Albert Irving Hemenway

Albert Irving Hemenway, age 83, passed away on Friday, July 14, 2017, in Beloit, Wisconsin.

He was born in Red Wing, Minnesota, on October 12, 1933, to Lionel Irving and Anna Bernice (Scullen) Hemenway. He graduated from Red Wing High School and was an alumni of Mankato State University. Albert married Gloria Ann (Johnson) in Red Wing, November 26, 1954; they had seven children. After graduation from Mankato, he started teaching, in Worthington, Minnesota. Then, while living in Janesville, Wisconsin, Albert pursued a career within the YMCA, that would last for more than 25 years. He began as the Youth Director; and, ran the Y’s summer camp in nearby Camp Rotamer. In 1964, he became Director of the Garvey Branch YMCA, in Wichita, Kansas. His contribution to this community was substantial, including resurrecting the barren old fields into turf suitable for team sports and the pool for competitive swimming. In Springfield, Illinois, as Membership Director, he caught the cowboy fever while conducting the yearly “Membership Round Up”; he sported his cowboy hat, boots and bolero ties in its honor. He contributed to Effingham, Illinois, as Executive Director and left the YMCA in the mid 80’s to pursue different work. He continued to stay connected to that community by being a soccer coach and referee, into his seventies. He met his second wife, Sandra Gail (Mowery), while in Effingham; they were married on July 24, 1999.

Growing up in Minnesota, he enjoyed winter ‘sports’ and played football in high school and college. Variously throughout his life, he was a member of the boy scouts, Kiwanis and Rotary Clubs; taught Sunday school; and, sang around campfires, in church choirs and school plays (Robin Hood and The Pirates of Penzance). He loved the outdoors: hunting and fishing--in his youth, camping, going to parks and small carnivals. But, he especially enjoyed being out in his workshop, creating things. Beginning in his youth, he made gas-powered model airplanes, go-carts, landscapes for his electric trains, worked with leather and beads, silk-screened T-shirts, and much more. Yet, he spent most of his time -- when “out-in-the-workshop” -- working with wood, making furniture and signs. He played cards; always carried a pocket knife; and, as the son of a baker, he liked to joke he was an SOB.

He is survived by his seven children: Stephen, Daniel, Jennifer (Kim) Burton, Kristin (Jim) Butler, Sara (Sal) Hantousch, Nathan (Annamarie Fella), and Amy (Erik) Johnson; his grandchildren: William “Tom” Burton, Laura (Stephen) Berdecia, Amy (Richard) Harp, John Butler, Ellen Butler, Mathew West, Dennis Johnson; his great-grandchildren: Miranda Hemenway-Werdin, Ivan West, and Camdyn West; his siblings: Harriet Hamilton, Eli (Marilyn) Hemenway, Clair (Karen) Hemenway, Herbert (Alice) Hemenway, and Susan (Philip) Lingle; and many nieces, nephews, and other extended family members. He was preceded in death by his parents; his wives; his grandson, Justin Hemenway; his nephew, Joey Boughan; and in-laws: Lee Hamilton, and Tacy (Vanswool).
A Memorial Service will be held in October. For more information, contact his daughter, Sara Hantousch, at Memorials may be made to “Friends of Pere Marquette” 13112 Vista Center Ln, Grafton, IL 62037 or go to: Schneider Funeral Home & Crematory is assisting the family.
He had a habit of taking “Sunday driving” trips; we wish him a long and happy one.
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