The installation of a mural to raise awareness of two missing Park Forest women will halt traffic on Orchard Drive Sunday.
Chicago-based artist Damon Reed will paint likenesses of Jerrica Laws and Brenda Gonzalez-Jackson on the façade of the Old Plank Trail underpass along Orchard Drive between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
Drivers in Park Forest should expect an increase in traffic due to the temporary street closure and will need to use an alternate route if they normally travel along Orchard Drive between North Street and Indiana Street.
"We will have personnel stationed at [the intersections of] Orchard and North Street, and Orchard and Indiana Street," said Park Forest Deputy Police Chief Brian Rzyski. "Heavier traffic is expected on North, Illinois, and Indiana streets, [as people are going through the detours.]
Rzyski says the best alternate route is taking Western Avenue which runs almost parallel to Orchard Drive.
Park Forest Village Manager Tom Mick says the purpose of the mural is two-fold: honoring the two women, and raising awareness.
"The idea is to continue to promote public awareness that we have two unsolved missing person cases," said Mick. "This mural will serve as a reminder that we have two unsolved cases. Additionally, if anyone happens to come across any conversation or information that may lead to solving either one of these cases, they should contact the Park Forest Police Department."
Laws was last seen walking in the 200 block of Lee Street in Park Forest on Aug. 16, 2015 at 7 p.m. Laws is an African-American female, 31 years of age, 5'2" tall, weighing 140 pounds, with a single piercing in each ear.
Gonzalez-Jackson was last seen in the late evening hours of Jan. 3, 2016 when a relative dropped her off at her home in the 200 block of Arcadia Street in Park Forest. Gonzalez-Jackson is a Hispanic female, 37 years of age, five feet tall, 125 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. She has a scar on her upper chest and star tattoos on both sides of her neck, a heart tattooed on her ring finger, and a tattoo that says “Michael” on her left inner wrist.
Efforts to locate both women have turned up few leads since their disappearance.
Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Laws or Gonzalez-Jackson is asked to call the Park Forest Police Department Investigations Division at 708-748-1309.