John J. Nokes
FUNERAL HOME
Suerth Funeral Home
6754 North Northwest Highway
Chicago, IL
John J.Nokes, 69, of Chicago. Retired District Chief of C.F.D. Passed away July 19, 2020 after a courageous battle with cancer. Beloved husband of Janice, nee Nixon. Loving father of Andrea (Ben) Steed, Jacob, Kelly, Amy (Johnny) Bomar and Sean Nokes. Proud grandfather "Chief" of Ayla, Paxton, Annalis and Jaxen. Cherished companion to his dogs "Duke", "Gibbs" and "Roxie" Many years of service and mentorship with CTA, CPS, CFD, as a NIPSTA instructor and AeroCare Organ Transport driver. Longtime volleyball and football coach .

All services private.

Memorials may be made in John's name to: Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation at JDRF.org, Dr. Susan Love Foundation for Breast Cancer at Drsusanloveresearch.org, Henry Schueler 41&9 Foundation at Henryschueler.org/donate. Arrangements entrusted to M J Suerth Funeral Home- Peter Heneghan director. www.suerth.com


Published by Chicago Tribune on Jul. 22, 2020.
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72 Entries
I would like to thank Johns family for sharing him with us. I met John after joining the CFD. He mentored me while studying for the Captains Test. As Im sure he did for many others before and after me. One of the most selfless men I know. His legacy includes hundreds if not thousands of students that he tutored. So that I know that his spirit will live on through us.
Jim Russell
March 30, 2021
John and I became friends at NIU. "Friends"..... No better friend could you have than John. Always there for you and with that smile. We all became better and stronger than we knew because of John. And fun, OMG! Such a wonderful person and my rock. Rest in peace my dear friend. Sincere condolences to Jan and family.
Sam Polki
Friend
August 6, 2020
We are so sorry to hear your sad news. We will keep all of you in our thoughts and prayers. Anne and Jamie Toohey
Anne Toohey
Neighbor
August 6, 2020
Chief Nokes was a wonderful, compassionate, caring and family man
that believed in giving back(and that he did). Because of Chief Nokes, I became an engineer. I attend his training class wherever he scheduled. Chief Nokes treated all equally. The only thing he required was that you were dedicated and sincere in learning the job(no nonsense). Chief Nokes will be missed. My sincere condolences to the family. We will all meet again. Prays for the family.

Elaine Hamlet
Coworker
July 27, 2020
He was always very good to me. Jonh and Jan would always take me to plays, movies, out to eat and he always bought me my candy and cheesecake. He will be missed. Prayers to Jan and family. Love Mom
Marge Nixon
Mother
July 25, 2020
I will never forget John’s “reach” when we were playing darts! He was a good sport about our teasing. He was also fun to tease about what we were going to do with the Sunshine Fund $$. I will miss him.
Sandy Wydra
Friend
July 25, 2020
I had the pleasure of working with John at Schurz High School. He was an inspiration to so many. He was intelligent, diligent and jovial. The students were thrilled when John would substitute, but knew he was no nonsense. With his history background, I used to ask John, perhaps jokingly, if he would like to teach when he retired... What a great gentleman! My sincerest condolences are extended.
Sharon Cohen
Friend
July 23, 2020
Sharon Cohen
Friend
July 23, 2020
Thank you, John. You inspired me,RIP
Stephen Clarke
Acquaintance
July 23, 2020
It is a true loss for us to lose a great person like John Nokes. Rest In Peace my friend.
Patrick Brown
Friend
July 23, 2020
John was truly a good guy. I always enjoyed seeing and talking with him in the neighborhood.
Art Schmakel
Neighbor
July 22, 2020
Rest in peace my good friend! You will be missed! Not only for your knowledge but unique sense of humor!
Terry Gavin
Friend
July 22, 2020
To the family of John Nokes I was sadden to hear of John passing so me and my family the Knox family send our condolences to to you and know God is with you every step of the way. Retirees District Sylvester Knox
Sylvester Knox
Coworker
July 22, 2020
Will miss your thoughts and info at Our Saturday morning coffee meets
RIP John !!!!
Art Rosenquist , Retired CFD
ARTHUR ROSENQUIST
Coworker
July 22, 2020
John Nokes was a good friend, my sincere condolences to John's family .
I have nothing but fond memories of the great times ,softball,some cocktails ,just a great guy.rest in peace ❤ God Bless
Wally Pecs
Friend
July 22, 2020
We've lost an irreplaceable friend... We miss you, John.
Patrick and Gail Shaw
Friend
July 22, 2020
Ben Stephens
Friend
July 22, 2020
John was the kind of person who mad a positive impression on all who came to know him. I knew John thru his involvement as a substitute teacher at Schurz. His sense of humor and good nature was second to none. I always looked forward to seeing him at Schurz.
Frank Preo
Frank Preo
Friend
July 22, 2020
John was a student when we started teaching at Lake View. He was a great athlete and student. Lake View was a wonderful place to teach because of students like John. John continued to give back to Lake View by helping at the school when ever he could. His life exemplifies what can be accomplished when students are motivated to succeed.
Rest in peace John, you will be deeply mislsed.
Ruth (Craddock) Jennings
Tom Jennings
Thomas F. Jennings
Teacher
July 22, 2020
I competed against John in high school and we had nice conversations whenever we met in the many years since. He was a sweet man. Kenny Sutchar. Mather. Class of ‘69.
Kenny
Friend
July 22, 2020
My Condolences on the passing of John. We knew each other through Schurz and the fire department. He will be missed by all that knew him. A very nice man. Cathy Forde
Cathy Forde
Coworker
July 22, 2020
I’ve known John since high school and I can honestly say I have never known a more dedicated and compassionate human being. He always made time to help others with their problems, assisted many more to become good fire fighters and provided guidance to many high school students. John is one person who definitely made a positive difference and impact on Chicago. Rest In Peace Chief.
Jim Bonk
Friend
July 22, 2020
My sincere sympathy.

Susa
Susan LaBonte
Friend
July 22, 2020
Heidi Hoffmann
July 21, 2020
John was my first Chief when I came in the job, we had the common thread of both attending NIU which we would often joke about. He was friend and mentor to me and so many others and will be sincerely be missed. Thoughts and prayers to the Nokes family.
Chris Fortier
Friend
July 21, 2020
So sorry for the loss of Chief Nokes. He was one of a kind and great firefighter. Learned a lot from him. RIP Brother.
Capt Rob Weel CFD
Rob Weel
Friend
July 21, 2020
So sorry for the loss of Chief Nokes. He was one of a kind and great firefighter. Learned a lot from him. RIP Brother.
Capt Rob Weel CFD
Rob Weel
Coworker
July 21, 2020
My condolences to the Nokes family. John was an outstanding person, not to mention an amazing role model to so many young men. He will truly be missed.
Ron Zagorski
Friend
July 21, 2020
It was a pleasure knowing John Nokes. I first me him at the RJ Quinn Academy where we were both instructors. He was always well respected by his peers and bosses alike. He was an experienced, knowledgeable and fair-minded fire chief. My sincere condolences are extended to his family and friends. God bless John Nokes.
Stephen C. Fugaj
Coworker
July 21, 2020
I worked with John at Schurz High School for many years. He was one of the most wonderful, kind and and caring persons that I have met throughout my life. He definitely will be missed by all who knew him. I am so sorry for your loss.
Rosemary Christenson
Friend
July 21, 2020
Many good memories of John when we worked together on Chicago Fire Department...got John's name in a old basketball scorebook early on in our careers together...showed it to him later on after 1st denying he played hoops and he just chuckled....that was John Good friend who was humbled and helped me eventually become Captain of Hook and Ladder Co 56 Thanks John
Kevin J Sampson
Coworker
July 21, 2020
Condolences to the family. I was a classmate and team mate of Johns thru high school and many Le Moyne grade school activities. He was a great athlete.
Rick LaFollette
Classmate
July 21, 2020
Sending healing prayers and comforting hugs to my sister and all my nieces, nephews and greats. So sorry for your loss. I wish you hope and healing when you're ready. Love you all.
Donna Nixon
Family
July 21, 2020
Our condolences, thoughts and prayers to the Nokes family during this time of sorrow.

May God bless you all.

Dianne, Paul & Caitlin Riedel
Dianne Riedel
Family
July 21, 2020
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
You are in our thoughts and prays.
Jim and Carol Wagner
July 21, 2020
My sincere sympathy to the Nokes family for the loss of John. John and I were roommates on road trips for NIU football games. We were very close at NIU and kept in touch after graduating. I will miss our lunches where John would inform me on the truth about Chicago politics and the real story behind the story with his inside knowledge. I will miss his friendship and loyalty. He was a great guy and he will be missed. I am truly saddened.
Fred Wittenmeier
Friend
July 21, 2020
My condolences to the Nokes family. John was an outstanding man! No matter what he decided to do, he put all his efforts into becoming the absolute best he could be. He was a mentor and role model to so many and will be missed by all who knew him.
Cliff Pierce
Friend
July 21, 2020
Mr. Nokes (I can't imagine attempting to call him by his first name!) kept my brother and I in line as our neighbor for many, many years in Portage Park. Growing up with his family was a joy and we share in their sorrow at his loss. He was a big personality and his children were so lucky to have him. Thinking of you all.
Emilie Yount
Friend
July 21, 2020
I had the honor and pleasure of working with John. John had that quiet soft spoken way about him filled with insight and knowledge, John had a way of calming any situation he encountered. Rest In Peace my friend, I will always miss those morning coffees.
Pat Kehoe
Friend
July 21, 2020
John, Too many Great memories!!! RIP Big Guy
Rich/ Whitey Reimer
Friend
July 21, 2020
John Gies
July 21, 2020
prayers and condolences extended to the Nokes family; John was a gentleman, a mentor who helped many, through his knowledge and teaching of tactics and FD protocol; a friend. Rest In Peace John
Bob Rojas
Friend
July 21, 2020
Grammar school, HS classmate, teammate & friend. John was truly a unique person, with exceptional leadership qualities. My deepest condolences to his family. John will be missed.
Art Anton
Friend
July 21, 2020
Words can not express how saddened we are to hear of a loss. I known John Since High School a Great Man gone so soon ! May he rest in peace.
Mike Seguban
Classmate
July 21, 2020
Words can't express how saddened we are to hear of a loss of John Nokes I known him since high school we worked together for many years in the project . May he rest in peace Good Man Gone to soon !
Mike Seguban
Classmate
July 21, 2020
My deepest condolences to the Nokes Family. Chief, I will Miss You! RIP
Dede
July 21, 2020
My deepest condolences to the Nokes Family! Chief, I will miss you! RIP
Dede
July 21, 2020
I had the pleasure and honor of working with John. For a brief period, I was his driver when he was a Deputy District Chief and we always had great conversations that were heartfelt. My deepest and sincere condolences to his family.
John Scheinpflug
Friend
July 20, 2020
John is a special person, a friend, and mentor we came on the fire department together. John was such a giving person he always had time for you. My son Charlie will know the legend of John Nokes. John as a boss on CFD was awesome he was a leader he showed by example he gave you great confidence to be a fireman. John was a true Gentleman he will be missed. Love you John rest in peace. Charlie Bliss
Charlie Bliss
Friend
July 20, 2020
RIP Brother
john Kownacki
Coworker
July 20, 2020
John was a great guy when I was a kid at Hawthorne playground. There were great athletes that came there to play basketball, hockey and softball and John was one them. He always had time to play with us young guys and he taught me a lot about sports, he had a big heart and he gave a lot to anybody who needed help or encouragement, that was John Nokes . Im glad I got to work with him at Lakeview and in the fired department he was a man of integrity ,man of honor and man of loyalty. That was John Nokes. He always gave encouragement in CFD and was a good instructor. I will miss this gentle bear for all he gave to others. Lets remember him with his walk and his coffee at Starbucks he enjoy so much.RIP John . Ill be at Starbucks to have coffee and think of you. You are to all of us an awesome friend, and mentor.
Carmelo Flores
Friend
July 20, 2020
So sorry for your loss. I recently found a picture of our LeMoyne 8th grade graduation class. I guess we had known each other since the early 60s all the way thru high school.
My sincerest condolences.
Mitchell Lirtzman MD
Friend
July 20, 2020
Great person I've ever meet he let me come to Engine 94 and ride my first time learned alot from him funny guy that you would want to be around care about you will always remember him
Joe Durbin
Friend
July 20, 2020
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
William E Monroe
Coworker
July 20, 2020
I will long remember John as being extremely congenial, having a very balanced demeanor and being a strong supporter of Carl Schurz High School Athletics. He truly enriched, enhanced and energized all of his friends at Carl Schurz High School, THE "Home of the Bulldogs." lt was my good fortune to know John.
May He Rest In Peace AND May God Bless His Family.
Bob Bart
Friend
July 20, 2020
Great guy and will be missed by all! R. I.P. John!
Scott Fallen
Coworker
July 20, 2020
Ive known John since freshman year in college, great athlete, great guy and most of all great friend. Will miss going to NIU games together. My condolences to all the family
Gordon Nuber
Friend
July 20, 2020
I was fortunate to have John as a friend and Delpha brother in high school. RIP my friend!
Tony MORGANDO
July 20, 2020
Ive known John since high school and he was a great guy then, I was a freshman and he was a Senior. After our college days we would cross paths in the street or a bar and there was always a handshake and a hug. When he got on the fire department we would cross paths downtown where he would be driving a chief. He stop me one day and insisted that I take the firefighter test that was coming up and I told him I didnt want to take the test but he said that I wont regret it. I took the test and he was right, it was the best thing I did for myself. He had guided me throughout my career and was always there if I needed to talk. I loved John like my brother and Im going to miss him greatly. My condolences to his family and may he Rest In Peace. Love Danny Santana
Dan Santana
Friend
July 20, 2020
John was longtime friend from high school and great athlete.
He will be missed.

Our hearts go out to his family
Jim Rohrlack
Friend
July 20, 2020
John impressed everyone he worked with and for on the CFD. Good man!
Bob Flynn
Coworker
July 20, 2020
So sorry to hear of Johns passing. I worked with him on the fire dept. he was my batt. Chief when he was in the 3rd. We always had fun whenever he was around. He is a great man and fireman. Rest In Peace John.
Bob
Friend
July 20, 2020
My heart goes out to my sister and my nieces and nephews during this difficult time. I'm glad they can all be together to share in their grief and get through these tough times. I love you all so very much.
Pat Elzinga
Sister
July 20, 2020
Chief it was an honor to know and work with you. May you slumber in tranquil peace.
Richard Levin
Coworker
July 20, 2020
I was not only lucky to work with John, but I am also privileged to call him my friend. John will be greatly missed by many.
Tom Lynch
Friend
July 20, 2020
Great guy and great fireman RIP John
Mike Timothy
July 20, 2020
As a 23 year member of the Chicago Fire Department, I never met anyone like John. He was a kind, gentle, wise and supportive man. I would not be where I am in my career if not for John. He lit a fire that made me want to be better. John had a talent for that. My sincere condolences to Johns family. To my Chief, I say, Thank you for your wise words and the knowledge you shared. May you rest in eternal peace and glory.
Raul
Friend
July 20, 2020
RIP JOHN.RO.
ROLAND MURA
Friend
July 20, 2020
God Bless John and his entire family.
Chief was completely selfless in his work teaching young firemen and helping them prepare for promotional exams.
And always a consummate professional.
Ed Grunauer
Friend
July 20, 2020
John was a great leader, father, friend. He will be sincerely missed.
Gary Skirtich
Friend
July 20, 2020
May the love of friends and family carry you through your grief. Chief will always have a place in our hearts.
Ron and Denise Knop
Family
July 20, 2020
A teacher, a mentor, and an all-around great guy.
Thanks for your service and all that you did to pass on the traditions and practices of the Chicago Fire Department.
You will always be in our prayers, The Kelly Family.
July 20, 2020
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