William F. Fishburn
YUMA, AZ – William F. "Bill" Fishburn, 83, formerly of Springfield, Ill., passed away Saturday, Jan. 4, 2014, at Yuma Regional Medical Center.
He was born April 7, 1930, in Detroit Mich., the son of Fred L. and Edna L. Fishburn. Soon after his birth, the family returned to Springfield, Ill. He attended Springfield Public Schools and graduated from Lanphier High School, Class of 1948.
He married the former Mary Margaret Maloney on Feb. 10, 1951, and she survives. Bill graduated from Western Illinois University in 1956 with a Master's Degree in Education Administration. He taught school in Astoria, Ill., from 1954-1957. In 1957 he moved his young family to Springfield, Ill., where he began a 30-year career with Springfield Public School District 186. During his career he taught students at Enos Elementary School, served as Principal at Douglas Elementary School and Hazel Dell Elementary School and served as Assistant Principal at Lanphier High School.
As a teenager, Bill earned the badge of Eagle Scout, the highest rank attainable in the Boy Scouts of America.
He was a former member of the Springfield Education Association and the Principal's Association in Springfield. At the time of his death he was a member of the Illinois Retired Teachers Association. And finally, he was a Charter Member of the Monday Night Football Juggers.
Bill had a passion for travel and sports. Some of his notable travels include the fact that he visited all 50 of the United States. On two occasions he hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon and back. He was arguably the number one fan of his beloved Fighting Irish football team of the University of Notre Dame. He and Mary attended countless Irish home football games and also followed the team to games in Hawaii and abroad to Ireland. Although he traveled the world, his favorite destination was Silver Beach at St. Joseph, Mich. For it was there that his children and grandchildren would converge every summer and he and Mary would preside over the festivities of the Annual Fishburn Family Reunion.
Bill was fun-loving and somehow could find a way to have two week's worth of fun during a weekend getaway. He had a sense of humor second to none, an infectious laugh and a twinkle in his eye.
Surviving family members who will miss him dearly include his wife, Mary; children: Michael (Cathy) of Chelsea, Mich., Janice Van De Velde of Springfield, Ill., Timothy (Karen Morrow) of Springfield, Ill., and W. Craig (Lynn) of Indianapolis, Ind.; grandchildren: Philip (Estie) and David Fishburn, Trevor Van De Velde, Morgan (Damien) Kaplan, Taylor Fishburn, Steven (Victoria) and Whitney Fishburn; great-grandchild: Ryan Fishburn; and several cousins.
Burial and services will be in Springfield, Ill., at a later date.
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