Wayne Leo CheramyFebruary 13, 1932 ~ June 5, 2017 (age 85)
Funeral Services & Mass of Christian Burial for Wayne Leo Cheramy, of Bettendorf, Iowa, will be held on Friday, June 9, 2017 at 10:30 am at St. John Vianney Catholic Church, 4097 18th Street, Bettendorf. Visitation will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Thursday at McGinnis- Chambers Funeral Home, 644 River Drive, Bettendorf. An additional visitation will be held one hour prior to the Mass on Friday at the church. Immediately following the mass there will be a Celebration of Life luncheon at the Hilton Garden Inn, 959 Middle Road, Bettendorf. Wayne will be interred in a private ceremony for family at the Rock Island National Cemetery at the Rock Island Arsenal in Rock Island, Illinois. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to the family which will be distributed to various charities in Wayne’s memory.
Mr. Cheramy passed away on Monday, June 5, 2017 at the Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House in Bettendorf.
Wayne was born to Leo and Joan P. (Enright) Cheramy on February 13, 1932 in Clinton, Iowa. He graduated from Clinton High School in 1951. While in high school, Wayne was an accomplished athlete, excelling in both wrestling and football. After high school, he went on to play football at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois on a full ride football scholarship. Wayne graduated from Bradley in 1955 with a degree in Industrial Arts. After graduation, he entered the U.S. Army where he was on the Army Football and Wrestling Teams. Wayne served in the U.S. Army from 1955 to 1957.
Wayne married his best friend and love of his life Rita Laurent on June 20, 1959 at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Clinton. They were blessed with four wonderful children; Jeffrey (Anne) Cheramy of LeClaire, Iowa, Lisa Zerbonia of LeClaire, Maureen (Chris) Snyder of Ames, Iowa, and Michael Cheramy of Bettendorf.
Wayne earned a Master’s Degree in Education Administration from Truman State University, and a Specialist Degree from Western Illinois University. In 1958 Wayne began what became a long and successful career in education. His first position was teaching Physical Education and serving as the Athletic Director in Clear Lake, Iowa. After that, he moved to Bettendorf and taught at Bettendorf High School. While at Bettendorf, Wayne taught Industrial Arts and from 1958 until 1966 he served as an assistant coach for the Bettendorf High School Football Team. In addition to teaching and coaching football, he was the head wrestling coach from 1959 to 1964. In 2004, wrestlers from Bettendorf High School held a reunion where they honored Wayne at a special celebration, recognizing him for the positive impact he had on their lives.
After his time at Bettendorf High School, Wayne became an associate principal at Bettendorf Middle School. After serving as the Associate Principal, in 1984 he was named the Principal of the school. Wayne was the Principal at Bettendorf Middle School for six years before retiring from education in June, 1990. Bettendorf Middle School created the Wayne Cheramy Citizenship Award. This award is given annually, and recognizes an exceptional student who exhibits the qualities of responsibility, caring, respect, and community. These are the same qualities that Wayne modeled as a teacher, coach, and administrator.
To the end, Wayne was a generous and loyal soul who was always full of joy and laughter. First and foremost, he loved his family. But he also loved football, and his favorite teams were the Iowa Hawkeyes and the Chicago Bears. Wayne enjoyed his retirement years traveling, listening to music and dancing with his lovely wife Rita, and spending time with his children and seven grandchildren.
Wayne is survived by Rita, his wife of 57 years, his children, Jeffrey, Lisa, Maureen, and Michael. He is also survived by his brother, Gene Cheramy of Havasu, Arizona, and 7 grandchildren; Nicholas Zerbonia of Southlake, Texas, (Tyler) T.J. Zerbonia of Ames, Olivia Snyder of Chicago, Illinois, Matthew Cheramy of LeClaire, Sarah Cheramy of LeClaire, and Gracyn and Anna Snyder, both of Ames.
Wayne was preceded in death by his parents, Leo and Joan.
The family would like to express their heartfelt thanks and gratitude to Dr. Andrew Edwards, M.D. for the excellent care he provided and always being there for Wayne.