Check out this year’s Forest Park Community Guide!

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Our deepest sympathy goes to the family of little 2-year-old Brianna Abigale Dodge, who died last Thursday, April 24. Brianna was the daughter of Melissa and Kevin Dodge; beloved granddaughter of Elsa and Phil Kachlic. The precious little baby suffered from many afflictions for more than a year.

She is also mourned by her great grandmother, Martha Heine, who came back to Forest Park from Brazil where she serves as a missionary. Little Brianna also leaves behind a big sister, Jessica; and a brother, Ryan; as well as her uncle, Dan Venske.

A memorial service will be held at Grace Lutheran Church in River Forest on Monday, May 5 at 11 a.m. Rev. Phyllis Kirsten will officiate at the services. This will be one of Rev. Kirsten’s last official duties as minister of the Lutheran Church. Phyllis will be retiring in early May. She, too, will be sorely missed by all who attend Grace Lutheran. We hope she will return from time to time.

On a much lighter note, some of Forest Park’s longtime friends who get together now and then went to see “Jersey Boys” last week. Jan Behnke, Dixie Pardun, Joann Leber, Nedra Wendt, Katina Messino, Shirley Jahoda and Joan Pellegrino began the evening with dinner at the Italian Village.

The charming young lady seen here shaking hands with U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is none other than the granddaughter of our own Irene and Ed O’Shea. Maggie Hillmann is a junior at Indiana University working for the state department in Washington, D.C. She is in love with her work, and will be returning next semester. She hopes to have a career in government.

The movie at the Community Center on May 8 will be “No Reservations” with Catherine Zeta-Jones starring as the head chef at an upscale restaurant. A tragic car accident upsets her plans. Reservations for the screening are not required. The movie starts at 1 p.m. Popcorn will be served, and transportation is available by appointment A few spots may remain for the Wednesday trips. You can always save a place on the waiting list.

The Mystery Writers of America will hold their Midwest meeting at Centuries & Sleuths on Sunday, May 18 at 1 p.m. Guest speaker will be Steve Bogira, author of “Courtroom 302.”

On May 1, say happy birthday to Larry Peter Geraci and Emily Fjelstad; on the 2nd, to Karen Hawkins, Kate Schultz, Alexandra Zaverdas, Madison Grace Kaup and Maria Gianelli ; on May 3, to Phil Blum; on May 4 say happy birthday to Mary Jane Grimes; May 5, Bill Dwyer, Sarah Ann Bothie; May 6, to Shirell Mollo.

Don’t the magnolia trees look exceptionally beautiful this year? If I remember correctly, last year’s magnolias didn’t bloom at all.