William Dale Hovey
In William (Bill) Hovey style, he left this world peacefully late afternoon on Friday, November 1, 2019, with family by his side in Springfield.
Bill was born August 17, 1929, in Loami, Illinois, to the late Raymond and Sadie (Daugherty) Hovey, where he grew up with his siblings, the late Raymond Eugene and Mildred Marie.
Bill married his high school sweetheart, Lois, in June 1952. She passed away suddenly after 20 years of marriage in August 1972. Bill was fortunate to find love again, marrying Rosalind Kitchen in July 1994. She preceded him in death in November 2010.
Growing up in Loami as the youngest of three children, when he was not up to mischief, he loved spending his time throwing baseballs into a mattress propped against the fence. He turned his pitching skills into an athletic scholarship at Western Illinois University where he was a member of the WIU baseball team and Phi Sigma Epsilon fraternity. Bill went to the Philadelphia Phillies training camp and was set to play for them. However, while playing for WIU and attempting to tag another player out at second base he had a career-ending knee injury. Bill earned his Bachelor of Education degree in 1951. For those whose lives have been touched by Bill, they realize that God’s plan for him was to return home.
Bill began his career at Loami Grade School as the youngest principal ever in Illinois. In 1952, he moved on to teach and coach multiple sports at New Berlin High School. In 1960, he coached the now legendary New Berlin High School basketball team, to a record of 25-2. He completed his Master’s Degree in Educational Administration from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign prior to accepting the job of Principal of Glenwood High School in 1960.
He was appointed Superintendent of the Ball-Chatham School District in 1963, and served in that capacity for 25 years until his retirement in 1988. During his tenure as Superintendent, he contributed to the growth and influence of the schools. He was instrumental in passing a bond referendum to build Glenwood Intermediate School (then Glenwood Junior High School); and guided the district through two building additions to Glenwood High School (now Glenwood Middle School), Ball Elementary, and Chatham Elementary. Bill’s influence extended to the surrounding community as well. He, along with Ball-Chatham’s Board of Education, hosted developmental meetings that led to the establishment of Lincoln Land Community College. Additionally, Bill—along with six other superintendents—were the driving force in establishing the Sangamon Area Special Education District. He was also instrumental in the formation of the Capital Area Career Center. Bill continued to support the Ball-Chatham School District post-retirement by attending as many extra‐curricular activities and sporting events as time would allow.
Bill influenced the lives of thousands of children and adults. Wherever Bill went, he knew someone.
Bill was never at a loss for words. He never met a stranger. Wherever he went, he always had a story or joke to share.
Bill was an active member and supporter of Cherry Hills Church, Illinois Association of School Administrators, WIU Alumni Association, U of I Alumni Association, Springfield Sports Hall of Fame, and Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
People knew Bill as Billy, Uncle Bill, Mr. Hovey, Coach, Pops, Dad, Grandpa, and PaPa. He especially enjoyed going on his annual fishing trips whether it be Canada, or locally with his HICKS buddies. Bill also loved attending and watching sporting events, especially the annual IHSA state basketball tournaments. Bill was an avid Dodgers baseball fan and it seems only fitting that his departure coincided with the World Series.
Surviving are his sons, Robyn (Christie) of Springfield and Brian Hovey of Pembroke Pines, Florida, Bill Kitchen of Colorado Springs, Colorado, and daughter Betsy (Tim) Schroeder of Springfield; four grandchildren Erin, Michael, and Jack Schroeder and William Andrew Hovey; several nieces and nephews and their extended families; and sports comrade Bob Kaaz.
Bill’s family would like to thank everyone at The Estates, our extended family, and friends who loved, visited, and cared for him these last few years.
Visitation: Cherry Hills Church – Tuesday November 5 @ 3 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Funeral service: Cherry Hills Church – Wednesday November 6 @ 11 a.m. (visitation at 10 a.m.)
A private burial for family will take place later in Jacksonville.
For those who wish, memorial contributions may be made to the Ball-Chatham Educational Foundation (BCEF), Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA), or the Springfield Sports Hall of Fame.
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