OSWEGO, Ill. — The Oswego Police Department and community are remembering retired Officer Keith Wilson, who died Monday after a battle with cancer. He was 54.
Wilson was an Oswego police officer for more than 20 years and retired in July 2017. He served as a traffic officer, school resource officer and was involved in Character Counts, the junior police academy and Operation Impact programs, the police department said in a Facebook post.
“Keith was a big part of the Oswego Police Department and will be profoundly missed,” the police department wrote in the post. “Our thoughts and condolences go out to Keith’s family and friends during this difficult time.”
The police headquarters will display a mourning bunting until he is laid to rest on Saturday.
A GoFundMe was created in June 2021 after he was diagnosed with esophageal cancer.
In October 2022, an update posted to the page said the chemotherapy “wasn’t working like it had been.” He eventually started a clinical trial in Chicago to try a new treatment.
“They say cancer is just a chapter in someone’s life that it doesn’t define your life story,” his sister wrote in the update. “Well, it may be a chapter in his life, but without a doubt it doesn’t define who he is.…his strength, courage and character does.”
The GoFundMe raised more than $46,000.
Thousands of people have responded to the news on Facebook and shared memories of him.
Several people remembered him as a school resource officer always willing to take their calls and offered to help.
One person remembered him as one of the officers who helped make sure they got back to their car safely after closing at a gas station.
“Keith was a great guy and he will be dearly missed by everyone and especially the people who had direct contact with,” one person wrote. “So sad to be gone at such a young age.”
Funeral services are scheduled for Saturday.