Uno R. Ilvonen

Sep 11, 2017
Uno Ilvonen

Owls Head — OWLS HEAD – Uno R. Ilvonen, 64, died Thursday, Sept. 7, 2017, at his home, surrounded by his family after a gallant battle against pancreatic cancer.

Born in Rockland Aug. 17, 1953, he was the son of Richard W. and Margaret Packard Ilvonen.

Uno grew up on his family’s farm in Owls Head, where he learned his tenacious work ethic at an early age by doing chores, cutting wood and plowing snow. Uno learned to drive his father’s Mack truck at the age of 4. He was known for his love of trucks ever since.

Uno attended Owls Head and Rockland schools, graduating from Rockland District High School in 1971. Marrying the love of his life, Darla L. Teel, in Rockland Sept. 17, 1982, Uno and Darla made their home in Owls Head, where they raised their three children. Their home was always a safe haven for many friends, neighbors and family.

Beginning with one truck and a backhoe, Uno started his construction business, which was known as U.R. Ilvonen Earthmoving. Uno’s years of hard work and dedication turned his business into one of the best-known construction companies in Knox County. Deciding it was time for a change, he sold his business to Jake Barbour Inc.

After three years of semi-retirement, Uno found himself unable to sit still and started a paving company, Performance Paving, with his sons. When he wasn’t on a job site, Uno could be found tinkering around the shop or behind his desk doing countless hours of paperwork. His determination and perseverance to succeed were traits he always tried to instill in his children. Uno was a true entrepreneur, whether as a real estate developer or business owner.

Living and driving in the fast lane was a signature part of Uno’s personality. An avid race enthusiast, Uno holds the fastest drag record at Winterport Raceway. He often participated in Bike Week at Daytona Beach. His favorite memories involved riding his Harley and spending time with his kids. The person he cherished most in his life was his wife, Darla. Uno loved having family and friends at their winter home in Florida. He faced each day of his life with a winning attitude. Uno’s motto was, “Life is what you make of it.” Having such a big heart, Uno put his family first and was always there lending a hand, making him a friend to many.

Uno was predeceased by his mother in 1995, his beloved wife, Darla, in 2011 and his sister, Shelby L. Pare, this past March.

He is survived by his father, Richard W. Ilvonen; his children, Uno J. "Jake" Ilvonen, Teel R. Ilvonen, Kalli L. Ilvonen, all of Owls Head; his grandson, Taavi Ilvonen, of Owls Head; his brother, Charles F. Knight, and his wife, Cathy, of Birmingham, Ala.; his sister, Tracey Richardson, and her husband, Kevin, of Camden; his loving companion, Ramona Campbell; his brother-in-law, Roger Pare, both of Owls Head; his niece and nephews, Casey Knight Bass, Chris Knight and Wyatt Berry; as well as many extended family members.

Friends and relatives are invited to visit from 5 to 7 p.m.Thursday, Sept. 14, at Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock St., Rockland, where a celebration of life will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, Sept. 15. Interment will follow at Ocean View Cemetery, South Thomaston.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Bob Gagnon Cancer Care Fund, c/o Pen Bay Healthcare Foundation, 22 White St., Rockland, ME 04841, or to the Owls Head Fire Department, 335 North Shore Drive, Owls Head, ME 04854.

To share a story or memory with Uno’s family, visit their online Book of Memories at

Comments (1)
Posted by: Kendall Merriam | Sep 17, 2017 13:30

So, so sorry to hear of Uno's death. His Performance Paving crew of his son, Jake, and company workmen, paved our long driveway not long before his passing. They did a terrific job.


Kendall & Phyllis Merriam

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