DeLorean is on hand for dedication of new Flossmoor downtown clocks

  Flossmoor Mayor Paul Braun
  at the wheel of a DeLorean
  following Saturday's
  dedication of the new
  downtown clocks.
  by Mary Compton/H-F 

Believe it or not, Flossmoor’s downtown clocks had their own “Back to the Future” moment more than 35 years ago.

Mayor Paul Braun said the timepieces in Flossmoor’s clock tower were rendered inoperable during a 1981 thunderstorm.

At 2 a.m. on the night of the storm, the clocks were struck by lightning, sending pieces of the faces showering onto the street, Braun told the H-F Chronicle.

Two handsome clocks on the tower at Sterling Avenue and Center Drive were back in operation Saturday when they were officially unveiled at the Flossmoor Fest celebration.

Braun marked the occasion from a classic DeLorean automobile, which “Back to the Future” aficionados know is a key component of the 1985 film’s time travel narrative. A town clock tower, scorched by a 1955 lightning strike, is also central to the plot.

Braun thanked Flossmoor resident Ken Friedman, who allowed his DeLorean to be part of the clock tower dedication.

A group of area residents, forming the Flossmoor Clock Committee, started raising money this spring for two new timepieces on the tower.

“The project all started when Walter McBride, who grew up in Flossmoor, asked the question ‘What happened to the clocks?’" Braun said.

Besides McBride, other committee members were Braun and his wife Mib, Karan Bobele-Thomas, Mike Peebles, Jim Groves and Dean and Carolyn Armstrong. The group hosted two successful fundraisers during the summer and also received contributions from individuals in the H-F area.

“Because of the communities' generosity we were able to raise the money to replace the clocks,” he said, noting that support came from residents of Homewood and Flossmoor.

Additional funds that were raised will be used to restore the sign on the corner of the clock tower building.

Braun said this year’s Flossmoor Fest was a huge success and thanked village staff  including police, fire and public works — and a number of community volunteers and sponsors. It was a picture-perfect day. The village introduced its new logo and a community photo was taken by drone. There were bands, food and other refreshments and more activities for young people at Flossmoor Park.

The new Flossmoor clocks will be an important addition to the downtown area for years to come, Braun said.

“May the Flossmoor clocks keep us on time for another 35 years,” he said.

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