Suffredin- An Advocate for All of Us  
 

Accountability
Forest Preserves
Public Safety
Cook County Budget
Forest Pres. Budget
Property Tax Appeal
Health & Hospitals
Land Bank Authority
Policy Resolutions
Unsung Heroine

 

   
 
   
   
 
   
     
  Office phone numbers:  
   
 
 

The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.

   
 

Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.

   
  Cook County is the second most populous county in the nation. It is the 19th largest government in the U.S.
   
     
     
     



County commissioner’s plan: Bury indigent at Oak Forest Hospital site

Thursday, May 10, 2012
Chicago Sun-Times
by SUSAN DEMAR LAFFERTY

A five-acre site at the former Oak Forest Hospital in the south suburbs should be set aside for a county cemetery for indigent burials, according to a plan proposed Thursday by Cook County Commissioner John Fritchey (D-Chicago).

By resuming its own cemetery operations, the county could save $180 million and meet its needs for the next 100 years, Fritchey estimated.

He said he’ll ask the county board to direct the sheriff, medical examiner and forest preserve district to develop a plan to open a new cemetery by January, said Bridget Luehrsen, Fritchey’s spokeswoman.

The new cemetery would be immediately west of a former county cemetery, where nearly 91,000 bodies were buried from 1911 to 1971. The land at the southeast corner of 159th Street and Cicero Avenue is owned and would continue to be owned by the forest preserve district, Luehrsen said.

Fritchey’s plan would allow the county to bury its indigent, unclaimed and unknown bodies with “greater oversight, reverence and respect,” Fritchey said.

His plan will be introduced at Monday’s county board meeting, Luehrsen said.

After witnessing problems pertaining to haphazard burials at Burr Oak Cemetery and seeing the burials at Homewood Memorial Gardens, Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart pushed for reforms. He has endorsed Fritchey’s plan and proposed that county jail inmates make the caskets and assist with burials.

The county now pays $150,000 yearly to Homewood Memorial Gardens, which has been handling burials for the county since 1980.

But new burial standards, approved by the county a year ago, are expected to increase those costs significantly, Luehrsen said.

Bodies were being stacked eight high in a man-made hill, and people were being placed in coffins with unidentified limbs and non-human debris, sheriff’s investigations revealed.

Fritchey said the current process does not properly identify these individuals.

Since 1983, 401 unidentified bodies were buried at Homewood Memorial Gardens, but data on only 86 has been entered into the National Crime Information Center database due to a lack of proper documentation, he said. This hinders police in solving crimes, he said.

The new standards require separate burial areas for unknown persons, babies and fetuses; visible markers; maintaining records that include names when known, gender, race and identifying characteristics of the dead; date and location of burial; and entering that data in the Cemetery Oversight Database within 10 days.

It prohibits multiple bodies in one grave space unless they are in containers, with no more than three coffins in one grave.



Recent Headlines

Home sales plummet in June in 12th straight down month
Tuesday, July 23, 2019
Crain's Chicago Business

What Is The Best Time To Appeal A Cook County Property Tax Assessment?
Monday, July 22, 2019
CBS Chicago

Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas on unclaimed property tax exemptions: ” Most seniors didn’t know that they could get it.”
Friday, July 19, 2019
WGN Chicago

Top Forest Preserve cop quits after burying ticket of county pol’s pal who asked ‘Do you know who I am?’
Friday, July 19, 2019
Chicago Tribune

EDITORIAL: ‘Do you know who I am?’ Not yet, but we sure know your type
Friday, July 19, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County Commissioner Luis Arroyo says he got a friend’s parking ticket voided
Friday, July 19, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

The story behind those commercial assessment hikes everyone's mad about
Friday, July 19, 2019
Crain's Chicago Business

Chicago-Area Cooling Centers Offer Residents Chance to Beat the Heat
Thursday, July 18, 2019
NBC 5 Chicago

Editorial: ‘Do you know who I am?’ Not yet, but the people of Cook County deserve to find out.
Thursday, July 18, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Top Forest Preserve cop quits after burying ticket of county pol’s pal who asked ‘Do you know who I am?
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Chicago’s top cop ‘must stop misleading the public’ about violence, Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle says in heated letter to Mayor Lori Lightfoot
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
Chicago Tribune

‘Do you know who I am?’ Investigators say Cook County commissioner pressed cops to scrap ally’s $250 parking ticket
Tuesday, July 16, 2019
Chicago Tribune

IG: Cook County needs revamp on sexual harassment outside of work following allegations against Preckwinkle ex-chief of staff
Tuesday, July 16, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Higher Assessments Hit North Suburban Commercial Property Owners
Thursday, July 11, 2019
Evanston Patch

How did an inmate get a loaded gun into Cook County Jail?
Thursday, July 11, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Check exemptions, file an appeal: What you can do to fight your Cook County property tax bill
Thursday, July 11, 2019
WGN Chicago

’A lack of mental health services has plagued Chicago for decades’: Holy Cross Hospital expanding to fill that void on the Southwest Side
Wednesday, July 10, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Construction Begins on New Cook County Health Center
Wednesday, July 10, 2019
Daily Herald

How To Appeal Your Cook County Property Tax Assessment
Wednesday, July 10, 2019
CBS Chicago

County Commission Hopes to Increase 2020 Census Participation
Wednesday, July 10, 2019
WTTW News

all news items

Paid for by Larry Suffredin and not at taxpayer expense. A Haymarket Production.
^ TOP