“Don’t retire, Mayor!”
That was the cry that came from a man attending the funeral services Thursday of Corey Ankum, one of two firefighters killed last week due to a roof collapsing underneath them.
IT WASN’T QUITE along the lines of Joey’s chant in the closing scene of the 1953 film “Shane,” but it was worth noting nonetheless.
The political cry came as Daley was stepping on stage at the Apostolic Church of God to deliver his eulogy for Ankum, whose widow, Demeka, happens to be one of Daley’s secretaries at City Hall.
For the record, Daley got a bit choked up at one point while saying that Ankum was among the rare individuals who deserve to be called a “hero.”
Daley himself didn’t give any indication of hearing the shout, but it caught the attention of many of the nearly 3,000 people who crammed the church’s main chapel. Among those people was former Sen. (and mayoral hopeful herself) Carol Moseley-Braun.
NO WORD ON what reaction she had to the shout, which came in a place that I’m sure she’d like to think is one where her candidacy would be the political preference.
One other notable moment. Rev. Louis D. Jones, while presiding over the funeral service, noted the presence of Chicago Police Commissioner Jody Weis, and offered to alter the program to give him a chance to say something sympathetic about Ankum – who actually worked as a patrol officer in the South Chicago police district for just over one year before quitting to join the Fire Department.
Weis chose silence, which may have saved him from saying something that the rank-and-file cops would mock mercilessly on many future occasions.