Police suspect foul play in death of Rice teacher

  • Written by Jeff Vorva

  An icon from Brother Rice High School was found dead in his Orland Park home on Tuesday and police are investigating the possibility of foul play.
  Al Filan, 62, a longtime business teacher at the school and soccer coach in the area, was found dead at his Orland Park home in the 9400 block of Georgetown Square and multiple media reports say that the Orland Park Police Department is handing it off to the South Suburban Major Crimes Task Force for further investigation.
  “We don’t want to leave any stone unturned if there is any possibility [of] foul play,” Orland Park Commander John Keating told Sun-Times Media. I can’t confirm [it is a homicide]. It’s still classified as a death investigation at this point…’’
  An autopsy was scheduled for Wednesday, after The Regional Publishing deadline.
  A statement from Brother Rice said that Filan taught at the school for more than 39 years and “touched the lives of thousands of students.”
  Filan was also a veteran soccer coach and was a former head coach and assistant at Andrew High School in Tinley Park.
  Orland Hills’ Tim Neighbors, who was a goalie coach for Filan at Andrew for a couple of years, was shocked to hear the news.
  “One of my sons called us,” Neighbors said. “We were like ‘holy cow!’ You know people get up in age could have a heart attack or something like that. He was in his 60s. But to find out if it was foul play, I can’t believe it.’’
  Neighbors’ sons, Greg and Tim, played for Andrew in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
  “Al was more of a quiet coach — but like all of us he had him moments when he got loud,” Neighbors said. “And I’ll tell you what — he always faced the stiffest competition. He never backed down from a challenge and the teams we played were loaded.’’
  Marist High School held a moment of silence for Filan before the boys basketball game between the RedHawks and Brother Rice on Tuesday night.