Mayor orders response to repeated bridge mural vandalism

'No Human is Illegal' displayed on Community Center billboard

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By Maria Maxham

In response to repeated incidents of vandalism to a mural on the Circle Avenue bridge over I-290, Forest Park Mayor Rory Hoskins on Nov. 20 directed village staff to display "No Human is Illegal" on the Howard Mohr Community Center's digital billboard at the corner of Desplaines Avenue and Jackson Boulevard.

This followed what is at least the sixth incidence since April 2019 of vandalism of the "No Human is Illegal" mural on the Circle Avenue bridge.

The Nov. 20 vandalism, which was discovered early in the morning, involved paint covering parts of the wording of the mural. Previously, the mural was defaced either by paint or by cardboard and/or plywood glued over part of the words.

According to Village Administrator Tim Gillian, a police report was filed, and John Doss, director of Public Works, was on the bridge with his crew on the morning of Nov. 20 to repair the mural.

When Hoskins was informed of the vandalism, he asked Community Center Director Karen Dylewski to add the message to the billboard.

Hoskins said he wants the public message to "affirm the dignity of people."

"We don't use the Community Center sign for political reasons, but I thought about how undocumented people in our village must feel. I wouldn't want to feel targeted like this," said Hoskins.

The message on the bulletin board will be up for two more days.

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Reader Comments

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Kris McCoy  

Posted: November 21st, 2019 9:48 PM

Thank you Mr. Mayor! This sign is much more representative of this village than the ugly acts of vandalism on the mural.

Micki Leventhal  

Posted: November 21st, 2019 9:25 PM

I now take a lot more pride to identify as a Forest Parker. Thank you, Mr. Mayor

Jerry Webster  

Posted: November 21st, 2019 5:20 PM

Mr. Mayor, the sign is not political, just anti racist, good for you.

Kate Nolan  

Posted: November 21st, 2019 1:57 PM

Well done! Forest Park strives to be a welcoming village for all!

Kristin Pekoll from Forest Park  

Posted: November 21st, 2019 1:49 PM

Thank you Mayor Hoskins! I'm proud of that sign and our village for making a statement of inclusivity.

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