Former Park District Commissioner Dies; City Pauses in Remembrance
Jim Petkus, who Ald. Chuck Toland called one of the founders of the Oak Forest Park District, died Tuesday, Jan. 8. Toland notified the Oak Forest City Council of Petkus' passing during its meeting, and the council held a moment of silence in his honor.
The Oak Forest Park District lost one of its founding members Jan. 8. Jim Petkus died around 7 p.m. Oak Forest Aldermen Chuck Toland interrupted the city council meeting to share the sad news.
“Mr. Petkus died about an hour ago,” Toland said. “He was one of our Park District founders and he's been involved with the city in every aspect: football, flag football, Raiders football, the baseball association and just about every youth organization we've had here in the city.”
Toland said he received a text message informing him of the news and felt he should share it with the council during the meeting.
“I just wanted to bring this up, right this second, so we can offer up a prayer to him and his family,” Toland said.
Mayor Hank Kuspa called it, "a tremendous loss for the city," while Alderman Rich Simon called for a moment of silence in memory of Petkus.
The city council stopped proceedings to honor Petkus, before continuing with its meeting.
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