I have lived in Oak Park for most of my life, and I’ve always been proud to be a member of this community, but these past four weeks have astonished me. The compassion, care and support that my family has received following the tragic death of my husband, Michael, have given me a new appreciation for our community. On behalf of myself, my children and my late husband, I want to extend a sincere thank you. The flowers, cards, meals, snow shoveling, offers of assistance, and caring thoughts have been nothing less than amazing.
I want to make special mention of and a public thank you to District 97, Angela Dolezal, Faith Cole, Jeff Weber, Jen Galant and all the other teachers & staff from Longfellow & Julian who have provided support to me and my children, and have aided them in getting back to school and into some type of normal routine. I will forever be grateful.
Another special thanks goes to the Longfellow PTO (especially Jeanine Pedersen) for the coordination of the food tree, which alleviated a huge burden and allowed me to focus on spending time with my kids. To the Oak Park Police Department and Officer Scott, for his escort of the funeral procession through Oak Park: I know Michael would have gotten a kick out of that. Thank you for that honor.
To everyone, whether you sent a note or card, said a prayer, cooked a meal, sent flowers, coordinated and provided play dates, attended the wake or funeral, or had a kind memory or thought in honor of Michael, thank you. I know that his legacy of kindness, respect, and compassion will live on within each of you. I hope to continue to fulfill that legacy by taking opportunities in the future to give back to this community.