Chicago mourns Maggie Daley

Diseases and IllnessesHealthMaggie DaleyCancerHuman InterestChicago Cultural CenterWeddings

Chicagoans, family and friends remembered former first lady Maggie Daley during a public funeral service Monday morning at Old St. Patrick's Church, 700 W. Adams, in Chicago.

Mrs. Daley lost her battle with cancer Thursday night at the age of 68. She was first diagnosed with breast cancer back in 2002; since then, the cancer spread to other parts of her body.

Even though dignitarties like First Lady Michelle Obama attended Monday's service, many ordinary people came to Old St. Pat's because Maggie Daley had touched them in some way.

“I have a lot of respect for Maggie Daley she is a terrific role model for all of us cancer survivors and I think she will leave a legacy that will never be forgotten. She`s wonderful woman,” said mourner Marlene Kreutzig.

“I did not know Maggie but I have cancer and I feel I’m going through the same battles that she did so I feel like a kindred spirit here and I just wanted to honor her,” said mourner Deborah Grube.

Former mayor Richard Daley was lucky enough to have spent four decades with Maggie. The rest of us just knew her from afar but still felt her inspiration.

“To watch her go through that pain and still show her grace and elegance and help out our public school children that a lot of other people turn their backs on is truly a blessing,” said mourner and cancer survivor Diondai Brown Whitfield.

Richard Daley had recently cleared his public schedule due to his wife's declining health; and on November 17th, the Daleys celebrated the wedding of their daughter Elizabeth, in a ceremony that was moved up from New Year's Day so Mrs. Daley could attend. "Lally" Daley wore mother's wedding gown that day.

Maggie Daley contributed to many civic programs during her time as first lady, including the one that eventually evolved into After School Matters, which helps Chicago teens develop life and career skills.

She was also instrumental in convincing her husband not to tear down the Chicago Cultural Center when the city's main public library moved out.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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Diseases and IllnessesHealthMaggie DaleyCancerHuman InterestChicago Cultural CenterWeddings