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Township Clerk ÒBud” Gavin Dies at Age 87

Five-time elected Worth Township Clerk Thomas ÒBud” Gavin, a World War II veteran and longtime Oak Lawn resident, died July 7 at Little Company of Mary Hospital of natural causes.

Mr. Gavin was known for never losing an election in 32 years of public service.

He ran for his first elected office as Worth Township trustee at age 55, winning eight consecutive elections. After 12 years as trustee, he ran for Worth Township clerk, a position he held for the past 20 years.

Born Feb. 24, 1925 in Chicago to Tom and Dorothy (Kenny) Gavin, Bud attended St. Margaret of Scotland Elementary School and St. Rita High School, where he was on the basketball and boxing teams, and the cheerleading squad.

During World War II, he served in the Navy on the aircraft carrier USS Bennington, and was an active member of the National Bennington Reunion Committee for the past 40 years.

Following the war, he attended DePaul University, where he graduated from in 1950.

He first got involved in local precinct politics and regional campaigns more than 50 years ago, and after a 33-year career with R.R. Donnelley Co., Mr. Gavin embarked on a second career as a business development coordinator for Prospect Federal Savings Bank, where he was still employed at the time of his death.

In addition, Mr. Gavin served as chairman of the Village of Oak Lawn Fire and Police Commission and the Civil Service Commission. He was president of the statewide Township of Illinois Clerks’ Association, and an active member of the Oak Lawn, Evergreen Park, Alsip and Worth-Palos Chambers of Commerce.

Over the years, the father of six was also involved in the Hometown and Oak Lawn Baseball, both as a coach and manager. He volunteered in Boys Club of America and Big Brothers programs.

An active member of St. Catherine of Alexandria Parish, where he served as an eucharistic minister, Mr. Gavin started Our Lady of Loretto and St. Catherine of Alexandria school football teams in the 1950s.

He was also a president and member of the St. Catherine’s Holy Name Society and Men’s Golf League.

Mr. Gavin also was known to sing and dance in the annual parish variety shows.

Survivors include his wife of 63 years, Lila (nee Burke); sons, Tom, Jack and Glenn Gavin, DDS; daughters, Carol Althoff and Lynn Reilly; 14 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

His daughter, Laura Coughlin, and two grandchildren died before him.

Services and interment were held July 14 from St. Catherine of Alexandria Church to Holy Sepulchre Cemetery. Thompson & Kuenster Funeral Home handled the arrangements.

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