Forty Years Ago

The year 1967, Vietnam. Forest Parker Robert Toner with the 25th Infantry Division was promoted to specialist, 4th class. He phoned his parents from Taiwan where he was on R&R and told them he was recovering from wounds received in action two weeks earlier. He was hospitalized for two days, then returned to duty.

The Year 2008, Iraq/Afghanistan. Again, the unheeded lesson: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

“Change,” urge the candidates from Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, to South Carolina and beyond. Vote with your best intelligence on Feb. 5.

A related post note told of a happy recollection. Marine Cpl. Allen Dohra of West Chicago returned from his tour in Vietnam. One of the first things he did was thank the Forest Park Review which, with the Forest Lions, chose Dohra’s Delta Company to show our village’s support and commitment to those fighting in Southeast Asia. Packages were regularly sent by businesses and people who chose to remember the troops, with everyday necessities like toothpaste, Band-Aids, paperbacks, snacks and white socks–especially white socks. Cpl. Dohra was honored at a dinner here by the Lions and this newspaper.

From the Nov. 23, 1967, Forest Park Review

Thirty Years Ago

Police Sgt. Harlie Merritt was returning home by car from a visit with his parents in upstate New York. The weather was bad–blizzard conditions–on the New York State Thruway. South of Buffalo, Merritt’s car collided with a snowplow. Word of the accident reached police headquarters here by teletype from the New York State Highway Patrol. His wife, Frances, a police radio operator here, flew to his bedside in a Buffalo hospital. Sgt. Gary Doss and Lt. Robert Conklin joined her a day later.

From the Dec. 14, 1977, Forest Park Review

Twenty Years Ago

Regular readers know the routine: a lost bound book of 1987 articles. And a back-up server at the library not ready for prime time. Lucky you have a far-sighted columnist who specializes in filling space from lists. Lists of tomfoolery and jackassification, but lists nonetheless.

This time the baboonery consists of Tom Swifties, a twist on the boys’ equivalent of the girls’ Nancy Drew adventures. Rather than explain, it’s got everything to do with adverbs (they usually end in “ly” and puns-and we all know that between adverbs and puns people go for the puns every time.

For example: “Hurry! Faster!” shouted Tom, swiftly … “I might as well be dead,” Tom croaked … “They had to amputate both at the ankles,” said Tom, defeated. “I dropped my toothpaste,” he said, crestfallen. “I’m sorry, Babe, but we’re gonna have to let you go,” said the Yankee general manager, ruthlessly, “Who discovered radium?” asked Marie, curiously. “I-I-I j-j-just can’t make myself s-s-say it, “he s-stammered.

From the missing pages of 1987

Ten Years Ago

Michael Bakalis, an Illinois educator of some note, served as president of Triton College from the late 1980s until he was dumped in 1992. His firing was a controversial issue, so he brought suit against the school charging that his dismissal occurred because of Triton’s long-standing record of political machinations.

In 1997, five years later, a decision came down in favor of Bakalis. He had charged that reasons for his termination were trumped up based on the political agenda of a Triton board majority that had refused him due process and breached his contact.

There’s more in this article by reporter Eric Linden. There’s almost always more in the matter of education, politics and money to be made in Proviso, and other nearby townships.

What was the settlement? A million? Two million? Whatever. The public will pay for it, now or eventually. That’s what an indifferent public is for. Yet if enough public did its homework (cared about such things and voted their informed conscience) enough responsible, right-thinking candidates would be voted in position to right the wrongs, keep the people from being stiffed and help turn out some well-educated students.

From the Dec. 3, 1997, Forest Park Review