Obituaries

We will update the list of names of our deceased warriors on a monthly basis. We will not place a person on this list with hearsay, second hand, information. Send us a link to the obituary, noting the date and name of the newspaper from which it was taken. If you don't have the obit, then you must be related to, or a close friend who attended the wake, funeral or memorial service.

December 2017

Rocco Mosca '77
James Stenstrom '76
Jeffery Johnson '74
Kenneth Lindquist - Teacher
Brian Wakefield '61
Kurt Fritscher '69

Rocco Mosca - Class '77
Rocco Mosca, Jr., age 59, former longtime resident of Des Plaines, passed away on November 29, 2017. Beloved son of the late Nicolette and Rocco Mosca; loving brother of Estelle Barratt, Dan (Gaye) Mosca and the late Angel (Larry) Pritzen and Nicky (the late Terry) Spizziri; adored uncle to Cindy Barratt, Donald Barratt, Steve Pritzen and Mark Pritzen and great-uncle to countless others. Graduate of Maine West High School. Family and friends will be received at the Conboy-Westchester Funeral Home, 10501 W. Cermak Rd., Westchester (2 blks West of Mannheim Rd.) for a Memorial Visitation on Sunday, December 3, 2017 from 3:00 to 8:00 p.m. with a 6:00 p.m. Service. For info 708-F-U-N-E-R-A-L.

James Stenstrom - Class '76

James A. Stenstrom age 59 of Des Plaines passed away November 23, 2017. Beloved husband of Charlene (nee Romano) for 34 years. Loving father of Melisa (Christopher) Swanson and Katie Stenstrom. Proud grandfather of Aria Rose. Dearest son of the late Kenneth and Lois Stenstrom and son in law of Addie and the late Joseph Romano. Fond brother of John Stenstrom, Julie (Todd) Gustafson and the late Paul Stenstrom. James was an Eagle Scout and a longtime member of Union Local IATSE Local 2. Memorial gathering Friday, December 8 from 3:00 p.m. until time of Service at 6:00 p.m. at First United Methodist Church 668 Graceland Ave, Des Plaines, IL. In lieu of flowers donations to First United Methodist Church of Des Plaines. Cremation care provided by G.L. Hills Funeral Home, Des Plaines, IL. For information 847.699.9003 or glhillsfuneralhome.com.

Published in a Chicago Tribune Media Group Publication on Dec. 5, 2017

Jeffery Johnson - Class '74
Jeffrey R. Johnson, 62, of Des Plaines, was born on September 4, 1955 in Chicago to Richard and the late Betty Johnson and passed away November 24, 2017. Jeffrey was the beloved husband of Aurelia (nee Escobedo) Johnson; loving brother of Kathy (Don) Stocks, Robert (Judi) Johnson, Keith Johnson, Eric (Erin) Johnson, Karol (Steve) Salerno and the late Kevin (Amanda) Johnson, fond uncle to many nieces and nephews. Memorial service Saturday December 9 from 1pm until time of service 2pm at Oehler Funeral Home, 2099 Miner St. (Northwest Highway/Route 14 at Rand Road), Des Plaines, IL. Interment Private. Memorials may be made to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Funeral information, 847-824-5155 or oehlerfuneralhome.com.

Published in Chicago Suburban Daily Herald on Dec. 3, 2017

Kenneth Lindquist - Teacher
Kenneth Duane Lindquist, longtime resident of Des Plaines, and Murphysboro, Illinois, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, November 21, 2017. He was surrounded by his family. Kenneth is survived by his wife of 63 years Bonnie (Edgar), sons Robert (Elana), Duane (Teri), Karl (Rocelda) and Tor (Robin); grandchildren Nicole, Jason, Kelsey, Derek, Adam, Katie, and Erica,; and great granddaughter Rose Allegra; brothers Keith, Kennard; Albert Conrad, and sister Patricia Storz. Born on July 19th, 1930 in Quinter, Kansas on the Eve of the Great Depression and raised in Holdrege, Nebraska by Melvin and Elda (Hussey) Lindquist and Albert Conrad (stepfather), most of his childhood was spent in poverty in the dustbowl states of Kansas & Nebraska. While helping to support his family with various jobs during his middle and high school years, Kenneth was determined to improve himself by attending college. He graduated from Holdrege High School in 1948 and was accepted into the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps on full scholarship and attended University of Nebraska at Lincoln. In 1952 he graduated from UNL with a Bachelor of Arts in History and was commissioned an Ensign in the United States Navy. Shortly after his commissioning, he was assigned to a heavy cruiser and later deployed to the Korean War as a Lieutenant Junior Grade aboard an LST and saw action along the Korean Peninsula. During a tour at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, he met his wife to be, Bonnie Belle Edgar. They married in Honolulu on June 12, 1954. After completing his military commitment and receiving an honorable discharge from the U.S. Navy as a Lieutenant Junior Grade in 1956, Ken started a teaching career that lasted until 1992. Beginning at Falls City High School, Nebraska, two years later Ken and Bonnie with oldest son Robert moved to Des Plaines, Illinois where sons Duane, Karl and Tor soon followed and Ken continued his teaching career at Maine Township High School West for the next 28 years. Ken then retired from the public school system, and completed his teaching career with the Chicago Area Catholic Diocese schools in 1992. During his career, he taught over 2,600 students the subjects of American, World, and European History and U.S. Government. We know Ken’s love of history, and his passion for teaching and Nebraska football has been passed on to his sons and grandchildren. Ken also had a passion for politics. He served as a Democratic Party precinct captain in Des Plaines for almost three decades, and despite unsuccessful runs at Illinois State Representative he vigorously supported Bonnie during her run for State Representative and election as a Maine Township Trustee. In 1995 Ken moved to Murphysboro with Bonnie where he was deeply involved with AARP and Illinois State legislation affecting senior healthcare and other benefits until his own health issues began to slow him down. In 2016 he and his wife Bonnie moved back to the Chicago area to be closer to their two sons, Duane and Tor and their families. A turning point in Ken’s personal life came in 1978 when he realized (with help from Bonnie) he needed to stop drinking to save his marriage, family and his life. It proved a fateful decision extended his life, especially when he quit smoking cigarettes shortly after joining AA. He was always grateful to AA and its members for keeping him sober and in return he helped others through the 12 steps in Des Plaines, Murphysboro and Carbondale. Ken’s family wants to thank the Bridgeway Senior Living and Great Lakes Hospice Care staff for their care, support and love that allowed “Mr. Ken” to continue to live with dignity and comfort during the last few days and hours of his life with us. All those that knew and loved Kenneth are encouraged to make a donation, in lieu of flowers and cards, to the Alzheimer’s Association (address below) in memory of Kenneth Lindquist. To honor and remember Kenneth, and to continue to fight the disease that robbed him of his memories and ultimately sent him to his resting place with God. Kenneth’s remains will be interred at the Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Joliet, Illinois. Memorial services to be announced.

Brian Wakefield - Class '61
Brian Donald Gilbert Wakefield of Troy, Michigan, died peacefully as he drifted off just before midnight while surrounded by his family on December 8, 2017, at Troy Beaumont Hospital. He was 74 years old. Brian is survived by his wife, Sandy, his sister, Rosemary Skelly and his children, Paul Wakefield, (Laura), of Davisburg, MI and Jennifer Carpenter, (Shawn Grenesko) Midland, MI, two step sons, and his grandchildren. Brian was born on August 3, 1943, in Des Plaines, IL to Ellen and Gilbert Wakefield. His father and brother, Donald, both served their country in World War II, but their sacrifice left his mother Ellen to raise Brian and Rosemary as a single mother in the 40’s.  They were a remarkably strong family with an exceptional work ethic that he passed down to his children. Brian attended Bradley University in Peoria, IL, and graduated with a degree in Journalism. His first industry position was at Burton Advertising in Peoria where he started his career in advertising and writing.  One of his initial projects was working on radio commercials for the first McDonalds restaurant in Des Plaines, where they created their original audio character, the McDonald’s Bear.  Brian wrote for Chilton Magazine and was one of the pioneers to write about the future of the robotics industry back in the late 1960’s.   He moved his family to Troy, Michigan, in 1976 to work for Production Magazine where he continued his writing for the automotive industry.  He continued his career in advertising and ultimately started his own ad agency, The Wakefield Group, where he helped clients find their product’s voice to share with the public until his last days. Brian was an avid reader and believed you should read everything you can get your hands on.  He carried this love on to his children and grandchildren by stocking their book shelves from the time they could read.  Fittingly, he loved spending time at the Troy Public Library.  He loved to tinker in his yard in Troy, where he has lived for 41 years. Brian will be remembered as a hard worker with fantastic stories, a witty sense of humor, lived a full, exciting life, traveled the world and lived life with a confident swagger.  In Brian’s last day, he expressed to his family that he was ‘at peace with his life and was happy.” There will not be a funeral or memorial service. Brian will rest in the Wakefield family plot in Chicago, IL.

Kurt Fritscher - Class '69
Kurt W. Fritscher age 66 lifelong resident of Des Plaines, Ill passed away on December 12, 2017. Cherished son of Jewel M. and the late Thomas E. Dear brother of Karl. Cousin of Nancy Reisner and Michael Reisner. Proud uncle of Jeffrey (Mackenzie) Reisner. A memorial service for Mr. Fritscher will be held at a future date. Cremation care provided by G. L. Hills Funeral Home. For information, please call (847) 699-9003 or glhillsfuneralhome.com.

Published in Chicago Suburban Daily Herald on Dec. 14, 2017