John J. Lukancic Middle School opened in 2006. But who was John Lukancic?
He grew up in the Joliet area and attended Joliet Junior College, Lewis University, and Northern Illinois University. He began his teaching career in 1960.
Over the next three and a half decades, he spent time at North View, all of Valley View School District’s junior high schools, West View (today called A. Vito Martinez), and finally the Valley View District offices as Assistant Superintendent in charge of personnel.
He retired in 1994, having served the district in some capacity for 34 years.
When the district decided to build a new set of schools, the middle school was quickly pegged for John Lukancic. The new building opened on Aug. 23, 2006 and, ever the educator, Lukancic was in attendance.
“I couldn’t miss seeing the kids coming in to school on their first day and meeting the teachers,” he said in a news release.
The official dedication of the school took place on Sept. 7, 2006. Lukancic still resides in the area.