A Family Funeral Home

Sonja Becvar

October 17, 1916 - May 6, 2022
Oak Park, IL


Life Story / Obituary


Sonja (nee:Kosner) Becvar, passed away Friday, May 6, 2022, at Belmont Village Senior Living, Oak Park, IL. She was 105 years old.

She was born October 17, 1916, in Chicago, Illinois, the daughter of Vaclav and Jaroslava (Bohac) Kosner. She married Dr. Ladislav E. Becvar in 1940. He preceded her in death in 1961.

Mrs. Becvar earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Chicago and her master's degree in Education from Loyola University in Chicago. She taught in Chicago Public Schools from 1950 to 1959 and then was an elementary school principal in the Chicago Public School System from 1960 until her retirement in 1982.

Immediately following her retirement, she was a docent at the Brookfield Zoo in Brookfield, Illinois. For many years, she served on the board and as secretary for the Council of Higher Education, an organization that provides higher-education scholarships to students of Czech and Slovak descent. She was also involved with School Children’s Aid and served as its secretary for several years.

She moved to Racine in 1990 and served as a docent within the Education Department at the Racine Zoo, a volunteer activity she pursued until she was 95 years old. Each year the Racine Zoo honors a volunteer by issuing the Sonja K. Becvar Volunteer of the Year award.

Her move to Racine led to reconnection with her first husband, Frank Vosicky, who died in 2000.

She was a member of the Olympia Brown Unitarian Universalist Church since 1991 and had been involved in a number of church related activities.

Mrs. Becvar was a life-long teacher and a person who enjoyed travel and the arts. Above all, she was an advocate for animals in need, for the environment and the sustainability of the planet.

She is survived by grandsons, Jeffrey Swano and Robert Jasenof of Oak Park, Illinois, other relatives and friends. In addition to her parents and husbands, she was preceded in death by her daughters Gabriella (Donald) Klein of Racine and Julia Swano.

In keeping with her wishes, private graveside services were held at Bohemian National Cemetery in Caledonia, WI. If desired, memorials are suggested to Olympia Brown Unitarian Universalist Church, Racine Zoo, HOPE Safehouse of any non-profit organizations that works to help animals in need.