---- — James Lon “Lonnie” Hill, 66, of Ina, died at 7:05 a.m. Friday, July 12, 2013, at his home.
Mr. Hill was born on July 3, 1947, in Benton, the son of James V. Hill and Priscilla “Moni” (Miller) Hill.
Lonnie worked at Mt. Vernon for Tri-County Electric as a Jry Lineman for many years before opening his own automotive business, Classic Performance. He was a member of the I.B.E.W. Local 702 and was of the Baptist faith. Lonnie served four years in the United States Air Force as a helicopter mechanic and was also part of a rescue chopper outfit nicknamed “Pedro” during the Vietnam War. He studied automotive technology at VTI at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. He was an avid fisherman, boat and car enthusiast. He worked on a NASCAR Busch Series and Craftsman Truck Series Race Team. Wayman Harlan summed up Lonnie’s life by saying “He was a poor man’s best friend” and will be sadly missed by all.
He is survived by his twin siblings, Bradley Hill, West Frankfort and Kristin Hill (Mike) Neff, Florida; a son, James Lon Hill, II, Georgia; a niece, Lauren Monachella, Florida; and his significant other, Donna Simpkins, Ina. Donna brought much happiness into our brother’s life and was by his side when he passed away.
Mr. Hill was preceded in death by his parents.
Visitation will be from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Hobbs-Johnson Funeral Home and Crematory in Benton. A memorial service will be held at 4 p.m. Saturday at the funeral home with Brother Dale Burzynski officiating. Military honors will be performed by the Benton American Legion and V.F.W. and the Marion National Guard Honor Squad.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Ina Freewill Baptist Church, 15207 East Ina Road, Ina, IL 62846, or the American Heart Association and will be accepted at the funeral home.
Visit www.hobbsjohnson.com to sign the memorial guestbook.