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Monday funeral set for Lake County PADS director

PADS Executive Director Cathy Curran HighlPark PADS Crisis Services walk HighlPark. | Sun-Times Photo

PADS Executive Director Cathy Curran of Highland Park at the PADS Crisis Services walk in Highland Park. | Sun-Times Photo

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Updated: November 28, 2012 6:09AM

Funeral services have been set for Cathy Curran, executive director of PADS Lake County.

Curran, 61, of Highland Park, died Wednesday at Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital after experiencing chest pains at the PADS headquarters in North Chicago.

“She touched so many lives and she will be greatly missed,” said Suzanne Christensen, PADS Lake County director of administration.

A funeral will be held at 12:15 p.m. Monday, Oct. 29, at the chapel at Shalom Memorial Park, 1700 W. Rand Road, Arlington Heights. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to PADS Lake County, P.O. Box 428, North Chicago, IL 60064.

According to the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, Curran, who had run PADS since 2002, and her staff met with Lake County legislators and traveled to Springfield regularly in recent years to stop a planned $4.7 million cutback in state funding to shelters across Illinois.

Curran, who was married and a mother of three sons, led a successful effort to place the chronically homeless in permanent supportive housing. She also pushed for funding and volunteers for the county’s emergency overnight shelter system, now in its 25th season.

Lake County Board member Mary Ross Cunningham of Waukegan, who volunteers for the county’s annual homeless count, taken each winter, said she once called Curran at 2 a.m. after coming across a young woman with a baby who had nowhere to stay.

“Not only did she pick up, she said ‘Bring them right in,’” Cunningham said. “Her heart was for the people.”

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