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Local News

  • Parent Category: News

Milford native Gene Callahan dies

                          Served as Democratic adviser, MLB lobbyist

Milford native Eugene "Gene" Callahan died at his Springfield home Monday. He was 80 years-old.

Callahan was former chief of staff to former U.S. Senator Alan Dixon and was a political adviser to many local Democrats. He also served major league baseball as a lobbyist under MLB Commissioner Bud Selig.

Callahan was best known for his service under Dixon, but he also served on the staffs of former governors Samuel Shapiro and Otto Kerner, both locally successful Democrats. He retired as head of government relations for Major League Baseball. He was the first lobbyist for the league.

"Gene was just a wonderful man. He was very sincere and a true and blue Democrat who had the fortune to hold some very important positions," said former state Rep. Phil Novak, of Bradley. "It's very ironic that he passed away only two weeks after Alan Dixon."

The Callahan family retained strong roots in Iroquois County as hog farmers and had the distinction of serving in Democratic Party positions in a predominantly Republican county. Callahan's brother, Fran, served as the county's Democratic chairman.

Gene is the uncle of former WGFA National Farm Broadcaster Colleen Callahan.

The family plans a celebration of Callahan's life in Springfield.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Police say ground search complete; no new details released

Illinois State Police say no new details were released following a large scale ground search Sunday morning in the village of Sheridan in LaSalle County which involved at least 100 law enforcement and fire personnel.


The search was conducted as part of an ongoing investigation into the June 14 murders of two Dwight residents. 30-year-old Kelli Denker and her mother, 60-year-old Donna Denker were found shot to death in their home.


State Police spokeswoman Monique Bond reported the search lasted about five hours. The Illinois State Police, Dwight Police, Morris Police, fire departments from Mutual Aid Box Alarm System Divisions 15 and 25 and the LaSalle County Sheriff's Office all participated.

Officials searched a 26-acre site near the village of Sheridan, she said, but did not offer further comment.
Last week, Bond said the purpose of the search would be to locate evidence that may assist in the Denker homicide investigation and recent burglaries in Grundy County that occurred around the same time as the murders.


Rewards totaling $10,000 have been offered in the murder case.


Dwight Police Chief Tim Henson asked that anyone with information about the crime call the Dwight Police Department at 815-584-1975 or Grundy County CrimeStoppers at 815-942-9667. Callers may remain anonymous.


94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Senator Jason Barickman’s Mobile Office Visits Local Communities

Staff from Senator Barickman's office will be holding mobile office hours Tuesday in several communities. This is an opportunity to speak with staff members regarding any questions or concerns with state government.

WHEN & WHERE: Tuesday, August 5th, 2014
Colfax 9:00am - 10:00am at Colfax Library
Gibson City 11:00am - 12:00pm at Moyer Library
Paxton 1:30pm - 2:30pm at Paxton Library
Cissna Park 3:00pm - 4:00pm at Creekside Community Center

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Update: Momence accident kills 1, injuries 2

A 33-year-old woman was killed Sunday near Momence in a motorcycle accident on Illinois Route 114. Two others were injured.


Gloria York of Momence was pronounced dead. Kankakee County Coroner Bob Gessner said she was a passenger on the back of a motorcycle. Gessner said a preliminary report show the motorcycle she was on got entangled with another cycle as the rider tried to pass it on Route 114.


York was not wearing a helmet, Gessner said. An autopsy is scheduled for today.


The two others that were hospitalized are in critical condition.


94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Momence woman killed in weekend accident

Illinois State Police investigated a bicycle accident Sunday that left a Momence woman dead. Details are not yet available. The accident happened on Illinois Route 114, east of Momence.

The woman killed was reported to be a passenger on one of two bicycles riding together. The bikes may have bumped each other while passing another vehicle. The victim was pronounced dead at the scene.

94.1 WGFA