The 15th District Police Department held its annual senior Thanksgiving Dinner last Thursday at the Elmcrest Banquet Hall, 7370 W. Grand Ave., in Elmwood Park.
The room was decorated and the seniors dressed to the nines. The purpose of this annual dinner is to acknowledge and thank the seniors of the Austin community for their volunteerism and assistance to the district. The Mistress of Ceremonies this year was Officer Wilner Jackson, chairperson. The blessing was given by Rev. Dwight Gunn, with entertainment provided by the Department on Aging-senior clowns performed several skits that brought laughter from the audience-with music from the past by the many voices of “Sir Dobyne,” one of the lead singers of the Artistics singing group. When Mr.Dobyne did his rendition of hit songs like “Mustang Sally,” “Do You Like Good Music?” and “Further On Up The Road,” it prompted many of the seniors to leave their seats and “cut a rug of their own.”
A special award was presented to Sister House, a transition house on the 800 block of Leamington, which provides housing for women in transition, resulting from drug addiction, alcoholism, parolees or homelessness. These young women usually come out and assist in serving the seniors. However, this year they were treated to a sit-down Thanksgiving dinner and recognized for their kindness.
In the absence of Commander Al Wysinger, Sgt. Glenn White represented the 15th and made the following comments:
“It’s an outstanding turnout in which we pay homage to our senior citizens. This is the third annual year celebrating our seniors in the district for all the work they do for us-not only for the 15th District but for the country-and this is our way of celebrating our seniors.
“The seniors were selected by our senior advisory council. This is set up by officers Beverly Rogers and Cassandra Norman. They gather the names through some of the subcommittees that some of the seniors work on throughout the year. They have fundraisers throughout the year and help us with different events.
“In closing, I would like to wish all of our seniors here and those who were unable to attend, and the Austin community, a very prosperous Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday season.”
The event concluded with a total of 200 meals being served and all of the seniors departed and said they had a great time and look forward to next year. Sgt. White and Cmdr. Wysinger extended special thanks to the staff, committee chairs and Alderman Isaac Carothers, Alderman Emma Mitts, HCIA, Healthcare Interactions, Citibank-River Forest Branch, and the staff of the Elmcrest Banquet Hall.