Mayor Daley resting comfortably in Chicago hospital ICU, spokesperson says

February 2, 2014 (CHICAGO)

The former mayor became ill Friday afternoon during a conference he was attending in Scottsdale Arizona with members of his law firm.

Daley continued to feel ill and became disoriented when he boarded the place home. Upon his arrival back in Chicago, his family had an ambulance waiting for him. Daley was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital on Friday night and has been in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) ever since.

While one publication labeled Daley's ailments as stroke like symptoms, his spokesperson Jackie Heard says not one doctor or family member has described his condition that way. Heard insists Daley is in ICU as a matter of privacy.

The mayor has kept a very active schedule since he stepped down as mayor in 2011 after 22 years on the job. While he has been hospitalized a few times during the past 15 years, Daley is known to be in very good physical shape.

During a press conference on minimum wage Sunday, Illinois Senator Dick Durbin wished his friend well.

"My thoughts and prayers are with him," Durbin said. "We belong to the same parish and he was mentioned this morning as one of our intentions as mass, so we're pulling for him and wishing him the best. He's a tough cookie, I think he'll bounce back and I'm looking forward to it."

Daley was admitted to a Chicago hospital Friday at the insistance of his family after falling ill on a business trip to Arizona for Katten Muchin Rosenman law firm. On his flight back to Chicago, he felt disoriented but was able to walk off of the plane and into a waiting ambulance.

The former mayor was hospitalized at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for testing and it could be a few more days before he is released.

Those close to the mayor were saying Sunday that whatever caused Daley to feel ill and disoriented did not appear serious, but they want to let the doctors get the test results before speculating.

He is alert and has been receiving guests in the hospital, Heard said.

Heard was Daley's longtime spokeswoman when he was mayor and now is a spokeswoman at the law firm where Daley works. The health scare came on the same day Daley's nephew, Richard Vanecko, pleaded guilty to a felony charge of involuntary manslaughter in David Koschman's killing.

The 71-year-old former mayor has hardly slowed down since leaving office in 2011.

After serving as Chicago's mayor for six terms he now fills his time working at a law firm and as a senior fellow at the University of Chicago.

"I wish Mayor Richard Daley a swift recovery, we're all praying for him,'' said Governor Quinn in a statement.

The former mayor had few medical concerns during his 22 years in office.

He was last hospitalized in December of 2002 with flu symptoms including severe dehydration.

While he was there, doctors discovered Daley had an irregular heartbeat or arrhythmia and high blood pressure and was given medication. Earlier that year, Daley was hospitalized after he lost his balance and felt light headed at a restaurant. Doctors attributed it to cramps from exercising. In 2011, doctors did extensive tests after Daley complained of chest pain, but they found no blockage.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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