Park Ridge-Niles School District 64 moved to its new District Office on Monday, September 19th. However, there was still one final piece of business to take care of at 164 S Prospect Avenue, the Raymond E. Hendee Educational Service Center (ESC) building.
On Monday, Superintendent Dr. Eric Olson and the Hendee Family went around ESC one more time before the new owners of the building took over.
Dorothy Hendee, the widow of Raymond, took just a few steps into the old district office, and her face immediately lit up.
“The memories just come flooding back. Memories of all the people that aren’t here anymore,” said Dorothy.
Her late husband, Raymond, was the District 64 Superintendent from 1970 to 1990 and worked in the District much longer than that. So the Hendees are very familiar with the building in Uptown Park Ridge.
“This is so wonderful,” said Dorothy with a big smile.
She stood in the now empty superintendent’s office with her daughter Kim and son Mark by her side. The trio spent time swapping stories and recapturing all that happened within the walls of the old district office.
“There are so many fond memories of my father and thinking of him being here,” said Mark. “I’m thinking of my childhood and him being here. It’s nice.”
Raymond’s life’s work was education, and the Hendee Family appreciates that it was in the Park Ridge-Niles community.
“There’s such pride in knowing that the District's reputation would bring kids and families into town because of the schools,” said Kim, Raymond’s daughter. “Even now. I was at the store not too long ago, and someone walked up to me and said, ‘Are you Kim Hendee by any chance? Your dad was Dr. Hendee, and I worked for him.’
“There are just wonderful memories of the people, and it’s such a cool community,” said Kim.
“Most of my father’s career and the leadership he gave, it was my whole childhood,” said Mark. “So this is everything to me.”