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July 11, 1937 ~ September 28, 2023 (age 86) 86 Years Old


Gary L. Wells, 86, of DeKalb, Illinois, passed away Thursday, September 28, 2023, at Oak Crest DeKalb Area Retirement Center.

He was born July 11, 1937, the second of eight children, son of Harlan R. and Ila Faye (Ashdown) Wells. He grew up on a farm near Port Byron, Illinois and was Valedictorian of Port Byron High School Class of 1955. He graduated with high honors from University of Illinois with degrees in agriculture and agricultural engineering.   Gary met Anita Anderson playing softball at University of Illinois and they married on December 18, 1960, in Monee, Illinois.

Gary was truly a gentleman and a scholar, noted for his intellectual vocabulary and eloquent writing.  He held many positions throughout his 40+ year career with International Harvester and acquired several patents for design and engineering. As Vice President of the Crop Harvesting Division, he traveled all over the world. Creation of the rotary combine was a great point of pride. Gary’s family was the most important part of his life. He thoroughly enjoyed numerous family vacations and several cruises with Anita. He was known to proudly say, with a big smile, that being a grandpa was the best job he ever had. He was handy with tools, could fix anything, and loved spending weekend time working on the family farm. Gary was active in the community and served on church committees.

He is survived by his wife, Anita; his children, Lisa Wells Small, Elizabeth Wells, Andrew (Rebecca) Wells, Kristina (Andrew) DePalma; his grandchildren, Shelby (Louis) Zmich, Elizabeth Small, James Small, Jack Wells, Georgia Wells, and Justin Lofton; his siblings, Lanny Wells, Carla (Leon) Frick, Kendal (Carol) Wells, Barbara (the late Randy) Kline, and Bradley (Linda) Wells; his sister-in-law, Cindy Wells; and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his grandson Ian Wells; and two brothers, Harlow and Gregory Wells.

The Memorial Service will be held at 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, October 10, 2023, at The First United Methodist Church, 2501 N Annie Glidden Rd, DeKalb, with Rev. Jonathan Crail officiating. Interment of cremated remains will be at a later date at Zuma Township Cemetery. 

Visitation will be from 9:30 a.m. until the time of services at 11:00 a.m. at the church.

Memorials can be made to Ian’s Place For Bereaved Parentsor to the Parkinson’s Foundation, in memory of Gary Wells, in care of Anderson Funeral Home, P.O. Box 605, 2011 South Fourth Street, DeKalb, IL 60115.

For information, visit or call 815-756-1022.






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October 10, 2023

9:30 AM to 11:00 AM
First United Methodist Church
2501 N Annie Glidden Road
DeKalb, IL 60115

Memorial Service
October 10, 2023

11:00 AM
First United Methodist Church
2501 N Annie Glidden Road
DeKalb, IL 60115


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