The Oak Park Board of Trustees rejected a proposal to designate an honorary street sign for the late Val Camilletti, the beloved local record purveyor, who died in July.
The honorary street would have run in front of Camilletti’s record store, Val’s halla Records, 239 Harrison St.
Trustee Jim Taglia was the sole yes vote on the proposal and Trustee Deno Andrews recused himself from the vote, stating that it was a conflict of interest because he is serving as executor of Camilletti’s estate.
Andrews is the trustee who proposed the honorary street for Camilletti.
Trustees said they opposed the measure because of the slippery slope of honorary streets becoming more common.
Trustee Bob Tucker said he loved Camilletti and loved the store but added, “I don’t want to get into the habit of doing honorary streets.”
Trustee Jim Taglia said he could get behind this particular honorary street designation, but it should be the only one. “I can’t say there’s a groundswell of support for a street naming program,” he said.
Andrews said after the vote that he was disappointed but felt his colleagues’ reasons were valid. “I understand not wanting to set a precedent or start a street-naming program,” he said. “I respect their vote.”
Meanwhile, friends and family of Camilletti gathered at FitzGerald’s nightclub in Berwyn on Sunday, Sept. 16, to celebrate Camilletti’s life.
Oak Parker Andy Mead, a longtime friend of Camilletti, a former store employee, and a current Wednesday Journal employee, said about 300 people attended the event, which raised about $4,000 for Val’s favorite local causes: the Animal Care League of Oak Park, MusiCares and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Performers and specials guests included XRT DJ Terri Hemmert, The What 4, Expo 76, Ian Leith, Falling Stars, Beatle-leles and Live To Sing, a 50-plus member choir, which surrounded the crowd to sing Val’s favorite choral piece.
“It was an amazing gathering and celebration,” Mead said. “Val always welcomed kids, artists, musicians, pet owners, misfits, and we were all there Sunday — as was she — she was in the room.”
* This article was updated to correct Trustee Jim Taglia’s vote.