Royko in Love: Mike's Letters to Carol

More Royko in Love

Three photo albums

for Royko in Love: Mike’s Letters to Carol
by Mike Royko, edited by David Royko

The book Royko in Love includes fifteeen pictures, but there were quite a few more that could have been included. They are collected on these pages, with comments by David Royko, Mike Royko’s son and the editor of Royko in Love. More about the book.

Click on each thumbnail photo to open a larger version in a pop-up window.

Mom and Dad visit Don Karaiskos, ca 1957–58

Mom and Dad in AkronMom and Dad remained friends with Don (“Chris”) Karaiskos throughout their lives. These were taken in Don’s back yard in Akron, Ohio.

Mike Royko & his mother and siblings—June, 1958

Bobby's weddingMike was best-man at his younger brother Bobby’s wedding (whose first marriage was short-lived).
L-R: Mike, Dorothy, their mother Helen, Eleanor, and Bobby

The Royko / Belushi connection

Royko Belushi connectionThis photo is probably from 1959, though it could be 1963, because Mom appears to be pregnant with either me or my younger brother Robby. They are with Marion and Pete Belushi. Pete’s brother was Adam, father of eventual comic stars Jim and John Belushi. I have a vague memory of some family gatherings with the Belushis when we were kids, with John and Jim present, but my parents were closer friends with Marion and Pete—so close that Mom and Dad named Aunt Marion and Uncle Pete my Godparents. They’d become friends soon after Mom and Dad were married. Dad would meet Mom during her lunch break from her job in a doctor’s office, and Marion and Pete ran the grill where they would eat. Dad’s column from March 7, 1982 (reprinted in the posthumous One More Time: The Best of Mike Royko) was written when he learned of John’s death. In it, he talks of Pete, Marion, Adam, Jim and John Belushi. This photo was likely taken in Marion and Pete’s restaurant, Fair Oaks, on Dempster in Morton Grove (now long-gone), the kind of self-made success story that Dad appreciated, and loved to see his friends achieve, as he did himself.

Halloween partiers

Halloween party
Halloween party 1959
Mom and Dad’s love of costume parties continued throughout their life together—I remember some doozies when I was a teenager. Here are a couple of photos from Halloweens of the ’50s. Based on the date of development, the second one is from 1959. Mom looks pretty good considering she’d had a baby (me) only a few months earlier.

Carol and Mike Royko in 1963

Carol and Mike Royko 1963Attending a wedding reception. They were married for almost 9 years, had a four-year-old (me) and a newborn (Robby), and Dad was about to write his first column.

Before the farewell—1975

Royko cabin Wisconsin 197512-year-old Robby, Mom, and me at 16 at the Wisconsin summer house Dad wrote about in his 1979 column in memory of my mother, A November Farewell

Mom’s Last Christmas—1978

Royko Family Christmas 1978My cousin Amelia sent me this picture, taken in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin at my Uncle Bobby and Aunt Geri’s house in 1978. I was thrilled to receive the photo, unaware that it existed. Note the portable cassette recorder near my feet (I’m the guy in the middle, without a guitar). From Royko In Love, page 108: “Mike mentions singing with Carol, which they continued to do throughout their life together—I happened to tape-record a family Christmas gathering in 1978, the last before Mom’s unexpected death, and there they were, singing songs in harmony, with Dad’s guitar in accompaniment.” This is a picture of those moments.
L-R: Dad (Mike Royko), Mom (Carol Royko), me (David Royko), Amelia Royko (daughter of Uncle Bobby and Aunt Geri), Rob Royko (my brother), Uncle Bobby (Dad’s younger brother)

Book details:

Mike Royko
Royko in Love: Mike’s Letters to Carol
Edited by David Royko
254 pages, 15 halftones ©2010
Cloth $24.00 ISBN: 9780226730783

For information on purchasing the book—from bookstores or here online—please go to the webpage for Royko in Love: Mike’s Letters to Carol.

See also: