North Side hardware store closing its doors after 41 years

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Cas Hardware has been a staple in the Andersonville community for more than 40 years.

Owner Cornel Ladan, Jr., who goes by Junior, has been there every step of the way.

"The people are really nice you know," Junior said. "I try to help them as much as I can."

He's got a little bit of everything, from nuts and bolts to locks and pipes.

"Whatever they need, I try to get it for them," Junior added.

At the end of February, however, that will change as the hardware store's doors will close for good.

"I feel sorry that I have to leave because the customers they say 'Oh you should not close, we need you,' Junior said. "I say well it's time to stop working. I'm 75 years old, that's enough."

He made the announcement last fall. Since then, people around the neighborhood have come around to say goodbye.

Tom White has been going to Cas Hardware for more than 20 years. He owns the antique store a couple of doors down and is sad to see Junior go.

"These guys have always represented to me what Andersonville is about," White said. "I'm thrilled that he's retiring and just sad for the rest of us. "

Over the years, Ladan Junior has done his fair share of work, from copying keys to fixing lamps. He said he's fixed more than 3,000 of them in the last five years.

When you pass the store, you'll see the front window plastered with 50% closing signs. If you walk in, you'll find Junior, sitting in the same spot he's been in for the past 41 years.

Jalyn Henderson is a Community Journalist at ABC 7 Chicago. She tells stories on the north side of Chicago in neighborhoods like Uptown, Edgewater, Ravenswood, Lincoln Square, West Ridge and Rogers Park. If you have a story to share in these neighborhoods you can send an email to
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