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Today's News

  • Aunt Frieda's trunk yields mysterious portrait

    Following years of living away from Fayette County, my dads oldest sister, Frieda Torbeck, decided it was time to return to her roots in St. Paul. She had left the area as a teenager, joining a neighborhood friend in a domestic job in northern Illinois.

    Many of the young women who went to the cities to work as housemaids and nursemaids, returned home, married and raised families, their grandchildren now living on the old family farms. But not Frieda.

    She found a position with a family whose mother had died and became housekeeper, looking after two children.

  • Wodtka's successor will likely be on the job on Friday

    When the woman who has served as Fayette County's circuit clerk for seven terms retires at the end of the day on Thursday, she doesn't know who will be serving as her temporary replacement.

    But that person is expected to be on the job the next morning.

    Marsha Wodtka is retiring on Thursday after 28 years as this countys circuit clerk. She announced her plans to retire in July of last year.

  • Meth maker gets 10 years; husband's trial is this week

    Five days before her husband went to trial on a charge alleging the manufacture of methamphetamine, a rural Beecher City woman pleaded guilty to that offense.

    Diana L. Griffith, 47, accepted a 10-year prison sentence in pleading guilty last Wednesday in Fayette County Circuit Court.

    In accepting a plea bargain, Griffith pleaded guilty to the manufacture of less than 400 grams of methamphetamine.

    Griffith and her husband, Charles E. Griffith, 48, were arrested on methamphetamine manufacture charges after a raid on their residence by the Fayette County Sheriffs Office.

  • St. Elmo-Brownstown reorganization committee making progress

    The committee working to prepare for a referendum on the reorganization of the St. Elmo and Brownstown school districts has essentially gone as far as it can without legal counsel.

    So, when it meets again in two weeks, the priority of that 10-member committee is hiring an attorney who will guide them through the steps required to get the reorganization issue on next Aprils ballot.

    The 10-member committee is headed up by Clint Feezel of the Brownstown district and Dean Buzzard of the St. Elmo district.

  • First National acquires Mulberry Grove, Greenville banks

    Ernie Chappel, president of The First National Bank of Vandalia, and Preston Smith, president of The First National Bank of Mulberry Grove, announced on Tuesday that the two institutions have reached an agreement by which First National Bank of Vandalia will purchase The First National Banking Centers located in Mulberry Grove and Greenville.

    In that acquisition, The First National Bank of Vandalia will acquire the deposits and certain assets, including loans, of the two Bond County banks.

  • Open house Thursday for cancer center at FCH

    Where can you find answers about cancer, even when the resources seem out of reach? The American Cancer Society recognizes the need for cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers to have access to up-to-date information on cancer and is providing that information and support through its local Patient Resource Center at Fayette County Hospital. A grand opening celebration open house will be held Thursday, July 31, from 1 3 p.m. Area residents are invited to stop by, enjoy refreshments and learn about the variety of help available to cancer patients and their families.

  • Freight wins first game at state tourney

    Guaranteed Air Freight advanced in the winner's bracket of the state fastpitch softball tournament in Altamont on Saturday.

    Nick Casey slammed two home runs as the Freight slammed Radom 16-0 in a five-inning contest.

    Brad Sturdy got the win for the Freight, who now play at 10:45 a.m. on Sunday.

  • Vandalia man gets 16 years for sex crimes

    A Vandalia man convicted in May on three charges alleging sex with a minor was sentenced to 16 years in prison on Tuesday.

    A Fayette County jury found Jonathan L. Matthews, 20, guilty on May 29 of two counts of predatory criminal sexual assault of a child and one count aggravated criminal sexual abuse. The jury deliberated for 90 minutes before returning the three guilty verdicts.

    The felony charges filed by Fayette County States Attorney Stephen Friedel in February alleged that the sex offenses occurred between April 1 and Dec. 27 of last year.

  • Freight take John Heather Memorial title again

    The Vandalia Guaranteed Air Freight softball team saw its quest for perfection evaporate in the blistering sun Sunday in the final game of the John Heather Tournament.

    But despite watching a 7-3 seventh-inning lead slip away in an eventual 9-8 extra-inning loss to Lee's Sports Falcons, the Freight can thank dominating play in their prior three games for a second-straight tournament title.

  • 'Red Ninjas' still alive in district tournament

    It was a debacle in every sense of the word.

    Despite 16 strikeouts by Jared Winters, the Post 95 Senior American Legion baseball team fell into the loser's bracket of the 23rd District East Division Tournament Saturday, as seven errors led to a 7-5 loss to Newton.

    Not many teams would be able to bounce back from such a discouraging defeat.

    But not many teams have dubbed themselves "The Red Ninjas."