The former longtime owner of a beloved diner in Forest Park died this month, some 10 years since he last stood behind the counter of the Madison Street restaurant. Peter Karnezis, 78, owned what is now Louie’s Grill, 7422 Madison, until 1998.

For decades, Karnezis and his wife, Lee, served breakfast and lunch to public officials, actors and average Joes. Mayor Anthony Calderone has been a regular at the diner since the mid ’60s, he said, and came to know Karnezis so well that he invited the restaurant owner to his wedding.

“A lot of people in
Forest Park know Pete in the same way that, over the last 10 years, people have gotten to know Louie and his wife,” Calderone said.

Karnezis died Jan. 5 and is survived by his wife, two children and three siblings. Funeral services were held in
Chicago at St. Haralambos Greek Orthodox Church, 7373 N. Caldwell.