Friday, September 11, 2009

Bellwood Commemorates 9/11!!!

The Village of Bellwood commemorated the tragic events of 9/11/01 today with a ceremony at the Bellwood Village Hall. The ceremony was hosted by Bellwood Mayor Frank Pasquale who was back from surgical procedure, and numerous dignitaries from across Proviso Township attended. The Proviso West High School Band and the Bagpipes of Drums of the Emerald Society were the featured attractions and neither group disappointed the large crowd in attendance. Keynote Speaker Rev. Charles Ingram, Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Bellwood, that the lessons of 9/11/01 should have taught all of us to "Stand Together."

What did you do to commemorate 9/11? What did you learn from that tragic day?


Anonymous said...

Former Flowers' employee: Regional schools office in turmoil

September 11, 2009

An administrator recently fired from Supt. Charles Flowers' office says she can confirm the findings of a SouthtownStar investigation - Flowers' family and friends run the Regional Office of Education and have bullied other employees since the embattled schools chief became the target of a criminal probe.

Flora Esquivel was in her fifth year as transportation coordinator at the Suburban Cook County Regional Office of Education when she said the toxic work environment got to be too much.

"Working there was worse than hell," she said. "During my lunch break, I would sometimes cry. I would feel my heart beat in my throat it got to be so bad."

After the Cook County state's attorney's office raided the Westchester office and Flowers' Maywood home July 1 as part of an ongoing criminal investigation into alleged financial and ethical misconduct first reported in the SouthtownStar, Esquivel said things went from bad to worse.

"His sisters walk around the office calling us 'dirty dogs,' 'dirty rats' and 'snitches' constantly," Esquivel said.

Neither Flowers nor his sisters, who both work at the office, returned calls for comment. Flowers and his inner circle have harassed employees they suspect of talking to reporters and investigators, Esquivel said.

Employees were instructed to tell callers and visitors that Flowers was in a meeting "even if he was at his desk", Esquivel said, and had to sign "no comment" agreements.

"If you went to the bathroom, somebody would follow you to make sure you didn't use your phone," she said.

On Aug. 21, she e-mailed Flowers declining to meet with him because she said constantly felt belittled and harassed by him and immediately left.

"I left in tears," Esquivel said. "I thought I was having a panic attack. I had to pull over on my way home and my husband picked my up and took me to the doctor."

Her doctor increased the dosage of her blood pressure medication. She missed another day of work before she sent an e-mail requesting medical leave.

Flowers, however, already had sent a letter in the mail firing her for "unprofessional and insubordinate behavior," failing to use "proper call-in procedures" and unsatisfactory job performance, according to the letter.

Esquivel believes the real reason he fired her was to make way for Precious Jolly, a Flowers crony.

"He needed to fire me so she could take my job," Esquivel said.

Flowers also was retaliating against Esquivel, she said, because he was upset she had taken a new part-time job at the North Cook Intermediate Service Center, where she works for Robert Ingraffia, Flowers' political rival and predecessor in the Suburban Cook office.

She says Flowers' mismanagement has ruined the good reputation of his employees.

"He's destroying that office," she said.

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The views expressed in these blog posts are those of the author and not of the SouthtownStar.

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Report item as: (required) X Obscenity/vulgarity Hate speech Personal attack Advertising/Spam Copyright/Plagiarism Other Comment: (optional) blackmamba wrote:
Why does this agancy/ office exist? What a waste of money. Get rid of all of them.
9/11/2009 11:25 AM CDT on
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Anonymous said...

I offering my congratulations to Mayor Pasquale on this great event. I just have one suggestion: we all gather there to remember those whose life ended during that vicious attack in New York on 9/11. I don't understand why all of the elected officials and everyone who might feel that they need to be acknowledge, are acknowledge. During a time of mourning, WE ARE ALL EQUAL. If those elected officials are there just for publicity, what a shame.