4:27 pm
Mon December 23, 2013

A "Windup" Toy Story

Dean Rockwell
Rich Egger/WIUM

Dean Rockwell of Macomb has a pretty good idea what he will receive for one of his Christmas gifts each year.

“The first year I was married, my wife Jan bought me a Santa Claus windup toy. The reindeer looks like a moose pulling the sleigh,” Rockwell said with a chuckle.

“And I just enjoyed it so very much -- it was kind of like a throwback to my childhood. She got all enthused and has been buying me windup toys ever since.”

Dean and Jan Rockwell have been married for more than 40 years so his windup toys have grown into a fairly sizeable collection.

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2:30 pm
Mon December 23, 2013

Sangamon Co. Sheriff's Office To Help With Concealed Carry Applications

Credit flickr

A central Illinois sheriff is offering to help residents apply online for concealed-carry firearms permits.  
The Sangamon County sheriff's office said Monday that, beginning Jan. 6, residents can use a computer in the department's records lobby. The department also will provide technical assistance. 

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11:00 am
Mon December 23, 2013

Former DCFS Director Calica Dies

Richard Calica

The former head of Illinois’ child welfare department died overnight.

Richard Calica resigned his position with the state Department of Children and Family Services last month.

He’d been diagnosed with cancer and had undergone surgery.  When he resigned - Governor Pat Quinn praised Calica for adding more than 100 child welfare investigators to the department.

Calica’s chief of staff took over the department on an interim basis when he resigned.

Calica was 67.

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Christmas Archives
8:00 am
Mon December 23, 2013

Christmas Archives --- December 23, 2013

This is the WUIS Christmas Archives... for Monday... December 23rd.   I'm Rich Bradley

It's December 23, 1980... and from the Illinois State Journal-Register... Eight delivery trucks... and 1 station wagon... full of food... clothing... and toys are on the road today for the Friend in Deed Funds.

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Illinois Supreme Court
6:30 am
Mon December 23, 2013

Insurance Company Must Defend Policyholder

Credit Brian Mackey/WUIS

The Illinois Supreme Court has put a limit on just who can be excluded from a car insurance policy.

Ana Reyes is being sued for allegedly hitting two people with her car — injuring a mother and killing the woman's four-year-old.

In the lawsuit that followed, Reyes’ insurance company argued it had no duty to defend Reyes or pay the victims.

Insurance company American Access listed Reyes as the policyholder, but it also excluded her from her own policy, and made another man the primary driver.

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Christmas Archives
1:13 pm
Sun December 22, 2013

Christmas Archives --- December 22, 2013

This is the WUIS Christmas Archives... for Sunday... December 22nd.   I'm Rich Bradley

From the Illinois State Journal on this date in 1970... a first grade boy from Butler Elementary wrote a letter... printed on the front page... reading:  “I am unhappy.  Your paper said it would snow.  It did not and I could not make a snowman.  Can you do better?   It is signed:  Paul Gifford.  The paper's response is “We're trying, Paul...”

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Christmas Archives
8:00 am
Sat December 21, 2013

Christmas Archives --- December 21, 2013

This is the WUIS Christmas Archives... for Saturday... December 21st.   I'm Rich Bradley

In 1966... the December 21st edition of the Illinois State Journal's front page features a desperate call for last-minute donations to the "Friend indeed fund. 

A life-size nativity scene was found on the state capitol lawn over the weekend and police are looking for the owners.  It's believed it was placed there by pranksters. 

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Kate is a graduating senior at the University of Oklahoma in the Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication. She has produced news segments for KGOU's student program, Assignment: Radio, and most recently produced on-air and online community calendar listings, along with a weekly arts and entertainment blog, OneSix8.

Eric 'Guitar' Davis
5:41 pm
Fri December 20, 2013

Blues Musician With Local Ties Shot Dead

Eric "Guitar" Davis at the 2010 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, Tenn.
Credit Bob Kieser/Blues Blast Magazine via Illinois Central Blues Club

A Chicago blues guitarist who regularly performed in Springfield has been shot and killed.

Chicago police say officers found 41-year-old Eric "Guitar" Davis shot multiple times inside a vehicle in the South Shore neighborhood on Thursday morning.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Davis had spent the previous evening hanging out at a North Side blues bar called Kingston Mines.

Davis played with a group called the Troublemakers and was a fixture on Chicago's blues scene.

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John W. Poole is a video producer for NPR. He makes documentary films and multimedia presentations for the web and digital platforms, extending the reach and power of traditional photojournalism with moving pictures and sound.

In 2007, Poole came to NPR to help develop a visual media strategy, combining the organization's audio storytelling strength with still and motion photography. His work has led to two national Emmy nominations for the NPR Music series 'Project Song' and one for an investigative series on traumatic brain injury.