The social room of the Dearborn Homes public housing development was dedicated to former resident Irene Hughes on Monday – her 103rd birthday.
“Mother Hughes” lived at the CHA development for 55 years, from March 1, 1959 to July 30, 2014. She now lives with her daughter in Bolingbrook.
“She is a very nice person and has cared about her community from the beginning,” said Venis Frazier, CHA’s Director of Senior Services. “If she saw that kids weren’t doing what they were supposed to, she’d let them know. And she is as lively as ever. It’s a beautiful thing.”
Hughes was born on Aug. 12, 1915. Besides her influence on young people, she was quite a walker in her prime – able to do so quickly and for long distances. Residents Monday talked about struggling to keep up with her.
The plaque read: “Mother Hughes was not only a profound difference-maker in her community, but she also called on her fellow residents to actively participate in the well-being and habitability of their community. Her unselfish, positive and influential impact on her immediate neighborhood and surrounding community has allowed her to be bestowed with the title, ‘Agent of Change.’ Her contributions will never be forgotten.”
This article originally appeared in the Chicago Defender.