A former Madison County Clerk and Illinois State Senator has died.  Evelyn Bowles passed away Friday at the Eden Village assisted living center in Edwardsville at the age of 94.

Bowles began working as Madison County's Deputy Clerk in 1951, and then served five consecutive terms as Madison County Clerk from 1974 until 1994, at which time she was appointed to the State Senate seat left open with the death of Sam Vadalabene.  She retired in 2003, at which time Bill Haine secured the seat.  Visitation will be from 2-7pm Wednesday at the Weber and Rodney Funeral Home in Edwardsville.  Funeral Mass will be held at 10:30am Thursday at St. Mary Catholic Church in Edwardsville.



Comments from officials in Madison County and Southwestern Illinois on the passing of Evelyn Bowles, longtime Madison County Clerk and Illinois State Senator:



“Throughout her career as a public servant, Evelyn Bowles put politics aside and did what was best for the people she served.  We mourn the passing of a great public servant, of a friend and of a mentor.  She will be missed.”


                                                                  Alan J. Dunstan


                                                                  Madison County Board



“Sad news.  A pioneer and a force.  She didn’t put herself above others.  Evelyn provided personal and competent service with humility and respect for those she served.  A great loss.”


                                                                             William Mudge


                                                                                                3rd Judicial Circuit



“Truly a renaissance woman!  She had it all, polotical dynamo, charm and grace, golfer and performer!  I will never forget her renditions of ‘Democrats, Democrats’ sung to the melody of Ja Da!  They broke the mold when they made her!”


                                                                             David Hylla

                                                                                                Chief Judge

                                                                                                3rd Judicial Circuit



“Evelyn was a great lady.  She exemplified a devotion to honest and competent piblic service.  God rest her soul.”


                                                                             William Haine

                                                                                                Illinois State Senator


“I remember when I first met with Evelyn to seek her advice when I was contemplating running for coroner in 2000.  She was so straightforward with her counsel, ‘don’t ever forget why you are in public service for as soon as you do, your supporters will forget why they voted for you.  Always remain being the person they voted for.  In politics it can be hard to stay humble and avoid becoming cynical, don’t fall into that ego trap and you will do well for yourself and your constituents.’”


                                                                             Steve Nonn


                                                                                                Madison County



“So very sad.  She was a great lady with class!”


                                                                             Jay Hoffman

                                                                                                Illinois State Senator



“She always took time to talk and, more importantly, to listen.”


                                                                             Dan Beiser


                                                                                                Illinois Legislature



“It’s a sad day in Madison County  with the news of the passing of Senator Evelyn Bowles.  Her words,  ‘When you fall down, and you will fall down, what matters moost is how you handle yourself in the process.’  and ‘The County Clerk serves all citizens.  We don’t care if you’re Republican or Democrat, we treat everyone the same.  Politics stops at the door,’ a position which remains the mantra in the County Clerk’s office.”


                                                                             Debbie Ming Mendoza

                                                                                                County Clerk

                                                                                                Madison County


“Very sad.  Evelyn was a true public servant and will be greatly missed.”


                                                                                    Tom Gibbons

                                                                                    State’s Attorney

                                                                                    Madison County


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