40 years ago

I didn’t mean to mention new editor Larry Kaercher again so soon, but he wrote the most thoughtful half-editorial I’ve come across in a while. The subject was disruptive behavior at Proviso East High School and the text was aimed at the students.

In excerpts and quotes, it began with a call for the silent majority (behaved students) to do something about the loud mouth minority (resident troublemakers). He urged students of all colors to make it their own choice to not be involved in unwarranted protests or emotionally rigged riots when the partakers are often the exploiters. “Most students are not engaged in such activities,” he wrote, “So kids, what does that tell you? You can conclude that your intelligence is being insulted by classmates who can’t carry your scholastic shoes. Somebody has to prove to me that troublemakers make the honor roll.”

Then Kaercher’s argument weakens, I think, with his failure to include a concrete call to action for his silent majority to effect the changes he urged. Instead, he resorts to unrelated issues like “pot” and “Communist influences,” – at which point he had already written the best part of his essay.

From the April 29, 1970 Forest Park Review

30 years ago

Every day we face the unknown; that’s the order of things. But some of us are challenged more than others. At 11:30 p.m., Nov. 18, 1979, officer Joe Byrnes tried to break up a disturbance in front of 228 Desplaines Ave. One of the combatants, Brian Remick, a 22-year-old degreed karate expert, described by police as a “wildman,” allegedly attacked Byrnes with “extreme ferocity.” To this day, the retired Lt. Byrnes carries a 5-inch plate in his foot from the shattered, dislocated ankle he suffered. He was incapacitated for five months before returning to the force.

From the April 16, 1980 Forest Park Review

20 years ago

Chase scenes on the Eisenhower happen regularly, but this one was different. It took place on foot. Police pulled over a young Chicago driver on a misdemeanor. He was stopped driving north on the Harlem Avenue overpass. As the officer approached, the driver bolted, jumped the fence near the site of today’s Volvo agency and sprinted onto the expressway. Trying unsuccessfully to wave down traffic, he attempted to enter the passenger side of a slowed vehicle. The fellow then vaulted onto the car’s hood, only to be shaken free with a few deft zigzags by the driver.

With little going for him save persistence, he then clawed at the passenger door of a stopped semi truck. Finally, he sought refuge under the cab’s rear axle before being nabbed by the cops. Turns out the suspect had darker sins to hide. He was wanted in Cook County on a $40,000 drug warrant.

From the Mar. 28, 1990 Forest Park Review

10 years ago

“Guy walks into a bar …” How many jokes come with those openers? But seriously folks, a guy did walk into the Nut Bush tavern at Harlem and Franklin 10 years ago. It was almost 1 p.m. in the afternoon. He asked the bartending owner if he could phone his auto dealership because he had locked his keys in his car. Permission given. After hanging up, he told the management that the $33 “rescue fee” was in his wallet inside the car; could he borrow the cash and return it when the dealer arrived?

After lending him the money the Samaritan answered a brief call in the back room. Returning to the bar, he realized the caller hadn’t mentioned the make, year or color of the vehicle. He also noticed no guy … no car … no $33. All that remained were a couple of weak jokes:

Horse walks into a bar. Barkeep says, “How come the long face?”

Two sandwiches walk into a bar. Barkeep says, “We don’t serve sandwiches here.”

From the April 5, 2000 Forest Park Review.