A reporter for 35 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.
- Member for
- 4 years 12 months
WILLMAR — When the police officer enters the kitchen of a house after responding to a report of domestic assault, the female victim says her assailant just got out of jail, is drunk and has a gun. The man comes around a corner, waves a booze bottle around, apologizes for the police being called and then suddenly pulls out a gun and fires at the officer. Quick on the draw, the officer fires first and the assailant falls to the floor.
NEW LONDON — The completion date for the New London-Spicer Schools performing arts auditorium has been delayed again. After ground was broken in August of 2016, the 650-seat theater was scheduled to be done by November — in time for the fall music concerts and high school play. But then the deadline was pushed back to December. And then it was pushed back to mid-January. The completion date has now been set for Feb. 28 — but that's only if the roof is in place by Dec. 11.
WILLMAR — President Trump's action Thursday declaring the opioid crisis a public health emergency was praised by a local lawmaker who has been a leading advocate for opioid reform following the death of his son from an accidental overdose. Rep. Dave Baker, R-Willmar, said the federal declaration allows agencies to expedite hiring, cut red tape, and re-direct existing resources to address opioid addiction and deaths. "Today marks a new chance to start to turn the tide of the opioid crisis," Baker said in a statement.
WILLMAR — A bold act 500 years ago by a German monk named Martin Luther that split the Roman Catholic Church and gave birth to Protestant religions is being commemorated Sunday afternoon in an ecumenical service in Willmar that will focus on unity. It may surprise some that the service is being held at a Catholic church. It may come as a further surprise that the Service of Common Prayer was initiated by Father Steve Verhelst, from the Church of St. Mary in Willmar and Our Lady of the Lakes Catholic Church in Spicer.
LITCHFIELD – A semi struck an extended bucket on a boom truck Tuesday afternoon in downtown Litchfield sending two city workers tumbling out of the bucket and landing on top of the semi. The two employees, Michael David Grabow, 40, of Litchfield, and Randy Wayne Groskreutz, 54, of Hutchinson, were taken to the Meeker Memorial Hospital in Litchfield with non-life-threatening injuries.
LITCHFIELD — A former veteran Litchfield police sergeant will not have to serve jail time after pleading guilty to a gross misdemeanor charge of driving while impaired. Bryant James Blackwell, 50, of Litchfield, was sentenced last week to 365 days in jail; however, 363 days of that sentence was stayed and he was given credit for two days already served. He was placed on probation for two years and ordered to complete a chemical assessment, attend a Mothers Against Drunk Driving impact panel and pay fines and fees of $840.
WILLMAR — Too much rain and muddy fields are slowing down harvest this fall in west central Minnesota. Usually by this time, soybean harvest is nearly done and corn harvest is well underway. But soybean harvest is just getting started and harvesting corn for grain is a long ways off for most. "We are slower than normal because we've had so much rain this fall," said Liz Ludwig, Farm Service Agency director for Chippewa and Yellow Medicine counties.
NEW LONDON — Julia Iverson figures she's been painting since she was 5 years old. While those early pieces of artwork are long gone and over the years she's given away and sold scores of original pieces — mostly watercolors — the 81-year-old New London artist and retired art teacher still paints nearly every day. She has had quite a stash of her work hanging on walls and stored under beds in her roomy, three-story home. So when she and her husband, Roger, downsized their living quarters this year, Iverson knew she had to find new homes for some paintings.
WILLMAR – A passenger vehicle collided with a tractor that was pulling farm equipment Monday evening near Willmar, injuring the two occupants of the vehicle. The driver of the tractor, Michael Schliep, 45, of Willmar, was not injured. According to Kandiyohi County Sheriff Dan Hartog, the accident happened at around 7 p.m. on County Road 9 Northeast, just south of the Willmar High School.
NEW LONDON — When the golfing season ends next week at the Little Crow Country Club, the construction season will begin. A $7.8 million project will change the face of the popular New London area golf course and put it at a new level in the recreation and hospitality realm. Groundbreaking for the project — which includes a 51-room GrandStay hotel with swimming pool, 300-seat event center with a west vista of the golf course, and new 75-seat restaurant, pro shop, driving range and parking lot — will be at 4 p.m. Oct. 25.