Robert "Bob" Wojcik, 81, of River Forest, died peacefully in his sleep on Feb. 21, 2012. Although illness slowed him down the past eight months, he enjoyed a full and happy life among friends and family. Born on Dec. 11, 1930 in Chicago to Bertha and John Wojcik, he attended St. Ignatius High School and DePaul University. In 1955 he began his career with the Chicago Fire Department. A firefighter for 38 years, through dedication and hard work, he advanced up the ranks and reached the position of battalion chief.
Upon retirement from the department in 1993, he moved to Oak Park and became active in the St. Ignatius Alumni Association, St. Giles Parish and developed a love of travel, which took him around the world to China, Australia, and his grandparents' home in Poland. He celebrated the new millennium in Paris. He also gave generously of his time to the school children on the West Side of Chicago. Chief Bob would visit each October during Fire Safety Week to promote fire safety rules. The children loved wearing his helmet and trying on his boots and heavy coat. Many of them remembered him on Father's Day with notes of thanks. In 2007 he moved to River Forest.
Bob Wojcik is survived by his wife, Joan (Beahan Skelly); his children, William (Diane) Wojcik and Ann (James) Longino; his step-children Edward (Jeanette) Skelly and Jane (Ed) Fielder; his grandchildren, Emily and Erika Brokaw, William, Lisa and Sophia Wojcik, Madeline and Christopher Longino, Jacqueline (Garry) Zurawski, Edward and Andrew Fiedler and Nicholas Skelly; and his great-grandchildren, Elizabeth Brokaw and Josie Zuraski.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Patricia (O'Malley); his daughter, Ellen (Fred) Brokaw; his stepson, Matthew (Nadine) Skelly; his grandson, Edward Skelly; and his great-granddaughter, Zoie Zurawski.
Visitation was held at Conboy's Funeral Home in Westchester. A funeral Mass was held on Feb. 25 at St. Giles Church in Oak Park. Memorials to St. Ignatius High School are appreciated.