lantz, Charlotte Lantz, and Austin Barnhart. He was preceded in death by his oldest son, Harlan Craig Lantz, his beloved parents Omer and Agnes (Dodd) Lantz and dear brothers Darrell (Hazel) and Merle (Shirley) Lantz.
Born in Mitchell, South Dakota, Lolan moved to Illinois when he was 4, and grew up in Monroe Center. He graduated from Monroe Center High School and was accepted to the engineering program at the University of Illinois, but after high school decided to pursue an interest in radio broadcasting and completed radio technician school in Omaha, Nebraska. He worked briefly as a radio news announcer during the Korean War, but he missed his sweetheart and returned to Monroe Center to farm and was united in marriage to Wava Jean Smith on September 15, 1951.
Lolan and Wava started farming together, renting his father's land near Edson and Kilbuck Roads before moving to their permanent home on Mulford Road. In addition to crop farming, over the years Lolan and Wava raised dairy cows, angus beef cattle, sheep, hogs, chickens, and many beloved farm dogs. They retired from farming February 17, 1996.
Lolan was proud of his contributions to the community. He was a charter member of the Monroe Center Lions Club in1954 and was honored by the club after 60 years of active service February 28, 2015. He was a life-long member of the Farm Bureau of Illinois, a member of the Holcomb Masonic Lodge #505, and a dedicated member of the Monroe Center Community Church, where he served as a board member and enjoyed singing in the choir for many years. When he wasn't singing, the soundtrack to his farm work was WGN Radio announcing the Cubs game.
The love and devotion he had for Wava, his family and his five grandchildren was the greatest joy of his life.
Special thanks to OSF Hospice and all of the great nurses and medical providers that have cared for him while he lived out his life the past few years, with special thanks to Amy Kroos, Lori Montana, Gina Flynn, and Erdenetseg Sharaa who comforted him so well in his final days.
Visitation and memorial service will be from 10:00am to 11:00am on Thursday, June 22, 2023 at The North Church in Monroe Center, located at 102 West Street, Monroe Center (next to the fire department and old high school), with pastor Darren Loeppky of OSF Hospice officiating. Interment will immediately follow at the Monroe Center Cemetery. The family invites everyone back to the old North Church basement for coffee and fellowship after. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Monroe Center Properties LLC (This is for care of The North Church), Box 36, Monroe Center, IL 61052. If writing a check please make it payable to "Monroe Center Properties LLC."