The dangerous cold temperatures are proving deadly across Illinois.  Christian County authorities say a 64-year-old man was found dead in the snow just a half-block from his Pana home.  Officials say Herbert Palmer left his house early yesterday morning to take a friend to a doctor’s appointment, but his car became stuck in the snow.  Other snow-removal deaths are being reported across Illinois, including four in the Chicago-area on Sunday.


Snow packed roads and snow drifts continued to cause problems on local roads Monday.  With temperatures in the negatives all day and winds gusting to 20+ miles per hour Monday was not a good day to drive anywhere.  Greenville City Police responded to 10 calls to assist motorists and an accident without injuries on I-70 Eastbound around 10:01AM on Monday.  Bond County Deputies responded to 3 calls from stuck vehicles and a non-injury accident on Frey Meadows near Pocahontas Avenue. 

While the temperatures will get near 17 degrees today roads are still likely to be troublesome in spots.  Give yourself extra time to travel on this Tuesday. 



Don’t forget to check on elderly neighbors, friends, and family members during this bitter cold weather. Officials say they’re at a greater risk of getting hypothermia. If you know of any seniors who don’t have adequate heating in their home, try to help them out if possible. Remember, the state has opened 100 warming centers. To find a center near you, check out www.KeepWarm.Illinois.gov or call 1-800-843-6154.


Illinois State Police urge drivers to take precautions before hitting the road in severe winter weather. They suggest checking the forecast before leaving and allowing extra driving time, dressing in layers, carrying a cell phone and car charger, making someone aware of your travel route, and keeping your gas tank at least two-thirds full to prevent the fuel line from freezing.

While on the road, Illinois State Police caution drivers to watch for black ice, be careful not to crowd snow plows, and always wear a safety belt. They also recommend carrying an emergency car care kit that contains jumper cables, flares or reflectors, windshield washer fluid, an ice scraper, traction material, blankets, non-perishable food, and a first aid kit.

In the event of a crash, the Illinois State Police encourage drivers to exchange insurance and driver information, unless medical attention is required, to keep roads clear. A crash report can be filed with the Illinois State Police within ten days.



City crews have been working the past several days to help clear roads and prevent accidents. Greenville Mayor Alan Gaffner told us the Public Works Department has been, "...working since the snow began to fall and they’ve done an excellent job of staying ahead of the high winds and heavy snow fall. They’ve done a great job of keeping the major roadways open, especially for emergency vehicles that need to move throughout the community.”

Gaffner extended thanks to the Public Works Department and the Water & Sewer Department for their work to get roadways open. The mayor also extended thanks to residents who have worked to move vehicles from snow emergency routes and to those who have tried to stay indoors and off the roads while city employees work to improve the road conditions.


If you have any photos from Sunday’s winter storm that you’d like to share with WGEL, please send them to tom@wgel.com.  We’d love to share them in our Daily and our website.  If you send photos, please indicate that you are granting permission for them to be published online.



The Greenville Regional Hospital is taking precautions and increasing restrictions due to the increase in flu-like illnesses in the area and throughout Illinois.

“We have moved from a level 2 to a level 3 high risk area at the hospital,” Clinical Quality and Infection Control Coordinator Katie Rogers told WGEL. “This level restricts visitors under the age of 18 and requires masks to be worn by all employees who do not receive a flu vaccine if they are within 6 feet of a visitor, family member, co-worker, or patient.”

Rogers said the spread of flu-like illnesses is not limited to Illinois and is increasing nationwide this season.


The Bond County Home and Community Education group recently made a donation to the Pregnancy Support Center in Greenville in place of their usual gift to the first baby born in Bond County. Chairperson Esther Henry told us the organization recognized the need for supplies at the Pregnancy Support Center and all went shopping to put together an assortment of items to donate, including diapers, clothes, and lotions. They also gave a monetary donation.

Esther said the Home and Community Education Group is active in volunteering in the community and plans to sponsor the blood bank in February. The group has approximately 140 members in Bond County and is always looking for new members. For more information about the group and how to join, call the Extension Office at 664-3665.

Prairie Farms


The state's concealed carry website is now accepting applications for those who are eligible. The Illinois State Police will be handling the requests, but it still will be a few months before the permits are granted. Authorities have 90 days to approve or deny applications, and an additional 30 days to do a manual background check if fingerprints aren't submitted electronically. Lawmakers approved concealed carry for Illinois residents in July, becoming the last state to do so. 



The students of Sorento School brought in 1,145 food products for their annual food drive, which benefits the Sorento Food Pantry. The class winner was the 5th grade, which brought in 367 food items. Principal Carpenter will award them a prize at a later date when school resumes.


Vincent “Van” B. Thuenemann

Vincent B. "Van" Thuenemann, age 84 of Highland, IL, died Monday, January 06, 2014, at Saint Joseph Hospital in Highland, IL. Arrangements are being handled by Spengel-Boulanger Funeral Home in Highland, Illinois. Visitation will be held from 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM on Thursday, January 09, 2014, at Spengel-Boulanger Funeral Home in Highland, IL, and from 8:00 AM to 9:30 AM, on Friday, January 10, 2014, at Spengel-Boulanger Funeral Home in Highland, IL.   Funeral Mass will be at 10:00 AM on Friday, January 10, 2014, at Saint Paul Catholic Church in Highland, IL, with Rev. Father Paul Kala, Parochial Vicar, St. Cecelia Catholic Church, Glen Carbon, IL, officiating. Interment will be at Saint Joseph Catholic Cemetery in Highland, IL. Memorial contributions may be made to Alzheimer's Foundation.

He was born on Monday, May 13, 1929, in Germantown, IL, the son of Leo and Leona (nee Hagen) Thuenemann.   On Wednesday, May 11, 1955, he married Pauline C. Thuenemann (nee Frohn) who survive .

He was a member of Saint Paul Catholic Church, Highland, IL; Knights of Columbus Council #1580-Highland, IL (Past Grand Knight); Knights of Columbus, Fourth Degree Assembly #0231-Highland, IL; Teamster Local-St. Louis, MO.

Born and reared at Germantown, IL. He worked construction and later drafted into the US Army 01/21/1955 - 01/18/1957. After the service he and his wife moved to Highland and he started working on the docks for Bellm Freight, retiring in 1993. He was very involved with the Knights of Columbus. He sang with the Knight-Time Singers, was in charge of the Chicken and Beer Dances, fish fries for many years and chairman of the golf tournement. He enjoyed golfing, bowling, playing cards, dancing and travelling (several times a year). One trip was to Rome where he and his wife had an audience with the Pope.

Survivors include:
Wife - Pauline C. Thuenemann, Highland, IL
Son - Alan S. (Lori) Thuenemann, Highland, IL
Daughter - Vicky L. (Edgar) Zurliene, Greenwood, MO
Son - Kurt V. (Charlotte) Thuenemann, Prairie Village, KS
Son - Kevin A. (Dawn) Thuenemann, Highland, IL
Grandchild - Joshua A. (Rachel) Thuenemann, Lees Summit, MO
Grandchild - Jared A. (Gabby) Thuenemann, Glen Carbon, IL
Grandchild - Ashley L. (Sanford) Queen, Olathe, KS
Grandchild - Kahla R. Zurliene, Lees Summit, MO
Grandchild - Sophia N. Thuenemann, Prairie Village, KS
Grandchild - Sabrina C. Thuenemann, Prairie Village, KS
Grandchild - Eleanor G. Thuenemann, Prairie Village, KS
Grandchild - Ashley R. Marti, Lebanon, IL
Grandchild - Mariah L. Thuenemann, Highland, IL
Great Grandchild - Olivia G. Thuenemann, Lees Summit, MO
Great Grandchild - Brynn E. Thuenemann, Lees Summit, MO
Great Grandchild - Austin A. Queen, Olathe, KS
Great Grandchild - Harper N. Queen, Olathe, KS
Anticipated Great Grandchild- Brayden E.V. Zurliene, Lees Summit, MO
Sister - Estelle Kniepman, St. Louis, MO
Sister - Janet Koopmann, Belleville, IL
Sister - Carol (Francis "Buck") Robbin, Highland, IL

He was preceded in death by:
Father - Leo Thuenemann
Mother - Leona Thuenemann (nee Hagen)
Sister - Lucille Chisholm
Sister - Rita Hegger
Sister - Virginia Thuenemann (at age 3)

Sarah Ann Limestall

Sarah Ann Limestall, age 31, of Highland, passed away Saturday at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Highland. Funeral services will be Friday at 11:00 a.m. at Meredith Funeral Home in Highland. Burial will be in Highland City Cemetery. Friends may call Thursday from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. and Friday 10 from 8:00 to 11:00 a.m. at the funeral home. Memorials are suggested to the family.

She was born September 13, 1982, to Kevin and Ellen (Nee Saathoff) Limestall, at Memorial Hospital, Belleville, IL.

She was a member of Faith Bible Chapel Midwest, Collinsville, IL. Church was a very big part of her life; she would volunteer to babysit the children in daycare during services. She was a huge Boston Red Sox fan. She liked to camp with her family at Lake of the Ozarks. She loved to visit the state of Maine, especially the coast, where she could see the ocean. She was a very caring and kind hearted person and would talk to people at the hospital that seemed to be scared, to comfort them.

Sarah is survived by her parents, Kevin and Ellen Limestall, Highland, IL; 1 brother, Matthew Limestall, Highland, IL; 1 sister, Joy (Chris) Krouper, Highland, IL; paternal grandmother, Betty Limestall; aunts and uncles, Beverly (Bjorn) Lindgren, Brenda Limestall, Susan Limestall, Owen Saathoff; special aunt, Linda Ferrell; special nieces and nephews, special friends and several cousins.

She was preceded in death by her maternal grandparents, Homer and Cleta Saathoff; paternal grandmother, Wallace Limestall; 1 uncle, Steven Limestall, special uncle, Dennie Ferrell.


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