OBITUARY

John M. Deady

February 1, 1924March 1, 2019
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John M. Deady, 95, WWII Army Veteran, Former Bodyguard of Mayor Richard J. Daley, retired Sergeant, CPD and a longtime runner at Blake-Lamb Funeral Home. Beloved husband of the late Rita M., nee Johnson. John is survived by many loving nieces and nephews. Visitation Thursday, 3:00 PM until time of Chapel Service 7:00 PM at Chapel Hill Gardens South Funeral Home, 11333 S. Central Ave., Oak Lawn, IL 60453. Entombment Private at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital will be appreciated. Info. 708-636-1200 or www.chapelhillgardenssouth.com.

Services

  • Visitation Thursday, March 7, 2019
  • Chapel Service Thursday, March 7, 2019
REMEMBERING

John M. Deady

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Biography

Train Fireman, Army Vet, Chicago Police Officer, Mayor’s Bodyguard …
There are many aspects of a person’s life, especially a life that is in its 94th year. That life is John M. Deady. The M is for Morgan. Born Morgan John Deady, his name was changed when he was christened to John Morgan Deady as there were no saints named Morgan in the Catholic Church.
John was raised by his grandparents in Chicago and he spent many summers in Michigan with relatives hunting, fishing and being an adventurous child which carried forward into adulthood.
He worked for the railroad as a fireman shoveling coal into the train’s steam engine, maintaining the water level in the boiler and watching steam pressure before and after WWII. John traveled many miles on trains for several years.
He went in the Army in 1943 and served his country in the Aleutian Islands — volcanic islands extending some 1,200 miles west of the Alaskan Peninsula — with barren, mountainous terrain and harsh weather. John was stationed on a military base in Dutch Harbor.
The Japanese conducted air strikes on his location and made landfall on the U.S.-owned islands of Kiska and Attu. But the fate of the Japanese had been sealed when the Americans established air and naval supremacy over the islands, cutting Japanese supply lines. U.S. troops retook Attu and three months later reclaimed Kiska. It was the only U.S. soil Japan would claim during the war in the Pacific.
John met his wife at a local watering hole by happenstance the night before Thanksgiving. Rita was there to accommodate her girlfriend’s request. After a few dates, John met the Johnson family for the first time – parents, five brothers and two sisters. He recalled that dinner was quite intimidating. Rita’s brothers and sisters were protective and questioned John throughout his visit. Obviously, the day went well as the couple was together for 51 years. Both adventurous, they would take spontaneous road trips. Get up, grab a map and start driving ending up in many great places.
John joined the Chicago police force in 1956 and worked in the traffic division and at Midway Airport. John occasionally was asked by his sergeant to fill in for fellow officers who were assigned to the mayor’s security detail—Mayor Richard J. Daley. At one point, the sergeant asked if he was interested in being on the mayor’s detail full-time. John quickly responded “is the pope Catholic” and his sergeant gathered that was a yes. Many officers were very interested in being on the mayor’s detail and lobbied through political contacts and clout to get the position. John’s personality and stature got him on the detail.
John spent four years (1967-1970) on the mayor’s security detail attending political events, functions and other activities including the Democratic convention. Occasionally, John drove the “kids” to school – Richie and Billy – as well as taking Mrs. Daley to various locations. On one occasion, Mrs. Daley asked John where to go to purchase toys for the children. Without hesitation, John replied Toys R’ Us, a store that had opened recently in the area.
John also accompanied the mayor to parades, including one held for the Apollo 8 astronauts — Commander Frank Borman, Command Module Pilot James Lovell, and Lunar Module Pilot William Anders — who became the first humans to travel beyond low Earth orbit and see Earth as a whole planet. To celebrate this historic event, the City of Chicago held a parade in February 1969. John walked the parade route next to the astronauts’ vehicle and met the three astronauts who personally autographed a commemorative document. One of many memorabilia John had received during that period.
In 1971, John became a sergeant and left the mayor’s detail. He finished his years of service on the Chicago Police Department in 1981.
John and Rita moved to Deltona, Florida in the early 1980s shortly after his retirement. They returned to the Chicagoland area in 1993 to be closer to their nieces and nephews after the passing of Rita’s sister and brother-in-law. A few years later John’s wife passed. He was so bored staying at home John worked at odd jobs until he was 92 years old.
He continues to marvel at the fact he is still healthy after all these years having out lived all his relatives and friends.
Live every day as you never know what will happen tomorrow.