University of Chicago Medicine Breast Cancer June 2022
Joan Hadac

Joan Hadac

Thanks to those who made Memorial Day meaningful

By Joan Hadac

Your correspondent in Clearing & Garfield Ridge

(708)496-0265 [email protected]

The small patch of green at the heart of Garfield Ridge came alive with the sounds of a trumpet player, a rifle salute and the singing of patriotic songs, all to honor those who have served in the military and given, as Rhine VFW Post Commander Charlie Johnson said, “the ultimate sacrifice” to keep the U.S.A. and its citizens free.

joanhadac

Joan Hadac

The short program hosted on Memorial Day by the Garfield Ridge Chamber of Commerce was led by President Mary Ellen Brown. About 50 to 60 people gathered to remember family members and friends they lost to foreign wars. She gave a nod to Dr. John Baietti, GRCC first vice president, who comes up with the artful themes sometimes featured in the triangle at 55th, Archer and Narragansett. Mary Ellen is very familiar in the neighborhood, helping businesses stay in the area and become successful.

Mary Shilney was there, supporting the veterans and those who put on the program. She is a very familiar face to all the movers and shakers in Garfield Ridge and Clearing with her enthusiasm and support for the community. She serves on local organizations, giving members a taste of her intelligence, wit and humor. She is a welcoming figure to all in her sphere.

Jim Homan was there, directing traffic and getting drivers to slow down for the safety of those at the ceremony.

Ald. Silvana Tabares took time out of her schedule and away from her family to come to the ceremony. She is a very visible and viable presence in the 23rd Ward, taking care of her constituents. She is a cheerleader for all.

The Garfield Ridge Neighborhood Watch was represented. They have labored to help spruce up the triangle and keep it secure.

The triangle itself was green and clean—better looking by far than I have seen in the 28 years I have lived in Garfield Ridge.

CRRNH PixForJoanCol 060921

Members of the Rhine VFW Post 2729 stand watch over the Memorial Day observance at the triangle at 55th, Archer and Narragansett.
–Supplied photo

But one man who gave his time, talent and money to make the triangle look that way, stayed quietly in the background. He took cellphone video on the ceremony, but never took the microphone.

No one saw when—hours earlier–he came out to make sure the lawn was cut and the triangle clean before the program.

No one saw when he donated thousands of dollars’ worth of labor to install the commemorative bricks that adorn the triangle. The same bricks that feature the names of loved ones, some who lived in the area, some whose families now live in the area who served and some who died in wars.

A bench adorns the triangle thanks to him, is a place to sit and reflect about what Memorial Day and everyday means; how every day someone is missing from family life and an empty chair is all that remains of that person.

I’m speaking of Geno Randazzo, owner of All Exterior Contractors, who constantly impresses those who call Garfield Ridge and Clearing home. He is not afraid to work hard to support this community, to make things better for all who live here. He does so much work behind the scenes no one knows about. He extends courtesies to those he doesn’t know, but need help right now. As a longtime member of the community, I want to extend my personal thanks to Geno.

And thanks to all of you for giving me time to reflect on my Uncle Jack.

Jack Heelan served three tours of duty in Vietnam as a frontline medic. I can’t imagine the horrors he saw. The family has a photo of him and my dad, he was my dad’s youngest brother–bright and laughing in his Army uniform. I was young then, so I don’t remember if he was between tours or just visiting before he went off to war.

After the war, I don’t know if he smiled much anymore. He remained a shadowy figure, not really settling anywhere for a long time. He suffered from mental illness and deteriorated both physically and mentally until he gave the ultimate sacrifice for his country. Technically, he did not die in a foreign war. So I don’t believe you’ll find his name etched on any Washington, D.C. memorial. But his name is etched in my heart.

A brick in the triangle says, Freedom isn’t free. It never was, and I know this for a fact.

Thanks too for letting me reflect on what Memorial Day means, letting me wave the flag, say the Pledge of Allegiance and sing songs that reflect patriotism and the goodness of this country. The ceremony at the triangle gave all of us a chance to say “God bless the USA” and mean it.

Local News

Mallory Pugh, who has six goals in seven games, will miss three games for the Red Stars in July because she will be playing with the United States in a World Cup qualifier. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Pro Soccer Report: Red Stars will miss three big guns during World Cup qualifying

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer Having world-class players on your team is a blessing. But during times like these, it can also be a curse. World-class players help NWSL teams win games. They also miss chunks of time during the season because of their commitments to playing in international competitions. For much of July, the…

CRRNH_TabaresLopez_062922

Mayoral race comes to Archer

Neighbors cheer as Lopez slams Lightfoot on crime By Tim Hadac Southwest Side civic and business leaders last Saturday got an early glimpse of the 2023 mayoral race, as 15th Ward Ald. Raymond Lopez made a campaign stop on Archer Avenue. Lopez was the guest of honor at a “meet and greet” held at the…

election 2022

Two incumbents square off in new 6th District

Newman, Casten battle for Dem nod By Steve Metsch It doesn’t happen often, but voters in the new 6th Congressional District have an unusual choice in the June 28 Democratic primary. Because of redistricting, two sitting members of Congress–Marie Newman and Sean Casten– are going toe-to-toe for the nomination in the June 28 primary. The…

election 2022

Six candidates vie for GOP nod in 6th Congressional District

By Jeff Vorva Six for 6. It’s a busy Republican field in the newly drawn 6th Congressional District and six candidates are duking it out on June 28 for the right to take on the Democratic survivor between sitting U.S. Reps. Sean Casten and Marie Newman, and Charles M. Hughes. The new 6th District includes a…

Zal

Zalewski defends record in re-election battle

By Steve Metsch Taking a break from the campaign trail – talking on a cellphone as he walked door to door – State Rep. Michael J. Zalewski (D-21st) said the choice facing Democratic voters on June 28 is simple. “I’ve said consistently that it’s the choice for voters between a record and a promise,” Zalewski…

CBOElogo

Early voting now open

Several Southwest Side sites available By Tim Hadac Although the next primary election is set for Tuesday, June 28, early voting has started. Voters may cast ballots at the Chicago Board of Elections’ “supersite” at 191 N. Clark. It is open now until election day, and its hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 6…

CBA

Bar Assoc. offers guidance on judge races

From staff reports For voters seeking guidance relating to the handful of judicial races on the ballot this month, the Chicago Bar Association now offers its “Judge Smart Pocket Guide” in English, Spanish and Polish. All versions are available at chicagobar.org/chicagobar/votejudges. The CBA provides judicial evaluations for candidates seeking to become a judge in Cook County,…

CRRNH_AjJuarez_062222

Future is bright for Angelina “AJ” Juarez

By Joan Hadac Your correspondent in Clearing and Garfield Ridge (708) 496-0265 • [email protected] This week, I have the pleasure of congratulating Angelina “AJ” Juarez, who recent graduated from St. Laurence High School after four years of success. An alumna of Twain School, AJ—among other things—was a four-year starter on the Vikings softball team. This season,…

CRRNH_TabaresHuerta_062222

They have her back

Two days before Christmas 2021, Chicago Police Officer Jose “Joey” Huerta, a Garfield Ridge resident, died of COVID-19 complications. Months later, his daughter, Ariel, graduated from Kinzie School. In a show of solidarity, 23rd Ward Ald. Silvana Tabares (left), herself a Garfield Ridge resident, and several dozen police officers showed up at the school to…

Thanks to Niego Real Estate, block after block in Clearing and Garfield are decked out each year in red, white and blue. Residents are asked to volunteer to pick up flags and decorate their whole block. --File photo

Niego Real Estate salutes America again

Popular flag program underway By Tim Hadac Clearing and Garfield Ridge residents who want to decorate their blocks in red, white and blue this Independence Day are encouraged to contact Niego Real Estate and reserve a supply of U.S. flags at no charge. The popular program to promote patriotism and community pride is now in…

Neighbors

AladdinsBanquets WebAd
CAPITOL RECAP: Pritzker to call special session after Roe v. Wade overturned

CAPITOL RECAP: Pritzker to call special session after Roe v. Wade overturned

By CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker will call a special session of the General Assembly in the coming weeks to focus on legislation to strengthen women’s access to abortion and other reproductive health services in Illinois. Pritzker made that announcement Friday, just hours after the U.S. Supreme Court released an opinion overturning…

6 Republicans vie to unseat Pritzker

6 Republicans vie to unseat Pritzker

By PETER HANCOCK & JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Republican voters in Illinois will choose from six candidates to challenge incumbent Democratic Gov. JB Pritzker in the upcoming June 28 primary. The field includes a conservative farmer and state lawmakers who is the recent polling frontrunner, the mayor of Illinois’ second largest…

Candidate interview: Alexi Giannoulias looking to reclaim statewide office

Candidate interview: Alexi Giannoulias looking to reclaim statewide office

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] Illinois voters might know Alexi Giannoulias as the state’s treasurer from 2007 to 2011, or they might know him as the Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate who lost to Republican Mark Kirk in 2010. He’s now looking to get back into public life as he runs for secretary…

Pritzker to call special session on reproductive rights

Pritzker to call special session on reproductive rights

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker will call a special session of the General Assembly in the coming weeks to focus on legislation to strengthen women’s access to abortion and other reproductive health services in Illinois. Pritzker made that announcement Friday, just hours after the U.S. Supreme Court released…

Candidate interview: Anna Valencia running for secretary of state

Candidate interview: Anna Valencia running for secretary of state

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] This story is part of Capitol News Illinois’ coverage of the race for secretary of state ahead of the Tuesday, June 28 primary. We’re reaching out to the candidates this week to discuss their policy positions and plans for the office should they be elected. Chicago City Clerk…

Republicans see opening in secretary of state race

Republicans see opening in secretary of state race

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – For the first time in nearly a quarter century, there is an open race for the office of Illinois secretary of state as incumbent Democrat Jesse White prepares to retire, and Republicans hope that will give them an opportunity to pick up a statewide elected office.…

Candidate interview: Secretary of state hopeful David Moore

Candidate interview: Secretary of state hopeful David Moore

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] This story is part of Capitol News Illinois’ coverage of the race for secretary of state ahead of the Tuesday, June 28 primary. We’re reaching out to all of the candidates this week to discuss their policy positions and plans for the office should they be elected. Chicago…

Tom Cullerton sentenced to 1 year in prison for embezzlement

Tom Cullerton sentenced to 1 year in prison for embezzlement

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – A federal judge in Chicago handed down a one-year prison sentence Tuesday for a former state senator who once chaired the Senate Labor Committee. Tom Cullerton, a Villa Park Democrat, pleaded guilty earlier this year to one count of embezzlement for receiving salary and benefits from…

CAPITOL RECAP: State Supreme Court again declines to rule on FOID Act

CAPITOL RECAP: State Supreme Court again declines to rule on FOID Act

By CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS SPRINGFIELD – In a 4-3 decision with a blistering dissent from the Republican minority, the Illinois Supreme Court declined to rule on a question of whether Illinois Firearm Owners Identification Act is unconstitutional. It was the second time the case of the People v. Vivian Brown came before the court and…

State audit finds billions in unemployment fraud

State audit finds billions in unemployment fraud

By BETH HUNDSDORFER Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – A state audit released Thursday found nearly $2 billion in federal money intended to help unemployed Illinoisans during the pandemic was lost to fraudulent claims in Illinois. The Illinois Department of Employment Security blamed “insufficient and flawed federal guidance” and a lack of controls on a…

CRR NH Archer Heights Credit Union
CRR NH Midway Storage House Ad