Afternoon Edition: June 2, 2022

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

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Dakotah Earley at Illinois Masonic Medical Center on Wednesday.

Dakotah Earley at Illinois Masonic Medical Center yesterday.

Joy Dobbs/Twitter

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 sunny with a high near 75 degrees. Tonight will be mostly clear with a low around 57. Tomorrow will be sunny with a high near 78.

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Afternoon Edition
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Top story

Lincoln Park shooting victim leaves ICU. ‘Praise God,’ mother says

A man who was shot on the street in Lincoln Park while being robbed of his cellphone has left intensive care and continues to improve.

“He’s doing great but there’s still hurdles to jump,” his mother Joy Dobbs said today.

Dakotah Earley left the ICU at Illinois Masonic Medical Center on Wednesday and will no longer need a nurse every hour, Dobbs said. He’s no longer on dialysis, but his jaw will remain wired shut for three more weeks, she said.

“Praise God,” Dobbs wrote on Twitter announcing the news.

Earley, who turned 24 last week, was shot on May 6 as he struggled with a gunman who knocked him down and fired at least three times.

Earley has had part of his leg amputated. Last week, he was still unable to speak and possibly faced a third surgery to amputate his leg further, his mother said, but that wasn’t necessary. He also had surgery to close up his abdomen.

Earley’s condition continues to improve, she said. Last weekend, Dobbs said her son was awake and writing a wish list.

“He wants some Ollie pop, some kombucha. Learn to drive (finally) and his own place” with no roommates, Dobbs tweeted. Later that day, he was able to sit up and hug her, she said.

Dobbs spoke publicly about her son last week and thanked the person who tended to her son while waiting for an ambulance to arrive. A 19-year-old has been charged in the attack on Earley and in four other armed robberies on the North Side.

David Struetthas more on Earley’s journey here.

More news you need

  1. A man with an arrest record for gun crimes is suspected of shooting and seriously wounding a Chicago police officer in Englewood yesterday evening, authorities said. The 28-year-old man, who remained at large at the time of publishing, was identified in a police alert.
  2. A Chicago man who recently traveled to Europe may be the first person diagnosed with monkeypox in Illinois, state and city health officials said today. Monkeypox is a rare but potentially serious virus that has been spotted in other states and across Europe in recent months.
  3. Mayor Lori Lightfoot today sloughed off the growing field of challengers lining up to deny her a second term and said she will officially join the fray next week. “Stay tuned. Soon. Soon is shrinking. As in next week,” the mayor said.
  4. The feds have charged two Illinois women with joining the riot at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, including one who they said appeared to be talking on a handheld radio during the breach, records show. The case against Trudy Castle and Kimberly DiFrancesco brings the number of known Illinoisans charged in the breach to 30.
  5. Voters in suburban Cook County will be casting their ballots in upcoming elections with the help of new devices that aim to streamline check-in at the polls. Cook County Clerk Karen Yarbrough announced the purchase of the 4,500 new e-poll devices that will be used in the June 28 primary election.
  6. With the city and surrounding areas considered at high risk for the transmission of COVID-19, Jewel-Osco is now asking employees to wear masks. Asked by the Sun-Times to clarify whether “requesting” means employees are now required to wear masks, Jewel-Osco spokeswoman Mary Frances Trucco didn’t respond.
  7. Northwestern Medicine announced plans to bring a new $100 million advanced outpatient care center to Bronzeville that will be developed on a large stretch of vacant land on the 4800 block of South Cottage Grove Avenue. The proposed 120,000-square-foot facility still needs to clear some regulatory hurdles but it eases fears of a health care desert some had when Mercy Hospital sold its operations in Bronzeville last year.
  8. Chicago’s vibrant music scene is amping up for a jam-packed summer with sounds from just about every genre under the sun. We’ve listed some of the summer’s must-see music, from jazz to jam bands and everything in between.
  9. Lastly, owners of the Sun-Times announced today that Jennifer Kho, former managing editor of HuffPost and Guardian US, has been named the paper’s executive editor. She will be the first woman and the first person of color to lead our newsroom.
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A bright one

Hair spray, Cinderella dresses and sleepless nights of anticipation mark prom at CPS special needs high school

Lanaudia Holder, tiara atop a fresh do, practiced her queen’s wave. Hand vertical, slight twist from the wrist.

“This is my date,” she beamed, squeezing the arm of Dartanyun Griggs, who donned a tuxedo and pink bow tie.

It was prom. And the pair stood peacefully in a chaotic hallway of Northside Learning Center High School as classmates, ranging in age from 14 to 22, all with significant intellectual disabilities, got spiffed up before boarding a bus to a nearby banquet center.

All students at Northside, 3730 W. Bryn Mawr Ave., have mild to severe intellectual disabilities or autism and nearly half speak with the assistance of an electronic aide or use sign language, Assistant Principal Elizabeth Mourtokokis said.

merlin_106146732.jpg

Jascellyn Merino, 20, and Milek Williams, 21, students at Northside Learning Center, pose for pictures during prom at Biagio Events and Catering in the Portage Park neighborhood, yesterday morning.

Pat Nabong/Sun-Times

The school, which is part of Chicago Public Schools, teaches students life skills to prepare them to live as independently as possible.

And all of the school’s 269 students get to go to prom. Dates were not required, but many mustered the courage to ask. The event was on hold during the pandemic, so the excitement this year was multiplied, Mourtokokis said,

For Yaritzel Zavala, 22, the day was a tad bittersweet.

“This is really emotional for me because it will be the last day I will be here at this school,” she said. “We get to be in our comfort zone here. Everybody in this whole school, we consider each other family. And we have to support each other as we grow up.

Mitch Dudekhas more on the joyful event here.

From the press box

Your daily question ☕

How can you tell if someone is from Chicago?

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

Yesterday we asked you: What are you most looking forward to this summer?

Here’s what some of you said…

“Chicago street festivals! And the beach.” —Nyahne Bergeron

“Outdoor music concerts and family and friend BBQs.” —Rhonda Rowe-Skolnik

“Spending the day walking through Chicago Botanic Gardens.” —Carmie Daugird Callobre

“The elote man and cocquito!” —Anthony Garcia

“Getting out and walking. Possibly playing softball.”— Rachel Schild

“Concerts, shows, walking in the park, Navy Pier. Going down to the River Walk. And of course, BBQs with family and friends.” —Mary Katrina Grant

“Spending time with my parents and grandkids.” — Maria Q. Uniquemexi

“Dining at outdoor restaurants.” —Ernestine Bettini

“My gardens getting ready to harvest.” — Daryl Hillicoss

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

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