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Forty Years ago

Bellwood’s Gene Cernan, co-member with Tom Stafford on the Gemini 9 space flight, was feted in the western suburbs when they and their families were met by Mayor Daley (the old man) at the O’Hare military base before joining a cavalcade that took them through Rosemont, Melrose Park, Broadview and finally, Bellwood, Cernan’s home town-where the Saffords joined the Cernan’s for some privacy and relaxation. Next day, the celebration resumed with a forum, a film and talks by both astronauts at Proviso High School, Cernan’s alma mater.

For those with fuzzy-or no-memories, it would be three years before Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin would leave man’s first footprints on the moon. Cernan was the last to do so with his final mission in December, 1972.

From the June 1966 issues of the Forest Park Review

Thirty Years Ago

The new Mrs. Howard Mohr stood beside her husband beaming as the mayor and state senator opened an envelope containing two tickets for a honeymoon flight to an unnamed European city. The gift was through the Jim Dale Travel Agency on behalf of a group of Mohr well wishers. The 14-day vacation was a highlight at the couple’s reception. Mr. and Mrs. Mohr said “The honeymoon will have to wait till the end of the current legislative session.” Alas and ironically, Mohr was taken with a heart attack just at the end of a farewell breakfast honoring him in Springfield.

On a happier note, family members and good friends held a party at Harry’s Penny Lounge for Village Commissioner Jim Sansone and his wife, Lillian. Thirty years ago they celebrated thirty years together. Out of this partnership came a son Jim, Jr., three daughters and (at the time) three grandchildren.

From the Jun./Jul. 1976 issues of the Forest Park Review

Twenty Years Ago

It was a beautiful day, but it was about to become as bad as it could get. Melvin and Rose Schwartz and their 4 year-old son, Brandon, of Chicago, were visiting the Jewish Waldheim Cemetery on Mother’s Day. At about 12:30 p.m. the family approached the gravesite when the tombstone of the boy’s grandmother fell on him. It was later thought that the base of the 38-inch high stone had settled into the ground, causing it to tilt.

Forest Park EMTs were called but found the youngster beyond help. He was pronounced dead at Loyola Medical Center. Scott Popelka of the ambulance crew told the Review that Brandon’s father had somehow lifted the 500-pound stone from atop his son before he ran to call for help. “It had to be adrenaline,” Popelka said, “because later it took four of us to lift it.” Remindful of the book, “When Bad Things Happen to Good People,” by Kushner.

From the May/Jun. 1985 issues of the Forest Park Review

Ten Years Ago

Al Buerger, ex-middle school teacher here, threatened to write two more columns before hanging up his journalism shoes and moving to the famed resort town of Lyons. He claimed he had a lot of left-over literary scraps to share, some of them true.

Like, coming upon a hair relaxer that not only relaxed hairs but enlarged follicles, the better to shake them out. The manufacturer gave samples to an entire community, turning their locks into a brilliant dayglow green. He cited a team of Bulgarian scientists who introduced a type of genetic material from the uncommon earthworm (Tonsocyopterus replanatus). When injected into the scalp, 98 percent of users sprouted a full head of hair-green as could be. One drawback: Each time it rains the user has an uncontrollable urge to lie down in a field and burrow.

From the May 22, 1996 issue of the Forest Park Review