Sunday, December 14, 2014

Uptown Woman Continues To Search For Her Son: Another Victim of John Gacy

Michael Marino, at age 14,
was one of Gacy's youngest victims
Even 20 years after his execution, the spectre of John Wayne Gacy continues to haunt Uptown.

In 2011, one of his victims was identified as as William George Bundy of Buena Park after DNA testing confirmed it.  Photographer Bob Rehak recently mentioned the subject of one of his portraits taken in the 1970s had an older brother who was killed by Gacy.  Victim John Mowery attended Truman College. Rick Johnston was last seen after his family dropped him off for a concert at the Aragon.  Victims Billy Carroll, Jr. and Samuel Stapleton lived in Uptown.  Victim Randall Reffett had attended Stockton School.

Now an Uptown woman continues to search for positive identification of her son.

14-year-old Michael Marino has been long assumed to be Gacy's "Victim #14."  He and a friend, 16-year-old Kenneth Parker, were last seen alive at a hamburger restaurant near Clark and Diversey, in 1976. Michael never came home for Sunday supper with his mother and their regular movie night out.

Michael and Kenneth Parker's remains were identified among those found by police buried under Gacy's home in 1978.  After dental testing (DNA testing wasn't available then), Michael Marino's body was identified in 1980 and his family had him laid to rest at Queen of Heaven Catholic Cemetery in Hillside.

But his mother felt there were inconsistencies in the identification of her son's body.  In October 2012, Sherry Marino won her battle to have the remains buried there exhumed and DNA-tested.  It turned out that the grave she had been visiting for all those years didn't contain the remains of her son.

This past week, Mrs. Marino -- now age 70 and living in Uptown -- won another battle, to have Kenneth Parker's remains exhumed from Rosehill Cemetery in Edgewater to see if Michael Marino's body was misidentified as his friend's.  DNA testing will again be done.

It's a tragedy that Gacy's killing spree 40 years ago is still claiming victims.  We hope our neighbor finds answers as she continues to search for her son.

1 comment:

  1. Rest in Peace Michael Marino you were a very handsome Italian young man.