memories of Orville Backens and his family from 1909-2011
Orville A. Backens, 101, went to meet his heavenly Father on Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2011. He passed away in his home, with his family by his side.
Born Sept. 1, 1909, in Reinbeck, Iowa, the son of Carl and Bertha (Stephens) Backens. Married Lucy Crooks in 1933; they shared 701/2 years together before she passed in 2004. Orville was a graduate of Gates Business College in Waterloo, Iowa, with a degree in accounting. He then worked for Mid Continent Oil Co. before being drafted to serve in the U.S. Navy in World War II, after which he returned to the homestead farm in Reinbeck. He dairy farmed in Wisconsin for many years before returning to Waterloo and came to Rockford in 1981 to retire.
He was one of the first to live in Christian Life Retirement Center, where he lived for 29 years. In all of the churches he attended, he was very active, serving on boards and doing accounting, and he was a Sunday school superintendent and an orchestra member. Orville enjoyed reading, puzzles, cars, golf and watching sports on TV.
Survivors include sons, Larry and Terry (Phyllis) Backens, both of Rockford; daughters, Peggy (David) Bargren of Cherry Valley, Connie Rozier of Ocala, Fla., Linda (John) Lanferman of St. Louis and Sherry (Dennis) Emenecker of Pecatonica; 12 grandchildren; 29 great-grandchildren; brother, Kenneth (Bettie) Backens of Waterloo; two great-great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews. Predeceased also by brothers and sisters; grandson, Kevin; and sons-in-law, Jim Rozier and Don Heidt.
The family would like to thank Christian Life Retirement Center on Mulford Road and its directors, John and Lari Diehl, and staff; caregiver, Enhkbat (Ebby) Viktor; and Hospice Care of America.
Service at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 22, in Rockford First, 5950 Spring Creek Road, with visitation from 10:15 a.m. to service time; Pastor Bob Taylor will officiate. Graveside services at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 23, in Reinbeck Cemetery, Reinbeck.