Frank J. Jirka Jr., the grandson of Chicago Mayor Anton Cermak, served as a lieutenant in the
Navy. He was awarded the Silver Star and the Purple Heart after becoming wounded in the Battle
of Iwo Jima, a battle that cost him both legs.
Jirka was a third-generation physician and opened his own practice in 1954. He served as
President of the American Medical Association (AMA) among other titles in the Illinois State
Medical Society, the Chicago Medical Society, the Suburban Cook County Tuberculosis
Sanitarium District, and the Governor’s Committee on Employment of the Handicapped in the
State of Illinois.
“You would always see Frank sitting in at our meetings,” said Neil Winston, chairman of the council
at the Chicago Medical Society. “He was always encouraging diversity and encouraging women
physicians to get involved.” (Chicago Tribune)