EDISON PARK — In traveling all of the United States and Canada with the Chicago Blackhawks, John McDonough is often asked where he's from.
He usually says Chicago, the Blackhawks' president and CEO said at a rally held in his honor Saturday, but what he really means is he's from Edison Park.
McDonough and other Blackhawks officials brought the Stanley Cup to a rally in Edison Park, McDonough's native neighborhood, on Saturday. Each member of the organization gets a day with the championship trophy, and McDonough chose to spend at least some of his day at a public rally.
McDonough said he decided to do so because the far Northwest Side neighborhood has made him the person he is today.
"Because of where I was raised, and where I come from, your finger prints are on this cup," McDonough said to hundreds of fans who helped shut down a stretch of Northwest Highway in Edison Park. "This is your Stanley Cup."
For volunteering his time to bring the Cup to the public, McDonough was showered with gifts and praise from community leaders and neighbors. Ald. Anthony Napolitano (41st) unveiled a street sign that will mark Honorary John McDonough Way on a stretch of nearby Ottawa Avenue.
"You mean more to this community than you can possibly comprehend," said Napolitano, who also gave McDonough his own customized hockey jerseys from both the Chicago Police and Chicago Fire hockey teams.
He was also given gifts from two of his alma maters, St. Juliana School and Notre Dame College Prep, as well as a key to the neighborhood.
"You can take the guy out of the community, but you can't take the community out of the guy," said State Sen. John Mulroe.
McDonough entered the rally through a parted path in the middle of the amassed crowd, the Stanley Cup right behind him. He looked at times uncomfortable with the attention being solely on him, and even joked about the potential unintended consequences of having his name on a resident street.
"I'm worried that property values might go down," McDonough joked. "I hope that's not the case."
Ultimately, McDonough said that Edison Park has played a big role in the franchise's success, as a few administrators and front office personnel are from the area, and for good reason. That's because the community is like a small town within a big city, McDonough and others said.
"I've probably gotten a resume from half of you here," McDonough joked.
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