Area woman casts wide net to follow her dreams

MAHOMET – The most valuable lesson Catrina Marsh has learned in her 2 1/2 years working in Hollywood: You have to take risks to make your dreams come true.

Marsh, who visited the Mahomet home of her dad, Brooks Marsh, this week, has done casting for extras for various TV shows, including "Heroes," "The Suite Life of Zack and Cody," "The OC" and "Malcolm in the Middle." She moved to Los Angeles after graduating from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale in 2005. She grew up in Champaign and graduated from Centennial High School in 2001.

Villa Grove police have new home at the holidays

VILLA GROVE – After nine months of planning and renovations, the Villa Grove police department has officially set up operations in its new offices in the Villa Grove City Building.

Police Chief Dennis Gire said that the majority of the move was completed in a single day on Dec. 20 without interruption to services.

$1 million bond set for Monticello road accident suspect

URBANA – A man involved in a crash that killed an Ivesdale woman Thursday has a history of substance abuse and criminal convictions stemming from that behavior.

Travis Day, 41, was arraigned Friday on two counts of felony driving under the influence. One alleged that he caused the death of Mauna Adams, 58, by hitting her car in the rear end with a pickup truck about 12:40 p.m. Thursday on the Monticello Road overpass over Interstate 57. The other count alleged he was driving under the influence of alcohol at a time when he had prior convictions for the same offense in 1986 in Indiana, 1987 in Douglas County, and 1997 in Champaign County.

Tanker driver's life remains in danger

URBANA – A Decatur truck driver remained in grave condition at an Urbana hospital Friday evening following a crash between his gasoline tanker truck and a minivan in west Champaign on Wednesday night.

Terry Hudson of Decatur said her husband, David Hudson, 47, has been in a drug-induced coma at Carle Foundation Hospital since shortly after being taken to the hospital after the 9:12 p.m. accident at the intersection of Church Street and Country Fair Drive.

Bus driver credits military training for heroic rescue

CHAMPAIGN – George McCoppin said training he received in the military more than 30 years ago came back to him in a flash Wednesday night when he saw a gasoline tanker truck go over on its side.

The 56-year-old Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District bus driver witnessed the crash between the truck driven by David Hudson of Decatur and a van driven by Erin Ruprecht of Mahomet.

A cheap trip? No. Worth it? Definitely

CHAMPAIGN – Ticket to the game: $135. Tour package: $2,200.

A chance to see the Tournament of Roses parade in person after watching it on TV all her life: Well, let's just say it's worth an awful lot to Betty Sappenfield.

Judge orders Clark to prison

URBANA – A Champaign County judge on Friday ordered that Keon Clark be transferred to a state prison immediately to begin serving a sentence he received in Champaign County in September.

The 32-year-old former National Basketball Association player from Danville appeared in arraignment court in Urbana on Friday on three Champaign County cases. He had been transferred from Vermilion County where a judge last week set a March trial date on a number of felony cases there.

Man gets 24-year sentence for whipping boy

URBANA – A Champaign man convicted of whipping a young boy was sentenced Friday to 24 years in prison.

A jury convicted Bobby Tatum, 28, whose last known address was in the 500 block of East Beardsley Avenue, Champaign, in August of aggravated battery to the 7-year-old son of his girlfriend, with whom he was living when the child was injured in April 2007.

Champaign man's store specializes in hard-to-find foods

CHAMPAIGN – When Rafet Yaman came to the United States 10 years ago, he was discouraged by his job prospects.

Yaman, who was 25 at the time, had been working for the stock market in Istanbul, Turkey. But when he came to America, "I had no job; I had no cars; I didn't know anybody."

MTD seeking proposals on hourly car rental program

URBANA – Life without a car means no gasoline bills, parking fees, insurance – and no convenience.

Life with someone else's car – in this case, a joint program of the Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District, the two cities and the University of Illinois – means convenience without the headaches.