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posted: 6/1/2013 5:00 AM

The Soapbox

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The Daily Herald Editorial Board

Unsung benefactor:

We'd love to thank the person who donated $95,000 to honor those who died in military service, but he or she wished to remain anonymous. The gift will enable Glen Ellyn leaders to add landscaping and a granite "Heroes of Freedom" display, as well as plaques honoring four Glenbard West High School graduates killed in Vietnam.

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Nerves of steel:

Congratulations to Pranav Sivakuman, a 13-year-old at Barrington Middle School Station Campus, who took second place in the National Spelling Bee this week, having made it into the semifinals each of the last two years. He was finally tripped up by cyanophycean, a type of algae. And we had to double-check that we spelled algae correctly.

Stirring words:

In our series this week looking at how U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk and Rep. Tammy Duckworth are getting around Washington after a stroke (Kirk) and without legs (Duckworth), Duckworth offered this inspiration: "If I can stand on the steps of the Capitol with my artificial legs, and Mark Kirk can climb up the steps of the Capitol, then wherever you are in your recovery, you can do this, too."

Important study:

A proposal by state Rep. Sam Yingling, a Round Lake Beach Democrat, to study suburban heroin use is on its way to Gov. Quinn, after being passed by both legislative chambers. "We have a serious problem that needs to be addressed," Yingling rightly said of the legislation.

Instant fans:

Police seeking oohs and ahs for SUVs and squads with state-of-the-art video gadgets and license plate recognition systems need only to book a show-and-tell for elementary students. This week, third-and fourth-graders Dirksen School in Schaumburg shared the excitement of their police department's new tools. A great way to connect with kids.

New digs:

Vernon Area Public Library officials this week successfully completed the $1.3 million interior renovation of the facility that closed the library for three months. Officials kept the inconvenience to a minimum by moving operations to a nearby building. Everyone made the best of it, and now the library boasts "an entirely new experience."

Can't read what we can't see:

It's that time of year for the reminder that as we drive through unfamiliar areas, speed limit and street signs are of the utmost importance. So, please, it would be nice if municipalities would make sure overgrown branches and shrubbery are cleared from blocking what we need to know. Much appreciated.

Condolences to Rolling Meadows

Roland Meyer made it clear he didn't want a fuss when he died, but Mayor Tom Rooney was right to acknowledge his passing this week. Meyer was Rolling Meadows' mayor from 1967-1979, the city's longest-serving mayor. If you like your city-based garbage pickup, thank Meyer, who started the program the year he was elected.

Likewise to West Chicago:

You name it, Tom Marziani did it. He served on West Chicago's school board, plan commission, chamber of commerce and the DuPage Airport board. He helped design the flight center, in fact. In 2006, he was given a lifetime achievement award by the chamber. Marziani died this week at 89. West Chicago could not have lost a better friend.

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