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Columns

  • Vandalia Memories
  • A murder that was never solved

    The case began with a telephone call to the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office in early December 1962.
    Lyle McDonald, the newly elected sheriff, took the call and was asked whether a loss claim for a wallet found in a schoolyard near Herrick had been made. The wallet contained $500 and belonged to a man named Tony O’Dell.
    The caller said he did not want to get involved, but the sheriff should check some schoolhouse wells in the Herrick area for a body.

  • Hale taught others during WWII

    “Oh, but I wasn’t in the fighting” was the response Aviation Chief Radio Technician Wayne Hale gave me when I told him he was the subject of my Veterans Day column.

  • Vandalia Memories
  • The Way We Were

    20 Years Ago

    1996 – The Vandalia City Council voted to pay $260,000 for 26.08 acres of land east of Owens-Brockway and south of John Crane, with plans to give part of that land to Signature Label to retain the local industry.
    The Vandalia Community High School band and band instructor Sean Reed-Bippen, went to the Vandalia Moose Lodge to record their halftime show for a compact disc. VCHS was one of seven schools chosen for the CD.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week's photo: This young girl, pictured as a seventh-grader at Evans School 64 years ago at the age of 13, has lived in and around Vandalia for 77 years.

    Do you know her? If so, call our office at 283-3374 by 5 p.m. next Monday.
    Last week's photo: Janet Sue Betcher.
    Identifying her were: Lou and Martha Turner.
    This week’s Scrambler: snitis no eofsylru; enrev tmeitai.
    Can you unscramble it? If so, call The Leader-Union, 283-3374, by 5 p.m. next Monday.

  • The Way We Were

    20 Years Ago

    1996 – Longtime Vandalia attorney Joe Dees was the keynote speaker at the Veterans Day program held by Crawford-Hale American Legion Post 95.
    A large crowd was present as Kelly McGinnis was led into the Bond County Courthouse to face charges of murdering Greenville attorney Tom Meyer.
    Massac County defeated the Vandalia Community High School football team, 26-2, to end the Vandals’ postseason playoffs. The Vandals ended the season with a 10-1 record.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week's photo: This young girl went to school in Ramsey. She has two children, a boy and a girl, and she works at Med-Line in Vandalia.
    Do you know her? If so, call our office at 283-3374 by 5 p.m. next Monday.

  • Use nature to forecast the weather

    I can remember sitting at the supper table one evening at Grandma Spires’ house in Bingham when her older brother, Wilber Meyer, made the comment that his ducks were moving about more than usual – a sure sign of rain. And rain it did, the next day.
    A few days later, while finishing the last of my outdoor chores, I chanced to look up and the moon had a pretty large ring around it – another sign of rain. In fact, the size of the circle can tell you when the rain will arrive.

  • The Way We Were

    20 Years Ago

    1996 – The Vandalia Vandals clobbered Breese Central, 30-6, to end the football season with a perfect 9-0 mark. The Vandals were to host Piasa Southwestern in the first round of postseason playoffs.
    Josephine Burtschi, a noted Vandalia historian who established The Little Brick House, died at the age of 87.
    A white male in a Chevrolet Blazer robbed First Bank in Vandalia, getting away with an undisclosed amount.