Mary Ellen Aschenbrenner
My published writing career began at the age of fourteen when I penned a Lockport Township High School gossip colummn for The Spectator, a Joliet weekly newspaper.
My editor, fearless Molly Zelko, fought the underworld with brazen headlines and photos. Pinball machines and illegal city contrats were routine copy.
"If 'they' get me--referring to the Mafia--I'll kick off my shoes as a sign," Molly told her staff and friends.
September 25, 1957 was Molly's last day on the job. Molly's shoes were found curbside by her Western Avenue apartment on Joliet's Near West Side.
Unlike her stylish red pumps, Moly was never found. Her disappearance created national news and was investigated by then Attorney General Robert Kennedy and drew the attention of J. Edgar Hoover. Kenedy wrote about the case in his book, "The Enemy Within."
Ottawa Times (retired) Edtor Lonny Cain writes about Molly in his forthcoming book tentatively titled Molly's Missing.
I met Cain when I worked as a correspondent for The Joliet Herald News; He was a full-time reporter. Cain later becdame The Ottawa Times' Managing Editor. He retired in 2015 completing 37 years with the Times.
If anyone reading this website has info on Molly or knew her personally, please contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org