Dennis Dale Worthen passed away in Wake Forest, N.C., on February 15th, 2022, after a lengthy battle with ALS. He was 79 years old.
Dennis, the son of Harold Jr. and Lois Helen (Spiller) Worthen, was born August 3rd, 1942, in Marion, Ill. He graduated from Marion High School and earned a B.S. and master’s degree from the University of Illinois.
Despite some struggles, ALS, and other health issues, Dennis’ humor, intelligence, and engaging nature never failed him. He continued to charm all of those around him throughout his devastating long-term illness.
Dennis was an avid sports fan. He especially loved watching the Green Bay Packers, the University of Illinois Illini, and the University of Kentucky Wildcats. He was a student of sports and happy to teach others about the teams, plays and strategies. Dennis had a wonderful set of friends, enjoyed playing golf, traveling, and leaf peeping. He grew up hunting waterfowl in southern Illinois which led to a hobby of collecting and carving decoys. He appreciated nature walks and could name any tree by leaf or bark pattern. He was the family spell-checker and could complete the daily Scramble from the newspaper in a flash. Dennis always, always had a book in hand and enjoyed his occasional bourbon with a splash of water.
Above all, Dennis’ children, Jeanne Puckett (Paul) of Wake Forest, N.C. and John Worthen (Pam) of Dickson, Tenn., along with his grandchildren, Jackson and Emily Puckett, and Gabrielle Worthen were his pride and joy. Their “Poppy” treasured each and would proudly share news and photos with loved ones and visitors. He was his most emotional when speaking to or about his family.
Dennis is survived by his children; grandchildren; brother Larry (Charlotte) Worthen of Livonia, Mich, former wife Barbara Worthen, of Paducah, Ky. as well as his niece and nephew, Cheri (Eric Jeske) and Scott (Renee) Worthen. A small service is planned for a later date. Memorial contributions may be made to the ALS Association.
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