Brodkorb, William Francis Of Aurora, known to friends and family as "Bill Brown," "Curly Bill," and "Uncle Bill" has passed away at the age of 86. He passed on June 20, 2012, at Provena Mercy Hospital in Aurora, IL. Bill was born May 3, 1926, in River Grove, IL to Michael Andrew Brodkorb and Elizabeth Marguerite (Glashine) Brodkorb. He was the eldest sibling to brother; Michael (Nick) Floyd (Brodkorb) Allen and sister Joan Marie Brodkorb. As a child Bill attended River Grove grade school and East Leyden High School. He joined the United States Navy in 1944. On November 2, 1946, he married the love of his life, Betty Ann Quasthoff. Bill and Betty had two children, Kathleen and William (Billy) Andrew. From 1942 until 1970, Bill worked for Betty's family's business, Quasthoff's Flowers in River Grove. In 1970, he and his family moved to Aurora, where he lived for over 40 years. Bill pursued his own opportunity and managed and later purchased Brown's Flowers in Aurora (where he earned the nicknames Bill Brown and Uncle Bill). Brown's Flowers was recognized as one of the top 200 Florists in the United States. The business closed on Mother's Day 2007, after over fifty years of business. Everyone who knew Bill agreed that he had a knack for story-telling. He could make you feel like you were there with him. Bill is survived by his wife of 65 years, Betty Ann (Quasthoff) Brodkorb, of Aurora, IL; sister, Joan Marie Brodkorb, of Franklin Park, IL; brother-in-law, Adolph Quasthoff and partner Saralynn of Honolulu, HI; daughter, Kathleen (Brodkorb) Thomas and husband Thomas Mitchell Thomas of Aurora, IL; son William (Billy) Andrew Brodkorb of Aurora, IL; granddaughter Allyson Elizabeth (Friese) Kelsch and husband Michael John Kelsch of Gilbertsville, PA; granddaughter Kirsten Aileen Thomas of Aurora, IL; great-grandsons, Mason Michael and Deacon William Kelsch of Gilbertsville, PA. Bill was predeceased by father, Michael Andrew Brodkorb (1965); mother, Elizabeth Marguerite (Glashine) Brodkorb (1971); father-in-law, Carl Anton Quasthoff (1996); mother-in-law, Josephine C. (Gally) Quasthoff (2000); younger brother, Michael (Nick) Floyd (Brodkorb) Allen (2011); sister-in-law, Nancy (Quasthoff) Borgmann (2010). His family is mourning his death privately. There will be no public services, but they ask that everyone remember him for the wonderful and fun loving man he was. While everyone's sympathies are much appreciated, we ask that in lieu of flowers, you make a donation in his memory to the
at www.cancer.org, or please call 1-800-227-2345. In the spirit of the Dixieland music Bill loved: "We are traveling in the footsteps, of those who've gone before. But we'll all be reunited, on a new and sunlit shore. Oh when the saints go marching in, when the saints go marching in. Oh lord I want to be in that number, when the saints go marching in."
Published in Chicago Sun-Times on June 26, 2012