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Trinity Services board member honored for 50 years of service

Art Dykstra: ‘his heart went out to the people we serve.’

Trinity Services in New Lenox honored current board chairman Raymond D. McShane for 50 years of service at its 33rd annual “Better Together” dinner dance on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, at The Odyssey in Tinley Park. Ray is pictured with his wife Linda McShane.

Trinity Services honored board chairman Raymond D. McShane for 50 years of service at its 33rd annual “Better Together” dinner dance Saturday at The Odyssey in Tinley Park.

McShane, 79, of Channahon never imagined in those early years he’d serve so long. At the time, McShane was just helping out a friend.

McShane was 29 when Louis Moroni, a board member for Trinity Services at the bank where McShane worked, wanted to see if the bank might donate candy. Moroni visited Trinity Services clients each year as Santa Claus.

Moroni invited McShane to accompany him to Trinity Services to help distribute candy at the four-room schoolhouse on Gouger Road in New Lenox, which he did for a couple of years, McShane said. It was the first time McShane encountered a room filled with people with disabilities, he said.

“It felt good that we were doing something good,” McShane. “When we saw the smiles on their faces ... it was just a good feeling.”

Then one day, Moroni called McShane, told him he was retiring and moving to Arizona, and then asked McShane to take his place on the board.

“I said, ‘Well, all right.’ ” McShane said. “So that’s how it all started. I didn’t think I’d be there that long.”

Trinity Services in New Lenox honored current board chairman Raymond D. McShane for 50 years of service at its 33rd annual “Better Together” dinner dance on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, at The Odyssey in Tinley Park. Pictured are members of McShane's family. They are (from left, standing): Tony Vari, Kadie McShane, Ray McShane, Jr., Raymond D. McShane, Lynda McShane, Cathey Koerner, Sue Vari and Craig Koerner, and (from left, crouching): : Emily Mepham, Lauren Vari, Sarah Vari, Christin Vari and Irene Huffman.

McShane already was a longtime board member when Trinity Services hired Art Dykstra as its president and chief executive officer in 1987. Dykstra, who retired at the end of 2017 and is now CEO of the Trinity Foundation, called McShane “a good guy.”

“Both he and his wife, Linda, are both community-minded and interested in giving back to the community,” Dykstra said. “When he came onto the board, he didn’t really know about people with intellectual disabilities. But I think his heart went out to the people we serve.”

Dykstra said McShane also was someone he could personally count on.

“When I started, things were not very rosy,” Dykstra said. “We had money problems. We had a lot of difficulties. Ray was one of the board members. He wasn’t an officer at the time. He’d swing by to ask how things were going and how he could be helpful.”

Trinity Services in New Lenox honored current board chairman Raymond D. McShane (center) for 50 years of service at its 33rd annual “Better Together” dinner dance on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, at The Odyssey in Tinley Park. Ray is pictured with his wife Linda McShane (left) and Thane A. Dykstra (right), Trinity Services president and CEO.

Dykstra said he wasn’t from Joliet, but most of Trinity Services’ programs at the time were Joliet-based.

“So he connected me with people,” Dykstra said. “His heart went out to people and stayed there. He really does care.”

McShane brought several strong qualities to his service: analytical thinking, the asking of the right questions and plenty of encouragement, Dykstra said.

“When we brought something up, he always wanted to know how we would achieve that and how that would work. I always appreciated that,” Dykstra said. And I’d call him one of the most gifted encouragers I have come across. … When you’re around encouragers, they elevate you. He was always so good to me, a source of stability. … He’s been a blessing to me, my family and to Trinity. For that, I am grateful.”

McShane, who said he’s served as board chairman for the past 15 years, said he’s happy to continue serving Trinity Services as long as Trinity is happy with his service. Nor does he mind the work involved.

“It makes you feel good when you see the outcome,” McShane said.

McShane said he’s proud of Trinity Service’s new Studio 22. Trinity converted its former warehouse into a creative space for clients to engage in a variety of diverse activities, including recording music, learning yoga, and making and bottling soda.

He said he’s proud of the ROXY Lockport, the theater Trinity Services bought in 1995 for programs and then renovated in 2017.

McShane said he is also proud of Prairie Trail at The Landings in New Lenox, the housing community Trinity Services opened in May for adults with disabilities.

A new housing community for adults with disabilities has opened in New Lenox: Prairie Trail at the Landings. Features include 22 one-bedroom and three-bedroom units with their own bathroom, kitchen, living space and storage. Each floor has its own washer and dryer, and the second floor has a recreation area that includes a pool table. Trinity Services staff have offices on the first floor to help support residents.

For anyone who wants to get involved, Trinity Services needs more employees, he said.

“We lost some when the warehouses came to town,” McShane said. “Of course, we could always use financial support.”

McShane was humbled at being honored Sept. 24 and said the entire dinner dance event “was real nice.”

“Well-attended, too,” he said.

For information and to donate, visit trinityservices.org.

Trinity Services honored current board chairman Raymond D. McShane for 50 years of service at its 33rd annual “Better Together” dinner dance on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, at The Odyssey in Tinley Park. Pictured, from left, are Trinity Services board of directors Barbara Hall, Jan Agazzi, Chris Falvey, Greg Geuther, Raymond D. McShane, Bob Libman, Art Dykstra and Thane A. Dykstra.