Richard F. Bonelli

Born: Mon., Sep. 11, 1944
Died: Fri., Feb. 26, 2016

Scattering of ashes at sea

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Mr. Richard F. Bonelli, age 71, of Mattoon, IL, formerly of Robinson, IL, was found dead, of unexplained causes, Friday February 26, 2016 in a motel in Mattoon, IL.  The Coles County Coroner’s Office is handling the investigation.  

Richard Francis Bonelli Jr. was born September 11, 1944 in Evansville, Indiana, the son of Judy Bonelli of Chloride, Arizona and Bill Wright of Seminole, Oklahoma. He was an honors graduate of Robinson High School in 1962 and Rose Polytechnic Institute in Terre Haute, Indiana in 1966. For most of his working life he was employed by Marathon Oil Company as a Chemical Engineer at the Robinson refinery, later being transferred to Findlay, Ohio and subsequently to Laplace, Louisiana. After an early retirement he traveled and enjoyed himself before returning to the industry in 2008 concluding his employment with CVR Energy in Coffeyville, Kansas as a consulting engineer.

He is survived by his daughter, Buffi Bonelli of Rantoul, Illinois, his brother, Gregg Bonelli of Robinson, Illinois and three grandchildren, Lestat, Heaven, and Chase, all of Rantoul. He is also survived by a half-brother, Tony Bonelli, and half-sister, Kristi Bonelli. In his lifetime, he was philanthropic to a number of groups and individuals including over 30 foster children whom he assisted with educational expenses and other needs.  While at Oxford University in 2006, he co-founded “Champions of Justice” a nonprofit corporation that provides assistance to worthy causes.

He was an Elder of the First Presbyterian Church of Coffeyville, Kansas and had been a founding member of the Robinson High School Academic Foundation, a National Champion motorcycle racer and an Eagle Scout with Troop 901. His wit and humor will be missed by all who knew him. He passed away two years after a stroke had forced him to stop working at a refinery, which is what he enjoyed most in life. As he wished, his cremated remains will be scattered into the ocean at Daytona Beach, Florida. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to “Champions of Justice” P.O. Box 8518, Robinson, Il 62454.  

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Barbara Murray Kipple
   Posted Tue March 01, 2016
So sorry to hear. Richard was a very dear friend to me. May his soul rest in peace in the arms of Our Father in Heaven. We shall see him again. Love and prayers to his family.

Norma L. Bonelli-Zook
   Posted Thu March 03, 2016
To my dearest husband of 14 years; father of my daughter and dear friend for over 50 years. Enjoyed time I spent with you on this earth and look forward to seeing you in God's Kingdom.

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