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Today's News

  • Brad Etcheson wrote journal as he fought cancer

    Brad Etcheson died on Feb. 19, 1998, at the age of 42, following a 2 -year battle with cancer. During this battle, he kept a journal, filling five notebooks to record what he came to refer as his Spiritual Biography.

    During school years, Brad excelled in all sports, and later became an avid golfer. He later played with a group of older men that was affectionately called The Wobblys.

  • Security tightened for city meetings

    A week after stricter security measures were put in place at the Fayette County Courthouse, and about three weeks after five people were fatally shot in a public meeting in Missouri, the city of Vandalia announced tighter security practices for its city council meetings.

    As the council met for the first time in the new city hall on Tuesday, Mayor Rick Gottman announced the new security measures.

    Police Chief Larry Eason, who serves as sergeant-at-arms for council meetings, now sits at a desk facing the entrance to council chambers.

  • Closed campus for VCHS OK'd

    Just a week after holding a public roundtable discussion on the topic, the Vandalia Board of Education on Tuesday passed, without discussion, a proposal to close the lunch hour at Vandalia Community High School.

    That move to a closed campus at noon brings the local district into line with all other districts in Fayette, Bond and Effingham counties.

    The change will be effective with the start of the school year next fall.

  • New feature on Web site allows comments

    Except for major issues such as bond issues, we receive very little feedback from people in the community on those everyday issues that are covered in the pages of our newspaper. Thats likely to change through a new feature offered on our Web site.

    As you may know, our parent company, Landmark Community Newspapers, has provided a new Web site format for us and other LCNI newspapers. The work to improve our Web sites is ongoing.

  • BHS cheerleaders win state title

    The Brownstown High School cheerleading squad is proof positive that perseverance pays off.

    Early in the school year, the Bombers set an ambitious goal of advancing to the 2008 Illinois Cheerleading Coaches Association state finals.

    But it looked like they might not even get a chance to compete in the preliminary competition necessary to qualify for state, as the first two regionals the Bombers signed up for were cancelled.

    Undeterred, the Bombers finally found a venue to showcase their talents at the Highland Regional.

  • Vandals come up a little short in 3 O.T. thriller

    The Vandalia boys basketball team pushed a 17-victory Roxana squad to the edge of the edge on the Shells' Senior Night.

    The host team escaped in a triple-overtime thriller, however, 68-65.

    Vandalia twice got big game-tying 3-point shots from Brenden Wasmuth, forcing the second and third overtimes. But the Vandals were unable to get a third game-tying 3-pointer to fall at the end of the third O.T., as a pair of good looks from beyond the arc were off the mark.

  • Eagles edge Bombers in 2 OT thriller

    With his team up two points with 11 seconds remaining Saturday night at St. Elmo, Brownstown forward Jared Winters was overcome by a foreboding sense of deja vu.

    But to the Bomber sophomore's credit, he tried to go the diplomatic route in an attempt to stave it off.

    "Winters came up to me and said, 'Do us a favor and try not to hit a last-second shot,'" said St. Elmo senior Colton Booher.

    Unfortunately for the Bombers, Booher was not about to oblige in the final home game of his career.

  • Hemminghaus, Foster to make state debuts

    The Vandalia wrestling team's five state-tournament veterans have offered up a little advice to teammates Curtis Hemminghaus and Alex Foster as they get set to make their state-tournament debuts Friday.

    "They just said, 'Don't look up,'" said Hemminghaus, refering to the potentially overwhelming scene that will greet him when he hit the mats at the 16,000-plus seat Assembly Hall.

    "And I'm not going to look up," Hemminghaus added.

  • Vandals' five sectional champs have state experience

    If experience is everything, the Vandalia wrestling team could be in for a record-setting weekend at the IHSA Class A Individual State Wrestling Tournament.

    The Vandals are not only sending a whopping seven grapplers to Assembly Hall this weekend - they're sending five salty veteran wrestlers with a combined 10 state tournaments under their belts.

    That experience factor could go a long way toward helping the Vandals break last year's program record of three state medalists.

  • Seven Vandals qualify for state

    Most high school programs could make the trip to the IHSA Class A Individual Wrestling Tournament in a Yugo.

    The Vandalia wrestling program might have to take a bus.

    The Vandals came up just one wrestler shy of tying the program record for individual state qualifiers, as half of the team's starting lineup qualified for state Saturday by placing in the top three in their weight divisions at the Robinson Sectional.