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McHenry County College fire safety instructor, retired Wauconda deputy chief dies

Edward “Ed” Dagdick of Ingleside died Tuesday night at age 61 from complications associated with liver cancer, Wauconda Deputy Fire Marshal Mike DaValle said.
Edward “Ed” Dagdick of Ingleside died Tuesday night at age 61 from complications associated with liver cancer, Wauconda Deputy Fire Marshal Mike DaValle said.

A McHenry County College fire instructor died Tuesday from complications associated with liver cancer.

Edward “Ed” Dagdick of Ingleside died Tuesday night at age 61, Wauconda Deputy Fire Marshal Mike DaValle said.

Dagdick served with the Wauconda Fire District for 38 years and retired as a deputy chief.

“Ed was very much a mentor to everyone. He was a fireman’s fireman,” DaValle said. “He was passionate about training, passionate about family, passionate about safety.”  

DaValle described Dagdick as a man “who put others first” no matter what.   

“He was a good leader, good mentor,” DaValle said, adding that the fire district is working “very hard to stay as positive as we can.”     

DaValle said Dagdick was a passionate Cubs fan who was a season ticket holder. He said Dagdick enjoyed traveling to Arizona for the team’s spring training.

“It was his big passion outside of here,” DaValle said.   

Dagdick is survived by his wife, Laura Dagdick; his children, Sarah Schmidt, Kelley Dahl, Kathleen Dagdick, Rick Graves and Jonathan Graves; his grandchildren, Ricky Graves, Emma Schmidt, McKenna Schmidt and Everleigh Dahl; and other family and friends, according to his obituary.  

McHenry County College posted a message on Facebook honoring the fire science instructor.

“It is with great sadness that we share news of the passing of one of MCC’s own, adjunct fire science and [emergency medical services] instructor, Ed Dagdick. Ed began his teaching career at MCC in 2000 with the EMS program. He then became a fire science instructor in fall 2007. He was instrumental in the donation of MCC’s first fire engine from the Wauconda Fire Protection District,” the message read. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to Ed’s family and friends during this difficult time. He will be dearly missed by all.”  

The college is honoring the firefighter with bunting around the college’s fire tower sign.

In a statement, Wauconda Fire Chief David Geary called Dagdick a “cornerstone” of the department.

“He was a hometown hero that rose through the ranks and gave his blood, sweat and tears to the fire service,” Geary said. “Chief Dagdick was diagnosed with cancer just 50 days following his retirement from the Wauconda Fire District. Please pray for his family during this extremely difficult time.” 

A Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Saturday at Transfiguration Catholic Church, 316 W. Mill St., Wauconda, followed by a funeral procession at 11 a.m. Burial will take place in Millburn Cemetery, 18550 Millburn Road, Wadsworth.

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