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updated: 6/14/2013 9:13 AM

Funeral Friday for Peoria baseball icon

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  • Pete Vonachen, 85, the former owner and longtime investor of the Peoria Chiefs minor league baseball team, walks out onto Wrigley Field in Chicago for a ceremony honoring him for 25 years of service to baseball before a Chicago Cubs-St. Louis Cardinals game. Vonachen died Monday, June 10, 2013. He was 87. According to the Chiefs, Vonachen bought the team in 1983. He used his connection to Cubs broadcaster Harry Caray to help turn the Chiefs into the Chicago Cubs minor league affiliate and give the team stability.

      Pete Vonachen, 85, the former owner and longtime investor of the Peoria Chiefs minor league baseball team, walks out onto Wrigley Field in Chicago for a ceremony honoring him for 25 years of service to baseball before a Chicago Cubs-St. Louis Cardinals game. Vonachen died Monday, June 10, 2013. He was 87. According to the Chiefs, Vonachen bought the team in 1983. He used his connection to Cubs broadcaster Harry Caray to help turn the Chiefs into the Chicago Cubs minor league affiliate and give the team stability.
    Associated Press file photo, 2011

 
Associated Press

PEORIA -- Funeral services will be held for a Peoria businessman credited by many for putting the city's minor league baseball team on firm financial footing.

According to The Journal Star, the funeral Mass for former Peoria Chiefs owner Harold "Pete" Vonachen will be at 1 p.m. Friday at St. Thomas Catholic Church in Peoria.

Vonachen died Monday at age 87.

Vonachen was best known as the man who bought the team and named it the Chiefs in the 1980s.

He used his close ties to Cubs broadcaster Harry Caray to affiliate the Chiefs with the Cubs and give them stability. He served as the Chiefs' general manager for years.

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