Deacon William Anthony Oleck died on Thursday, June 28, 2012. He was 90.
He leaves a legacy of love for the Lord and faithful service in the Catholic Church. A native of New Jersey, he lived for much of his life in Chattanooga, with his lovely Southern Belle, wife Rhoda Andrea Oleck.
Following her death in 2009, he moved to be closer to family in Grand Rapids, Mich., where he quickly made many friends. A natural storyteller, he loved to share tales of his life and adventures. He put his booming voice to use training soldiers in the armed forces during World War II and later proclaiming the gospel as a deacon for the Diocese of Knoxville.
A member of the first class of deacons to be ordained there, he served for more than 25 years. During that time, he spent many years ministering to prisoners. He was a Third Order (Lay) Carmelite and a Fourth Degree member of the Knights of Columbus. Deacon Bill was blessed with a sharp mind and a keen sense of humor. He lived with an attitude of prayerfulness and gratitude, encouraging those around him in their lives and faith.
In addition to his wife of 46 years, he was preceded in death by his sister-in-law, Lena Oleck.
He is survived by his beloved brothers, James Oleck and Alexander Oleck (Michelle), as well as many loving relatives and friends.
Mass of Christian burial will be held at 1:30 p.m. on Friday, July 6, at Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Chattanooga. Burial will follow at Mt. Olivet Cemetery.
The family will receive friends on Thursday, July 5, from 4-8 p.m. at the East Chapel of Chattanooga Funeral Home, 404 South Moore Road with the Rosary & Divine Mercy Chaplet prayed at 7 pm.
In lieu of flowers, please consider having masses offered at OLPH in Chattanooga/Saint Isidore in Grand Rapids, Michigan for the repose of Deacon Bill's soul, or making a donation to the Tuition Assistance Fund for Catholic Schools in the Diocese of Knoxville.
Please share your thoughts and memories at www.ChattanoogaEastChapel.com.