William J. Cooley
{ "" }
Share William's life story with friends and family
Send an Email
Or Copy this URL to Share
Age 76. Loving husband of 21 years to Jo Ann (nee Fujii). Devoted father of Liam and Mac Cooley. Adored son of the late James and Stella Cooley. Dear brother of Patricia (Dr. Michael) Inda, Robert, Dennis (Shirley), Dianne (late Dr. John) Zuzga, Timothy, Joseph (Johanna), John (Phyllis), and the late Fr. Stephen Cooley O.Carm. Loving uncle of many nieces and nephews. Bill was the 4th child of 9 born to his very Catholic parents. He entered the Carmelite Seminary at age 13. He was a caddy at South Shore Country Club and at age 17 was fortunate to be offered a scholarship to Northwestern University with the Evans Scholars program. He, but mostly his father, agreed that he should continue his Catholic education and because Northwestern was a secular school, turned the offer down. The program officials, although stunned by his declination, offered to place him at Marquette University. He accepted the offer which would very much shape the rest of his life because of the strong life-long bond he would share with his Marquette scholar classmates. After college and a term in the Peace Corps he became a Chicago Police Officer and attended night classes at DePaul University Law School. After graduation he worked in various Federal and State positions before establishing his own successful law practice. He was lucky to meet Jo Ann Fujii and they fell in love. They married and settled in Deerfield where they raised their two bright, wonderful sons Liam and Mac who are now college students. Bill was always a frustrated author and likely would have done a much better job if he could have written this himself. Due to Covid-19, masks are required and no loitering is preferred. Memorial visitation Friday, October 2, 2020, 4-8 p.m. at the Robert J. Sheehy & Sons Funeral Home, 9000 W. 151st Street, Orland Park, IL. Family and friends to gather Saturday, October 3, 2020 for Memorial Mass of the Resurrection 10:30 a.m. at Our Lady of the Woods Church, 10731 W, 131st Street, Orland Park, IL. Inurnment Holy Sepulchre Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial donation to Evans Scholars Foundation, 2501 Patriot Blvd., Glenview, IL 60626-8022, or on line at www.wgaesf.org. Please leave a memory for the family on William's Tribute Wall; your stories will bring comfort to the family. www.sheehyfh.com 708-857-7878

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in Chicago Tribune on Sep. 27, 2020.
Memories & Condolences
Not sure what to say?
4 entries
October 1, 2020
I will never forget our Myrtle Beach golf adventures and all of the good times our golf group shared thru the many years I have known Bill. Always good for a few crazy stories and a few drinks, we all shared a lot of laughs over the years. We were fortunate to be able to play our last round a South Shore CC last year, a special place for Bill and to finish up the evening having dinner and a few drinks, never thinking it would be our last time together......... Rest in peace my dear friend.
Mike Kukulinski
September 30, 2020
Bill Cooley was a guarantee of fun and good stories. We were neighbors as teens but didn't really get to know each other until law school. We just missed each other while Bill was in grad school at U of I and his mother expressed her concerns for her son at U of I in Champaign. Since I was also a student Bill's mom asked my mother to have me check up on Bill. After several attempts at his residence I admitted defeat and had to wait until we were both in law school to meet up. We both got a kick of the story about trying to locate him at Illinois (he was in the library!).
Being neighbors we had a lot in common, sports, stories, and handball. We had many great handball games at the firehouse at 55th and Woodlawn and many great sessions afterward at Jimmy's next door.
I visited with Bill when he lived and worked in Washington. He was quite a host except he didn't have a car and rod his bike all over - not my idea of exercise. He had some great stories about D.C.
After law school he left the CPD and practiced with me and some other classmates before going out on his own.
Bill was a reliable and loyal friend. He will be missed.

s drive
James Conlon
September 30, 2020
I first met Bill about 35 years ago when he was playing league softball in Lincoln Park and we would retire to Big John's for a drink or 10. Nearby, on my way in, was a dilapidated Honda with the windows down (which I later learned was Bill's) and 2 female golden retrievers that kind of told me that, although they'd love to be petted more than anything, it was their job to protect their precious Honda, so please Mister, don't come close and try to take our car. I later learned from Bill that "the girls," mother and daughter "preferred" to not be left in the car, so they diligently tore up all of the interior. It didn't phase Bill in the least--in fact he laughed describing it--the girls were family--the car didn't matter.
Soon after, Bill became a regular in our Wednesday afternoon golf group--one of up to 12 guys and always with a (mostly humorous) barb to opponent or partner alike. We did many golf trips to Myrtle Beach and Florida--the memories and stories will stay with us few survivors for the rest of our lives. Last summer, at Bill's urging and invitation, 4 of us played his beloved South Shore Country Club. It was the first time he had been back in a lot of years. The golf wasn't good anymore, but seeing Bill in his old element, describing his days there and showing off his course to us was a real treat. Thank God he, and us, had that opportunity.
Bill, it's hard to believe you won't tee it up again with us, or regale us over a "guy's dinner" anymore.
Condolences to you, Jo Ann, and Mac and Liam--and to the extended Cooley family. Your husband, father, and brother was one hell of a guy and totally unique and irreplaceable. Requiescat in Pace, William.
Al Moody
September 28, 2020
To Jo Ann, Liam, Mac and the entire Cooley Family - I was shocked and saddened to hear of Bill's passing. I was part of a Saturday morning golf group with Bill for many years. He was always great company, always competitive and always ready with a story or two from his many experiences as a police officer, lawyer, and his life in general. It was a great treat for me, after our golf days ended, to run into Bill on the train and catch up a bit between Union Station and Edgebrook where I, reluctantly, had to get off. I know that you will all miss him terribly. So will I and, I am sure, so will everyone who had the great pleasure of calling him a friend.
Stephen A. Gorman
Invite others to add memories
Share to let others add their own memories and condolences