Here’s what I wrote for Dad’s obituary. I hope it gets across a little bit about him as a man.
URBANA – Joseph E. Voelkl, 83, of Urbana, formerly of Lisle, Illinois died Friday (May 9, 2008) at Heartland Healthcare in Champaign.
A funeral mass will be held at 10:00 a.m. Thursday at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Urbana. The Rev. Joseph T. Hogan will officiate. Burial will be in Maplewood Cemetery in Rantoul.
Mr. Voelkl was born December 7, 1924, a son of Joseph and Anna Voelkl in Rochester, New York. He married Pauline Nelson in 1952. She survives. Also surviving are three daughters, Deborah Russo of Jamaica Plain, MA, Judith Voelkl of Clemson, SC, Cynthia Voelkl of Champaign, son-in-law Ernest Blackwelder and two beloved grandsons, Leo and Owen Blackwelder.
He served in the South Pacific on a Navy LST during World War II. A proud veteran, he knew the cost of war and his heart broke for the men and women serving in the current war. A lifelong fighter of injustice, his greatest joy as an attorney was winning a case for the underdog. He loved American history, antiques, and the history of habeas corpus. His spirit will be greatly missed by those that knew him.