As dramatic as it was to see large Nazi swastikas hanging from buildings on Westgate the weekend before last (see previous item), a smaller drama was unfolding just across the brick street on Marion at the burbling fountain that kids love to play in.

As related by a couple of eyewitnesses, a homeless man, clearly the worse for wear and not looking particularly stable mentally, walked up to the fountain and, after studying it for a minute or two, got in and started retrieving the coins that passersby had tossed there (for good-luck wishes). A young expectant couple, looking very close to their due date, judging by mom’s ample bundle, who also happened to be standing there, looked even more shocked by this development than the swastikas hanging nearby. 

After studying the homeless man’s mission for a moment or two, the soon-to-be father crawled into the fountain and began helping him collect his coins.

A surprising act of compassion with swastikas as the backdrop. 

Only in Oak Park … 

Ken Trainor

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