Valgene Gould, 84, a resident of Energy, Illinois and a native of Johnson County Illinois, passed away Monday morning, March 18, 2013, at 2:10 a.m. at the Herrin Hospital.
Valgene was born May 16, 1928 in Johnson County. He was the son of Audis L. and Faye (Newton) Gould.
Valgene was united in marriage to Gertrude “GiGi” Johnson on December 9, 1946 at the Johnson County Courthouse in Vienna. She survives.
Other survivors include a daughter, Brenda Rea and her husband Robert of Benton, a son, D. Michael Gould and his wife Jody of Energy, three grandchildren, Michael “Cole” Gould and his wife Lesley of Energy, Scarlett Rea Lyons and her husband Kenny of Florence, AL, and Hilary Rea Remm and her husband Paul of Benton, five great grandchildren, Adeline and Emmalise Lyons, Sarah Hope Lyons, Ariadne Remm and Teresa Pender.
His parents, an infant grandson, Robert Jefferson Rea, two brothers, J.D. Gould and Robert J. Gould and an infant brother preceded him in death.
Valgene attended the Tall Tree Grade School and the Vienna High School. Valgene had a strong work ethic. His family remembers him best for being paid, at the age of nine years, the same wage as his father, Audis, when he assisted neighbors with farm.
Valgene served in the U.S. Army. Following his honorable discharge, Valgene worked in area ordnance plants as a welder. He later was employed by Knutt Aronson, a general contractor, and worked on a number of building projects including the construction of the Herrin Swimming Pool. Valgene became a general contractor and was an Illinois licensed plumber. He developed Gould Subdivision and later built and operated the Green Acres Golf Course at Energy. Valgene, along with his family, operated the course until his retirement and sale of the course in 2004.
Valgene loved the game of golf and was a member of the Southern Illinois Golf Association. Over the years, he sponsored numerous sports teams and particularly enjoyed supporting and participating in various bowling leagues. Valgene loved to travel and loved motorcycling. He was a dedicated “Ford” man and approved of any piece of equipment that bore a Ford label.
Valgene was a devoted Christian and had a deep faith in God. He and his family were charter members, along with Mildred Hindman Phegley and her family, of the Herrin Church of Christ. Valgene oversaw the construction of the original church building in the early 1960’s.
Funeral services will be conducted Thursday afternoon, March 21, 2013, at 1 PM at the Herrin Church of Christ, 3101 S. Park Ave., Herrin, Illinois.
Interment will be in the Vienna Fraternal Cemetery. The Beggs-Gurley VFW Post 5222 and the Illinois National Guard Burial Honors Detail will accord military graveside rites.
Visitation will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday at the Herrin Church of Christ.
Memorials may be made to the Herrin Church of Christ, 3101 S. Park Ave., Herrin, IL 62948.