Obituary: Gale Cragen, 64, of Center

Posted: Jul. 16, 2019 1:42 pm

Gale Cragen, 64, of Center, passed away at 8:27 a.m. Monday, July 15, 2019, at his home.

Funeral services will be at 10 a.m. Tuesday, July 23, 2019, at the James O'Donnell Funeral Home in Hannibal. Rev. Phyllis Hart and Rev. Steve Gorner will officiate. Burial will be at Grand View Burial Park in Hannibal.

Friends and family are invited to Gale’s life celebration at a visitation that will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Monday at the funeral home.

Gale was born Dec. 18, 1954, in Hannibal, to Rex Elmo and Regenia "Ruth" Briggs Cragen.

He was married to Barbara Rucker Cowden on Jan. 26, 1991, in Hannibal. She survives.

Other survivors include his mother, Ruth Cragen of Center; three children, Tony Cowden (Lisa) of Lawrenceburg, Ind., Chris Cowden (Angie) of New London, Brandee Janes (Charlie) of Hannibal; two brothers, Briggs Cragen (Janice) of Troy, and John Cragen (Vicki) of New London. He is also survived by eight grandchildren, Taylor Cowden, Maddie Janes, Reighley Janes, Abigail Cowden, Tucker Cowden, Thomas Janes, Trenton Cowden, Bryce Janes and a niece and a nephew.

Gale was preceded in death by his father.

Professionally, Gale was a farmer for over 50 years, primarily planting corn and beans. He really enjoyed teaching his grandson, Bryce, how to farm.

Gale enjoyed deer hunting and being in the outdoors. Gale loved spending time with his grandchildren, whether watching them play sports or playing board games with them. Not only was Gale a longtime farmer, but was an excellent handyman, especially repairing farm machinery. Gale enjoyed watching old Westerns, especially Bonanza, Gunsmoke and anything with Clint Eastwood or John Wayne. He also enjoyed the simple things in life such as riding through the country with his dog.

Gale was a board member for the Ralls County Electric Cooperative and a former member of the Lions Club.

Gale was a member of the Olivet Christian Church in Center.

Memorial contributions may be made to the donor's choice.

Pallbearers will be Bruce Coleman, Tim Kurz, Dustin Cragen, Sara Cragen, Wes Jameson, Charlie Janes, Ron Peterson and Adam Ogle.

Honorary pallbearers will be Mr. Cragen's grandchildren, Taylor Cowden, Maddie Janes, Reighley Janes, Abigail Cowden, Tucker Cowden, Thomas Janes, Trenton Cowden and Bryce Janes.

Online condolences may be shared and video tribute may be viewed at


In Case You Missed It

Area lenders brace for stimulus loan applications
Shane Spalding spent nearly all his work time last week prepping for the rollout of the small business program that is part of a $2.2 trillion stimulus program that took effect on Friday morning