John “Bill” Elben 86 of Belton, MO, formerly of Shelbyville, IL, was called to his eternal home at 4:30 PM Saturday April 9, 2011 at his residence in Carnegie Village in Belton, MO.

A graveside service will be held at 11:00 AM Friday April 22, 2011 in Glenwood Cemetery, Shelbyville.Jeffrey Storm, minister at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Shelbyville, will officiate.Visitation will be from 10:00 AM Friday until time of the graveside at Lockart-Green Funeral Home in Shelbyville.Military rites will be performed by the Shelby County Honor Guard.Memorials can be made to Lord of Love Lutheran Church at 8306 East 171 Street, Belton, MO, where John was a charter member. A memorial service will be held at a later date.John will be greatly missed by his loving daughter, family and friends.On line condolences may be directed to the family at

John” Bill ” was born Jan. 3, 1925 in Mode, IL the son of Harry Wilbert and Gertie Mae Bohske Elben.

He married Jeanette Schwenker on Nov. 17, 1946 and she passed away April 12, 2005.

Bill received his high school diploma from Stewardson-Strasburg High School while serving in the United States Air Force, and served his country from 1943 to 1945 during WWII.He flew many long range missions over enemy territory, and received the Air Medal with five oak clusters.In 1953, he was recalled to active duty status during the Korean War and was assigned to seven different Air Force Bases in the United States and Newfoundland.

Bill’s entire life had a unique connection to the number “13”.He enlisted in the United States Air Force on the 13th; flew his first and last air missions on the 13th and retired on Dec. 13, 1970.

Bill and Jeanette then moved to Columbus, GA where she employed at the Army Air Force Exchange Service.He and Jeanette made their home in Columbus for 33 years until 2003 when they retired to Belton, MO

Betweenhis tours of duty in the military( 1946 to 1953) they made their home in Shelbyville where he was employed by the Oliver Corporation and was a member ofSt. Paul’s Lutheran Church and Roy Vanderpool American Legion Post #81.

Bill is survivedby his loving daughter, Sharon Carneal of Belton, MO ; grandson: Sean Bybee of Lee`s Summit, MO; sisters-in-law: Marie Stewardson of Rosemount, MN, Eileen Jenkins and husband Bob of Grand Haven, MI and Wanda King and husband Larry of Forsyth, IL; one niece; several nephews and several step nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his wife Jeanette, son Lyle, son-in-law Tom Carneal and brothers-in-law Roy Schwenker Jr. and Don Stewardson; sister-in-law and husband, Shirley and Herb Dolowy; niece Kathy Moore; step-niece Terry Dolowy.