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William Lay

William Joseph “Bill” Lay, 70, of Freeburg, IL, born March 4, 1942, in East St. Louis, IL, died Sunday, March 25, 2012, at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, Belleville, IL.

Mr. Lay was a registered pharmacist who owned and operated Pharmacare Drugs on West Main Street in Belleville for 36 years.  He was a graduate of Assumption High School, East St. Louis, IL, and the St. Louis College of Pharmacy.  

Bill was preceded in death by his parents, Arthur and Marianne, nee Schwartz, Lay; his father-in-law, Dale Gestes; and a brother-in-law, Roger Gestes.

Surviving are his wife of 46 years, Patricia “Pat”, nee Gestes, Lay;
his daughter, Kimberly Lay of Freeburg, IL;
two granddaughters, Brittany and Lauren;
two brothers, Richard (Barbara) Lay of Millstadt, IL,
 and James (Diane) Lay of Swansea, IL;
two sisters, Barbara (Dave) Imber of Millstadt, IL,
 and Patty Russell of Belleville, IL;
his mother-in-law, Adela Gestes of Belleville, IL;
sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, Miss Margie Gestes, Kathy Rauk, Debbie Storey,
 Dale (Laurie) Gestes, Deynise Gestes, and Mrs. Margie Gestes, all of Belleville, IL,
 Darren (Mary) Gestes of Freeburg, IL,
 Valerie Gestes of Camdenton, MO,
 and Terry (Darah) Gestes of Glen Carbon, IL;
numerous nieces and nephews; relatives; and friends.

The family would like to thank the A and C intensive care units at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital and all of his physicians, especially Dr. Brett Winkeler and Dr. Barbara Sudholt, for their special care and concern. 

In lieu of flowers, turn toward someone, give them a hug, and say a kind word.  Condolences may be expressed to the family online at
Visitation:  A private family memorial visitation will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday, March 31, 2012, at George Renner & Sons Funeral Home, Belleville, IL.

Funeral:  Private memorial services will be held at 6 p.m. Saturday, March 31, 2012, at the funeral home.

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Condolences Left For William Lay

    Sorry to hear about your loss. I have fond memories of visiting him with Tim and also with my Dad when he would go to the pharmacy. He's a special man

    Joe and Katie Cygan, Edmond, OK, 73013


    So sorry to hear of Bill's passing, my thoughts and prayers are with you

    Gary Hopfinger, Lake Placid, Florida, 33852

    Please accept our deepest sympathy in the loss of Bill. I will always remember the fun times we enjoyed together and especially the positive influence Bill had on my career. We will always have fond memories and the greatest respect for Bill. We wish you and the entire Lay family the very best in this difficult time, and we pray that God will comfort you and bless you as you deal with your loss.

    Ron and Karen

    Ron & Karen Grimming, Lake Placid, Florida, 33852

    Thinking of you and your family.

    Liz RN CCU, Smithton, Il, 62285

    Bill was a very special person. He will truly be missed. In sympathy and prayer for all of Bill's family and friends. Life is but a stopping place, a pause in what's to be. A resting place along the road to sweet eternity. May peace shine down upon all of you and bring you comfort.

    Rice, Sullivan & Co., Ltd, Swansea, , IL, 62226

    Pat, So sorry to hear of Bill's passing. I thought of our high school days and the fun times we had... Your family is in our prayers...

    Pat Ernst (Hudzik), Maryland Heights, Mo, 63146

    Pat please accept our deepest sympathy on Bill's death. He will be missed in so many ways.

    Howard & Mary Jane Hoenig, Belleville, Il., 62223

    Bets and I would like to extend that our thoghts and prayers are with the entire Lay family at the loss of Bill. I'll miss his coments, but he is in a better place now. God Bless, Bob & Bets

    Bob & Bets Hamlin, Shiloh, Il, 62269

    Dear Pat and Family, I am so sorry to hear about your loss. I saw it in the paper and it brought back memories of our days in school. PLease know that you are in our prayers. Love Wanda

    wanda maloney stache, ofallon, illinois, 62269

    Pat, I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I also lost mine a month ago.

    Barbara Bour, Belleville,, Illinois, 62226



    bob and june gagen, belleville, illinois, 62223

    So sorry for your loss. My prayers are with you and your family.

    Rose Ax Pappas, Belleville, IL, 62223


    We're very sorry to hear about your loss. Please accept our deepest sympathies. Our prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time.

    God bless all of you,

    John and Joann Czaicki

    John Czaicki, Belleville, IL, 62223

    tom and i send our condolences

    shirley mccarty tom hubbard, swansea, il, 62226

    Pat and Kim and Family, So sorry to hear about the passing of Bill. Please accept our love and good wished to you and your Family. We remember the fun times we all had together at the games and after when the girls were at Blessed Sacrament. He will be remembered! Bob & Karen Fries

    Karen L. Fries, Belleville, IL, 62223

    Our thoughts and prayers are with your you and your family.

    Wendell & Sandy Hudzik and Family, Collinsville, Illinois, 62234

    Dear Jim and Diane,
    We're sorry to learn that you have lost your brother "Billy." I went to grade school and high school with Bill, and even though we were not close friends, I liked him and respected him for his determination. We will remember Bill in our prayers. May God be with you in this time of sadness. Ron and Sharon Morfick

    Ron and Sharon Morfick, Belleville, Illinois, 62221

    I am very sorry to hear of the passing of Bill.I send my prayers for him and his family.
    Sincerely,Wayne Fussell

    Cletus Wayne Fussell, Caseyville, Illinois, 62232

    Dear Pat and Family,

    Please accept our thoughts and prayers with the loss of Bill. We were customers of Pharmacare for around the last twenty-three years. He will be sadly
    missed by us.

    Jack and Elaine Dinges, Smithton, IL, 62285

    My Deepest Sympathy and Prayers go out to the family.

    Lester J. Solt, Round Rock, Texas, 78665

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