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Rahm Working with Daleys on Maggie Daley Tribute

By Chuck Sudo in News on Nov 30, 2011 3:45PM

Former Chicago First Lady Maggie Daley was laid to rest Monday and Mayor Rahm Emanuel is considering a lasting tribute to her contributions to Chicago's cultural fabric. Both the Tribune and the Sun-Times report Emanuel is consulting with the Daley family on the tribute. Renaming the Chicago Cultural Center is a possibility but, when asked, Emanuel played vague.

“I, too, am thinking of something, but it’s not for me to do, it’s for me to do with the family,” Emanuel said when asked about the Cultural Center. “I do it in a partnership with them to somehow give a voice to a life’s work on behalf of the children and on behalf of the city, and the depth of her affection for the city and the people that make it up.”

The Daley family has a long history with the Cultural Center. Daley family matriarch Eleanor "Sis" Daley saved the former central library from demolition at the hands of her husband, Richard J. Daley. Later, Maggie Daley helped raise money to restore and christen the Cultural Center and even kept an office in the building.

Another option for a lasting tribute would be Northerly Island. Maggie Daley was influential in former Mayor Richard M. Daley's midnight destruction of Meigs Field's runways and the island's subsequent transformation into a park. Plans were unveiled last year to turn Northerly Island into a nature preserve, complete with an outdoor hiking shelter, man-made reefs for snorkelers and divers, and a green outdoor concert pavilion to replace Charter One Pavilion.