Help retired staff member injured abroad

John Cepek

John Cepek and his wife, Charleen.

By Sonya Booth

UIC friends are reaching out to help after a dream vacation turned into a nightmare for John Cepek, retired director of Publications Services, and his wife, Charleen.

Cepek suffered a severe head injury Feb. 27 while visiting Pula, Croatia. His condition requires transfer for advanced treatment to a larger hospital in Munich, Germany, and funds to pay for his medical expenses are needed immediately.

To help his family in this crisis, Cepek’s friends and colleagues established a crowdfunding site.

“John and Char have spent their lives helping other people and now it is their turn to be helped,” said Brenda Russell, professor emerita in the College of Medicine and president of the UIC chapter of the State Universities Annuitants Association.

Cepek, who retired in 2004 after 32 years at UIC, is a board member of the UIC annuitants group. He is a long-time member of PFLAG, an LGBTQ family and ally support organization.

He and his wife were on a much-anticipated cruise of the Adriatic Sea. Earlier that day, in a separate incident, Charleen Cepek had broken her wrist.

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