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1939 Val 2022

Val A. Rand

February 21, 1939 — April 7, 2022

Valerian Anthony Rand, known to all as Val, passed away on Thursday, April 7, 2022 at Lightways Hospice Inpatient Unit.  He was born February 21, 1939 in Chicago to Val and Frances (Huettel) Rand who preceded him in death.  He is survived by his wife Roberta (Bobbie - nee Meyer) of 56 years and four children, Tanya Rand of Joliet, Catherine (Trina) Rand (Rodger Smith) of Washington, DC, Stephen (Molly Dohm) of Elmhurst and Tara Rand (Todd Greenwald) of Crystal Lake, 12 grandchildren, Kevin and Sara Rand, Bylan, Ayka and Saxon Randsmith, William, Katie and Charlie Rand, Gavin, Reve, Neo and Kai Greenwald.

He is also survived by brothers, Joseph (Karen) of Lake Forest, Illinois and Reginald (Linda) of Lodi, Wisconsin and sister Cynthia Swedell of Romeoville.  Brother-in-law Anthony Meyer (Jan – deceased) of Indianapolis and sister-in-law Jennifer Chereck of Lexington, SC.  Many nieces and nephews also survive him.

In 1967 Val graduated from Bradley University where he returned after a stint in the Army during which he was stationed in Korea.   It was in the Army he met a fellow veteran who introduced Val to his sister, Bobbie.  They were married August 28, 1965.

After college he moved to Joliet in 1967, working in sales and marketing for Hallmark Cards.  In 1983 along with his wife, he opened Rand’s Hallmark Cards and Gifts in Hillcrest Shopping Center which remained his flagship store.  There were many more stores before his retirement.

Val valued giving back to his church and to the community.  At St. Paul the Apostle Church, he was past president of the Parish Council as well as the School Board, a choir member, lector and Eucharistic Minister.  Other involvements include the Mayslake Marmion Ministries (retreat movement), Joliet Jet’s Swim Team, Joliet Region Chamber of Commerce, Will County Chamber of Commerce, Will Grundy Center for Independent Living, Joliet Noon Lion’s Club, Project Acclaim, The Upper Room Crisis Line, the Joliet Area Historical Museum, Rialto Square Theatre Performing Arts for Youth Committee, Lewis University Council of Regents, University of St. Francis President’s Council, Bradley University Business School Advisory Board, and Silver Cross Hospital Foundation Board.

He was happiest when he was “holding court” surrounded by family and friends. Val and Bobbie traveled extensively around the world. They visited almost every state in the USA, many with their children.  Val was often seen at this grandchildren’s sporting, school or art events. Whatever was important to his grandchildren was important to Val.  

Until arthritis prevented it, Val loved playing the violin with a quartet of friends and also loved planting and watering flowers in his gardens.

During his active lifetime, he received many awards including Lion’s Melvin Jones Fellow, Center for Independent Living Larry Sak Excellence in Accessibility, the DeLaSalle Award from Lewis University for outstanding community, civic and charitable service, induction into Joliet’s Hall of Pride (Project Acclaim), the Joliet Chamber of Commerce Rabbi Hershman Community Service Award, the Joliet Chamber and University of St Francis Marx Gibson Community Leadership Award, and a very special one: the Sangmeister Medal of Excellence from Silver Cross Hospital as well as many awards from Hallmark Cards Inc both while a sales rep and as a store owner.

His capsule philosophy of life was to live a life of stewardship by using his time, talent and treasures to help make this world a slightly better place.

Funeral services will be held from Blackburn-Giegerich-Sontag Funeral Home on Tuesday, April 12 at 10:30 a.m. to St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church for a Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m.   Interment will follow at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery.  Visitation will be held on Monday, April 11 at the funeral home from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Donations can be made to  Lightways Hospice and Serious Illness Care or any of the organizations  in which Val was involved.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Val A. Rand , please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Monday, April 11, 2022

3:00 - 8:00 pm (Central time)

Blackburn-Giegerich-Sonntag Funeral Home

1500 Black Road, Joliet, IL 60435

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Mass of Christian Burial

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

11:00 - 11:45 am (Central time)

St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church

18 Woodlawn Ave, Joliet, IL 60435

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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