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James ‘Red’ Gavers, 84

James “Red” Gavers, 84, of Woodstock, passed away Monday, July 17, 2023, in the comfort of his own home. He courageously battled his fight against cancer.

He was born April 14, 1939, in Cary to Otto and Ann (DeVogelaere) Gavers.

Unyielding his patriotism, Red joined the Army, 82nd Airborne Division in 1960, and was stationed in Fort Bragg, N.C., as a sergeant. and paratrooper.

He joined his brother and business partner, Bob Gavers, in 1962, operating Gavers Automotive in Woodstock after leaving the service. For 57 years, they together were a staple in the community as mechanics and towing operators before retiring in 2019. There was never a job too challenging. He attributed his success to a positive attitude and never quitting.

Red’s hobbies included his love of cars, from Austin-Healy to Jaguars to Cadillacs. He loved motorcycles and snowmobiles and was always on the move. He had a love of flying, earning his pilot’s license in 1985, and had two planes at Galt Airport for 40 years. He was an avid gambler with a love of craps, frequenting Grand Victoria and Hollywood Casino, where he would often entertain his family and friends with wonderful dinners, concerts, and boxing matches. He loved to work in his yard and hang with his many labs throughout the years. Most mornings, Red could be found at the station with a toasted PB&J, hosting “coffee club” with the boys.

Red is survived by his girlfriend of 30 years, Margaret Reneé Simcoe, and four-legged friend, Reese; sons, Chris (Angela) Gavers and Tim Larsen; his stepdaughter, Jessica (Marty James) Martell; grandchildren, Brittany (Ryan), Kaylie, Dillon, Jenna, Jayden, and Jakob; great-grandchildren, Lian, Ashton, and Elliot; siblings, Bob (Lucille) Gavers, Tom (Judy) Gavers, David Gavers, Genevieve (Joe) O’Herron, and Terry (Ellen) Gavers; and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents and brothers, William, Johnny, Donny, and Gene Gavers.

Memorial gathering will be held Monday, July 24, 2023, from 10 a.m. until the service at 1 p.m. at Schneider, Leucht, Merwin & Cooney Funeral Home, 1211 N. Seminary Ave., Woodstock IL 60098. Interment will be private.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Gavers Community Cancer Foundation P.O. Box 1724, Woodstock, IL 60098

For information, contact the Schneider, Leucht, Merwin & Cooney Funeral Home at 815-

338-1710 or visit

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