Huntley Fire Protection District Deputy Chief Albert W. Schlick III died Tuesday evening, a lieutenant with the district confirmed Wednesday.
Before serving in Huntley, Schlick was division chief for the Wauconda Fire District, so the two agencies are working together with his family to plan a service that will honor the life he lived, Lt. Eric Bentley of the Huntley Fire Protection District said.
“Just like anybody when they lose a family member, we’re suffering the loss and each and every one of us is humbled to have such a great leader in Albert Schlick,” Bentley said.
“He was a great mentor and ... [we are] truly at a loss,” he said.
Schlick died of a duty-related illness, which he became ill with on Nov. 3, according to a news release.
Schlick started his career as an on-call firefighter with the Wauconda Fire District in November 1987, according to a post on the fire district’s Facebook page announcing his death. He became a full-time firefighter in June 1991 and eventually moved up to serve as the district’s division chief of training.
Schlick was a member of several fire service organizations and committees, including the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association, International Association of Fire Chiefs and Illinois Society of Fire Service Instructors, according to the release. He also was involved with the Lake and McHenry County Specialized Response Teams and held the position of operations chief.
“Chief Schlick made everyone around him a better person,” according to the Wauconda Fire District post. “His passion, love, and knowledge of the fire service is what made him a mentor to so many.”
Schlick retired from the Wauconda Fire District in July 2015 and began serving in a new position as Huntley Fire Protection District’s deputy chief, according to the Facebook post.
“We send our condolences to the family and friends of Deputy Chief Al Schlick,” the Huntley Police Department said in a separate Facebook post. “Al was a good man who served our community well and he will be sorely missed.”
Schlick served the community of Huntley from 2015 until his death Tuesday.
“Chief Schlick had the ability to see the potential in people entering the fire service and help them achieve their best potential,” the Wauconda Fire District said in its post. “His advice was sought out by young and old across this great nation.”
“Certainly the Wauconda Fire District was the beneficiary of his selfless service and friendship, and he will be truly missed,” the post concluded. “Thank you for your service Al – we will take it from here.”
A visitation and fire department walkthrough will be held Jan. 12 at DiFiore Funeral Home in Huntley. Visitation will begin at 4 p.m. and conclude at 8 p.m. with the fire department walkthrough beginning at 6 p.m. with lineup at 5:30 p.m.
A Mass will be celebrated 10 a.m. Jan. 13 at St. Mary Catholic Church in Huntley. Interment will be private.
All COVID-19 safety measures and precautions will be followed, according to the release.