Local News

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Shed fire spreads to Orland Park home

By Bob Bong / November 8, 2022 / Comments Off on Shed fire spreads to Orland Park home

A fire believed to have started in a backyard shed quickly spread to the adjacent home Monday night in Orland Park. Orland Fire Protection District firefighters responded to a 911 call at 10:41 p.m. Monday in the 9800 block of Avenida Del Este. Firefighters said when they arrived there was heavy smoke and fire coming…

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Orland Park business celebrates anniversary by donating masks

By Jeff Vorva / November 6, 2022 / Comments Off on Orland Park business celebrates anniversary by donating masks

By Jeff Vorva Orland Park’s EzCloud Solutions turned 10 years old this year and its owner, Victor Kress, is giving out presents rather than receiving them. Kress donated more than $100,000 worth of TR1 Respirators/masks to members of the Orland Fire Protection District, Orland Park and Orland Hills police departments, and senior volunteers in Orland…

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Hastings presents $610,000 state grant to Orland Fire to enhance 911 system

By Bob Bong / November 4, 2022 / Comments Off on Hastings presents $610,000 state grant to Orland Fire to enhance 911 system

State Senator Michael Hastings joined officials of the Orland Fire Protection District on October 20 to announce the award of a $610,000 State Grant to enhance the district’s regional 911 emergency system and “save more lives.” Fire Chief Michael Schofield and several Battalion Chiefs joined District Trustee Craig Schmidt who said the grant will help speed up 911 emergency communications among…

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Community turns out to salute Orland firefighters at open house

By Bob Bong / September 30, 2022 / Comments Off on Community turns out to salute Orland firefighters at open house

Nearly 500 people attended an open house hosted by the Orland Fire Protection District on Saturday that featured an up-close look at the techniques firefighters use to respond to emergencies. Demonstrations by firefighters included a rope rescue showing how individuals can be rescued from apartment buildings; the dive team demonstrated how they can rescue individuals from…

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St. Francis of Assisi in Orland Park to Host Blue Mass on Sunday

By Bob Bong / September 23, 2022 / Comments Off on St. Francis of Assisi in Orland Park to Host Blue Mass on Sunday

Hundreds of police officers, firefighters, emergency services personnel and their families are expected to attend the annual Blue Mass at noon on Sunday, Sept. 25, at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Orland Park. Hosted by St. Francis of Assisi Parish and the Knights of Columbus Council 16369, the Blue Mass is a Catholic tradition…

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First responders live it up at Orland’s National Night Out

By Bob Bong / August 5, 2022 /

By Isabella Schreck With a helicopter overhead, police cars and fire trucks to climb into, free giveaways, food, and music, Orland Park’s annual National Night Out looked like it had something for all ages. Residents agreed. “The free hots dogs, the helicopter flying and seeing all of the different vendors makes it a fun event…

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Area communities plan National Night Out events

By Bob Bong / July 28, 2022 / Comments Off on Area communities plan National Night Out events

By Bob Bong Several area communities are making plans to celebrate the National Night Out Against Crime next Tuesday. Thousands of communities in the United States and around the world celebrate as people are asked to turn on outside lights and join first responders to promote awareness, safety and neighborhood unity. National Night Out was started in 1984 by the National Association of Town…

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Orland Fire District dedicates training center in honor of former Chief Robert Buhs

By Bob Bong / July 19, 2022 / Comments Off on Orland Fire District dedicates training center in honor of former Chief Robert Buhs

The Orland Fire Protection District, ranked as having one of the highest “save rates” in the nation, dedicated the Robert M. Buhs Education & Leadership Development Center on July 15 in honor of a former fire chief who officials said was the district’s chief architect. Orland Fire Chief Michael Schofield said the Fire District Board of Trustees, including President…

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New Palos Heights fire chief passionate about firefighting, new community

By Bob Bong / July 13, 2022 / Comments Off on New Palos Heights fire chief passionate about firefighting, new community

By Isabella Schreck Even after more than 30 years in fire protection, Michael Daly said he was still excited to come to work. “I’m very lucky to have a career that I enjoy,” said Daly, who became fire chief for the Palos Heights Fire Protection District in March. “I still like to work. I enjoy…

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2 police officers, firefighter treated after Orland Park fire

By Bob Bong / May 8, 2022 / Comments Off on 2 police officers, firefighter treated after Orland Park fire

From staff reports Two Orland Park police officers and one Orland Fire Protection District firefighter were injured last week night while responding to a house fire in the 8200 block of Legend Lane in Orland Park. The police officers were treated for smoke inhalation and the firefighter suffered minor burns on April 26, Orland Fire…

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Palos School District 128 has launched a Therapy Dog visitation program for students at Navajo Elementary and Independence Jr. High in Palos Heights. (Supplied photos)

District 128 schools are going to the dogs and the kids love it

By Kelly White Pet therapy has also been shown to improve energy levels, self-esteem, social skills, verbal communication and mood, as well as decrease depression. Palos Heights School District 128 made the decision to bring pet therapy into the classroom to help both its students and staff reap these benefits while enjoying the company of…

Michael Benjamin has a laugh after being named Orland Park’s Officer of the Year during a ceremony on Jan. 16. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Orland Park cops honored and defended

By Jeff Vorva The Village of Orland Park hosted its police awards ceremony last week and, as usual, Mayor Keith Pekau expressed his gratitude for the job the police force does. He also was irked by some comments he has seen online with negative comments on a post. On Jan. 7, Orland police responded to…

Sean Casten

Casten scolds sheriff on new gun control law

Says he can’t pick which laws to enforce By Tim Hadac U.S. Rep. Sean Casten (D-6th) and several other Democratic members of the state’s Congressional delegation recently sent a letter to DuPage County Sheriff James Mendrick, expressing concern over his Jan. 13 statement that he will not enforce the Protect Illinois Communities Act (H.B. 5471).…

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2023 Illinois tax filing season now open

From staff reports The Illinois Department of Revenue began accepting 2022 state individual income tax returns on Monday, the same date that the Internal Revenue Service began accepting federal individual income tax returns. “Taxpayers are encouraged to file electronically as early as possible in the tax season and choose direct deposit in order to ensure…

Palos Park Police Officer Ross Chibe, shown at a village council meeting in 2021, and the Palos Park force are staying on top of a sextortion scam that has become prevalent. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Palos Park tries to stay ahead of the curve on sextortion scams

By Jeff Vorva The Palos Park Police Department is trying to stay ahead of a disturbing trend that has not been talked about publicly very much. When it comes to the topic of sextortion scams, the Palos Park police are monitoring things very closely and Detective Ross Chibe was called on to provide some wisdom…

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Former hospital employee charged in Palos Heights identity theft

From staff reports A Hazel Crest man was charged last week with aggravated identity theft stemming from an incident that happened on December 27. Palos Heights police took a report on December 27 from a patient at Northwestern Palos Hospital who reported their wallet was missing and then observed two unauthorized charges on her debit…

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Boys Bowling | Stagg charges to first state finals appearance

By Randy Whalen Correspondent For Stagg, it’s a first. For Sandburg, it’s a return trip. Both teams survived the Plainfield North Sectional at Town & Country Lanes in Joliet to advance to the state tournament. The finals will be Friday, Jan. 27, and Saturday, Jan. 28, at St. Claire Bowl in Fairview Heights. The Chargers,…

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Boys Bowling | Reavis rolls to sectional title, sixth straight trip to state

By Jason Maholy Sports Editor A strong all-around team effort and a runner-up performance by Ethan Deluna powered Reavis to the championship of the IC Catholic Sectional and a trip to the state tournament. The Rams totaled 6338 to top second-place Glenbrook North by 100 pins on Jan. 21 at Bowlero in Glendale Heights. Lyons…

McKendree sophomore tight end Jordan Sprycha, and Oak Lawn alum, finished third on the Bearcats in receiving touchdowns with five, and tied for sixth in both receptions (22) and receiving yards (193) for the 2022 season. Photo courtesy of McKendree Athletics

College Notebook: Ex-Spartan Sprycha balling with Bearcats

By Mike Walsh Correspondent The fall of 2022 was successful both in the classroom and on the football field for Jordan Sprycha. In the classroom, the Oak Lawn graduate was one of eight McKendree University chosen to the 2022 College Sports Communicators Academic All-District Team. CSC Academic All-District Award nominees must be a starter or…

Brother Rice’s Ahmad Henderson shoots a game-winning 3-pointer against Fenwick his sophomore season. He has also had last-second game winners in his junior and senior seasons. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Hoops Wrap: Ahmad Henderson’s late-game heroics lift Rice over Marist

By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer There is no rule that says Ahmad Henderson needs to sink a game-winning basket at least once a season. If there was such a rule, the Brother Rice senior would follow it to perfection. Henderson worked his closing-seconds magic in one of the area’s hottest rivalries in a 49-48 victory…

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Illinois News

‘Omnibus’ health care bill passed amid criticisms

‘Omnibus’ health care bill passed amid criticisms

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – A law recently signed by Gov. JB Pritzker will extend the deadline for the state to transfer criminal defendants deemed mentally incompetent to stand trial from jail to a mental hospital. That same bill, House Bill 240, also gives nursing homes in Illinois two more years…

Veteran Statehouse reporter Hannah Meisel joins Capitol News Illinois reporting team

Veteran Statehouse reporter Hannah Meisel joins Capitol News Illinois reporting team

By CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS [email protected] Longtime Statehouse reporter Hannah Meisel has joined the Capitol News Illinois team as a full-time state government and politics reporter. She’s had a number of assignments covering the Statehouse and Illinois government since the 2014 legislative session, most recently serving as Statehouse editor for NPR Illinois from 2020 until after…

Replacing Illinois institution as secretary of state, Giannoulias makes modernization push

Replacing Illinois institution as secretary of state, Giannoulias makes modernization push

By NIKA SCHOONOVER Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – For newly sworn-in Secretary of State Alexi Giannoulias, customer service is the central mission as he assumes the state’s second-largest constitutional office, replacing the man who had held it for nearly a quarter century. “Modernization and bringing new technology is going to be at the forefront…

UPDATED: State preparing further defense of assault weapons ban

UPDATED: State preparing further defense of assault weapons ban

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Attorney General Kwame Raoul on Monday filed a petition asking an appellate court to vacate a temporary restraining order that was issued late Friday afternoon blocking enforcement of the state’s recently-passed assault weapons ban. Raoul’s office filed the petition in the 5th District Appellate Court in…

State preparing further defense of assault weapons ban

State preparing further defense of assault weapons ban

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker and legislative leaders said they were disappointed but not surprised by a judge’s decision late Friday putting a temporary and limited halt to enforcement of the state’s recently-passed assault weapons ban. Effingham County Judge Joshua Morrison issued the temporary restraining order late Friday…

Rifle Association files federal suit against assault weapons ban

Rifle Association files federal suit against assault weapons ban

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois State Rifle Association has joined forces with other gun rights advocates in filing a federal lawsuit challenging the state’s new ban on the sale and manufacture of semiautomatic weapons and high-capacity magazines. It’s the latest legal challenge to the law, which went into effect…

DCFS, director face lawsuit filed on behalf of jailed wards

DCFS, director face lawsuit filed on behalf of jailed wards

By BETH HUNDSDORFER Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services on Thursday was named in a federal class-action lawsuit on behalf of children in state care who have been held in juvenile detention centers after a judge ordered their release. Cook County Public Guardian Charles Golbert is a…

At World Economic Forum, Pritzker plays role of Illinois’ ‘best chief marketing officer’

At World Economic Forum, Pritzker plays role of Illinois’ ‘best chief marketing officer’

By NIKA SCHOONOVER Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – After his second-term inauguration amid a frenzied “lame duck” legislative session last week, Gov. JB Pritzker took the global stage this week at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland. The governor and high-ranking members of his staff joined a bipartisan delegation of U.S.…

Watchdog seeks harsher penalties in wake of abuse at Choate

Watchdog seeks harsher penalties in wake of abuse at Choate

By BETH HUNDSDORFER Capitol News Illinois & MOLLY PARKER Lee Enterprises Midwest This article was produced for ProPublica’s Local Reporting Network in partnership with Lee Enterprises, along with Capitol News Illinois. The watchdog for the Illinois Department of Human Services is seeking harsher penalties against health care workers who obstruct abuse and neglect investigations. IDHS…

Rifle Association files federal suit against assault weapons ban

Rifle Association files federal suit against assault weapons ban

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois State Rifle Association has joined forces with other gun rights advocates in filing a federal lawsuit challenging the state’s new ban on the sale and manufacture of semiautomatic weapons and high-capacity magazines. It’s the latest legal challenge to the law, which went into effect…

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