John Sokol Novak

John "Jack" Sokol Novak, 91, of Willowbrook, formerly a longtime Hinsdale resident, died Sept. 2, 2023.

Jack was born to John F. and Teresa Sokol Novak and grew up in Riverside. He graduated from Morgan Park Military Academy prior to attending Northwestern University, where he earned his degree in business administration.

He was a proud member of Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity and received a commission as a 2nd lieutenant in the Air Force at graduation. After serving in the military, he began his long business career with Sokol & Co., a food importing and manufacturing firm started by his grandfather.

Jack was an avid White Sox fan and a Little League coach in Hinsdale. He enjoyed fishing and boating, golf, skiing and world travel. He especially loved spending time at the family vacation home in Pickerel, Wis.. He was known for his sense of humor, love of a good party and fondness for Dixieland music.

The Novak family are thankful for the outstanding care and compassion given to their father by Ela Szczerba, Barbara Wnek, Jadzia Drewnowski, Dorota Cygan, Basia Szczerba, Maria Kubacka, Ula Ledworuch and Kathy Grela.

He is survived by his children from his marriage to Mary Clingman, Katherine James, John S. (Joyce) Novak Jr. and William C. (Leigh) Novak; his sister, Mary Ann Sadilek (the late Dennis); his grandchildren, Ryan, Connor, Mary and Katie Darby, Julie, Tim, Ashley and Michael Novak, Jim Olson and Elizabeth and Josh Novak; his 17 great-grandchildren; his nephew, Peter (Marita) Salkowski; and his niece, Joan (Dan) Robbins.

He is preceded in death by his daughter, Mary Jeanne Darby.

Visitation is at 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 9, at Union Church of Hinsdale, 137 S. Garfield Ave. A service will follow at 11 a.m. at the church.

Interment will be private.

Memorials may be made online to The Community House at; Northwestern University at; or Union Church of Hinsdale at

Sullivan Funeral Home in Hinsdale handled the arrangements.