ReelChicago is saddened to announce that our friend and longtime associate, Rod O’Connor, passed on July 27. O’Connor, 53, succumbed to complications involving a blood clot in his lungs.
A native of Galesburg, IL, Rod held several positions at Screen Magazine, the publication that Ruth Ratny launched prior to founding ReelChicago, in the late 90s and early 2000s.
He began as an intern while he was a student at Columbia College and remained there for more than a decade after graduating with a BA in Advertising / Marketing.
His responsibilities grew from front desk reception to classified manager. He also helped the display advertising departments for the magazine and the annual Production Bible, and made substantial contributions to the planning and coordination of events like the yearly Schmoozarama and the Monday Night Football networking get-togethers.
In 2004, relocated to Nashville to accept a position with Dell Computer.
Friends and coworkers knew Rod as an abundantly good-natured individual who always lent a hand to personal and professional associates in need. He enjoyed an especially close relationship with Ruth Ratny, recalling that, “I found Ruth a bit tough at first but soon realized she was fair and just and over the years came to love her.”
Rod will also be remembered as one of the greatest friends that cats ever had. According to his obituary, “(He) loved animals and had several cats including a special rescue cat he named Faith.”
The family asks that any donations in Rod’s name be made to Walden’s Puddle Wildlife Center of Greater Nashville.