CHICAGO — A woman who has been going through possessions of her late aunt is hoping to find the family of a Chicago artist from the early 1950s.
The woman, who goes by Rachl Chi Sox online, came across something special while sorting through “boxes and boxes” of her aunt’s items.
She rediscovered two suspected ink portraits of a man in a top hat and what looks to be a young girl looking up at him.
Rachl remembers them hanging on her aunt’s wall when she was young, but they’ve been stored away for several years after they were originally purchased at an art fair.
“I didn’t want to throw them away because they are so cool,” Rachl said.
In the bottom right hand corner of the second drawing, it is signed “Emily Pucka ’52.”
So, she decided to take the portraits to the “Forgotten Chicago” Facebook group — which boasts over 200,000 members interested in Chicago history.
Quickly, numerous people reached out to Rachl to try to help find the artist. Within a few hours, Rachl had more of an idea on who Emily Pucka was.
Group members were able to find her suspected obituary with the married name Gorney. In it, the 2010 obituary said Emily attended Kelly High School, located in Brighton Park.
“She was only 25 years old,” Rachl said. “A budding artist, maybe.”
Furthermore, group members discovered she potentially lived near 41st Street and Sacramento Avenue.
Even though the ink portraits hold some of her own family memories, Rachl is hoping to find Emily’s family.
“A lot of people don’t know their great-grandparents or grandparents,” Rachl said. “To have something that your grandma made and that she was proud of, that would be special.”
She’s looking for her children listed in the 2010 obituary; Sanford Gorney, of Lapeer, Michigan, Scott Gorney, of Frankfort, Illinois, and Amy Maas of Wanatah, Indiana. At the time of her death, her husband James was alive, according to her obituary.
Emily passed away in Madison, Wisconsin after living with her husband in Chicago until their retirement, her obituary states. She retired in the area of New Glarus, Wisconsin.
So far, Rachl hasn’t been able to find contact information for her family and hopes someone in the area can connect her.
Anyone who may be able to connect Rachl can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.