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In Memoriam: Olaf Gjøvik

August 7, 2020
Olaf Gjøvik, proprietor of seven new-car franchises in Sandwich and Plano, died peacefully July 22 at age 98.
Mr. Gjøvik served in the U.S. Navy during World War II, then he and his wife developed a 22-acre autoplex that employs more than 100 people. General Motors recognized his 50 years as a franchisee in 2018 at a special ceremony with multiple awards and citations.
Through the years, the towns surrounding Sandwich and Plano felt the benefit of Mr. Gjøvik’s generosity as he sponsored sports teams, donated cars to charities, and supported countless charities. He was a founding member of the Sandwich Rotary Club and held various positions including as president.
Renowned for his great storytelling and sense of humor, Mr. Gjøvik was a man of deep faith and was devoted to his church. He loved woodworking, boating and camping, hunting, and riding motorcycles (well into his 80s), and he often hopped into his motorhome to visit family around the country.
Mr. Gjøvik’s first wife, Florence, died in 2010 after a 64-year marriage. Survivors include his second wife, Candy; daughters Judy, Jan and Dawn; sons Mark and Scott; nine grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; and three great-great-grandchildren.
When appropriate after COVID-19 issues subside, the family plans to hold an event to celebrate Mr. Gjøvik’s life. Donations appreciated to the Open Door Rehabilitation Center in Sandwich; Fox Valley Older Adults, also in Sandwich; the Fox River Lutheran Church in Norway, Illinois; or the Salvation Army.