Richard L. Bishop, 88

Richard L. Bishop, 88, of Urbana passed away at 8:11 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2019, at home.

A memorial service will be announced at a later date.

Mr. Bishop was born Aug. 12, 1931, at Lake Odessa, the son of Charles Clarkson and Mary Maurita (McClave) Bishop.

He married Dolores M. Prosek on June 12, 1954, and she survives.

He is also survived by his daughters, Marian Stone (Dave), Audrey Bishop (Richard Stout), Carol McCleary (David Sr.), and Dorothy Debolt (Jim); a son, Paul Bishop (Paula); a brother, Jordan Bishop (Joan); and sisters Janet Flaugh (Joseph), Charlotte Egan, Margaret Richter (George), Elizabeth Bishop-Martin, and Kathleen Wageley. Also surviving are nine grandchildren.]

He was preceded in death by his parents; and sisters, Barbara Piggott and Orpha Wilcott.

Richard (Dick) grew up the middle of nine children on a dairy farm in Allegan. After graduating from high school, he followed the footsteps of his older brother and sisters, attending Lake Michigan College. He then transferred to Case Institute of Technology in Cleveland, where he met his future wife Dolores on a blind date.

After graduation he and Dolores moved to Boston so Dick could continue his studies in mathematics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He earned his Ph.D. in June 1959 and accepted a position as a faculty member in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Illinois in fall 1959. During his career at Illinois he co-authored two textbooks and more than 70 research articles. He retired from the University in 1997.

After retirement Dick developed a passion for genealogy, which led to trips to cemeteries and county records offices in multiple states. He traced the Bishop family history to his 10th grandfather, John Bishop, who arrived in North America in 1639 and was one of the founders of Guilford, Conn.

Dick was a Fellow of the American Mathematical Society, served on the Citizens Advisory Board of the Champaign County Forest Preserve District and was Secretary of the Sierra Club, Illinois Chapter, Prairie Group.


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