Lakeside Bank 2022.July

Cooper enjoys farewell tour after 32 years at Shepard

Page 1 coop refer 5 5

Photo by Jeff Vorva

The Kobe Bryant farewell tour was a big story in the NBA in the past couple of months.

Dmitri Cooper’s farewell tour is on a much smaller scale but he appreciates it.

The 59-year-old Shepard tennis coach made it known he was retiring after 32 years and just about everywhere the Astros go, he receives well-wishes. 

“Someone is always congratulating me,” Cooper said. “It’s been nice. I’ve had some little parties and people have been giving me cards.’’

There will be a big party held in his honor from 7-11 p.m. May 14 at 115 Bourbon Street in Merrionette Park. Past athletes and students are invited to stop by but should RSVP to [email protected].

Cooper has been the head coach for the boys for 32 years and an assistant girls coach for 20. He said he also coached girls basketball for 29 years and soccer for two years. He teaches math and computer science at the Palos Heights school.

“I will miss the kids and being around them because they’ve always kept me young and energetic,” Cooper said. “I don’t know if will miss getting up early every morning, but I am going to miss the kids.’’

And some of the kids will miss him.

“It’s been fun – he always makes me laugh even though he is serious about tennis,” junior No. 1 singles player Paul Milkus said. “He has helped my game progress. I had some rough patches early and training with him really helps. I’m really sad he is leaving after this year. It would be really nice if he stuck around for another year.’’

Milkus said that he’ll miss a lot of the inside jokes with the coach during long tournaments.

“We’ve had some misadventures,” Milkus said. “During those tournament something bad always has to happen and we laugh about that.’’

While Cooper can’t brag of heavy postseason success (the Astros have won just one sectional title under his watch), he said he is proud of molding players to be the best they can be when they leave Shepard. While some coaches have the luxury of coaching year-long players who hit the United States Tennis Association Tours in the summer, Cooper said he gets plenty of freshmen who have never played the sport before.

He said that his favorite success story on the court is the doubles team of Mike Webster-Nate Wagner, even though the two finished 0-2 in the state in 2007. They won the Stagg Sectional title but slipped at state.

“That was the best doubles team I ever coached at Shepard,” Cooper said. “They were conference champs and sectional champs around here but when we got to state, the first round opponent was another sectional champion – two kids from St. Ignatius. We lost the first round . It was a bad draw for us but that team had talent.’’

Off the court, he said he enjoyed teaching some students who went on to accomplish big things.

 “I had a lot of kids come back and tell about all the successful things that they’ve done,” Cooper said. “There have been some doctors. There have been heads of companies. We have some in the Navy and in the government.

 “We’ve had quite a few kids who are now successful and that makes me proud.’’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Local News

Richards High School Bands Director Jordan Fransler will be running the Chicago Marathon on Sunday, October 9, raising money for Miracle Network Dance Marathon. (Supplied photos)

Richards teacher to tackle the Chicago Marathon

By Kelly White As bands director at Richards High School in Oak Lawn, Jordan Fransler’s days are filled with education and music, but that’s not all. In his free time, the talented teacher likes to put on his running shoes. “Running became one of my favorite hobbies several years ago. It started out as a…

SRP-IMAGE-Logo

Mount Carmel tested in win over Brother Rice

By Steve Millar Correspondent After Mount Carmel beat each of its first five opponents by 24 points or more, senior quarterback Blainey Dowling thinks it is good the Caravan had to fight to the end against an upset-minded Brother Rice team. Dowling ran for the game-winning 15-yard touchdown with 1:58 left to lift Mount Carmel…

In just its second year as a team, St. Laurence's girls golfers won a regional title. Photo courtesy of St. Laurence

Area Sports Roundup: St. Laurence golfers make history

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer   That didn’t take long. The St. Laurence girls golf program is in only its second year of existence but last weekend celebrated a major accomplishment. Coach Jim Tracy’s troops won the Providence Catholic Class 1A Regional by four strokes, logging a 372 to edge University High (Chicago), which finished…

SXU coach Mike Feminis reacts as the final horn goes off as he earns his 200th career win in a thriller over 18th-ranked Roosevelt. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Pigskin Wrap: St. Xavier tops Roosevelt in thriller, gets Feminis career win No. 200

By Jeff Vorva Staff writer Saint Xavier coach Mike Feminis was gunning for his 200th career victory, but it looked more like he might be tagged with his 78th career loss. After wasting a 14-point halftime lead, the Cougars found themselves down six in the closing minute of the Homecoming game Oct. 1 at Bruce…

Orland firefighters show how they extinguish a burning building. (Photos by Steve Neuhaus)

Community turns out to salute Orland firefighters at open house

Nearly 500 people attended an open house hosted by the Orland Fire Protection District on Saturday that featured an up-close look at the techniques firefighters use to respond to emergencies. Demonstrations by firefighters included a rope rescue showing how individuals can be rescued from apartment buildings; the dive team demonstrated how they can rescue individuals from…

recycling logo

Palos Township hosts recycling event Saturday

Palos Township and the Cook County Sheriff’s Recycling Program are holding a paper, electronics and drug recycling event on Saturday, October 1, at Township Hall, 10802 S. Roberts Road in Palos Hills. Township residents only are eligible to bring paper for shredding, electronics for recycling and unwanted or expired drugs for proper disposal from 9…

Livia Mitre, 9, of Beverly, was happy to be a part of Lake Katherine's Monarch Celebration.

Butterflies are king at Lake Katherine Monarch Celebration

By Kelly White Kicking off the fall season with a festival dedicated to the beautiful Monarch butterfly was Lake Katherine Nature Center & Botanical Garden. The nature center, located at 7402 Lake Katherine Drive, Palos Heights, held its 29th annual Monarch Celebration, on Saturday, September 24, and Sunday, September 25. Originally called a Monarch Butterfly…

Jerome Fears and his distinctive deformed hand. (Supplied photo)

Warrant issued for man wanted in attempted Oak Lawn carjacking

An arrest warrant has been issued for one of four men suspected of being involved in an armed carjacking in Oak Lawn that took place April 18 near the intersection of 99th Place and Minnick Avenue. Jerome D. Fears Jr., 20, of Chicago, is wanted for the attempted vehicular hijacking that happened in the early…

Orland Park Trustee Cynthis Katsenes voted "yes" to recreation fee hikes but said fees for non-resident using the aquatic center should be higher. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Recreation fees going up in Orland Park

By Jeff Vorva Prices for sports and activities will be going up in Orland Park. The village’s board of trustees voted Sept. 19 to increase fees for Sportplex’s open gyms, athletic fields and Centennial Park Aquatic Center membership and daily fees. Village officials cite rising costs of labor, materials, supplies, services and improvements for the…

A Spirit Halloween store is now open at 11185 W. Lincoln Highway in Frankfort. (Photo by Bob Bong)

Comings & Goings: Halloween stores are in full swing

By Bob Bong Frost is in the air, pumpkin spice is everywhere and spooky decorations have exploded in front yards across the Southland, which means it’s time for the seasonal Halloween stores to start popping up like zombies from the boneyard. Spirit Halloween, a seasonal retailer that operates in empty storefronts in the weeks leading up…

Neighbors

Illinois Supreme Court denies former lawmakers’ claim for back pay

Illinois Supreme Court denies former lawmakers’ claim for back pay

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a lawsuit filed by two former state legislators who sued for back pay they believed they were due for raises that they voted against while in office. Former Sen. Michael Noland, D-Elgin, and former Sen. James Clayborne, D-Belleville, argued…

Illinois takes Equal Rights Amendment to appeals court

Illinois takes Equal Rights Amendment to appeals court

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Attorneys for the state of Illinois joined their colleagues in Nevada and Virginia Wednesday in asking a federal appellate court to declare that the Equal Rights Amendment has been legally ratified as the 28th amendment to the U.S. Constitution. “I have a daughter who intends to…

CAPITOL RECAP: State announces further unemployment debt repayment

CAPITOL RECAP: State announces further unemployment debt repayment

SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker announced a plan Tuesday, Sept. 27, to reduce a $1.8 billion Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund deficit by $450 million through an infusion of unemployment-related revenues. The trust fund is the pool of money paid into by employers to provide a social safety net for unemployed individuals. The employer’s insurance premiums…

State to reduce $1.8 billion federal unemployment debt by $450 million

State to reduce $1.8 billion federal unemployment debt by $450 million

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker announced a plan Tuesday to reduce a $1.8 billion Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund deficit by $450 million through an infusion of unemployment-related revenues. The trust fund is the pool of money paid into by employers to provide a social safety net for unemployed…

Capitol News Illinois to expand operations with $2 million McCormick Foundation grant

Capitol News Illinois to expand operations with $2 million McCormick Foundation grant

By CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS SPRINGFIELD – Capitol News Illinois will significantly expand its operations as it enters the fifth year of operations in 2023 because of a significant grant from the Robert R. McCormick Foundation. The McCormick Foundation has announced a three-year, $2 million investment in Capitol News Illinois, a nonprofit news organization that provides…

State Sen. Emil Jones III pleads not guilty in bribery case

State Sen. Emil Jones III pleads not guilty in bribery case

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – State Sen. Emil Jones III pleaded not guilty in federal court Friday to three felony counts stemming from an alleged bribery scheme involving a red light camera company. Jones, 44, is a Chicago Democrat who has served in the Senate since 2009. He is also the…

Pritzker urges two lawmakers to resign

Pritzker urges two lawmakers to resign

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker called on two Democratic state senators Thursday to resign their seats amid allegations of misconduct. Sen. Emil Jones III, D-Chicago, was charged in federal court earlier this week with soliciting a $5,000 bribe from a red light camera company. And Sen. Michael Hastings,…

Pritzker urges two lawmakers to resign

Pritzker urges two lawmakers to resign

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker called on two Democratic state senators Thursday to resign their seats amid allegations of misconduct. Sen. Emil Jones III, D-Chicago, was charged in federal court earlier this week with soliciting a $5,000 bribe from a red light camera company. And Sen. Michael Hastings,…

Illinois Supreme Court denies former lawmakers’ claim for back pay

Illinois Supreme Court denies former lawmakers’ claim for back pay

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a lawsuit filed by two former state legislators who sued for back pay they believed they were due for raises that they voted against while in office. Former Sen. Michael Noland, D-Elgin, and former Sen. James Clayborne, D-Belleville, argued…

CAPITOL RECAP: Another Democratic senator charged in bribery scheme

CAPITOL RECAP: Another Democratic senator charged in bribery scheme

By CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS SPRINGFIELD – State Sen. Emil Jones III has been charged in federal court with three criminal counts tied to his dealings with a red light camera company. Jones, a Chicago Democrat, is the son of former Senate President Emil Jones Jr. The younger Jones has served in the Senate since 2009…

CRR NH Airport Heating Cooling
CRR NH Uhlmann Improvement House Ad