Robert W. Depke, 84, passed away June 20, 2014 at home with his family. He was born at Victory Memorial Hospital in Waukegan on July 11, 1929. He was welcomed home to the Depke Garage on Old Grand Avenue, Gurnee.
Bob attended Gurnee Grade School and Warren Township High School, where he played all sports and was a member of the Champion Warren Football 49rs. He was selected as a member of the Warren Township Hall of Fame. After working in the family business he sold cars for Lindskog Mercury in Libertyville. In 1961, Bob won his first election as Warren Township Supervisor. In 1975, he along with the Town Board, purchased a farm on Washington Street in Gurnee and developed the Warren Township Center & Highway Department that is named after him. He also served as Lake County Board Commissioner and later on was elected Chairman of the County Board in 1968. Bob's leadership led to many accomplishments for Lake County. He will be remembered for leading the Saving Great Lakes Group, who worked diligently with the State of Illinois and Governor Edgar to convince the National Closure Board to keep Great Lakes Naval Base open in Lake County, Illinois.
His name appears on the Robert W. Depke Juvenile Justice Center in Vernon Hills, which he had the foresight to have the county purchase to house the Juvenile Center & Courts in recent years.
Bob will always be remembered as a man of strength and principle, who loved his family unconditionally. He is survived by his loving wife, George Anne of 45 years; six children, Robert W. (Jennie) Depke II, Shawn B. (Lynne) Depke, Michael (Audrey) Hendee, Braden (Janet) Depke, Kellie Hendee and Bowen (Claire) Depke; grandchildren, Robert (Laura) Depke III, Tyler, Justus, Kyla, Jessica, Alexander, Genevieve, William Depke, Alisha (Michael) Depke-Lankford, Shawn, Kevin, Scott and Amy Deming; great grandchild, Mackenzie Lankford and many nieces, nephews and countless friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Justus and Beatrice (Hook) Depke; stepmother, Edith; sister, Eloise (Orvin) Herman; brothers, William "Bill" and Justus (Jess) Depke; daughter, Cindy Jo Deming and nephew, Wally Herman.
He was a member of the Gurnee Community Church. Bob served 58 years as a founding member of the Gurnee Lions Club, a charter member of Gagewood Lions Club, and in the Exchange Club of Gurnee. He served in the National Guard out of high school during the Korean War.
Bob was a lifetime Green Bay Packer and Chicago White Sox fan.
Services are entrusted to WARREN FUNERAL HOME, CEMETERY & MAUSOLEUM as follows: Visitation will be held at the Robert W. Depke Warren Township Center, 17801 W. Washington Street, Gurnee, Illinois, Friday, June 27, 2014 from 3:00 pm to 9:00 pm. Funeral services are Saturday, June 28, 2014 at 5:00 pm at the Gurnee Community Church, 4555 Old Grand Avenue, Gurnee, Illinois with Pastor Chris Stephens officiating.
Private burial at Warren Cemetery with Pastor Brian Walters officiating.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Warren Township Special Recreation Association, 17801 W. Washington Street, Gurnee, Illinois 60031.
Friday, June 27th, 2014 3:00pm - 9:00pm, Robert W. Depke Warren Township Center
Saturday, June 28th, 2014 5:00pm, Gurnee Community Church
Warren Cemetery & Mausoleum