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Local News

  • Parent Category: News

Harms Withdrawing Candidacy for State Representative

Freshman legislator withdraws from ballot, will serve out rest of term

Watseka... In the following statement released today State Representative Josh Harms (R, Watseka) intends to file paperwork this week to remove himself from the November ballot, citing a desire to return to teaching and be closer to his family.

"It has been an honor to serve in the Illinois General Assembly, but at this time it is my intention to return to the teaching for the upcoming school year, a move that will allow me to stay closer to my family.

During my short time in Springfield, I have made quite a few friends on both sides of the aisle. And while I had an abundance of frustration at the direction Illinois is headed, there were also many opportunities to affect positive change.

As a whole being a legislator was a tremendous experience, one that I appreciate greatly. However, at this time I must return to my given profession. I'll be filing paperwork later this week removing myself from consideration this fall, and plan on fulfilling my legislative obligations through the end of this term.

In addition, I have already notified those making the decision on my replacement. It is my understanding that the process has already started, and I'm confident our area will be well represented moving forward.

I'd like to again thank everyone for their faith while representing them in Springfield, and to let them know I will continue to serve them to the best of my ability until the next Representative is sworn in."

A longtime educator, Harms holds a Bachelor's degree in education from Illinois State University as well as a Master's degree from Governor's State. Harms initially won office in a four way primary to represent the newly drawn 106th District in 2012. The 106th District includes all of Iroquois and Ford Counties along with portions of Livingston, Vermilion, and Woodford Counties.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Manteno man apparent drowning victim in Iroquois River

                                       Party turns into tragedy

A 23-year-old Manteno man's body was recovered from the Iroquois River at Iroquois Sunday afternoon. The un-identified man was an apparent drowning victim. Iroquois County Coroner Bill Cheatum, who pronounced the victim dead, said an autopsy will be completed today.

Concord-Iroquois Fire Chief Dave Faupel said it appeared a Saturday night party near the Route 52 bridge at Iroquois County involved some public intoxication. Sheriff's Police are investigating.

The Concord Fire Department received the call around midnight Saturday. Emergency personnel from Beaver Township Fire at Donovan, Sheldon, Watseka and Kentland, IN were all at the scene. Firemen walked the river bank while Ashkum, Watseka and Kentland rescue boats worked the waterway from the east side of Route 52.

Faupel said a two-hour search was called off about 2:30 am. The search resumed at 6 am Sunday. Ashkum Fire, Watseka and Aroma Park rescue boats again worked the fast-flowing river.

Sonar equipment from the Department of Natural Resources located the body around 4:30 Sunday afternoon 350 feet downstream toward the west, according to Chief Faupel. The MABAS 41 Dive team from Hudson (IL) retrieved the victim's body.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

T-storms likely in Monday forecast

The NWS reports strong thunderstorms will make Monday morning a bit trying. Early morning storms could redevelop again during the late afternoon. The temp is likely to reach 88 with a heat index near 98.


There is a moderate risk for severe thunderstorms late Monday afternoon through the evening hours. The NWS says there's a potential for damaging winds, isolated tornadoes and a lower threat of large hail.


Scattered thunderstorms are expected in central-Illinois the rest of the morning. At times, heavy rainfall may redevelop. Things will quiet down before the chance of storms re-developing later in the day.


94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

No murder charge in death of homeless man’s killing

                   Murder rap dropped against reported-suspect


Kankakee Police on Friday announced a murder charge against a homeless man in the death of another homeless man had been dropped.


A 27-year-old man, considered a suspect in the beating death of 46-year-old Walter Baker, has been cleared in the investigation. Police reported erroneously that Mario Martinez-Castillo was charged in the murder. Castillo is now being held for a possible immigration violation.


Walter Baker's body was found behind a dumpster along Brookmont Boulevard. Police reported he was an apparent beating victim.


94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Lake Village, IN woman dies of accident injuries

A 51-year-old Lake Village, IN woman died Tuesday of injuries suffered in a crash with a semi in Newton County, IN. Tammy Ann Rendant paased away at Riverside Hospital, a day after he pickup truck was hit by an eastbound tractor-trailer at State Road 10 and State Road 55.

Sheriff's Police reported the accident happened just after 3:30 pm Monday. A Texas truck driver, 54-year-old Larry Jeffers, failed to stop at an eastbound intersection. The semi hit the driver's side of the Rendant pickup. Police said the pickup had the right-of-way.

The semi continued and hit another car driven by 24-year-old Telisha Howard of Lake Village. No other serious injury was reported.

State police and the Sheriff's Department are still investigating the crash.

94.1 WGFA