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Obituaries

Illinois Lawyer Now lists obituaries for ISBA members. Please send information, including local newspaper links, to cbonjean@isba.org

Robert Frankenstein
Robert Frankenstein
When attorney Robert Frankenstein introduced himself, people did a double take.

“What did you say your name was?’” they’d ask.

“Frankenstein, like the monster,” he’d reply.

If people pronounced it “Franken-STEIN,” he’d sometimes channel Gene Wilder from the movie “Young Frankenstein,” correcting them with a tongue-in-cheek hissy fit.

“It’s not Franken-STEIN, it’s Franken-STEEN,” he’d say.

But “then he would say, ‘whatever,’ ’’ said his daughter, Jamie Steckler.

Mr. Frankenstein, who really did pronounce it Franken-STEEN, went from being a kid who grew up in a West Rogers Park apartment to a lawyer who traveled the world, skiing and scuba diving. He tooled around Glencoe in his Corvette, his Labrador retriever Max riding shotgun, long ears fluttering behind him.

He died last month at his Palm Springs home at age 70. He was diagnosed in December with Stage IV lung cancer, said Susan, his wife of 43 years.

Read the full obituary in the Chicago Sun-Times

Tomas M. Magdich
Tomas M. Magdich
The Honorable Tomas M. Magdich of Dixon died Tuesday, April 15, 2014. He was 74.

He was born July 2, 1939, in Gary, Ind., to a bookkeeper, Ann Magdich, and a carpenter, Milan Magdich. His working-class childhood was made difficult by the death of his father at the age of 13. He was raised by a hardworking, single mother in the 1950s, and delivered papers to contribute to the family’s grocery money. Although his life was difficult, from early on, he always had a passion for school and learning.

Tom graduated from Lew Wallace High School in 1957 in Gary, and then attended Ripon College. At Ripon College, he met his future spouse, Judith Lawson. He became president of his fraternity, where he developed many lifelong friendships. And it was at Ripon College where he was mentored to seek a career in law after graduating with a degree in philosophy.

While attending Northwestern Law School, he discovered his passion for the law and his lifelong mission to help people seek justice. During his first year, he married Judith Lawson on Aug. 11, 1962. During his last year of law school, he found himself in need of employment due to the impending birth of their first child. A job opportunity with the firm Gunner and Keller is how he came to Dixon 50 years ago, a place that he thought would be a temporary home but grew to endear.   

Robert S. Krockey
Robert S. Krockey
Robert S. Krockey, 73, of Shorewood, Ill., and Fountain Hills, Arizona, passed away March 29, 2014. He was born to the late Sol and Miriam Krockey, December 6, 1940, in Chicago.

Mr. Krockey was a proud Roosevelt Rough Rider, Class of June, 1958; a graduate with a B.A. in Accounting from the University of Illinois, Class of 1962; a Certified Public Accountant since 1965; a graduate of DePaul University School of Law, 1966; and a member of the Illinois Bar since 1966.

Mr. Krockey practiced law in Joliet from 1967-2014. He was senior partner of the law firm, KCCC (Krockey, Cernugel, Cowgill and Clark). He served on numerous bar association committees and was a mentor to many. Mr. Krockey was a board member and President of Will County Legal Assistance Program for many years, devoting many hours of legal aid for the poor.

He was President of Will County Sheltered Workshop and United Cerebral Palsy, where he was recipient of the Mel Larson Award. Mr. Krockey also was a member of the Joliet Jewish Congregation, serving as Vice President at the time of his passing. He was a proud, very amateur musician with Southwest Community Band, Joliet Junior College Band, Bicentennial Park Band; a devoted University of Illinois alum, and a rabid Bears, Cubs, White Sox, Blackhawks, and Bulls fan. More than anything, he was a lawyer who was devoted to his clients, and his greatest joy were his four grandchildren.

Anthony "Tony" G. Catullo, age 70, of Crown Point, IN passed away on Saturday, March 29, 2014.

Tony graduated from John Marshall Law School in 1970 and was actively practicing law in the Chicago south suburbs for over 39 years. He was an avid golfer, scuba diver and amateur photographer.

Beloved husband of Patrice "Patty" (nee McCormack); loving father of Anthony M. Catullo and James N. Catullo; brother of Patrick A. (Karen) Catullo; brother-in-law to Michael (Judy) McCormack; Brian (Carla) McCormack; and James (Marilee) McCormack; uncle to Christopher (Shannon) Catullo and Nicholas J. Catullo; great uncle to Alessia and Nicholas Catullo. Tony was preceded in death by his parents, Nicholas J. and Eva J. Catullo.

Services have been held. Sign hte guestbook at www.GeisenFuneralHome.com

Theodore Gebhardt
Theodore Gebhardt
Theodore "Ted" William Gebhardt, age 51, of Dunlap, passed away on Tuesday, March 18, 2014 in Metamora.

Ted was born on December 21, 1962 in Peoria to Richard Lawrence and Sandra Lee (Herman) Gebhardt. He married Carol Rae Walker on September 3, 2011.

Ted is survived by his wife, Carol, of Dunlap, IL; his son, Brock Gebhardt of Springfield, IL; his daughter, Samantha Gebhardt of Dunlap, IL; his step-children, Eddie Elson of East Peoria, IL, Brian Wikoff of West Peoria, IL and Troy Wikoff of Dunlap, IL; his step-grandchild, Anthony Elson; his parents; two brothers, Rick (Maritza) Gebhardt of Dunlap, IL and Randy Gebhardt of East Moline, IL; his sister, Jill (Joel) Dryden of Peoria, IL; and seven nieces and nephews, Meghan Dryden, Micah Dryden, Matthew Dryden, Cassie Gebhardt, Dane Gebhardt, Rachelle Mewshaw, and Katarina Gebhardt.  He was preceded in death by his maternal and paternal grandparents and his aunt, Margie Strand.

Ted graduated with a Bachelor's degree from the University of Illinois, Champaign in 1985. He also received his law degree from the  U of I. Ted was admitted to the IL Bar Association and practiced law for several years. He was the Operations Director for Central Pool Supply/Pride Manufacturing. He was a member of the TKE fraternity and was a big supporter of the Downs Syndrome Organization, the South Side Mission and of the Washburn Community. He also attended Westminster Presbyterian Church in Peoria.

Paul Karlstrom
Paul Karlstrom
Paul Karlstrom was born Jan. 3, 1920, in Peoria, the son of the Rev. Ossian Leanard and Mabel Olivia Karlstrom.

His family moved to Rankin, where his father passed away in 1926. Mr. Karlstrom graduated from the University of Illinois in 1942 and was drafted into the Army. He was aboard ship with the intended invasion force when the atom bombs were dropped on Japan.

After discharge as a first lieutenant with occupation forces, he entered the U of I Law School, graduating in 1950. He opened his law office in 1951 on the U of I campus.

In 1950, he married Doris June Case of Arcola, who passed away in 1998.

He is survived by three sons, Ron, Scott and Kirk (Pam) Karlstrom; two grandchildren, Krista (Clayton) Overstreet and Kai; and one great-granddaughter, Kaitlyn.

He was a member and president of the Champaign Exchange Club and a member of the Champaign Kiwanis Club, and served on the Board of Trustees of Augustana College in Rock Island for eight years.

He was a member of the Champaign Chapter of the American Federation of Musicians since 1937, serving as secretary since 1966. He also served on the law committee of the International Musicians Union and was president of the Illinois Conference of Musicians.

He taught law with the U of I College of Engineering for 27 years, retiring as lecturer emeritus.

He was a member of the Illinois Bar Association and the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association. He was a member and past president of the University Club.

He was organizer and first president of the Campus Businessmen's Association.

Richard Elrod
Richard Elrod
Former Cook County Sheriff Richard J. Elrod has died at age 80.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Elrod died Saturday of liver cancer and cirrhosis.

Elrod served four consecutive terms as sheriff between 1970 and 1986 and was a Cook County Circuit Court judge from 1988 until his death.

Before he was elected sheriff, Elrod was an attorney for the city of Chicago. In 1969 he suffered a broken neck while assisting a police officer who was apprehending a man. As a result, Elrod used a crutch to walk. He was subsequently elected to the Illinois House for one term before his successful run for sheriff.

His son, Steven Elrod, says his father was proud to be recognized for his efforts at youth counseling and drug awareness.

Mary J. McNichols, 57, of Downers Grove, lost her brave battle with cancer on April 6, 2014. Beloved wife of Patrick Tallon; loving mother of John Tallon; cherished daughter of John and the late Lois Jeane McNichols. Treasured sister of John Patrick (Michelle) McNichols and Megan (David, M.D.) Mahon; dear sister-in-law of Joan (Robert) Swigon. Special aunt and cousin of many.

Mary graduated from York High School in Elmhurst and earned a degree in vocal performance from Illinois Wesleyan University. She earned her J.D. from IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. Mary was an accomplished lawyer and a talented singer, director and teacher. She combined her love of music and law as a soloist and director of the Chicago Bar Association Christmas Spirits production for many years.

More recently, she opened the McNichols Studio and shared her musical gifts with young students and created a performance venue, Mama Mac’s Cabaret, in Downers Grove. Loving, wise, creative and kind, Mary touched many lives and will be dearly missed.

Donations to the American Cancer Society appreciated. For funeral info: 630-852-3595.

RoxAnne RochesterRoxAnne L. Rochester passed away on Saturday, April 12, in Florida after valiantly battling cancer. There will be burial services in Florida and a memorial service in Chicago, details are below.

She was a staff attorney in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Law Division, where she was responsible for reviewing, analyzing and recommending the appropriate disposition of contested pre-trial motions in legal disputes involving personal injury, contracts, business torts and construction litigation.

Before joining the Circuit Court of Cook County, Ms. Rochester worked for 17 years in the private practice of law. Ms. Rochester was the founder and principal of the Law Offices of RoxAnne L. Rochester, a firm she spearheaded for over a decade.

Prior to her work in the private sector, Ms. Rochester served as a legal extern with the United States District Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois, and as a Law Clerk to Judge Richard L. Curry in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Chancery Division.

Beloved Richard Harbinger of Brentwood, Calif., passed away January 17 in Santa Monica. The family interred him at Mount Sinai Memorial Park Hollywood Hills.

He was born in Los Angeles in 1923 to Louis and Anne. He was married to his loving and lovely wife Annette Wong Harbinger.

He was a graduate of Fairfax High, UCLA, Princeton University and Notre Dame Law School. Richard was a member of the American Bar Association, the California Bar Association, the Illinois State Bar Association and the Beverly Hills Bar Association. He also served on the board of the Beverly Hills Bar Foundation and the International Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists. A mentor and teacher of the Chinese students and scholars at UCLA, he taught at law schools in China.