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WSMI News

Cedarhurst in Godfrey Among Assisted Living Facilities Seeking Valentine's

You can add a Valentine to your list this week. Cedarhurst in Godfrey is among assisted living facilities asking for the public to send Valentine’s cards. Breanna WYman at Cedarhurst tells the Telegraph  many seniors have lost their loved ones and sometimes Valentine's Day can be a very difficult time for them," she said. "We want to show them that they have a community of people who love them." Cedarhurst of Godfrey is asking people to send its residents some love this year via a card with a special message for them. 

"You can participate, and maybe you have children or grandchildren who would participate," Wyman said. 

Mail cards to: Cedarhurst of Godfrey, c/o Breanna Wyman, 1000 Airport Road, Godfrey, 62035. 

Wyman asked that cards be sent by Wednesday, Feb. 8 (but probably anytime before Valentine's Day would be appreciated). 


Theatre Auditions Tonight in Greenville

Anyone in the Greenville area with a love of acting and community theatre is invited to audition for the Factory Theatre’s spring production of James and the Giant Peach. Auditions will be held from 5-7 pm on Monday, February 6, at GU’s Factory Theatre/Kelsey Building (401 E. Harris Ave, Greenville, IL). Auditions are open to community members in Greenville and the surrounding area and Greenville  University students. Must be 16 or older. Community members must provide their own transportation to the theatre. 

Audition Components: 

- The song of the auditionee’s choice must be no longer than 3 minutes. The song should  showcase the singer’s voice and style. 

- 1-minute monologue 

- Cold reading—various parts from the show 

- Simple dance combination that will be taught at the rehearsal 

Production: James and the Giant Peach 

Based on Roald Dahl’s book of the same name, James and the Giant Peach is a whimsical, magical, and slightly offbeat account of a journey made by one boy and his seven insect friends. What do they want  (?): acceptance and a second chance at life. Where will they find it (?): New York City. What is their mode  of transportation (?): A giant, London-grown peach. 

Performances will take place on April 21, 22, and 23, and on April 28, 29, and 30. 

Visit www.stageagent.com/shows for more information about the plot and characters of James and the Giant Peach. 

Anyone interested in auditioning can fill out an online audition form and sign up for an appointment or  email factorytheatre@greenville.edu. Walk-ins are welcome. 


Hillsboro Area Health Foundation Valentine Fundraiser Returns to Event Center

If you plan on taking part In the Hillsboro Area Health Foundation’s annual Valentine Gala, it’s no longer an event made for sweatpants and binge watching Netflix. After two years of Covid converting the 24-year-old event into a drive through fundraiser, the gala makes its return to  The Event Center of Montgomery County February 11th. This year's in-person event will help raise funds essential to funding community health initiatives and programs, including education scholarships for much-needed positions at Hillsboro Area Hospital, such as RNs, CNAs, lab techs, dietary, x-ray techs and more. The Gala planning committee is still seeking sponsors and donors who would like to contribute items or baskets for the event's auctions and drawings. Tickets to the event are also available and are $75 per person for dinner, dessert, drinks and dancing. The theme for the 2023 Gala is 'Fire & Ice.' Contact Event Director Claire Eskew at (217) 898-5961 to sign up as a waiter, purchase tickets, volunteer, donate or secure a sponsorship. Or mail donations to Hillsboro Area Health Foundation, 1200 E Tremont St, Hillsboro, IL 62049. 


Breaking. Incident at Graham Correctional Center Sends Multiple People to the Hospital

Update: AFSCME 31 spokesman Anders Lindall reports 18 Graham Correctional Center employees are being treated for exposure to a foreign agent, they believe all of them are in stable condition. They're awaiting confirmation on the identity of the foreign agent in question.

Hillsboro Area Hospital has provided care to patients that have been transported from Graham Correctional Center. Hillsboro Area Hospital received 8 patients. All patients are currently in stable condition and will continue to be monitored as needed. The initial 911 page was sent out around 2:38 PM, and this is an ongoing situation. Hillsboro Area Hospital implemented our mass influx plan. All transported individuals were provided immediate care including decontamination. The Hillsboro Hospital Administrative Team would like to thank our team members, Local EMS, Law Enforcement Officers, and County EMA for quick assistance.

 

An incident this (Wednesday) afternoon at Graham Correctional Center that appears has sent multiple people to HSHS St. Francis and Hillsboro Hospitals. The Illinois Department of Corrections is only saying "The matter is being investigated. There is no further information at this point.".      Police were asked to bring considerable Narcan to the scene for an apparent overdose or exposure with fentanyl scenario.  There's no word on the condition of inamtes or guards or a number impacted at this point.  Hillsboro Area Hospital told the public that they are dealing with a high call volume and have asked for patience.    


Crimestoppers and Montgomery County Sheriff's Office Seeking Off Road Vehicle Thieves

The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office is seeking information in reference to a commercial burglary that occurred in Walshville Township.  Sometime during the late night hours of Sunday and  the early morning hours of Monday  two unknown persons forced entry to a shed located at Miller Brother’s Fertilizer on Niemanville Tr. in Walsvhille Township.   A green colored, 2012 Honda 4x4 ATV and a green colored, 2013 John Deere 4x4 Gator were taken during the burglary.  The suspect vehicle has been described as a light colored, single cab pick-up truck, with a silver colored tool box in the bed.  Surveillance camera pictures of the suspects are attached. 
If you have information regarding this crime or can identify the suspects please contact the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office at (217)532-9511 or you can contact Crime Stoppers at 1(800)-352-0136.  Tips can also be reported to Crime Stoppers through the Crime Stoppers app.  Just download the Crime Stoppers app, P3 Tips, and submit a tip via the app.  Information can be reported anonymously. 

 

 

 


Greenville based Attorney Tom DeVore is no stranger to taking Governor J.B. Pritzker to court.  It was a regular occurence during the CoVid period and now DeVour is preparing to do the same when it comes to the Assault Weapons Ban that was signed into law this week.  DeVore plans to sue Pritzker and the Illinois General Assembly, saying the ban on sale of a number of firearms and new magazine capacity limits aren't in line with the Constitution.  If you're interested in being a plaintiff, the sign up deadline has been moved up to Friday at noon.  Here's where to find out more.  

https://devorelawoffices.com/?fbclid=IwAR25J9hMP4KxPO1-_9brKhB46kQ-A2ttInDwAGSXiXqp44VI1aJ6o4RqmeM


Montgomery County States Attorney Won't Enforce Assault Weapons Ban

The newly signed assault weapons ban has dominated conversation online or at the local cafe. A big development as Montgomery County States Attorney Andrew Affrunti announced he won’t enforce the law, calling it a violation of the Second Amendment.  Affrunti cited recent case law, noting the  comes less than a year after the U.S. Supreme Court decided New York State Pistol and Rifle Association v. Buren, and then subsequently entered orders vacating the decisions of California and Maryland Courts that had approved magazine capacity limits and “assault weapon” bans. In last night’s press release Affrunti said....  

"As the Montgomery County State’s Attorney, I swore an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States. In accordance with my Oath and belief that this law violates the 2nd Ammendment of the United State’s Constitution, I will be exercising my prosecutorial discretion to not file charges against those in violation of this law." 

Prior to the Governor Pritzker signing the legislation, this week the Montgomery County Board voiced its unanimous opposition to the legislation.


Hillsboro Area Hospital Hosting Strengthening Families Program Kickoff

Let’s face it, it’s not easy for families to adjust to the times.  You can’t lean back on the teachings of your parents to help you navigate what Tik Tok Challenges are dangerous etc.   Tonight (January 11) Hillsboro Area Hospital is hosting the launch event for its’ free Strengthening families program. Maria Clark says the program plugs into mental health boosting efforts already underway in Hillsboro Schools.This event is purely informational. Attending the Launch Event does not require you to participate in the program. This event will help you learn about the Strengthening Families Program, which is designed to help build child and parent relationships. The program is completely free to participate in. Additional information about the Launch Event and program in the Cloud Room can be found at: http://www.hillsboroareahospital.org/strengtheningfamilies 


Hillsboro Set for New Town Hall Meeting on Tourism

Social media conversation is all well and good, internet polling has its place, but when you really want to find out what’s going on, that’s when it’s time for old school face to face conversation. That’s the approach for Hillsboro economic development director Sarah McConnell in a bid to boost Hillsboro as a tourism destination. Hillsboro area business owners, organizations and the community for a second town hall meeting next week. The event Friday, January 13th at the Abbey on Broad will kick off at 5:30. The guest speaker will be Journal News publisher Mike Plunkett. A question and answer session will be featured. Light refreshments will be offered. You can share your questions in advance with McConnell’s office at 217-663-7490 or economicdevelopment@hillsboroillinois.net


Montgomery County EMA and Communities Prepare Shelter Scenarios for Cold Blast

— Montgomery County communities, along with County Emergency 

Management Agency are taking steps to prepare for the next round of winter weather taing place on Thursday and Friday of this week. The following communities are prepared to offer Warming Shelters  if needed: 

Hillsboro, Moose Club and Lions Club are on stand-by if needed. The centers will not open unless needed for large amounts of people. Contact 217-532-6129 

?Raymond/Harvel, Raymond Firehouse if needed. Contact Montgomery County non-emergency at 217-532-9564 

Nokomis City Hall, contact 217-563-2141 

Coffeen Firehouse, contact 217-534-2410 after 6:00 Thursday evening 

 Witt City Hall, contact Montgomery County non-emergency at 217-532-9564 

 Litchfield, The Community Center is a warming center if needed, contact Montgomery County non-emergency at 217-532-9564 

Taylor Springs, the Community Building is operating as a shelter.

Please follow the Montgomery County Emergency management Facebook page for any additions or changes. 


Foul Play Not a Factor in Death of Hillsboro Man Found in Creek

There are more details on last week’s death of the man found in the creek by the Hillsboro Lion’s Club and Hillsboro High School. The forensic autopsy of 33-year-old Joshua Ernst of Hillsboro, was completed at Memorial Medical center by a board approved forensic pathologist the coroner’s office contracts. The findings of the autopsy are consistent with the multiple hours of video surveillance that were obtained and viewed by investigators. Currently there is no criminal element of this tragic incident, Ernst is seen alone entering the creek multiple times on video. Toxicology is pending before a final conclusion is met. The investigation is ongoing by the Hillsboro Police Department and the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office. 


Longtime Hillsboro Area Hospital CEO Retiring

The new year will bring the end of an era, a changing of the guard at Hillsboro Area Hospital.  CEO Rex Brown has announced his retirement effective New Years Eve.  In a statement, Brown said the decision comes with mixed emotions. Brown said in a statement he and his family have come to love this area and who can question that after a 29 year run in the CEO post starting in 1993.  Hillsboro Area Hospital Board Chairman Earl Flack credits Brown with being a boost to Hillsboro since coming to town, saying . “We have all benefited from his track record of strategic thinking, leadership and focus on execution. He will be deeply missed, and we are so grateful for the significant contributions he has made.”  


Metro East State Rep Encourages Constituents Suggest Legislation

State Rep. Katie Stuart, D-Edwardsville, is inviting community members to reach out with ideas for legislation that they’d like to see introduced in the upcoming 103rd General Assembly.

“Here in Illinois, we mean it when we say our government is the people’s government,” Stuart said. “Participation by members of the community in devising new and improved public policy is invaluable and it also helps me to ensure that I am addressing the concerns of the people who elected me.”

The current 102nd General Assembly began in 2021 and will soon conclude. The 103rd General Assembly is slated to begin January 11, 2023, Inauguration Day.

Everyone is encouraged to submit ideas, no matter how simple or unpolished. Experience with the legislative process is not necessary.

“No idea is too small, too specific, or too broad,” Stuart said. “Ensuring that everyone has a voice in government is among my most important duties as an elected official. Providing a forum for ideas that’s accessible to anyone is an important part of that. I’m excited to see what my constituents come up with.”

Ideas should be submitted to Stuart’s constituent service office at 618-365-6650 or repkatiestuart@gmail.com.


Nokomis Police Seeking Pana Man

The Nokomis Police Department is asking for our citizens help in locating Dakoda Cantrell, 26 years old of Pana. Cantrell has active arrests warrants from Christian County, for Methamphetamine Delivery/Possession and IL DOC Parole warrants. Cantrell was seen by NPD officers in town yesterday. If anyone has any information on his whereabouts you can contact us at 217-563-2141 or call 911.


Victory Lane Ups Matching Donation to Litchfield Food Pantry

Victory Lane Ford has put the pedal to the metal in the fight against hunger. They are going that extra mile this holiday season to help HSHS St Francis Foundation collect donations for the St Clare Center Food Pantry. The local Blue Oval dealership will match up to $7,500 in donations through December 31st for the pantry Victory Lane Ford owner Gene Hebenstreit upped the ante in the fight against hunger, pushing the challenge grant donation from the annual figure of $5,000 to $7,500 . Hebenstreit said it is more important now than ever during these challenging economic times to make sure the pantry has enough food to meet their needs for the upcoming holiday season and winter months. To participate in this challenge grant, there are a number of ways you can donate: 

  • Visit Victory Lane Ford. 

  • Mail your donation to HSHS St. Francis Foundation, P.O. Box 1215, Litchfield, IL 62056, and mark “Victory Lane Challenge” in the memo. 

  • Donate online at stfrancis-litchfield.org/giving, select “Donate Now” and choose the designation St. Clare Center Food Pantry. 

  • Call 217-324-8200 to discuss how you can give.  

The St. Clare Center Food Pantry is located at 603 N. Madison Street in Litchfield and is a ministry of HSHS St. Francis Hospital. The pantry serves residents of Montgomery and Macoupin counties. For further information about the pantry, call 217-324-2800. 

 


Update:  The Montgomery County Sheriff's Office reports a suspect is in custody in connection with the following school threat incident yesterday at Lincolnwood High School. 

Yesterday, Lincolnwood Sr High Campus in Raymond was closed unti roughly two hours after the usual close of classes with no one allowed on to the campus after a note indicating a threat was found in the school, something seen recently in North Mac, Pana and Taylorville schools.  There are no indications a culprit has been found of that the threat is credible.  The investigation continues. The Montgomery County Sheriff's Office reports Deputies, Officers from local jurisdictions and State Police are on the scene.  There are no injuries and no known immediate threat.  School officials will be in contact with parents in regards to a location for reuification.


Sometimes a quarter is more powerful than a mere 25 cents. Last night’s Montgomery County Board reorganizational meeting offered some sports like drama... call it a matter of overtime, extra innings, sudden death.  The effort to elect the county board chairman was deadlocked at 7 all in the first gathering of the smaller version of the Montgomery County Board.  The man who entered the night as Chairman, Evan Young, and Board member Doug Donadlson, both of District 3, both received seven votes. That forced a flip of the coin to determine the winner.   Because he had more votes on Election Day, Young got to call heads or tails, Sheriff Rick Robbins handled the coin toss duties and the coin landed in favor of Donaldson.  Young was chosen as Vice Chairman in a close 8-6 vote.  


Litchfield Names New Interim Fire Chief

The Litchfield City Council has opted to choose a new Interim Chief for the fire department after the recent departure of Joe Hollomy.  Firefighter/paramedic Adam Pennock was promoted to the post and says he is hoping to keep the job on a permanent basis.  Pennock started off with the Raymond Harvel Fire Department and developed an interest in firefighting during his days at Lincolnwood High School. 


Update: The suspect was pronounced dead at HSHS St. Francis Hospital. An autopsy is set for today (Saturday).

 

Thanksgiving Peace was broken for police who responded to reports of a man with a gun in Litchfield on Thanksgiving morning.  Litchfield Police fielded reports of a man with a gun.  State Police, Litchfield Police and the Illinois State Police responded to the call just after 10 a.m.   The man was spotted in the parking lot of the local branch of Taylorville Community Credit Union on Union/Route 16.  The subject displayed a firearm and two Litchfield police officers, a Montgomery County Sheriff’s deputy, and an ISP trooper discharged their firearms. The suspect was struck and disarmed, and then transported to the hospital. No officers were struck or injured during the incident.
In accordance with the Police and Community Relations Improvement Act (50 ILCS 727) and the Illinois State Police Law (20 ILCS 2605), Special Agents of the Illinois State Police Division of Internal Investigation are investigating these events.
This investigation is open and ongoing. Upon completion of the investigation, all evidence and facts will be submitted for review to the Montgomery County State’s Attorney's Office. To fulfill our commitment to integrity and transparency, additional information, including the video, will be made public, when possible, with the advice and concurrence of the State’s Attorney.  No additional information is available at this time.  All subjects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.


Hillsboro Police Attempt to I.D. Person of Interest in Felony Theft 

Hillsboro Police Attempt to I.D. Person of Interest in Felony Theft 

The Hillsboro Police Department is asking for the community’s help in identifying the individual in the attached photos. The individual is a person of interest in a theft that occured in Hillsboro during the evening hours of November 7th, 2022.  

If you have any information on the identity of the person in the photos please contact the Hillsboro Police Department at (217)532-6120.  

Anonymous tips can be provided to Crime Stoppers by calling 1(800)352-0136. You can also submit an anonymous tip to Crime stoppers at www.macmontcrimestoppers.com.  

Remember Crime Stoppers only wants your information, not your name. If your tip results in an arrest you could be eligible for a cash rewar

 


RFD