Obituary of our long-time director and tireless supporter of the Cemetery.
Edward F. Vodicka passed on Saturday evening, December 14, 2013 at Hinsdale Hospital after a lengthy illness. His wife of 55 years Charlotte and son Edward W. were at his side.
Ed was born at Lewis Memorial Hospital in Chicago in September of 1933. He and his parents Edward and Mildred (Podojil) lived briefly in Chicago, but he grew up in Cicero. His father Edward was a bricklayer and general contractor, and his mother Mildred was a homemaker who also worked at Western Electric prior to and during WW II.
Ed attended Mary Queen of Heaven Grade School in Cicero, and was a proud graduate of Fenwick High School in Oak Park (class of ’51.) He and his family moved to what would become Woodside Estates in Oak Brook in the summer of 1951, where he worked with his father in the building business, developing real estate and constructing many homes in Oak Brook and the western suburbs during the post-war building boom of the late 1940’s and ’50s. He attended St. Procopius College in Lisle (now Benedictine University) from 1951-1955 and graduated with a B.S. in Economics, with a minor in education. Ed was a life-long music fan, studying the accordion from his early grade school days, and played semi-professionally in several dance bands in Cicero and Berwyn during his high school and college years. He was also recruited to play tuba in the Fenwick High School Band, and did so for all four years. In addition, he was “drafted” as a ringer in the Morton High School Band for their summer of 1949 trip to New York, representing the Cicero Lions Club.
In the spring of 1954 while still in college, he started a specialty retail woodwork and building supply business in south Elmhurst, Waters Millwork Sales. It will celebrate its 60th anniversary in March of 2014. Ed continued on with his father’s general contracting work as well as pursuing his real estate and development business, much of which has been centered around his father’s birthplace of Braidwood, Illinois.
Ed was introduced to Charlotte Ann Bateman of Downers Grove on a blind date on January 29, 1955. He and Charlotte married in February of 1958. They had two children, Edward W. (Donna) and Barbara Ann. He is survived by all four. Visitation is at Adolf Funeral Home in Willowbrook from 2-9pm Wednesday December 18th. The funeral will be at 10:30am from Adolf Funeral Home on Thursday December 19th, and proceed to the Bohemian National Cemetery of Braidwood for burial, where Ed was also a 3rd generation and long-time director. Donations may be made in his name to The Bohemian National Cemetery of Braidwood, Ltd. (501.c13) at www.bohemiannational.org