After being bombarded by some of the phoniest, lying politicians ever, I quietly closed my eyes and though about their opposites.

First, our North Riverside administration, village office people and all department leaders and their people. Perfect? Not quite. But, ask a question, need a problem solved or any kind of help – they all become like family, ready to help and stand by you with honesty and sincerity.

Finally, one of our greatest losses, especially compared to the many phony liars of today. She was always available and told the truth as only she could.

Judy Baar Topinka has been gone for two years – what a loss.

She helped hundreds of seniors find their dead bank accounts, among other things, and was always there to help any and all.

After not seeing her for 15 years, I met her at Cantata where she was rehabbing her leg. She called me in the hallway, hugged me and danced a quick few steps and twirls while flashing her smile and bright eyes.

She remembered me, and I was nothing special. But that was her, always making you feel like a million dollars.

She took on all the phonies and liars and helped everyone she could, often using her own time and money.

A real lady – politician and angel rolled into one – something you don’t find today.

Love you, miss you forever. The world has a hole in it that will never be filled.

Jim Zak

North Riverside