Top of the morning, Dec. 23, 2013


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Something to get you going today, courtesy executive editor Jim Rossow:

Memory Lane

On Mondays, we'll make use of our extensive photo archives both in this space and on our News-Gazette Facebook page (where we'd love for you to weigh in).

Today: Marilyn Monroe made headlines — literally — when she arrived on Ozark Airlines at the University of Illinois Airport on Aug. 7, 1955. The movie star's destination: Bement to judge a beard contest as part of the village's centennial celebration. "Blonde Bombshell Bursts Over Bement" blared the headline in The News-Gazette.

Check out the photo here

More on B&W photos ...

Last week, The News-Gazette's Facebook page helped reunite families that hadn't touched base in more than 35 years.

After we posted a 1978 picture of train engines stuck in a snow drift along what was then the Missouri-Pacific Railroad northeast of Penfield (check it out here), Jared Stanfield wrote that he, too, was stranded that day on an engine between Sidney and Urbana and that "a farmer named ray hudson rescued us with a tractor."

Well, guess who saw that post? Ray Hudson's son, Cecil, who responded: "Funny thing when I saw the picture that was the first thing I thought of but I never got any names of the guys he rescued till now."

Cecil Hudson, now 59 and farming in southeast Urbana, said his late father — Ray died in 1980 — used the family's John Deere tractor to rescue Stanfield and his crew, letting the railroad workers stay the night at their house. "Dad said they were really happy to see him when he pulled up," Cecil said.