• Veterans Day, Nov. 11th, is this coming Saturday and it is a time to remember the sacrifices made by our veterans, living and dead, in defense of this nation — and freedom!
The photos in the “Scrapbook” feature (pages 4 and 5 of this week’s print and online editions) were shot in 2007 at the special service held in front of the Citizens Building on the corner of Water and William streets.
The service was held at that location for several years after Charles Barnes purchased the building. A huge American flag, several stories in length, was unfurled on the front of the building.
I participated in the ceremony several times during the years I served as Decatur’s mayor and was the speaker at the 2007 ceremony.
The service has not been held at that location for several years but I have very special memories of the veterans who participated in that downtown ceremony and always felt special by their presence there.
• THE RACE for Macon County Coroner is going to be one of the most interesting for that office that we’ve seen in decades.
Of course, present coroner, Mike Day, has been in that position for two decades and it was almost a “given” that he would win in his multiple re-election bids.
Now that he is not running for re-election, several candidates have already stepped forward including Michael Burkham, Tiffany Hall and Jeffrey Kashefska.
As we are going to press, a fourth candidate has informed me that he is also running for coroner. Since I have not received his official declaration I will withhold his name but it appears there will be at least four candidates to replace Mike Day at coroner.
I’m pleased to see that several quality candidates are stepping up.
• NASTY! I don’t know if it is the change in weather, or what, but several people have called, or let me know in conversations, to say there is a lot of “colds” and “coughing” where they frequent.
I can identify with that as I’m in the final stages of a head cold and I never coughed and sneezed so hard and long in my life!
It has been years since I’ve had a cold but this one was a major problem!
This “cold season” is nothing to “sneeze at”. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist that last sentence.)
• CONCERN: The potential move of the Heritage Behavioral Health Facility to a building in Northgate, next to St. Teresa High School, continues to draw concern from not only St. Teresa parents and school officials, but from some neighbors who live close by.
Last week we printed some “letters to the editor” against that potential move and this week more “letters to the editor” express the same concern.
Also, on page 2, there is a letter to the editor from Mary Garrison, President and CEO of Heritage Behavioral Health Center, with her perspective on the importance of the services Heritage provides in Decatur. If the proposed facility has to be rezoned in order to accommodate Heritage, the city council will have to approve the rezoning and it appears that many who are against the move to that location are counting on city council not to approve rezoning.
The only way the city council has any power in the potential move of Heritage to the Northgate site, is if rezoning is required.
• QUICK SERVICE — I again ordered my license plate sticker from the Secretary of State’s office via online and received the sticker in the mail a few days later.
This is something I’ve done two or three times and I really like the ease of the process.
Next year, it is time for me to renew my driver’s license and I have to take the vision and road test.
Although I liked it better when I renewed my driver’s license online, I’m interested in finding out how the new “appointment system” works when it comes time for me to renew.
I really didn’t like spending several hours in the Secretary of State’s facility on North Woodford waiting my turn to take a driver’s test, although the last time I took the road test, I was the first in line because most people were already ordering some of the services offered by the office, like license stickers, online.
The new added “appointment” schedule should make the wait much quicker, although I wonder how fast it will be due to some people never being on time for any appointment — and backing up everyone else.
• I JOIN Brian Byers on WSOY’s Byers & Co. every Thursday morning at 7:00 for the City Hall Insider.
• Subscribe to the print and/or online editions of the Decatur Tribune and find out a lot more about what’s going on in Decatur and Central Illinois — and why. You can order elsewhere on this website.