Mass of Christian Burial
Obituary of Robert E. Shea
Robert E. “Gene” Shea
Age 88, of Joliet, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, April 3, 2019, at AMITA St. Joseph Medical Center with his loving family by his side. Born February 14, 1931 in Galesburg, IL, he was the son of Leslie and Ann (nee Cavanaugh) Shea.
Gene proudly served his country in the United States Army in the Korean War. He was awarded the Purple Heart for being wounded in action. Last May Gene had the opportunity to participate in Honor Flight Chicago. He earned his Bachelor's Degree at St. Ambrose University and completed his education with a Master's Degree in Physical Therapy at the University of Iowa. Gene served his community as Chief of Physical Therapy at Silver Cross Hospital for many years. He then opened his own physical therapy clinic, which he operated until he retired in 1995. Gene was a compassionate, caring physical therapist, who was dedicated to his patients.
Gene was a longtime parishioner of St. Patrick’s Parish and served on the athletic board, parish council and as president of the school board. He also served as president of St. Joe’s Little League Baseball.
He was a devoted husband to Rosie with whom he enjoyed 60 wonderful years of marriage. Gene was a dedicated father to his eight children. He and Rosie enjoyed traveling and family vacations, especially the annual Shea Family trip to Union Pier, Michigan for the past 25 years.
Gene also enjoyed many years at Braidwood Recreation Club and Siesta Key, Florida.
Some of Gene’s favorite times were spent on the golf course with his many golf buddies. Gene was a people person, who enjoyed drinks with friends and his Thursday night outings.
Gene was an avid sports fan, who could frequently be seen and heard in the stands of his kids’ and grandkids’ sporting events, offering his unfiltered and unsolicited advice to the officials and coaches.
Gene is survived by his eight children, Debbie (Mike) Wittmann, Mike (Roxanne) Shea, Teresa (Brent) Ostoich, Dave (Rita) Shea, Jeff Shea (Sullivan Hester), Kathy (Bill) Duffy, John (Amy) Shea and Karen (Mike) Sheppard; 26 grandchildren, Michael, Colleen, and Kathleen Wittmann; Megan, Kelly, and Ryan (Sofia Shea-Kvist) Shea; Kevin, Nicholas, Julia, Connor, and Madeline Ostoich; Rob (Heather) Hamilton; Christina (Aaron) Manheimer; Collin and Caitlin Shea; Reilly and Beckett Shea; Jack, Shea, Patrick, and Kate Duffy; Colleen and Ella Shea; Seamus, Casey, and Kaleigh Sheppard; four great-grandchildren, Ben, Ellia, and Brooklyn Hamilton; and Noah Manheimer; sister, Roseann Shea; sister-in-law, Beverly Quigley and many nieces, nephews and friends.
He was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Rosemary (nee Quigley) Shea; his parents; and brother, Jim (Patricia) Shea.
We are grateful for the wonderful care he received from his many doctors and nurses at AMITA St. Joseph Medical Center. We would especially like to thank his devoted caregivers, Alma and Eva.
Visitation for Gene Shea will be held on Sunday, April 7, 2019, from 2:00 until 7:00 p.m., at the Fred C. Dames Funeral Home, 3200 Black at Essington Rds., Joliet. Funeral Services will be held on Monday April 8, 2019, at 9:00 a.m. from the funeral home to the Church of St. Jude, 2212 McDonough St., Joliet, where a Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m. As it was Gene’s request, cremation rites have been accorded and he will be interred with his wife at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Elwood, IL at a later date. His organs were generously donated to Gift of Hope. In lieu of flowers, memorials in his name to Honor Flight Chicago, 9701 W. Higgins Road, Suite 310, Rosemont, IL 60018 would be appreciated. For more information, please call (815) 741-5500 or visit his Memorial Tribute at www.fredcdames.com
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