AMBOY — Nov. 21, 2017 was a happy day for the Illinois Central Lodge No. 178 of Amboy. The Amboy Masonic Lodge had the privilege of honoring one of its senior members.
Henry Gerdes reached a milestone of 50 years in service to the Lodge and community. Fifty years ago, Elvis and Pricilla Presley were celebrating their wedding, there were riots over the US involvement in Viet Nam, in the meantime Gerdes was making a lifelong commitment to his community and his family to embark on a journey towards constant personal improvement and community involvement and to be the best man possible.
This commitment has also served as a role model for both of his sons, Jeff and Bill. They also have begun the journey of lifelong service through an active life in Masonry.
While working at Sundstrand 50 years ago, Henry met Harry “Bud” Silfies. Bud was a Mason then. He encouraged Henry to make the commitment towards self-improvement and become a Mason. He became Henry’s Masonic mentor. As a testament to their enduring friendship and mutual commitment towards self-betterment, and Bud’s overwhelming approval of that recommendation made 50 years ago, Bud made a surprise visit to the celebration to personally award Henry his cherished 50 year Masonic Pin.