We first met Gov. Pat Quinn on March 3, 2005. That was the day our son, Corp. John T. Olson USMC, was buried. John died at the young age of 21 and served three tours of duty in Iraq. Then-Lt. Gov. Quinn came, all by himself, to pay his respects. As he gave us his condolences, Pat (as we fondly refer to him) asked us what he could do. Our response: Don't let our country or our state forget John and all the fallen.
We can tell you Gov. Quinn has not failed us. For many years before he was governor, and still today he has attended nearly every wake or funeral for the fallen in Illinois. He is involved with Gold Star Mothers and The Illinois Freedom Run among countless causes. He is the biggest advocate of veterans, their families and Gold Star Families, and his genuine support of our military brings us true comfort.
Being governor is tough, especially with the state of affairs Illinois was in when he inherited the job. And right now, everyone is talking about the economy that is a major priority. But every day, we live with the loss of our son, and that is our private battle.
We as a state need Gov. Quinn because he has made the hard decisions to put us on the right path, but also because he has not forgotten about you and me. He hasn't forgotten the millions of everyday people and our struggles, and he has never, ever forgotten John.
Just like John, Pat loves his country and serves with honor and dignity because he knows he can make a difference. What Illinois needs is an honest, hardworking, compassionate governor. We cannot forget that we already have that in Gov. Quinn.
John and Diana Olson
Elk Grove Village