John Patrick (Pat) Ward, Sr., 78, of Shiloh, IL, formerly of Springfield, died at 12:15 a.m., Sunday, October 17, 2010 at Memorial Hospital in Belleville, IL. He was born March 17, 1932 in Bloomington, IL to William V. (Jake) and Leone Costigan Ward who preceded him in death. He married Elizabeth A. Dellert on November 10, 1962 and she survives. Also surviving are two daughters Michelle (husband: Grant) Wuller of Belleview and Colleen (husband: Grant) Carruthers of Troy, IL, two sons John Patrick Ward, II and Robert Michael Ward both of Belleville, six grandchildren, one brother Tony (wife: Diane) Ward of Ada, MI and several nieces, nephews and cousins.
He graduated from Cathedral Boys High School in 1950. He attended Springfield Junior College and entered the Army in1952. While in the Army he was selected to attend Officer Candidate School in Fort Belvoir Virginia where he was commissioned as a First Lieutenant. After Fort Belvoir he was transferred to Fort Leonard Wood Mo, where he served as Fire Chief and Asst. Fire Marshall of the base. He retired from the Army and attended Oklahoma State University where he received a degree in Fire Science. After graduating he worked for Akron Brass and then formed his own Fire Prevention Company. He then was hired by the IL Board of Governors as Fire State Engineer and was responsible for the fire safety of four State Universities. While he was with the Board of Governors he formed the Springfield Rescue Squad and remained it’s Chief until he was elected as Commissioner of Public Health and Safety in 1975. He was the longest seated Commissioner of Public Health and Safety serving for 16 years. During his 4 terms he achieved a Class 1 Rating for the Springfield Fire Dept. 1 of only 7 in the country at that time. He retired from public office in 1991 and continued to work in the Safety related field.
Visitation: 4-7 p.m. Friday, October 22, 2010 at Staab Funeral Home.
Funeral Service: 10:00 a.m. Saturday, October 23, 2010 at Staab Funeral Home. Burial will follow at Oak Ridge Cemetery where military honors will be conducted.
In lieu of flowers: Memorials may be made to Backstoppers, Inc., PO Box 66927, St. Louis, MO 63116 or the Wounded Warrior Program, PO Box 758516, Topeka, KS 66675-8516
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