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2    WHEREAS, The members of the Illinois Senate are saddened
3to learn of the death of Rickye Denise "Rikki" Jones, who
4passed away on April 21, 2024; and
5    WHEREAS, Rikki Jones was born to Mercedes Jones and Willis
6Jones in Chicago on August 12, 1950; she was raised by her
7grandparents, Marie and Wilbur Williams, and her aunt,
8Patricia "Pat" Williams; she attended St. Martin Catholic
9School and graduated from St. Thomas the Apostle High School
10in Hyde Park; she pursued higher education at Illinois
11Benedictine College and spent a semester at sea through
12Chapman College, studying and traveling in Asia; she later
13obtained her master's degree from the University of Phoenix;
15    WHEREAS, Rikki Jones was a beloved educator, a passionate
16community activist, and a tireless champion of political
17empowerment; her teaching career spanned many years at the
18City Colleges of Chicago and the Chicago Public School system,
19where her deep passion and love for young children were
20evident in her unwavering availability and willingness to help
21whenever and however she could, remaining dedicated to
22uplifting others through education and advocacy; and



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1    WHEREAS, Throughout her life, Rikki Jones was at the
2forefront of the fight for rights and opportunities, beginning
3at the age of 17 when she became involved with Operation
4Breadbasket, organized by the Southern Christian Leadership
5Conference (SCLC) and later transformed into Operation PUSH,
6and the Black Panther Party Breakfast Program; and
7    WHEREAS, Rikki Jones' passion for civic engagement led to
834 years of leadership with the Cook County Democratic Women,
9an organization committed to advancing women's rights and
10political representation; she was responsible for launching
11the careers of various political leaders, as well as
12advocating for numerous campaigns, including Mayor Harold
13Washington, U.S. Senator Carol Mosley Braun, President Barack
14Obama, Associate Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson of the U.S.
15Supreme Court, Speaker Emanuel "Chris" Welch of the Illinois
16House of Representatives, and many more; she attended the 1996
17Democratic National Convention after serving as a volunteer
18worker on President Bill Clinton's campaign and was chosen as
19a delegate for the 2024 Democratic National Convention in
20support for President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala
21Harris; and
22    WHEREAS, Rikki Jones was a regular guest speaker on such
23WVON shows as the Cliff Kelly Show and the Perri Small Show,
24where she advocated for her community and provided helpful



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1information; and
2    WHEREAS, Rikki Jones was the recipient of several
3accolades during her life, including the Dunbar Vocational
4Career Academy Service Award; she was further honored by Cook
5County Clerk Dorothy Brown and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin as
6well as at the Power Rising Conference; and
7    WHEREAS, Rikki Jones committed to her faith at an early
8age, being baptized at Holy Immanuel Episcopal Church as an
9infant; she served as an active member in Sunday school and the
10children's choir, participating in all church pageants; as an
11adult, she was baptized at Maryland Avenue Missionary Baptist
12Church, where she served as youth director for many years; she
13was a dedicated member of Pleasant Gift Missionary Baptist
14Church, serving on the boards of trustees and nursing, working
15in the youth group, serving as a Sunday school teacher, and
16leading a special project for the outreach ministry; and
17    WHEREAS, Rikki Jones deeply loved her family and was
18affectionately known as "Aunt Rikki" to all of her younger
19family members; she shared a special bond with her Aunt Pat and
20adored her cousins, Ann Marie and Joy, who were like sisters;
22    WHEREAS, Rikki Jones made an indelible mark on her



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1community; she will be remembered for her unwavering
2commitment to social justice and equality, inspiring
3generations to come; and
4    WHEREAS, Rikki Jones was preceded in death by her
5grandparents; her parents; and her brothers, Kenneth (Val)
6Wilbur and Wayne (Ann) Vincent; and
7    WHEREAS, Rikki Jones is survived by her aunt; her nieces
8and nephews, Marie, Nicole, Vincent, Kenneth, and Autumn; her
9cousins; her great-cousins, Jonathan, Jeremy, Olivia, Kathryn,
10and Alexander; her great-nephews, Rahaman, Rahsul, and
11Rahfeeq; her great-nieces, Noa and Hannah; her special
12friends, Reverend Krista Alston and her extended family; and a
13host of family, friends, students, her church family, and the
14political community; therefore, be it
16ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, that we mourn the passing of
17Rickye Denise "Rikki" Jones and extend our sincere condolences
18to her family, friends, and all who knew and loved her; and be
19it further
20    RESOLVED, That a suitable copy of this resolution be
21presented to the family of Rikki Jones as an expression of our
22deepest sympathy.