It is with immense sorrow that the Fisk family announces the passing of our loving, unimaginably generous, driven, and compassionate husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend. John William Fisk, 67, passed away peacefully on April 9, 2023, surrounded by his loved ones.
John was born in Ottumwa, Iowa on July 23, 1955, to Elizabeth Ross and Gary Fisk. John once stated, “I was born in Iowa, raised in Alaska, and came to life in Illinois.” After John graduated from Lewistown Community High School, he went on to study law at Western Illinois University. After graduating from college, John furthered his legal education at Chicago Kent Law School, earning a juris doctorate degree in 1981. Education was a notable pillar in his life and he inspired everyone he knew to never stop learning.
On July 25, 1987, John married Kim Streight and together they experienced true love. The greatest joy of their thirty-five years of marriage was raising their five children. John frequently expressed that marrying Kim was the best decision he ever made.
John’s greatest professional accomplishment was the establishment of Fisk & Monteleone Ltd. in Rockford, Illinois where he partnered with David Monteleone. David was much more than a business partner. He was a beloved friend and confidant. John’s work at the firm was truly a labor of love. Licensed for forty-two years, he never retired and worked tirelessly on numerous cases with significant successes.
John had a myriad of achievements. John was highly regarded in the legal community. He was recognized by the legal profession's most prestigious peer-review rating organization for his outstanding legal ability and ethical standards. In testament to John’s legal ability, in a case known as Studt v. Sherman Health Systems, he championed a novel basis for patients to be compensated for injuries caused by a hospital’s neglect. The Illinois Supreme Court adopted John's arguments, thereby causing a significant shift in Illinois' tort system in favor of the injured patient. John also enjoyed lecturing on medico-legal matters to various academic institutions and professional organizations. He was recognized as a Top 100 Trial Lawyer by The National Trial Lawyers Association, and he received the Top 10 Attorney Award by the National Academy of Personal Injury Attorneys. The Knights of Columbus gave John its Shining Armor Award.
John was a radiant man in every sense of the word. His smile, laugh, and energy were contagious. John had the loudest, strongest, most distinct voice in every room that he entered. Family members, friends, people in the courtroom, clung to his every word. He was exceptionally persuasive in speech and written word. He was a super fan of the Chicago White Sox and his fondest memories include taking his children and grandchildren to Guaranteed Rate Field to see the team play front and center. John was a devout Catholic and was a parishioner at St. James Church where he led the Knights of Columbus as Grand Knight for a time. Oysters Rockefeller, steak and lobster, and
Eggs Benedict were his delicacies of choice, but he took great delight in trying new eateries with his family regularly where laughs, hugs, and conversations were had.
John’s favorite and most-beloved historical figure was Abraham Lincoln. He lived his life in accordance with Lincoln's values and morals. “It’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” -Abraham Lincoln. John worked diligently and studied literature in his private Lincoln library located on Lincoln Avenue in the Land of Lincoln. His admiration for Lincoln only grew throughout the years.
John emphasized the great significance that women have played in his life. His wife, daughters, mother, sisters, and mother-in-law held vital roles in his happiness. He found great pride and joy in his legacy of women. These women helped to mold him into the empathetic, nurturing, and warm man he was.
His daughter, Peyton, wrote very poetically, “All of the memories that hold importance include you. The memories that do not include you are because of you. You gave us life. You gave us an opportunity. You gave us everything.”
He is survived by his loving wife, Kim; children, Kirsten Fisk, Christian (Zaira) Fisk, Skyler Fisk, Peyton (Caleb) Fisk, and Eliza Fisk; grandchildren: Aviana, Alba, Lila, Thea, and Holden; Siena and Elijah Fisk; Aurora Fisk; Christian John Fisk; his mother, Elizabeth (Richard) Ross; siblings, Joe Fisk, Andrea Johnson, Kimberly Fisk, and Dawn (Stephanie) Fisk; his mother-in-law, Rita Streight; his brothers-in-law, Mark (Joanne) Streight, James (Kim) Streight and Jonas Streight; as well as beloved cousins, nieces, nephews, and dear friends.
He was predeceased by his father Gary Fisk; grandparents, William and Phebe Fisk, William and Dorothy Stoker; father-in-law, Roger Streight; and brother-in-law, Bruce Johnson.
A visitation for John will take place from 2 to 4 PM on Sunday, April 16, 2023, at Belvidere Funeral Home. A funeral mass will take place at 11 AM on Monday, April 17, 2023, at St. James Catholic Church (Belvidere, IL). Burial will directly follow the funeral service at St. James Cemetery.
Memorials can be made to the family.