“The Voice” of Joliet’s WJOL radio for 40 years has passed away on May 15 of this year. Frank O’Leary was 92 years of age. For 40-plus years, O’Leary’s voice was hear in Joliet during the mornings and afternoons and at night during the basketball season on WJOL Radio. He was famous for calling Lockport basketball games was part of basketball lore.There was even special cheer for him, “Frank O’Leary he’s our man, Frank O’Leary’s a Porter fan”
He was was inducted into the Joliet Area Sports Hall of Fame. O’Leary teamed with another WJOL alum and fellow inductee Don Ladas for the majority those years in gyms throughout Will County.
O’Leary was also inducted into the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association (IBCA) Hall of Fame in its media division.
His work in and around the Joliet community has also earned him numerous accolades topped by the Joliet City Council once naming a street after him in the then-new River Glen subdivision. O’Leary has also been recognized in Joliet’s Hall of Pride (1994), as a Past Exalted Ruler by the Joliet Elks #296 and twice by the Illinois State Medical Society for his work with the Will-Grundy County Medical Society. He also served as the president on the Salem Village Board of Governors. Growing up in both Chicago’s Kenwood and Hyde Park neighborhoods and a graduate of Hyde Park High School, O’Leary made his way to Joliet in December of 1955 after stints at both DePaul University and University of Illinois’ Navy Pier campus, where he studied to be a teacher.
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