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Joseph (Bill) William Sharpe

February 20, 1938 January 2, 2021
Joseph (Bill) William Sharpe
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Obituary for Joseph (Bill) William Sharpe
Joseph (Bill) William Sharpe, of Peoria, passed away peacefully at his home surrounded by his loving family on January 2, 2021 at the age of 82. He was born to Joseph William Sharpe and Elizabeth Roberts on February 20, 1938 in Milwaukee WI.

Bill first married Nancy Clayton, the mother of his three daughters. He then married Judith Brown, the mother of his son. She survives. He then married Deborah Tilly in Italy in 2003. She survives.

Bill is also survived by three daughters, Cindy (George) Birkhold of Florida, Kelly Voelker, and Toni (Carl) Root of Peoria; one son Joseph William (Shelley) Sharpe III of Peoria; one step-daughter Erica Pegues of Wyoming IL and one step-son Troy (Betsy) Tilly of Peoria. Also surviving are eleven grandchildren and sixteen great-grandchildren; brother Thomas (Carol) Sharpe of MS and sister Susan (Kent) Currie of CO. Also considered as family Linda Nelson of CO.

Bill was preceded in death by his parents; an infant son Russell and a son-in-law James Voelker.

Bill attended Bradley University graduating in 1961 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration. He was President of the Alpha Kappa Psi Business Fraternity and served on numerous boards and committees while at Bradley. He also had the opportunity to work closely with Jack Brickhouse organizing fundraisers in the Chicago area for the Bradley Athletic Department. He was also a member of the Bradley Scholarship Society.

After working at Caterpillar Inc., Bill founded Sharp Income Tax Service in December of 1969. He grew that business to become the largest, single location, tax office in the United States preparing over 10,000 tax returns per year. Subsequently he owned and operated Total Income Tax Service and Sharp Payroll Service retiring in May of 2016. Bill earned recognition as a business visionary within the national tax practitioners’ community, having and implementing ideas before they became the norm. His advice was often sought by others. For 47 years, Bill never faltered one day in his enthusiasm and commitment to providing quality service for his faithful and loyal clients whom he also considered friends. His son, Joseph and oldest grandson William Sharpe continue to carry on his legacy.

Bill was an avid Chicago Cubs fan and thrilled to be able to see them win the World Series in 2016. Bill also loved reading, traveling, fine dining, and socializing in which he excelled!

Bill will be dearly missed by friends and family as well as by the many others he has helped throughout the years with his kind heart and generosity in both his business and personal life.

In lieu of flowers, Bill has previously requested memorial donations to Bradley University or St. Jude Childrens Hospital.

A private service for the family is in order. Friends and family are encouraged sign the online guestbook or leave their condolences or personal anecdotes by logging into

The Cremation Society of Mid-Illinois Co. Pekin/Peoria is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences may be made at
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