Donnelly “Don” Oliva

–  04/04/2018


Donnelly M. “Don” Oliva 91 of Villa Park, IL, formerly of Jackson, MI, Huron, SD and Tyndall SD. Beloved husband of the late Phyllis (Kuhl); they would have celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary this coming June. Loving father of Mike (Deb), Tom (Pam), David, Anne Oliva, Peggy (the late Scott) Noah and Jim Oliva. Cherished grandfather of Chris, Jeff, Sarah and Teresa. Fond brother of Ralph (Marilyn), Dean (Marlene), Marilyn (the late Lowell) Simons, Tom (the late Mary Ann), the late Corrine (Cal) Meierbachtol. Uncle and great uncle of many.
Visitation Saturday April 14, 2018 9:00 a.m. until Mass time 10:00 a.m. at St. Alexander Church 300 S. Cornell, Villa Park, IL. Interment Mt. Emblem Cemetery, Elmhurst, IL.
Don was the oldest of six, born October 12, 1926 in Tyndall SD to Mike and Lillian (Sykora) Oliva. After graduating from Huron (SD) High School, he served three years in the US Army during WWII. He earned his degree in electrical engineering from South Dakota School of Mines in 1951, and became a registered professional engineer in 1957. He accepted his first job as an engineer with Commonwealth Associates in Jackson MI, where he worked for 16 years. He then joined Fargo Engineering Company of Jackson, MI as Manager, Electrical Engineering. After Fargo Engineering merged into Brown and Root, Inc, he moved to Villa Park, IL in 1975, and worked as Manager, Electrical Engineering of its Chicago division in Oak Brook, IL for a combined nineteen years. He worked another seven years as an engineer in the petroleum refinery industry in the Chicago area, retiring at age 67 in 1993. Throughout his retirement, he enjoyed doing projects at home without having deadlines and time limits, going to garage sales, and especially taking care of his grand kids. Don was a model husband, father, and friend. His love for family, friends and neighbors was appreciated beyond measure. As Maya Angelou said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Don made everyone that was close to him feel valued, respected, and loved; especially those blessed enough to receive his hugs.



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