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Friday, Mar 7, 2014

* From IFT President Dan Montgomery…

It is with sadness that I inform you of the passing of IFT Vice President/Cook County College Teachers Union Legislative Chairman Bill Naegele.

Information on services will be forwarded as it is received.

* Bill Naegele was one of the most infamous commenters we ever had on this blog.

“Bill,” as we knew him, delighted in firing up other commenters by supporting Rod Blagojevich through thick and thin. Man, he got into some wicked fights.

It was mostly an act. He delighted in messing with people, making them defend their arguments, putting a burr under their saddles.

Bill and I eventually became friends and I got to experience the born contrarian up close and personal. He was one of the funniest, down to earth, in your face guys I ever knew.

* Bill introduced himself to me years ago at the Old State Capitol. The Statehouse was being remodeled, so the House held session at the old place. I took a photo and posted it on the blog. He wanted to maintain his anonymity, so we used a photo of the back of his head…

* On the day Blagojevich was arrested, Bill posted a comment that will live forever with people who’ve been around here awhile…


* By then, most commenters had warmed up to Bill and he became a very popular guy. We even tried to get him appointed to Barack Obama’s Senate seat. OneMan put this one together, as I recall…

* We created a Facebook page and Bill jumped all the way in. Here’s his “acceptance speech”

My friends,

On this great day for Illinois, at this moment, we now have 200 members of the Capitol Fax Bill for Senate Group. Let me just say that I am overwhelmed and humbled by your support. It is after much soul searching and after conferring with my family that I am proud to announce that should our movement be successful and Governor Blagojevich offers me the opportunity to serve you, the people of Illinois, as your Senator, I will accept the appointment.

It is time for a change in America! We have assembled a team that is unprecedented in national politics.

My fellow Americans now is the time to show the bureaucrats in Washington D.C. how government should be run for the people not for the special interests. Except for myself and my supporters, lobbyists will have no place in the Capitol Fax Bill Senate office. Our job is not done. Call or write Rod Blagojevich today and demand change we can believe in.

Demand Bill as your Senator! God Bless you and God bless America!

* When Blagojevich appointed Roland Burris instead, Bill issued this statement…

My fellow Illinoisians,

Today is a sad day for our state. Despite our best efforts to clean up politics in this state by running a campaign clean and free of the pay to play syndrome that has plagued Illinois for decades,it now seems that we were doomed from the start.

I can state here unequivocally that I was never contacted by COS John Harris to put in my bid for appointment to the US Senate. It could be because Harris knows that I have no money, power, or influence or it could be that he knows that I would never engage in any pay to play schemes,especially with someone as totally stupid and untrustworthy as he or his boss.

Be that as it may, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of my supporters especially Henry and Miller who made our great crusade possible. I intend to take a few weeks off, spend some time with my family, and contemplate the future.

Rest assured, my fellow Americans, You have not heard the last from CapitolFax Bill! With your support, we shall prevail!

God, I loved that guy.

* Bill’s comments tapered off over the past several months. It turns out, he was very ill.

For the first time ever on this website, here’s a photo of our beloved friend…

Rest in peace, pal.

This place is just never gonna be the same without that guy.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - RMW Stanford - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:07 pm:

    RIP Bill, I remember well having a number of fights with him on here, particularly over the GRT. The board will not be the same with out him

  2. - wordslinger - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:08 pm:

    Geez, had no idea.

    You knew a lot of it was a gag with Bill, but man, if you were ever in a jackpot, you’d want that guy on your side.

    We used to fight like crazy, but he offered me Cubs tickets more than once.

    A life in full, I’m sure.

  3. - Raising Kane - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:09 pm:

    Godspeed Bill

  4. - IbendahlLuvsJBT - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:09 pm:

    What a nice tribute, Rich. RIP, Bill.

  5. - Formerly Known As... - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:11 pm:

    He sounds like an incredible person. May he find peace.

  6. - Ann - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:11 pm:

    A wonderful tribute. Thank you.

  7. - Team Sleep - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:12 pm:

    I also knew there had to be a front go along with that back! :)

  8. - Boone's is Back - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:12 pm:

    RIP Bill- your intelligence, wit, and sense of humor will be sorely missed. Sad day for the Cap Fax community.

  9. - John A Logan - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:14 pm:

    What a wonderful life and a wonderful contributor to capitol fax. I will never forget that comment the morning Blago got arrested. I have laughed about it for years now. I will greatly miss him on the blog, he and I got into a few spats, but I always enjoyed them. He made things more lively around here, and for that I tip my hat.

  10. - VanillaMan - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:15 pm:

    My heart is so broken.

    I hope Rich could find some time in his busy day to bring us more Bill highlights.

    I knew one day we would see one of our beloved commenters pass, because so many of them are so unbelievably freaking old - but - I cannot imagine this day would come today.

    I will never forget you.

  11. - Siriusly - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:16 pm:

    You really do an outstanding job of remembering people on the blog Rich. I knew Bill but didn’t know that Bill was Bill. He will be missed.

    I strongly suggest that you consider doing an “in memoriam” post at the end of each calendar year - like the Oscars.

  12. - He Makes Ryan Look Like a Saint - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:20 pm:

    RIP Bill. You had me laughing out loud at times, once I figured out that his support from Blago was more an act. Rich, I recall the blog beating up on him pretty bad once the Impeachment process was completed….He never wavered. I am sorry I never got to meet him.

  13. - Wensicia - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:20 pm:

    Bill was the rainbow in the Blagojevich super storm.


  14. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:20 pm:

    I am sad to hear of the passing of Bill.

    I send my deepest sympathy to his family and friends, and as someone who was entertained, and learned, from Bill here, I am very grateful Bill shared himself, and that wit and humor.

    My sincere condolences.

  15. - OneMan - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:22 pm:

    I still think he would have made a great senator…

    He always made you think…

  16. - 47th Ward - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:25 pm:

    This makes me so profoundly sad. I never met him but always felt like I knew him from interacting with him here. He was a very funny, very smart and completely enjoyable commenter. He will be sorely missed.

    Rest in peace Bill. Thanks for everything you gave us.

  17. - OneMan - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:27 pm:

    Even Did a couple of videos…

    The Facebook Group is still around as well

  18. - Cassandra - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:27 pm:

    My sympathies to the family. A great commenter and, clearly, a great guy.

  19. - Arthur Andersen - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:28 pm:

    Godspeed, Bill. We’ll miss you.

    I remember, too, when I found out that Bill was “Bill.” Made some of our past spats here even funnier.

  20. - vise77 - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:29 pm:

    I’m mainly an observer, but I, too, loved that guy. Thanks for the story, Rich. Godspeed, Bill. My sympathies to his family and friends. Seems like he was a great guy.

  21. - Left Leaner - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:31 pm:

    RIP Bill. Thanks for leaving the rest of us with so many smiles and belly laughs.

  22. - fiercely independent - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:33 pm:

    Thanks for everything, Bill.

  23. - zatoichi - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:34 pm:

    Just loved Bill’s determination for his ‘point of view’ even if in reality he was LHAO behind the screen. Seems like a really smart guy who enjoyed the absurdity of life no matter what he was doing. RIP, man. Nice run.

  24. - Jake From Elwood - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:41 pm:

    Bill was a Top-5 all-time contributor to this CapFax community. He has to be one of the earliest commenters on here. Clearly a smart guy who loved to push people’s buttons.

    Rich, your words were appropriate and an excellent tribute to a man you clearly appreciated. He should be given the Golden Horseshoe lifetime achievement award in my opinion. God bless.

  25. - Nearly Normal - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:45 pm:

    Condolences to Bill’s family on their loss. We will miss him here as well.

  26. - David E. Miller - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:46 pm:

    I am really sadden by the news. Anyone who knew him knows that Bill was a GREAT guy. I always enjoyed our laughs and I can smile now knowing he is smiling upon us. RIP

  27. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:47 pm:

    I thank you Rich for finally introducing me to “Bill,” simultaneously the antagonist and ally of not just me but reform-minded Democrats across Illinois.

    Bill came to praise Blago, not to bury him, and did it with sly style.

  28. - HoosierDaddy - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:49 pm:

    Bill will definitely be missed. RIP, man.

  29. - Nieva - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:52 pm:

    Nice memories Rich. If this was Facebook I would have hit like.

  30. - Obamas Puppy - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:52 pm:

    Sad day, a sane man in an insane world. Felt I knew him as soon as I met him and consider myself a better person for having known him. I was able to work with Bill for several years and still recall many of the conversations we had during all of the elections and sessions over the years. Save me a seat at the bar buddy, Ill see you there. RIP my friend.

  31. - ChinaTown - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:59 pm:

    Newish to the blog, so never had the pleasure of seeing him in action…but that was a wonderful, very touching tribute, Rich.

  32. - Soccermom - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 1:59 pm:

    Ah — so sorry to hear this. A good, smart, funny guy. What a loss.

  33. - Vote Quimby! - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:04 pm:

    RIP Bill. You brought a lot of life to this blog, and I am certain your life was full of energy as well.

  34. - Ken_in_Aurora - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:07 pm:

    Rest in peace, Bill - both you and your sense of humor are deeply missed.

  35. - Rayne of Terror - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:07 pm:

    May his memory be a blessing.

  36. - Superanon - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:12 pm:

    Great tribute, great commentator, new golden horseshoe, best commentator lifetime achievement.
    Bill will be missed by all here and should be by a gray haired guy sitting in a concrete room in Colorado.

  37. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:12 pm:

    I am sorry to hear of Bill’s passing, but I suppose I have mixed emotions.

    As Rich reminded us, the unions representing Illinois teachers (both groups actually the IFT, which the statewide affiliate of Bill’s organization, and the IEA) went all in with Rod Blagojevich twice in gubernatorial elections.

    I did not know Bill personally, but always read his additions to union newsletters. There was a good deal of unhappiness when Perry Buckley succeeded Norm Swenson as the President of CCCTU and effectively sold some of his members down the river at the City Colleges of Chicago while securing a terrific retirement deal for himself (Exhibit “A” in why Illinois has such pension problems due to insider dealings). The CCCTU faculty in Chicago was given less than forty-eight hours to approve a new contract (their current contract was not even due to expire at the time) because Mayor Rahm Emanuel wanted to have a propaganda victory on the education front to use against Karen Lewis and the Chicago Teachers’ Union. It was a bad deal and the Chicago Public Schools were still closed when the teachers went on strike.

    To be accurate, it must be added that the CCCTU has suburban members as well at different college districts in Cook County other than the City Colleges of Chicago. Needless to say, there is some internal fighting with the union now.

    R.I.P. Bill. You will be missed. We need a few more good guys now.

  38. - dupage dan - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:15 pm:

    I got zinged by Bill on a couple of occasions. A determined man who held his ground. Blessings to his family.

  39. - ZC - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:15 pm:

    Whatever you thought of his posts or his politics, he was one of those commentators you checked the feeds for, just to see if he’d chimed in. He was a tone setter for cap fax blog period and one of its early giants: I think he won the first commentator horse shoe. Colorful and controversial. If he were a Survivor player, he’d be Richard Hatch.

  40. - Downstate - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:24 pm:

    Bill would have made an incredible actor (at least through the prism of his posts).
    He always stayed in character, even when seemingly impossible.

    Sorry to hear of his passing.

  41. - He Makes Ryan Look Like a Saint - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:28 pm:

    Rich, Name the Golden Horseshoe for the best Blogger after Bill!

  42. - Rich Miller - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:33 pm:

    We’ll do something to permanently honor Bill’s memory. I’m just not sure what right now. Let’s try to use this post to remember the man.

  43. - Soccermom - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:41 pm:

    There is no blessing like a loyal friend. Someone once described a great colleague as “one to go down the river with”. That was Bill.

  44. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 2:48 pm:

    RIP, Bill. I felt as if you were one of the few buddies I had on this blog. I will miss you.

  45. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 3:00 pm:

    I was not reading this blog when Bill was commenting, but I did work with him some on the IFT’s higher education constituency and admired him greatly.

  46. - G'Kar - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 3:01 pm:

    Sorry, 3 pm came from me.

  47. - Walker - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 3:26 pm:

    The Bill “best opposing commenter” Award?

  48. - Just The Way It Is One - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 3:36 pm:

    B-is for “…Barrel of Laughs” with so many of his often light-hearted and/or satirical Comments…! (I always had a feeling he was a dapper, festy-like, yet kind Gentleman Older than myself)…!

    I-is for “Intelligent.” The Man had clearly been around the block, and when he wanted to say or add something of Import to the conversation, you could see he’d certainly learned a thing or 2 over the years…!

    L-is for “loquacious.” Seems for as long as I can remember since I started commenting here many years ago, Bill almost ALways had something to opine about, and often with wit and wisdom, as to the array of subjects bantered about here, and, again, often in a good-humored way as well…!

    L-is for, the last L, for “Lovable” Old Bill. Damn, gettin’ emotional/choked up a bit now, just thinkin’ now how we won’t ever see the simple, yet strong name “Bill,” pop up ever again, just to see what HIS take on or chuckle about something might be. May the Good Lord smile permanently on you now, and keep you busy and chucklin’ from here on out for GOOD now, Bill…although we’ll sure miss hearin’ what YOU would’ve had to say about…well, just about ANYthing we end-up chatterin’ on about down here from now on, too….

  49. - cover - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 3:43 pm:

    Nice tribute, Rich, and I’m glad to see some of the long-time commenters coming out of the woodwork as well. Bill’s tenacity will certainly be missed.

  50. - Tom B. - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 3:57 pm:

    Now he’ll be posting a witty comment or two in that great big blog post in the sky.

    RIP Bill.

  51. - Ron Burgundy - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 3:59 pm:

    Rest in Peace, Bill. You drove me nuts sometimes, but were never boring.

  52. - Long-Time Lurker - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 4:01 pm:

    RIP Bill. Our opinions rarely agreed, but I always enjoyed reading his comments. You will be missed.

  53. - Sunshine - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 4:24 pm:

    What a delight it was to read his posts. He sure riled a lot of folks and it was great. He will be sorely missed! God bless his soul and give peace to his family. What a guy. We are all stronger for having know him!

  54. - Toby Trimmer - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 4:25 pm:

    “We send it, you spend it.”
    - Bill

    A great guy who’s gonna be missed terribly. Your tributes are touching.

  55. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 4:30 pm:

    Bill looked like Jeremy Irons. Pope Borgia. I think he’s like that…

  56. - Secret Square - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 4:39 pm:

    A day without Capitol Fax Bill is like a day without sunshine. RIP Bill and condolences to his family.

  57. - Karen Lewis - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 4:40 pm:

    I am devastated by Bill’s passing. He was a stand up guy and I’m glad other people know that about him. Bill was a strong unionist, having started his career as a math teacher in CPS. He was at a union meeting in the Executive Board Room of CTU when he suffered a heart attack. We had hoped he would soon be on the mend, alas it was not to be. May his memory be for a blessing.

  58. - Norseman - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 5:02 pm:

    Saw this too late for official post, but I did want to add my condolences.

  59. - David E Miller - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 5:18 pm:

    I remember when Bill bragged to me they were the first union to endorse Barack Obama.

  60. - OneMan - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 5:29 pm:

    Always a reminder that you could be contrarian and intelligent all at the same time.

  61. - Bobo - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 5:45 pm:

    He could say more with less words than any other commentor on the blog. A very talented man

  62. - east central - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 8:34 pm:

    Often facetious with tremendous wit. Surreptitiously thoughtful comments on serious topics. Invariably succinct beyond any other poster. Greatly missed. Deepest sympathies.

  63. - Excessively Rabid - Friday, Mar 7, 14 @ 8:59 pm:

    ==Bill Naegele was one of the most infamous commenters we ever had on this blog. ==

    In-famous means you’re more than famous….

    The Bill Naegele Devil’s Advocate Award. Although I would rename the other yearly awards the Oscars, and give the winners a statue of the dog.

  64. - Hon. John Fritchey - Saturday, Mar 8, 14 @ 10:47 am:

    Bill helped me on more than one of my races and I would pop in their office now and then to say hi and shoot the breeze. In a business with a lot of less than likable people, he was a welcome exception. Requiem de pace.

  65. - Bill's Daughter - Sunday, Mar 9, 14 @ 6:07 am:

    I would like to thank you all for the happiness this blog brought to Bill. He truly enjoyed all the banter and hell raising he experienced here with each of you. Reading the kind words and memories y’all have shared since his passing have been a great source of comfort for us. I’ll leave you with one more smile thanks to Bill- his final wishes were that we take his ashes and scatter them off of the pier in the town in Florida where he loved to vacation. The town offers the option of engraving a message in a plank of the pier and Bill asked us to make one in his honor that says, “I never caught a fish here…and now I never will.”

  66. - facts are stubborn things - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 8:47 am:

    Heaven may never be the same. :)

    RIP and my respects to his family.

  67. - Pot calling kettle - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 8:47 am:

    As a member of the IFT and a CC faculty member, I always appreciated the work Bill did for us in Springfield, even more so now that I know he was also “Bill.”

  68. - So-Called "Austin Mayor" - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 9:21 am:

    God speed, Bill.

    – SCAM

  69. - ArchPundit - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 12:08 pm:

    This is awful news–I’ve been travelling to a new job and even more out of touch than normal. Bill was funny and sharp. Even when I’d roll my eyes at his defense of Blagojevich, I’d usually get a good laugh out of his posts.

  70. - ZC - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 12:25 pm:

    I was thinking about “Bill’s Best Posts” and I kept coming back to this one from April 2009, when he’s thinking about the upcoming 2010 cycle. It showed the side of Bill I really liked, the populist Democrat (as well as the humor). He also has some weird kind of crystal ball seeing into what will happen in 2010:

    >> Shouldn’t this guy Hoffman at least walk a precinct once before running for the US Senate? I had the same problem with Alexi. We grunts like candidates who work their way up, not skip over all of us and buy their way in at the top. Run for state rep or township trustee or something. Ring some doorbells. Win a few elections first before going all in for the big one. Fritchey should be a prohibitive favorite for commissioner especially with the goo goos going all ga ga over him but with those roving bands of brie eaters up there you can never tell. Why he would want to be on the County Board is beyond me but to each his own. I hope he is looking forward to those 9 hour finance committee meetings. He should have a lot of time to twitter and blog after he wins. It should be a fun race for his successor in the House. I’m still holding out hope that Rich Miller’s nemeses in the right wing will beat out Dillard. Otherwise Quinn/Hynes might be toast.

    Comment by Bill Monday, Aug 31, 09

  71. - Arthur Andersen - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 4:56 pm:

    Bill is laughing at this. I took down the background on my Tweeter over the weekend to honor him and now I can’t find the picture I previously used. In his words, “Whoops.”

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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* Aurora crash closes Lake Street
* West Chicago teen charged with fatally shooting his cousin
* Glenbard West downs Libertyville for 7A title

* House lawmakers overcome hurdle on key tra...
* Rodney Davis talks funding with Bloomingto...
* The agency that fought Illiana gets a new ...
* Rep. Dold takes educational cruise down Ch...
* Lawmakers decry high turnover rate of VA h...
* CBD Oil, and politics
* Simon considering state Senate bid
* Killer Congressman Tom MacArthur trying to...
* Shutdown? State may not notice
* Rep. Bob Dold

* Durbin Backs Duckworth - Alton Daily News...
* Durbin Calls on Gov. Rauner to Meet With S......
* Durbin Statement on Pfizer-Allergan Invers......

* Opinion: Sen. Kirk must stand with crimina......

* Chinese Take Out
* "Mexican Food, Opening Soon"
* Tony at the Red Line Tap.
* The cover-up of the killing of Laquan McDonald.
* Keeping retirement weird. Justice is the public face of love.
* RLC Roundup: Drivers Aim Lawsuit At Tinley Park Red Light Cameras
* Dueling pair of children being used to fight for attention of Chicago, world
* No Positive Loitering Tonight
* Fairness.
* It brings out the rats.

* Emergency Management Officials, National Weather Service Encourage Winter Preparedness - November is Winter Weather Preparedness Month in Illinois
* Keep Your Family Safe This Winter - November through February are leading months for carbon monoxide related incidents
* Governor Takes Bill Action
* Illinois Department of Labor Director Hugo Chaviano Awards Governor’s Award for Contributions in Health and Safety to the Illinois Refining Division of Marathon Petroleum Company LP
* State Regulator Elected Treasurer of Interstate Medical Licensure Compact

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