In Memory

Kenneth Gary Kombrink

Kenneth Gary Kombrink

Obituary for Kenneth "Gary" Kombrink

Kenneth “Gary” Kombrink, 72, passed away Sunday, March 25 , 2018 , at his home in Bloomington after being treated for lymphoma at the University of Chicago for the past 6 months. He was born August 29, 1945 in Harrisburg, Pa. to Gilbert and Ruthe Kombrink. He married Sandra K. Arnold on March 28th, 1987... which, he often declared, was the luckiest day of his life.

A service to celebrate Gary’s life will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday, March 29, 2018 at Carmody-Flynn Funeral Home, Bloomington, where the family will receive friends from 4-6 p.m. A graveside service will be at 10 a.m. Friday, March 30, 2018 at Hudson Township Cemetery, Hudson where military rites will be accorded by the Bloomington-Normal American Legion Honor Guard.

Memorial contributions may be made to Wedrose Acres Animal Sanctuary, 16747 Kappa Road, Gridley, IL 61744.

He attended high school in Belleville and college at the University of Missouri where he was quarterback of the football team in 1966-67 and co-captain his senior year. After graduation in 1968, he served in the U.S. Army as a second lieutenant from 1968-1970. After completing his service, he attended law school at the University of Missouri, graduating in 1973, after which he began a legal career which included partnership in the Dunn law firm in Bloomington, IL. and service as a staff attorney for the University of Illinois specializing in labor and employment law. Gary retired from the U of I in 2005, but then later served as Director of Labor Relations at Illinois State University for several years while also maintaining a private law office in Bloomington. When he retired for a second time, he devoted all his time to his beloved wife and the cats they rescued and gave homes to.

He leaves behind his beloved wife Sandi; his mother Ruthe; two sisters, Gayle (Gary) Libberton and Lisa (Jesse Camacho) Kombrink; a son, Ryan Kombrink; a daughter, Kyle (John) Roche; 5 grandchildren, Nora, Maddie, Lucy, Abby and Matthias; 2 nephews, Rand and Gabe; and one niece, Shelle.

No obituary for Gary would be complete without listing the names of his cherished kitties... some that remain on Earth and many already in Heaven... but ALL deserving to be remembered on this day. Stella, Max, Jakie, Lexy, Middie, Eddie, CC, Diablo, Little Orphan Annie, Big Tom, Yogi, Sparky, Batman Buddy, Josie, Beau-Beau, Sadie Mae, Sammie Joe, Bibbs, Spuds, Spookers, 'Lil Mitts, Little Jack, Cowboy Joe Pussums, Mitten, Chester, Tommy and of course, the one and only ... Frankie Joe. Our hope is that ALL the cats who have ever loved him will be waiting at the Rainbow Bridge to welcome him home.

Gary's greatest joy was found in his own back yard. He was a true believer in knowing that the secret to having it all is knowing that you already do.

Love found... Love lost. He will be missed forever and a day... and then some more.

go to bottom 
  Post Comment

03/28/18 02:05 PM #1    

James Zaring

Gary was a natural leader and respected by all. He was the best of the best and i’m proud to call him teammate. His positive attitude was infectious and his skills were second to none. Gary helped me achieve my personal football goals. Gary always gave credit were credit was due. It was never about Gary he always referred to the team. Blocking for Gary was a honor and I will always remember him. Rest In Peace you’ earned it. My deepest sympathy to his family and friends. 

03/28/18 02:58 PM #2    

Charlie Manker

Gary was just a stellar person, athlete and professional. I reconnected with him at a renunion a number of years ago and through Bob Schmitt, his good buddy. I knew he had been ill for quite some time and we talked about it briefly once or twice. I was so terribly saddened to hear from Bob this past Monday that Gary had passed away. My prayers and throughts are with Sandi and the family.

I first met Gary playing football at BTHS. It was quite a year when we were seniors and the team went undefeated. Like Jim Zaring's post, I was privileged to block for Gary. But I was way out of his league. Gary was all state quarterback and went to the University of Missouri where he started that position in 1966 and 1967 for the legendary coach Dan Devine. Bob Frala, our coach at BTHS, was an assistant coach for Devine. Gary was red shirted a year which allowed him to play in the 1967 season. I went to Mizzou also and it was cool to see him play for the Tigers.

On top of that, Gary served his country in the Army and had a distinguished legal career after law school at Mizzou. He was just tremendously accomplished and the nicest guy you would ever want to meet.

Charlie Manker


03/29/18 10:23 AM #3    

Roger Bechtold

My deepest symphathy to Gary's dear fanily and friends.He was a special person.athlete, and dear friend. I shared many memorable times with Gary and his friends and high school buddies. We kept in touch thru out his college days as well as his career. A memorable time was when he came up to Chicago to visit Jo Ann and I. He had a court appearance in Chiicago and forgot his dress pants! He borrowed a pair of mine.!  He will be sadly missed by all  but his memory will always be with us.

03/30/18 05:30 PM #4    

Harry Sterling


Gary was a really good guy and what a wonderful career and life. I remember watching him in a poker game once discarding the queen of diamonds to draw the queen of spades to complete a royal flush. It looks like that luck followed him in his life. Well done Gary. Rest In Peace.    Harry Sterling




go to top 
  Post Comment