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Today's News

  • John Sefton takes Honor Flight trip

    When it was learned that World War II veteran John C. Sefton was honored as a participant of the Central Illinois Honor Flight to Washington D.C., on Oct. 14, a request was made to him for a report of the event.

    John modestly, but graciously, agreed to meet in his home in Sefton, which is just across the road from where he was born 85 years ago. John grew up in a two-story house that no longer stands.

  • Don't ride Motown horse too long

    Vandalia’s city administrator last Tuesday night rolled out a number of budget cuts that he was proposing in light of shrinking surpluses and decreasing revenues.

    With that in mind, we hope that the city council takes a long, hard look at the request for an extension being requested for the proposed $300-million sports and entertainment complex.

  • Nurse Mary tells her Civil War stories

    “As a small child, I remember looking up at her and thinking that she was as tall as a tree, especially since she wore long dresses.”

    This comment by her great-granddaughter, Joyce Hamilton, added to the aura of Mary Wren Sharp, who chose to be with her husband during the Civil War, and joined the Seventh Illinois Cavalry as a nurse.

  • Vandalia finishes sixth at St. Anthony Tournament

    In the first night of the St. Anthony’s Tournament, Vandalia didn’t put up much of a fight against Effingham, losing 60-35.

    The Vandals knew it wouldn’t get any easier on night two, as they fell to host school St. Anthony, 59-30.

  • Patoka defeats Ramsey to win Thanksgiving tourney

    The day before Thanksgiving, it was brother against brother for the first of three meetings this season between Patoka, coached by Joe Eddy, and Ramsey, coached by Bill Eddy.

    It would be Joe Eddy who would come out on top in the first Fayette County civil war of the season, as Patoka won 55-49.

    Drew Baldrige scored 23 points and was 9-for-16 from the free-throw line for the Warriors.

    Andy Carter of Ramsey had a season-high 26 points as he drained four three-pointers.

  • South Central edges Brownstown to start season 4-0, blows out Vandalia

    Consistent play by Brownstown and poor shooting early on by South Central almost gave the Lady Cougars their first loss of the season and a huge upset by Brownstown.

    South Central made only one of five shots in the first quarter of Monday night’s game against Brownstown. All five attempts were put up by Audrey Matheny. The Bombers' shooting was near-perfect as they hit four of five shots from the field, taking a 12-2 lead after the first quarter.

  • City committee supports budget revisions, water rate increase

    A number of revisions to the city of Vandalia's budget for the current fiscal year will take effect on Tuesday following a committee meeting on Tuesday.

    At a meeting on Tuesday evening, the council’s personnel, finance and insurance committee also recommended that the council vote on an increase in water rates.

    However, that committee ¬ – after meeting in closed session for about an hour ¬– voted not to recommend that the council consider at this time furlough days for city employees.

  • Wren Bridge was gathering area for years

    Gary Dycus, from New York City, an occasional Leader-Union reader, e-mailed me recently about a story in his family where his grandmother (Susan Jane Nodine Fair) sold a pig in order to buy her daughter, Lena, material for a silk dress to wear to a special Wren Bridge fish fry. The dress was green and Lena had gorgeous red hair.

    Gary wanted to know who organized this social occasion, how long it ran, how it was advertised, what the people did, what the entertainment was and whether pictures survive.

  • Many reasons to give thanks

    With the economic conditions that we’ve endured in recent months, getting in a Thanksgiving mood may take a little work this year.

    But it shouldn’t.

    In an ideal world, gratitude should be our natural response to the many things we DO have – regardless of our circumstances and the things we DON’T have. Granted, that’s not an easy position to take. Yet, it’s a good approach that produces an attitude of gratitude.

    Here in Vandalia, we have many things for which we should be thankful:

  • Progress on U.S. Route 51 expansion plans explained

    It will still be some time before Fayette County residents will see U.S. Route 51 being expanded to four lanes, but they do now have a better idea of where the four lanes will run.

    At public meetings last week, Illinois Department of Transportation officials and representatives of Clark Dietz Inc., a Champaign engineering firm partnering with IDOT on the Route 51 expansion, presented preliminary alignments showing the likely paths of the four-lane roadway.