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Memorial service set for longtime South Side educator Reva Hairston

A memorial service for the mother of 5th Ward Alderman Leslie Hairston will be held Saturday, May 11, 2019, at the AKArama Foundation Inc. Community Service Center, 6220 S. Ingleside Ave., Chicago, Illinois, from 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Reva Hairston’s mother died Feb. 9, 2019, two weeks before the Municipal Election. She fell ill in November and was recovering at Montgomery Place.

The elder Hairston was a distinguished educator. In 1990, she was one of two recipients of the Borg-Warner Award for School Leadership as principal of Mary C. Terrell Elementary School in the Chicago Housing Authority’s former Robert Taylor Homes. Hairston served as principal from 1976 until her retirement.

The long time 5th Ward resident was married to Lester Shelton Hairston for 40 years before his death in 1995. They were the proud parents of Leslie and her younger brother Scott, who lives in Minneapolis with his family. An entrepreneur at heart, Lester was owner of the Avenue Lounge before becoming the city’s first African-American McDonald’s franchisee.

Forced into a runoff election, the alderman’s family was unable to hold a public service for her mother until this month. She and her mother were very close, and it is only fitting that friends and family will share their memories of Reva the day before Mother’s Day.

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