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  • Parent Category: News

Will County woman killed in I-55 crash

An un-identified Plainfield woman died in a multi-vehicle crash Thursday on I-55 in L:ivingston County.  The 20-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene.  The crash happened just before 2 pm.

Livingston County Coroner Danny Watson said the victim's southbound vehicle crossed the median into the northbound lanes and hit two other vehicles, north of Pontiac. 

Illinois State Police and Pontiac Police are also involved in the investigation.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Tim Nugent Appointed Economic Alliance President/CEO

The Board of Directors of the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County announces the appointment of Tim Nugent as President/CEO. The appointment is effective immediately.

Nugent brings to the role more than 20 years of experience and a record of success in business, real estate and community development.

In 10 years as mayor of the Village of Manteno - an office Nugent currently holds and will retain in his new position with the Alliance - the northern Kankakee County municipality's population has grown more than 20% and sales tax receipts have doubled. Nugent attributes that growth to comprehensive planning and execution, targeted business incentives and a collaborative development environment, advantages he intends to foster on a wider scale in his new position.

"Kankakee County has seen $1 billion in investment in the last two years alone," noted Nugent. "Our community is well positioned for even greater growth, and it starts with that spirit of cooperation and leadership rowing in the same direction."

Prior to serving as Manteno mayor, Nugent owned and operated Manteno Lumber & True Value while leading numerous residential real estate development projects.

"Tim has the right combination of skills and the right attitude to excel in this position in this community," said Economic Alliance Board Chairman and Riverside Healthcare President/CEO Phil Kambic. "His track record really speaks for itself."

Nugent replaces Mike Van Mill, who resigned in November after having served as president/CEO since the Alliance's incorporation in 2007. Van Mill now serves as administrator for the Village of Bourbonnais.

94.1 WGFA (Info submitted)

  • Parent Category: News

Watseka Chamber award winners recognized …

Local citizens and groups were properly recognized (Wednesday) at the Watseka Area Chamber of Commerce annual awards banquet.

The Chamber and the Times-Republic share the spotlight in presenting awards.

Hayden Schaumburg and Martha Howe were named Citizen-of-the-Year and Lifetime Achievement Award winners, respectively, by the Times-Republic.

The Chamber of Commerce earlier named Helen Gerber its Staff Achievement Award winner. The City of Watseka – City Council and City Employees earned the Professional Award.

Martha Howe's leadership in directing the Watseka Food Pantry earned her the accolades. Her nomination cited her "backbone and energy that makes the Pantry a successful organization."

Howe supervises more than a dozen volunteers to make sure people in need are served. The nomination also referred to Martha's effort in helping Watseka flood victims receive extra food and cleaning supplies.

The nomination also called "Martha a true blessing to this community and the county."

Helen Gerber's pat-on-the-back from the Chamber highlighted her involvement with the Watseka Kiwanis Club, working with many of the club programs.

Gerber is also involved in children's educational programs at schools and church and the library. She told the audience, we can leave positive footprints.

Watseka Mayor Bob Harwood praised the city employees for their extra effort during the city's recent bouts with flooding. Two major floods in July and again in December had the city on its heels. But the city employees' effort to help residents and businesses get back on their feet, was most recognized.

The City employees and Council are recipients of the Professional Award.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Hayden Schaumburg inspires community, named Citizen-of-Year by Times-Republic

It was a tragic accident that would have left many people feeling down, feeling sorry for themselves. But for one Watseka teenager, a severe spinal injury suffered during a high school football game, wasn't going to put him on the shelf for very long.

Young Hayden Schaumburg used his injury to teach all of us ... how to better people. And today, Hayden is as active as ever before...walking, talking, attending school, working the farm, and still inspiring his community will his resilience.

The Times-Republic (Wednesday night) named Hayden Schaumburg its Citizen-of-the-Year. The honor came at the Watseka Area Chamber of Commerce annual awards banquet.

Martha Howe was also recognized and honored as The Times-Republic's Lifetime Achievement Award winner.

Her efforts keep the Watseka Area Food Pantry operating and serving many people in need. The nomination pointed to her backbone and energy for a program that's a huge success.

Hayden's inspiration stems from his spinal injury on the football field in October of 2014. After weeks in a Chicago-area hospital and rehab, The high schooler's determination to rebound from the accident sparked a community effort to support his comeback.

A group of people nominated Hayden for the Citizen-of-the-Year, pointing to his journey as something that's made the community better. People have joined together to fundraise and ignite his determination.

The community itself, the nomination states, has helped the town-folks learn to become better...co-workers, friends, neighbors, volunteers and citizens. Hayden's effort, the nomination points to, has inspired people of all ages.

As for the award, Hayden says "thank you to everyone who's been behind me in my journey; I love my community so much."

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Veteran Kankakee County Jailer dies

A long-time employee of the Kankakee County Sheriff's Department has died. Veteran Correctional Officer Dean Dyer passed away at his Bonfield home Tuesday. He was 50 years–old. Dyer was a 19-year-old employee of the county.

Dyer had suffered from ALS – Lou Gehrig's disease.

94.1 WGFA