Cover photo for Bernadine Kelm's Obituary
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1918 Bernadine 2018

Bernadine Kelm

August 14, 1918 — July 22, 2018

Bernadine Pauline Kelm, 99, of Lacon, died on July 22, 2018 at St. Joseph Nursing Home in Lacon. She was born on August 14, 1918 in Benson to the late George and Anna Borchers Wilts. Bernadine married Ruben Kelm on June 8, 1944, in Washburn. Ruben died on March 13, 1957.
After Ruben's death, Bernadine cooked for Cowell's Colonial Cafe for over 30 years. She also was a Girl Scout troop leader and did home health care. In her retirement years, she enjoyed arts and crafts, quilting, and sewing, making many beautiful creations for her children and grandchildren. She also had a passion for volunteering. In 2006, she received the ROSE award (Recognition of Service Excellence), the President's Volunteer Service Award, and the Betty Comisky Volunteer Service Award for her work at the Lacon Community Center. In her later years, she volunteered for Hands Helping Haiti. Bernadine was a member of St. John Lutheran Church, Lacon, for over 35 years.
Bernadine is also preceded in death by three sisters, one brother, and one grandson. She is survived by son George (Stella) Kelm of Agana Guam, daughter Ruth (Warren) Smith of Lacon, four granddaughters, two step granddaughters, 11 great grandchildren, two step great grandchildren, and one great great granddaughter due in October.
A visitation will be held on Wednesday July 25, from 5 to 7 PM at St. John Lutheran Church in Lacon. Funeral services will be held at St. John on Thursday July 26 at 10 AM with Pastor Linda Strader officiating. Burial will be in the Lacon Cemetery and memorials can be left to Hands Helping Haiti, St. Joseph's Nursing Home, or St. John Lutheran Church. Online condolences can be left at


JUL 25. 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM (CST)

St. John Lutheran Church
106 N. Ida St.
Lacon, IL 61540

Funeral Service

JUL 26. 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM (CST)

St. John Lutheran Church
106 N. Ida St.
Lacon, IL 61540

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Bernadine P. Kelm, please visit our floral store.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Bernadine Kelm, please visit our flower store.


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