Daley settles (not entirely) into life as a regular Chicagoan

Shortly before Maggie died, the Daleys moved into a three-bedroom apartment in the Bloomingdale's building at 900 N. Michigan Ave. It was closer to Maggie's doctors than their South Loop town home was, and Daley eventually sold the town home to one of his daughters.

Maggie passed away in their new home, and afterward, he moved into a different unit in the same building, a smaller space free of memories.

He keeps a second office in that building, too, as a partner in his son Patrick's investment firm.

Last Wednesday, Daley turned 71. Ever since he was a kid in the old Irish neighborhood of Bridgeport and had friends over to the house for a party, he has loved his birthday. Still does.

He says he doesn't feel old and that this time of life is "a great phase."

If he's not as powerful as he once was, Rich Daley is still in play. The National Law Journal recently named him among the 100 Most Influential Lawyers in America, noting his connections and that his younger brother, William Daley, might run for governor.

He is also considered a highly eligible bachelor, and he has begun to socialize. He has been seen sharing a meal with the actress Sally Field; with Desiree Rogers, the CEO of Johnson Publishing Co.; and with a doctor he met at the gym. Rumors fly, some of them wrong.

Through it all, he feels that Maggie stays with him.

Every Sunday that he's in town, he goes to the cemetery where she's buried. Her grave is near his mother's and his father's and the grave of his son Kevin, who died at the age of 2.

Alone, early in the morning, he visits, consoled by the belief that in some way they're all still here.

mschmich@tribune.com

CHICAGO

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