Chicago Sun-Times Latest news from the Chicago Sun-Times Online en-us (Editor) Newspapers Chicago Sun-Times 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ Edward Claussen, who moved pickles to groceries’ refrigerated aisle, dead at 85 ]]> Lead story image

Edward Claussen, a former Claussen Pickles chief executive, is dead at 85. He shifted the key product of the business that his great-grandfather started from store shelves to the refrigerated aisle, a move that strengthened the company’s market share. ]]> Mon, 14 Apr 2014 09:22:14 -0500 <![CDATA[ One of world’s top Syria historians ]]>

BEIRUT — Patrick Seale, a veteran journalist and author on Middle Eastern affairs as well as one of the world’s leading historians on Syria, has died in London after a battle with cancer, according to family and friends. He was 83. An accomplished reporter, writer and literary agent, Mr. Seale was diagnosed with brain cancer in the summer of 2013. He died Friday in London, surrounded by family. Mr. Seale is best known for his authoritative biography of the late Syrian President Hafez Assad, “Assad of Syria: The Struggle for the Middle East.” Published in 1988, the book is considered … ]]> Tue, 15 Apr 2014 02:21:56 -0500 <![CDATA[ Tony-winning deaf actress ]]> Lead story image

Phyllis Frelich, a Tony Award-winning deaf actress who starred in the Broadway version of “Children of a Lesser God,” has died. She was 70. Her husband, Robert Steinberg, said Ms. Frelich died Thursday at their home in Temple City, Calif. She suffered from a rare degenerative neurological disease called progressive supranuclear palsy, or PSP, for which there are no treatments, he said. “She was extraordinary, the finest sign language actress there ever was,” he said. “We were married for 46 years. I would have been happy with 46 more.” A native of Devils Lake, N.D., Ms. Frelich graduated from the … ]]> Tue, 15 Apr 2014 02:21:41 -0500 <![CDATA[ Margaret Herguth, journalist and author, dies at 79 ]]> Lead story image

Margaret Herguth was a mother, journalist and longtime resident of Wilmette whose life, in many ways, revolved around the written word. As a grandmother, she authored “How Do You Hug a Giraffe?” a children’s book that she wrote and her daughter, Jeni, illustrated. Years earlier, she met her husband when they both worked at the Chicago Daily News. “Bob Eulenberg, a rewrite guy, thought we would be ideal for each other,” recalled her husband, Robert J. Herguth. “So he invited us both to lunch and we kind of both wondered why we were there, and after that, things kind of … ]]> Mon, 14 Apr 2014 02:20:15 -0500 <![CDATA[ One of the last Native American code talkers ]]>

OKLAHOMA CITY — Edmond Harjo, one of the last surviving members of a group of American Indians who used their Native languages to outmaneuver the enemy during World Wars I and II, died last week in Oklahoma. He was 96. Mr. Harjo died March 31 at Mercy Hospital in Ada, Okla., according to the Swearingen Funeral Home. Mr. Harjo’s nephew, Richard Harjo, said his uncle had a heart attack. Mr. Harjo, a member of the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma, traveled to Washington, D.C., last November to take part in a ceremony where congressional leaders bestowed the Congressional Gold Medal, its … ]]> Fri, 11 Apr 2014 02:25:45 -0500 <![CDATA[ Father of Mich. sextuplets ]]>

HOLLAND, Mich. — The 39-year-old father of Michigan’s first surviving set of sextuplets suffered a heart attack and died after setting up a trampoline for his children, a relative said. Ben Van Houten died Wednesday night, said Sue Herweyer of Dykstra Life Story Funeral Homes in Holland. Mr. Van Houten lived in the Holland area in western Michigan. In 2004, his wife, Amy, gave birth to six children over three days at a Grand Rapids hospital. They’re now 10 years old, and have a 7-year-old sister. “Just to know Ben for even one day would be a blessing,” father-in-law Calvin … ]]> Fri, 11 Apr 2014 02:25:35 -0500 <![CDATA[ 8-year-old girl befriended by hoops star dies ]]> Lead story image

DETROIT — When Michigan State was fighting to stay afloat despite a succession of injuries to key players, Lacey Holsworth was there. When the team rebounded to win the Big Ten tournament, the 8-year-old from St. Johns, Mich., was there. And as the cold-shooting Spartans bowed out of the NCAA tournament at the hands of eventual champion Connecticut one win short of the Final Four, she was there. Now, Lacey is gone. The little girl affectionately known as “Princess Lacey” finally succumbed to the cancer that she battled since 2011. Her father, Matt Holsworth, said Lacey died at their home … ]]> Fri, 11 Apr 2014 02:25:26 -0500 <![CDATA[ Glenbrook South teacher Jeff Yordy, dead at 55, led award-winning horticulture teams ]]> Lead story image

At a north suburban high school known for academics, Jeff Yordy made his mark teaching horticulture. Mr. Yordy, who died March 29 at age 55 following heart surgery, started teaching at Glenbrook South High School in Glenview in 1984, and the school horticulture team he coached won the state championship for an astounding 22 years of his tenure there. ]]> Wed, 09 Apr 2014 10:50:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ As a director at WMAQ-Channel 5 news, Alison Ebert was calm voice in ears of anchors, reporters ]]> Lead story image

Ms. Ebert won multiple Emmys during the 30 years she worked at WMAQ-Channel 5, rising to become director of the noon and 5 p.m. newscasts. Part of the directing team for major events including the Chicago Marathon and Chicago Auto Show, she was also an unflappable presence on high-pressure election nights, when she always wore an American flag pin. ]]> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 16:47:43 -0500 <![CDATA[ Comic appeared in final episode of ‘Seinfeld’ ]]> Lead story image

PITTSBURGH — John Pinette, the chubby stand-up comedian who portrayed a hapless carjacking victim in the final episode of “Seinfeld,” has died. He was 50. Mr. Pinette died of natural causes Saturday at a hotel in Pittsburgh, the Allegheny County medical examiner’s office said Sunday evening. Mr. Pinette’s agent confirmed his death. The portly Mr. Pinette was a self-deprecating presence on stage, frequently discussing his weight on stand-up specials “Show Me the Buffett,” “I’m Starvin’!” and “Still Hungry.” Mr. Pinette had been working on another stand-up project when he died, his agent, Nick Nuciforo, said. “He should be celebrated for … ]]> Tue, 08 Apr 2014 02:17:14 -0500 <![CDATA[ Frank Mauro Gesualdo, WWII vet who founded car dealerships, dies at 90 ]]> Lead story image

During World War II, Frank Gesualdo survived 72 hours awaiting rescue in the waters of the Pacific Ocean after his aircraft carrier, the USS Hornet, was battered by Japanese bombs in the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands. When he returned home to Chicago, he founded multiple companies connected to the automotive industry: a collection agency, a repossession business and a chain of car dealerships that has grown to 24 dealerships operated by his children in Illinois, Wisconsin and Indiana. ]]> Tue, 08 Apr 2014 02:17:04 -0500 <![CDATA[ Otis McDonald, lead plaintiff in U.S. Supreme Court case tossing city’s handgun ban, dies at 80 ]]> Lead story image

Otis McDonald, the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit that prompted the U.S. Supreme Court decision that forced Chicago to abandon its 28-year ban on handguns, has died at 80, a family spokesman said Sunday. Fred Jones said his uncle died on Friday while in hospice care after a long battle with cancer. Mr. McDonald, an unassuming retired maintenance engineer, became a hero to the pro-gun movement, in large part because of his life story and the simple but eloquent way he expressed his desire to have a handgun to protect himself and his family from the gun-toting drug dealers who … ]]> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 11:00:51 -0500 <![CDATA[ Writer-environmentalist Peter Matthiessen dead at 86 ]]> Lead story image

Peter Matthiessen, a rich man’s son who spurned a life of leisure and embarked on extraordinary physical and spiritual quests while producing such acclaimed books as “The Snow Leopard” and “At Play in the Fields of the Lord,” died Saturday. He was 86. Matthiessen, who had been diagnosed with leukemia, was ill “for some months” and died at a hospital near his home on Long Island, N.Y. ]]> Sat, 05 Apr 2014 23:42:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ Julie Brady, 51, ‘hard-working grass roots’ political worker, ‘beautiful soul’ ]]> Lead story image

Julie Brady shunned the limelight, even though she often belonged in it. The wife of former Illinois GOP Party Chairman Pat Brady liked to work behind the scenes. During U.S. Sen. John McCain’s presidential campaign she helped lead a grassroots effort to put his name on the ballot in Illinois. On Friday, Mrs. Brady died following a battle with ovarian cancer. She was 51. She also leaves behind four children, Maeve, 17; Kelly, 16; Patrick, 14 and Grace, 13. Mrs. and Mr. Brady first met when they worked as federal prosecutors in San Diego. Pat Brady recalls their first meeting … ]]> Sun, 06 Apr 2014 02:30:38 -0500 <![CDATA[ Anja Niedringhaus, 48, fearless photojournalist slain in Afghanistan attack ]]> Lead story image

Anja Niedringhaus faced down some of the world’s greatest dangers and had one of the world’s loudest and most infectious laughs. She photographed dying and death, and embraced humanity and life. She gave herself to the subjects of her lens, and gave her talents to the world, with images of wars’ unwitting victims in Afghanistan, Iraq, Bosnia and beyond. Shot to death by an Afghan policeman Friday, Ms. Niedringhaus leaves behind a broad body of work — from battlefields to sports fields — that won awards and broke hearts. She trained her camera on children caught between the front lines, … ]]> Sat, 05 Apr 2014 02:07:10 -0500 <![CDATA[ Held in Japanese-American internment camp, fought for U.S. as part of famed 442nd Army combat team ]]> Lead story image

Omar Kaihatsu, who died Feb. 13 at Glenview Terrace nursing center in Glenview at 88, was a gifted boxer who also played for the football team at Hollywood High School in southern California. Mr. Kaihatsu’s family was sent to internment camps during World War II, then he joined the Army’s 442nd Regimental Combat Team, Japanese Americans who proved their patriotism by becoming some of the most highly decorated soldiers of the war. After moving to Chicago, he ran his own insurance business in Uptown and organized showings of Japanese films at Francis W. Parker School. ]]> Thu, 03 Apr 2014 12:11:53 -0500