Obituaries Archive

Gilda Fontano of Fontano’s Subs passes away at 86

    By Susan S. Stevens The first person most people saw for more than a half-century as they entered Fontano’s Grocery Store, now Fontano’s Subs, was a tiny blond woman. If she was not at the checkout counter, she was in the kitchen, cooking meatballs and other Italian specialties. Few people saw her at […]

Rev. Michael Flynn of Nativity of Our Lord passes away at age 81

Those who knew him offer up a picture of the Rev. Michael Flynn, O.Carm., PhD, as a man for whom dedication underpinned every aspect of life, whether it was healthful living, intellectual development, or his chosen vocation as a Roman Catholic priest.  As a walker and biker, Fr. Flynn frequently explored the streets of Nativity […]

Rev. Donald Becker, longtime pastor of First Immanuel Lutheran, passes away at age 89

A marcher for desegregation, an advocate for fair housing, and a minister to Near West Side residents for more than a half-century, the Rev. Donald V. Becker has passed away at age 89. Rev. Becker was pastor of First Immanuel Lutheran Church, 1124 S. Ashland Ave., from 1958 to 1996. He also served as pastoral […]

Family and friends mourn Jimmy Tavolino

James “Jimmy” Tavolino died unexpectedly on Sept. 3 at age 36 in the home he shared with his parents. Many knew him because his family owns and operates Pompei Bakery at 1531 W. Taylor St. He grew up in the Taylor Street community and attended its local schools. Community members described Mr. Tavolino as loving, […]

Ernesto Ponticello, ‘tailor from Taylor Street,’ passes away at age 75

Ernesto Ponticello, known as the “tailor from Taylor Street,” passed away on March 3 at age 75.

Choirmaster, teacher Sam Parker passes away at age 71

Samuel Ray “Sam” Parker, music and choir director at Holy Family Church and music teacher at Children of Peace School, died Sept. 21 at age 71.

Carmen DeLaurentis dies at age 92

Carmen “Carmie Shoes” DeLaurentis, a community leader, lifelong resident of Little Italy, and lifelong parishioner at the Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii, died Sept. 19 at age 92.

Oldest area resident, Clara Laino, passes away at 104

Clara Laino (nee Nocerino) died July 22 at age 104.

Hayley Carlton, longtime Gazette reporter, passes away at 46

Hayley Carlton, a reporter for the Gazette for more than ten years, passed away at home of a heart attack on Aug. 3 at age 46. Born on Dec. 5, 1969, Ms. Carlton went on to graduate from Lourdes High School, earned a BA in journalism from Columbia College Chicago, and earned an MA in marketing communications from the Illinois Institute of Technology.

Jack Schaller, proprietor of Schaller’s Pump, passes away

John “Jack” Schaller, proprietor of the Schaller’s Pump bar and restaurant at 3714 S. Halsted St., passed away on May 26. He was 92.

Shirley Jones, former State Rep, passes away

Shirley Marie Jones, a former longtime Near West Side State Representative, passed away on March 20 at age 76.

UIC librarian, area resident Lisa Zhao passes away at 65

Lisa Zhao, a resident of the Taylor Street area, teacher, librarian at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and former president of the Chinese American Librarians Association, died March 22 of brain cancer. She was 65.