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Archive for October 29th, 2010

Peru marks 25th anniversary of the IV Regional Airport

Posted by wlpo on October 29, 2010

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Standing at the end of a four thousand foot long runway with the occasional buzzing of a plane engine in the distance, Peru officials and more celebrated the dedication of the their crosswind runway and the 25th anniversary of the Illinois Valley Regional Airport.

Joe Mikyska alderman and chairman of the city airport committee explained to a crowd of about 70 Friday afternoon how the airport came to be located in Peru and how many companies use the airport each month.

Mikyska and others including State Senator Gary Dahl and State Representative Frank Mautino said the airport is good for economic development.  Dr. Susan Shea, the director of the Division of Aeronautics for the Illinois Department of Transportation also spoke.

Work on the crosswind runway began in the summer of 2008 and was supposed to be done by that Thanksgiving but there were delays.

Friday’s dedication came a couple of weeks after the 25th anniversary of the dedication of the original north-south runway which is still in use.

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Man Convicted In Starved Rock Murders Stays Behind Bars

Posted by wlpo on October 29, 2010

71 year old Chester Weger had his 15th parole hearing yesterday in Springfield.  And for the 15th time, he was denied parole.

Weger was convicted in 1961 of killing a woman from Riverside.  Prosecutors think he killed two other women at Starved Rock but was only tried for one murder.

As he’s done every year since being La Salle County State’s Attorney, Brian Towne testified against Weger.  Towne spoke to parole officials last week, telling them there’s no new evidence to cast doubt in his guilt.  He also mentioned that Weger shows no remorse.

Despite an initial confession, Weger now claims he’s innocent.  He’ll get another parole hearing next year.

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Weather Service Honoring Peru Weather Observer

Posted by wlpo on October 29, 2010

81 year old Eldon Gunia will be presented with the John Campanius Holm Award for outstanding service in the Cooperative Weather Observer Program.  The award ceremony will happen November 7th at Mario’s Maples Supper Club in Peru.

Gunia is being credited with 39 years of reporting weather observations to the Chicago office of the National Weather Service.  He started taking observations of daily temperature and precipitation in October of 1971 at the Peru Greenhouse.

The award is considered the second most prestigious with the National Weather Service.  Only 26 weather observers across the country receive the award.

The namesake of the award is credited with keeping the first ever weather observations in the United States starting in 1644.

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Bond Set For Somonauk Man Who Injured A Deputy

Posted by wlpo on October 29, 2010

Bond is 100 thousand dollars for a Somonauk man accused of breaking into a house and then injuring a deputy.

Keith Lowrance is being held in the DeKalb County Jail, charged with residential burglary, aggravated battery, criminal damage to state supported property and resisting a peace officer.  He was already on probation for burglary before getting arrested Wednesday.

The DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office took a call Wednesday morning from a man claiming Lowrance broke into his house in rural Hinckley.  When the homeowner arrived, Lowrance allegedly jumped out a second floor window and ran through a tree farm.

With the help of a canine unit, deputies found Lowrance hiding in a culvert.  Things got wild with Lowrance allegedly jumping onto a squad car and kicking the windshield out before fighting with officers.  During the fight, Lowrance and a deputy were both hurt and taken to a hospital where they were treated and released.

Investigators say a canine bit Lowrance in the scuffle after Lowrance went after the dog.

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Fish fry to raise money for Ottawa memorial

Posted by wlpo on October 29, 2010

Local union representatives are raising money for a Radium Girls Memorial in Ottawa.

Laborers’ Local Union 393 is having a Family Fish Fry from 4:30 until 7:30 Friday at the Knights of Columbus hall in Ottawa.  The dinner costs eight dollars a person with all proceeds going to the memorial.

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La Salles holds “Our Hometown Halloween” Saturday

Posted by wlpo on October 29, 2010

Trick-or-Treat and parades are some of the things kids can do in downtown La Salle Saturday.

“Our Hometown Halloween” begins at 11am with a parade at the Knights of Columbus.  Prizes will be awarded for best costumes.

Afterwards, kids will be able to Trick-or-Treat at businesses featuring a bright orange pumpkin.  There will also be games at the K of C and the Lock 16 Visitor’s Center until 2pm.

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A dozen people take out petitions to run for city council in Peru

Posted by wlpo on October 29, 2010

While the General Election on Tuesday is the big talk, about a dozen people in Peru are gearing up for the Consolidated Election next spring.

In the first ward, current alderman Jamey Mertel has taken out a petition but so have Jeff Ballard and Mike Radtke.

In the second ward longtime alderman Jack O’Beirne hasn’t taken out a petition but several others have.  Tim Freed, Bob Borostowski, Jim Hurst and Rodney Perez have taken out petitions.

Third ward alderman Dave Waldorf has indicated he’ll run for re-election and it looks like he’ll be challenged by Joe Witzak and Mary Landsiedel.

In the fourth ward alderman Dave Potthoff and Steve Weberski have taken out petitions.

Petitions can be circulated through December 20.

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Dedication of runway Friday afternoon

Posted by wlpo on October 29, 2010

The crosswind runway at the Illinois Valley Regional Airport has been completed since last September, but Friday it’s being dedicated.

Work on the crosswind runway began in the summer of 2008 and was supposed to be done by that Thanksgiving but there were delays.  It cost $2.6 million, most of which was paid for using federal money.

A dedication of the runway is at 2:30pm Friday at the airport.

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