Latest news from The Southtown Star Online en-us Wed, 28 Jul 2010 14:10:16 PDT Southtown Star logo 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ 2 teens killed, 2 hurt in crash ]]> Lead story image

Two teens in a stolen car were killed and two others are in critical condition after an early morning wreck Sunday in Harvey, authorities said. ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 02:13:19 -0500 <![CDATA[ Library program inspiring youngsters ]]> Lead story image

A program embraced nearly a year ago by the Midlothian Public Library, intended to inform, involve and inspire young people, culminated in a permanent addition to the recently-renovated library. Engage! Teens, Art and Civic Participation, a pilot project based on the National Endowment for the Humanities’ “Picturing America” program which began in September, 2013, and ended in February, paved the way for the recently unveiled courtyard mural conceived and created by the program’s participants. “We’ve been waiting for this for several years,” Midlothian Library director Mary Beth Sharples said. After the library’s 2012 renovation, the courtyard space originally was intended … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 08:20:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ BAPA boss goes out with Cycling Classic ]]> Lead story image

Matt Walsh, the outgoing executive director of the Beverly Area Planning Association, wanted his last day in the post to be memorable, so he linked it to the 12th annual Beverly Hills Cycling Classic, which took place Thursday in Chicago’s Beverly and Morgan Park communities. “Only two other (Chicago) neighborhoods have a professional bike race,” Walsh said. “It’s bringing something exciting to the neighborhood. People can see their neighbors and enjoy a nice summer night.” The women’s pro-am bicycle race started at 4:40 p.m. and the men’s at 6:30 p.m., both from 107th Street and Longwood Drive. A Kids’ Big … ]]> Sun, 27 Jul 2014 02:16:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ Lockport’s Steampunk costume gala combines Victorian era, science fiction ]]> Lead story image

Men donned their top hats and goggles. Women squeezed uncomfortably into corsets. Everyone appeared to laugh and enjoy the Steampunk costume gala in Lockport Saturday. “It so fits with a 19th century canal town,” said Mayor Steven Streit, of the Lockport’s Visionary Summer Art Series. “We still use that canal today.” Streit said the Illinois and Michigan Canal, which runs through Lockport, was visionary for its day. “That’s what steampunk is all about,” he said. About 150 people attended the event, mostly dressed in attire from the subculture of that combines Victorian era with science fiction. “The beauty of steampunk … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 02:08:43 -0500 <![CDATA[ Robbins walk a ‘great start’ in fight against violence ]]> Lead story image

Organizers behind an anti-violence walk in Robbins hope it becomes an annual event. About 75 people attended the first village of Robbins Walk Against Violence on Saturday morning. Half of the money raised from the event is going toward the YWCA Metropolitan Chicago, Robbins Mayor Tyrone Ward said. Ward said the effort grew out his administration’s desire to prevent violent crimes and support survivors of violence. It also comes in response to the discovery last year of dozens of untested rape kits inside the village’s police department. “We are standing firm against all types of violence,” Ward said. Organizers hoped … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 02:08:33 -0500 <![CDATA[ Hundreds gather in remembrance of Tinley Park teen ]]> Lead story image

Matt Kocher was a gentle giant. At just 15 years old, he was well above 6-feet tall and probably wasn’t done growing. His feet were so big that his family had to special order shoes for him. Those who love him knew that, beneath the Tinley Park teen’s large structure was kindness and a softness. “Whenever he was talking to someone that wasn’t one his friends,” said Nathan Xiao, while pointing to himself and several buddies, “he would blush.” Matt drowned while swimming through rough waters in Lake Michigan exactly one year ago Sunday. More than 200 people gathered inside … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 02:08:22 -0500 <![CDATA[ Details outlined in fire chief-sharing deal ]]> Lead story image

Oak Lawn Fire Chief George Sheets will have full responsibility over the Chicago Ridge Fire Department, but staffing remains the job of the Chicago Ridge mayor and trustees, according to an agreement approved by each village board. The SouthtownStar obtained copies of the agreement through Illinois’ freedom of information law. Under the unusual arrangement, approved by Chicago Ridge on July 15 and Oak Lawn on July 8, Sheets will have “all of the traditional powers and authorities” and will be in charge of “all personnel, equipment, apparatus and staff vehicles” for the Chicago Ridge department through 2016. Its staffing “shall … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 02:09:14 -0500 <![CDATA[ Letting children be children ]]> Lead story image

It was a week filled with typical summer activities — fishing, boating, swimming and watching baseball. But what is typical for many children was a first-time experience for youngsters from public housing developments in Robbins, Chicago Heights and Ford Heights, who were welcomed to Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart’s Youth Camp for disadvantaged kids. “Our goal is to have fun and build trust,” said Dart, who met the kids out at the Tampier Lake Forest Preserve at 131st Street and Wolf Road on Friday afternoon. “We care a lot about these kids. We do not want it to be a … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 02:08:12 -0500 <![CDATA[ 2 teenagers killed, 2 others wounded in crash in Harvey ]]> Lead story image

Two teens in a stolen car were killed and two others are in critical condition after an early morning wreck Sunday in Harvey, authorities said. A 16-year-old boy and an 18-year-old woman died at the scene, said Harvey spokesman Sean Howard. Two juveniles, one of whom was driving the 4-door Saturn, remain in intensive care at Advocate Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn. The single-vehicle crash happened at about 2:10 a.m. in the 300 block of East Sibley Boulevard, Howard said. Police believe the car was traveling at least 60 mph when it reached a train viaduct near a Metra parking … ]]> Mon, 28 Jul 2014 02:09:24 -0500 <![CDATA[ Men in wigs, face paint rob Lansing bank ]]> Lead story image

Three men in face paint and wigs robbed a bank in Lansing on Friday afternoon, according to the FBI. They entered the Great Lakes Bank branch at 18120 Torrence Ave. about 3:50 p.m. and announced a robbery while displaying a handgun, the FBI said. The FBI described the incident as a “takeover bank robbery.” The suspects are described as black men about 6 feet tall with black hair and brown eyes, the FBI said. They were wearing wigs and paint on their faces. Anybody with information about the robbery is asked to contact the FBI’s Chicago office at (312) 421-6700. … ]]> Sun, 27 Jul 2014 02:12:22 -0500 <![CDATA[ Fire shuts down Orland Park restaurant, craft brewery ]]>

An Orland Park restaurant and craft brewery was closed overnight following a Friday afternoon fire. Fire sprinklers are being credited with mitigating damage and stopping the spread of the fire at Granite City Food and Brewery, 14035 S. La Grange Road. Officials said the fire would have caused significantly more damage if it were not for the sprinkler system. Firefighters who arrived on scene about 4 p.m. Friday found smoke in the brewing room and a small fire that had been contained by two sprinkler heads. The fire was confined to an upstairs corner and away from the kitchen and … ]]> Sat, 26 Jul 2014 22:40:59 -0500 <![CDATA[ Widow of truck driver killed in I-55 crash files suit ]]>

The widow of a semi truck driver killed in a crash on Interstate 55 near Channahon on Monday afternoon has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against his employer and the company that supplied the trailer of the truck he was driving. Neringa Mockus filed the suit in Cook County Circuit Court on Friday against Mediterranean Shipping Co. and Direct Trucking Corp. on behalf of her late husband, Deividas Mockus. Deividas Mockus was an independent owner and operator of a semi truck who had been hired by Direct Trucking to transport a container and trailer owned by Mediterranean, according to the … ]]> Sun, 27 Jul 2014 02:12:11 -0500 <![CDATA[ Oak Lawn officially reopens improved Memorial Park ]]> Lead story image

The reopening ceremony for Oak Lawn’s renovated Memorial Park this past week brought out dozens of families to celebrate the park’s new features, designed to offer something for all ages. Mayor Sandra Bury said the Oak Lawn Park District and director Maddie Kelly had done an “incredible job” in upgrading and renovating the park, 102nd Street and Major Avenue. “Maddie was right when she said park districts should reinvent themselves,” Bury said. “There’s something for everyone. It is a jewel.” Kelly said the park district wanted the park to offer activities to attract people of all ages, including basketball and … ]]> Sun, 27 Jul 2014 02:15:47 -0500 <![CDATA[ Husband of former Country Club Hills police chief sentenced ]]> Lead story image

The husband of a former police chief was sentenced to 12 months in federal prison Friday for his role in a fraud scheme involving his wife and her brother. Ronald Evans Jr., husband of former Country Club Hills Police Chief Regina Evans, pleaded guilty in August to federal charges of money laundering and wire fraud, according to a statement from the U.S. attorney’s office for the Central District of Illinois. Regina Evans was sentenced to five years in prison and ordered to pay restitution in May after she pleaded guilty to fraud charges. Her brother, Ricky McCoy, pleaded guilty in … ]]> Sun, 27 Jul 2014 02:11:27 -0500 <![CDATA[ Robbins plans walk for peace on Saturday ]]>

Robbins Mayor Tyrone Ward has a slogan he shares when he’s proactive in things that involve his constituents. “We’re not just talking the talk, we’re walking the walk,” the mayor says. “They (community) think it is a great idea and they are very supportive.” Ward and the Village of Robbins has partnered up with the YWCA Metropolitan Chicago’s South Suburban Center for the Walk Against Violence scheduled for Saturday. The 3K run/1.5K walk will start on the 13600 block of south Sawyer Avenue in Robbins at 8 a.m. Points of interest during the run/walk will include the National Guard Armory … ]]> Fri, 25 Jul 2014 21:12:01 -0500 <![CDATA[ Proud American Days on in New Lenox ]]> Lead story image

What started out in 1984 as a couple of guys, a tent and a keg has turned into one of the largest summer festivals in the Southland. More than 30,000 people are expected this weekend for the annual Proud American Days in New Lenox. The festival, hosted by the New Lenox Park District, runs through Sunday and features a carnival, car show, military tribute and numerous other activities. Organizers said there will be a variety of new food vendors. As part of the military tribute, Makena Hartlin will perform “Proud To Be an American.” Hartlin is a New Lenox resident … ]]> Fri, 25 Jul 2014 02:11:21 -0500