Tylenol contributor John Rooney, who battled ALS, has died – Chicago Sun
July 1, 2016 - als
John Rooney, a longtime Chicago contributor who won accolades for his coverage of authorised affairs and the 1982 Tylenol killings, and afterwards led his family and friends with grace, amusement and acceptance when he was diagnosed with amyotrophic parallel sclerosis, died Thursday morning of ALS, also famous as Lou Gehrig’s disease.
Mr. Rooney, 56, a Beverly proprietor whose mom and aunt also died of a incorrigible disease, suspected he had it when he interviewed former Illinois state Comptroller Dawn Clark Netsch in 2013, usually days before her genocide from ALS, yet he didn’t tell her that.
The 27-year contributor for a Chicago Daily Law Bulletin — and, before that, a aged City News Bureau of Chicago — continued to work even as a illness enervated his physique and influenced his speech. As Mr. Rooney’s voice began to fail, “He said, ‘I adore you,’ ” pronounced a friend, Pat Milhizer. “He knew he didn’t have too many difference left, and he wanted to make them count.”
In a Law Bulletin essay shortly after his diagnosis, Mr. Rooney wrote, “I won’t concede ALS to conclude me. At age 54, we rest on my faith, along with clever support from family and friends.”
Like a author, a letter “was honest and straightforward, and really, unequivocally touching,” pronounced Bernie Judge, editor emeritus of a Law Bulletin, “telling a unequivocally formidable story though self-pity.”
Mr. Rooney was postulated dual intense wishes. One wish was for a “good” death, during home instead of during a hospital, surrounded by desired ones. And, he was means to attend a mid-May graduation of his son, Jack, from a University of Notre Dame.
Jack Rooney wrote about his father’s illness on http://www.lifemattersmedia.org. “The usually approach to unequivocally ‘beat’ ALS is to live with joy, no matter how nauseous a progression,” a younger Rooney said. “ALS has gotten flattering nauseous for my dad, though we still see in him a fun that has always guided my family.”
“John was a leader in many ways,” pronounced Mr. Rooney’s brother, Tim. “He’s been a good instance to us.”
To get to work during a Law Bulletin, Mr. Rooney infrequently organised to ride on a public bus for people with disabilities, pronounced Milhizer, afterwards his editor. Its report was unpredictable. Some days, it would dump him off early. Other times, he’d arrive a small late. Still, “he would travel in with his hiker and he had a biggest grin on his face,” Milhizer said. “I’d speak to myself — ‘if John can start each day with a grin on his face with what he’s going through, we all can.’”
“Even when he was diagnosed,” sovereign appellate Judge William J. Bauer said, “He was upbeat.”
Mr. Rooney came to broadcasting naturally. His father, Edmund Rooney, was a reputable contributor for a aged Chicago Daily News from a mid-1950s to 1978, and after taught during Loyola University Chicago. He was pronounced to be a initial contributor on a stage of a Richard Speck slaying of 8 tyro nurses in 1966. Ed Rooney once bragged to his Daily News colleagues that his son “was a initial contributor to mangle a Tylenol story.”
Mr. Rooney had a kind of repute each contributor wants — dogged, expert, infallible and accurate. “He was one of a many reliable people we ever met,” pronounced Judge.
“He was a contributor we could trust with your wallet, your watch and your story,” pronounced Bauer. Though tenacious, “When something was off-the-record, he accepted we couldn’t speak about something . . . He was a superb reporter, in my opinion. we don’t remember any time he misquoted anybody.”
“He was a smashing reporter,” pronounced profession Joe Power. “He usually wanted a facts.”
After graduating from Marist High School, he complicated communications during Loyola, spending his youth year during a Rome center. During high propagandize and college, he worked as a go-fer for eminent personal-injury profession Philip Corboy. He and a Rooney siblings who followed him did such a good job, lawyers during a organisation started calling a go-fers “Rooneys,” as in, “Send me a Rooney!”
Later, John Rooney finished a master’s in open affairs stating at the University of Illinois during Springfield. He went to work for City News, where, in 1982, during 23, he pennyless a initial story about deaths from cyanide-tainted Tylenol. He won a Lisagor endowment and a Chicago Bar Association’s Herman Kogan Award for his work, which done for unapproachable moments during City News, with a repute as a small-but-scrappy news service.
“He saw that a integrate kids died of poisoning during dual opposite locations,” pronounced Judge, former arch of City News. “He was a initial to make a tie that nobody else had made.”
“He was during 11th and State” during a aged Police Headquarters, pronounced Tim Rooney. “He got a tip from a helper there was a connection” between a poisoning deaths.
Mr. Rooney worked as a reporter at a Tampa Tribune before fasten a Law Bulletin in 1988. His expertise was plain when he helped sight newcomers, pronounced Milhizer, orator for Chief Judge Timothy C. Evans. “The sovereign courthouse, a Daley Center, sovereign appellate, Illinois appellate, law firms, bar associations, he knew all a players,” Milhizer said, “and whenever we used his name, we had present credibility.”
“He was a husband, a father, a journalist, a White Sox fan, a unapproachable Irishman, a unapproachable South Sider,” pronounced Milhizer. Mr. Rooney also desired attending Blackhawks games.
His wife of 27 years, Meg, and their 3 sons — Jack, Ned and Dan — pulled together to caring for him. Friends and kin orderly a 2014 fundraiser at Bourbon Street, one of a biggest ever reason during a Merrionette Park eatery. “I never knew that place could reason that many people,” pronounced Power.
The Rooneys met during a dance competition during a Lincoln Park sports bar. They won a present certificate for cooking — their initial date. “He was usually so genuine,” pronounced Meg Rooney. “He would usually demeanour during you, and we knew when we were with him and he was articulate to you, we were a core of his world.” And, “He was an extraordinary father,” she said. “The many critical thing he told his boys was, ‘When you’re young, I’m not here to be your friend. I’m your dad. But we will be friends.’”
Mr. Rooney once told a columnist for a Daily Southtown, “I can’t rewrite a finale of this, so I’m not going to spend a time we have home on it.” He pushed to widespread a word about ALS by a Les Turner ALS Foundation and by what became famous as a “Ice Bucket Challenge.”
He died in his childhood home in St. John Fisher’s parish, where he and Meg Rooney raised their family. In further to his wife, children and brother, he is also survived by his sisters, Molly Kelly and Ellen Martin, and dual some-more brothers, Ed and Peter. Arrangements, that are approaching to take place subsequent week, are pending.