Dave Perry, 63, legendary Fenwick coach

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David L. Perry, 63, of Oak Park, a longtime coach at Fenwick High School, died on Sept. 11, 2011. Born in Hastings, Mich. on Oct. 6, 1947, he earned a bachelor's degree in Health, Physical Education and Recreation in 1969 from Western Michigan University and graduated from George Williams College with a master's degree in Recreation Administration in 1971.

Coach Perry taught and coached swimming and water polo at Mt. Carmel High School from 1979 to 1987 and at Fenwick High School from 1987 to 2011. At Fenwick, he co-coached the swim team to three I.H.S.A. state championships, placed second once and third twice. He coached the first I.H.S.A. state water polo champions in 2002 and won eight of the last nine state championships. His water polo coaching record for 31 years is 793-143-2.

He received the Tony Lawless Water Polo Coach of the Year, Chicago Catholic League and Metro Aquatics Conference, 13 times. In addition, he received the Tony Lawless Swimming Coach of the Year, Chicago Catholic League and Metro Aquatic Conference, nine times.

He coached over 60 all-American swimmers, 75 all-American water polo players and 30 NISCA All-Academic Athletes.

Coach Perry was inducted into the Illinois Water Polo Hall of Fame in 2002, the I.S.A. Hall of Fame in 2004 and the Chicago Catholic League Hall of Fame in 2011.

Dave Perry was the husband of Marianne (nee Mensik) for 35 years; the father of Kyle (Courtney) and Elizabeth (fiancé Matthew Timmons) Perry; the brother of Lynila Jo Perry and brother-in-law of Janet (Robert) Dews and the late Judy (William) Dolehide; the uncle of William (Teresa) Dolehide, Christopher Hamilton, Andrew (Gayle) Hamilton, Dana (Jeff) Prasek, Karen Hamilton and Jason Dews; the great-uncle and great-great-uncle and cousin of many; the son of the late Lynn and Cay Perry and son-in-law of Antoinette and the late Richard Mensik.

Visitation will take place this Friday, Sept. 16, from 3 to 9 p.m. in the gymnasium of Fenwick High School 505 Washington Blvd., Oak Park.

Family and friends will gather at St. Vincent Ferrer Church, Lathrop and North Ave., River Forest on Saturday beginning at 9:15 a.m., with funeral Mass celebrated at 10 a.m., followed by interment at Queen of Heaven Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorials to the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Chicago, 815 Pasquinelli Dr., Westmont, IL 60559, are appreciated.

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