Family honors Niles man by continuing his holiday tradition

Published 12:12 am Thursday, December 18, 2003

By By JAMES COLLINS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- The late Chuck Bailey would not have wanted anything more this holiday season than to see his house lit up and decorated for Christmas.
Every year, the Niles resident would put a tremendous amount of time and effort into decorating his house at 2116 Lewis Drive.
She said this was an annual event that the neighborhood always looked forward to.
Last year, Bailey was in the final stages of renal failure and heart disease and he was unable to decorate the house for the first time in years.
When Bailey passed away on Aug. 10, his family wanted to do something special to remember him.
She said it would not be possible to duplicate Bailey's work because of his dedication and great attention to detail.
With the help of his three daughters and his grandchildren, the decorations were pulled out of the shed and displayed for one final Christmas.
When driving by the house, it is impossible to not slow down and admire the festive decorations.
The perimeter of the property is surrounded by a fence-like arrangement of multi-color lights.
The front yard is peppered with a cast of Christmas characters ranging from Santa and his reindeer to little drummer boys and penguins.
Some of the characters are wooden figures that were hand carved by Bailey and the others are of the store-bought plastic variety.
The display even features holiday music played from the same 8-track player that Bailey incorporated into his Christmas scenes.
One of the only differences in this year's tribute is a large sign in the front yard that reads: "For his work through the years, to bring Christmas cheers. Since he's with God above, we dedicate this with love. In memory of Chuck Bailey, April 14, 1929-August 10, 2003. Our dad, grandpa, husband, and friend."
Bailey was not a person who did this for compliments and attention.
His remaining family wants nothing more than to share his decorations with the rest of the community for one last Christmas.