Eugene F. ‘Gene’ O’Connell

By on June 5, 2014

Eugene F. “Gene” O’Connell, 87, of Mt. Vernon, Ill., died Friday, May 30, 2014, at his home in Mt. Vernon.

He was born Saturday, July 17, 1926, in Kane County, the son of Edward F. and Jessie Grace (Brackett) O’Connell. He married Gertrude A. Bebar on Sept. 15, 1951, in Aurora.

Gene was a career military serviceman in the U.S. Air Force for 27 years. After retirement, he was a teacher at Special School District of St. Louis County, and he was a member of St. Mary Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Mt. Vernon.

He is survived by his wife, Gertrude A. O’Connell of Mt. Vernon; four children, Gael O’Connell of Mt. Vernon, Katherine Newnam and husband Stan of Mt. Vernon, Eugene O’Connell II and wife May of Palmdale, Calif., and Robin M. O’Connell of De Soto, Mo.; four grandchildren, Kyle Newnam and wife Roberta of Clinton, Ill., Tanya McCarty and husband Mike of Muscatine, Iowa, Douglas Morgan Jr. of De Soto, Mo., and Jessie O’Connell of Palmdale; three great-grandchildren, Theodore Newnam, Katherine Franker and John Newnam; brother, Edward O’Connell and wife, Janice of Sugar Grove; and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; one brother, Hugh “Bud” O’Connell; and two sisters, Julia Touvell and Mary K. Voss.

Memorial Mass was held on Wednesday at St. Mary Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Mt. Vernon, with the Very Reverend Father John Iffert officiating. Interment of cremated remains will be at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery in St. Louis with full military honors.

Mr. O’Connell will be cremated. Friends and family gathered on Wednesday at St. Mary Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Mt. Vernon.

For those who wish to do so, memorials may be given to the St. Mary Immaculate Conception Catholic Church or to Angels on Assignment and will be accepted at the funeral home or mailed to Hughey Funeral Home, P.O. Box 721, Mt. Vernon, IL 62864.

Arrangements have been entrusted to the care of Hughey Funeral Home, where you may call (618) 242-3348 or visit for further information and to send condolences.