Matthew William Bachmann, 65, succumbed to the ravages of Primary Progressive Aphasia (PPA), combined with Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP) on March 14, 2013. He led a life of silence over the past two years, with PPA quickly taking his speech and leaving his communicative interactions to "thumbs up and down." Yet his mind was as sharp as ever, and he continued to laugh at jokes and stories.
He had three loves in life: The first was his family, particularly his only son, Matthew William. He believed in teaching his son in all aspects of life, so he volunteered as a religious education teacher at St. Giles and as a T-ball coach. He coached all the way through middle school and was there through heat and cold, rarely missing practices or games. He also coached in the YMCA basketball league, trying to inspire the boys with strategies and skill. He enjoyed the camaraderie of the other parent coaches.
Mr. Bachmann doted over his three sisters, Molly, Eileen and Katy, and mother (Mary Lou), as well as Jane, his wife of 27 years. It was a joy for him to be surrounded by such wonderful women. Tennis was his second love. He played the game for four decades, honing his skills in singles and doubles matches, building many friendships on and off the courts. He served on the Oak Park Tennis Association board for several years and watched its membership and structure grow to a strong volunteer tennis group.
His third joy was his love of animals. He constantly had the family dog at his side for 13 years, walking and driving "Puppy" around in his pickup truck, and even taking him to the barbershop and the dog park, where he knew every pet's name.
Matt Bachmann is survived by his wife, Jane; his son, Matthew; his mother, Mary Elizabeth Bachmann; his sisters, Molly (Al) Wakeman, Eileen (Craig) Olsen, and Kathleen (Scott) Wissemann; and his many nieces and nephews.
A celebration of Matt's life will be held on March 23 at St. Giles Church in Oak Park, with a commemorative gathering beforehand at 9:30 a.m. and a Mass at 10:30 a.m. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Oak Park Animal Care League, www.animalcareleague.org or to the Oak Park Tennis Association, www.optennis.com.