John McDonald, 63, bowler, White Sox fan
John McDonald, age 63, of Oak Park died on July 23, 2006, after a brief stay at Oak Ridge Convalescent Home in Hillside. Born in Chicago on Aug. 13, 1942 to Joseph and Mary McDonald, he was raised in Oak Park on North Harvey Avenue. He attended St Giles School and Seguin School and Training Center in Berwyn.

In his youth he was a fixture in the neighborhood. He could be seen shooting baskets in Taylor Park, ice skating at Hans Andersen Playground, flying kites at Hatch School, and doing one or more morning newspaper delivery routes. Later, he worked for 12 years as a janitor for the Crane Company in Chicago.

For the last 23 years he has lived at Helping Hand Rehabilitation Center in Countryside where he also was employed in the workshop. During the 1980s, he frequently watched his nephews play Little League games at Sedgwick Park in LaGrange.

Although he was mentally handicapped from birth, John surpassed his limitations in many ways during his lifetime. As an above-average bowler, he bowled for years in several adult leagues in the area, including the Knights of Columbus League. He was a knowledgeable fisherman and went on frequent excursions with friends and family to various parts of the country and Canada. He was an avid and well-informed sports fan whose favorite teams were the White Sox and the Duke University basketball team.

He had a wonderful way with animals, especially dogs, and could always get them to warm up to him. Most importantly, throughout his life he had a great knack for making and keeping friends and gaining their affection and respect.

John McDonald is survived by his siblings, Joe (Madeleine Raymond), Anne Murphy, Larry and Mary Jane (Patrick) Maloney; his nieces and nephews, Maureen (Steve) Wittmer, Colleen (Luke) Sanna, Timothy (Laureen) Murphy, Daniel (Kristin) Murphy, Moira (Debra Farkas) McDonald, and Mary Grace, Michael and Tricia Maloney; and many great-nieces and great-nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents.

Visitation was held July 26 at Drechsler, Brown & Williams Funeral Home. A Funeral Mass was celebrated July 27 at St. Giles Church, followed by interment at Queen of Heaven Cemetery. Memorials to Helping Hand Rehabilitation Center, 9649 W. 55th St., Countryside 60525 are appreciated.

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