Good News Sunday: Parade a wedding day consolation gift for Arlington Heights couple
This is Good News Sunday, a compilation of some of the more upbeat and inspiring stories published by the Daily Herald during the previous week:
On what was supposed to be her wedding day, Kelley Daehler slept in Saturday morning.
Then she and fiance Danny Jimenez got a surprise consolation gift -- a drive-by parade outside their Arlington Heights home by family and friends.
"It was a lot of fun," Daehler said, noting aunts and uncles, friends and siblings. "We were really surprised. It was really crazy to see all those different people from all different parts of our life there."
The parade was organized by Kelley's mother, Anne Daehler, after the couple had to postpone the wedding twice, first to the Fourth of July weekend, then to next May.
"It's a bummer, but if a postponed wedding is the worst thing that happens to us and our families from this pandemic, we're pretty lucky," Kelley Daehler said.
This was going to be a special year for the Daehler family. Son Thomas also had to postpone his wedding in Arizona. Daughter Betsy Daehler will miss her college commencement at Indiana University, and daughter Noelle will miss her graduation ceremony at Barrington High School.
"This was supposed to be a big spring," Anne Daehler said. "I kind of thought the younger ones, it (the parade) might give them something fun to do."
For the full story, click here.
Socially distant song brings musicians out
A one-song concert, organized by Libertyville High School Director of Bands Adam Gohr, was a success around town, as well as Gohr's own lawn.
Gohr chose "America The Beautiful" to unite the community and honor front-line workers and encourage music students to play together, even distantly.
"It was fun to play music with real people," Gohr joked after the three-minute concert. "Besides my family, I mean."
Through word-of-mouth and social media, musicians of all levels were asked to play at precisely 5 p.m., outside on their porches, driveways and lawns. Gohr arranged the sheet music for several instruments and hoped people also would sing and record the performances.
At least a dozen people sang. Gohr led the show on trumpet, with his wife, Kendra, and daughter Annabelle, 11, on euphonium, and son Owen, 13, playing the cello.
Gohr hopes those who played will submit videos of their performance to bit.ly/LvilleDayofMusic. Vocals will be collected separately and dubbed over a video montage. For the full story, click here.
Former POW celebrates 100th birthday
He doesn't consider himself a hero. He's the only one who doesn't.
Wheaton resident William Howard "Howie" Chittenden, who chugged two gallons of water just to reach the weight limit to join the Marines in 1939, spent nearly four years in POW camps during World War II.
Upon his return home, he graduated in three years from the University of Notre Dame, started a 32-year career at Sears, and raised two sons and a daughter with his wife of 59 years, Patricia.
On Saturday, he turned 100.
Chittenden was among 203 Marines stationed in North China who were forced to surrender to Japanese forces on Dec. 8, 1941, after the attack on Pearl Harbor.
He is the only one still living.
"I don't consider myself a hero. In my opinion, the heroes are all buried in foreign soil, or at sea. The real heroes didn't come home," he said from his home in the Wyndemere senior living center in Wheaton.
"I want to share any honor that's given to me with my buddies. I want to share anything accorded to me with the other 202 comrades that are no longer living," he said.
For the full story, click here.
Vernon Hills senior set to release her first app
Vernon Hills High School senior Justina Chua is looking forward to the release of an app she helped develop as part of her Advanced Topics in Computer Science class.
Chua describes the app, named reflect, as a website blocker for the productive.
Chua and her team developed the idea for reflect when realizing that existing website blockers didn't help them spend less time on social media and other distracting websites.
"We wanted to take a different approach: being more mindful by supporting users in accessing websites when they need to, not blocking them off entirely," she said. For the full story, click here.
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