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In Memoriam: John F. McKee, II


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John McKee was passionate about making a difference in the community and giving back. He was actively involved in many organizations throughout his lifetime, including the Community Foundation of the Fox River Valley. John was a previous member of the Community Foundation’s Board of Directors and served for over 24 years, including chairing the board from 1984-1986. John was a life member of the foundation, and he and his wife, Gwen, are Legacy Society Members. They had two funds with the foundation: The John and Gwen McKee Advisory Fund, and the John and Gwen McKee Endowment Fund, both funds actively supporting this community. Memorial contributions in John’s name will be placed in the John & Gwen McKee Endowment Fund

From the obituary:

John F. McKee II, 87, formerly of Aurora passed away peacefully on October 28, 2023. He was born in Harvey, Illinois on March 15, 1936, the son of the late Theodore and Grace (Chetham) McKee.

John graduated from West Aurora High School in 1954 and graduated from Beloit College in 1958 -Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics. His interests were varied from golfing, hiking, biking, skiing and fitness to his extensive volunteer service, traveling and spending time with his entire family.

He was employed in the family business, McKee Door Company, which was sold in 1986. He continued with the successor, Porvene-McKee until 1994. He served as a field installer, salesman all the way to President of the company in 1968.

John made friends everywhere he went and lived a life in service to others.

John was a lifelong member of New England Congregational Church where he served as a moderator and a choir member since high school. He assisted in establishing the New England Church designated endowment fund within the Aurora Foundation as well as serving on the Stewardship, Financial Advisory, Memorial Garden and Search Committees. He was also involved in all the church capital campaigns and received the 1992 Christian Service Award.

He also served in the Kiwanis Club for 50 years since 1973, where he was on the Board of Directors from 1984-1990, President in 1989, Kiwanian of the Year in 1990, Committee Chairman of the Year in 1994 and 2002 and was the Recipient of Merit Award each year from 1978 to 2007.

John was a Board member of the Aurora Foundation (currently The Community Foundation of the Fox River Valley), serving as President in 1985 and 1986 and participated on several committees and served as Chairman of Distribution Committee. He also was a member of the Board of Trustees for Aurora University from 1975 to 2006 and was elected to Emeritus status. He also served as Chairman for Academic and Student Life committee and has served on the Executive, Trustee, Finance, Advancement, and Presidential Search Committees.

His association with the YMCA was on the Board of Directors from 1967 until 1978 and was President in 1975 and 1976. He participated on several committees and was the recipient of Cluster Group 1995 “Key Leadership Award” and on the Board of Trustees of Heritage YMCA Group from 1999 until 2007. He was also on the YWCA Board of Trustees from 1988 until 1994 and served for 3 years on the Women of Distinction Committee.

He was instrumental in fundraising for YM/YW Joint Capital Fund Drive, United Way, Aurora University, Provena Mercy Medical Center as well as Rush Copley Medical Center.

John was a Scoutmaster for Explorer Post 503 in 1961 and 1962 and received the Council’s President’s trophy for Explorer Scouting.

He received special awards in 1992 for Cosmopolitan Club Distinguished Service Award and in 2005 recipient of the Kiwanis Service to God and Fellow Man Award.

John also found time to serve on the Board of Directors from 1990-1995 for the Mental Health, Mental Retardation Services, Inc. and also served as the Treasurer.

John is survived by his three children, Scott (Dee), Sue (Sam) Erwin and Steve (Wendy); eleven grandchildren; two great grandchildren.

John was preceded in death by his wife of 55 years, Gwen H. McKee.

The family will receive friends on December 14, 2023 from 4-7 p.m. at New England Congregational Church, 406 W. Galena Blvd., Aurora, IL 60506. John’s memorial service will be held on December 15, 2023 at 11 a.m. at New England Congregational Church.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the following organizations: Kiwanis Club of Aurora, Community Foundation of the Fox River Valley, Aurora Interfaith Food Pantry, New England Congregational Church.

There’s no question in my mind that the scholarship I received opened up possibilities.

Marianne Renner

Past Scholarship Recipient & Current Leadership Coach

We chose the Community Foundation because of its reputation. It’s well known, established and we can trust them to do the job for us.

Dick Schindel

Richard and Susan Schindel Scholarship Funds

A community foundation is a donor-driven organization that helps donors custom-design funds that reflect their charitable interests. Through the years, grants from these funds have made a significant impact on our local communities.

Sharon Stredde

President Emeritus

…you can always start small, even $25 can make a difference. Remember we can’t take our money with us. Even if it’s just your gift of time. Volunteer and get involved.

Cris Anderson

Cristina & Thomas S. Anderson Endowment Fund | Tom & Cris Anderson Colonial Advisory Fund

As a first-generation college student from a low-income family, I was worried about how I was going to pay for books and supplies. This scholarship will allow me to focus more on my studies instead of worrying about how to afford college. I am working to not only create opportunities for myself but to motivate future generations. Thank you so much for helping me along this journey!

Moises J.

Claude & Alice Allen Memorial Scholarship Recipient

Thank you very much for supporting my college education for these four years. I will never be able to repay you for the opportunity that this scholarship has given to me.

Julia H.

[Renewing Scholarship Recipient] Graduate of Hinkley-Big Rock High School

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