Funeral Services and a Mass of Christian Burial for Dr. Leo T. Kilfoy, 89, a resident of Davenport will be 11:00 AM Tuesday, September 4, 2018 at Our Lady of Victory Catholic Church, 4105 N. Division Street, Davenport. Burial will be in Mt. Calvary Cemetery, Davenport. The family will greet friends Monday, September 3, 2018, from 1:00 until 3:00 PM at the Halligan McCabe DeVries Funeral Home, 614 Main Street, downtown Davenport. There will be a prayer service at 1:00 PM that all are invited to join. There will be additional visitation Tuesday in the Gathering Space at the church from 9:30 AM until service time.
Dr. Kilfoy died Wednesday, August 29, 2018 at the Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House, Bettendorf, following a brief illness.
Leo Timothy Kilfoy was born June 11, 1929, in Chicago, Illinois, a son of Leo Timothy and Kathryn (Shovlain) Kilfoy. Leo was proud of his Irish roots and that he was raised just north of Wrigley Field.
He graduated from St. George High School, Evanston, Illinois, where he played basketball and was an All-State football player. He graduated from St. Ambrose College (1947-1951) with a BA degree, majoring in Physical Education, with a minor in History, University of Illinois, M.A. in Physical Education, 1954, and Columbia Pacific University, Doctorate in Athletic Administration, 1983.
He was united in marriage to Shirley Mae King, August 11, 1957, at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Rock Island, Illinois. They recently celebrated 61 years of marriage.
Leo or “Coach” as he was affectionately known, began his teaching and coaching career in Springfield, Illinois, accepting an offer at Cathedral High School. He accepted his second, and last teaching position in 1954, joining the staff of St. Ambrose College (1954-2007). He was Chairman of the Physical Education Department 23 years, and coached 31 years, including football, basketball, track, and tennis. Leo was Director of Intramural and Recreational Sports, and was a fulltime teacher 48 years, teaching both lecture and activity courses in Physical Education. In 1977 Leo and fellow Ambrose coach and teacher, Bob Duax, were responsible for restoring football as an intercollegiate sport at St. Ambrose.
Coach Kilfoy was bestowed many awards and received numerous sports-related honors, including induction to the St. Ambrose Athletic Hall of Fame, The Quad City Times Athletic Hall of Fame, The Chicago Catholic League Hall of Fame, and in 2014 St. Ambrose honored his service to the institution by naming the basketball court at Lee Lohman Arena in his honor. He was one of the first recipients of the Bishop McMullin Award, presented to individuals who embody the St. Ambrose mission of enriching the lives of others.
Additionally, he was a member of Our Lady of Victory Parish, Knights of Columbus, and was active in the St. Patrick Society Quad-Cities, serving as the 1996 Grand Marshall in the parade. He also participated in the Senior Olympics in racquetball, making state champion ten years, and qualifying and attending the National Senior Olympic Games for ten years.
Memorials may be made in his name to the Our Lady of Victory Parish Foundation or to St. Ambrose University for a scholarship to be awarded in Leo Kilfoy’s name.
Those left to honor his memory include his beloved wife, Shirley, sons, Tim (Jennifer) Kilfoy and Pat (Kathie) Kilfoy, all of Davenport; a daughter, Laurie Kilfoy, Woodbury, Minnesota, grandchildren, Melissa, Allison, Timmy, Mary Kate, Carter, Alex, Bety and Rocio, six great grandchildren, sisters Mary Kathryn “Katie” Kilfoy, Des Plaines, Illinois and Martina Daker, Lake Forest, Illinois, and nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, a son, Kevin Lee Kilfoy, a sister, Madeline Sampson, and brothers, Francis “Mike” Kilfoy and Edward Kilfoy. May they rest in peace.
As Coach would say, “Peace and God Bless”.