The Way We Were

25 Years Ago

1990 – Vandalia made 13 of 17 free throws in the fourth quarter for a 66-55 win over St. Elmo in the regional finals. It was Vandalia’s first regional victory in five years.
Randy Heckert of St. Elmo and Brian Kern of Vandalia earned all-state honorable mention status in the AP Class A All-State Poll.
Dixon Ticonderoga was in the process of closing its Vandalia warehouse, resulting in the loss of about six jobs locally.
Don Funk was promoted from director of operations to vice president of Benner-Nawman Inc.
Alan and Shannon Lurkins of Vandalia won the Conservation Family Award at the annual meeting of the Fayette County Soil and Water Conservation District.
After getting off to a 0-9 start at the beginning of the season, Vandalia found itself in the championship game of its own sectional basketball tournament after beating Lincolnwood, 74-66. Brian Kern scored points and Quinn Bowen 17 in the sectional victory. In the finals, the Vandals lost to eventual state champion Trenton Wesclin, 67-49.

30 Years Ago

1985 – Four inches of rain over the weekend caused flooding in many acres, levee leaks, the closing of Route 51 south of Vandalia and cost Conrail its line through Vandalia as riprap was washed away.
Fayette County Hospital doctors presented an emergency room proposal that called for them to provide coverage during the week and an outside group on weekends.
Vandalia High School’s varsity scholar bowl team took first in the South Central Scholastic Conference. Team members were Coreada Kelly, Michele Thomas, Angelo Ponce, Mike Wefer, Brad Reznick and Amie Leander. Leander was named first team all-tournament and won the One-on-One competition. Reznick was second team and fifth in One-on-One. The junior varsity team took second, with Kristen Riegel earning MCP honors.
Andy Craig of Ramsey was informed that he’s been approved for the State Farmer Degree by the Illinois FFA.
Two commissioners of the Vandalia Levee and Drainage District said they believe damage to levees and drainage ditches in the area was caused by water released from Lake Shelbyville. They asked the Army Corps of Engineers to help solve the problems.
Vandalia took first in small school T.E.A.M.S. competition at Kaskaskia College, and earned the right to advance to sectional play. Eight individual awards were won, two by Brad Reznick and one each by Michele Thomas, Mark Themig, Coreada Kelly, Lori Payne, Mike Wefer and Carol Seaton.

40 Years Ago

1975 –  Twelve people from Fayette County were presently employed in the Green Thumb program.
Air-conditioning units at the Crane packing plant were being put in place by helicopter.
Ed Loyd presided at a meeting of Vandalia Senior Citizens Board of Directors held in the  Fayette County Hospital conference room. Three more discount services had been arranged for senior citizens.
Martha Fulton was selected to attend Girls State, having been sponsored by Crawford-Hale Unit No. 95 American Legion Auxiliary.
Bill Culbertson was the fifth Culbertson brother to wrestle at Vandalia Community High School. This weekend, he was to have tried to be the one with the best record. Undefeated in 28 matches, he was going to state finals at Champaign and to beat his brothers’ records, he would have to finish higher than fourth.     
Kroger’s were selling 3-pound cans of Crisco at $1.89, turkeys at 50 cents a pound and round or sirloin steak at 99 cents a pound.
Max Grinnell was a new Country Companies agent.   

50 Years Ago

1965 –  Belated snow began falling Wednesday. Several inches had fallen by noon.
DAR winners at county high schools this year were Wanda Hoffman, Ramsey; Sandra Albright, Vandalia; Sandra Scheer, St. Peter; Judy Hunter, St. Elmo; and Lynda Harris, Brownstown.
Brownstown’s Dave Miller had the mumps and missed the district tournament.
Central School in Vandalia moved into the sectional finals by defeating St. Mary’s, 42-24. They were to have played Hillsboro for the title.
Billie Sitter, representing Effingham Chapter Unit 36 of the Illinois Hair Dressers Association, presented Fayette County Hospital with a hair dryer as the organization’s project for National Beauty Salon Week.
Pack 315 of Boy Scouts held the annual Blue and Gold Dinner Feb. 22 at Lincoln School cafeteria.

60 Years Ago

1955 –  Mrs. Clarence Lockart, operator of Lockart Shoe Repair Shop, had been invited to stump the TV panel of “What’s My Line.”
Vernon Berger of Denny’s Department Store received congratulations for his election to presidency of Vandalia Retail Merchants Association.
Ruth Ann Forbes and Leon Carrico Jr. were elected queen and kind of the 1955 Valentine Dance, sponsored by the Band Parents.
Baptists were to have held dedication of the new church addition on Sunday.

Two rural homes, one owned by Harold Mattes and occupied by Kick Alsbury and one on Carlyle Road occupied by Zimmermans, were damaged by fire Friday. The thermometer hovered around 0.
After four years with the U.S. Air Force, Tommy Isbell returned home from Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.
Fred Mattes, president of Fayette County Farm Bureau, was one of 15 Illinois farmers to be flown to Washington, D.C., for a three-day look-in on the nation’s capitol.
Ramsey Ben Hur Club visited Hotel Evans to hear Charles Evans and Joseph Burtschi tell how the mural on the north wall came to be painted.

70 Years Ago
1945 – The county supervisors named Ruby Southwell to succeed her husband, the late Steve Southwell, as coroner.
More than 200 young people were expected to attend the East Central District of Illinois Disciples of Christ Youth Fellowship conference to be held in the local First Christian Church in the near future.
Killed in action: Kermit Earl Teter and Cpl. L.H. Foley.
L.R. Ewbank purchased the grocery portion of the Harris Grocery and Meat Market this week. Harris planned to operate the meat market, effective March 5.
Adult classes in home economics were to have been started Feb. 26 under the homemaking department of the high school.
Three rural schools – Walnut Grove, Berry Hill and Kasch District – reported perfect attendance for January.
Vandalia won by a score of 49-16 over Mattoon this weekend.
The AAA men were ready to begin their farm-to-farm canvass for the 1945 Farm Plan Sign-Up. Four special conservation practices were listed.

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