Ron Birr


OREGON – On April 23, 2021, Ron Birr, 78, of Oregon, passed away peacefully, after suffering an extended illness (Parkinsonism/Lewy Body Dementia.) Ronald Raymond Birr was born in Elmhurst, on Feb. 3, 1943 to Raymond and Dorothea (nee Reschke) Birr of the Wheaton-Lombard, Ill., area. Ron was a 1961 graduate of Wheaton High School.

Ron’s greatest achievement was his family. He married Janice C. Reese in Elmhurst on April 4, 1964. Ron and Jan just celebrated their 57th Anniversary. He was an amazing family man, loving husband and father to Jeffrey R. Birr, Laura Brown, and father-in-law to Jim Brown all of Dixon.

Preceded in death by his parents, sister Margaret Wilde, nephew, David Wilde and many aunts, uncles and cousins.

Ron enjoyed his solitude and had an enthusiasm for outdoor adventure, which was contagious.  He was an avid bicyclist and happiest riding on the open roads and bike trails or paddling on peaceful waters, in a canoe. In fact, according to his recently discovered, meticulously documented bicycle mileage, in 32 years (from 1985-2017) he rode over 48,246 miles. That is twice around the earth!! If he could share these experiences with friends and family, all the better. He and Jan had many bicycle/camping adventures around the Midwest. He especially was drawn to the rugged north woods of Northern Ontario and Northern Minnesota, where he requested his ashes be released, some day. 

Ron retired in 2015, from Woods Equipment Co., Oregon, as Sr. Product Safety Manager. He was the President/Owner of Birr Risk Analysis, Inc, Galva, and worked in the Engineering Administration as Loss Control Coordinator at Kewanee Farm Equipment Co., Kewanee.

Special thank you for Ron’s care, to Dr. Gregory Reckamp & Staff, KSB Hospital, Oregon Fire Chief Michael Knoup, Mt. Morris Ambulance Service, Polo Rehab & Health Care, Serenity Hospice & Home. In lieu of flowers, Memorials may be made to Serenity Hospice & Home, 1658 S. IL Rt 2, Oregon, IL 61061 or Boys Town, P.O. Box 8000, Boys Town, NE 68010 (Ron was a long-time supporter of Boys Town.)

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Celebration of Life will be scheduled at a later date, due to COVID-19.