A driver who struck and killed a highway worker from Bond County while under the influence of Ambien has pleaded guilty to aggravated DUI.  36 year old Michael Jeter, of West Frankfort, was charged after hitting four highway workers on I-64 in May, 2012, killing 38-year-old Dennis Beard, of Bond County, a husband and father of three.  Jeter had worked a four-to-midnight shift at a coal mine and took the Ambien when he got home.  He was on his way to a doctor's appointment in St. Louis the next day when the accident occurred.  Jeter now faces five to ten years in prison.


The Greenville Chamber of Commerce hosted former St. Louis Cardinals power hitter Jack Clark at the annual Cardinals Baseball Luncheon Tuesday. Chamber Executive Director John Goldsmith told WGEL he was pleased with the turnout and said Clark talked about his career, shared many great stories, and directly addressed the Greenville Comets baseball team, who were in attendance.

Chamber Executive Director John Goldsmith (left) shares a laugh with special guest Jack Clark

A long line of Cardinals fans waited for autographs from Clark Tuesday



Slightly warmer temperatures are forecast for today, though cloud cover will gradually increase ahead of the next approaching storm system. Showers and thunderstorms will impact our area from late tonight through Thursday evening with the best chance of rain on Thursday as a cold front moves through the region. Highs today and Thursday will be in the middle 60s to middle 70s.


Greenville College's annual AgapeFest has been cancelled for 2014. The event was scheduled at The Family Arena in St. Charles, MO for this Saturday, April 26.

All customers who purchased tickets through MetroTix will be automatically refunded in the coming days. Customers who purchased tickets from the Family Arena will be contacted by the Family Arena with instructions for their refunds.

Greenville College released the following statement Tuesday morning:

“Each year, AgapeFest staff look forward to spending time with festival attendees, and they regret that the event will not take place as planned on April 26. The festival, alongside many other Christian music festivals, has experienced a steady decline in ticket sales over the past five years, which contributed to the festival's location move from the Bond County Fairgrounds to the Family Arena. AgapeFest remains focused on its mission to further the Kingdom of Christ through music, service, and fellowship, and will continue to look for ways to provide a successful ministry. Festival organizers are currently working on future dates to bring artists to the area in 2015.”


A Bond County Transit bus was in a precarious spot Monday afternoon.

According to Greenville Police, the driver of a Bond County Transit bus had stopped at CC Food Mart Monday around 4:26 p.m. to fill up on fuel.  After paying, the driver told police he returned to the vehicle to find it rolling away from the diesel fuel pump.  The driver attempted to open the door to apply the break, but was unsuccessful.

The bus hit a concrete barrier on the northeast corner of the Shell station lot and rolled over it, breaking through a black metal fence.  It came to rest with the front wheels hanging over a retaining wall.

No one was on board the bus at the time and no one was injured.

Photo courtesy of Tina Bingham



In their meeting Monday, the Bond County Board of Health passed a motion to make the Bond County Health Department a tobacco-free campus effective January 1, saying the change is long overdue. The board discussed implementing the new policy in phases beginning immediately.

The board also passed a motion to implement a Medicare Part D Drug Coverage review process in compliance to changes in the coverage in order to educate hospice clients on which medications would be covered.




With all the work finally done on the new building at Patriot's Park, the Kingsbury Park District board held their meeting Monday night in the new facility. The building is available for rental and holds up to around 80 people. On the agenda was Dawn Meyer, who had performed a spot audit on the account at KPD. According to Meyer everything checked out to fine.

John Goldsmith and Patti Brooks were there, representing the Bond County Independence Day Festival Association, the group that has been raising money to bring back the 4th of July Celebration at Patroit's Park. They reported to the board that fireworks have been ordered and are on schedule for July 4th at Patriots Park and thanked the district for the use of the park. Goldsmith also asked the board for additional money to be used for fireworks. Goldsmith told the board the association is "in this for the long haul, not just this year”.

The board approved the purchase of a new mower not to exceed $6,000 and trade-in to be purchased from Midwest Tractors.



The Shoal Creek Fire Protection District sponsored an American Red Cross blood drive Monday afternoon in Engine House #1 in Sorento.  Fifteen people registered and 15 units were collected.  Jim Peterson received a three-gallon pin.


The Lady Comets soccer team defeated the Gillespie Miners, 5-2, on Monday.  Two goals were scored by Eliza Boyd and Maria Reinhard.  Brianna Wade scored one goal.  Assists were credited to Katie Munshaw and Kailah Hilmes. Kassidy Alderman picked up the win in goal, making 6 saves, with Emily Gaffner making 1 save in limited action.


Laurine E. Thurnau

Laurine E. Thurnau, age 88, of St. Jacob, passed away Monday, April 21, at Faith Countryside Homes in Highland.  Funeral services will be Friday, April 25 at 10:00 a.m. at the Spengel-Boulanger Funeral Home in Highland.  Burial will be in Keystone Cemetery in St. Jacob.  Friends may call Thursday from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. and Friday from 8:00 a.m. until service time at the funeral home.  Memorials are suggested to St. James Catholic Church.

She was born August 21, 1925, in Pierron, IL, the daughter of Melvin A. and Bertha M. (nee Rochelle) Knebel.

On October 24, 1951, she married Harold Paul Thurnau who passed away on June 23, 2013.

She was a member of St. James Catholic Church. She was also a member of St. Jacob Fireman's Auxiliary; Madison County Home Extension; St. James Altar Society; St. Jacob Home Coming Association.

Laurine was born in rural Pierron. She was a 1943 graduate of Highland High School. After her marriage she and her husband moved to St. Jacob and she lived there until moving to Faith Care Center almost 6 years ago. She had worked as a Secretary for Attorney Don Rikke and as a Secretary for Obering Oil Company in St. Jacob. When she started her family she stayed home with her children. She sold Stanley Home Products and was Treasurer for the Village of St. Jacob for a number of years. She enjoyed playing cards with friends and family and was an avid Bingo player. She also enjoyed cooking, collecting cookbooks, walking, and helping with St. Jacob Strawberry Festival ( from its beginning), worked on St. Jacob History Book, being part of Community activities in the Village of St. Jacob, picking, eating and cooking strawberries. She enjoyed time with neighbors and babysitting her grandchildren. Laurine took care of her daughter Jane who was blind and on dialysis for over 10 years.

Survivors include :
Daughter - Mary A. Rottmann, Highland, IL
Son - James L. (Sandy) Thurnau, Galesburg, IL
Son - Steven G. (Susan) Thurnau, Saint Jacob, IL
Daughter - Judith L. (Louis) Berkley, Conway, SC
Grandchild - Shelli L. (Gary) Claro, Highland, IL
Grandchild - Dennis A. (April) Rottmann, Pierron, IL
Grandchild - Jenny R. Thurnau, Milwaukee, WI
Grandchild - Carrie A. Thurnau, Galesburg, IL
Grandchild - Bobby L. Berkley, Conway, SC
Grandchild - Stefan M.(Lyndsie) Thurnau, Florissant, MO
Grandchild - Cindy L. Berkley, Highland, IL
Grandchild - Stacey J. Thurnau, Collinsville, IL
Grandchild - Shari B. Thurnau (Fiancee Jeff Keffer), Collinsville, IL
Great Grandchildren - Eight
Great Great Grandchild - One
Sister - Ethel Ludwig, Afton, MO
Brother In-law - Warren (Betty) Thurnau, Saint Jacob, IL
Sister In-law - Olive Nungesser, Alhambra, IL
Sister In-law - Eleanor Pirok, Highland, IL
Brother In-law - Clifford (Betty) Thurnau, Edwardsville, IL
Sister In-law - Joan (George) Willaredt, Edwardsville, IL
Brother In-law - Robert (Dorothy) Thurnau, Saint Jacob, IL
Brother In-law - Dale Gerstenecker, Columbia, IL

She was preceded in death :
Father - Melvin A. Knebel died 4/9/1958
Mother - Bertha M. Knebel nee Rochelle died 4/29/1975
Husband - Harold P. Thurnau died 6/23/2013
Daughter - Joan Marie Thurnau stillborn died 8/23/1974
Daughter - Jane M. Thurnau died 3/9/1995 age 37
Grandchild - Mark Rottmann died 1/5/1995 at age 18
Brother - Leslie Knebel died 2/20/1993
Brother In-law - Delmar Nungesser died 8/31/1984
Brother In-law - Henry Pirok died 10/6/2012
Sister In-law - Jeanette M. Taylor died 12/15/2009
Brother In-law - Louis Taylor died 3/2/2011
Sister In-law - Lyla Gerstenecker died 11/3/2005
Brother In-law - Charles Ludwig died 3/2/2002

Leveda Elaine Hessenauer

Leveda Elaine Hessenauer, age 87, of Sorento, passed away Saturday, April 19 at Gateway Regional Medical Center in Granite City.  Funeral arrangements are pending at the Donnell-Wiegand Funeral Home in Greenville.

Dorothy E. Schaeffer

Dorothy E. Schaeffer, age 91, of Carlyle, passed away Tuesday, April 22 at Carlyle Healthcare Center.  Funeral arrangements are pending at Zieren Day Funeral Home in Carlyle.

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