Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Bill Shea Dies

From the Dec. 15, 2013, Springfield (Il) State Journal Register "Bill Shea, founder of Springfield's Route 66 Museum, dies" by Lauren Leone-Cross.

Bill Shea's Route 66 Museum/gas memorabilia place is located on Peoria Road, the old Route 66, near the Illinois State Fairgrounds. One thing he always did was personally greet all his visitors. I know he came right up to Liz and myself when we first came to his place back in 2002.

He converted his gas station into his museum, because as his wife said, "That old man. He never throws anything away." I know the feeling, Mr. Shea.

He began pumping gas on Route 66 in Springfield in 1946, after he left military service in World War II and continued that until 1995, when he started his museum. His place at 2075 Peoria Road is filled with gas-related items and I was always impressed with the small vial of sand from D-Day that he had there. He was at D-Day  His health was declining in 2012 and he was not always there to greet visitors even though I'm sure he would have if he could.

In 2011, Springfield decalred Bill Shea's birthday, December. 30th, as "Bill Shea Day." He was often seen in Illinois travel commercials and magazines.

Sure Going to Miss Him. --RoadDog

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