Banko, Michael R. "Mike" Age 48, a resident of Naperville, IL since 1992, formerly of Palos Heights, IL, passed away Thursday, August 14, 2014 at Community Nursing and Rehabilitation Center of Naperville. He was born January 21, 1966 in Chicago. Beloved son of Richard "Dick" and Joan (nee Brockington) Banko; cherished brother of Debra (Timothy) Dunne of Naperville, IL and David (Molly) Banko of Marietta, GA; loving uncle of Emily and Julia Dunne, Leah and Spencer Banko; dear nephew and cousin of many. Mike grew up in Palos Heights, attended Carl Sandburg High School in Orland Park, IL, where he was a member of the swim team and graduated from Amos Alonzo Stagg High School, Palos Hills, IL. Mike was a member of the Stagg High School Wall of Fame. He was a dedicated 19 year employee of Wendy's on Rickert Dr., Naperville. Mike was involved with the Special Olympics for many years and first participated in the 1987 International Special Olympics Games, winning two gold medals and a silver medal. In 1990, Mike was named Illinois Outstanding Athlete, chosen from over 21,000 Special Olympics athletes and in 1991 was named Sports Channel Inspirational Athlete. Overall, Mike earned 42 local Special Olympic medals, 12 state medals and 3 international medals. He was an honorary member of the Illinois Law Enforcement Torch Run and was on the Torch Run poster with Bears football great Walter Payton. Mike and his family - parents, Dick and Joan; sister, Debbie; and brother, Dave - were chosen by the Joseph Kennedy Jr. Foundation as one of the First Families of Achievement. Visitation Tuesday, August 19, 4:00-8:00 p.m. at Friedrich-Jones Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 44 S. Mill St., Naperville. Additional Visitation Wednesday, August 20, 9:30-10:30 a.m. at Knox Presbyterian Church, 1105 Catalpa Lane, Naperville. Funeral services will follow Wednesday, 10:30 a.m. at Knox Presbyterian Church with Rev. Clinton Roberts officiating. Future inurnment: Clarendon Hills Cemetery, Darien, IL. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to: Little Friends, Inc., 140 N. Wright St., Naperville, IL 60540, (630) 305-4196, littlefriendsinc.org. Mike lived in his own townhome with the support of Little Friends. Donations can also be made to Adult Down Syndrome Center, 1610 Luther Lane, Park Ridge, IL 60068, (847) 318-2303, www.advocatehealth.com/Adultdown For more information, please call 630-355-0213 or www.friedrichjones.com.
Friedrich-Jones Funeral Home
44 South Mill Street Naperville, IL 60540
Published in Naperville Sun on Aug. 17, 2014