Francis Lyal AumillerFebruary 13, 1929 ~ August 21, 2017 (age 88)
Francis Lyal Aumiller, 88, of Litchfield, IL, died on Monday, August 21, 2017 at Heritage Health Hospice in Springfield IL.
Francis was born to Lyal and Irene Aumiller on February 13, 1929 in Connersville IN. The family later moved to Iuka, IL and eventually to Champaign, IL.
Francis graduated from high school in Champaign and joined the Air Force in 1947. After serving overseas in the Pacific, he was stationed in Washington DC where he met Lois Hoekstra Stephenson in the Washington DC First Church of the Nazarene. They married July 8th, 1950 just days after Francis was discharged from the Air Force.
Immediately following, they moved back to Champaign area where Francis worked for various dairy companies including Meadow Gold. They began their family during those years, Kenneth in 1952, Dana in 1955, and Sharon in 1957. For both Francis and Lois, their church, Westside Church of the Nazarene, and their God was the most important force in their lives. During those years, Lois felt that God was calling her into fulltime pastoral ministry but she needed more education to fulfill that mission. With Francis' complete support, the family moved to Bourbonnais, IL so Lois could attend Olivet Nazarene University while Francis kept his job in Champaign. He lived with his mother nearby and went back to Bourbonnais on his days off. Two and a half years later, they moved to Mercer WI for their first pastorate. Francis worked as a caretaker of a home where Al Capone had lived many years earlier. But being in such an isolated area was difficult so they eventually took a new pastorate in Auburn IL. During that time, Francis did several jobs including selling Charlie Chips door to door. Eventually he was able to get back on with Meadow Gold Dairy in Springfield IL. He worked for them until he retired in 1986.
During those years, Lois had many health issues that forced her to give up the pastorate and they began serving God as lay members. After all their children were out on their own, Francis and Lois moved back to Springfield and began operating a day care center. As it neared time for Francis to retire, they sold everything and moved into a mini-motorhome planning on spending their retirement years traveling.
For several years, they traveled and worked as campground hosts in several states. But as with many other dreams, they realized it wasn’t the perfect life and they decided to purchase property in Branson MO. They began spending summers in Branson and traveled to Pharr TX to work with a children's home in Reynosa Mexico. The little ones' eyes would light up whenever they saw Francis coming to the home. They both loved helping these kids. Throughout their lives, there was always the desire to serve God and help others. But as their retirement years continued, Lois began having more health problems so they made the decision to move back to Springfield. They continued going to Texas in the winter for a few years but stopped when Lois became wheelchair bound. During the following years, Francis sacrificed much by caring for Lois while also continuing to serve God at Trinity Church of the Nazarene. But the years of being a caregiver took a toll on Francis and the decision was made to place Lois in a nursing facility. Francis moved to Chatham to be close to Sharon but in 2010, he became very ill spending almost the whole summer in the hospital. Upon his recovery, he moved in with Ken and his daughter-in-law, Rita for the next seven years. On Aug. 16th, 2015, Lois passed away. When Francis' health had declined and he became wheelchair bound, he moved into a nursing home in Litchfield. He became ill just a few months later and has now joined his wife in Heaven.
During his 88 years of life, he has had many hobbies...hunting, taxidermy, traveling, photography, reading, woodwork, and raising a family...but through all of those years, the one constant has been his devotion to his God.
He is survived by his brother, Basil (Pat) Aumiller; his sister, Freda (Charles) Chaney; his brother-in-law, Art McElwee; his sons, Ken (Rita) Aumiller and Dana (Shannon) Aumiller; daughter, Sharon Hiatt; grandchildren, Brock (Alicia) Aumiller, Kyle (Megan) Aumiller, Chris (Becky) Aumiller, Matthew (Ashley) Aumiller, Nick Aumiller, Elizabeth (David) Houser, Anna Hiatt; great grandchildren, Ben and Grace Aumiller, Courtney Aumiller, Ashlee and Walter Aumiller, and a little one on the way.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Lois; his brother, Carl Aumiller; and his sister, Willadean McElwee.
There will be a Victory Celebration for Francis at Trinity Church of the Nazarene, 1108 Daniel Ave, Springfield, IL with Pastor Ron Waltrip on September 9, 2017 at 2:30 pm.
In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made in Francis' honor to Trinity Church of the Nazarene, 1108 Daniel Ave. Springfield, IL 62702.