Afternoon Edition: June 1, 2022

Today’s update is a 5-minute read that will brief you on the day’s biggest stories.

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Workers from Daprati Rigali Studios install the Blessed Mother statue near the entrance of the Mission of Our Lady of the Angels’ Outreach Center in Humboldt Park neighborhood.

Pat Nabong/Sun-Times

Good afternoon. Here’s the latest news you need to know in Chicago. It’s about a 5-minute read that will brief you on today’s biggest stories.

This afternoon will be mostly cloudy with a high near 72. Tonight will also be mostly cloudy with a chance of showers and a low near 57. Tomorrow will be mostly sunny with a chance of showers and a high near 74.

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Afternoon Edition
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Top story

Statue honoring victims of Our Lady of the Angels fire returns to site of blaze

Leo Sorce was just 13 years old when he stood across the street watching flames rip through Our Lady of the Angels School in the winter of 1958.

He recalled being surrounded by dozens of his classmates who laid on the ground dying — if not already dead — but he said his inability to remember details of the carnage in front of him was a gift from God.

“My feeling is that we must always remember, we will never forget,” Sorce, 77, said through tears. “We have to honor our classmates and our sisters who lost their lives.”

Yesterday, a statue memorializing the victims of the Catholic school fire that claimed 95 lives and injured hundreds more returned to the site after more than 20 years.

The Blessed Mother statue was displayed at the Church of the Holy Family, 1080 W. Roosevelt Rd., since 1999. It was moved there after Our Lady of the Angels Parish School closed.

It now sits at the entrance of the newly renovated Mission of Our Lady of the Angels’ Outreach Center. The center is on the grounds of the former school building at 3814 W. Iowa St.

A procession of Chicago Fire Department firetrucks drove the statue from Church of the Holy Family to Mission of Our Lady of the Angels’ Outreach Center on yesterday afternoon.

Many are fond of the statue that memorializes the 92 elementary-school students and three nuns killed in the devastating blaze that ravaged Our Lady of the Angels school in 1958. The blaze triggered stricter fire safety codes nationwide.

Manny Ramoshas more on the return of the statue here.

More news you need

  1. A man jumped to his death from the 16th floor of the Trump International Hotel and Tower late this morning, according to Chicago police. An outdoor restaurant, Terrace 16, is located on that floor of the 98-story-tall building.
  2. A woman is suing an adventure park in Bloomingdale alleging she was left hanging by her neck on a zip line ride during a birthday party for her son last year. Evelyn Rapier says employees at Urban Air Adventure & Trampoline Park failed to strap her into the harness properly, causing part of it to come loose and slip around her neck.
  3. A Schaumburg mother was killed and her two young children were injured during a parasailing incident in the Florida Keys, authorities said. A sudden storm prompted a boat captain to cut loose their parasail, which then dragged them across the ocean and slammed them into a bridge, the Associated Press reports. 
  4. A federal inmate has won a legal fight to secure gender-affirming surgery from the U.S. Bureau of Prisons, according to the woman’s lawyers. Cristina Nichole Iglesias, who has been in prison for almost two decades, is set to become the first incarcerated person in federal custody to receive the surgery, according to her attorneys.
  5. Declaring Chicago a “city in crisis” and himself the idea-machine solution, former Chicago Public Schools CEO Paul Vallas today formally entered the race for mayor to unseat incumbent Lori Lightfoot. The fact that Vallas finished ninth in his 2019 mayoral campaign, with just 5.43% of the vote, is irrelevant now, he said.
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A bright one

Lincoln Park Zoo introduces 10-week-old lion cub to public: ‘Oh my God, they’re here!’

For the first time in 20 years, Lincoln Park had its “Lion King” moment.

The storied Lincoln Park Zoo welcomed its newest lion cub to the pride in March, and the youngster was officially welcomed into the city Saturday as he explored the outdoors for the first time.

Pilipili is a 10-week-old African lion cub, the son of adult lions Jabari and Zari. Pilipili is the Swahili word meaning “pepper,” a nod to the Pepper family responsible for funding much of the zoo’s lion exhibit and viewing area.

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Pilipili stands on a rock during a media and member debut of the lion cub at Lincoln Park Zoo in the Lincoln Park neighborhood, Saturday morning, May 28, 2022.

Pat Nabong/Sun-Times

Pilipili timidly emerged from the covered area of the exhibit, and around 1,200 Lincoln Park Zoo members watched as he grew more confident and playful during an early viewing of the cub. At several points, Zari picked up her son by the scruff of his neck using her teeth.

Those in the crowd craned their necks and camera phones to get the best view of the 20-pound cub as he sauntered through the exhibit. When he climbed on rocks or approached the glass, excited gasps and children’s screeches rang through the zoo.

Pilipili is the first African lion cub born at the zoo in 20 years. It’s not only an exciting moment for the zoo and the city, but an important milestone for preserving the species, according to Mike Murray, the zoo’s curator of mammals

Mary Norkolhas more on Pilipili’s debut here.

From the press box

Your daily question ☕

What are you most looking forward to this summer?

Send us an email at newsletters@suntimes.com and we might feature your answer in the next Afternoon Edition.

Yesterday we asked you: Who has the best tacos in Chicago?

Here’s what some of you said…

“I’ve been eating Raymond’s Tacos since I was 3 years old. My mother found them on her work route and now my grandson is a 4th generation Raymond’s Taco eater. Best in the city!” —Honey Lace

“Atotonilco or El Milagro. Can’t go wrong with any of these places.” —Luis Soto

“Del Seoul Korean Tacos” —Rebecca Cline

“QuesaBirria Jalisco Tacos in McKinley Park.” —Marilyn Rauch Cavicchia

“Taqueria Atotonilco on 56th and Kedzie serves the best asada, chicken, cow tongue, and al pastor tacos in the city. Plus they make some awesome shakes there.” —Brenda Martinez

“Allende’s on Lincoln, just north of Fullerton. In fact, the restaurant is a gold mine. Everything they make is super. Worth it for their guacamole alone.” —Matt Conlon

“Paco’s Tacos! Any of their locations are good but I seem to get fatter tacos at the Archer spot. Go out of my way for them! Now I want some steak tacos, cebolla cilantro and salsa verde.” —Daniel Alejandro Gutierrez

“Los Comales on 18th St, El Milagro on Loomis, the red taco truck on 31st.” —Susy Bonilla

“L’Patron on Fullerton has the best (and only) milanesa de pollo tacos I’ve ever had. They’re head and shoulders the best tacos I’ve ever had. I love that place.” —Jonathan Hoffman

“Pepe Tacos! Tacos are the best! And the guacamole is amazing.” —Brenda D. Allison

“La Plácita in McKinley Park. It’s family-owned and everything is freshly made. Used to be a taco stand in a grocery store but they became so successful they were able to get their own restaurant a few doors down. Have been going there since I was a kid.” —Bella Anna

Thanks for reading the Chicago Afternoon Edition. Got a story you think we missed? Email us here.

The Latest
Predictable tale wins us over with breezy style and some familiar faces.
A shooting left a 14-year-old boy dead and a 13-year-old boy wounded Thursday in Bronzeville on the South Side.
The teen was walking in the 5900 block of South La Salle Street about 2:25 a.m. when someone inside a blue minivan opened fire and continued south.
The victims were leaving a business in the 400 block of South Wells Street about 1:45 a.m. when they began arguing with someone who opened fire with a handgun.
A man and woman were on the sidewalk in the 4600 block of South Ellis Avenue about 10:40 p.m. when someone opened fire, striking them both.