Steve Wasilowski forwarded the obit, below. The old-timers will remember Clare Close. He was one of the original investors in Sky Soaring back in the early 80’s.
What most of you don’t know, or perhaps have forgotten, is that Clare sued the Club and the LLC in 1990’s because he felt his investment wasn’t providing the returns he wanted and the Club was being mis-managed and funds improperly allocated between the Club and the LLC. We literally spent tens of thousands of dollars and about 6 years defending the Club and the LLC from his frivolous lawsuit. The irony of the whole thing is that Clare was the Treasurer of the Club and LLC (and LP, before it) at the time and it was his handling of the books that made such a forensic mess of things. His defense, when this was pointed out to him, was that the rest of the Board should have stopped him!
Long story short, the courts dissociated the plaintiff group (Clare and lot of his doctor friends who he talked into investing and a few SSI members) from both the Club and LLC, and we bought out their shares at around $1,000 each, which is what we offered to do in the first place (Clare wanted $5,000/share).
In any case, the final footnote to a dark chapter in the history of Sky Soaring.
John F. Phelan
Clarence Crosby Close
1926 – 2019
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Clarence Crosby Close, M.D. died peacefully at age 93 on Tuesday, August 6 at his home In Northbrook, IL. Clare Close was born on March 8, 1926 in Lockport, Illinois to Ralph and Dessie Close. One of three children, Doctor Close joined the Army Air Force at age 18 and served as a radioman on B-29s from 1944-1946, attaining the rank of Staff Sergeant. This created a lifetime love of flying and for many years, Dr. Close was an expert glider pilot.
Returning to his native state in 1946 after discharge, he earned his undergraduate degree in pre-medicine at Northwestern University. Doctor Close completed medical school at the University of Illinois at Chicago and interned at Cook County Hospital. In 1950, he and Luann Denning were married. Together, they raised five children in Northbrook: Wayne, Kevin, Karen, Brian and Craig. In 1954, Doctor Close established a family medical practice in Northbrook, making house calls, delivering babies, performing surgery and sharpening his skill as an expert diagnostician. He retired in 1993. He found time to serve on the original board of directors for the First National Bank of Northbrook and was elected twice as the Head of Family Practice at Highland Park Hospital. An early “audiophile”, Dr. Close traveled across Chicago recording some of the great classical music performers of the area during the 1960s.
He was preceded in death by his beloved Luann after 54 years of marriage and is survived by his five children Wayne, Kevin, Karen, Brian, and Craig; 10 grandchildren, 9 great-grandchildren, and his companion Patricia Conard who made him happy for the final 12 years of his life.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Clare’s memory to the Chicago Botanic Garden, chicagobotanicgarden.org, 1000 Lake Cook Road Glencoe, IL 60022
Plans for a celebration of Clare’s life are pending. Those wishing to participate or contribute memories to Clare’s Remembrance page please contact DocClose_Celebrate@att.net