Commentary, Park Forest

On the Passing of Frank Wessely


Park Forest, IL—(ENEWSPF)— I was a bit late announcing our new issue of eNews Park Forest today.  Early this morning I received a phone call from Mrs. Lynn Wessely, wife of Park Forest resident Frank Wessely, saying that she was at the hospital with Frank.  Unable to wake him this morning, she began administering CPR to her husband as her daughter called paramedics.

Words cannot express how touched I was when Mrs. Wessely called the first time this morning, “You were his best friend!”  The second call came all too soon, “Franks gone,” she said, and asked if I would join her, her daughter and a friend at the hospital.

He was 66 years old. 

Frank was quite the activist.  He appeared before the Village board on numerous occasions, on Mondays and at Saturday Rules meetings, advocating for the Eastgate neighborhood and other areas around town.  He cared deeply, and always let you know exactly where you stood with him.  Frank was the kind of guy you were glad to have on your side.  He attended neighborhood meetings, participated in the Neighborhood Watch program, and was truly passionate about making Park Forest a better place for all. And Frank could be very direct and sometimes critical of the Park Forest Police Department. This morning, however, Mrs. Wessely especially wanted me to call Police Chief Tom Fleming, and let him know of Frank's death. "He always liked Tom," she said.

He was also involved in his church choir at Hope Lutheran in Park Forest.  Mrs. Wessely commented several times this morning how he much loved the church.  Pastor Michael Heggen shared that Frank had told him just last week that he should not worry, “Ash Wednesday is covered,” as Frank had helped organize events for the upcoming holy day.

Frank was an avid reader and supporter of eNews Park Forest.  He gave us several compliments, and just this past Friday sent an email expressing his appreciation for our story on the recent fire and tragedy on Monee Road:

Very good article on the fire, suicide, on Monee Road. and I think a lot of people will thank you for the hints or clues that may help people deal with their problems.


You bet, buddy.  And thank you.

As much as I counted Frank a friend and strong supporter of eNews Park Forest, I learned this morning how much all of the people he met with in Park Forest meant to Frank.  We all hope to make a difference in people's lives.  I’m grateful for one who made a difference in ours.

Our thoughts and prayers at eNews Park Forest are with the family.

The wake will be Thursday, February 22, from 3:00 – 9:00 p.m. at Lain-Sullivan Funeral Home, 50 Westwood Drive, Park Forest.  The funeral will be Friday at 11:00 a.m. at Hope Lutheran Church, 424 Indianwood Blvd., Park Forest.