Wilson “Bill” Dement Dysart
Born: June 9, 1929
Died: December 31, 2021
Wilson (Bill) Dement Dysart, 92, of Crystal Lake, passed away December 31, 2021. Bill was the second child born to Wilson William and Rosanna (Dement) Dysart in Dixon, Illinois.
After graduating from Dixon High School, he earned a Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University with honors. His first job was in the Research Lab for Cummins Engine Company in Columbus, Indiana. Then he moved to Crystal Lake, Illinois to work at the Pure Oil Laboratory. That company later merged with Union Oil of California and he moved to Tech Services at their Schaumburg location. He became a manager and did some teaching and developed tests to give technicians. The last company change came when Unocal merged with Chevron. In March of 1951, he and his high school sweetheart, Velma Plumb, were married in a wedding at the home of her parents. They celebrated 70 years of marriage in 2021.
Bill was offered early retirement from the oil company, giving him time for the many interests he had and for volunteering. His volunteer efforts benefited the Christian Science church he attended, many of his friends, habitat, where he worked for many years, the YMCA, Kiwanis, and lastly the McHenry County Historical Museum, where he did all manner of projects. He also sang at many Heritage Fairs with his barbershop quartet. His accolades due to his museum efforts include being named the Crystal Lake Chamber’s Volunteer of the Year in 1996, the 2008 Illinois Association of Museums Volunteer of the Year, and a 2014 Everyday Hero. And some might remember him as “Mr. July” in the Society’s infamous 2005 calendar. One of the nominations cited his years of wizardry in working on many projects for them, repairing things, building exhibits, renovating a log cabin, and creating a mobile exhibit out of an old school bus.
In his free time, he sailed Crystal Lake for many years, biked all over the county, cross country skied and read regularly, along with regular household repairs, renovations, and auto upkeep. He was also a lifelong singer – in the Pure Oil Glee Club, then a chorus, and for many years in a Barbershop quartet called the Clef Hangers and in the Barbershop chorus – often working on the sets for the yearly shows.
He and his wife traveled extensively – not only in the U.S. and Canada, but also worldwide, taking multiple trips every year. His wife knew that if the trip included boats or trains, he would be especially willing to go. They rented canal boats in England on 3 separate occasions, for example.
His parents and a sister, Rosemary Gardner, preceded him in death. He is survived by his loving wife, Velma Plumb; six children – Jennifer (Kenneth) Balla of Pasadena, MD, Nanette (William) Luby of Deerfield, Amanda (Raymond) Beth of Woodstock, Bart (Kat Taylor) Dysart of Dallas,TX, Heather (Mark) Monson of Madison, WI, and Allison Dysart of Oak Park; one granddaughter Bethany (Natasha Seitz) Luby; and one brother Douglas (Delores) Dysart of Dixon.
Memorial services will be held in Crystal Lake and Dixon, IL at a future date. Donations in his honor may be made to the McHenry County Historical Society, 6422 Main St., Union, IL 60180 or Pioneer Center for Human Services, 4031 West Dayton St. McHenry, IL 60050.
Published by Northwest Herald from Jan. 8 to Jan. 10, 2022.