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Thomas C. O'Connor

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Thomas C. O'Connor Obituary
O'Connor, Thomas C. Age 70. Suddenly Sunday, December 9, 2012 at his residence, as the result of an apparent heart attack. It has been almost a year to the day that his beloved wife, Virginia was called home. He is now reunited with her. Tom was born in Chicago, and was a long time Shorewood resident. A Vietnam U.S. Marine Corps veteran. Tom's occupation was his greatest love in life aside from his family. He loved going to work every day, he loved what he did, he loved the people he met and he loved the game of golf. Tom has been teaching golf for more than 43 years. He began his career as Assistant Pro at Statesville Country Club, Statesville, NC. In 1987, he decided to focus his career on teaching and became Director of Instruction for Joliet Park District. In 1990, he joined the teaching staff at Cog Hill Golf Club, Lemont, IL (home of the Western Open). In 1997, he opened up "O'Connor Golf Training Academy", now at Inwood Golf Course, Joliet, IL. In 2003, he became the University of St. Francis Women's Golf Coach. As a tribute to his life time devotion to golf, he was awarded the 2009 PGA Bill Heald Career Achievement Award. A Quarter Century PGA Professional, 1996 IPGA Senior Stroke Play Champion, Timber Trails Golf Club, Featured Columnist, Publinks Magazine, Featured Columnist Joliet Herald News, Golf Tip of the Week, Featured Instructor on Golf Scene, Fox 32, Host of Golf Talk with Tom O'Connor, WJOL Radio1340AM 1990-2001, Key Note Speaker 2001, 2002, 2003 South Side Golf Expo, Instructor to 2000 Illinois High School State Champion, Nationally Ranked Jr. Players, Plantation Jr. Tour Ranked Players, and President of "Doctors of Golf" (Teaching Aid Company). Survived by three daughters, Jackie (Mike) Lendzion of Rolling Meadows, Becky Franklin and Terry (Steve) Funk both of Pekin, IL; six grandchildren, Nick Lendzion of Shorewood, IL, Kevin (Laura) Lendzion of Roscoe, IL, Samantha Lendzion of Rolling Meadows, IL, Katie (Shae) Birkey of Washington, IL, Tyler (Dara) Funk of Silverdale, WA and Molly Tesdall of Pekin, IL; three great-grandchildren, Emma Weirich of Batavia, IL, Logan Lendzion of Roscoe, IL and Brooks Birkey of Washington, IL. Preceded in death by his wife of 39 years, Virginia M. (nee Garmon) O'Connor (2011); his sister, Janelle; and his parents. Funeral Services for Thomas E. O'Connor will be Thursday, December 13, 2012 at 8:00 p.m. at the funeral home chapel. Cremation Rites will be accorded following services. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the University of St. Francis Girls Golf Team in his memory. Visitation Thursday, 2-8 p.m. at: FRED C. DAMES FUNERAL HOME 3200 Black at Essington Rds., Joliet For information: (815)741-5500 www.fredcdames.com
Published in The Herald-News on Dec. 12, 2012
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