Longtime suburban Chevrolet dealer dies
William R. "Bill" Stasek, 70, the longtime owner of Bill Stasek Chevrolet in Wheeling, died this week. He grew up in Villa Park and was a resident of Inverness.
Stasek served as an officer of the Chicago Automobile Trade Association and was a former chairman of the Chicago Auto Show. He died Monday, March 19, and services will be at 10:30 a.m. today, Friday, March 23, at Glueckert Funeral Home in Arlington Heights.
Bill Stasek Chevrolet began as a Chicago dealership, Tom Todd Chevrolet, in 1950. It relocated to Wheeling in 1968, and Stasek became its vice president and later president before becoming a partner with the original owner's son-in-law in 1986. The name was changed to Bill Stasek Chevrolet when Stasek finalized the purchase of the dealership in 1998.
"I got started by hanging around dealerships with my dad when I was younger. He was a service manager and later salesman," Stasek told the Daily Herald in a 2005 interview. "I used to go to work with him long before I could drive, to help out."
Stasek graduated from Willowbrook High School, then earned an industrial engineering degree from the University of Illinois in 1970.
"I worked in that field for a few years and then went back to my true calling -- automobiles," he said.
Stasek met and married his wife of 46 years, Linda, while both were working at 3M Co.
Prior to joining Tom Todd Chevrolet in 1973, Stasek worked as sales manager at Montgomery Oldsmobile in Chicago.
Stasek said the second car he ever owned, following a 1955 Ford station wagon, was a 1960 Chevrolet Impala. At the time of the interview, he owned a restored, identical version of that Chevy.
Bill and Linda have two children, and their son, Jeremy Stasek, now manages the dealership.
In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate contributions to The Cradle, 2049 Ridge Avenue, Evanston, IL 60201.