Herrin-Melvin “Mel” Lee Hill, 84, of Herrin, passed away at 12:15 a.m. on Friday, May 20, surrounded by his loving wife of 59 years, Nancy (Simmons) and family, in Herrin Hospital.
Melvin was born November 1, 1931 to Simon and Lucille (Reel) Hill in Marion.
He attended elementary and high school in Herrin graduating with the class of 1948.
Melvin enlisted in the United States Air Force in 1949 and proudly served his country while stationed in Germany until 1953. Following his honorable discharge, he enrolled in Southern Illinois University to study accounting where he earned his Bachelor's degree. On his graduation day, June 16, 1957, he married the love of his life, Nancy Sadine Simmons, after a four year courtship. Opportunities in his career took them to Orlando, Florida, where he successfully employed his skill in accounting to the benefit of businesses in the citrus industry. They made their home in Orlando for 40 years creating lasting friendships, hosting vacationing family and friends, and celebrating life. Following retirement, he relocated their home, returning to Herrin.
Mel was an avid golfer, chasing that little white ball with his many buddies through the years. He enjoyed hunting and fishing and firing up the grill to cook some delicious meals.
Mel loved traveling and he was able to revisit Germany with Nancy, take an Alaskan cruise, and make many memorable trips into the mountains of northeast Georgia (Go Bulldogs!) and North Carolina. In retirement, he took up RV’ing and his love for adventure led them on a cross continent road trip to Alaska with salmon fishing under the midnight sun.
Although not blessed with children of his own, Mel was a fun loving, compassionate, and generous “second” father to his nieces and nephews and his “adopted” kids throughout the years. He will be sorely missed by them all.
He is survived by his wife Nancy; sister Jean of Chester; sister-in-law Sharon (BJ) Simmons of Marion; and nieces, nephews, and cousins too numerous to list.
Special thanks to his caregivers at Addus Home Health, Shawnee Christian Nursing Center, Herrin Hospital and Hospice of Southern Illinois.
Per his wishes, no services will be held. He will be cremated and interred in Rose Hill Cemetery in Marion. Memorial tributes may be made to Hospice of Southern Illinois. Blue Funeral Home in Marion is assisting with arrangements.