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Joseph "Joe" Olson

February 20, 1959 May 31, 2019
Joseph "Joe" Olson
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Obituary for Joseph "Joe" Olson

Joseph A. “Joe” Olson, 60, of Bloomington, Ill. and Peoria, passed away Friday, May 31, 2019 in Bloomington. Joe was born February, 20, 1959 in Escanaba, Mich., to Marcus “Mark” M. and Elaine (Stolpe) Olson. His mother preceded him in death.

Surviving are: Joe’s father, Mark; his son, Joseph A. “Joey” (Corinne) Olson, Jr.; his beloved grandson, Preston J. Olson, and Joe’s former wife, Cindy (Oldham) Olson, all of Peoria. Joe’s surviving siblings include: Michael P. (Laurie) Olson of Peoria; Susan I. (Jerry) Brady of Edwards; Jane A. (Mark) Golowski of Peoria and Patti L. (Bob) Keegan of Dunlap. Several nieces and nephews, and great nieces and great nephews also survive. Joe’s brother, Richard “Ric” M. (Debbie Dew) Olson, of Peoria died on Saturday, June 1, one day after Joe’s death.

Joe was a 1977 graduate of Bergan High School, where he played football and baseball, and in the tradition of his family’s bloodline, excelled at hockey. He went on to attend Michigan State University, and following college, he played for the Peoria Blades hockey team for four years.

For over 32 years, Joe played an integral role in the success of hockey in Central Illinois. In 1987, he began his career with the Peoria Park District as a volunteer youth hockey instructor and advanced to serve many roles, including as a board member and the district’s Director of Hockey. His dedication to youth hockey instruction in Peoria earned him the AHAI Coaching Achievement Award for the 1993-94 season.

In 2006, Joe was recruited to start an amateur hockey program in Bloomington, which had not had an ice rink in 22 years. The results of his hard work since then at the Pepsi Ice Rink have led local media to refer to Joe as the “father of hockey” in Bloomington. In his position as Assistant Rink Manager and Director of Hockey, Joe helped to grow the number of youth hockey players in Bloomington from under 100 originally to more than 350 today. Thanks in large part to Joe’s passion for the game, the rink also now has 16 adult teams, a travel hockey organization, a girls’ hockey program and a sled hockey team for players with disabilities.

Joe was a member of the American Hockey Association of Illinois, USA Hockey, Peoria Youth Hockey Association and Bloomington Youth Hockey Association. In 2013, he was inducted into the Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame.

The Olson family has been deeply touched by the appreciation for Joe’s work expressed by many hockey families in Bloomington and Peoria on social media: “Coach Joe did it all. He coached. He administered. He mentored.” More than anything, their comments mention Joe’s compassion for the kids, exemplified by his uncanny ability to know every kid, and remember each and every single one of their names, and those of their parents. That’s a lot of names through the years.

The family would like to thank the physicians and nurses at BroMenn Medical Center for their compassionate and highly skilled care for Joe in the Emergency Room, and the Intensive Care and Hospice Units. Always selfless, Joe donated his tissues through the Gift of Hope to help make the lives of others better.

Joe’s life will be celebrated along with his brother Ric’s life, beginning with a visitation on Thursday, June 6, 2019 from 4 to 8 p.m. at St. Thomas Catholic Church in Peoria Heights. Monsignor Jason Gray, Father Paul Stark and Father Thomas Taylor will officiate the funeral mass on Friday, June 7, at 10:30 a.m., with additional visitation at 9:30 a.m. prior to mass at the church. Christian burial will follow at Resurrection Mausoleum and Cemetery in Peoria.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Bloomington Youth Hockey or Peoria Youth Hockey. Memorials will benefit Learn to Play programs and scholarships.

Friends may sign the online guestbook or send condolences to www.wrightandsalmon.com

Previous Events

Visitation

Thursday

6

Jun

4:00 PM 6/6/2019 4:00:00 PM - 8:00 PM 6/6/2019 8:00:00 PM
St. Thomas Catholic Church

904 E Lake Ave
Peoria Heights, IL 61616

St. Thomas Catholic Church
904 E Lake Ave Peoria Heights 61616 IL
United States

Visitation

Friday

7

Jun

9:30 AM 6/7/2019 9:30:00 AM - 10:30 AM 6/7/2019 10:30:00 AM
St. Thomas Catholic Church

904 E Lake Ave
Peoria Heights, IL 61616

St. Thomas Catholic Church
904 E Lake Ave Peoria Heights 61616 IL
United States

Funeral Mass

Friday

7

Jun

10:30 AM 6/7/2019 10:30:00 AM
St. Thomas Catholic Church

904 E Lake Ave
Peoria Heights, IL 61616

St. Thomas Catholic Church
904 E Lake Ave Peoria Heights 61616 IL
United States

Cemetery Details

Location

Resurrection Cemetery & Mausoleum Final Resting Place

7519 N Allen Rd
Peoria, IL 61614

7519 N Allen Rd Peoria 61614 IL
United States
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