Ivica (John) Celan, 75, of Waukegan, Illinois passed away unexpectedly on Thursday, July 15, 2021. He was born in Split, Croatia to Stjepan and Ruza (Kovac) Celan on December 19, 1945.
He grew up playing soccer at a high level in what was at the time known as Yugoslavia and went on to serve in the Navy and attend trade school there. During a vacation in Europe in 1968, he decided to emigrate to Canada, and after a time there he was invited to play semi-professional soccer in Milwaukee, WI. He met Pamela Heikenfeld and they married on Valentine’s Day, February 14, 1989, and they spent the next 32 years together.
Ivica was a life-long sports fan, anyone who came into his home could find him watching two different sports at once. He was also a lover of animals, travelling, and meeting friends at the coffee shop for spirited discussions. He and Pamela took many trips around the country during their years together.
Ivica is survived by his wife, Pamela; brother Marko, sisters Anka, Karmela, Marija, Tomislava and their families in Croatia; his sister and brother in-law Jacque & Larry Monroe, his brother and sister in-law John & Jan Heikenfeld and their families in Texas.
He was preceded in death by his parents, sister Ljubica and his mother in-law Marceline Heikenfeld.
Warren Funeral Home is assisting the family.