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Blue Island woman named parade queen

Lauren Catinellwas recently crowned Queen Chicago's St. Patrick's Day Parade. | Supplied photo

Lauren Catinella was recently crowned Queen of Chicago's St. Patrick's Day Parade. | Supplied photo

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Updated: April 8, 2014 6:40AM



Patience and persistence paid off for Lauren Catinella.

After two years of being in the queen’s court and 10 years of competing in the queen contest, the Blue Island resident is queen of this year’s Chicago St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

“Being in the court the last two years was spectacular. There’s nothing like the St. Patrick’s Day parade in the city of Chicago. It was wonderful,” Catinella, a 2005 graduate of Marian Catholic High School in Chicago Heights, said in a prepared statement.

The parade in downtown Chicago begins at noon March 15 at Balbo and Columbus drives and proceeds north on Columbus to Monroe Street.

There were more than 100 contestants this year. After meeting judges and going through a few interviews, Catinella was among five finalists before she was crowned queen during a ceremony Jan. 19 — achieving a goal of hers since she was a young girl.

Catinella attained a bachelor’s degree from Illinois State University in three years. She’s a certified paramedic and is taking classes toward a nursing degree from St. Xavier University. She also has assisted in coaching cheerleading at Marian Catholic .

Catinella has been busy since being chosen as parade queen, fulfilling duties such as appearing at numerous events and fundraisers.

The grand marshal of the parade is John McDonough, president and chief executive of the Blackhawks. The parade is again sponsored by Plumbers Union Local 130, which has sponsored it every year since 1957.



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