Daily Archive : Monday February 25, 2013



    Boyfriend saves Antioch family from carbon monoxide poisoning

    An Antioch family poisoned by carbon monoxide was rescued just in time Monday morning when their daugher's boyfriend stopped by the house and realized something was wrong.

    Chicago Alderman Joe Moreno visits Riley School.

    Dist. 21 students study immigration to create own reform proposal

    Dressed in old-fashioned shawls and hats, and clutching their passports while juggling cardboard boxes that served as their suitcases, the students filed through processing and inspection stations — to be approved, detained or deported. Ellis Island closed in 1954, but second-graders at Riley School in Arlington Heights experienced all of its uncertainties and tension firsthand earlier this...


    Another drug case dismissed in wake of charges against Schaumburg cops

    Cook County prosecutors dismissed drug charges Monday against a Schaumburg man because of the involvement of a former Schaumburg undercover police officer now facing charges of drug conspiracy in DuPage County. John Abel, 21, was being held at Cook County Jail on a $400,000 bond.


    How to donate to Foundation Fighting Blindness
    How to donate to the Foundation Fighting Blindness'eighth annual Chicagoland Vision Walk


    “If I Couldn’t See,” a poem

    A poem written by Teagan Hayes of Cary. Her brother, Nathan, was diagnosed with RP.

    Anthony Beale

    Turnout expected to be low in congressional primary

    Candidates for Jesse Jackson Jr.’s former congressional seat made their final push for votes Monday ahead of a high-stakes primary, but turnout was expected to be paltry despite the lurid headlines surrounding the disgraced Chicago Democrat and millions in outside super PAC money driven largely by the guns debate.


    Report: State’s unpaid bills to hit $22 billion by 2018

    Illinois’ backlog of unpaid bills will reach nearly $22 billion within five years if lawmakers don’t take action to fix the state’s worst-in-the-nation pension crisis, according to an analysis released Monday by a Chicago-based watchdog group.

    Drew Peterson

    Peterson’s prison home is Pontiac

    Inmate M35067 will spend 38 years in the maximum-security Pontiac Correctional Center for murdering his third wife. Prison officials confirmed Monday that Drew Peterson was moved to the prison after being processed at the Stateville Correctional Center in Crest Hill on Friday.

    U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, a Springfield Democrat.

    Illinois senators at center of rocky vote on Hagel

    Illinois appears smack dab in the middle of the U.S. Senate's Hagel confirmation controversy, with Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin actively lobbying for and Republican Sen. Mark Kirk lobbying against the confirmation of the Obama administration's pick for defense secretary.

    Sarah Mignin

    Elderly St. Charles woman found

    An elderly St. Charles woman missing since Sunday morning was found safe this evening in East Lansing, Mich. Sarah Mignin, 89, had been reported missing Sunday morning.


    First lady's 'Let's Move' tour to stop in Chicago

    First lady Michelle Obama will stop in Chicago this week to promote physical activity in schools. Obama's Thursday appearance is part of a national tour to celebrate the third anniversary of her "Let's Move" initiative.


    Concealed carry going before state House on Tuesday

    The Illinois House will break down the issue of carrying concealed firearms into more than two dozen votes in a seldom-used process beginning Tuesday. House Speaker Michael Madigan is using the so-called weekly order of business to allow lawmakers to submit amendments to a gun-control bill he intentionally left blank. That allows legislators to go on the record as voting `yes' or `no' on...


    Dist. 41 pushes forward with Think Tank initiative

    Glen Ellyn Elementary District 41 officials on Monday announced their plans for a partial implementation of the controversial Think Tank initiative beginning next school year. Principals from each of the district’s four elementary schools presented recommendations to the school board for how the program would be put in place at each building.


    Fox River trustees approve plan to move third fire station

    Taxpayers served by the Fox River & Countryside Fire/Rescue District could see better service times as soon as this fall, according to a plan approved Monday night to build a third fire station that will take advantage of two key Fox River crossings. Trustees approved a $150,000 purchase of 2.2 acres of land at 6N330 Route 25 in unincorporated Kane County near St. Charles. The site is the former...


    Man paroled in fatal DUI crash charged with another DUI

    Walter Depner, 61, of Mount Prospect, was charged with DUI again Sunday. Depner is currently out on parole after being convicted in the DUI crash that killed a mom and her three kids in 1999.


    U-46 board OKs revised calendar with Aug. 19 start date

    Elgin Area School District U-46 board of education members unanimously voted to approve a 2013-14 school calendar Monday night that includes a start date of Aug. 19 and will keep students in school on Veterans Day. The calendar was originally presented to the board Jan. 28 but was later revised, reflecting input from parents, students, teachers and community members. The community leapt into the...


    Mom freed after conviction overturned

    A Chicago woman whose conviction in the death of her 4-year-old son was overturned walked out of prison Monday, eight years after she was locked up for what she always insisted was a tragic accident. Nicole Harris walked into the reception area of Dwight Correctional Center and into the arms of her other son, now 13, who has long said that his mother did not strangle his little brother.

    From left to right, Wheeling’s Danni Allen, Joe Ostaszewski, Jackson Carter, Gina McDonald, Alexandra “Alex” Reid, Jeff Nichols try to conquer their fears on “The Biggest Loser.”

    Wheeling woman makes final five on ‘Biggest Loser’

    Danni Allen, a Wheeling resident and graduate of Mundelein High School, made it to "makeover week" on The Biggest Loser, an NBC weight-loss show, and won a trip home to show her family and friends the new her after losing 74 pounds.

    Vehicles navigate along Interstate 27 during blizzard conditions in Lubbock, Texas, Monday.

    Winter storm watch in effect; up to 8 inches expected
    A storm spreading blizzard conditions from northwestern Texas to Missouri and Iowa is expected to hit the Chicago area beginning Tuesday morning. A winter storm watch remains in effect until Tuesday evening with as much as six inches predicted to fall. Wet snow, possibly mixed with sleet, will begin Tuesday morning and continue through the afternoon. Snow may be heavy at times before tapering to...

    A state legislator’s proposal to once again merge the DuPage County Forest Preserve District with the DuPage County Board is drawing fire from forest preserve officials.

    DuPage forest commissioners oppose consolidation proposal

    The biggest selling point of breaking the DuPage County Forest Preserve Commission away from the county board more than a decade ago was to help prevent conflicts of interest. But now a state lawmaker is proposing legislation to undue the historic split. Before the split, "we were finding roads run though our forest preserves," one commissioner said. Control over the district’s significant cash...

    Mediterranean diets have long been touted as heart-healthy, but that’s based on observational studies. Now, one of the longest and most scientific tests suggests this style of eating can cut the chance of suffering heart-related problems, especially strokes, in older people at high risk of them.

    Mediterranean-style diets found to cut heart risks

    Pour on the olive oil, preferably over fish and vegetables: One of the longest and most scientific tests of a Mediterranean diet suggests this style of eating can cut the chance of suffering heart-related problems, especially strokes, in older people at high risk of them.

    This graphic shows the five moons in their orbits around Pluto. An online vote to name Pluto’s two newest, itty-bitty moon concluded Monday, and the winner is Vulcan, a name suggested by actor William Shatner, who played Capt. Kirk in the original “Star Trek” TV series.

    Capt. Kirk’s Vulcan entry wins Pluto moons contest

    “Star Trek” fans, rejoice. An online vote to name Pluto’s two newest, itty-bitty moons is over. And No. 1 is Vulcan, a name suggested by actor William Shatner, who played Capt. Kirk in the original “Star Trek” TV series.


    Ela Township scholarships available to LZHS students

    Five local scholarships are available to Lake Zurich High School students who live in Ela Township.


    Jobapalooza at CLC

    Jobapalooza, Lake County’s largest job and resource fair for youth aged 15 to 21, will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, March 7 at the College of Lake County’s main campus in Grayslake.


    County Clerk Orr says Palatine Township flier ‘inappropriately’ uses his name

    Cook County Clerk David Orr issued a statement Monday stating a campaign flier distributed by a slate of Palatine Township candidates “inappropriately” uses his name, title and logo. Orr said the flier might give the false impression that he endorses the slate.


    Walgreens coming to Lakemoor

    Construction of a Walgreens store is expected to begin within the next two months on the southeast corner of Darrell Road and Route 120 in Lakemoor.

    Former Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop, who raised the profile of the surgeon general by riveting America’s attention on the then-emerging disease known as AIDS and by railing against smoking, died Monday at age 96.

    Ex-Surgeon General C. Everett Koop dies

    C. Everett Koop, who raised the profile of the surgeon general by riveting America’s attention on the then-emerging disease known as AIDS and by railing against smoking, has died in New Hampshire at age 96.


    Dist. 203 superintendent launches community outreach program

    Since taking over the reins of Naperville Unit District 203 last year, Superintendent Dan Bridges has met a lot of people and talked about a lot of education and community issues. Now he’s devised a plan to pick the best ideas he’s heard and put them out to the community to see where they go.

    Geneva High School graduate Raymond Allen Kaligian III died at his Houston home last week when fumes from a running car seeped into his bedroom as he slept. An accomplished athlete in high school, Kaligian was considered a rising star with Phillips 66 company.

    Weekend in Review: Geneva grad dies in unlikely string of events

    What you may have missed over the weekend: Geneva grad dies in tragic string of unlikely events; grocery stores battle for suburban marketplace; federal cuts could affect airports; Redflex scandal could impact suburban red-light cameras; first woman on Illinois Supreme Court dies;Carol Stream woman dies in Eisenhower crash; Hawks win in shutout; and Affleck wins Oscar for "Argo."

    John Mahoney, currently starring in Steppenwolf Theatre Company’s “The Birthday Party” with Moira Harris, returns to Northlight Theatre in Skokie as part of the 2013-14 season announced Monday.

    Northlight Theatre announces partial season

    John Mahoney returns to Northglight Theatre in a world premiere production, the Skokie company announced Monday.


    Fox River Grove, police union OK new contract

    Fox River Grove and the police union recently agreed on a new police contract with pay raises that the police chief hopes slows officer turnover. The village board voted unanimously to approve the deal last week. The deal is retroactive to May 2011 and expires in April 2014. “We got to an agreement and I think it works well for both parties,” Village Administrator Karl Warwick said.


    District 25 cuts popular world language program

    Arlington Heights Elementary District 25 will no longer offer Mandarin Chinese to fourth and fifth grade students, starting next year. Although the move will save the district nearly $200,000 annually, it is contrary to a parent survey showing that more and more families want second language instruction in lower grade levels.


    West Aurora Dist. 129 middle schools to dismiss early Tuesday

    West Aurora District 129 announced Monday its middle schools were dismissing students early on Tuesday because of the predicted snowstorm.

    Charles Amrich, left, and Debbie Herrmann

    Will new paperwork allow Amrich to run in Island Lake?

    Charles Amrich is trying to get back onto the ballot as a mayoral candidate in Island Lake, filing paperwork to fill a vacancy in his slate that was created by his disqualification as a candidate. That vacancy was created by an electoral board’s Feb. 4 decision to disqualify Amrich as a candidate because of a $174 debt to the village that wasn’t paid before he signed critical campaign paperwork.


    Dist. 25 teacher named Art Educator of the Year

    Arlington Heights Elementary District 25 teacher Tricia Fuglestad has been named the 2013 Western Region Elementary Art Educator of the Year by the National Art Education Association. Fuglestad teaches at Dryden Elementary School in Arlington Heights.


    Arlington Heights candidate forum March 16

    Candidates for Arlington Heights village president, village trustee and library board trustee will participate in a candidate forum presented by the League of Women Voters of Arlington Heights-Mount Prospect-Buffalo Grove on Saturday, March 16. The candidate forum begins at 9:30 a.m. at Arlington Heights Village Hall, 33 S. Arlington Heights Road.


    Tri-Cities police reports
    Sean P. Scheffler, 30, of St. Charles was charged with harassment through electronic communications, according to a police report. The complaint was lodged at 10:56 p.m. Saturday, stemming from an incident in the 400 block of North Washington Street.


    Bears’ Fencik returns to Barrington High

    Chicago Bears Super Bowl champion and Barrington High School alum Gary Fencik will share the lessons he’s learned on and off the field on Monday, March 11 at a program and reception sponsored by the Barrington 220 Educational Foundation. The event takes place at 7 p.m. at Barrington High School, 616 W. Main St.

    Lake County Board member Pat Carey, left, and state Sen. Melinda Bush, right, begin a 5-minute sprint through the grocery aisles Monday at the Piggly Wiggly store in Antioch for the 15th Annual Race for Hunger. The annual event sponsored by the Lake County Farm Bureau benefits local food pantries.

    Antioch shopping race benefits Lake County food pantries

    There was some clean up needed but no injuries as state Sen. Melinda Bush and Lake County Board member Pat Carey dueled in a five-minute shopping spree to help local food banks during the the 15th annual Race for Hunger sponsored by the Lake County Farm Bureau. Together, the pair netted more than $2,600 in goods for the Northern Illinois Food Bank and the Avon Township pantry, although Bush...

    A car is removed from the scene after striking a building that houses DePaul University’s Naperville campus. No one was seriously injured.

    Vehicle hits building at DePaul’s Naperville campus

    A male driver was transported to an area hospital for treatment of minor injuries Monday morning after the car he was driving struck a building that is owned by BP but houses DePaul University’s Naperville campus.

    Daniel R. Swayka

    Burr Ridge man accused of possessing weapons cache

    Police recovered a bulletproof vest and more than 900 rounds of ammunition from the home of a Burr Ridge man accused of possessing a stolen firearm, authorities said Monday. Daniel Swayka, 20, of the 16W200 block of 94th Street, faces charges of possession of stolen property, possession of firearms and ammunition without a Firearm Owner’s Identification card, and possession of marijuana, police...

    Michael Ochs

    Candidate departs Ward 9 race in Aurora

    Michael Ochs, one of five candidates for Aurora’s Ninth Ward seat, has jumped out of the race at the eleventh hour. His decision comes less than a day before the primary election to narrow the field to two candidates for the April 9 election. Ochs’ departure leaves four candidates in the running — Edward Bugg, Matt Harrington, Marge Linnane and Bob Shelton.

    Bill DiFulvio

    South Elgin Trustee DiFulvio kicked off ballot

    A judge has ruled that a longtime South Elgin trustee will be removed from the spring ballot for failing to number the pages within his nominating petitions. Kane County Judge John Dalton made the decision Monday to disqualify Bill DiFulvio from inclusion on the ballot. DiFulvio was seeking his fourth term in office.

    Kayla Nicosia as Maria, plays guitar and sings with the Von Trapps during a rehearsal for Spotlight Youth Theater’s “The Sound of Music,” which will be performed this weekend in Batavia. Clockwise, from Nicosia, are Jack Wartman (Kurt), Sydney Trotter (Liesl), Nathan Dille (Frederick), Delaney Wittlich (Marta), Sydney Olson (Brigitta), Ronni Fiedler (Gretl), Shannon McCoy (Louisa).

    Spotlight Youth stages ‘The Sound of Music’ in Batavia

    The Batavia Fine Arts Centre will be filled with "The Sound of Music" this weekend, March 1-3, when Spotlight Youth Theater of Kane County brings the classic story of the Von Trapp family to the stage.

    Vehicles navigate along Interstate 27 during blizzard conditions in Lubbock, Texas, Monday. State troopers are unable to respond to calls for assistance and National Guard units are mobilizing as a winter storm blankets the central Plains with a foot of snow in some places. Roads were closed Monday throughout West Texas and the Panhandle.

    2nd blizzard in less than week slams Plains region

    Blizzard conditions again descended on the midsection of the country Monday, forcing the closure of highways in the Texas and Oklahoma Panhandles and putting already snow-covered parts of Kansas on high alert as the day progresses.

    This handout image obtained by The Associated Press shows question 9: “What is Person 1’s race”, on the first page of the 2010 Census form, with options for White: Black, African Am., or Negro.

    U.S. stopping use of term ‘Negro’ for census surveys

    After more than a century, the Census Bureau is dropping its use of the word "Negro" to describe black Americans in surveys. Instead of the term that came into use during the Jim Crow era of racial segregation, census forms will use the more modern labels "black" or "African-American".

    Glen Crest Middle School sixth-graders Molly Friedman, Sohini Surapaneni, Alex Bergendorf and Rachel Jordan join teacher Jennifer Rodriguez in demonstrating some of the experiments they did to purify water.

    Sixth-grade students learn the value of clean, safe water

    Sixth-grade students in a new Science, Technology, Engineering and Math class at Glen Crest Middle School not only learned how water purfication systems worked this year, they gained a new appreciation for how precious safe, clean drinking water is. The students are finishing up their unit on water by collecting doantions for The Water Project, which drills wells in Third World communities...

    In this Jan. 24, 2013, photo Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta hands the memorandum he has just signed, ending the 1994 ban on women serving in combat, to Army Lt. Col. Tamatha Patterson of Huntingdon, Tenn., during a press briefing at the Pentagon .

    Listen up, ladies! Uncle Sam might want you, too

    Tennnnnn-hut, ladies! The next time Uncle Sam comes calling, he's probably going to want you, too. The Obama administration's recent decision to lift the ban on women in combat has opened the door for a change in the law that currently compels only men between age 18 and 25 to register for a military draft, according to legal experts and military historians. Never before has the country drafted...


    Free exhibit focuses on bicycling

    Pedal your way through the Elk Grove Historical Museum's newest interactive exhibit "Folks with Spokes." Admission to the exhibit is free. "Folks with Spokes" opens on Friday, March 8, and runs through Aug. 31.

    Tigers and lions are considered apex predators on land, though humans are the most effective predators of all, according to Jay Petersen, curator of carnivores and primates at Brookfield Zoo.

    Top predators play important role in nature’s food chain

    A sixth-grader in Maureen Petricca's class at Nerge Elementary School in Roselle submitted this: "Determine the world's greatest predator in current existence." Hope Babowice says apex predators like the great white shark and lions and tigers help keep the the food chain in check.

    Incumbent Kristina Kovarik, left, and Trustee Kirk Morris, right, are running to be Gurnee mayor in the April 9 election.

    Gurnee mayoral candidates Kovarik, Morris have ideas on how they would improve village

    Gurnee's two mayoral candidates have different ideas on bettering the community if they win the April 9 election. Mayor Kristina Kovarik says there is a need for more village-sponsored events, while her challenger, Trustee Kirk Morris, wants to see a beautification program.Both candidates shared their views on the issues in a joint Daily Herald editorial board endorsement interview and on...

    Barrington Unit District 220 officials say they have no intention of replacing the Barrington Transportation Co. as its transportation provider, despite recent criticism of how it handled delays caused by a Feb. 7 winter storm.

    Barrington District 220 sticking with bus company, despite complaints

    The professionalism of a Barrington-based school bus company is being called into question after a preschool-aged boy's whereabouts were unknown to his family for nearly three and a half hours during a winter storm earlier this month. Barrington Unit District 220 officials, however, say they have no plans to terminate the company's contract.


    Des Plaines firefighters respond to two fires simultaneously

    Electrical malfunctions are being blame for a pair of blazes Des Plaines firefighters battled nearly simultaneously Saturday evening. No injuries were reported in either fire, but residents of a multi-family home were displaced.

    Will commuters benefit from merging the Regional Transit Authority with the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning? State Sen. Terry Link of Waukegan is pushing for the merger.

    Talk of RTA, CMAP merger draws mixed reviews

    Would a proposal to merge the RTA and the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning save money and improve planning and transit in the process? Sen. Terry Link, who is sponsoring legislation forcing the merger thinks so. But those who run the agencies politely skirt the issue.

    Kaneland Superintendent Jeff Schuler

    Schuler could be in for raise starting in July

    The Kaneland school board is expected to vote tonight to increase the base pay of Superintendent Jeff Schuler.

    Jim O'Hara, owner of Focus Martial Arts and Fitness in Lake in the Hills, with Nathan Hayes of Cary.

    Foundation Fighting Blindness walk aims to find cure for retinal disease

    Nathan Hayes was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa (RP) in November 2010 at the age of 10. It is a degenerative retinal disease that leads to blindness. The Foundation Fighting Blindness, the world's leading private source for retinal disease research funding, provides his family with hope and support that a cure can be found. Helping to fund the needed research is the eighth annual Chicagoland...


    Fox River and Countryside could vote on land purchase tonight

    There could be a third fire station coming in the area served by the Fox River and Countryside Fire/Rescue District. Trustees are expected to vote on a land purchase Monday night.


    Cutting-edge Calif. tunnels poised to open

    Two slick new milelong tunnels are undergoing final safety tests this month, poised to divert motorists away from an ocean cliff-hanging roadway dubbed Devil's Slide south of San Francisco to a smooth, Alpine-like passageway unlike any in the U.S. today. The $439 million project, paid with federal emergency funds, features massive exhaust fans, carbon monoxide sensors and a pair of 1,000-foot...

    Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem attends a meeting with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov in Moscow on Monday.

    Syria says it’s ready for talks with armed rebels

    Syria is ready to hold talks with the armed opposition trying to topple President Bashar Assad, the country's foreign minister said Monday, in the government's most advanced offer yet to try to resolve the 2-year-old civil war through negotiations. Walid al-Moallem did not say whether rebel fighters would first have to lay down their arms before negotiations could begin, a key sticking point in...


    NYC man arrested in meat cleaver attack on wife

    A husband hacked his wife with a meat cleaver on a bustling Chinatown street Sunday morning before firefighters tackled him, police said Monday. Ming Guang Huang, 28, was hospitalized for a psychiatric evaluation after being arrested on attempted murder and other charges, police said. The attack unfolded before witnesses and surveillance cameras on Chinatown's main thoroughfare, authorities said.


    Officials: Slovenian nuke plant shuts down

    Officials say Slovenia's only nuclear power plant shut down automatically after a drop in pressure in a steam generator and there was no danger of a leak Authorities said the shutdown happened shortly before noon Monday and that "all safety systems functioned properly."

    A man casts his vote for the Italian Senate in Piacenza, Italy, Sunday. Italy votes in a watershed parliamentary election Sunday and Monday that could shape the future of one of Europe’s biggest economies.

    Exit polls in Italy show center-left leading national vote

    Exit polls show Pier Luigi Bersani's center left coalition leading a national vote that is testing Italians' resolve to stay the course of painful economic reform. Sky Italia says Bersani's coalition has taken 35.5 percent of the vote for the lower house of parliament, ahead of the center-right coalition under former Premier Silvio Berlusconi with 29 percent.


    U-46 board to vote tonight on revised calendar

    Elgin Area School District U-46 board members will vote tonight on a revised calendar for the 2013-2014 academic year. The new version calls for an Aug. 19 start, reflecting concerns from parents of the initially proposed Aug. 14 date.


    New camera equipment for Lombard police, fire

    The Lombard village board has approved the purchase of new camera equipment for the police and fire departments. The police department will receive $48,315 worth of camera system improvements for video and audio surveillance of its booking area and three investigations interview rooms, as well as video-only surveillance for the interior and exterior of the police station at 235 E. Wilson Ave.


    Dawn Patrol: Carol Stream woman killed; no suburban Oscar winners

    Carol Stream woman dies in crash; Oscars have no winners from suburbs; first woman on Illinois Supreme Court dies; Geneva grad dies after tragic circumstances; "Argo" takes top Oscar; Blackhawks keep streak alive

    Dylan Haugh looks to his grandfather, Mike Haugh, as they play during the Illinois Old Time Fiddlers Association monthly jam in Shelbyville.

    Fiddlers learn art the traditional way

    There was no fiddler on the roof, but there were fiddlers just about everywhere else Feb. 17 as the Illinois Old Time Fiddlers Association gathered for their monthly meeting in Shelbyville. The Lions Club building in Forest Park pulsed with the foot-tapping rhythms of country and square dance tunes that stretched back to the days of the pioneer farmers who first broke the prairie. The theme of...


    Suspect arrested after Green Bay standoff

    GREEN BAY, Wis. — A 21-year-old man is in jail after a standoff with Green Bay police.Officers were called to a home on a report of a domestic disturbance around 11:15 p.m. Sunday. Police say the man in the house refused to cooperate and was armed with several swords and knives. They say he also threatened to commit “suicide by cop” if officers tried to arrest him.


    Plea hearing for Wisconsin woman accused in 1957 murder

    A 76-year-old woman accused of killing her baby daughter in 1957 is expected to appear in Sheboygan County Circuit Court for a plea hearing. Ruby Klokow was scheduled to go on trial this week in the death of 6-month-old Jeaneen. But prosecutors say a resolution to the case has been reached which will be made public in court Monday.


    Indiana man dies in Ohio balcony fall

    The victim of a fatal weekend hotel balcony fall in Cincinnati has been identified as a 24-year-old Indiana man. The Hamilton County coroner said Alexander Crouch died of massive trauma after the fall from the 16th floor of the Garfield Suites Hotel early Sunday.


    Israel, U.S. successfully test anti-missile system

    Israel and the U.S. on Monday carried out a successful test of the next-generation Arrow 3 missile defense system, for the first time sending an interceptor into outer space, where it could destroy missiles fired from Iran.

    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, walks with British Foreign Secretary William Hague as they leave Downing Street in London, Monday. Kerry has kicked off his first official overseas trip by meeting with British leaders in London on the first leg of a hectic nine-day dash through Europe and the Middle East.

    Kerry opens first official overseas trip in London

    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry kicked off his first official overseas trip by meeting Monday with British leaders in London, the first leg of a hectic nine-country dash through Europe and the Middle East.

    Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius is driven to a relatives’ home in Pretoria, South Africa, Friday.

    South Africa: Pistorius reports to authorities

    Oscar Pistorius reported to South African authorities on Monday under bail terms in the murder case against him, said a spokeswoman for the Olympic athlete. The double-amputee runner visited correctional officers in the capital, Pretoria, said Lunice Johnston. "Oscar did present himself to the necessary authorities this morning," Johnston told The Associated Press.

    Instructor Ted Smith uses a slide to demonstrate different types of damage to marijuana plants during class at THC University in the Tivoli in Denver. Chemical fertilizers can be finely crafted to target a specific deficiency in the plants, whether they’re lacking phosphorus, evident by telltale “purple vein,”or potassium, a likely culprit when leaves show brown spots between the veins.

    Legal pot in Colo., Wash. poses growing dilemma

    It may be called weed, but marijuana is legendarily hard to grow. Now that the drug has been made legal in Washington and Colorado, growers face a dilemma. State-sanctioned gardening coaches can help folks cultivate tomatoes or zucchini, but both states have instructed them not to show people the best way to grow marijuana. The situation is similar in more than a dozen additional states that...


    Crews looks for 4 in waters south of San Francisco

    Several Coast Guard vessels and aircraft are searching the ocean south of San Francisco for four people, including two children younger than 8, who reported their sailboat was sinking. The group was approximately 65 miles off Pillar Point Harbor in Half Moon Bay around 4:20 p.m. Sunday when they made a distress call, Lt. Heather Lampert said.

    This photo from April 21, 2010, shows an oil slick as the Deepwater Horizon oil rig burns in the Gulf of Mexico, more than 50 miles southeast of Venice on Louisiana’s tip. Nearly three years after the deadly rig explosion triggered the nation’s worst offshore oil spill, a federal judge in New Orleans is set to preside over a high-stakes trial for the raft of litigation spawned by the disaster.

    Trial set to open for Gulf oil spill litigation

    Nearly three years after a deadly rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico triggered the nation's worst offshore oil spill, a federal judge in New Orleans is set to preside over a high-stakes trial for the raft of litigation spawned by the disaster. Barring an 11th-hour settlement, U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier will hear several hours of opening statements Monday by lawyers for the companies...


    Two Aurora council seats contested in Tuesday primary

    Polling places across two sections of Aurora will be open Tuesday as primary elections in Ward 9 and Ward 4 look to narrow each race to two candidates. The Ward 9 race on Aurora’s far southeast side features five candidates seeking two spots on the Aoril ballot. The Ward 4 race pits seven candidates for two spots.


    Democratic voters go to the polls Tuesday in Aurora Township

    The polls will be open in Aurora Township Tuesday, as voters in the primary election select which Democrats they want to run for township positions.Four people are seeking the nomination for township supervisor.

    Fourth-grade students Alice Gramlich, Lilia Carman, Zach Bertrand and Ajani Rowland work on an electromagnet project with teacher Dee Dee Aldrich at Churchill Elementary School in Glen Ellyn. District 41 officials are proposing to combine grade levels as part of an effort to better focus on science, math and literacy instruction.

    Glen Ellyn schools rethinking grade levels

    Ask any 8-year-old who attends school in Glen Ellyn what grade he or she is in and the answer you might soon receive could be surprising. No longer will the student say second or third grade, but “Level Two.” The new terminology is just one thing students, parents and teachers in Glen Ellyn Elementary District 41 will have to get used to if the school board approves implementation of the Think...


    Bulls forward Carlos Boozer shoots over Thunder forward Serge Ibaka during Sunday night’s 30-point loss at Oklahoma City.

    Poor shooting a season-long trend for Bulls

    The numbers are not adding up for the Bulls these days – 10 of the last 12 games on the road, 10 out of 12 against opponents with a winning record, and a 5-7 record to show for it. The Bulls' 29.1 percent shooting in Sunday's 30-point loss to Oklahoma City was a low point in a season-long trend.

    Rolling Meadows' players celebrate with the supersectional trophy after beating Evanston in Class 4A Niles West supersectional play Monday night in Skokie.

    Rolling Meadows girls head to state for first time

    Rolling Meadows got its biggest girls basketball win in school history on Monday night in Skokie. The Mustangs became the school's first girls basketball team to advance to the state finals with a convincing 54-31 triumph over Evanston at the Niles West supersectional in Evanston. “This was our No. 1 goal. It feels good to be able to check it off," said junior guard Sami Kay, one of five underclassmen who start for the Mustangs.


    Monday’s girls basketball scoreboard
    Here are the results from Monday's varsity girls basketball results as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Monday’s boys basketball scoreboard
    Here are the results from Monday's varsity boys basketball results as reported to the Daily Herald.


    Barrington tops Wheeling

    Barrington earned a Wednesday date against regional host Warren with a 53-44 victory over Wheeling on Monday in Class 4A Waukegan sectional play. Robby Vollman led the way with 17 points for Barrington (18-12), which trailed at the half 30-24 before holding Wheeling to 4 points in the third quarter.


    St. Charles North disposes of South Elgin

    The St. Charles North boys basketball team made sure Tuesday’s Class 4A regional play-in game against host South Elgin was suspense free. The North Stars used full-court pressure from the start to frustrate and confuse young South Elgin and cruised to a 73-52 victory. No. 3 St. Charles North’s pressure defense translated to a 20-4 opening run, and No. 6 South Elgin (5-23) was unable to draw within 10 points of the lead thereafter.


    ACC, Kaneland advance at IMSA regional

    The packed bleachers at IMSA for a Class 3A regional quarterfinal could mean only one thing. Marmion was playing Aurora Central Catholic in boys basketball.


    Antioch opens with 3A playoff win

    It had been a while since Antioch’s boys basketball team tasted victory. The Sequoits finally did Monday night, defeating No. 18 CICS/Northtown 65-48 in the teams’ state tournament opener at North Chicago.


    Batavia earns its shot at No. 1 seed Oswego

    While it is win or go home time in the Illinois High School Association’s basketball tournament, Batavia managed to win and stay home for at least another day Monday night. Jake Pollack and Micah Coffey scored 17 and 16 points, respectively, and each connected on three 3-pointers to help lift the 17th-seeded Bulldogs (12-14) to a 61-52 victory over No. 16 Plainfield East (11-15) in the opening round of the Class 4A regional tournament at Batavia.

    Huntley celebrates its Class 4A Dundee-Crown supersectional win Monday over Wheaton Warrenville South in Carpentersville.

    Huntley shocks WW South

    No one who follows girls basketball in Illinois would dispute Huntley’s potential to accomplish big things in the future. But the question for the Red Raiders going into Monday night’s Class 4A Dundee-Crown supersectional was how a team with only one senior starter would handle the big challenge it faced in Wheaton Warrenville South. They answered it by never letting go of the lead they took early in the second quarter. By exhibiting patience and discipline for the right shots and by showing the grit and determination to handle every flurry thrown at them by Wheaton South junior standout Meghan Waldron. And the Red Raiders (26-6) celebrated the biggest step in their historic ride with a huge contingent of fans who made the trip to nearby Carpentersville and witnessed a 47-43 victory which ended a 15-game winning streak for the Tigers (29-4).


    Chapman, Geneva have their way with WW South

    Wheaton Warrenville South never did find a way to neutralize Geneva post Connor Chapman Monday night in Wheaton. The Geneva senior single-handedly outscored the Tigers in the opening half in the first quarter alone, and the forward paved the way for the Vikings’ 43-33 victory at the Tigers’ Class 4A boys basketball regional quarterfinal.


    Lyons Twp. zones out Willowbrook

    Willowbrook’s boys basketball team knew a zone defense would be looming in the playoffs. Unfortunately for the Warriors, they still couldn’t conquer it. Lyons Twp. knocked out Willowbrook in the Class 4A York regional quarterfinals with a 67-56 victory Monday in Elmhurst. The 15th-seeded Lions (13-14) play No. 2 York (20-7) in Tuesday’s semifinals.

    Malayna Johnson of Montini collides with Zemoria Jernigan of Phillips during Class 3A super sectional girls basketball on Monday at Hinsdale Central.

    Like a broken record: Montini wins again

    All season long, Montini has refused to get caught looking ahead to the prospect of making history. There’s no avoiding it now. After their latest dominating playoff win, a 72-41 dispatching of Chicago Phillips at Monday’s Class 3A Hinsdale Central supersectional, the No. 1-ranked Broncos are heading back to Redbird Arena where history awaits them. Montini (34-1) advances to play Vernon Hills — which the Broncos beat 56-38 in last year’s championship game — in a Friday state semifinal in Normal. Two more wins and Montini will become the first girls basketball program to win four straight state championships.


    Jacobs outlasts Prairie Ridge

    Now that the season has reached a single-elimination format, this is where Jim Hinkle’s coaching career at Jacobs reminds you of a game of Russian Roulette. But in Monday night’s 43-25 Class 4A regional quarterfinal win over No. 6 Prairie Ridge in Algonquin, the 71-year-old Hinkle outlasted the Wolves to coach another game. And he also received another chance, for possibly the last time, to refute an ugly victory claim for the first time.


    Elgin runs past Streamwood

    Twice the Elgin boys basketball team built double-digit, first-half leads against Streamwood only to be reeled back within 4 or 5 points, but there was no catching the Maroons in the third quarter of Tuesday’s Class 4A South Elgin regional play-in game. Elgin opened the third quarter on a 19-1 run to turn a 10-point halftime lead into an easy 73-52 victory, thereby ending the coaching career of retiring Streamwood coach Tim Jones, a former star player for Elgin High. It was the third victory for Elgin (14-13) against Streamwood (11-19) this season.

    The Blackhawks’ Marian Hossa begins to celebrate after scoring the winning goal past Oilers goalie Nikolai Khabibulin during the overtime period Monday night at the United Center.

    Hossa goal turns 1 point into 2 for Hawks

    Marian Hossa slid a Patrick Sharp rebound around Oilers goalie Nikolai Khabibulin and the Blackhawks kept their record-breaking streak alive with a 3-2 overtime win Monday at United Center.


    Repplinger, Lake Zurich KO Libertyville

    The defensive specialist ended up being pretty special on offense, too. Lake Zurich senior guard John Repplinger, known for his lock-down defense, got busy on the offensive end Monday night in the first round of regional action against visiting Libertyville. Repplinger scored 10 of his team-high 19 points in the fourth quarter as the No. 12 Bears pulled out a 70-65 win and advanced to tonight’s regional semifinal against fifth-seeded Mundelein.


    Webb makes sure Vernon Hills’ run continues downstate

    With her trusty point-guard hands, Lauren Webb cradled not a souvenir string of basketball net, nor the supersectional plaque, nor the game ball, which she so richly deserved. Rather, the Vernon Hills junior squeezed the Charmin. Well, a roll of some brand of toilet paper, anyway. She wasn’t about to cry, however. Nor was the player, poised and peppy, about to devilishly head off to TP someone’s house. “My nose is always running, since freshman year,” Webb said of why she stashes a roll of toilet paper on the bench. “It’s easier than a tissue box.” Vernon Hills’ season-long roll continued Monday night with a 39-31 win over pesky-younger-smaller Burlington Central in the Class 3A Hoffman Estates supersectional, earning the 30-2 Cougars a berth downstate for the second year in a row.

    Vernon Hills players Meri Bennett-Swanson, left, and Lauren Webb celebrate their 39-31 Class 3A supersectional win over Burlington Central at Hoffman Estates High School on Monday night. The Cougars advance to the finals of the state tournament this weekend at Redbird Arena in Bloomington.

    Redbird again for Vernon Hills

    The Burlington Central girls basketball team had the momentum and appeared poised to pull off the upset. Until, that is, Vernon Hills junior Lauren Webb snatched it away in the blink of an eye. Webb drove the lane and scored just nine seconds after Burlington Central had tied the game with 3:49 left to play, a basket that provided Vernon Hills with the springboard it needed to claim a 39-31 win over the Rockets in the Class 3A Hoffman Estates supersectional Monday night.


    Grayslake Central savors one-sided triumph

    Grayslake Central star Danny Reed recalled a similar blowout very early in the season but couldn’t recall the name of the team that the Rams buried. Another such pummeling took place on Monday night in Vernon Hills. No, it hasn’t been a major success story for the Rams this season, but for at least one night, Grayslake Central (5-22) ruled the roost. Every Rams player dented the score board in an impressive 86-44 romp over Chicago Sullivan.


    Leyden routs West Chicago in second half

    With his right hand wrapped gingerly in ice, Leyden boys basketball player Anthony Gonzalez insisted he’d be ready to play on Wednesday. Now that the season is on the line, he doesn’t want to miss a minute. Leyden opened the playoffs strong in the Class 4A York regional quarterfinals with a 53-28 victory over West Chicago in Elmhurst. The 10th-seeded Eagles (17-10) advance to Wednesday’s semifinals to face No. 7 Bartlett (19-9).

    Rolling Meadows’ players celebrate with the super-sectional trophy.

    Images: Rolling Meadows vs. Evanston, girls basketball
    Rolling Meadows won 54-31 over Evanston in the Class 4A Niles West supersectional on Monday, Feb. 25 in Skokie.

    Montini are the supersectional champions over Phillips in Class 3A.

    Images: Montini vs. Phillips, girls basketball
    Montini won 72-41 over Phillips Monday night in the Class 3A Hinsdale Central girls basketball supersectional.


    Burlington Central downs Genoa-Kingston

    Ryan Ritchie craved two things Monday evening. The Burlington Central senior wanted his first postseason victory and another shot at Hampshire. Ritchie had to get one to earn the other. Ritchie scored 14 points to help the Rockets to a 51-30 victory over Genoa-Kingston in the play-in game of the Class 3A Burlington Central boys basketball regional.


    Rogers scores 29 to lead Crystal Lake South

    There were 7 losses by 5 points or less. Senior Eric Schiller missed 3 games due to an ankle injury. It has been a season of adversity and setbacks for the Crystal Lake South boys basketball team. But the Gators have left the bad times in the past. Led by a career high 29-point effort by junior forward Austin Rogers, the fifth-seeded Gators claimed their sixth consecutive win with a 58-47 victory over No. 4 seed Cary-Grove in first round action of the Class 4A Jacobs regional Monday night.

    Huntley’s Sam Andrews laughs with the game ball after defeating Wheaton Warrenville South.

    Images: Wheaton Warrenville South vs. Huntley, girls basketball
    Wheaton Warrenville South lost 47-43 to Huntley as they battled for a trip to Normal next weekend in the Class 4A girls basketball supersectional Monday night in Carpentersville.

    Blackhawks right winger Marian Hossa scores the winning goal Monday against Edmonton Oilers goalie Nikolai Khabibulin in overtime at United Center.

    Hossa extends Hawks’ streak to 19 games

    Marian Hossa scored 1:44 into overtime and the Blackhawks beat the Edmonton Oilers 3-2 on Monday night at United Center to stretch their NHL-record opening points streak to 19 games.Patrick Sharp set up the winning goal with a quick turn along the boards and a drive to the goal that led to two stops by Nikolai Khabibulin. Hossa picked up the second rebound and was again stuffed by Khabibulin before he poked it in for his ninth goal of the season.Patrick Kane and Viktor Stalberg also scored for Chicago (16-0-3), which has won six straight and nine of 10. Ray Emery made 17 saves to remain unbeaten in eight starts this season.Nail Yakupov and Jeff Petry had the goals for Edmonton, which carried a 2-1 lead into the third period but couldn’t hold on for its fourth consecutive victory over the Blackhawks. Khabibulin had 31 stops in the opener of the Oilers’ franchise-record, nine-game road trip.Edmonton grabbed the lead in the second, taking advantage when Brandon Saad was sent off for high sticking. Yakupov, the No. 1 overall pick in last year’s draft, one-timed a pass from Sam Gagner into the right side of the net at 14:17 for his fourth power-play goal and sixth overall.Chicago looked listless for much of the second, but rebounded quickly in the third. Michal Rozsival was behind the net when he sent a pass in front to Stalberg, who poked the puck into the mouth of goal as Khabibulin went to his knees to try for the stop.The call on the ice was no goal, but replays showed the puck crossed the line before Khabibulin could make the play and Stalberg was awarded his fifth goal of the season after a short review.The pace picked up after the tying goal, and each team had a couple of solid chances to move in front. Yakupov shot off the post on one power-play opportunity, and Khabibulin stopped Hossa on a short-handed chance.Edmonton moved in front in the first period after Duncan Keith lost his footing and coughed up the puck deep in Chicago’s end. Lennart Petrell picked it up and skated in all alone on Emery, who stopped his backhand attempt. The rebound went out to Petry, who sent it over the prone goalie at 4:28.Just over a minute later, Kane skated to the middle of the ice and beat Khabibulin with a slick backhander for his 10th goal of the season. It was his first goal since Feb. 10 at Nashville, ending a six-game drought.

    Vernon Hills players react after their 39-31 Class 3A supersectional victory over Burlington Central at Hoffman Estates High School on Monday night.

    Images: Burlington Central vs. Vernon Hills, girls supersectional basketball
    The Burlington Central High School girls basketball team lost 39-31 to the Vernon Hills High School girls Monday, Feburary 25th, in the Hoffman Estates supersectional game.


    Everyone helps out as Hersey advances

    One of Hersey’s strengths is a deep bench, and coach Steve Messer isn’t afraid to use any of his guys, even in a pressure-packed atmosphere like the state playoffs. All 10 Huskies who played scored as Messer rode the hot hands in each half in No. 20 Hersey’s 66-59 victory over No. 13 Buffalo Grove in Class 4A regional quarterfinal play at Lake Zurich. “We had different guys all helping out,” Messer said. “That makes everything better when everyone contributes, and that was really the case today. Even a kid like Nick Heeren, who was in for a minute and a half, gets a big bucket. That’s huge.” Hersey (8-18), who advances to play in Tuesday’s regional semifinal against No. 4 Lake Forest, led from start to finish in avenging two Mid-Suburban East losses to BG (15-12).


    Grayslake North turns back Grant

    Grant was hoping the third time would be the charm in the Prospect Class 4A first-round regional Monday night. The Bulldogs had suffered two double-figure losses to Grayslake North during the season. Grant certainly came close on the third try, but the Knights’ Danny Mateling and company held on for a 47-46 win and now plays top-seeded Stevenson at 7:30 pm tonight.

    Dayan Viciedo will continue to be the White Sox’ everyday left fielder.

    White Sox like Viciedo’s ‘ceiling’

    Dayan Viciedo wasn't traded during the off-season, and he is not going to be a platoon player with the White Sox this year. General manager Rick Hahn and hitting coach Jeff Manto both agree Viciedo has a bright future as the Sox' regular left fielder.


    Bulls tipoff
    Cleveland Cavaliers at the United Center, 7 p.m.TV: Comcast SportsNetRadio: ESPN 1000-AMUpdate: The Cavaliers seem to have turned a corner in the last month. They were 9-31 on Jan. 15 and have gone 9-7 since. Second-year guard Kyrie Irving is averaging 23.3 points and 5.6 assists, while rookie SG Dion Waiters is contributing 14.4 ppg. With C Anderson Varejao out for the season, former Memphis PF Mareese Speights (12.5 ppg) has been a nice addition. The Bulls have won 12 straight in the series.Next: Philadelphia 76ers at the United Center, 7 p.m. Thursday— Mike McGraw


    Decker brings love for the game overseas

    Although she wore a brace for a growth behind her knee as a senior, former Maine West forward Lara Decker still logged quite a few miles during her high school basketball career. Now, she is miles away and still involved with her passion of the sport. Last August, Decker moved to Budapest, Hungary, to work at the International Christian School of Budapest.


    Veteran teammates keep Hawks’ Shaw humble

    Don’t look for Andrew Shaw to get a big head in his first full season with the Blackhawks as his minutes and responsibilities increase. “I can’t get ahead of myself,” said Shaw, who scored the only goal in Sunday’s 1-0 win over Columbus. “I’ve got to stay level-headed and make sure I’m grounded, just compete and work hard. That’s my game.


    Dziedzic commits to Illinois

    Libertyville senior Matsen Dziedzic will take his shot at Illinois after having committed to a future with the Illini. Dziedzic finished second in the Class 3A shot put last year with a toss of 59-01.50. He was also the runner-up in sectional competition.

    Like it or not, Miami’s LeBron James has more to do with the Bulls’ near future than anything the Bulls decide to do.

    Bulls’ harsh reality centers on LeBron

    We suspected that it was only a matter of time before LeBron James took over the Eastern Conference and made it a nightmare for every contender, just as Michael Jordan did in the 1990s. What’s left for Derrick Rose and the Bulls to figure out is how to change that if James never leaves the East.

    Chicago Cubs' Dioner Navarro, right, is congratulated by Anthony Rizzo (44) and Alfonso Soriano after hitting a three-run home run during an exhibition game against the San Francisco Giants on Sunday.

    The Soriano rumor mill is turning again

    Cubs left fielder Alfonso Soriano enters the seventh season of his eight-year, $136 million contract. Once again, talk has surfaced that Soriano could be traded. Despite the contract, Soriano has value, both to other teams and to the Cubs.

    The Chicago Fire is looking for a breakout season from goalkeeper Sean Johnson.

    MLS East preview: D.C. United looks strong again

    With the Major League Soccer season kicking off this weekend, it’s time to look at how the Eastern Conference shapes up, in order of predicted finish. Check out where Orrin Schwarz ranks the Chicago Fire, and which club he has on top.

    Offensive tackle Lane Johnson of Oklahoma started out his career at a quarterback, but his size (6-foot-6, 302 pounds) earned him a spot protecting the quarterback.

    Could Bears land OU’s Johnson in NFL Draft?

    It may take a bit of luck for Oklahoma offensive tackle Lane Johnson to fall to the Bears at No. 20 in the first round of the NFL draft, but the former college quarterback is exactly the kind of player they should be looking for to protect quarterback Jay Cutler's blind side.

    Danica Patrick’s eighth-place finish in the Daytona 500 helped Fox post a 30 percent increase in its television ratings for the race, according to preliminary figures. It was the highest finish ever by a female driver at the Daytona 500.

    Huge jump in Daytona 500 television ratings

    DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. With Danica Patrick starting from the pole, the Daytona 500's preliminary television ratings were much higher than last year's.Sunday afternoon's race earned a 10.0 overnight rating and 22 share on Fox, the network said Monday. That's up 30 percent from 2012, when rain pushed the event to a Monday night. It was the highest overnight rating since 2006.


    2,000 attend Urso memorial soccer match

    More than 2,000 fans witnessed Sunday's exhibition soccer match in Greensboro, N.C., between the Columbus Crew and the University of North Carolina, and all came to honor the late Kirk Urso, the former Lombard native who died last season of a congenital heart defect.


    Learn wins PBA50 Midwest Regional crown

    Bob Learn Jr. outscored Wauconda's Curt Aemisegger, 202-189, Sunday to win the Professional Bowlers Association PBA50 Midwest Regional tournament at Beverly Lanes in Arlington Heights.


    Mike North video: Stone and Harrelson make up

    Mike North reminds the White Sox announcers they should try to get along better for their time in the booth. They need to do a better job for Sox fans- announcing baseball is a great gig- enjoy it!


    The Discover Arlington campaign on a banner in downtown Arlington Heights.

    Arlington Hts. conducting consumer habits survey

    Arlington Hts. wants to get a better handle on where and why consumers spend money in the village, through a shopping survey being conducted with Public Research Group. “It’s always good to have data to support where the marketing efforts are going,” Charles Witherington-Perkins, director of planning and community development.

    Piggly Wiggly on Grayslake’s west side closed in late 2012. Grayslake trustees recently approved a redevelopment incentive of up to $155,000 to the owner of the plaza at Atkinson Road and Center Street, where another grocery store is expected to open in Piggly Wiggly’s space in April.

    Grayslake approves incentive for shopping center’s facade upgrades

    Grayslake village trustees have approved a redevelopment incentive of up to $155,000 to the owner of the plaza where the now-shuttered Piggly Wiggly supermarket was an anchor. The exterior improvements will benefit about nine businesses in the mall at Atkinson Road and Center Street, officials said.


    Elburn Station vote set for March 18

    The Elburn village board will vote March 18 on Shodeen Inc.'s proposed Elburn Station Development.

    Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, accompanied by White House press secretary Jay Carney, briefs reporters on the sequester Monday at the White House in Washington.

    Obama warns of risks over budget cut uncertainty

    President Barack Obama on Monday said looming automatic spending cuts are already affecting the economy, while a top administration official warned that the nation’s borders would be less secure if billions of dollars are yanked from the budget Friday.

    KFC launched a campaign Monday to rebuild its battered brand in China, promising tighter quality control after a scandal over misuse of drugs by its poultry suppliers.

    KFC launches China campaign to rebuild brand

    KFC launched a campaign Monday to rebuild its battered brand in China, promising tighter quality control after a scandal over misuse of drugs by its poultry suppliers.The company, a unit of Yum Brands Inc., promised to test meat for banned drugs, strengthen oversight of farmers and encourage them to improve their technology. It said more than 1,000 small producers used by its 25 poultry suppliers have been eliminated from its network.

    Barnes & Noble Chairman Leonard Riggio has told the book seller he is going to try to buy the company’s retail business.

    Barnes & Noble chair wants to buy retail business

    The last remaining national bookstore chain is being taken off the shelf and dusted off for sale.Founder Barnes & Noble’s founder Leonard Riggio disclosed in a regulatory filing Monday that he wants to acquire the company’s stores and website, but not the business that makes the Nook e-reader or the company’s college bookstores. No price was disclosed.

    Workers handle meat at the Doly-Com abattoir, one of the two units checked by Romanian authorities in the horse meat scandal, in the village of Roma, northern Romania,

    Ikea withdraws meatballs in more than 20 countries

    Swedish furniture giant Ikea became entangled in Europe’s widening meat scandal Monday, forced to withdraw meatballs from stores across Europe amid suspicions that they contained horse meat. Stores in the U.S. and Canada were not affected, Ikea said.

    U.S. stocks fell, giving benchmark indexes their biggest losses since November, as partial election results spurred concern about prospects for a stable government in Italy and a worsening of Europe’s debt crisis.

    Stocks drop as Italy heads for political disarray

    Stocks had their worst drop in more than three months as the prospect of political paralysis in Italy raised the specter of Europe’s debt crisis flaring up again. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 216.40 points, or 1.6 percent, to 13,784.17, its biggest drop since Nov. 7.

    In this 2010 photo, oil can be seen in the Gulf of Mexico, more than 50 miles southeast of Venice on Louisiana’s tip, as a large plume of smoke rises from fires on BP’s Deepwater Horizon offshore oil rig.

    High-stakes trial begins for 2010 Gulf oil spill

    BP bears most of the blame for the disastrous 2010 spill in the Gulf of Mexico because it cut corners and put profits ahead of safety, a U.S. Justice Department attorney charged Monday at the opening of a high-stakes trial that could result in the oil company and its partners being forced to pay billions more in damages.

    The New York Times said its International Herald Tribune newspaper will be renamed the International New York Times, eliminating a global brand that traces its roots to 1887.

    N.Y. Times to drop International Herald Tribune name

    The New York Times Co. said its International Herald Tribune newspaper will be renamed the International New York Times, eliminating a global brand that traces its roots to 1887. The new name will debut later this year, the New York-based publisher said Monday in a statement.


    Tulsa World sold to Warren Buffett’s Berkshire

    Billionaire Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway said Monday that it is buying the Tulsa World, bringing its newspaper unit to 28 small- or medium-sized dailies. The privately held Tulsa newspaper has a daily circulation of 95,000. The sale was reported Monday by the Tulsa World and Berkshire's Omaha World-Herald, whose executives oversee the company's newspapers.


    Village board will take up the matter in special meeting tonight

    The Elburn village board considers an annexation and development agreement for Shodeen Inc.'s proposed Elburn Station Development.


    Own a business? Got an idea? Why not blog?

    Of course you have an opinion. And ideas. So why not blog? A regular blog most likely will boost your business' presence on search pages and therefore help you connect with whatever audience you target.

    A Michigan deposit printed on a beverage in Detroit.

    Smugglers still cashing in on Michigan can refund

    Michigan lawmakers want to crack down on can and bottle smugglers they say are scamming Michigan for undeserved recycling refunds, corrupting a generous 10-cent per container payback policy once infamously portrayed in a "Seinfeld" episode and which beverage officials now claim costs the state millions of dollars annually."Seinfeld" characters Kramer and Newman failed miserably in their comedic attempt to cash in on the refund, when they loaded a mail truck full of cans and bottles in New York and attempted to drive them to Michigan. But lawmakers say it's a serious problem, especially in border counties.


    Lowe’s 4Q net income tops expectations
    Home improvement retailer Lowe's Cos. says cleanup efforts after Superstorm Sandy helped its fourth-quarter net income surpass expectations. But its net income fell 11 percent from last year's quarter, which included an extra week of revenue. Lowe's net income totaled $288 million, or 26 cents per share, for the three months ended Feb. 1. That's down from $322 million, or 26 cents per share, a year ago. Analysts expected 23 cents per share.

    People walk by an electronic stock board of a securities firm in Tokyo, Monday

    Markets buoyant despite UK downgrade, Italian poll

    Markets roared ahead Monday as investors brushed aside a downgrade of Britain's credit rating and uncertainty over Italian election results. Investor sentiment, which has been largely positive in 2013, has rebounded since last Thursday, when it was hurt by concerns over the possible end of super-easy U.S. monetary policy.


    AT&T snags OnStar wireless contract from Verizon

    AT&T Inc. is scoring a win over rival Verizon Wireless as it takes over the contract to supply wireless connections to cars with General Motors' OnStar service.Verizon Wireless and its predecessor companies have supplied the network for OnStar since the service launched in the 1990s, but AT&T will take over with the 2015 model year, AT&T and GM said Monday.

    The historic cobblestone streets and 19th-century mercantile buildings near the water’s edge in lower Manhattan are eerily deserted, a neighborhood silenced by Superstorm Sandy.

    NYC seaport a ‘ghost town’ months after Sandy

    The historic cobblestone streets and 19th-century mercantile buildings near the water's edge in lower Manhattan are eerily deserted, a neighborhood silenced by Superstorm Sandy.Just blocks from the tall-masted ships that rise above South Street Seaport, the windows of narrow brick apartment buildings are still crisscrossed with masking tape left by their owners before the storm. Store interiors are stripped down to plywood and wiring. Restaurants are chained shut, frozen in time.

Life & Entertainment

    Elevations, Airoom's sister company, completes exterior facade work. This home was modified from its original look, below.

    Airoom helps owners invest in their homes

    Building room additions, both large and small, has been Airoom's primary business for 55 years. But today, the longtime Chicago-area contractor has expanded considerably to "keep up with the world" and provide the services today's homeowners want, said Tom Graham, president.


    Exercise, stretching prevent recurrence of low back pain

    Until about a century ago, most human beings were physically active most of the day. Our muscles were built to support a life of frequent physical activity, but that's a life few of us have today, so our muscles tend to get weak and stiff. Weak muscles cause or worsen many cases of low back pain. Stretching and strengthening both your back and abdominal muscles can help prevent a recurrence of the problem.

    This 2012 publicity photo provided by Guttman Associates shows Janet Jackson with Wissam Al Mana, in a portrait taken by photographer, Marco Glaviano. A representative for Jackson confirmed Monday that the musician and Wissam Al Mana wed last year.

    Janet Jackson says she got married last year

    Janet Jackson knows how to keep a secret: The singer has been married since last year. A representative for Jackson confirmed Monday that the musician and Wissam Al Mana wed last year.

    Cardinal Keith O’Brien, left, resigned Monday due to allegations of misconduct. He said he wouldn’t take part in the conclave to elect the next pope after being accused of improper conduct with priests.

    U.K. Cardinal skips conclave amid accusations

    Britain’s highest-ranking Catholic leader resigned and removed himself Monday from the upcoming papal conclave, saying he did not want allegations that he engaged in improper conduct with priests to be a distraction during the solemn process of choosing the next leader of the church’s 1.2 billion-member flock.

    Hot and Sour Soup is an Asian version of chicken noodle soup, capable of curing winter colds and sniffles.

    Soupalooza: Hot and sour soup cures what ails you

    Hot and Sour Soup is the Asian version of chicken noodle soup — the antidote to all that ails you. While that may seem like just another folk tale, there is evidence that hot and sour soup is really good for you. The lightly cooked vegetables offer fiber, vitamins and minerals, but that's just the start.

    Hot and Sour Soup is an Asian version of chicken noodle soup, capable of curing winter colds and sniffles.

    Ying’s Hot and Sour Soup
    Ying's Hot and Sour Soup

    Actress Quvenzhane Wallis arrives at the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre on Sunday. The Onion is apologizing for calling the 9-year-old star of “Beasts of the Southern Wild” a vulgar and offensive name on Twitter, an attack that led to a firestorm online.

    The Onion apologizes for ‘crude’ actress tweet

    The Onion is apologizing for calling the 9-year-old star of "Beasts of the Southern Wild" a vulgar and offensive name on Twitter, an attack that led to a firestorm online. The satirical newspaper on Sunday referred to Quvenzhane Wallis with an expletive intended to denigrate women. The Onion was lambasted overnight and asked for forgiveness Monday. "It was crude and offensive — not to mention inconsistent with The Onion's commitment to parody and satire, however biting," The Onion CEO Steve Hannah wrote on Facebook. "No person should be subjected to such a senseless, humorless comment masquerading as satire."

    Benedict Cumberbatch plays tradition-bound Christopher and Rebecca Hall is his unfaithful wife, Sylvia, in the five-part miniseries “Parade’s End,” debuting Tuesday, Feb. 26, on HBO.

    HBO’s ‘Parade’s End’ keeps British TV invasion going

    British playwright Tom Stoppard is the master behind "Parade's End," a five-part HBO miniseries (airing at 8 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, Feb. 26-28) that was lauded by U.K. critics as "the thinking man's Downton Abbey'" after its BBC airing. Adapted by Stoppard from a series of novels by British writer Ford Madox Ford, "Parade's End" features rising stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Rebecca Hall in the juiciest of roles. Like PBS' "Downton Abbey," it's set in the early 20th century among aristocrats and encompasses World War I's shattering effect on the social order.

    Hard work, determination and good trainers are motivating the 2013 Fittest Losers.

    Trainers give contestants the push they need

    Who's responsible for a successful week on the scale, a never-give-up workout or a focused mental attitude? Depends on who you ask. The 2013 Fittest Loser contestants say none of it would be possible without the discipline and motivation instilled in them by their trainers. What do the trainers think? This week we asked them to weigh in.


    Trainer's approach is just what she needs

    Whenever I'd hear "personal trainer," I'd immediately think of Louis Gossett Jr. in "An Officer and a Gentleman" and picture being screamed at while I do push-ups or other equally awful calisthenics in the rain.Working with a personal trainer was definitely both the coolest and most terrifying prospect of the whole Fittest Loser journey.

    Melynda Findlay and Joshua Steckler

    Our Fittest Loser making progress

    It's Week 3 of the Fittest Loser. Push Fitness owner and Melynda Findlay's trainer, Joshua Steckler, weighs in on her progress.

    Sheila Kastner, left, Erin Chapa, Kelly Sisco, Eric Lawhead and Josie Kish of Addison’s Club Fit Five break with tradition on Fat Tuesday by throwing a Non-Fat Tuesday team workout.

    Community teams trying to step it up

    How many steps does it take to win the Fittest Loser Community Challenge? The competing park district teams are going to find out. During this past week, the Community Challenge has been all about steps; with teams focused on increasing the number of steps they walk each day.

    Jason Bateman and Melissa McCarthy star in “Identity Thief.”

    McCarthy’s ‘Identity Thief’ tops box office again

    Hollywood's latest films performed tepidly at the box-office on Oscar weekend, with Melissa McCarthy's "Identity Thief" returning to the top spot in its third week of release. The Universal comedy earned $14.1 million on the weekend, according to studio estimates Sunday, enough to regain the box-office title after losing it last week to 20th Century Fox's "A Good Day to Die Hard," the Bruce Willis action sequel. With a cumulative total of $93.7 million, "Identity Thief" is the biggest hit so far in 2013.

    Ang Lee poses with his award for best directing for “Life of Pi” during the Oscars on Sunday.

    Ang Lee’s Oscar award thrills Taiwanese

    A second Academy Award for best director has thrust Taiwan native Ang Lee into the top ranks of world filmmakers and made him a national hero on this diplomatically isolated island. Lee's victory at Hollywood's annual Oscar extravaganza on Sunday for fantasy epic "Life of Pi" followed his 2005 directorial win for "Brokeback Mountain." News of Lee's triumph electrified Taiwanese, many of whom watched a live TV broadcast of the event.

    Grant Heslov, left, Ben Affleck and George Clooney pose with their award for best picture for “Argo” during the Oscars on Sunday in Los Angeles.

    Iran scoffs at Oscar-winning ‘Argo’

    Iran's state TV dismissed the Oscar-winning film "Argo" on Monday as an "advertisement for the CIA" and some Iranians called the award a political statement by America for its unflattering portrayal of the aftermath of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. And while "Argo" has not appeared in any Iranian cinema, there has been no shortage of buzz from those who saw the movie through bootleg DVD networks.

    Reflective nail heads and white trim create a tailored look that means the dining room can carry a deep blue on walls and chairs.

    TV designer encourages strong choices in color, decor

    Is there any decorating skill more exciting or scarier than using color? Yes, we all say we want the personalization and drama that color brings, but the challenges of making it work are enough to send DIY homeowners whimpering to designers. Thom Filicia, known for his television shows, especially “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy,” gives solid decorating tips, including how to use color, in his new book, “American Beauty,”

    The fight for the failed Equal Rights Amendment is part of the history in the PBS documentary “Makers: Women Who Make America.”

    PBS’ ‘Makers’ explores the women’s movement

    For girls born after women were appointed to the Supreme Court, "Makers: Women Who Make America" is a history lesson. The three-hour special that airs at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 26, on PBS is not just for younger women. It is for everyone — those who relished victories whenever women won higher office, experienced fury when colleagues made sexual advances or were frustrated when schools allocated money only for boys sports.


    Sperm count favors athletes over couch potatoes, study finds

    Young men who work out frequently have as much as 73 percent more sperm than those who don't, and the more television one watches, the lower the count goes, according to a study by Harvard University researchers. College-aged men who exercised more than 14 hours a week had the highest sperm counts. Watching TV had the opposite, with sperm counts almost halved for those viewing 20 or more hours a week, according to the study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

    Co-founders Kajal Desai (in the red shirt) and Priya Pandya (in the gray shirt) lead a class on one of their new DVDs.

    Doonya gets into rhythm of Indian dancing

    Before launching into an hour of kicks, hand flicks and hip bumps, Kajal Desai turned to the dozen students assembled in a fitness studio last month and offered two pieces of advice: "Smile lots and have fun." That's what she's been doing since 2005, when she met Priya Pandya when they were both desperately looking for Indian dance. When they found each other, they realized they could teach dance classes and start their own Bollywood-inspired performance troupe, which they named Doonya.


    Status report for the Fittest Loser contestants
    Fittest Loser vital statistics - Week 3

    Francis Wisniewski of Chicago converted a warehouse into a Las Vegas-themed playhouse to hold his muscle car collection.

    Car collection shines in Vegas-themed showroom

    When auto collectors look for inspiration to design a cool, custom storage environment for their four-wheeled treasures, they usually think glowing neon lights and the old-time nostalgia of yesteryear diners. Yet when Francis Wisniewski of Chicago considered how he wanted to showcase his fleet of unique vehicles, he looked to a dazzling location known the world over for being one of a kind: Las Vegas.

    There have always been frail people, but only in recent years has the term “frailty” become a medical diagnosis.

    Doctors take different approach to treating frailty

    There have always been frail people, but only in recent years has the term "frailty" become a medical diagnosis, defined by specific symptoms and increasingly focused on by those who deal with the medical issues of the elderly. Clinicians now are looking at ways to prevent or delay frailty, sometimes even reverse it.

    Despite their bad reputation, onions are very good for you in many ways.

    Your Health: The onion — stinky but super
    Learn about the power of the onion and why it's good for you. Also, baby weight checks are important for many reasons.


    Perils of flying post-surgery

    When surgeries are planned, doctors routinely tell patients not to travel for a month or so after the procedure. Mostly it's an effort to stave off deep vein thrombosis, or blood clots. Usually, blood clots aren't dangerous in and of themselves. But a clot that forms in the deep veins of the leg can be deadly if it breaks off, travels to the lungs and creates a blockage known as a pulmonary embolism.


    Blocking brain protein may ease depression

    Blocking a protein in the brain that prevents neural stem cells from maturing may lead to a potential new way to treat depression, one of the most common mental disorders in the U.S. After the gene that makes the protein, called sFRP3, was deleted in mice their brains behaved as though they were on antidepressants, researchers from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore found.



    Editorial: Evaluating campaign rants about empty storefronts

    A Daily Herald editorial warns that while vacant storefronts are problems, they're also a natural result of the Great Recession and voters should look deeper when considering the issue in the upcoming municipal races.


    Saving the Republican Party

    In the summer of 1999, George W. Bush chose the first major policy speech of his presidential campaign to pick a fight with Grover Norquist. Bush flatly rejected the “destructive” view “that if government would only get out of our way, all our problems would be solved” — a vision the Texas governor dismissed as having “no higher goal, no nobler purpose, than leave us alone.” Norquist had proposed to define conservatism as the “leave us alone” coalition — a movement united by a desire to get government off our backs. Bush countered that “the American government is not the enemy of the American people.” Ed Crane, then president of the libertarian Cato Institute, said the speech sounded like it was written by someone “moonlighting for Hillary Rodham Clinton.” I can formally deny that charge. But the Bush campaign was purposely attempting to alter the image of the Republican Party. And the party — rendered more open to change by eight years in the presidential wilderness — gave Bush the leeway to make necessary ideological adjustments. It is the nature of resilient institutions to take stock of new realities and adjust accordingly. In a new cover essay for Commentary magazine (http://bit.ly/YvAcrM), Peter Wehner and I detail the examples of Bill Clinton and Tony Blair. Clinton broke a long Democratic presidential losing streak by emphasizing middle-class values, advocating the end of “welfare as we know it,” and standing up to extreme elements within his coalition (thereby creating the “Sister Souljah moment”). In Britain, Blair went after the “moral chaos” that led to youth crime, abandoned his party’s official commitment to public ownership of the means of production, and launched New Labor.The Republican Party is now in need of similar transformation. Out of the last six presidential elections, four have gone to the Democratic nominee, at an average yield of 327 electoral votes to 211 for the Republican. During the preceding two decades, from 1968 to 1988, Republicans won five out of six elections, averaging 417 electoral votes to Democrats’ 113. This stunning reversal of electoral fortunes has taken place for a variety of reasons: changing demographics; the end of a GOP foreign policy advantage during the Cold War; a serious gap in candidate quality; the declining relevance of economic policies that seem better suited to the 1980s; an occasionally deserved reputation for being judgmental and censorious. A full Republican appreciation of these disturbing fundamentals was delayed by the 2010 midterms, in which an unreconstructed anti-government message seemed to be riding a wave. Just two years later came that wave’s withdrawing roar. The Republican nominee, Mitt Romney, lost by 5 million votes to a beatable incumbent presiding over an anemic economy. The explanation is not purely technical or personality oriented. At the national level, Republicans have a winning message for a nation that no longer exists. In retrospect, the 2012 Republican primary process was entirely disconnected from the actual needs of the party. One candidate pledged to build a 20-foot high electrical fence at the border crowned with the sign, in English and Spanish, “It will kill you — Warning.” Another promised, as president, to speak out against the damage done to American society by contraception. Another warned that vaccinations may cause “mental retardation.” In the course of 20 debates and in tens of millions of dollars of ads, issues such as upward mobility, education, poverty, safer communities and the environment were rarely mentioned.


    What’s ahead in Congress this year

    Earlier this year, it seemed there might be some hope for Capitol Hill when Congress dealt easily with raising the debt ceiling. But don’t let that single episode fool you. As President Obama and House Republicans circle each other over the forthcoming budget cuts known as the “sequester,” it’s a reminder that Congress and the White House have a complicated legislative agenda ahead — and that none of the items on it will come easily.We’ll get to the specifics in a moment, but two things need to be said up front. The first is that despite President Obama’s exhortations in his State of the Union speech, major policy changes will be difficult to make. The Democrats may have increased their margin in the Senate, but the Republicans still control the House. The ideological polarization and apparently incompatible views that marked dealings between the two bodies show no sign of abating. Significant policy initiatives are not impossible, but it’s safest to have subdued expectations.Second, although rank-and-file members seem more willing than in the recent past to part with their caucuses on high-profile votes, power will continue to rest with the leadership. Over the year ahead, the dynamic to watch will involve the caucus leaders in both houses — ordinary members may have some impact on the margins, but they won’t be the center of the action.The big issue, of course, will continue to be the budget and fiscal affairs. The major questions are: Can we get our fiscal house in order? Can we revive economic growth and make the investments we need in human and physical capital? And can we figure out a reasonable way to pay for the government we require — one that doesn’t need the 73,000 pages of rules and regulations that burden our current tax code?However Congress and the White House proceed, it’s unlikely there will be any “grand bargain.” Instead, they are likely to make piecemeal progress on the core issues: increasing tax revenues and cutting spending on entitlements. Confrontations over these matters will make it harder to tackle other economic issues that need addressing, such as how to address the regulation of the biggest banks and how to finance the infrastructure that our economic growth desperately needs.Congress will also turn to health care. As long as President Obama is in office, his signature health plan will not be repealed, but there will almost certainly be fights over its implementation and funding. The big issue — how to control health care costs — will remain a centerpiece of the debate, but it is unclear how it will get addressed.On the other hand, there is unambiguous movement on immigration reform. While Democrats have coalesced around a comprehensive approach to the issue — which would include ways of easing the stay of highly skilled workers, a guest-worker program, and a path to citizenship for the 11 million illegal immigrants in the country — Republicans have generally preferred tackling specific issues separately.The two sides can find common ground, especially on high-skilled workers. Possible citizenship, on the other hand, will be much knottier to resolve. So while the gridlock may be easing, comprehensive reform of our broken immigration system is not assured.You can also look for piece-by-piece initiatives on gun control. While the White House and some members of Congress are looking for wide-ranging legislation banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, others are focused on specific proposals that can gain bipartisan support. Some members with widely different views, for instance, are coalescing around an effort to expand requirements for background checks on gun sales.


    No, we don’t all sin like Mark Sanford

    Columnist Froma Harrop: Most of us do bad things. We betray friends, make hurtful remarks, lie. Often an apology will suffice in restoring trust and respect. But some very successful people engage in patterns of nutty or nasty behavior that say more about them than the misdeeds themselves. Consider the case of disgraced former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford.


    The lesser of two evils on immigration

    Columnist Charles Krauthammer: In the end, the only remaining vessel for enforcement is Marco Rubio's proposal. It is deeply flawed and highly imperfect. But given that the Obama alternative effectively signs away America's right to decide who enters the country, the choice between the two proposals on the table today is straightforward.


    Overspending starts with salt trucks
    A Mount Prospect letter to the editor: Profligate spending is not confined to Washington and isn't going to stop anytime soon, as long as it's with someone else's money.


    Marriage equality good for communities
    A Clarendon Hills letter to the editor: It's good for business, it's good for our communities, it's good for children to be raised by committed parents who are recognized in the eyes of the law, and it removes the linguistic ambiguity that currently challenges couples in civil unions.


    Citizens must make jury duty a priority
    A Marion letter to the editor: Sadly, too many people disregard jury duty and look for ways to get out of it. Illinois Lawsuit Abuse Watch has long been advocating reforms to increase jury participation, but the Illinois General Assembly continues to ignore the need for meaningful jury reforms.


    Circuit Breaker changes weigh heavily
    A Crete letter to the editor: The governor talks about how "nobody in Illinois should work 40 hours a week and live in poverty," but someone needs to inform him that for seniors and people with disabilities every penny counts when you're living on a fixed income in this down economy.


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