October 7, 1951 - January 25, 2021
Howard Donald Schou, 69, passed away on January 25, 2021 at Perry Memorial Hospital. He had boldly faced major health issues the last two years, even surviving COVID-19 this past fall, but his passing was unexpected. He had been making a good recovery, with the intention of playing golf and fishing with his buddies this spring. Howard was born on October 7, 1951 at DeKalb Public Hospital, DeKalb, IL as the first child to the parents of Donald and Betty Jean (Friestead) Schou. His family lived in DeKalb until he was 10 years old and moved to Rollo, IL, so that his dad could join his father in farming the Schou farmland. While in DeKalb, Howard and his younger brother, Gary, played the accordion and took tap dancing lessons. They were often in recitals and played at churches. Growing up on the farm was much different, but Howard and his family loved the farm and community. Howard attended Rollo Grade School where he met his future wife, Patricia (Patty) Svendsen, who was a year younger and shared the same two-grade classroom. Howard enjoyed sports at an early age, playing basketball at 10 years old and singing in the school and church choirs. He loved music and when he got his first transistor radio, he could listen to WLS. Howard attended Shabbona High School, Shabbona, IL where he excelled in basketball and cross country and continued with music through band and school choir. He was the senior class president and an officer in several school clubs, 4-H, and church youth group. His high school basketball teams won many tournaments, including the Little 10 Conference, and could beat the big city basketball teams, too. Howard won several cross-country and track medals and was a softball pitcher and first baseman. In the summer, his family loved to camp with neighborhood friends, having many laughs and sharing good stories around the campfire. When he was not working on the farm with his dad and brothers, he had an old Rambler car and had many crazy times with his high school buddies, clearly representing well the class of 1969. Howard attended Iowa State University, graduating in 1973 with an agriculture business degree. He originally was a pre-vet major but changed his major to ag business as college life was fun. He met many good friends at Iowa State and attended all their football and basketball games. Howard played intramural softball and basketball. He was asked to try out for the Cyclone Basketball Team but missed the tryouts because of an exam. Howard had a good jump shot and had grown to 6’4”. Cargill, Inc./Nutrena Feed Division hired Howard right out of college into its professional sales force and quickly moved him into plant management as a trainee at its Minneapolis Plant and then to the Peoria Plant the fall of 1973. That provided the opportunity for Howard to reconnect with his future wife, Patty, who was in the nursing program at Illinois Wesleyan University, Bloomington, IL, just a few travel miles from Peoria. When Patty graduated in May 1974, he proposed in front of her family at celebration dinner in Bloomington. That summer, Howard was transferred to Sioux City, IA, and they were married in October 1974, making Sioux City their first home. While in Sioux City, Howard held his first plant supervisor job and Patty began her nursing career as a cardiac care nurse. They both learned how to golf and bought their first boat, spending many hours on the Missouri River with Iowa friends. In the fall of 1976, Howard was asked to lead the Princeton Nutrena Feed Plant on Backbone Road. Patty and Howard packed their bags and moved to Princeton buying their first house in Birdhaven. Princeton proved to be ideal as both their families lived an hour away, and Patty was able to work at Perry Memorial Hospital. Their first son, Chad, was born in May 1977 and their second son, Justin in March 1980. As plant manager, Howard quickly became involved with community activities, especially with the Princeton Jaycees Chapter in 1977. He won several Jaycees Community Service Awards and served as chapter president and advanced to district and state officer. He was instrumental in establishing several local chapters and developed many wonderful Jaycees’ friendships cherished still today. Howard received a lifetime Jaycees International Senate membership in 1982 for service and leadership. Howard and Patty were involved together in school and community organizations, golf leagues, Country Club, and the Homestead Festival Steering Committee from 1992-1994. He played softball on the church league and intramural basketball, too. He and several friends won the local Buick Scramble for Bureau Valley Country Club in 2003, and he was invited to play in the national Buick Scramble Tournament in Florida. They joined Hampshire Colony Congregational Church where Howard served in various positions, Board of Trustees, building committee, treasurer, and co-moderator the past four years. Howard was appointed to the Bureau County Board in May 1995 and then to the Bureau County Circuit Clerk position in July 1995, where he served until 1996. During his time as the Circuit Clerk, he obtained his certified public accountant license and went to work for Clifton Larson Allen in Princeton, after leaving his circuit clerk post in November 1996. He was hired in 1998 by Agrium, Henry, IL as its accountant; and when the plant closed in 2002, he became the accountant for a plumbing corporation near Sugar Grove for two years. Since Howard enjoyed the political scene, he was elected to the Bureau County Board in 2000 and resigned later in 2004 to become a hospital chief financial officer for Boyd Healthcare Services, Carrollton, IL. He really enjoyed the hospital financial business world working for Boyd Healthcare Services, Franklin Hospital, and then Mendota Community Hospital during a 10- year period. He officially retired in 2014 and was highly respected for his financial acumen and leadership. He always had a positive attitude and enjoyed life and parties. Patty and Howard hosted many parties and celebrations for family and friends. In addition, Howard had great times with his fishing and golfing buddies and took many unbelievable trips to Canada to catch those big fish! They have a cabin in southern Illinois and often spent time with family and friends boating on Rend Lake and even doing some waterskiing. He loved having a glass of wine by their pool in the summer and taking care of their two dogs, Molly and Ruby. Patty and Howard did a lot of traveling and made several trips to Cyprus to visit their son Chad and family and took extra time to visit Norway, Italy, Greece, and even Abu Dhabi as well as family trips to Caribbean destinations, Mexico, Canada, and throughout the US. He bought a white Volkswagen Convertible in 2019 for fun and a nice summer ride. He was proud of his sons, heritage and appreciated very much his family, friends, church, and work friends as that made his life special. Howard is survived by his wife, Patty (Pat) Schou and their two sons, Chad (Yiota Tsokkou), Country of Cyprus, and Justin, Champaign, IL, and blessed with two beautiful granddaughters, Maria Patricia and Andrea Rebecca of Cyprus, and three brothers and their families, Gary (Cheri) Schou, Van Nuys, CA, Roger (Pam) Schou, Brevard, NC, and David (Becky) Schou, Junction, IL. He was preceded in death by his parents, Betty and Donald Schou, and grandparents, Berta and Elmer Schou and Arthur and Anna Friestead. Visitation will be Saturday, February 6, 2021 from 10 am to 12 pm, with funeral services following the visitation at Hampshire Colony Congregational Church, 604 S. Church Street, Princeton. Rev. Karl Johnson will officiate the service, with Rev. Kent Svendsen serving as soloist. Interment will conclude at Oakland Cemetery, Princeton. Masks and social distancing will be in effect. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Hampshire Colony Congregational Church, Princeton. Online condolences and memorials may be directed to www.norbergfh.com Arrangements by Norberg Memorial Home, Inc. & Monuments.
Howard Donald Schou, 69, passed away on January 25, 2021 at Perry Memorial Hospital. He had boldly faced major health issues the last two years, even surviving COVID-19 this past fall, but his passing was unexpected. He had been making a good... View Obituary & Service Information
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