Date of Birth
Date of Death
Elwood “Woody” Lange, age 87, of Elburn, passed away on July16, 2018, sur-rounded by the love and prayers of his family. Woody, named after a Cubâ€™s player, was born in Aurora, IL, on August 8, 1930, to proud parents Harry and Helen (Wilke) Lange. Growing up, Woodyâ€™s family lived upstairs in the same house as his grandparents. They had the first TV on the block and one of few in the whole city; Woody bought it for his parentsâ€™ anniversary. The TV, and the brewing of wine and beer in their basement, during the prohibition, often brought the whole neighborhood to their household. It was through all of their guests that Woody developed a love of entertaining. From an early age, food also played a huge factor in Woodyâ€™s life. At dinnertime each day Woody checked to see what his mother and grandmother were cooking and then chose the menu he liked best; which determined whether he was eating upstairs or down. Woody, and his brother Russ, were always up to something. When they were younger, their uncle sent them an alligator from Florida and they kept it in the bathtub. Whenever someone needed a bath, their “pet” was put in the sink. Woody attended St. Paull Lutheran School and East Aurora High School. At East Aurora he was involved with the 4H Club, once even keeping chickens in the garage. Woody helped his father deliver milk; one of their stops used to be one of Al Caponeâ€™s homes. After graduating, Uncle Sam called and Woody was drafted into the U.S. Army, 7th Infantry, serving during the Korean War from 1951-1953. While overseas, Woody was very fond of the young Korean boys who helped out his men in camp. Upon his return from the war, Woodyâ€™s first job was doing Advertising for Sears. He met his first wife, Janet Waldo, there and they had four children together: Terry, Todd, Trent and Tara. Sadly, Tara passed away just a few days after her birth. Terry, at the age of four, tragically died in a car accident along with Woodyâ€™s father, Harry, and Glenna Wilke, his grandmother. After Woody and Janet went their separate ways, he went to work for Sencenbaughâ€™s Department Store in management. He hired Sheila Cherry Hatch for the cosmetic department and the rest is history. Woody and Sheila were united in marriage on July 21, 1967. Shortly after they were married, they were called to work in San Antonio, TX. After five years, in 1972, they returned to make their home next to Sheilaâ€™s parents in Maple Park. They were blessed with three children: Warren, Travis and Autumn. A year later, Woody began working for the American Greeting Card Company where he remained until 2006; retiring at the age of 76. Woody absolutely loved his job there and adored the people he worked with. Woody had many hobbies. From an early age, he loved to work on cars; they were his pride and joy. In his later years, Woody built every house they lived in, from the bottom up. Through design, he drew a Frank Lloyd Wright style house. After growing up in a house that was a neighborhood gathering place, Woody developed a welcoming attitude. His door was always open, he was never too busy to talk, and everyone was welcome. No one could tell if Woody was in a bad mood because he was always so happy. When his children were growing up, though he wasnâ€™t an “animal person”, pets found their way into his home and heart. This was especially true of one little kitty that was always around to snuggle. Along with being an excellent builder, Woody was also the best handy man around. He helped with the upkeep of all their barns and helped with the gardens. Woody was even an assistant bee keeper. In his spare time, he enjoyed riding around on his John Deere tractor and doing yard work. Woody also enjoyed woodworking and was a sports fan. True to his name, Woody loved watching the Cubbies while sipping on a cold beer. Every Sunday, Woody set aside some time to listen to Pastor John Hagge. He was a big part of Woodyâ€™s life and he got to see Pastor Hagge officiate on a trip to San Antonio, TX. Sheila had to tell him to stop being so overjoyed so he could listen. As Woody got older, it was harder for him to stay at home without extra help, but because he had so many animals extra help was hard to find. He went with a friend to visit The Meadows of Franklin Grove, an assisted living residence. After one tour, it was Woodyâ€™s new home. There he was called the “King” because he made it his business to manage the home. If there was a newcomer or if someone had passed on, he was there for all of the greetings and all of the grieving. When Woody was supposed to be there for relaxing and no worries, he instead wanted to be a part of everything. Woody was especially interested in the management of the cafeteria. Being a true “foodie”, he was very involved with the cafeteria and would rewrite the menus, bringing new and better recipes that Autumn printed for him. The Meadows saw his interest and created a committee for Woody and his culinary input. He was a caregiver to everyone in his life. With the patience of a saint, Woody helped in every way he could. He could pick up on peoplesâ€™ “vibes” so easily and did everything he could to help if they were upset or stressed. Woody was a man of many talents and thoughts. He will always be remembered for his fun attitude and love for every person he was close to. Woody was a member of the Elburn American Legion, Post #630. He is survived by his loving wife of nearly 51 years, Sheila Lange; five children: Todd (Julie) Lange, Trent Lange, Warren Lange, Travis Lange and Autumn Lange; seven grandchildren: Nicole (Tim) Harrigan, Missy (Frank) Paoletti, Carrie (Ty) Bartels, Dustin (Kelly) Lange, Erica (Sean) Fenske, Breanna Lange, Jordan Lange; eight great-grandchildren: Paige Harrigan, Alyiah Lange, Brooklyn Bartels, Quinn Harrigan, Riley Harrigan, Mark Harrigan, Breyzlin Lange and Trace Bartels; a brother, Russell (Adrienne) Lange; one nephew, Kyle Lange and a countryside of friends. Woody is preceded in death by his parents, Harry and Helen Lange; two children: Terry and Tara Lange. A visitation will be held at the Lily Lake Congregation Church, 44W188 Empire Rd., St. Charles, IL 60175, from 10-12 p.m. on July 21, 2018, with a funeral service to follow at 12 p.m. Private family burial to take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in Woodyâ€™s name. Checks may be made to the “Elwood Lange Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address, the Conley Funeral Home Facebook Page, or at www.conleycare.com.
A visitation will be held at the Lily Lake Congregational Church, 44W188 Empire Rd., St. Charles, IL 60175, from 10-12p.m. on July 21, 2018,
Private family burial to take place at a later date.