We will update the list of names of our deceased warriors on a monthly basis. We will not place a person on this list with hearsay, second hand, information. Send us a link to the obituary, noting the date and name of the newspaper from which it was taken. If you don't have the obit, then you must be related to, or a close friend who attended the wake, funeral or memorial service.

November 2023

Karen Rieck '83
Michael Taylor '70
Thomas DeBreau '84
Kenneth Artner '67

Karen Rieck - Class '83
Karen Elizabeth Rieck, age 58, of Chicago and Des Plaines, Illinois passed away November 11, 2023. Beloved wife of Ronald J. Banks. Loving mother of Lucas (Zoe Schmidt) Banks. Adoring dog-mom to Spot. Cherished sister of Susan (Joel) Finkle, Barbara (John) Malm, and Linda (Paul) Riportella. Dear aunt to many nieces and nephews. Karen was born May 25, 1965 in Chicago, Illinois to the late William C. and the late Shirley V. (nee Ilg) Rieck. She grew up in Des Plaines, as her family were long-time residents. They owned and operated Rieck’s Ace Hardware in Park Ridge where Karen worked for many years as a manager. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a Business Degree, however she made her career in teaching. Karen has worked for the Chicago Public Schools for almost 30 years. She was a reading specialist and has taught thousands of kids to read over the years. Nature was a major part of Karen's life and is where she spent as much of her time as she could. She enjoyed going to Lake Geneva and gave support to a local non-profit, the Norman B. Barr Camp in Williams Bay. Adventuring, road-tripping and spending time in nature, most often barefoot, was where she was happiest. Most of all, she loved her family and will be greatly missed by everyone she knew. A visitation will be held Wednesday, November 15, from 3:00 pm until the time of service at 6:00 pm at G.L. Hills Funeral Home, 745 Graceland Avenue, Des Plaines, Illinois. In lieu of flowers, memorials in Karen's name may be made to the World Wildlife Fund, 1250 Twenty-Fourth Street, N.W., P.O. Box 97180, Washington, DC 20090-7180. Funeral care provided by G.L. Hills Funeral Home and Cremation Center. For information, please call 847-699-9003 or visit

Michael Taylor - Class '70
Michael E. Taylor, 71 a long time resident of Wilmington Island, GA, passed away on November 6, 2023 at his home. Michael was born June 7, 1952, in Chicago, the son of the late Henry and Julia (nee Jackson) Taylor. Raised in Des Plaines, IL, and attended Maine West High School where he met his wife, Laura (nee Moellenkamp) Taylor. They made a home in Des Plaines where they raised their son Jason Taylor. During this time, he was Cub Master of the Year for Pack 14 where he helped grow the Cub Scout Troop to the largest in Illinois. He and his family moved to Brunswick, GA in 1990, where he opened a service station. He had a passion for music and playing the drums, enjoyed the company of family and friends, and enjoyed riding his motorcycle and attending Bike Week, as well as watching Nascar, football, baseball, and golf. Michael retired from International Paper, Savannah, GA in 2017. Michael is survived by his wife, Laura Taylor, and son, Jason Taylor; as well as his sisters Pamela Taylor-Herdzina and Cynthia Klein, his Aunt Helen (nee Taylor) Schultz, many cousins, nieces, and nephews. He was preceded in death by his sister Deborah Taylor.

Thomas DeBreau - Class '84
Thomas Charles DeBreau, age 57, of Phoenix, Arizona, passed away on November 13, 2023. Tom was a graduate of Maine West High School in Des Plaines, Illinois, a proud US Navy Veteran and an active member of the Civil Air Patrol since 1997. Tom was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease in 2017, and was only recently found to be terminally ill (Stage 4 cancer). He was preceded in death by his parents, Robert and Miriam (Mimi) DeBreau and is survived by his brother, Kenneth (Patricia) DeBreau of Gurnee, Illinois, as well as nephews John DeBreau (Gurnee, Illinois) and Michael DeBreau (Austin, Texas). Visitation will be held Monday, November 27, 2023 from 3:00 pm until 7:00 pm at G.L. HillsFuneral Home, 745 Graceland Avenue, Des Plaines, Illinois. A funeral Mass will be held Tuesday, November 28, 2023 at 10:00 am at St. Stephen Protomartyr Church, 1280 Prospect Ave., Des Plaines, Illinois. Interment in All Saints Cemetery, Des Plaines, Illinois. In lieu offlowers, donations in Thomas' name should be made to the Disabled American Veterans (DAV), Funeral care provided by G.L. Hills Funeral Home. For information, please call 847-699-9003 or visit

Kenneth Artner - Class '67
Kenneth “Ken” F. Artner, 74, of Crystal Lake, IL passed away November 24, 2023 at Journey Care Hospice in Barrington, IL. He was born on July 25, 1949 in Hinsdale, IL to the late Frank and Ruth Artner. He was raised in Des Plaines, IL., graduating from Maine West High School, class of 1967. After graduation, Ken enlisted in the United States Navy. He served on the USS Ranger aircraft carrier as an air traffic controller and served in the Philippines during the Vietnam War. After his honorable discharge, Ken went on to pursue his bachelor’s degree in management from the University of Illinois. On July 2, 1978, Ken married Patricia Spieker in Toledo, Ohio. Ken is survived by his wife, Pat, and two children, Meghann (Lewis) Shutan and Ryan (Rebecca) Artner. He is further survived by his beautiful granddaughters whom he treasured dearly, Raelynn, Rylee, Reese and Rose Artner and Emilynn Shutan and another precious grandchild on the way. Ken is also survived by his sister Carol (the late Richard) Klass as well as many cherished sisters- and brothers-in-law, cousins, nieces, nephews and dear, dear friends. We will miss everything about you and we will cherish all of the memories we made together. A piece of you will forever live on in each of us. A memorial mass will be held on Monday, December 4, 2023 at 10am at St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church, 451 W Terra Cotta Ave, Crystal Lake. Interment will be private. In lieu of flowers, Ken’s family asks you to please consider a donation in Ken’s name to either Tunnel to Towers Foundation, 2361 Hylan Boulevard, Staten Island, NY 10306 , Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758516, Topeka, Kansas 66675-8516, or St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105,, charities close to Ken’s heart.