40 years ago

Oh boy. Another nothing-happened-in-Forest Park-40-years-ago headache. How to fill empty space with sweet nothings. Invention has been thought of, and dismissed – Christian ethic and all that. I’m strapped and trapped and got those white paper blues. But hold on! A single atom hardly exists, because it’s mostly space. I’ve got some notebooks lying around. I’ll fill white space with black ink; and share some favorite quotations.

“Don’t take life too serious. It ain’t no how permanent.” – cartoonist, philosopher, sense maker Walt (Pogo) Kelly

“I will not be daunted.” – Rose Kennedy

“Nobody likes gingerbread more than I do -and gets less of it.” – Abraham Lincoln

“When you’re going through hell, keep going.” – Winston Churchill

“We’re all more alike than different.” – Anon. (Long live the particulars that make us, us.)

Not from some slow days in February 1969

30 years ago

I’ve heard of “Barefoot Freedom for Women Week,” but Open Season on Law-‘biding Females?

At 8:15 p.m. on a Tuesday, a woman walking home on Ferdinand was approached by a Spanish speaking man apparently seeking directions. Language was a barrier and, apparently frustrated, he began striking the woman in the face, then dragged her down the sidewalk. When her screams brought several neighbors the man fled, zigzagging through several backyards, somehow losing his pursuers in the gathering dark.

A variation of the foregoing took place the next day when a woman stopped at the traffic light at Desplaines and Madison. A pedestrian crossing in front of her suddenly whirled, grabbed the door handle on the driver’s side, dragged her to the street, gunned the engine and effectively car-jacked the vehicle. Another motorist followed the fellow to the intersection of Franklin and Brown where he abandoned the car. The victim was taken to the hospital where she was treated for facial cuts and bruises.

From the Jan. 24, 1979, Forest Park Review

20 years ago

Tantalizing, mysterious and intriguing are words that apply to this police story. Back in 1970, a murder warrant was issued for the arrest of 23-year-old Ridolfo Lopez in connection to the death of Juan Sanchez, then 36. Sanchez had been shot dead in his apartment at 115 Elgin Ave.

It wasn’t until January of 1989 that Forest Park police learned that a man with the same name and birth date as Lopez had been arrested for a traffic violation in Los Angeles County, California. Until then, no leads had ever materialized in the case. Yet frustration remained a factor in that the suspect’s social security number and height failed to match. Further investigation was to be made into the case.

From the Feb. 1, 1989 Forest Park Review

10 years ago

We’ve “weathered” a few snowstorms in our time. The grand-daddy of them all was the blizzard of ’67, and Lawd, didn’t it snow? Twenty-six inches on Jan. 26 and 27. Thirty hours of quiet white. Still a record.

Then there was the severe winter storm of Jan. 12-14, 1979, that was as freakish meteorologically as Chicago is politically. It dumped 20 inches on a bed of 7 to 10 inches, and had everything to do with Jane Byrne dumping Michael Bilandic three months later to become Chicago’s new mayor.

So … two biggie snowstorms – in ’67 and ’79. A third whacked us early in ’99 but with less dire results. It was an 18-incher and seemed more picturesque and “homey,” though some power was lost and some traffic got snarled. There were a lot of kids happy to romp and caper when schools shut down for a day. (See photo.) Soon, we can again look forward to the end of winter and start complaining about the humidity. So it goes.

From the Jan. 6, 1999, Forest Park Review