It was way back in 1993 that Virginia Cassin retired as Oak Park’s village clerk after multiple terms. At the time, the Journal’s editorial page dubbed her “St. Virginia.” It was just a bit in jest, a nod to the high regard in which she was held.
Ginie Cassin was the best of Oak Park. A genuine friend to everyone. The ultimate connector of those with power to those on the outs. A wonderful listener. A determined advocate for causes she gave her full heart to. Early on, before being elected village clerk, that public cause was open housing. In office, it was transparent government. And in her long retirement, it was cementing the place of Ernest Hemingway in a village that never knew just what to make of its favorite son once removed.
Ginie moved from her house on Grove, a home where she and Bill raised an actual passel of kids, in 2018. The move was to Minnesota where some of those kids had landed. She died last week at the determined age of 96.
This village would do well to once more aspire to her generous spirit, her gracious ways, her easy smile and laugh, and her ability to persuade.