Daily Archive : Sunday February 3, 2013



    Naperville candidates discuss downtown safety

    After a tumultuous 2012 in downtown Naperville, which included a grisly murder, multiple stabbings and several fights, the 11 city council candidates in the April 9 election are offering a variety of proposals to return the area to a more family friendly environment. Police Chief Robert Marshall, who has made cleaning up downtown his top priority, has begun enacting a multifaceted enforcement...

    Juan Garnica Jr.

    3 charged in fatal hammer attack on W. Aurora high schooler

    Police have charged three men in connection with the murder of an 18-year-old woman who was a senior at West Aurora High School, officials said Sunday night. Abigail Villalpando, 18, of Aurora, was found burned beyond recognition by the Kane County Sheriff's Department K-9 unit around 9 a.m. Saturday in a wooded area just inside the Village of Montgomery in the area of Fifth Street and Wabansia...

    Carol Stream park board President Brenda Gramann and architect Frank Parisi examine the geothermal heating and cooling system Saturday at the Fountain View Recreation Center during a walk-through for parks officials. The system uses pumps to pull up underground air to assist in warming or cooling the building.

    Carol Stream officials wowed by rec center progress

    “Wow” was the word Saturday morning as Carol Stream park district and village officials toured the Fountain View Recreation Center under construction at Gary and Lies roads. Wows for the poo, the geothermal heating and cooling system and the fitness center facing a manicured park. And wows especially to see the facility — the park district's largest building project at $18...


    Little City buoyed by $1 million gift

    When Little City Executive Director Shawn Jeffers recently got word that one of his board members wanted to talk, he immediately pulled over his car and made the call. On the receiving end was John Duffey, sharing news that the Palatine-based nonprofit organization's philanthropic pitch had in fact worked: He and his wife, Becky, wanted to make a $1 million gift.


    U of I employee solves missing wallet “cold case”

    An employee in the University of Illinois' refrigeration shop has helped solve a “cold case” of sorts.The (Champaign) News-Gazette reports Mike Porter was draining the Freon from a large freezer when he noticed a wad of what looked like dirty paper towels. When he unrolled the towels and looked more closely Porter discovered a woman's wallet.

    Daniel Guerrero and other teachers West Chicago Elementary District 33 rallied back in December during contract negotiations. Today the teachers will be on the picket lines.

    Classes canceled in Dist. 33 as teachers strike

    Teachers will be walking picket lines and thousands of students will be locked out of classes Monday in West Chicago Elementary District 33 after the school board and teachers union failed to come to a contract agreement following nearly 11 hours at the bargaining table. “Discussions have stopped,” School board spokesman Dave Barclay said said shortly before midnight. “There...

    Chris Kyle, former Navy SEAL and author of “American Sniper,” was fatally shot along with another man on a Texas gun range Saturday.

    Ex-Navy SEAL/author died pursuing his passion

    The former top Navy SEAL sniper who authorities say was killed at a Texas shooting range was devoted to maintaining camaraderie and helping his fellow veterans find their way after leaving active duty. Chris Kyle, author of the best-selling book "American Sniper," and his friend Chad Littlefield apparently were doing just that Saturday when, officials say, they were shot and killed by former...


    No one injured in Naperville restaurant grease fire

    A grease fire at a Naperville restaurant Sunday night was quickly extinguished, fire officials said. The fire department received a call from employees at Katy’s Dumpling House, 790 Royal St. George Drive, at 8:16 p.m. Sunday that there was a grease fire in the kitchen that started in a wok, and they had attempted to extinguish it, according to a news release. Everyone was evacuated safely, and...

    Lavonne “Pepper” Paire-Davis, seen here in a file photo taken in 2010, was a star of the All American Girls Professional Baseball League in the 1940s and an inspiration for the movie “A League of Their Own.” She died Saturday in Southern California. She was 88.

    Women’s baseball star, movie inspirer Davis dies

    Lavonne “Pepper” Paire-Davis, a star of the All American Girls Professional Baseball League in the 1940s and an inspiration for the movie “A League of Their Own,” has died. She was 88.

    President Barack Obama said Sunday that gays should be allowed in the Boy Scouts and women should be allowed in military combat roles, weighing in on two storied American institutions facing proposals to end long-held exclusions.

    Obama says Boy Scouts should allow gays as members
    President Barack Obama said Sunday that gays should be allowed in the Boy Scouts and women should be allowed in military combat roles, weighing in on two storied American institutions facing proposals to end long-held exclusions. The president’s comments in a pre-Super Bowl interview on CBS come ahead of this week’s meeting of the Boy Scouts’ national executive board.

    Parents, teachers and students of Crenshaw High School protest at a board meeting of the Los Angeles Unified School District headquarters to try to stop the conversion of the school to a magnet program Jan. 15. A backlash against drastic school reforms is growing across the nation.

    School turnarounds prompt community backlash

    The federal government’s push for drastic reforms at chronically low achieving schools has led to takeovers by charter operators, overhauls of staff and curriculum, and even school shutdowns across the country. It’s also generated a growing backlash among the mostly low-income, minority communities where some see the reforms as civil rights violations since turnaround efforts primarily affect...

    Kyle Thiessen, the state of Washington’s code reviser, looks at a shelf of pending legislation in his office at the Capitol in Olympia, Wash. Washington state legislators are nearing the completion of a multiyear project to replace thousands of references to male-centric words in state law with gender-neutral terms.

    Washington state considers gender-neutral language bill

    In Washington state, dairymen, freshmen and even penmanship could soon be things of the past. Over the past six years, state officials have engaged in the onerous task of changing the language used in the state’s copious laws. That process is slated to draw to a close this year.

    Gun owners rally to promote the right to bear arms in front of the Statehouse in Concord, N.H., Thursday. Speakers criticized Democrats in Washington for favoring new gun control laws following the Connecticut school shooting that left 26 dead last month.

    NRA likens universal checks to gun registry

    The National Rifle Association’s executive vice president continued to oppose background checks for all gun purchases despite polls indicating that most NRA members don’t share his position. The NRA’s Wayne LaPierre said Sunday that background checks for all gun purchases would lead to a national registry of gun owners. Critics say such a registry could lead to taxes on guns or to confiscation.

    Warrenville is looking to create a tax increment financing district to facilitate redevelopment of two areas in the city, including the Civic Center near the intersection of Butterfield and Batavia roads.

    Warrenville considers TIF plan to spur development

    About six years ago, officials worked with residents to draft a plan to transform Warrenville into a city with riverfront paths, multistory condominium buildings and a roundabout intersection. Now the city council is looking to create a new tax increment financing district to help make that “vision of revitalization” become a reality.


    Restitution clock ticking for former Kane elections chief

    A disbarred attorney who was once tapped to run elections in Kane County has a little over two weeks to cough up $14,000 or risk possibly spending jail time for indirect contempt of court. David Bruun, 72, of Elgin Township, was sentenced to eight years prison after being convicted of bilking an elderly man out of a $500,000 trust in 1998. He has been ordered by Judge James Hallock to pay a...

    The National Weather Service is predicting between 2 and 6 inches of snow to fall overnight Sunday and early Monday with snow showers lingering throughout the day.

    Up to 6 inches of snow overnight Sunday, Monday morning

    A winter storm moving into the Chicago area could create a messy commute Monday morning, officials are predicting. Between 2 and 6 inches of snow is expected to fall overnight Sunday and early Monday with snow showers lingering throughout the day, according to the National Weather Service.


    Concert at Byron Colby Barn:

    Dutch soprano Josefien Stoppelenburg and lutenist Joel Spears perform “Early Music” composed by some of the greatest songwriters in the English language at 4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10 at the Byron Colby Barn in Grayslake.

    This rare USO photograph of Hollywood legends Ingrid Bergman and Jack Benny rummaging through Adolf Hitler's vacation home is part of Jim Dryden's World War II collection.

    Hawthorn Woods man preserving history

    Jim Dryden was a boy when he received a Japanese sword his uncle brought back from World War II. Now nearing retirement, the Hawthorn Woods man has ammassed a collection or more than 100,000 war items and hopes to open a museum. “It's a hobby,” observes the reserved Dryden, who lives in Hawthorn Woods and makes his living as a financial services consultant and partner in collection...


    Wound veterans benefit:

    Raising Up Our Heroes is hosting “A Little Sweetheart Valentine’s Day Dance and Silent Auction” to support wounded veterans on Sunday, Feb. 10.


    Lake County sheriff scholarship:

    The Lake County Sheriff’s Office will award a $500 college scholarship for the 2013-14 academic year.


    Retired teachers meet:

    The Lake County Retired Teachers Association will meet at noon on Feb. 12, at Lambs Farm restaurant, Route 176 and the Tri-State Tollway, near Libertyville.

    A firefighter works at the scene of a fatal apartment fire Sunday morning in the Woodcreek Apartments complex in Huntley. Officials said one man was killed and about a dozen other residents were displaced by the early morning fire.

    Huntley apartment fire kills resident, leaves others homeless

    Allen “Al” R. Jacobs got into a car accident as a teenager that left him without the use of his legs. Longtime friend Randy Albrecht said Jacobs always feared his death would come when something happened and he wouldn’t be able to get away. Albrecht stood outside the charred remains of Jacobs’ apartment building Sunday, thinking about the life of his 47-year-old friend, cut short after an early...


    Vernon Twp. man killed, four injured in I-294 crash

    A Vernon Township man was killed and four others were injured early Sunday in a three-vehicle crash on Interstate 294 in Lake County, according to the Illinois State Police. Cesar Salas, 39, of Prairie View was pronounced dead after the crash, according to the Lake County coroner.

    Des Plaines firefighters responded to a blaze just after midnight Sunday in a commercial building in the 200 block of Graceland Avenue. Officials said the fire caused $25,000 in damages, but it could have been much worse if the building hadn’t been equipped with sprinklers.

    Early morning fire damages Des Plaines business

    An early morning blaze caused an estimated $25,000 damage to a Des Plaines building today, but fire officials say the result could have been much worse had the property not been equipped with sprinklers.

    Kelly Farley of Aurora has pushed to amend the Family Medical Leave Act of 1993. Farley is traveling to Washington, D.C., this week for the expected introduction of the Parental Bereavement Act, which would extend FMLA benefits to parents after the death of a son or daughter.

    Congress may take up Aurora man’s campaign to help grieving parents

    Kelly Farley of Aurora has been working more than two years to get the Family Medical Leave Act amended so the death of a child can qualify workers for unpaid time off. A bill to that end is expected to be introduced the week of Feb. 4 in both the U.S. House and Senate. "People need the time to grieve," he said.

    Robert Abboud, left, and Martin McLaughlin, right, are candidates in the race for Barrington Hills village president in the 2013 election.

    Barrington Hills president race all about budget

    Village President Robert ABboud and challenger Martin McLaughlin meet with our editorial board


    After Harvard visit, dozens injured in bus crash

    After a visit to Harvard University, dozens in a group of high school students and their adult chaperones were injured when their charter bus hit a bridge after police say the driver failed to heed low-clearance warning signs.

    Police and emergency personnel remain on site at the property of Jimmy Lee Sykes, a suspect accused of holding a 5-year-old boy hostage in an underground bunker on Saturday in Midland City, Ala.

    Ala. town mourns for bus driver amid standoff

    The Alabama bus driver slain at the beginning of a multi-day hostage drama was known for his acts of kindness, from fixing someone’s tractor to tilling the garden of a neighbor who had a heart attack. Charles Albert Poland Jr. was mourned by hundreds who gathered at a funeral home not far from the underground bunker where police say an Alabama man was still holding a 5-year-old boy early Sunday.

    Justin Timberlake

    Timberlake gives Super Bowl-eve comeback concert

    One of the most anticipated musical moments of the year so far happened in New Orleans and was connected to the Super Bowl — but it had nothing to do with Beyonce. Instead, it was another superstar, Justin Timberlake, who had the town buzzing as he gave his first performance in nearly five years — a sizzling, hour-long concert that featured the nattily dressed entertainer with a more than...

    San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick laughs as he walks onto the Superdome field for practice on Saturday.

    Super Bowl watch: They’d rather be on the field

    The NFL’s best have been mingling with celebrities, signing autographs for adoring fans and enjoying all the festivities New Orleans has to offer during Super Bowl weekend. But make no mistake, they’d gladly give that all up.They’d rather be on the field at the Superdome on Sunday.Case in point, what New York Giants Eli Manning told Nekesa Mumbi Moody, AP’s global lifestyles and entertainment...


    Chicago gang, drug takedown nets 43 arrests

    Police have arrested 43 suspected gang members and seized $23,000 worth of illegal drugs in a citywide gang takedown.In a press release Saturday, Chicago police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said the arrests followed investigations into gang-controlled drug markets. McCarthy says gang and drug activity are the “root cause” of violence affecting too many of the city’s neighborhoods.

    A coyote prowls a snow-covered field along Airport Road in Elgin.

    Mating season could bring more coyote sightings

    Authorities in northern Illinois are alerting residents that they could encounter an increasing number of coyotes during the mating season over the next few months. They say pet owners should be particularly aware because the animals are opportunistic and can go after easy prey.

    Dreamliners worldwide were grounded nearly three weeks ago after lithium ion batteries that are part of the planes led to a fire in one plane and smoke in a second. But new rules exempt aircraft batteries from the ban on large lithium ion batteries as cargo on flights by passenger planes.

    787 grounded, but batteries can fly

    At the same time the government certified Chicagoo-based Boeing’s 787 Dreamliners as safe, federal rules barred the type of batteries used to power the airliner’s electrical systems from being carried as cargo on passenger planes because of the fire risk. Now the situation is reversed. Dreamliners worldwide were grounded nearly three weeks ago after lithium ion batteries that are part of the...

    From left, Trace Klehm, 13, of Barrington, and Thomas Grant, 13, of East Dundee play a nature version of “go-fish” with Jacob Zupan, 11, of Addison at the Forest Preserve District of Kane County’s new Creek Bend Nature Center in St. Charles. Sixth- and seventh-graders from Harvest Christian Academy spent a few hours each day of the past week learning at the center as part of a class elective.

    Forest preserve opens new nature center in St. Charles

    The new Creek Bend Nature Center at LeRoy Oakes Forest Preserve in St. Charles opens to the public Monday, Feb. 4. The welcome sign is up, and the Forest Preserve District of Kane County hopes you’ll stop in.


    Libertyville rebates a chunk of special taxing district funds

    Libertyville is rebating more than $1.9 million from its tax increment financing fund to various entities in the district. The rebate is part of an agreement with the agencies that allowed the village to extend the life of the district, established to make improvements in the downtown area, until 2021.

    Illinois Sen. Dan Duffy, left, of Lake Barrington, got to know Jeffery Coleman, far right, and his brother Philip, during Barbershop Tours held for politician on the South Side of Chicago. Duffy is now researching legislation to better regulate the use of stun guns, after Philip Coleman died after Chicago police used a stun gun on him twice.

    Duffy mulls Taser legislation after friend's death

    The death of a friend he made on a quest to learn more about the needs of black communities has inspired a suburban state senator to look into authoring legislation regulating the use of stun-guns, or Tasers. “We need to look at stricter guidelines and training regarding the use and power of these weapons,” state Sen. Dan Duffy said.

    Robert Wilson of Glen Ellyn won first place in our January Photo Finish contest for this image of a cardinal in winter.

    Cardinal in winter helps Glen Ellyn’s Robert Wilson win monthly prize

    Sometimes holiday presents come from the most unexpected places. That's how it was for Robert Wilson, who woke up Christmas morning, padded into the kitchen of his Glen Ellyn home for a cup of coffee, and happened to glance out the window toward a bank of trees standing, oh, maybe 40 feet from the back of his house. And there, nestled in the bare branches against a drab winter background, was an...


    Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis celebrates after defeating the San Francisco 49ers 34-31 in the NFL Super Bowl XLVII football game.

    Images: 49ers vs Ravens, Super Bowl XLVII
    The San Francisco 49ers and coach Jim Harbaugh faced off against the Baltimore Ravens and coach John Harbaugh in Super Bowl XLVII. The Raven defeated the 49ers 34-31. Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco was named the MVP.

    With center Joakim Noah sidelined with plantar fasciitis in his foot, Mike McGraw explores some options the Bulls might have to obtain a center.

    Prospects to land a big man iffy at best

    With all due respect to Derrick Rose’s comeback, the most relevant question facing the Bulls right now is probably, “Should they add another big man?” Carlos Boozer’s sore right hamstring probably isn’t a big deal, but Joakim Noah’s recurrence of plantar fasciitis is concerning.

    Goalie Ray Emery was showered with praise by his teammates after his brilliant 45-save performance Saturday when the Blackhawks beat the host Calgary Flames 3-2 in a shootout.

    Emery leaves Flames shaking their heads in disbelief

    Ray Emery may never play a better game. Emery’s dazzling 45-save performance in Saturday’s 3-2 shootout win over Calgary had the Blackhawks buzzing and left the Flames kicking themselves for failing to take advantage of the tons of great scoring chances they had. “We obviously got outplayed and shouldn’t have won that game,” Patrick Kane told reporters.


    Ravens follow crazy script to the end

    The Ravens needed all the resolve they could muster to overcome a Superdome power outage and the 49ers in the Super Bowl.

    Ravens defensive back Chykie Brown celebrates after Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday in New Orleans. The Ravens won 34-31.

    Super Bowl a blowout, a blackout and a shootout

    Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens were turning the Super Bowl into a rout when, without warning, the power went off in much of the Superdome. When the game resumed 34 minutes later, it was the San Francisco 49ers who were playing lights out. The Ravens survived the frenzied comeback by the 49ers for a thrilling 34-31 win Sunday night and their second NFL championship in 11 years.

    Baltimore Ravens wide receiver and return man Jacoby Jones celebrates after defeating the San Francisco 49ers 34-31 in Super Bowl XLVII Sunday in New Orleans.

    Jacoby Jones saves best for Ravens’ Super win

    The Baltimore Ravens’ All-Pro return man was at his best in the Super Bowl on Sunday, first hauling in a 56-yard touchdown pass and then amazing the Superdome crowd with a record 108-yard kickoff return for a score — matching the longest play in NFL history in any game, regular or postseason.

    Baltimore Ravens fans celebrate the team’s Super Bowl victory Sunday night on Bourbon Street in New Orleans.

    Fans whoop it up after Baltimore’s win

    Hundreds of giddy Ravens fans poured into the streets Sunday night, whooping, hollering, dancing, and high-fiving complete strangers as they celebrated the team’s 34-31 victory over the San Francisco 49ers. On the far opposite coast, however, a spirit of hope and anticipation rapidly deteriorated to sullen disappointment as dejected 49ers fans tried to absorb their team’s loss.

    Baltimore Ravens safety Ed Reed (20) celebrates his team’s 34-31 win against the San Francisco 49ers in the NFL Super Bowl XLVII football game, Sunday, Feb. 3, 2013, in New Orleans.

    Super Bowl bites

    When Baltimore scored on the opening kickoff of the second half to make it 28-6 and then the lights went out for half an hour, you were running out of things to talk about other than the delicious dip, weren’t you? But not to worry, scoring 26 points in a 12- minute span solves that problem quickly, huh?.Thanks 49ers!

    Phil Mickelson hits from the 15th tee during the final round of the Waste Management Phoenix Open golf tournament on Sunday in Scottsdale, Ariz.

    Mickelson finishes off Phoenix Open victory

    Phil Mickelson completed a wire-to-wire victory in the Phoenix Open, again flirting with history in a dominating four-day run at TPC Scottsdale. Mickelson shot a 4-under 67 on Sunday to finish at 28-under 256, two strokes off the PGA Tour record of 254 set by Tommy Armour III in the 2003 Texas Open.

    San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick wipes his face after losing 34-31 to the Baltimore Ravens in the Super Bowl XLVII. Kaepernick finished 16 for 28 for 302 yards, threw one touchdown and ran for another.

    Kaepernick nearly leads another 49ers comeback

    Colin Kaepernick got tripped up and tossed down, then still nearly led the greatest Super Bowl comeback in just his 10th career NFL start. Rarely rattled on an impressive path to the Super Bowl, San Francisco’s second-year quarterback finally showed some inexperience on football’s big stage. Not to mention some guts.

    Harbaugh brothers Jim, left, and John meet at midfield after the Ravens’ win in Super Bowl XLVII.

    Older brother comes out on top in ‘Bro Bowl’

    The Harbaugh family sure knows how to throw a Super party. In the end, it was older brother John Harbaugh and his Baltimore Ravens who came out on top, hanging on for a 34-31 win over Jim Harbaugh and his San Francisco 49ers in a Super Bowl that had everything. After the game, John Harbaugh said it was hard to compete against his brother.

    Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco celebrates a touchdown against the San Francisco 49ers during the first half of Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday in New Orleans. Flacco threw three TDs in the first half.

    Flacco wins Super Bowl MVP award

    Capping a pretty perfect postseason, Joe Flacco completed 22 of 33 passes for 287 yards and three first-half touchdowns Sunday to earn Super Bowl MVP honors for leading the Baltimore Ravens to a 34-31 victory over the San Francisco 49ers.

    Half the lights are out in the Superdome during a power outage in the second half of Super Bowl XLVII between the San Francisco 49ers and Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.

    5 moments to remember from Super Bowl XLVII

    Five memorable moments from Super Bowl XLVII:1. THE NIGHT THE LIGHTS WENT OUT: Superdome power outage leaves NFL’s showcase game in the dark for more than a half-hour.2. BEYONCE: Came out reunited with Destiny’s Child band mates in an electrifying performance. 3. PLAY OF THE GAME: Baltimore’s Jacoby Jones returned a kick 108 yards for an NFL postseason record. 4. BEST ADS: Godaddy.com’s extended kiss and Coke’s desert chase were among the commercials that caused a stir.5. BROTHER AGAINST BROTHER: Baltimore coach John Harbaugh on meeting his brother Jim, the 49ers coach, at the end of the game: “I told him I loved him. He said congratulations.”

    A fan looks around the Superdome after half the lights went out during a power outage in the second half of NFL Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday in New Orleans.

    Power outage stops Super Bowl for 34 minutes

    The Super Bowl was halted because of a power outage Sunday, plunging parts of the Superdome into darkness and leading to a 34-minute delay in the biggest game of the year. The Baltimore Ravens were leading the San Francisco 49ers 28-6 when most of the lights in the 73,000-seat building went out with 13:22 left in the third quarter.

    Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis celebrates after the defense stopped the San Francisco 49ers on fourth-and-goal during the second half of Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday in New Orleans. The Ravens won 34-31.

    Ray Lewis ends brilliant career with championship

    Ray Lewis will ride into retirement as a champion. Baltimore’s standout middle linebacker began his final night on the football field with a motivational speech to his teammates. He ended it looking upward into a shower of silver streamers and purple confetti after the Ravens beat the San Francisco 49ers 34-31 Sunday night to win the Super Bowl.

    Illinois’ guard D.J. Richardson (1) tries to shoot past Wisconsin’s forward/center Jared Berggren (40) in the first half Sunday at Assembly Hall in Champaign.

    Wisconsin grinds out win at Illinois, 74-68

    Frank Kaminsky scored a career-high 19 points Sunday and, combined with Ben Brust’s 20 points, led the Badgers to a 74-68 win at Illinois that wasn’t as close as the score indicated. The win keeps the Badgers (15-7, 6-3) in fifth place in the Big Ten and was particularly sweet, Kaminsky said, since he and Brust are both from the Chicago area.

    Marc Trestman was a gutsy, unconventional choice by the Bears to lead their organization, but San Francisco made a similar decision with Jim Harbaugh and it’s worked out quite well for the 49ers.

    Bears’ Trestman might be next great surprise

    Jim Harbaugh is all the proof you need that successful NFL head coaches come from the strangest of beginnings, and lends hope to the idea that the Bears’ Marc Trestman could accomplish great things in Chicago.

    Baltimore Ravens' Morgan Cox (46), kicker Justin Tucker (9) and punter Sam Koch (4) warm up before the NFL Super Bowl XLVII football game against the San Francisco 49ers, Sunday, Feb. 3, 2013, in New Orleans. After a season rife with scandal and bad news, what will the NFL do next? Expand the season by two games? Address performance enhancing drugs? Or keep the status quo?

    What comes now for NFL after tumultuous season?

    The Super Bowl closes a tumultuous year for the NFL. A pay-for-pain bounty scandal. A lockout of officials resolved only after a ludicrous game-ending call. Zero minority hires for 15 coach or general manager openings. ( Just to name a few.) And yet the league is as popular as ever. Uncertain, though, is what the future holds for an NFL still coming to grips with the dangers of a brutal sport that makes it tremendously wealthy.

    Miami Heat forward LeBron James slams home a dunk against the Toronto Raptors during second half NBA basketball action in Toronto Sunday Feb. 3, 2013. James would go on to score 30 points during the game. The victory guarantees Miami the top spot in the Eastern Conference as of Feb. 3, percentage points ahead of the New York Knicks. That means Heat coach Erik Spoelstra and his staff will be in charge when the All-Stars suit up in Houston in two weeks.

    Heat win to put Spoelstra on East All-Star’s bench

    LeBron James scored 30 points, Chris Bosh had 28 against his former team and the Miami Heat beat Toronto 100-85 Sunday for their 10th straight victory over the Raptors. Dwyane Wade added 23 points as the Heat bounced back after Friday’s 102-89 loss at Indiana, ensuring their team Super Bowl viewing party would be a happy one.


    Penguins get 3rd win in row, topping Capitals 6-3

    It was a game of disputed deflections and odd bounces, with the puck behaving more like that oblong ball with the laces more commonly associated with Super Bowl Sunday. The strangest carom of all came on a simple dump-in that hit a stanchion along the glass and went into a net deserted by a befuddled goaltender.


    No. 12 Louisville routs No. 25 Marquette 70-51

    Two weeks of struggle had begun to raise questions about Louisville’s ability to contend in the Big East. And while some concerns remain to be addressed over the second half of their league schedule, the No. 12 Cardinals reclaimed some of their swagger with Sunday’s 70-51 rout of No. 25 Marquette.


    Desharnais, Cole lead Canadiens over Senators 2-1

    David Desharnais and Erik Cole scored first-period goals and the Montreal Canadiens held on for a 2-1 victory over the Ottawa Senators on Sunday. The win completed a sweep of weekend matinees at home for Montreal (6-2-0) after a 6-1 win Saturday over the Buffalo Sabres. The Canadiens have won five straight at home after dropping their home opener to Toronto on Jan. 19.


    Campbell lifts Panthers to 4-3 win over Sabres

    Defenseman Brian Campbell scored on the power play with 10:33 remaining to cap Florida’s three-goal rally and the Panthers beat the Buffalo Sabres 4-3 on Sunday.


    Celts now 4-0 without Rondo, top Clippers 106-104

    The Celtics keep rolling without Rajon Rondo. Not even a late comeback by one of the NBA’s best teams could keep Boston from beating the Los Angeles Clippers 106-104 on Sunday and improve to 4-0 since a knee injury ended their star point guard’s season.


    Gasol helps Lakers hold on to beat Pistons 98-97

    Paul Gasol had 23 points and 10 rebounds and was the last line of defense on Detroit’s final alley-oop attempt Sunday. The Lakers blew an 18-point third-quarter lead but overcame their late free throw struggles to win for the fifth time in six games.

    Minnesota’s Andre Hollins, right, lays up as Iowa’s Mike Gesell tries to block the shot in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game on Sunday in Minneapolis. Minnesota won 62-59.

    No. 23 Minnesota escapes Iowa with 62-59 win

    Minnesota got into another game that was more about poise and hustle than shooting and passing. This time, the Gophers pulled out a victory. Austin Hollins hit the go-ahead 3-pointer with 11.6 seconds left, lifting No. 23 Minnesota to a 62-59 win over Iowa on Sunday afternoon.

    Chicago Blackhawks goalie Ray Emery, right, deflects away the puck as Calgary Flames' Tim Jackman crashes into him during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Calgary, Alberta, Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jeff McIntosh)

    Emery steals the show for Hawks

    It was the very definition of a goalie win. With Ray Emery making 42 saves in regulation and 45 through overtime, the Blackhawks beat the Calgary Flames 3-2 in a shootout Saturday night. It didn’t look good for Emery and the Hawks when Jay Bouwmeester gave the Flames a 2-1 lead with 35 seconds to play, but Marian Hossa tied it on his sixth goal with three seconds left with Emery pulled for a sixth attacker.

    Chicago Blackhawks goalie Ray Emery, right, deflects away the puck as Calgary Flames’ Tim Jackman crashes into him Saturday in Calgary. The Blackhawks beat the Flames in a shootout 3-2.

    Blackhawks top Flames in shootout 3-2

    Marian Hossa scored the tying goal with 2.3 seconds left in the third, Patrick Kane added a goal in regulation then had the shootout winner and the Chicago Blackhawks earned a 3-2 win over the Calgary Flames on Saturday night. Ray Emery had 45 saves for Chicago (7-0-2), which stayed unbeaten in regulation.


    In this photo from 2009, a worker steps through the maze of hoses being used at a remote fracking site being run by Halliburton for natural-gas producer Williams in Rulison, Colo. The oil and gas industry is trying to ease environmental concerns by developing non-toxic fluids for the drilling process known as fracking.

    Energy industry develops nontoxic fracking fluids

    The oil and gas industry is trying to ease environmental concerns by developing nontoxic fluids for the drilling process known as fracking, but it’s not clear whether the new product will be widely embraced by drilling companies. Houston-based energy giant Halliburton Inc. has developed a product called CleanStim, which uses only food-industry ingredients. Other companies have developed nontoxic fluids as well.

    Lyft driver Nancy Tcheou uses her phone to accept a ride from a passenger in San Francisco. Internet-enabled ridesharing services such as Lyft, Uber and Sidecar are expanding rapidly in San Francisco, New York and other U.S. cities, billing themselves as a high-tech, low-cost alternative to cabs.

    Ride-hailing apps offer new way to get around town

    When Hesky Kutscher needed to get across town, he didn’t call a taxi. He tapped a smartphone app called Lyft, which allows users to request car rides. Minutes later, a black hatchback with a big fluffy, pink mustache on its grille pulled up. Kutscher hopped in the front seat and gave the driver a fist bump. Then they cruised over the hilly streets of San Francisco, chatting like neighbors until he was dropped off near Union Square.


    Money fund disclosures not just about need to know

    Goldman Sachs on Jan. 9 became the first to post daily values of its money funds. More than a half-dozen other companies have since followed suit or announced similar plans. They include the largest money fund provider, Fidelity Investments, as well as such names as Charles Schwab, Federated Investors, BlackRock, JPMorgan and Charles Schwab. By voluntarily making these daily disclosures, the money fund industry is doing more than just serving investors. It's trying to convince regulators that it's open to some degree of change, in hopes of heading off more far-reaching rules that are under consideration to stabilize money funds.


    Work Advice: “You’re fired. Get back to work.”

    Karla L. Miller writes an advice column on navigating the modern workplace. This week's questions deal with a sudden firing and how to make amends after telling a lie at work.


    What you need to know about sequestration
    With all feel-good talk about immigration reform, fans of conflict and dysfunction may fear the arrival of genuine bipartisanship in Washington. Not to worry! Another budget crisis is almost upon us! This time it's not the dread fiscal cliff or the debt ceiling, but rather the "sequester" — the extremely crude cutting mechanism that essentially nobody favors but that seems likely to happen anyway.


    States have many questions on Medicaid expansion

    As state legislative sessions advance, lawmakers are debating whether to expand their Medicaid programs as provided by President Barack Obama's health care law. It could be one of the most important decisions this year. So far 17 states and the District of Columbia have signaled they will go ahead, while 11 states are refusing. The rest are weighing options.


    Opinion: Don’t repay the national debt

    Global financial markets are sending a clear signal to the United States. At a time when demand for goods and services is depressed, demand for American government debt is sky-high. The responsible choice is to let the supply meet the demand and borrow more.

    The captain of the USS Underwood, Peter T. Mirisola, fires a grenade launcher during small arms qualifications onboard the ship while patrolling in international waters near Panama. In the most expensive initiative in Latin America since the Cold War, the U.S. has militarized the battle against drug traffickers, spending more than $20 billion in the past decade. U.S. Army troops, Air Force pilots and Navy ships outfitted with Coast Guard counternarcotics teams are routinely deployed to chase, track and capture drug smugglers.

    U.S. military expands its drug war in Latin America

    In the most expensive initiative in Latin America since the Cold War, the U.S. has militarized the battle against the traffickers, spending more than $20 billion in the past decade. U.S. Army troops, Air Force pilots and Navy ships outfitted with Coast Guard counter-narcotics teams are routinely deployed to chase, track and capture drug smugglers. "The results are historic and have tremendous implications, not just for the United States and the Western Hemisphere, but for the world," U.S. drug czar Gil Kerlikowske said.

    President Barack Obama thinks his health care law makes states an offer they can’t refuse. Whether to expand Medicaid — the federal-state program for the poor and disabled — could be the most important decision facing governors and legislatures this year. The repercussions go beyond their budgets, directly affecting the well-being of residents and the finances of critical hospitals. Awaiting decisions are people like Debra Walker, a part-time home health care provider. She had a good job with health insurance until she got laid off in 2007.

    Money fears vs. real benefits in Medicaid choice

    President Barack Obama thinks his health care law makes states an offer they can't refuse. Whether to expand Medicaid, the federal-state program for the poor and disabled, could be the most important decision facing governors and legislatures this year. The repercussions go beyond their budgets, directly affecting the well-being of residents and the finances of critical hospitals.

    Gabriele Albertini stands in front of the Milan gothic cathedral in Italy. Lombardy, Italy’s most populous and economically productive region, is a key battleground in the upcoming national elections, with the regional race not only likely to determine who can most reliably govern the euro zone’s third-largest economy but also testing emerging political alliances.

    Lombardy stars as kingmaker in national elections

    One region looms large over Italy's upcoming election: Lombardy. The nation's industrial powerhouse and home to its financial capital Milan, the region generates a fifth of Italy's wealth and boasts one-sixth of its population. The way Lombardy goes will likely determine whether the eurozone's third largest economy gets the stable government it needs to take strong action against its economic crisis.

    About 10 million seniors currently rely on others for daily care, such as help getting dressed, preparing meals or taking medication. That number will only increase as more of the nation’s 78 million baby boomers enter old age. Nearly 7 in 10 people will need some form of long-term care after turning 65, according to the Georgetown University Public Policy Institute.

    As America ages, senior care options flourish

    Nearly 7 in 10 people will need some form of long-term care after turning 65, according to the Georgetown University Public Policy Institute. "Nobody wants to go to a nursing home, it's the last resort," says James Firman, president of the National Council on Aging. "People want to stay in their own home, and if they can't, they want to go to a place where they can get assistance but that still feels homelike."

    Devon Lawrence hasn't had working heat since Superstorm Sandy's floodwaters destroyed the oil burner in the basement. Three months after Sandy struck, thousands of storm victims in New York and New Jersey are stuck in limbo. Waiting for the heat to come on, for insurance money to come through, for loans to be approved. Waiting, in a broader sense, for their upended lives to get back to normal.

    3 months after Sandy, victims waiting for relief

    Three months after Sandy struck, thousands of storm victims in New York and New Jersey are stuck in limbo. Waiting for the heat to come on, for insurance money to come through, for loans to be approved. Waiting, in a broader sense, for their upended lives to get back to normal. While Congress passed a $50.5 billion emergency aid package on Monday, many say the rebuilding has been complicated over the past several weeks by bureaucracy.

Life & Entertainment

    Ben Affleck has won the top film honor from the Directors Guild of America for his CIA thriller “Argo,” further sealing its status as best-picture front-runner at the Academy Awards.

    'Girls,' 'Argo' earn Directors Guild honors

    Ben Affleck has won the top film honor from the Directors Guild of America for his CIA thriller “Argo,” further sealing its status as best-picture front-runner at the Academy Awards. Saturday's prize also normally would make Affleck a near shoo-in to win best-director at the Feb. 24 Oscars, since the Directors Guild recipient nearly always goes on to claim the same prize at Hollywood's biggest night.

    Taco Bell’s ad showed octogenarians sneaking out to go party, causing trouble and winding up in a Taco Bell parking lot eating tacos

    10 Super Bowl ads that stood out

    In a nail biter, the Baltimore Ravens topped the San Francisco 49ers during the Super Bowl XLVII, during which a half-hour long blackout added to the drama. But in between plays there were 10 ads that stood out. Here are the ads that will be the buzz around the water cooler — and on social media sites — on Monday.

    Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson shrugged off aliens so he could get more milk for his kids in a Super Bowl spot for the Milk Processor Education Program.

    Super Bowl ads heavy on drama

    Super Bowl ads this year morphed into mini soap operas. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson shrugged off aliens so he could get more milk for his kids in a Super Bowl spot for the Milk Processor Education Program. Anheuser-Busch’s commercial told the story of a baby Clydesdale growing up and returning to his owner for a heartfelt hug years later. And a Jeep ad portrayed the trials and triumphs of families waiting for their return of family members.

    Beyonce performs during the halftime show of the Super Bowl on Sunday in New Orleans.

    Images: Super Bowl entertainment
    Jennifer Hudson and a chorus from Sandy Hook Elementary School opened with "God Bless America." Alicia Keys delivered the national anthem. And Beyonce rocked the halftime show at Super Bowl XLVII.

    Beyoncé performs during the halftime show of Super Bowl XLVII between the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday in New Orleans.

    Beyonce electrifies at Super Bowl halftime show

    If naysayers still doubted Beyonce’s singing talents — even after her national anthem performance this week at a press conference — the singer proved she is an exceptional performer at the Super Bowl halftime show. Beyonce opened and closed her set belting songs, and in between she danced hard and heavy — and better than most contemporary pop stars.

    Head to the Morton Arboretum for a taste of the sweet life at the Chocolate Expo and Market today.

    Sunday picks: Warm up at Morton's Chocolate Expo

    Love chocolate? Then the Morton Arboretum is where you'll want to be Sunday when it hosts the Chocolate Expo and Market. Take a blind taste test at noon and learn more about how chocolate is made at free presentations. Yum! Big Noise Theatre Company presents Garson Kanin's “Born Yesterday” at Prairie Lakes Theatre in Des Plaines.

    A Secret Service agent stands watch while President-elect Barack Obama, not shown, visits the Lincoln Memorial with his family in Washington. The 16th president was one of America's most admired, rising from humble roots in a frontier cabin to become a self-educated lawyer and brilliant politician.

    Washington, D.C., puts out welcome mat for Lincoln fans

    Whether you're interested in Abraham Lincoln the president or "Lincoln" the movie, Washington is a downright thrilling destination. Many museums are offering special exhibits for the 150th anniversary of the Civil War and the Emancipation Proclamation. Other sites can be visited any time: the Lincoln Memorial, the cottage where he summered, Ford's Theatre, where he was shot, and the Petersen House, where he died.

    From Latin America with Love is a night of tango, South American music and romance featuring Dois no Choro, at the Richard H. Driehaus Museum on Feb. 7.

    On the road: A night of tango and song

    Celebrate Valentine's Day early with music and dance that's all about romance at Chicago's Richard H. Driehaus Museum. It's a night of tango, music and song with Dois no Choro, a duo featuring flutist Julie Koidin and singer-guitarist Paulinho Garcia, who will perform songs from a romantic South American repertoire. There's also the the big Mardi Gras weekend in Galena with a parade, snow sculpting and a masquerade ball.


    Tips for keeping germs at bay at 35,000 feet

    Recently while flying back to Chicago from Cancun, Mexico, I was seated behind a couple wearing masks — the Lone Ranger style. Only they weren't trying to hide their identity. They were trying to avoid catching the flu that has become epidemic this winter. And with good reason. Half the passengers on the plane were coughing, sneezing or looking like death was imminent and in some cases would be welcome.

    Cut crystal from the early 1900s.

    Cut glass etched a place in American history

    Q. I have two pieces of cut crystal that were given to my grandparents as wedding presents in the early 1900s. One is a cheese or butter dish with a bell-shaped cover. It is about 9 inches high and sits on an under plate 9 inches in diameter. The other piece is a pitcher that is about 11 inches tall.

    Blind skier Vic Gurganious cruises down a run at Colorado’s Winter Park resort. Gurganious, a member of the alpine ski team at the National Ability Center in Park City, Utah, says he reaches speeds of up to 60 mph while communicating with his guide via a two-way radio built into his helmet.

    No fear for blind skiers looking for a thrill

    Taking a deep breath, Wally Mozdzierz points his skis down the icy slope and leans forward. He hears the snow crunch and feels the contours change beneath him as he glides swiftly down the mountain, his guide following close behind. The run is exhilarating and adrenaline pumping — common sensations for anyone on the slopes. But for Mozdzierz, it’s different. He’s totally blind.

    A new showerhead can change the entire look and feel of your tub and shower area.

    Easy plumbing upgrades will make a big difference

    Q. I would like to do some upgrades around my house. My question is -- although my plumbing system is working properly, what are some easy plumbing upgrades you recommend to help my home and family?


    How to insulate your attic access opening

    Q. I just moved into a new house and I went up into the attic to store some holiday decorations. There was no insulation on the cover or seals around it. Shouldn't the cover be insulated and sealed?

    Medical student Malik Abdullah, left, speaks with Joan Terry about her sister, donor Judy A. Clemens, after a memorial service for bodies donated to science at Indiana University School of Medicine — Northwest.

    Cadavers honored in med student dissection lab

    When medical students have finished their study and practice on cadavers, they often hold a respectful memorial service to honor these bodies donated to science. But the ceremonies at Indiana University School of Medicine-Northwest have a surreal twist: Relatives gather around the cold steel tables where their loved ones were dissected and which now hold their remains beneath metal covers. The tables are topped with white or burgundy-colored shrouds, flags for military veterans, flowers and candles.

    Passengers disembark from a train past a sign advertising the 100th anniversary of Grand Central Terminal in New York. The country’s most famous train station and one of the finest examples of Beaux Arts architecture in America turns 100 on Feb. 1.

    NYC’s Grand Central Terminal marks 100 years

    Grand Central, the country's most famous train station and one of the finest examples of Beaux Arts architecture in America, turns 100 on Feb. 1. Its centennial comes 15 years after a triumphant renovation that removed decades of grime and restored its glittering chandeliers, cathedral windows and famous ceiling depicting a night sky. The building's survival is also a testament to historic preservation.


    Grandpa’s gifts, not love, stopped at age 18

    Q. Ever since my two sons were born (now 19 and 16), my father has sent a modest monetary gift on their birthdays and Christmas. This Christmas, my father sent me a chatty email explaining that he would not be sending my older son a Christmas gift because it was his policy not to send gifts to anyone over 18.


    Landlord is required to return any overpayment of rent

    Q. I rent an apartment on a month-to-month basis and have given 30-day written notice to terminate my tenancy. It will expire on the seventh day of next month. I didn't know that I would be changing jobs until the day I gave notice so I have already paid my rent in full for next month.

    Five “Wives with Knives” episodes will be televised as counterprogramming to the Super Bowl Sunday on the Investigation Discovery network.

    Super Bowl counterprogramming shows ID’s irreverence

    Men might want to take note if their loved one turns to the Investigation Discovery network Sunday for Super Bowl counterprogramming, where a marathon of "Wives With Knives" episodes will be running during the game. It is a typically colorful programming choice by a young network that has grown quickly because of them.

    Throw pillows allow homeowners to switch out trends with the season, left; in a neutral room, a bold Dutch oven can declare a kitchen in tune with the trends.

    Emerald is color of the year

    When Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Institute, chose the color of 2009, the United States was sinking deep into a recession and the bright yellow of Mimosa, it was hoped, would energize and encourage the country. So what's the right color for an economy that's hopefully on the mend? Well, emerald green, of course.

    In this May 20, 2010 file photo, poet Maya Angelou smiles as she greets guests at a garden party at her home in Winston-Salem, N.C. In the midst of talking black history with Grammy-winning singer Alicia Keys, Angelou breaks out singing a hymn a cappella. She wants to show Keys, a New Yorker, what “lining out,” call-and-response singing that is popular in Southern black churches, sounds like. That teaching moment is one of many during Angelou’s third annual Black History Month program, “Telling Our Stories,” airing on more than 175 public radio stations nationwide throughout the month.

    Angelou celebrates black history with Oprah, Keys

    “Telling Our Stories,” Maya Angelou’s third annual Black History Month program, is airing on more than 175 public radio stations nationwide throughout February. Angelou says she is obligated to share her knowledge and experience with younger people in a way that is not “preaching” but gives context to the “human truth.” We owe the truth, not just the facts,” she said



    Editorial: Tackling bill a way to continue the debate

    A proposal to limit the number of days young football players in Illinois can tackle in practice should spark a good debate about player safety, a Daiy Herald editorial says.


    The price of moral grandstanding

    Columnist George Will: For Rahm Emanuel to say gun makers "profit from gun violence" is as sensible as saying automobile manufacturers "profit from highway carnage." Emanuel, who is more intelligent than he sounds, must know that not one fewer gun will be made, sold or misused because Chicago is wagging its finger at banks.


    ‘Old downtown’ also needs attention
    A Mundelein letter to the editor: Doesn’t our existing downtown deserve our next mayor’s attention?


    Hire a vet to protect schools
    A Vernon Hills letter to the editor: There is a lot of discussion about how much additional security is needed in schools to protect our children from recent tragedies. My suggestion is hire a returning vet.


    Times have changed the need for guns
    A letter to the editor:


    Pension payments will take all new revenue
    A Mount Prospect letter to the editor: But to once again do nothing, as the General Assembly has done for the past two years in the face of a mounting financial catastrophe, will deny proper funding to needed services.


    Obama overusing executive orders
    A Prospect Heights letter to the editor: "To have a chief executive bypass Congress by executive order goes against our history as a democratic country and makes a mockery of all the veterans who sacrificed their lives to protect our democratic form of government.” I think Judge Stevens said it very well.


    We all need to look out for each other
    A Hoffman Estates letter to the editor: We should be more vigilant when we allow a recluse to remain in his or her own world. We are in a small sense responsible for not doing anything if they commit a crime. Remember that it takes a village.


    Effort to stamp out Christian influence
    An Elgin letter to the editor: Homosexual "marriage" should continue to be prohibited and civil unions also must be repealed. You see, it's not a matter of them being different; it is that the very definition of moral behavior is being changed by those who have no authority to do so.


    Don’t pay pols until pension bill done
    A Sleepy Holllow letter to the editor: With the swearing in of Illinois' General Assembly, I looked back at Illinois's highest 2012 legislative priority. Pension reform trumped all other issues. The state's current five retirement systems are unsustainable and adversely impacting the funding of all other state programs including a plethora of social services as well as education.


    Many thanks for luminaria fundraiser
    A Wheaton letter to the editor: The Wheaton Chapter of the Infant Welfare Society of Chicago wishes thank all those who supported its 43rd annual luminaria fundraiser this past December. The Infant Welfare Society provides health care to women and children in need and recently celebrated its 100th year.


    Show support for New Philharmonic
    A Wheaton letter to the editor: Thank you for running your informative article Jan. 26 concerning the pending decision on the fate of the New Philharmonic Orchestra. I had been unaware that their future was in jeopardy because the College of DuPage was losing money on their performances, especially during the current period while the MAC Performing Arts Center is being renovated.


    Brave new world of text messaging, courtroom cameras

    Providing quick updates, courthouse photos and videos are becoming routine in this digital age, says Jim Davis, news director for the DuPage and Fox Valley editions.


    Why aren’t cars as controlled as guns?
    A Lake Villa letter to the editor: It is factually based that three times as many people are killed by automobile accidents and drunk drivers than are killed annually by guns. Why is there no hue and cry to have major car control or get rid of automobiles altogether because of this clear-cut slaughter?


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