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Back in the Day – 4-21-21

Ten years ago
April 27, 2011
New school board members were inducted at the April 25 meeting. Tuscola resident Elizabeth Torbit was hired as North Ward Elementary School’s new principal, effective August 1, 2011. 

Jacki Walsh was in the process of opening Wee Warriors Christian Academy in Tuscola, a Christian-based preschool for 3, 4, and 5-year-olds. 

Tuscola Rotarian Rick Davidson was presented with the Rotary International Service Above Self Award by district governor Ray Ropp. 

2011 junior prom attendants included Kylie Amick, Jacob Barr, Chance Little, and Kelsey Cleland. 

Jerry Jones established his HVAC buisness, Jerry’s Heating & Air Conditioning, which operated out of his home on Sale Street in Tuscola. 

The Warriors track and field team dominated at this year’s Tuscola Open. Top contenders on the boys side included Broc Smith, Alex Kemp, and Jack Leonard. Lisa Ponder and Lindsay Troike led the girls team. 

Tuscola Rotary Club formally welcomed four new members, Mike Step, Lorna Geiler, Karyn Applegate, and Kip Mecum, at an induction ceremony on April 20. 

Twenty years ago
April 24, 2001
A sold-out crowd at the Community Building watched as Lyndsey Greger was crowned Miss Tuscola 2001 and was named Miss Congeniality. First runner-up was Jessica Pohlig, and second runner-up was Ashley Hall.

The number of RV owners camped out on chairs at the April 23 city council meeting proved an accurate indication that changes to the city’s parking ordinance would not be enacted without a lively discussion.

Former TCHS and U of I standout Fred Wakefield signed as a free agent with the Arizona Cardinals of the National Football League.

Freshman Craig Knight, junior Tommy Pierce, senior Kenny Hogue, and sophomore Ryan Bonner joined forces to break meet and school records in the 400- and 800-meter relays during the Tuscola Open. Both the boys and girls came out on top in the 15-team invitational.

Tuscola baseball bats were sounding off as the Warriors posted a 5-1 week, wins over Niantic, Arthur-Lovington, Heritage (2), and Monticello.

Thirty years ago
April 23, 1991
City council voted to secure an option on 236 acres of farmland on the north edge of Ervin Park as the site for a proposed public golf course. The city paid $500 for the option on farmland property owned by Mable Bass.

The last remaining railroad building owned by Illinois Central–the TY switching tower in Tuscola–was scheduled to be razed in the near future if ongoing efforts failed to save the building for its historical value. 

The Tuscola United Methodist Church was the setting for the Feb. 16, 1991 wedding of Toni Lianne Travis and Johnathan Andrew Little. A buffet dinner-dance reception was held afterwards. 

Congratulations were in order for Jeff Cleland of Tuscola, who recently joined other golfers in the area as a member of the exclusive Hole-In-One Club after acing the 110-yard sixth hole in the Kaskaskia Country Club.

Forty years ago
April 28, 1981
The retiring Miss Tuscola, Linda Bartley, crowned successor Theresa Mattix at the 1981 pageant. First runner-up was Jana Carie, second runner-up was Connie Young, and Tina Cleland was named Miss Congeniality. 

April 30 would mark the opening of The Distillery, under the direction and ownership of Mr. and Mrs. Kenny Snyder, located in the former Elks Lodge building on Route 36 east. 

Litigation pitting Philip and Dorothy Dethloff against the Ziegler Coal Company–first filed in 1970 and charging the coal company of continuing to mine coal from the Dethloff’s property well after the lease had expired–was finalized recently in the form of a $4.6 million judgement in favor of the Dethloffs.

The Tuscola School District was planning fund reductions in response to likely cuts in state aid, particularly in the area of school hot lunches. One suggested means of offsetting the difference was raising the price of a hot lunch to $1. 

A seventh-inning rally rewarded the performance of Duff Hoel with a win as Tuscola Warriors notched their first baseball victory of the season. Tuscola boosted its season record to 1-7 with the 3-2 victory over the visiting Unity Rockets. 

Fifty years ago
April 22, 1971
A wildlife project was initiated this week as 22 landowners in Douglas County entered into a pilot project that included planting red and white pine, bush honeysuckle and autumn olive along Scattering Fork and around borrow pits created by the construction of I-57.

Bill Boxy from television’s “The Courtship of Eddie’s Father” was starring in “The Paisley Convertible” at Little Theater on the Square in Sullivan.

A first-time effort as songwriting paid off rather well for Jack Stickel. He was $250 richer after penning the winning song lyrics in a contest about the Wabash Cannonball train. 

Less than one-third of Tuscola’s legal voters went to the polls recently to elect five aldermen. There were a total of 563 votes cast, with winners including Dr. Robert E. Burns in Ward 1, Ray Carlson in Ward 2, Jane Lovekamp in Ward 3, and Kelly Williams in Ward 4.

Tuscola Warriors won 10 of 16 events to dominate a triangular meet with Charleston and Unity, including Greg Lindsay’s winning performances in the one-mile and two-mile events.

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