Page 44 - Jan2022_FOP_Magazine
P. 44

 Effi Keske has served meals to Chicago Police Officers for nearly 20 years.
Now You’re Cooking
Effi Keske makes Chicago Police Officers Greek food for the soul
If you are a Chicago Police Officer in 016, chances are you have had the pleasure of meeting Effi Keske and tasting the de- licious meals that are her special way of backing the blue.
For nearly 20 years, Keske has spent all her free time cooking for officers in multiple districts, including 014, 015 and 025. She dedicates most of her cooking to officers in 016, which is where she resides. And each time, she feeds anywhere between 20 and 40 officers.
“It’s like my own family,” Keske shared. “They love me. I love them, too.”
Keske, 78, doesn’t just cook for officers on a special occasion or a holiday. On any given day, she might wake up at 2 a.m. to prepare everything but the kitchen sink for officers to enjoy a meal, from spanakopita to pastitsio to moussaka. She arranges an array of aluminum trays filled with traditional Greek dishes and Keske specialties.
Keske has a connection to law enforcement through her daughter, Officer Crisova Huntowski, who is assigned to the academy. Apart from having a family member on the job, Keske affirmed that she cooks catering-level meals for no reason other than her support for the men and women who put their lives on the line every day.
“My heart goes to the police officers,” she confided. “They put on the uniform, they go to work, and you don’t know if they’re
Effi Keske and 16th District Lieutenant John Garrido, front row,, with offi- cers in 016 who had the chance to enjoy one of her home-cooked meals. going to come home to see their families. I support them 100 percent.”
One of the lucky officers in 016 who has consistently enjoyed Keske’s finger-licking-good meals is Lieutenant John Garrido. When he joined the district in 2013, a colleague mentioned that Keske would cook food for the officers from time to time.
Perhaps Garrido envisioned a woman dropping off dough- nuts and coffee. But Garrido will never forget meeting Keske, who is small in stature but not in personality, for the first time.
“She walks in and fills the room,” he recalled. “She looks like she’s about 4-feet-5, and she explodes with energy. She only has

   42   43   44   45   46