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posted: 6/15/2012 3:02 PM

Memories of Ray Bradbury light up Waukegan

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  • A sign outside the Waukegan Public Library memorializes renowned science-fiction author and Waukegan native Ray Bradbury, who died June 5 at the age of 91.

      A sign outside the Waukegan Public Library memorializes renowned science-fiction author and Waukegan native Ray Bradbury, who died June 5 at the age of 91.
    Courtesy of Ellyn Ruhlmann/Waukegan Public Library

  • Megan Wells, artistic director of the Ray Bradbury Storytelling Festival, performs one of Bradbury's short stories.

      Megan Wells, artistic director of the Ray Bradbury Storytelling Festival, performs one of Bradbury's short stories.
    Courtesy of Ellyn Ruhlmann/Waukegan Public Library

  • A crowd assembles to hear Ray Bradbury stories and a tribute on June 6.

      A crowd assembles to hear Ray Bradbury stories and a tribute on June 6.
    Courtesy of Ellyn Ruhlmann/Waukegan Public Library

  • After the service, a fan placed roses near an old Smith Corona typewriter memorializing Bradbury's creative process.

      After the service, a fan placed roses near an old Smith Corona typewriter memorializing Bradbury's creative process.
    Courtesy of Ellyn Ruhlmann/Waukegan Public Library

  • Bradbury's friend Wayne Munn reminisces about the author at the memorial tribute.

      Bradbury's friend Wayne Munn reminisces about the author at the memorial tribute.
    Courtesy of Ellyn Ruhlmann/Waukegan Public Library

  • Waukegan Mayor Robert Sabonjian reads at the Ray Bradbury tribute.

      Waukegan Mayor Robert Sabonjian reads at the Ray Bradbury tribute.
    Courtesy of Ellyn Ruhlmann/Waukegan Public Library

 
Waukegan Public Library Submission

Candle flames flickered in Green Town Wednesday, June 6, as Ray Bradbury fans gathered for a memorial tribute to the Waukegan-born author of "Fahrenheit 451," "The Martian Chronicles" and other best-sellers. Bradbury died June 5 at age 91.

Although he moved from Waukegan as a teen in 1934, the author continued to call upon memories of his childhood there, spent playing around the ravine and rail yards, or sitting amid the stacks at the old Carnegie Library.

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In the introduction to "Dandelion Wine," Bradbury explains why Waukegan, which he renamed "Green Town" in his novels, was so special.

"Why, I was born there. It was my life," he said.

And it's a life that Waukegan will continue to celebrate and remember, in his books, the storytelling festival established in his honor, and the legacy of inspiration he leaves to all the residents of his hometown.

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