Bizarre criticism of Mayor Daley in aftermath of blizzard, with reporters asking where he and his wife Maggie are
This is upsetting for anyone who’s even remotely paid attention to Maggie Daley’s battle with cancer, because both she and her husband, Mayor Daley, are being criticized for not being more visible as Chicago was battered by the “Great Blizzard of 2011″.
First off, Chicago really mobilized in the aftermath of this storm.
You’ve seen photos of 900 cars stopped dead on Lakeshore Drive, but you might not realize that this truly was an act of God and that the City did not drop the ball. A series of accidents, including one with a bus, triggered a huge bottleneck of cars at 800pm or so the night of the blizzard, with the worst of the storm hitting at 9pm. It was, in fact, a perfect storm of bad luck, right at the worst possible moment, on a stretch of highway that shoulders the lake and gets whalloped by ice and snow.
There is nothing the City could have done to stop this. But, Chicago emergency responders, police, and sanitation workers were right on top of it, working hard to remedy the situation with all available resources.
The next morning, once the snow stopped, the City was on the air with press conferences explaining what was going on, giving citizens EXCELLENT directions for how to cope with situations, and mobilizing every able-bodied city worker to get things back to normal.
It was the polar opposite of what happened in New York City during the Christmas snow storm in which city workers deliberately slacked off on the job in protest of union pay cuts.
Mayor Daley was not at the press conference the morning after the blizzard, but his entire emergency management team was.
It’s not stated in any articles, but more likely than not Mayor Daley was with his wife Maggie, who is incredibly ill. The two of them attended the China state dinner last month and Mrs. Daley was forced to use a walker. She still had the same amazing, loving smile we’re used to from her, but she was frail and Mayor Daley had to hold her arm throughout the evening to give her balance.
It’s probably the last big public event we’ll see this WONDERFUL woman at. It was probably her last trip to the White House, which is probably why she and the Mayor attended the event.
If you’ve ever lived in Chicago while Maggie Daley has been our First Lady, you can appreciate what I’m about to say, because it’s so true. There just isn’t anyone out there like Maggie Daley. She’s remarkable, and so kind, and seeing her in such poor health, so frail, is heartbreaking. I am so glad she got to attend one last big function at the White House, and got to go to one last gala, because this woman has given so much to the City of Chicago and its citizens. She made this city beautiful, gave it a creative spark, and made sure every social gathering, festival, and public event was top-notch.
When I used to do special projects for the City as a freelance event producer, I had the joy of hosting Maggie Daley on several occasions, and she gave her all to whatever cause was on her schedule that day. She didn’t leave an event before she thanked every last person there for coming, including all of the staff.
If Mayor and Maggie Daley are not attending something important, it’s because there’s an emergency or other nightmare preventing their attendance. The two of them love Chicago and its people with all their hearts…and say what you want about some of Mayor Daley’s tactics, and about his machine, but give them that.
Maggie Daley’s illness is the reason Mayor Daley didn’t seek a second term.
I honestly believe her illness is why the Mayor was not front and center for the TV cameras in this blizzard. He was running the City like he always does, with a team of experts who clearly knew what they were doing, but he was not at the microphones for a reason.
It’s most likely Maggie’s health…and if it’s that bad, then I hope you say a little prayer for her.
She’s a wonderful woman whom Chicago’s going to miss a great deal.
That’s double for any of us who ever had the honor and pleasure of ever working with her up close on anything.
© 2011, Kevin DuJan. All rights reserved.
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