Joan Griffis/Illinois Ancestors: Trump's grandfather made and left fortune recently "invested two years and $10 million to digitize 170 million probate documents dating from 1668 to 2005." Included in this database is information on Donald Trump's immigrant grandfather, Fred Trump, who left an estate worth $500,000 in today's dollars when he died in 1918 in Queens, New York.

Go figure: Sept. 16, 2015

A numerical look at local headlines


What Tuscola High teacher DOUG ROBINSON won in cash and prizes for about 25 minutes' work on the "Wheel of Fortune" set.

That ought to leave plenty for that dream vacation he and wife BRANDY have always wanted to take.

Meg Makes: Let the pumpkin recipes begin

September seems to flip the magic switch — you can now find pumpkin in just about everything.

I recently observed a dozen pumpkins fresh off the vine in my mom's backyard and decided that, hey, if they're in season, I'm happy to join the pumpkin-flavored bandwagon.

This Pumpkin-Yogurt Bread calls for canned pumpkin, but I substituted pumpkin butter with good results.

Goals for GOP debaters

With debate No. 2 set for 7 p.m.

Neighbors: Recognizing accomplishments throughout our communities

Urbana's finest

The Exchange Club of Urbana has recognized Urbana's Mike Cervantes as Police Officer of the Year. Cervantes is the K9 officer for the department. He is assigned to the Patrol Division and also assists on a variety of sweeps.

Top of the morning, Sept. 16, 2015

At 1 p.m. Friday, the Clinton Police Department will introduce the new face of its K9 Unit, a black labrador retriever named Charlie. Not that she needs a press conference to feel special.

"She's a celebrity around here every day and quite the diva," Chief Ben Lowers said.

On the generational front line

No matter how old we are, no matter how much we expected it, we’re never quite prepared to lose our parents.

My friends and I are at the age where it’s a common occurrence. Suddenly we’re the ones on the generational front line, without the emotional backup we’ve had since we were kids.

Sometimes you have to take a stand - even at McDonald's

Note: This column appeared in the Sept. 1 News-Gazette.

Dear McDonald’s worker,

I feel I owe you an explanation.

I could tell by the look on your face that you were a bit taken aback when I came in for my missing Filet-o-Fish the other day.

You see, your nice friends in the drive-through had given me one of my sandwiches, but not the other one.

Two from Champaign County consider run for 102nd House District

CHAMPAIGN — A U.S. Army veteran from Champaign and a Savoy Village Board member say they are investigating whether to run as Republican candidates for the Illinois House seat now held by Rep. Adam Brown, R-Champaign.

Spotlight on Service, Sept. 15, 2015

This week: Clinton Rotary

About the club

President: Greg Taylor, minister at the First Christian Church. (John Hoblit takes over in July 2016).

Origin: Founded in 1920

Meets: Noon on Tuesdays at the American Legion building in Clinton, with food prepared by Tom Redington.