obituary | WGLT



A longtime public servant who fought against intolerance in Bloomington-Normal has died.

Bob Loy
District 87

The legacy of Bloomington High School’s swimming coach began in 1979 and will continue long after his sudden death this week. 

Gene Budig
Elise Amendola / AP

UPDATED 4:30 p.m. | Former Illinois State University President Gene Budig, who would later become the president of Major League Baseball's American League, has died at the age of 81.

Jim Thompson
M. Spencer Green / AP

Former Illinois Gov. James R. Thompson has died. He was 84.

Thompson was known as “Big Jim” during a long career that eventually made him the state’s longest-serving chief executive.

His wife, Jayne, told the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun-Times that he died shortly after 8 p.m. Friday at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab in Chicago. The Tribune, citing a police report, reported Thompson had been recovering there for several weeks after suffering heart problems.

Larry Lyons and Steve Adams

A voice synonymous with Redbird athletics is silenced.

A giant of Illinois agriculture has died. Former state representative, state agriculture director and longtime 4-H booster Gordon Ropp was 87 years old.

Ron Dozier
Eleventh Judicial Circuit

Colleagues are remembering the life and career of former McLean County state’s attorney and retired judge Ron Dozier, who died Monday after a long illness. He was 73.

Ken Behrens
Don Munson/"Morning Was My Middle Name" book

Quality local journalism from WGLT depends on your financial support. We need new contributors on Giving Tuesday who will give $10 a month. Please consider a contribution to keep public media strong in Central Illinois. If you already contribute to WGLT, thank you!

Jack Snyder
Calvert & Metzler Memorial Home

One of Bloomington-Normal's most prolific developers is being remembered for his vision and enthusiasm in helping the community grow.

Joe on the ice
Jim Ferrier / Courtesy

Joe Olson came from a hockey family. And he created a new one in Bloomington-Normal.

Rick Heiser
Illinois State University

A man who served west Bloomington and the larger Twin City community for decades has died.

Frank McSwain Sr.
Mt. Pisgah Church

A pastor who served his west Bloomington church for 35 years is being remembered as a dynamic, kind-hearted man who helped many people far beyond the churches walls.