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William Joseph Zalatoris

William Zalatoris

Posted By Hitzeman Funeral Home, Ltd. On October 19, 2012 @ 1:56 pm In Obituary | 5 Comments

American FlagWilliam Joseph Zalatoris, 89, died October 19, 2012.  He is survived by his beloved wife of 61 years, Margaret (nee Barrett); sons Richard (Catherine) of Plano, TX, Mark (Renee) of Glenview, IL, Paul (Caroline) of Clarendon Hills, IL; grandchildren William Zalatoris, Scott and Joanne Zalatoris, Ellen and Anne Zalatoris; brother Edward (Betty) Zalatoris of McHenry, IL, and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his sister, Genevieve (the late George) Cermak of Brookfield, IL.

Will was a resident of both Westmont and Antioch, IL, and was a long time former resident of La Grange Park.  A World War II veteran who served in the Army Air Corps, Will was proud to have flown military transport aircraft in the China-Burma-India theater (the “Hump”). He continued to keep up with his fellow “Hump Pilots” for many years. After the war, Will graduated from Northwestern University and decided to follow one of his true passions – flying. “Captain Zal” was a pilot for American Airlines for 30 years, retiring as a 747 Captain in 1983.  His wife and sons accompanied him on his memorable, final commercial flight from Honolulu, HI to Chicago.

In addition to flying, Will enjoyed photography, boating and spending time with his family at “the Lake” (the Chain of Lakes). Will and Marge met on Channel Lake as teenagers 74 years ago – he on a sailboat and she on a raft. The rest is history.

Arrangements by Hitzeman Funeral Home, Ltd., 9445 W. 31st Street, Brookfield, IL 60513. Information at 708-485-2000 and condolences can be shared with Will’s family at www.HitzemanFuneral.com.   Arrangements are private.   Celebration of life will be scheduled during the Summer of 2013.


Condolences for the family of “William Joseph Zalatoris”

Condolence from Mike Mangiantini & Family on October 19th, 2012 11:17 pm

To the entire Zalatoris family, please accept our condolences. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. Rest in peace Captain Zal.

Condolence from Karin Schade( Schleitwier) on October 20th, 2012 11:03 am

My thoughts and prayers go out to the whole Zalatoris family. RIP Mr. Zal, you will be missed.

Condolence from Joe and Carol Goddard on October 20th, 2012 3:01 pm

A beautiful obituary for a wonderful man. Joe and I send our love and sympathy to your family in the loss of Will. We have many great memories from the many Christmas Eve’s we shared with your family and we’ll miss his stories and humor. Love, Joe and Carol

Condolence from mary and joe caruso on October 21st, 2012 3:03 pm

Joe and I are so very sorry for your loss. Will is in our prayers. May he rest in peace amen.

Condolence from Bil and Pat Hall on October 27th, 2012 8:29 pm

Both Bill and I loved flying with Zal. He was more than a gentleman,he was a friend. We will miss him very much. Our prayers are with you Marge and the entire family.

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