People

Retired Urbana choral teacher to direct Gibson City show

GIBSON CITY – Music educator and director Willie T. Summerville of Urbana tried to urge a more dramatic sound from his group of singers Sunday.

"You're telling a story and you've got to keep the people interested," Summerville told them. "Give me that trillion-dollar sound again."


East Urbana resident strives to revitalize his neighborhood

Tyler Fitch said he and his wife, Marianne Downey, knew they had found the house they wanted the moment they first walked in.

Newlyweds at the time, the couple were on their way to look at another house three years ago when they saw a "For sale by owner" sign in the yard of a smaller, wood-frame house at 503 E. California Ave. in east Urbana.


Urbana man drowns in rescue try

MIRAMAR BEACH, Fla. – Scott Johnson and Mike Murphy were vacationing with their families on a Florida beach when they heard the calls for help.

The two Urbana men and their wives and children were on a beach on the Gulf coast along the Florida Panhandle, late on Thursday afternoon, when a woman and a girl began screaming for help from the water, said Scott McCartney of Urbana, the brother-in-law of both men.


Champaign veteran fighting disability battle with VA

CHAMPAIGN – According to Army doctors, Garrett Anderson has "shrapnel wounds, all over body."

But the Champaign man found out last week from the Department of Veterans Affairs that the wounds "aren't related to your military service."


Dental assess program founder leaves for job in Wisconsin

URBANA – Lisa Bell, an Urbana dental hygienist who founded a groundbreaking dental access program for needy children, has accepted a state job in Madison, Wis.

Her program, Central Illinois Dental Education and Services, will continue under new leadership, according to Claudia Lennhoff, a board member with the organization.


Charity track meet to honor toddler

DANVILLE – When Steve Luke heard that 2 1/2-year-old Reagan Williams was shaken to death last July, he wanted to do something to help.

After all, he knew the toddler's grandfather, Greg Williams, from when they were kids and from working together at Danville High School, where Williams taught English.


Trip to Taiwan shows culture full of kindness

Kaohsiung, TAIWAN – In Kaohsiung, the second-largest city on the island nation of Taiwan, the people seem to be as warm as the weather.

For five East Central Illinois locals spending March in southern Taiwan on a trip sponsored by the Rotary Foundation, depending on – and receiving – the kindness of people in the Kaohsiung area has become a way of life.


Volunteer steps down from screening job after 25 years

URBANA – Having administered lie-detector tests for 40 years, Clarence Romig is a fairly good judge of character.

That's part of what made the Urbana man so good at the volunteer activity that he's been forced to give up due to deteriorating eyesight.


Athletes help children become stars in school

CHAMPAIGN – Six-year-old Kaylee Bowers was wearing her Warren Carter basket-ball jersey earlier this week, as she does nearly every Tuesday, when Carter visits her school.

The first-grader and the basketball player sat side by side on the floor in a hallway at Garden Hills Elementary School, Carter listening while Kaylee read books to him.


Tom Hayden scheduled to speak at conference

URBANA – Veteran anti-war activist Tom Hayden is headlining a conference of peace organizations this month.

The Illinois Coalition for Peace and Justice's second annual conference will be March 30 and 31 at the Holiday Inn in Urbana. Hayden speaks at 7 p.m. March 30. Conference information is at the conference Web site at http://www.ilcpj.org/conference07/.


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