William H. “Bill “ Erickson (November 22, 1939 — October 5, 2018) | PostIndependent.com
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William H. “Bill “ Erickson (November 22, 1939 — October 5, 2018)

William Erickson was born in Chicago, and grew up in the Rogers Park neighborhood, where his love of the outdoors began. He was able to hunt , and ride horses nearby. At this time, much of the neighborhood remained farmland, and there were stables and bridle paths within walking distance. Bill went to Amundsen High School where he was able to play football. He excelled at the sport, and continued playing while attending University of Illinois.

At the age of 21, Bill joined the Chicago Police Department. During his 31 years of service, most of which were as a Detective, he served in roles that covered many parts of the city, and made many life-long friends.

Bill married Jan Boekenhauer, and from that union had two daughters, Kristin and Karin. He later married Diana Sobczak with whom he had two sons, Neil and Michael. Bill, Diana and his two sons relocated to Rifle, Colorado, in 1991 where he lived for 26 years. Bill enjoyed working in the fields growing hay for his horses. His ease with striking conversations with just about anyone allowed him to make many friends in their new town. He was also able to spend a great deal of time horseback riding, hiking and snowshoeing in the surrounding mountains.

Over the last few years Bill’s health declined, as he fought dementia and cancer. These diseases took some of his key traits away — his skilled storytelling and his fierce independence. In 2017, Bill moved back to Chicago and was able to be near his children and grandchildren (Simmone, Dayjao, Joseph,and Josh). He passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family, who will be forever grateful for the additional time they had with him in Chicago. Bill is survived by his wife, children, grandchildren and brothers-in-law James Simpson and Ronald Sobczak (Pat), cousins, nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by sister Arlene; and his son, Michael.


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