Theatre School Complex

Theatre School Complex
Theatre School Complex, 2013. Photo courtesy: Elaine M. Beaudoin

Introduction

About the DePaul Emeritus Society

DePaul University values its ongoing connections with its faculty and staff retirees, as it values their past contributions to the university’s mission. The DePaul University Emeritus Society was founded in 2008 with the merger of the Staff Emeritus Society and the Emeritus Professors Association. The Society is sponsored by the University’s Office of Mission and Values.

The purpose of the DePaul Emeritus Society is to provide a means for ongoing connection, communication, and socialization between the university and its emeritus faculty and staff, and between individual retirees whose professional lives were for so many years dedicated to university service.

Photos, events, and information of interest to members of the DePaul Emeritus Society will be posted to this blog. Please take a look, add your comment, offer to be an "author" or just enjoy.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

In Memoriam - John Willets


The Rev. Dr. John Walker Willets, 71, of Jacksonville, died Thursday, Dec. 13, 2012, at Heritage Health in Jacksonville. 

He was born July 6, 1941, in Moweaqua, the son of Carl Austin and Norma Ann Walker Willets. He is survived by one sister, Marian (George) Manker of White Hall; and seven nieces and nephews, Bonnie (Rod) Wallace of Jacksonville, Vicky Smith of Houston, TX, Robin (Karen) Manker of Chapin, Fred Manker of Springfield, Brenda (Jud) Hawk of White Hall, Bob Manker of Literberry and Julie Manker (Zach Pointer) of Springfield. He was preceded in death by his parents; and one sister, Virginia Arlene Carroll.

Dr. Willets graduated from Jacksonville High School in 1959 and from Illinois College in 1963. After graduating, he taught at Griggsville Junior High School and then taught Chemistry at Jacksonville High School. In 1969, he joined the U.S. Navy and was stationed in San Diego. After his discharge, he became an Associate Administrator at Burnham Hospital in Champaign. During that time, he attended the University of Illinois and received two Masters Degrees and a Ph.D. in Psychology. He then moved back to California to teach at Redlands University. While there, he was ordained as an Episcopalian Deacon by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. In 1995, he began teaching at DePaul University in Chicago, which he continued to do until shortly before his death. He had also been an Adjunct Professor at Lincoln Land Community College.

John was a member of Jacksonville Kiwanis Club, the Jacksonville Elks and the ACLU. He was instrumental in starting the Do What It Takes Committee and was very involved with Jacksonville Promise. He was a gourmet chef, a wine connoisseur and a well-known computer whiz. He always put others first, and was the quintessential teacher. He was very community oriented, and he celebrated people for their differences. John loved his family, and he especially enjoyed spending time with his cats.

A memorial service will be held 2 p.m. Saturday, December 15, 2012, at Buchanan & Cody Funeral Home in Jacksonville. Burial will be held at a later date at the Calvary Episcopal Church Columbarium in Lombard. Memorials are suggested to Jacksonville Promise, Jacksonville Food Bank or Calvary Episcopal Church in Lombard. Condolences may be left at www.buchanancody.com.

Buchanan & Cody Funeral Home and Crematorium, December 15, 2012
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John Willets, beloved teacher and mentor at the School for New Learning passed away on  December 13.  John Willets joined the faculty of the School for New Learning in 1995, serving as an Assistant Professor  for several years before moving to Jacksonville, Illinois, his hometown. There he continued his association with SNL, teaching online courses as part time faculty.  Dr. Willets was ordained as an Episcopalian Deacon and received a doctorate in Psychology from the University of Illinois. He was known for putting others first, and was the quintessential teacher. He was very community oriented, and he celebrated people for their differences. A memorial service was held on December 15, 2012, at Buchanan & Cody Funeral Home in Jacksonville. Burial will be held at a later date at the Calvary Episcopal Church Columbarium in Lombard. We will share more when we know more.

SNL will also host a small remembrance service for John in January. We'll share more details about this when we reopen on January 2nd.

Memorials are suggested to Jacksonville Promise, Jacksonville Food Bank or Calvary Episcopal Church in Lombard. For an obituary about John, please follow this link - http://www.buchanancody.com/fh/obituaries/obituary.cfm?o_id=1873758&fh_id=12328

Our condolences go out to the family, friends, and univesity colleagues who mourn the loss of John. May he rest in peace.  Thank you.

Mission and Values, December 18, 2012

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