STATE & NATIONAL NEWS

Land Of Lincoln Honor Flight 
‘Takes To The Air’ Sept. 16

The Land of Lincoln Honor Flight (LLHF) of Springfield, will again take to the air on Tuesday, September 16th, for their 5th flight of the 2014 flying season. 
Now serving central and southern Illinois, this Flight #29 on a chartered 737 jet will have 84 Veterans aboard from the US Air Force, Army, Marines and Navy service branches, as well as one from the World War II Merchant Marines. 
On this no-cost, day long trip to Washington, DC, to visit and reflect at their national memorials, the Veterans will be accompanied by 74 volunteer Guardian escorts who pay their own way and are responsible for the comfort, logistics, mobility and safety of their Veteran(s) for the day.
  Departing Springfield around 6:15 AM, they will land at Ronald Reagan National Airport in DC, then will be transported for the day on three tour buses, called Red, White and Blue. The itinerary includes stops at the national World War II Memorial, Korean Memorial, Vietnam Memorial, National Air & Space Museum (Chantilly, Virginia), Air Force and Marine Corps Memorials, Pentagon drive-by and concludes at Arlington National Cemetery, with viewing the Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers and Changing of the Guard.  During the day they will also have the opportunity to visit the Lincoln Memorial, as well as see the Washington Monument, Jefferson Memorial, DC World War I Memorial, and much more. 
  The 26 World War II, 44 Korean War era and 14 Vietnam War era Veterans on this flight come from many Illinois cities.  
The public is invited and encouraged to show their appreciation for these Veterans by welcoming them home when they return to Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport that evening, arriving at approximately 9:30 PM. It is suggested to be to the airport by 8:30-8:45 and feel free to wear red, white & blue to show your patriotic spirit or bring small American flags, balloons, posters, etc.
  Land of Lincoln Honor Flight also announces that its October 28th final flight for 2014 is filled. However, Veteran applications continue to be accepted for the 2015 flight season. Veterans are flown in the order their application is received, with priority given in the following order:
World War II ~ a person enlisted by 12/31/1946
Korean War Era ~ 01/01/1947 to 12/31/1957
Vietnam War Era ~ 01/01/1958 to 05/07/1975
  Land of Lincoln Honor Flight is a 501(c)3 non-profit, receiving no federal, state or county funding. It is able to fly Veterans on their Honor Flight through the generous donations, sponsorships, fund raising and efforts of many individuals, businesses and organizations. 
For more information on the Honor Flight mission, to obtain a Veteran or Guardian application, arrange a speaker to your organization, or make a donation to LLHF, visit the official web site at LandofLincolnHonorFlight.org or contact John Dust, marketing/media director, at HonorFlightGuy@aol.com or cell 309-339-0227.






Jeffrey Geisler Appointed Illinois Associate Judge
in the Sixth Judicial Circuit


Michael J. Tardy, Director of the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts, announced today (Sept. 11) that the Sixth Judicial Circuit judges voted to select Jeffrey S. Geisler as an associate judge of the Sixth Judicial Circuit.
Geisler received his undergraduate degree in 1982 from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale,Illinois, and his Juris Doctor in1986 from Memphis State in Memphis, Tennessee.
Geisler is currently affiliated with Geisler Law Offices in Decatur.


State of Illinois Proclaims September 14-20
Illinois Rail Safety Week


The State of Illinois, with support from the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, Illinois Commerce Commission, Illinois Department of Transportation, Illinois Farm Bureau, Illinois Operations Lifesaver, Illinois Sheriff's Association, and the Illinois Truck Enforcement Association, has declared September 14 to September 20 as Illinois Rail Safety Week in order to promote vehicle and pedestrian safety around railroad tracks and trains. In Illinois during 2013, there were 126 crossing collisions involving motor vehicles, which resulted in 40 injuries and 21 fatalities. In addition, there were 20 trespasser incidents that resulted in 27 injuries and 25 fatalities when people trespassed on to railroad property. During 2013, Illinois ranked 3rd in the nation in both vehicle collision fatalities and trespasser fatalities.
To promote rail safety awareness and education, the Macon County Sheriff's Office will be participating in Illinois Rail Safety Week. Enforcement details are planned throughout the week at various railroad grade crossings within Macon County to cite both drivers and pedestrians who disobey the laws associated with railroad grade crossings and railroad property. In addition, police officers will be distributing literature to the public that contains information on how to be safe around trains and train tracks.
Remember, not only is it against the law to stop your vehicle on the railroad tracks, it is against the law to stop your vehicle anywhere within the highway-rail grade crossing. Highway-rail grade crossing are typically marked by white stop line located on the pavement in advance of the crossing, and if not marked by white stop lines, the highway-rail grade crossing extends from protective gate arm to protective gate arm.
According to Illinois Operations Lifesaver, more than 50 percent of all collisions occur at crossings with active warning devices (flashing lights, ages, and ringing bells). When crossing railroad tracks, you must always obey the law and be aware of your surroundings. For more information about Illinois Rail Safety Week, visit www.illinoisrailsafetyweek.org.

Manar secures funding to keep
local homeless shelter open

  For the second year in a row, Decatur’s Oasis Day Center, a homeless shelter providing mental health services to 2,200 local residents, will remain open and in full operation because of a $300,000 state grant from the Illinois Department of Human Services secured with help from State Senator Andy Manar (D–Bunker Hill). 
“The Oasis Day Center is vital to the community of Decatur,” Manar said. “It helps people who are suffering from real problems find shelter and the help they need to rebuild their lives. This continued grant demonstrates that Illinois’ state government is investing in our downstate communities – not just Chicago.”
In the spring of 2013, the center learned that federal budget cuts meant the loss of its main source of funding. Unless the $300,000 per year could be replaced, the center would have had no choice but to close its doors. Concerned about the impact such a loss would have on the community, area leaders including Mayor Mike McElroy and staff and board members from the Oasis Day Center approached Manar for assistance in keeping the center open utilizing possible state support.
Manar quickly communicated the need for funding to state officials and to the governor and his staff to convince them that Decatur’s homeless center should be a top priority. This year, Manar followed up to make sure the center would continue to receive the funding it needs.
"I'm glad the senator has once again stepped forward to keep this vital community resource open and available for those who unfortunately find themselves in need of this service. I want to personally thank the senator,” said Mayor Mike McElroy. “This continues to be a quality of life issue and we are grateful for his continued assistance."
"It is important to me that we provide a basic safety net for those in need," said State Rep. Sue Scherer, D-Decatur. "The Oasis Day Center provides extensive services for both physical and mental needs, places a value on the lives of area homeless and provides a path to better health and future opportunities."
Open 365 days each year with seven full-time staff, the Oasis Day Center provides homeless people, including those suffering from substance abuse and mental illness, a safe place to meet their basic needs while linking them to services in the community.




decaturtribune@aol.com 
or to: Decatur Tribune, 
P. O. Box 1490, 
Decatur, IL 62525-1490.

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Young people at the World War II Memorial in front of the Decatur Civic Center.

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