Lester Lee Starr, 93, of rural Hamilton, died at Blessing Hospital in Keokuk, Iowa, on Saturday, March 27, 2021. He was born April 12, 1927, the oldest son of S. Cleophus Starr and Florence Bolton Starr. He attended country grade schools for eight years and graduated from Hamilton High School in 1945.
Lester served in the U.S. Army in Europe from 1945-47. Following his service, he returned home and began a lifelong farming career in the rural Hamilton/Nauvoo area, working with his brother, nephew and great nephew. Lester was an integral part of the harvest crew running the grain cart until his 90th year.
He was married on February 10, 1977, to Shirley Thomas who proceeded him in death in 2008.
Lester was a member of the American Legion, the VFW, I00F, and Illinois Corn Huskers Association. He was an Illinois Corn Huskers member and a 2001 Hall of Fame inductee. He also was a Nauvoo State Bank director since 1966. He was one of the original founders of Western Illinois Threshers and served in many leadership roles with this organization. He enjoyed traveling domestically and abroad.
In addition to his wife, he was proceeded in death by his parents, two brothers Dean Starr, Lloyd Starr and sister-in-law Virginia Starr. He is survived by one brother Harold (Joyce) Starr of Carthage, sister-in-law Marge Starr of Knoxville, TN. Nine nieces and nephews: Ron (Patti) Starr of Nauvoo, IL, Karen (Clark) Taylor of Missoula, MT, Ann (Larry) Firkins of Dewey, IL, Maria (Kevin) Elam of Knoxville, TN, Jean Starr of Hamilton, IL, Keith (Joann) Starr of Charles City, IA, Linda Starr of Mt Pleasant, SC, Martha (Neal) Miller of Nashville, TN, and Jodi (Brian) Miller of Ankeny, IA; and caretaker Cindy Neff.
Services will be held on Saturday, April 3, 2021, at 11 am at Printy Funeral Home in Hamilton, with Mark Hanson officiating. For those unable to attend, the service will be livestreamed at www.printyfuneralhome.com. Visitation will be held from 9:30 am until the funeral service. Interment with military honors rendered by the Hancock County Honor Guard will be at Oak Grove Cemetery in Hamilton, IL.
Memorials may be made to Oak Grove Cemetery, Western Illinois Threshers or Great River Honor Guard.
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