John Anthony Janis, 54, of Brookfield, died on July 18, 2018 in a senseless and tragic car crash near Flomaton, Alabama. 

Born prematurely on Jan. 26, 1964, at Loretto Hospital in Chicago, “Pee Wee” was in critical condition and almost died within his first few hours. For the last several years, he was plagued with a succession of serious illnesses, yet he persevered through every sickness with faith and fortitude, a positive outlook and irrepressible humor which were an inspiration to his family and friends.

He grew up in Cicero, and from an early age, he developed a passion for both watching and playing sports. Baseball was his clear favorite. He excelled as a first baseman and as a street hockey goaltender. 

Although a Southsider by birth, he was a lifelong, fanatic follower of the Chicago Cubs. He was a Life Scout in Cicero’s BSA Troop 302 and was inducted into the Order of the Arrow, serving for many years on the staff of Owasippe Scout Reservation. 

Being essentially a “big kid” his entire life, he was able to relate to, and empathize with, young people in a unique way which was inspirational and life-changing. 

He graduated from Fenwick High School and DePaul University with high academic honors. Of late, he applied his unique command of facts, figures, names and dates to vanquishing all challengers on Trivia Night at Brixie’s. 

Mr. Janis is survived by his children, Timmy, Trevor and Maddie. His devotion to family extended to his parents, the late Robert Gerald Janis and Marjorie Ann Saine; his brothers, Michael and Bill; his nephews and nieces Rachel, Robert, Colton and Dominique; and his innumerable uncles, aunts and cousins. 

A funeral Mass will be celebrated July 25 at 10 a.m. at St. Louise de Marillac Church in LaGrange Park, with interment at St. Casimir Cemetery. 

The family appreciates memorials to The Madeline Kathleen Janis Education Fund, C/O Jennifer Lee Lapacek, 9138 Sheridan Ave., Brookfield, 60513.

Hitzeman Funeral Home, Brookfield, handled arrangements.