'It's not finished'
BY BECKY SCHLIKERMAN
Tinley Park Mayor Ed Zabrocki speaks at a memorial service for the Lane Bryant shooting victims at the Tinley Park Convention Center on Feb. 2, 2009. | File photo
Updated: January 27, 2011 3:35PM
Tinley Park Mayor Ed Zabrocki remembers Feb. 2, 2008, as if it were yesterday. He remembers the overcast day, sleet falling from the sky.
He remembers getting a call from police Chief Michael O'Connell about an armed robbery with one fatality.
He remembers the call a few minutes later, from O'Connell, who told the mayor "I think we have three dead," Zabrocki recalled.
At that point, Zabrocki headed to the Lane Bryant store in Brookside Marketplace - and the situation was escalating.
When the mayor got to the scene and got to the chief, the news was much worse.
"Ed, we have five dead," Zabrocki heard from the chief.
"We stared at each other for five to six seconds," Zabrocki said.
Two years later, that scene plays out in the mayor's head - he can even picture the police chief's black cap as they analyzed the situation - just feet from the Lane Bryant store where five women were killed and one injured.
And every day, when Zabrocki drives past Brookside Marketplace, he thinks of those five victims who lost their lives in his town.
"It could happen anywhere, but it happed in Tinley Park under my watch," Zabrocki said. "There is no closure to those five families. It's not finished."
And it's not over for the village.
"That closure will not come to the village either," Zabrocki said.
When Tinley Park in November was named the best place to raise kids in America by BusinessWeek magazine, the mayor was interviewed by a dozen media outlets, all of which asked about the dark cloud that hangs over the village.
"Until the individual (that killed five women and injured another) is caught, there is always going to be concern," he said.
Zabrocki is sure someone will one day be brought to justice for massacring five women, and he wants to be around when that happens.
"It happened under my watch and I want it solved under my watch," he said.