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Forty Years Ago

In 1967, Warren Beattie and Faye Dunaway enacted the wild adventures of Depression era bank robbers and killers Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker. In 1968 another man/woman combo, who just could have been influenced by the movie, reenacted the dynamic duo’s doings by knocking over a gas station here. The pair drove up to the Shell pumps, each brandishing a .45-caliber automatic as they ordered manager Gerald Major to open the register. They helped themselves to $90 plus $50 carried by Major, who they pushed into the men’s washroom with instructions to count to 50 before coming out.

Two women who had remained in the women’s washroom freed the manager. Finding the telephone wires pulled, the three flagged down police officer Ronald Kline. Just as in all the episodes of the movie – except the final one – the Bonnie and Clyde of Harlem Avenue slipped away.

From the April 18, 1968, Forest Park Review

Thirty Years Ago

Gunner’s mate 2nd Class David Hoeschele, Coast Guard, earned a presidential citation for his part in the rescue of an ore boat in distress on Lake Superior. He was on duty aboard the180-foot buoy tender Woodrush when it spent more than two weeks searching for the ore carrier. Finally, on the evening of Nov. 10, 1975, the submerged vessel was found. The mission required 18 days. The ship was the legendary Edmund Fitzgerald.

A cold and unending winter, like the one just past, can kill. It’s in the order of nature to be relentless – or is it indifferent? A feature article in the March 22, 1978, Review told how a cold winter could take its toll on fish. A long, frigid Midwestern season with lots of snow can decimate a fish population through suffocation. Snow-blanketed lakes can shut off the penetration of light, necessary for the production of oxygen that sustains virtually all aquatic life. Given enough reduced oxygen and frigidity – well, you get the picture.

It’s reminiscent of Holden Caulfield’s romantic query in “Catcher in the Rye” – visiting that frozen lagoon in Manhattan’s Central Park and asking where the ducks went for the winter. Unromantic though it may sound, if they were dumb enough not to fly south by October, they probably got snuffed out.

From the March 22, 1978, Forest Park Review

Twenty Years Ago

Ugly update. Results of the Ugly Bartender charity contest showed that Bridgett Kelly and Barbara Curran, from Dave’s Sports Bar were applauded for raising between $500 and $1,000 in the multiple sclerosis fundraiser. Total proceeds of $107,545 would benefit Chicago area MS research.

Duke Ellington was born in Washington, D.C., yet musically he came from everywhere, so inventive and influential was he. Greg Sergo of Forest Park was a rabid appreciator and follower of the Duke, even before meeting him in 1957 at Chicago’s foremost jazz night club, the Blue Note. In time, Sergo felt fated to put together an ensemble of eight professionals, he on drums, to share his love of “Ellingtonia” – from “Mood Indigo” to “Black and Tan Fantasy” to “Take the A Train.” And on and on. The group’s name was the Ellington Dynasty, and they played all that great jazz throughout the ’80s and ’90s.

Just writing about the music that Ellington et al. composed and played, makes me put on a CD. How about you?

From the April 20, 1988, Forest Park Review

Ten Years Ago

Just a quick backward glance over the decade. The old library, the new library. The old mall, the new mall. The old and new Madison streets. Affordability and sane taxation for homeowners and businesses. Good schools and ethnic melding. Location, location and location. Are most of us better off than we were 10 years ago? Warts and all, and all in all, you call it. There might be a lot of substance behind the slogan, “Small town charm. Big city access.” It’s said that it takes a village to make a village, and ours seems to be making it. Let’s take care to make it better.

From the pages of the last ten years.