John Kocik, age 91, WWII
Veteran, of Aurora, formerly of Sugar Grove and Berwyn, passed away peacefully on Sunday, March 23, 2014. Beloved husband of Joan "Pat" Patricia, nee Victor, he is survived by his sister, Elizabeth "Betty" Drobny, his nieces Linda, Gail, Carol, and Kim, his nephew Mark, and their families. John went to Morton H.S., Morton Jr. College, Texas A&M, and graduated with a B.S.E.E. from the University of Illinois
. As a youth he competed in gymnastics while at Sokol Tabor in Berwyn. Later in life he was active in the American Legion, A.I.E.E., Junior Achievement, Telephone Pioneers, Berwyn Jaycees, Toastmaster Club, National Electronics Conference, and I.B.T. Chorus, which is where he met his devoted wife. While in the US Army
Signal Corps, he qualified for the Army Specialized Training Program, (A.S.T.P), and the Tank Destroyer Battalion. He was a WWII Army Veteran in Camp Hood Intelligence. In 1947, as a registered Professional Engineer in Illinois, he started working at Illinois Bell. He moved to Whippany, NJ with Bell Tel Labs to work on the NIKE Project missile system. In 1958, he accepted the Department Chief Position in the Defense Projects Division with Western Electric, where he coordinated the SAGE System Performance Tests publication for the U.S. Air Force
. He then transferred to Project Mercury as the Site Manager of a military base in Woomera, Australia, where he worked with NASA, in the construction of the Mercury tracking station. Upon completion, he moved to AT&T Headquarters in New York City within the Mobile Radio Group, where he dealt with the FCC in Washington, D.C.. Finally returning to Illinois Bell, John worked in the technical and systems planning areas of various divisions. After almost 35 years in the Bell System, he took early retirement along with his wife. For more than 20 years they were able to continue their passion of traveling extensively to many local, foreign, and exotic locations. John will be remembered as a true gentleman and missed by all who knew him. Private interment arranged by Cremation Society of Illinois.