War veteran, DeKalb police officer, dies

July 9, 2018 GMT

DeKALB – Whether it was with the U.S. military or within various roles in the city of DeKalb, Donald P. Schoo, who passed away on Saturday at the age of 93, served with distinction for most of his adult life.

Schoo served in a number of military campaigns in World War II, including the D-Day invasion at Omaha Beach in Normandy and the Battle of the Bulge, and became known for sharing stories of his service with local students.

For his service, Schoo earned a Combat Medal and two Bronze Stars from the United States and was also was named a Knight of the Legion of Honor by then-president of France, Jacques Chirac, in 2004.

Rather than shy away from his military service, Schoo donated his time to history classes at Kishwaukee College, where he would share his experiences. In doing so, Schoo received an honorary degree from the college in 2011.

As a tribute to his 20 years of service to the DeKalb Police Department from 1947 to 1967, the department’s Facebook page was updated with some of Schoo’s memoirs recalling his time as an officer.

Schoo reflected on the “good old days” of law enforcement where city arrests went before the Justice of the Peace – which he called quick justice – and when the department only had one squad car that had to be pushed to start.

“If it didn’t start, [officers] would take a taxi to the call,” School remarked. “One squad car would respond to all the calls but if there were two calls, we would drop one officer off at one call and the other officer would respond to the other call.”

Schoo also held a number of other different roles in the community, including an employee of DeKalb’s street department, manager of the DeKalb Taylor Municipal Airport and a maintenance employee for Northern Illinois University.

A funeral Mass will be held at 10:30 a.m. Friday at St. Mary Catholic Church, 321 Pine St. Burial will follow at St. Mary Catholic Cemetery in DeKalb, with full military honors by DeKalb American Legion Post 66 and Sycamore VFW Post 5768.

Visitation will be from 1-7 p.m. Thursday, at Anderson Funeral Home, 2011 S. Fourth St., with a Wake Service beginning at 7 p.m.

Memorials can be made to the Donald P. Schoo Memorial Fund, sent to the Schoo Family in care of Anderson Funeral Home, P.O. Box 605, 2011 South Fourth Street, DeKalb, IL 60115. For information, visit www.AndersonFuneralHomeLtd.com or call 815-756-1022.