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Archive for September 26th, 2012

Ottawa to compete to be greener

Posted by wlpo on September 26, 2012

The gardens in Ottawa’s Washington Park are impressive and the downtown enjoys a splash of color from hanging flower baskets.  But Mayor Bob Eschbach thinks some friendly competition could bring the town together while making it greener.

Eschbach announced Wednesday that Ottawa will be entering the America in Bloom competition. Eschbach says it’s about encouraging local people, churches, and businesses in becoming involved in the greening of Ottawa.

Two women from Ottawa agreed to chair the project in Ottawa and International Titanium Powder has given the city $10,000 to be their sponsor.

Escbach says judges will visit town next June or July.  They’ll be judged on six categories including landscaping, environment, overall appearance, and urban forest.

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Voting Starts For November Election

Posted by wlpo on September 26, 2012

Excited to vote in the upcoming election? The wait is over.

You can now vote absentee in person or by mail for the November 6th election.  Absentee voting in person is done at county clerk offices.

October 22nd is the first day for early voting.  The last day to register to vote in the November 6th election is October 9th.

The last presidential election in 2008 had a 69 percent voter turnout in La Salle County.

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Area Bed And Breakfast Developer Dies

Posted by wlpo on September 26, 2012

A woman who played a big part in Utica’s tourism scene has died.

67 year old Dorelle Denman died Tuesday in Peoria.  She ran both the Landers House bed and breakfast and Willows Hotel in Utica.

Before opening the Utica businesses, Denman made news by being part of an investment group that bought the “halfway house” and land around it along Dee Bennett Road.  The state eventually stepped in and stopped development by Denman because of its surrounding the Kaskaskia Indian village.

Service details for Dorelle Denman can be heard during AM 1220 WLPO’s In Memoriam.

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Tractor accident kills a man from Leland

Posted by wlpo on September 26, 2012

Farming is dangerous, even if you have years of experience.  An 81-year-old man was killed after he became trapped under the front tire of a farm tractor.

Investigators say Mervin Baker of Leland was likely trying to jump-start the tractor when he became trapped Tuesday afternoon in a field in Adams Township.

Rescuers tried to save him and a helicopter from Rockford Memorial Hospital was called but Baker was pronounced dead at the scene.

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Oglesby man accused of sexual abuse

Posted by wlpo on September 26, 2012

A sexual abuse charge for a convicted felon that’s been living in Oglesby.  A grand jury yesterday Tuesday 30-year-old Patrick Thomas for aggravated criminal sexual abuse.

Thomas was arrested earlier this month after a mother called the police because her 13-year-old daughter wouldn’t come home.  At the time, officers said Thomas gave them a hard time, had given alcohol to the girl and had a weapon even though he was a felon.

Thomas was released from prison on paroled in July.  He had been serving a four-year sentence for aggravated domestic battery.

Prior to that, he had done time for theft, possession of a controlled substance and a gun charge.

Thomas is being held in the La Salle County Jail with his bond at $250,000.

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Marseilles woman’s disappearance remains unsolved

Posted by wlpo on September 26, 2012

Two years ago Wednesday, Karen McGovern of Seneca left a house party in Marseilles likely headed back home.  She never made it.

State Police Agent Chris Novotney says that her disappearance remains a top priority.  He say’s they’re just waiting for that “one big break”.

McGovern was reported missing by her mom, a full month after she was last seen.  Novotney says McGovern’s husband refuses to cooperate with police.  This has kept officers from giving McGovern’s husband a polygraph test.  It’s also kept them from getting a warrant to search his home in Seneca.

Novotney says people at the house party where Karen McGovern was last seen have all talked with police.  McGovern’s grown daughter has also cooperated.

Karen McGovern would be 55 years old today.  She’s white, 5 feet 4, 145 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes.

If you have any information, call the Illinois State Police in La Salle or Seneca Police Department.

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City and park foundation agree on naming rights

Posted by wlpo on September 26, 2012

Much of the money being used to develop La Salle Rotary Park has come from donations.  And when you donate a lot of money or time you could have a feature of the park named for a person or organization.

The La Salle Rotary Park Foundation and the city have agreed to name the first soccer field for John R. Skinner, Jr.  Skinner was an operating engineer who was killed in an accident years ago.  Local 150 has donated much labor for the park.

A shelter near the soccer field will be named for former Fire Chief Bill Bacidore.  A larger shelter will be named the Rotary International Shelter.  A shelter near the dog park will be named after former Rotarian Dick Cranford.

The park hasn’t opened yet but just last weekend volunteers were installing a playground.

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