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Gary Sale, 68, of Sycamore, formerly of Peru, passed away surrounded by his loving family on September 13, 2019 from complications of heart disease at Northwestern University Hospital in Chicago.
Mass of Christian burial will be 10:00 AM Friday at St. Mary's Church, 1316 6th St. in Peru with Abbot Philip Davey OSB of St. Bede officiating. Burial will follow at Valley Memorial Park Cemetery in Spring Valley. Visitation will be from 4-7:00 PM Thursday at Hurst Funeral Home, 650 Fifth St. in LaSalle. Additional visitation will be in the church at 9:00 AM Friday until time of services.
Gary was born on June 12, 1951 in LaSalle, Illinois at St. Mary’s Hospital, son of Jean C. and the late Walter "Wally" J. Sale. Gary was the first of seven children. He grew up on the family farm and had a love of farming. He is a 1969 graduate of St. Bede Academy. He was a starting lineman on the highly dominant 1968 varsity football team (8-1) that was inducted into the St. Bede Athletic Hall of Fame in 2002. After high school, Gary was admitted to Marquette University where he graduated in 1974 with a degree in Civil Engineering. Gary began his career working as a civil engineer for the Illinois Department of Transportation. Later, he became the Assistant Supervisor for Engineering and Construction for the DeKalb County Highway Department from where he retired.
Gary was a self-taught genealogist and he generated many hundreds of years of family trees of the Sale, Meyer, Schwindaman and Shortell families of his grandparents. Gary loved playing pool and was a lifelong, avid fan of the Chicago Bears. He traveled the United States to cheer on his Bears at many games. For two decades, Gary and his mother, Jean, toured the United States and the world together. When his mother no longer traveled abroad, Gary continued to travel solo. Gary was an avid collector of elephant figurines. Like the animal he admired, he was large and steadfast as well as bold when challenged.
Gary is mourned by his mother Jean (Schwindaman) Sale; his companion of many years Cheryl Maness; her sons Scott and Bradley (Lindsay) and her grandsons Zack and Kyle; his sisters, Mary Fries, Peggy (Kevin) Riley, Joanne Sale, and Kathy (Pete) Seegebrecht; his brothers Stephen (Nanci) and Michael (Debbie) Sale; his nieces and beloved Godchildren Abigail and Allison Sale; and his 11 other nieces and nephews, Matt and Jake Fries, Jeff and Kerry Sale, Stephanie, Jenny, and Nicole Sale, Colin and Caitlin Riley, and Max and Blake Seegebrecht.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to St. Bede Academy.