Beloved alumnus Chet Lis ’58 passed away Saturday, October 12, 2019. Chet was an incredible leader for all of our alumni relations, having been president of the Holy Trinity Alumni Association for more than twenty years. In addition, Chet joined the Advisory Council in 2000 and became a trustee in 2002, serving until the time of his passing. His energy, enthusiasm, and dedication to the Brothers of Holy Cross, Holy Trinity’s mission and students, are legendary.
Chet graduated from Holy Trinity in 1958. He was Class President for all four years. As a member of the football team for four years, he played quarterback and running back on offense and defensive back on defense. He was awarded a major letter in his junior and senior years and received both the Most Improved Football Player Award (junior year) and Most Valuable Player Award (senior year). He was Co-Captain in his senior year and was honored with an MVP trophy from Dan Rostenkowski’s Youth Council. He also was a member of the Junior Varsity Basketball team and received a major letter in his senior year. In addition, he was on the tennis team in his senior year, a major letter winner, and the Sports Editor of the school newspaper. Chet also earned a Scholastic Monogram in all four years.
After HTHS, Chet attended Illinois Institute of Technology on scholastic scholarships. He was on the Dean’s List for all four years and was inducted into Tau Beta Pi (National Engineering Honor Society) and graduated with a BS in Mechanical Engineering. While working for AT&T Teletype, he attended Northwestern University and graduated with an MBA. Chet spent his career with AT&T Teletype / AT&T Computer Systems, AT&T Switching Systems / Lucent Technologies in various positions of Engineering Management. After 39 years with AT&T / Lucent Technologies, Chet moved on to Baxter Healthcare Internationa,l where he currently worked in Engineering Management until 2007. After Baxter, Chet consulted for Validant Consulting and Medela Company, retiring in 2011.
Chet became involved with the HTHS Alumni Association in 1983. He chaired various committees including the Athletic Hall of Fame and Golf Committee. In 1997, Brother Philip Smith C.S.C. asked Chet to create the Holy Trinity Athletic Hall of Fame and become its chairperson.
In 2014, Chet was awarded HT’s Henry Brandt Distinguished Alumnus Award. He was inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame in 2008 then honored again in 2018 as part of the Jr. Basketball Team.
In addition, Chet was very active in his Vernon Hills community. As a member of the Board of Directors, he served as an officer of the Gregg’s Landing Homeowners Association and an assistant coach Little League Football.
Chet and his high school sweetheart Arlene have three daughters, Karen (husband Jeff), Kathy (husband Mark) and Juliane (husband Scott) and ten grandchildren, Matthew, Kevin, Tyler, Ryan, Brett, Alissa, Jack, Brendan, Hailey, and Andrew.
Classmate and friend Greg Lopatka ’58 shared a moving tribute to Chet, with many photos from their 65 years of friendship, on Greg’s website. Click to read.