Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of SR0624
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Full Text of SR0624  102nd General Assembly




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2    WHEREAS, The members of the Illinois Senate are saddened
3to learn of the death of former Illinois State Senator and
4United States Congressman Harris Fawell, who passed away on
5November 11, 2021; and
6    WHEREAS, Congressman Fawell was born to Walter and Mildred
7Fawell on March 25, 1929; he graduated from West Chicago
8Community High School and attended North Central College;
9baseball was a family passion, and he, along with his
10brothers, Tom, Bruce, and Mike, played in the Fox Valley
11league, which was organized by their father and in which they
12earned the nickname The Fighting Fawells, due to their
13competitive zeal; he earned a brief stint with a Detroit
14Tigers minor league affiliation in Greenville, South Carolina
15during his college years; he received his Juris Doctorate from
16the Kent College of Law in 1952; that same year, he married
17Ruth Johnson; and
18    WHEREAS, Congressman Fawell served as an Assistant State's
19Attorney for DuPage County and then practiced law, first in
20West Chicago and then in Naperville; he was a senior partner
21with the law firm of Fawell, James and Brooks; during the
221950s, he chaired a committee that helped defeat an effort to
23establish a horse racetrack in Naperville, an accomplishment



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1that earned him a loyal following when he turned to politics;
3    WHEREAS, Congressman Fawell served in the Illinois State
4Senate from 1963 to 1977; he was named Outstanding Freshman
5State Senator by the Illinois Press Association; he sponsored
6the legislation that provided parks for special needs children
7and adults throughout the State; he supported legislation that
8would have compelled developers to donate park land to
9communities in which they gained their fortune, which did not
10become law but was the precursor for the Naperville Land Cash
11Donation Ordinance, which he spearheaded and which resulted in
12the acquisition of acres of park land in Naperville; and
13    WHEREAS, Congressman Fawell was elected to the U.S.
14Congress in 1985 and served there until 1999; he co-founded
15the Porkbusters Coalition; he was the chief sponsor of 23
16bills that eliminated $2 billion in pork barrel projects; he
17was also known for his expertise in labor and health issues and
18for his efforts to provide more equitable healthcare to
19workers in small businesses; he was a Republican moderate and
20a fiscal conservative and was popular with taxpayer and
21business groups but also earned high marks from environmental
22and women's rights groups; he was one of only two Republican
23state senators who helped pass Fair Housing legislation in the
241960s; he publicly supported Barack Obama in 2008; he was an



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1atypical politician, preferring to keep a low profile rather
2than grab headlines, a man with a low-key demeanor and a human
3touch; and
4    WHEREAS, Congressman Fawell wrote articles on Servant
5Leadership that appeared in The International Journal of
6Servant Leadership at Gonzaga University; these essays
7reflected his interest in labor relations, an interest which
8had deepened during his time on the Education and Labor
9Committee in the House of Representatives; he also served on
10the Board of Trustees of his alma mater, North Central
11College; and
12    WHEREAS, Congressman Fawell was a member of the Community
13United Methodist Church in Naperville; he knew scores of old
14jazz standards by heart and had a taste for American doggerel
15and folk poetry; he was wise, philosophical, patient,
16empathetic, and understanding; he had a subtle and sometimes
17biting sense of humor and a playful gift for language; he had a
18deep and abiding interest in spiritual issues and literature;
20    WHEREAS, Congressman Fawell is survived by his wife of 69
21years, Ruth; his children, Richard (Yvonne), Jane (Robert
22Heap), and John (Yvette Begue); and eight grandchildren and
23seven great-grandchildren; therefore, be it



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2ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, that we mourn the passing of
3former Illinois State Senator and United States Congressman
4Harris Fawell and extend our sincere condolences to his
5family, friends, and all who knew and loved him; and be it
7    RESOLVED, That a suitable copy of this resolution be
8presented to the family of Congressman Fawell as an expression
9of our deepest sympathy.