Duker & Haugh Funeral Home

Obituaries

Gayland Decker Blakemore

Gayland Decker Blakemore

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Gayland Decker Blakemore, on Saturday, Jan. 5, 2021, in Blessing Hospital after a courageous and hard-fought battle with COVID-19. Gayland Decker Blakemore was born on February 7, 1958, in Chicago, IL to Robert and Clara (Johnson) Blakemore, their only child.

Gayland grew up in the Southside Englewood neighborhood of Chicago with his parents and several family members. He attended Catholic schools in the neighborhood, eventually graduating from St. Joseph's Seminary in Oak Lawn, IL. This led him to Quincy University at the age of 17. Gayland obtained a Bachelor's and Master's degree which allowed him to pursue fields where he could make a difference in the lives of children and families.

The Franciscan spirit greatly influenced Gayland, as evidenced in the way he lived his life. Gayland never needed much in terms of possessions. He led by example, always giving freely and expecting nothing in return. Gayland was a very private, strong, and humble man, but he touched the lives of so many. Gayland loved Quincy and the community so much that he never left; calling Quincy his home. In his early years, he worked at JCPenny, St. Mary's Hospital in 1979, and Chaddock in 1989. At Chaddock, he met his wife, Tracie Feller, who survives.

Gayland then went on to work at the Quincy Public School Districts where he was employed as a STAR guide and Discipline Coordinator of Transportation until the time of his death. He developed and maintained many lifelong friendships from his places of employment that he cherished throughout the years.

Everyone who knew Gayland knew how much he loved working with children. Gayland coached his children in all their sports but he loved basketball and shared his love of the sport with many.
Gayland started the Q-City Magic traveling basketball program with Michael "Magic" Rudd as the first coach of the program. Gayland continued this program for over 20 years, coaching youth from Illinois, Iowa, and Missouri. He saw potential in every one of his players and felt everyone had a role, regardless of talent.

Gayland always thought his greatest accomplishment in his life was his family. He loved his children fiercely, they were involved in all aspects of his life. He leaves to carry on his memory: his mother, Clara Blakemore of Chicago, his wife, Tracie Feller of Quincy, children, Miles Feller-Blakemore (fiancé-Katherine(Katie) Miller) of St. Louis, Maliah Feller-Blakemore (significant other-Kamrein Street), Masen Feller-Blakemore, and Murphy Chintrell "Trell" Feller-Blakemore all of Quincy, IL.
Additional survivors of Gayland are his two brothers-in-law and their families, Mark and Dan Feller, several nieces, nephews, cousins, and family of the Chicago and Tennessee area.

He was preceded in death by his father, Robert Blakemore, his maternal and paternal grandparents, Kenneth "Moochie" Pollard, his best friend who he considered a brother, Kenny Johnson, a special cousin, and his mother-in-law Donna Grandgeorge.

Sleep well gentle soul. Your love and strong spirit will sustain us always. You are at peace. You will be missed.

A public visitation for Gayland will be held at the Ambiance (5225 Kochs Ln, Quincy, IL 62305) on Monday, Jan. 11 from 4-7 p.m. Masks are mandatory and all attendees must remain socially distant. A private service will be held.

In lieu of flowers memorials can be made to the family and will be used for future charitable acts in the community.
Service arrangements are in care of Duker & Haugh Funeral Home.
Online condolences may be left at https://www.dukerandhaugh.com/services

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Condolences

From:
Nancy Ebbert
Quincy, IL
Comments:
I’m heartbroken at the loss. Gayland was so gifted when it came to working with children. He touched the lives of so many kids- changing lives for the better. He will be greatly missed. May you find comfort in knowing he influenced so many in this community. God Bless
From:
Marcia Ryan
Quincy, IL
Comments:
Tracie,
My deepest condolences to you and your kids. Gayland was a great person and father and such a loss to the community. Sending you all prayers!
From:
Vivian Wires
Quincy, IL
Comments:
Praying for the Family. Such a great man to have known. Memories to treasure forever.
From:
Stephen M. Ruszkowski
Oswego, IL
Comments:
I knew Gayland from high school. He was a strong but kind man who was admired by all of us at St. Joe's. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.
From:
Angela Barnes
QUINCY, IL
Comments:
To a wonderful man who touched the lives of so many. You coached basketball with our daughter Maddy back in the day. On behalf of the Barnes Family, we thank you for guiding our youth. Prayers to the Blakemore Family. Blessings.
From:
MICHAEL L HAYNES
Wilmington, DE
Comments:
With Deepest Sympathy. You will be missed buddy.
From:
Debbie Russell n Shianna Reddick
Payson, IL
Comments:
My heart is heavy What a great man he loved everybody n found good n all . U touched many lifes Mr. Blakemore n u touched mine n Shiannas life u took everyone fillings on as your own . Thank you for all you have done for my family as well as many . You was truely loved n will b missed dearly . Rest easy Mr. Blakemore ❤ī¸đŸ’”☚ī¸đŸ˜­
From:
Gina Strader
quincy, IL
Comments:
Gayland was beacon in the lives of many, including myself. He was a great leader, teacher, mentor and friend. I remember great times listening to his extensive music collection, gruelling workouts and games such as Bid Whiz, Backgammon and Othello. He always said "life is like a journey on a train, how much richer the experience is when shared rather than to sit alone" My sincere condolences to his family....Rest well my friend
From:
Vicki Sandercock
Quincy, IL
Comments:
Gayland was a kind, loving man who saw good in all people. I am honored to have known him and will cherish the wonderful memories I carry. My heartfelt condolences go out to all who knew him - especially to his beautiful family. The indelible mark he leaves on the community, friends, and the lives of countless people he served will be with us always. This man was truly loved and respected by all who were lucky to know him.
From:
Gregory Williams
Cedar Hill, TX
Comments:
I was a childhood friend of Gayland. He and I grew up together in Chicago. We went to St. Carthage where we first discovered our talent in Basketball. We were the two best friends that went to St. Joseph Franciscan Seminary in Oakbrook for 4 years together. I wanted to reconnect with my dear friend when I found out he was sick. I want to extend my condolences to the Blakemore family. Tho I now live in Dallas, Tx. I will always be his friend. I am deeply sorry for your loss. To his mother, God bless you and I will try to get to see you as soon as I can. God bless the entire family and be with you in this time of sorrow and loss.
From:
Kevin O’Malley
Naples, FL
Comments:
Tracie,
My deepest condolences to you and your family. I will pray for all of you during this time. I knew Gayland from the seminary and developed a love for sports and team work as I watched him play basketball. May Jesus comfort you and bless you all with His peace.
From:
Mary Kennedy-Moore
Springfield, IL
Comments:
Tracy words can not express the loss you and your family are going thru. You’re in my prayers. Love 💕 you my friend. Mary
From:
Samantha Chaplin
Quincy, IL
Comments:
I am so heartbroken. You were a great mentor to me. I will always remember you
From:
Tara Althoff
Quincy, IL
Comments:
No words can express my deepest sympathy Tracy for you and your family. I met Gayland in my days in Sass while he worked at Chaddock. He always had a smile on his face and brought joy and humor to so many. So sorry for your loss.
From:
Sondi Miller
Quicy, IL
Comments:
I met Garland in a aerobic competition we both were in. He beat me, I got 2nd. He went on to train me for a couple of other competitions. We then had sons the same age and traveled with basketball. Later we worked together as he put on shows for the Baldwin kids for assemblies. What a good guy. Tracie and family I hope your heart feels the love from this community he served so well, God Bless you. Love Sondi
From:
Judy Abbott
Quincy, IL
Comments:
I met Gayland when he was working at Chaddock. He was such a gentle and progressed spirit. Rest In Peace.
From:
Jerry Haynes
HOFFMAN ESTATES, IL
Comments:
God. family and friends were the priorities of Gayland I had the pleasure and privilege of attending grade school at St Carthage Grade School in Chicago and my first year of high school at St Joseph s Franciscan Seminary in Oakbrook IL May God comfort his family and all who loved him . Rest dear friend we will see you again.
From:
Christine Horman
Quincy, IL
Comments:
Worked with Gayland at Chaddock, His kindness and spirit were contagious, he loved life and everyone around him, rest easy my friend
From:
Vincent Head
Bolingbrook, IL
Comments:
I met Gayland when we attended St. Carthage grade school in Chicago where we became close friends. We attended St Joseph's high school together and then we both attended Quincy College. That's what it was known as back then. We were dorm roommates Gaylands first year there. We also shared an apartment after college. Gayland tried to teach me to play tennis one summer. That was probably the only thing that Gayland was unable to do through no fault of his own. When I moved from Quincy we both had successful jobs and families and didn't keep in touch as much as we wanted, but there has never been a doubt in my mind that if I ever needed anything at anytime I knew that Gayland would do what he could. My condolences to Tracie and their children, to Gayland's mom and to both families. Gayland you will be missed. Rest in Heaven.
From:
schuyler traughber
gloucester, MA
Comments:
Nothing but great memories of my cousin, Gayland. Rest in peace.
From:
Katie Peyton
Quincy, IL
Comments:
I got the pleasure of being a rider at transportion with this awesome man. He loved his job the people that worked there he never treated anybody different. He had a heart of gold and welcomed you with open arms. It is a tragic that this awful pandemic ended his place on this earth. Noone can or will be able to do the job you did. Thank you for giving me the pleasure of getting to know you rest in peace. And my heart goes out to his wife and kids your husband and father was an wonderful person so sorry for your loss.
From:
Carol Rankin
Quincy, IL
Comments:
I got to know, respect and count Gayland as a friend when we worked together at Chaddock. He was a great role model and teacher for students and staff alike. We could always count on his gentle but firm counsel in any situation. He will be missed by his family, his friends and his community. Cherish the memories.
From:
Emily Mast
Quincy, IL
Comments:
My condolences go towards you, your kids and family. Although I didnt know Gayland for long, the time that I spent with him while he was working at the previous Baldwin school was enjoyable. He gave me some of my best memories from those 3 years of school. He cared so deeply for not only his family but all of the people in the community. He always showed up with a smile on his face, and that smile was a contagious as can be. May he rest in peace. ❤
From:
Lori Crim
Hannibal, MO
Comments:
Gayland I only knew you for a short time. You my friend were such a trooper through your Covid 19 fight. You got here with boxing gloves on!!! We asked you to do so many things to help you and you did all that we asked of you. Rest in peace and fly high dear Gayland. You WILL be missed and you were loved by many.
From:
Wendell Bias
Taylor, MO
Comments:
Mr.Blakemore was a great man; he always disciplined me at school and made me a better person! I’m sorry for you guys loss; he will be missed truly!
From:
Catherine Marie Webb
Quincy, IL
Comments:
To one of my best and dearest friends from here until eternity. A better friend one could never have. My soul brother my confidante always. To the best working partner ever. We turned soo many situations in the right direction, There will never be one more talented working with kids and adults. His beautiful smile his beatiful spirit. You and Gretchen will always be my Northstar. Until we see each other on the flipside save me a seat....Love Cathi
From:
Jean Rees
Quincy, IL
Comments:
I am so saddened to hear of Gayland's death. I remember how openly you both opened your home to Trell. There is no sorrow like losing a husband and father. May you find peace in your memories and know that people are praying for you.
From:
Michael Creek
Quincy, IL
Comments:
Gayland had an infectious spirit for life. He was definitely an inspiration. He will definitely be missed. Pat and I send our thoughts and prayers to his family. Love the Creeks.
From:
Megan Douglas
Broken Arrow, OK
Comments:
I worked with Gayland almost 9 years at Baldwin. What stands out the most is how he saw the potential in kids others wanted to write off so quickly. He gave several in my class leadership opportunities who I'm sure others wouldn't have. It was amazing to see these kids rise to his high expectations. I have no doubt we are all better people because of his influence. My sympathy to his family and all his other friends.
From:
St. Mary Hospital "Then and Now" Community
Quincy, IL
Comments:
Remembering Gayland as he walked the halls of St. Mary Hospital leaving his footprint in the St. Mary Hospital legacy. Sending our sympathy in thoughts and prayers.