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Phil Rock passes away

Friday, Jan 29, 2016

* I didn’t know him well, but to this day, whenever I think about the Illinois Senate, I think of Phil Rock…


…Adding… Press release…

House Speaker Michael J. Madigan, D-Chicago, issued the following statement Friday, mourning the passing of former Senate President Phil Rock:

“I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of former Senate President Phil Rock. He was a great friend, mentor and member of the General Assembly for many, many years. His accomplishments, especially in the area of bettering the lives of children, are legion. Shirley and I join with his many friends and colleagues in offering sympathy and prayers to Sheila and their children for comfort and strength in these difficult times.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        


28 Comments
  1. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:17 am:

    RIP to a legend, a giant of Illinois politics and more importantly, as decent a man as ever walked the halls of the Capitol.


  2. - paddyrollingstone - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:21 am:

    Amen, 47th Ward. A great, great man. He once told me after my grandfather died and I thanked him for coming to the Mass: “I would have come back from the dead to be there.”

    Let us praise an illustrious man
    Faithful to his family and friends, strong in love.
    At peace in his heart and in his world.
    He has left us his good name and we recount his good name,
    And we recount his praiseworthy deeds.
    A generous man, his good works will never be forgotten.
    Among his family and his friends, there remains
    A rich inheritance born of him.
    His inheritance will last forever. His glory will not fade.
    His name lives on from generation to generation.
    We gather this day to sing his praises.
    We will proclaim his wisdom and his love of life all our days.

    The Book of Ecclesiastes


  3. - A guy - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:22 am:

    RIP. A genuinely decent and wonderful man.


  4. - Mongo - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:25 am:

    RIP, a great man and a great political force. Knew how to make the grand bargain and always, always looked out for those in need.


  5. - Downstate - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:26 am:

    During his Senate campaign he came to speak to our college political science class. Very impressive speaker.


  6. - sad - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:33 am:

    A great man.


  7. - Loop Lady - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:36 am:

    If only there were more like him…
    Godspeed and my sympathies to his wonderful family…


  8. - Because I said so..... - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:38 am:

    I remember waiting in line to get in a bar on St. Patrick’s Day. He was president of the Senate at the time and in line behind me. I’m sure he could have easily talked himself to the head of the line but didn’t. I was impressed.


  9. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:39 am:

    ===I didn’t know him well, but to this day, whenever I think about the Illinois Senate, I think of Phil Rock…===

    I have tried to think of a comment on my own, I couldn’t.

    This says it best. This says it all form me.

    My sincere condolences to Mr. Rock’s family and friends.


  10. - Publius - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:39 am:

    Dealt with him during the first year of the Edgar Administration Always a gentleman. Always a man of his word. A public servant who was a tough negotiator but who always tried to work things out for the public good.


  11. - And I Approved This Message - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:44 am:

    A classy gentleman in every way. And apparently a dying breed in politics.


  12. - Steve Schnorf - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:55 am:

    One of the really good guys. How we miss people like him in government and politics


  13. - Been There - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:59 am:

    Great man with a great family. As stated by others he never put on like he was more important than anyone else in the room. Just easy to get along with.


  14. - Janeway63 - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 12:17 pm:

    My sincere condolences to the Rock family. He was a man whose word you could count on and who I respected greatly.


  15. - Keyser Soze - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 12:17 pm:

    Good guy. We need more like him.


  16. - VanillaMan - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 12:26 pm:

    I remember how he worked with Thompson on many state issues.

    Bipartisanship!

    ‘Sigh’


  17. - Retired Lawyer - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 1:22 pm:

    I lived in Oak Park while he was a senator and worked on a legal assistance program with him. He indeed was a legend in Illinois politics, a true statesman and a fine lawyer. My sincere condolences to his family.


  18. - Tommydanger - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 1:39 pm:

    I owe my career to Phil Rock. As decent, caring and effective legislator as there ever was.

    He also had a handshake that would swallow your hand and that conveyed both his strength and grace.


  19. - Jeff Johnson - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 1:45 pm:

    Phil was a well respected by both sides of the aisle. Unlike today, there was a time to govern and a time to be political. I’m sure my wife and Phil will have some nice conversations about the old days and how bad things have now gotten. RIP Senator.


  20. - Casual observer - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 2:16 pm:

    I remember him playing short stop at the house v senate softball game. He was good and he showed leadership on the field. Not long after he became President of the Senate.


  21. - Old Lobbyist - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 2:19 pm:

    A great guy. Too many of the old state players are leaving us.


  22. - Ken Robbins - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 2:27 pm:

    It’s hard to top all of the accolades already given by others. I can only say that as the now retired head of a major trade association, there was no person in public office for whom I ever had more respect and trust than I had for Phil. In fact, once he left public office I asked and he agreed to serve on our Board, where his contributions were all we could have asked for. During sometimes contentious policy discussions at the board, I can still hear him say: “But did you ever think about looking at it this way…”. And inevitably we did.


  23. - Cassandra - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 2:46 pm:

    He wasn’t that old by today’s standards. Lewy body disease is a scourge. It should be a priority for medical research. But many people have never heard of it.


  24. - relocated - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 4:15 pm:

    Its hard to imagine the stuff thats happening now, happening on Sen Rock’s watch. He was a true statesman who always raised the process above the petty stuff. Not that he couldnt or wouldn’t throw a sharp elbow or two when needed but at the end of the day the job got done.


  25. - Arthur Andersen - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 4:26 pm:

    VM, in reading of his passing, I also recalled how Sen. Rock worked with JRT to get some big things done.

    A true statesman.


  26. - dr. reason a. goodwin - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 4:42 pm:

    A total class act who didn’t let his political partisanship get in the way of good government.


  27. - Nancy Fritzsche - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 4:44 pm:

    So proud to have worked for Senator Rock.. The absolute highlight of my long state career. He was a statesman. And a gentleman and I know that I am a better person for knowing him. Godspeed Mr President


  28. - Facts are Stubborn Things - Monday, Feb 1, 16 @ 8:11 am:

    Class act who was so kind, even to those who he knew he would not benefit directly from. Always treated me with such kindness whenever I had the privilege of being around him, and I certainly was not in a position to benefit him…he was kind because it was his nature. Thank You Mr President, and may you rest in peace.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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