The Way We Were

20 Years Ago

1995 –  The cost of extending sewer lines to Vandalia’s western Interstate 70 interchange was less than expected. Thus, Mayor Rich Walker was proposing additional infrastructure improvements, including new sewer lines and manholes along the river bottoms in the city.
Judge Dennis Middendorff ruled that Stuart Heaton, a Bluff City man convicted of murder in 1992, could continue to use a Chicago law firm. Jenner & Block took on Heaton’s case on a pro bono (free) basis.
Two 19-year-olds, Kelly Horton and Leigh-Ann Metzger, were killed in an auto accident just east of Vandalia. A Shobonier man, Rocky Bennyhoff, was charged with reckless homicide because he allegedly caused the accident due to being intoxicated.
Fayette County residents voted 2,092-1,551 to reject a $2.55 monthly phone surcharge for Enhanced 911 emergency service.
The Fayette County, Health Department received a $1,800 grant to help fund a genetics counseling clinic.
25 Years Ago

1990 –   Brian Kern and Matt Baker shared the Hayner Award, the highest honor for VCHS football players. The awards were made during the fall sports banquet.
Brownstown Sports Boosters helped purchase new uniforms for the boys’ and girls’ basketball teams and the girls’ volleyball team.
The Fayette County Board voted to switch from paper to punch card ballots. The November general election was the last time paper ballots were to be used. Fayette and Hamilton counties were the only counties still using paper ballots.

30 Years Ago

1985 – Kenneth Farber agreed to serve as Ramsey’s mayor, filling the vacancy created when Raymond Wemple died in September.
Winners of the Illinois Key Awards at the Fayette County 4-H Achievement Night were Jodi Austin, Brad Black, Tammy Daniels, Deanna Godbersen and Shannon Smithson.
Bob Dugan was elected president of the Vandalia Board of Education for the fifth straight year.
Dr. Hans Rollinger became the first doctor to serve on the Fayette County Hospital Board of Directors.

40 Years Ago

1975 – Pamela Edwards was hired as attendance officer for Bond-Fayette Educational Service Region.
Farmers had finished a super harvest in this area and were now preparing fields for winter.
Fayette County Hospital was one of several facilities in an 18-county area to be serviced by a $40,000 van. The Overland Critical Care Van was based at St. John’s Hospital in Springfield, and could be used to transport patients.
Dr. D.H. Rames was named a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians.
Richard M. Lowe of St. Elmo was named to receive the FFA’s Honorary American Farmer’s degree.
Vandalia Woman’s Club sponsored its second Holiday House Walk Thursday.

50 Years Ago

1965 – Fire destroyed the home of Grant Walker, Route 51 South.
Nearly 2,000 Baptists arrived in Vandalia to attend the State Association Convention.
Fayette County Board of Review upped valuations more than $3 million.
Gene Boley was re-elected head of the Fayette County Fair Board.
Thieves cracked the safe at Burtschi Motors and took off with $236.

60 Years Ago

1955 – John McLuckie, after 20 years with the company, was promoted to a position with Coca-Cola. Donald Funk succeeded him as plant manager at Vandalia.
Because of injuries, coach Don Schnake was to have had to call on sophomores for the Friday night game. Injured linemen were Lowell Donnelley, Gary Plum, Mike Doran and Charley Williams.
Cynthia Bechtel and Jane Landes were capped at St. Luke’s School of Nursing, St. Louis.
Men of Vandalia Welcome Wagon Newcomers Club cooked a spaghetti supper for their wives on the evening of Nov. 6 in the Friendship Room, First National Bank, Vandalia. Doing the cooking were Maurice Beckman, Doug Kirkpatrick, Al Bolin, Dr. W.F. Cyrus and Dr. Elmer Kuehn.
Maxine Dothager was leader of the Pittsburg Princess 4-H Club. Club members were Melissa Bone, Janet Summers, Cindy Willeford, Ember Eakin, Annalea Eakin, Rhonda Provines, Connie Heather, Joyce Eyman, Carol Eyman, Cathy Johnson, Marsha Bushartt, Julie Nesbit, Sharon Eakin and Maxine Summers.

70 Years Ago

1945- A pole thrown by the lower fan of a grain separator fatally injured Thomas Kirkman, a Kaskaskia farmer.
Morris Beabout purchased the marketing equipment of the Phillips Petroleum Co. in the Vandalia area.
The Vandalia Youth Band presented its first fall concert Friday evening in the high school gymnasium.
The Mount Carmel Church, west of Ramsey, was destroyed by fire Nov. 4.
Mrs. Clay Rigdon, president of Washington School PTA, announced $394 had been netted from the 75 gallons of chili and 125 pies served to 600 people Thursday night at the organization’s benefit project-Illinois Bell Telephone advertised $3 million in jobs waiting the return of men in service.

80 Years Ago

1935 – The Moose Lodge dedicated the new clubrooms and initiated 58 candidates.
J.B. Turner used one week of his vacation to attend a coordination school of instruction held at the University of Illinois.
Vandalia senior class presented a class play, “Digging Up The Dirt,” Nov. 14 in the school gymnasium. The cast included Billy Humphrey Richard Whitlock, Warren Terry, Arthur Cocagne, Russell Carter, Mary Anna McKnight, Verna Glider, Opal Harris, Dorothy Ireland and Marilyn Welker.
Approximately 300 entries competed for prizes in the mammoth Halloween parade on Thursday night.
Brownstown employees of the Pipeline Co. and their families gave a surprise farewell party for Mr. and Mrs. J.P. Bartlett.

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