Good afternoon. Here’s the latest news you need to know in Chicago. This is an approximately 5 minute read that will educate you on today’s biggest stories.
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Chicago home after escaping war in Ukraine: ‘I’m incredibly lucky’
Last week, Olga Tsoi boarded a plane in Poland to fly back to Chicago after escaping Ukraine.
And she had this heartbreaking feeling that she had failed in her mission.
She had not come to Poland by choice. Home for a visit to her native Ukraine, she had fled when Russian forces invaded in February.
After arriving in Poland with her mother, Tsoi spent 90 days there, working in soup kitchens and delivering bags of groceries to families in need. She helped find accommodation for the families by putting them up in hotels and did her best to help the displaced people come up with a plan of action, for example where they could relocate.
She did all of this with her mother, Oksana Tsoi, by her side – and Olga promised she would bring her back to the United States with her. But the Rogers Park resident quickly realized that was untenable.
“In my head, I thought – because Poland immediately opened its borders to Ukrainians – I thought all countries would be the same,” said Olga Tsoi. “I figured I was just going to bring my mom back to the States and, well, that’s not how it works.”
It was not until April 25 that the United States launched its program to accommodate up to 100,000 Ukrainian refugees — two months after the invasion.
“We kept waiting, waiting, waiting, and just as the United States said we could do some sort of sponsorship, we decided to bring my mother to Canada,” Tsoi said. “I’m moving my mother to Canada because, firstly, it was faster, and if she came to the United States, there were more restrictions, like she could only stay for two years and could not return to Ukraine. .”
So she returned to Chicago on her own after exhausting the time she had been allowed to stay in Europe as an American resident. The return to Chicago was somewhat bittersweet.
Manny Ramos opens up about Olga and Oksana Tsoi’s escape from Ukraine and what’s next for the family.
More news you need
- Mayor Lori Lightfoot chose Ald’s sister to retire today. Michael Scott Jr. to replace his brother on the city council despite the emergence of the nepotism that has long dominated Chicago politics. Monique Scott will replace her younger brother as alderman representing the city’s 24th arrondissement.
- Two rivals of Democratic House primary candidate Jonathan Jackson today slammed him for failing to file required personal financial information and lamented the $500,065 PAC of a crypto billionaire spent on the elect. Aldus. Pat Dowell and State Senator Jaqueline Collins called out Jackson in separate statements, with the former saying voters need to know “how he makes his money.”
- In her farewell message to the city before she leaves to become president of Spellman College in Atlanta, Dr. Helene Gayle says “big programs” are needed to close Chicago’s growing wealth gap. Gayle, CEO of the Chicago Community Trust for five years, spoke to our Fran Spielman about the city’s challenges before she left to face a new one.
- John “Moon” Mullin, a longtime sportswriter who covered the Bears for decades, died Sunday at age 74. Mullin, a staple of local sports media, “this month set local records for hospital visitors as he battled the ravages of stage IV pancreatic cancer,” writes Patrick Finley.
- Do we really need another film about the man, the myth and the legend that was Elvis Presley? Richard Roeper says in a rave review that “Elvis” answers that question with “a resounding YES” thanks in part to “a smoldering star performance from Austin Butler as the title character.”
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Chicago Tool Library: Building Community, One Project at a Time
Behind a blue door and up a loading dock on the south side, there is a small library.
He has no books. Instead there are shelves and shelves of tools: Saws, sewing machines., laminators. Even the ice cream makers.
The sign at the entrance says “Chicago Tool Library”.
It’s a place where Chicagoans can borrow tools for all kinds of projects or jobs rather than having to buy them, said Tessa Vierk, co-founder and executive director.
The nonprofit was launched in August 2019 and in just under three years has grown from 160 to nearly 3,000 members. People come from all over the city, making up about 98% of Chicago’s zip codes, Vierk said.
“We have teachers planting gardens for their classes. We have several small businesses that use our tools to do renovations or to do landscaping outside of their restaurant or store,” Vierk said. “We have people using our tools to make money, to do odd jobs.”
During the pandemic, people have borrowed pasta machines and ice cream makers for their families, Vierk said. They borrowed telescopes for their children and built custom home offices, she said.
Cadence Quaranta says more about how the nonprofit aims to be more than just tools.
From the press gallery
Your daily question☕
If you could watch a Hollywood biopic about any Chicagoan, who would it be? Why?
Email us at [email protected] and we might feature your response in the next afternoon edition.
On Friday, we asked you: what does the June 19 holiday mean to you? Tell us why. Here’s what some of you said…
“The idea of Juneteenth is that we are not celebrating the freedom of some of us, but the freedom of all of us.” —Jamon Jordan
“The real story of this country. Not folklore and lies of closed minds. —Robert Ward
“That we’ve had another symbolic day and no plans for real change when it comes to what’s really hurting our communities of color.” — Frank DIllingham
“To me, it is truly a reflection of the unique contributions of my ancestors to humanity, particularly in the United States of America. A reflection on their pain then…and the sacrifices they made. honor now through this reflection keeping their memory alive for generations to come. —Edward Glass Boone
“That means the Pro Confederate Flag folks are hitting the air right now.” —Tiffany Overton
“We can celebrate freedom from slavery, while raising awareness of human rights issues in the world today.” — Ruben Santos Claveria
“It reminds me, among other things, that I was taught history from a very ‘white’ point of view. We have a long way to go… I’m glad my eyes opened. —Marc Bergadon
“It’s recognition of some of the suffering my people have endured.” —Shajuanta Johnson
“It is a day of respite and jubilation as the remnant of the people were free to seek the promise of life God has given us all of a life that has humbled both victims and abusers. We can do better and this idea deserves the attention of everyone in the country.Whenever we look for our best angels, we all raise. — Lake Frances
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