David Clemmons, a longtime resident of Harrisburg, IL, whose service to the community extended across multiple organizations, died on Sunday, Jan 28, 2024, at his home in Oakland, CA. David was born on December 10, 1938, in Tuscaloosa, AL, to Ballard and Margaret Lenox Clemmons. He graduated from Tuscaloosa High School before enrolling at The University of Alabama. He then served in the Army for two years.
While stationed in Colorado Springs, he went skiing with his Army buddies and at a favorite after-ski gathering place he met Lynda Barnes, who was teaching language arts at Lakewood Junior High in Denver. The two were married in 1961 and moved to Salt Lake City, where David completed his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering at the University of Utah. In 1965, the couple moved to Lynda’s hometown of Harrisburg, and David began a partnership with his father-in-law, George Barnes. David ran his construction company out of an office at Barnes Lumber Company, which had been established by Lynda’s great-grandfather in 1898. David finally fully retired in 2022, the year he moved with his wife to California to be near their children.
In addition to his career building homes, hotels, mines, and other structures as well as teaching in the building trades program at Southeastern Illinois College and eventually managing the family farm, David served on the board of Harrisburg Medical Center for 32 years, the board of the First National Bank for six years, and was a deacon and elder of the First Presbyterian Church. As a member of Kiwanis International for over 50 years, David supported the Kiwanis softball and baseball program and was instrumental in bringing youth soccer to Harrisburg. An avid pilot who flew his own small airplanes, even surviving a terrible crash when the propeller fell off, David served for many years on the board of the Harrisburg-Raleigh Airport. He was a tireless supporter of his beloved adopted hometown of Harrisburg. After moving to Oakland, David continued to volunteer by serving as Vice President of the Residents Council at Merrill Gardens, Rockridge.
A devoted husband and father, David was a friend to everyone he met. He maintained long friendships over the course of his life, and made many great new friends in the year and a half he lived in Oakland. He was known for his optimism and kind heart.
David is survived by his wife, Lynda; his three children and their partners, Dallas and Beth Clemmons of Lake Forest, CA, Melinda Clemmons Blackorby and Jose Blackorby of Oakland, CA, Alisa Barnes and Christine Pirrone of Oakland, CA; four grandchildren, George Clemmons, Eliza and Alice Blackorby, and Loula Barnes; his sister and brother-in-law Margaret and Wayne Anderson; his sister- and brother-in-law Bea and Bob Luce; and many cousins as well as nieces and nephews. In addition to his parents and in-laws, David was preceded in death by his sister Virginia Alexander.
The family would like to acknowledge with gratitude the wonderful care David received from the staff at Merrill Gardens, Rockridge, in his final days.
A celebration of David’s life will be held at 11am on April 6, 2024, at the First Presbyterian Church in Harrisburg. A reception directly following the service will be held in the Annex next door to the church. The family asks that anyone wishing to make a donation in David’s honor consider the First Presbyterian Church of Harrisburg or Kiwanis International. Arrangements in care of the J. M. Weirauch Funeral Home in Harrisburg, Illinois.
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Harrisburg, IL 62946