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Expansion at Franciscan St. Margaret Health-Dyer

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Franciscan St. Margaret Health-Dyer is undergoing a multimillion-dollar renovation project over the next year expanding its emergency, surgical and laboratory departments.
 “The goal of the project is to expand a comprehensive emergency center of excellence. We will remodel and expand the current surgical space, remodel and improve the surgical preadmission space and expand and improve the central sterile processing department for surgery, as well as improve the main corridor and flow to the Emergency Department on the main level,” John Mentgen, hospital executive vice president and chief operating officer said, adding, “The new design will be targeted at meeting the ever-growing population in south Lake County and to help achieve our continual growth in the emergency services and surgical services areas.”  
Work began in late October and is scheduled to be completed at the end of 2014.  For the Emergency Department the project includes:
     * A 3,500-square-foot addition.
     * Renovating existing space and optimizing patient care areas.
     * Designing new, specialized patient exam rooms.
     * Adding a five-bed observation unit.
     * Creating results-waiting triage space to make visits quicker.
     * A new state-of-the-art trauma room that will double the size of the current facility.
     * Addition of a private, behavioral health suite.
     * A new isolation room for infectious patients.

Current operations will not be affected while the work is taking place, Dan Ratko, hospital project manager of construction, said.  “The project will be done in phases – everything will remain open while it is being completed,” he said, adding the result will optimize capabilities and offer patients the best possible care.  The department also will receive new monitors and an improved nurses’ station that will provide visibility of all exam rooms. A new nurse call and tracking system and staff assistance tags will help patients better communicate with caregivers, Ratko said.
Surgery department improvements will include a new, 760-square-foot advanced surgical suite, new preadmission testing space, expanding the sterilization process for surgical instruments and physician locker room upgrades, Marla Hoyer-Lareau, hospital chief nursing officer and vice president of patient services, said....

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Parental Involvement Helps Kids do Better in School

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Bill Stanczykiecz
Despite educational reform, the reassessment of schools and teachers and the increased popularity of charter schools and vouchers, research continues to indicate that high levels of parental involvement lead to high levels of academic achievement. 

Bill Stanczykiewicz president and CEO of the Indiana Youth Institute says parents need to be active on two fronts when it comes to their child advancing in school.  Stanczykiewicz says parents or guardians need to be active at both the school by "going to parent teacher conferences and other school activities as well as checking in at home checking in on the homework, asking how the school day went, asking about school activities, what they're doing in school tomorrow" and other things like that.
Stanczykiewicz says, "We need to make sure parents know they're uniquely responsible and uniquely influential in the lives of their kids and it is up to them (parents) to be proactive in the schooling of their children." 
 
He adds that there on some steps schools can take to be even more inviting " so that those parents do take advantage of all the opportunities and help that are available to their kids in that school from talented educators."
You can discover more about parental involvement, November's topic of the Indiana Youth Institute by visiting:  http://www.iyi.org

(photo:  Bill Stanczykiewicz president and CEO of the Indiana Youth Institute visit the Region News Team Studios last month)...

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Chicago Blackhawks Honored at the White House

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Five-time Stanley Cup champions ... the Chicago Blackhawks ... were at the White House today . President Obama says he's proud to have welcomed the hockey players twice since he's been in office ... and put a shout out to his other hometown teams saying he is term-limited, so to the Bulls, Bears, Cubs, White Sox, get a move on it.
The Chicago Blackhawks spent Monday morning visiting with wounded soldiers at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center....

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Pence Proclaims November Adoption Month

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Gov Mike Pence
Indiana Governor Mike Pence today issued a proclamation declaring the month of November as “Adoption Month” in the Hoosier state. Governor Pence says, “With increased awareness for adoption opportunities in Indiana, we strive to achieve permanent placement and successful adoption for Hoosier children, helping them to grow and develop to their full potential in a safe and loving environment.”
Currently, the Indiana Department of Child Services is actively recruiting adoptive families for nearly 100 children, and more than 100-thousand children in the U-S foster care system are waiting to be adopted. The proclamation coincides with an Information and Awareness Adoption Fair that Governor Pence will help to kick off Wednesday afternoon at the Indiana Statehouse...

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Senator Coats' Staff Holding Office Hours in Rensselaer

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Senator Dan Coats
US Indiana Dan Coats' staff will be in Jasper County this Thursday afternoon to meet with local residents and assist them with any problems they maybe having with a federal agency. If interested feel free to stop by from 1pm to 3pm at the Rensselaer Public Library, located in the two-hundred block of West Susan Street in Rensselaer. ...

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Quarry Blast Rattles West Suburban Chicago

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Residents in West suburban Chicago got an unexpected rattle this afternoon. ABC News says initial reports from the US Geological Survey show a 3.7 magnitude earthquake centered 20 miles southeast of Chicago....but the agency retracted that, saying it was the result of a quarry blast. Witnesses say the rumbling lasted about five seconds. There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries....

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LaPorte Police Seek Help in Located Wanted Man

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marcus koehn
(Photo Courtesy of the LaPorte Police Dept)
Police in Laporte are seeking the public's help in located a 28 year old man wanted on warrants issued by LaPorte Superior 3 Court for battery, two-counts of failure to appear for battery and invasion of privacy. LaPorte Police describe Marcus Koehn as a white male, 5'9”, weighing 180 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes.
If you know his immediate whereabouts, call 911. If you have any other information on Koehn, please contact the La Porte Police Department at 362-9446, or La Porte Metro Operations at 325-9022. You can remain anonymous....

Read more: LaPorte Police Seek Help in Located Wanted Man

 

Body Found in Burned Out Vehicle in Gary

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Gary PD
Police in Gary investigating another homicide, one-block from where a couple was found stabbed to death Friday afternoon. Gary Police Corp. Gabrielle King says an officer on patrol discovered a burned out vehicle, in the 27-hundred block of Maryland Street, and upon further inspection, found legs sticking out of it. Corp. King says Chief Wage Ingram is going to have the GRIT Federal Task Force make an identification of the body and see if the recent mid-town homicides are related.
A 62 year old man and his 54 year old wife were found stabbed to death inside their home on Friday in the 25-hundred block of Delaware Street. Anyone with information regarding these incidents is asked to please contact Gary Police. ...

Read more: Body Found in Burned Out Vehicle in Gary

 

Utility Work to Close Highland Intersection Tuesday

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The Highland Police Department want motorists to know that Garfield Avenue will be closed at Kennedy Avenue from 8a.m.-4p.m., Tuesday, November 5th so NIPSCO can perform utility work. The police department says Kennedy Avenue will not be accessible from Garfield Avenue and that the outside lane of northbound Kennedy Avenue will also be closed at Garfield Avenue.

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Press Conference on Murdered Hobart Man at Piatak

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piatak murder chief Byrd
At a press conference this afternoon the Northwest Indiana Major Crimes Task Force Spokesperson Robert Byrd released more information regarding the murder of a Hobart man found at a Merrillville business. Bryd says the victim has been identified as 27 year old Andrew Fugate, of Hobart, whose body was found by Merrillville Police inside a cooler at Piatak Meats. Byrd says Fugate, whose father is part owner of the business, arrived shortly after 4am to begin his daily food preparation duties and died due to a gunshot wound. Byrd says although nothing was taken, evidence suggests a burglary had taken place. A burglary had been previously reported at the business in June. Authorities have obtained some leads but there are no suspects at last check. Anyone with information regarding this homicide is is asked to contact Merrillville Police.
piatak murder site 1 ...

Read more: Press Conference on Murdered Hobart Man at Piatak

 

INDOT: Deck Replacement of SR 49 Bridge Near Kouts

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Indot Logo color
The State Road 49 Bridge, at the Porter/Jasper County line, near Kouts, is scheduled to possibly have some work done next year. INDOT spokesman Matt Deitchley says the deck of the bridge will be replaced so they can preserve the historical aspect of the truss bridge, which allows them to access federal funds. Deitchley says they are looking to put the project out for bid in early 2014.
Deitchley says the way bridge was constructed, doing one-side at a time is not an option and would take longer to finish construction, so it will have to be closed during the reconstruction, which is anticipated to last one construction season and expected to be reopened later in that year. ...

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Hobart Man Found Murdered at Piatak Meats

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Authorities are investigating a murder that took place this morning at a Merrillville business. The Northwest Indiana Major Crimes Task Force reports a burglary was discovered by another employee arriving for work at 7am, who also found the body of 27 year old Andrew Fugate, of Hobart, on the cooler floor of Piatak Meats. Authorities say Fugate, whose father is part owner of the business, arrived at the business shortly after 4am to begin his daily food preparation duties and died after being shot. Anyone with information regarding this homicide is asked to contact Merrillville Police. More information is expected to be made available at a news conference this afternoon at 3pm...

Read more: Hobart Man Found Murdered at Piatak Meats

   

Woman Killed in Gary Fire Sunday Identified

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Gary fire officials say one person is dead and three others injured after a residential fire Sunday morning. Crews were called to the four-thousand block of Louisiana Street shortly after 6:30 am. A 71-year-old woman was pronounced dead at an area hospital. The Lake County Coroners office has identified the woman who died as 71-year-old Essie Hill. Authorities continue to try to determine the cause of the fire.






 ...

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Death Investigation Reported in Merrillville

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Breaking-News
Police in Merrillville are at Piatak Meats at 61st and Broadway investigating reports of a death. The Lake County Coroners office has reportedly been called out. The Major Crimes Task Force is on scene. Authorities were dispatched this morning. No other information was being released at this hour....

Read more: Death Investigation Reported in Merrillville

   

GOP Caucus Chooses New Lake County Assessor

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Lake County begins this week with a newly-named county assessor. 46-year-old Jolie Covaciu of Cedar Lake was selected in a county Republican caucus of precinct committee members Friday to fill a post formerly held by the late Hank Adams. Adams passed away early last month at the age of 77 shortly after stepping down from his elected post for health reasons. Covaciu, Lake County's first female county assessor, defeated Debra Johnson by a vote of 56-52. Adams was the first Republican elected to a countywide seat in Lake County in over half a century....

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Lowell Seeks New Tree for Christmas

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In south Lake County, Lowell is reaching out to the public for a new town Christmas tree for this holiday season. Council President Edgar Corns says the current one, an artificial tree that stands twenty-feet tall and used to be in Southlake Mall many years ago, is showing signs of wear and tear on the branches. Corns says one option is if someone has a live tree they need to remove this fall, and they'd like to donate the tree, the town will have the tree cut down and moved.  The town's artificial tree is set up each year in front of the American Legion Post off of Route 2. Corns said he didn't know if replanting a live tree would be an option or not.   For more information, contact Lowell Town Hall  (219) 696-7794.

...

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Donated Stone Placed at Boy's Gravesite

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choatephoto
A woman in the state of Washington spent a year collecting two-thousand dollars in donations to buy a gravestone for Christian Choate, someone she never knew. Pat Breslin says she was moved by what she had read online about the Lake County boy, who police say died after years of abuse, including being locked up in a dog crate. The child's father and stepmother are both in prison, having been sentenced in connection with the boy's death. The 13-year-old is buried at Ridgelawn Cemetery in Gary under the name Christian Eriks, the name of his biological mother. Police found the teen's body in 2011 buried beneath a shed at a mobile home park in the Black Oak section of Gary. The headstone was dedicated at the cemetery this past Friday. ...

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Woman Falls from Second-Floor Window

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In Hammond, police say a 25-year-old woman suffered serious injuries after accidentally falling out of a second-floor window while trying to install an air-conditioner. Responders were called out to apartment on Robinhood lane around 8:30 Saturday night. The woman was taken to the Morton High School parking lot nearby, then airlifted to a Chicago-area hospital....

Read more: Woman Falls from Second-Floor Window

   

State Parks to Close for Deer Kills

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Twenty-one state parks in Indiana including Indiana Dunes will be temporarily closed to the general public two upcoming weekends for deer kills. The Indiana Department of Natural Resources says the kills November 18 and 19 and December 2nd and 3rd help control browsing by deer to help maintain habitat for plants and animals.
Information from Indiana DNR:
Select Indiana state parks will close temporarily to allow for controlled deer reductions in the coming weeks.
The dates for the temporary closings are Nov. 18 and 19, and Dec. 2 and 3.
The state parks affected are Brown County, Chain O’Lakes, Charlestown, Clifty Falls, Fort Harrison, Harmonie, Indiana Dunes, Lincoln, McCormick’s Creek, Ouabache, Pokagon, Potato Creek, Prophetstown, Shades, Shakamak, Spring Mill, Summit Lake, Tippecanoe, Turkey Run, Versailles, and Whitewater Memorial. These state parks will close to the general public the evening before each of the two efforts and reopen the morning after each two-day reduction.
Only individuals drawn last September and those listed on their applications may participate at Brown County, Chain O’Lakes, Charlestown, Clifty Falls, Harmonie, Lincoln, McCormick’s Creek, Ouabache, Pokagon, Potato Creek, Prophetstown, Shades, Shakamak, Summit Lake, Tippecanoe, Versailles and Whitewater Memorial. There will be no standby drawings at those parks.
For Fort Harrison (archery hunt) and Indiana Dunes, Spring Mill and Turkey Run (firearms hunts), a public standby drawing to fill spots left vacant will take place on property each morning of the reduction.
Indiana Dunes State Park will conduct daily standby drawings at 8 a.m. CST. Potential standby participants can apply on site between 7 and 7:45 a.m. CST but cannot enter the park before 7 a.m.
Turkey Run, Spring Mill, and Fort Harrison will conduct daily standby drawings at 8:30 a.m. EST. Potential standby participants can apply onsite between 7:30 a.m. and 8:15 a.m. EST but cannot enter the park before 7:30 a.m.
Eligibility for daily onsite standby drawings is limited to Indiana residents who are 18 years of age by Nov. 18, and have any valid license to take deer in Indiana. Indiana residents who possess an Indiana lifetime license to take deer are also eligible. Participants must wear a hunter orange hat or cap and vest, coat, jacket or coveralls at all times while on the property.
To participate in the standby drawings, individuals must present a photo ID and their valid filled or unfilled license to take deer. Applications can include up to three individuals. The number of participants drawn will be based on the number of unclaimed spots for each day; it is not a first-come, first-served process. The need for stand-in hunters tends to increase with each hunt day.
Questions about participating in the standby drawings should be directed to the property of interest.
DNR biologists evaluate which parks require a reduction each year based on habitat recovery and previous harvest rates at each park. The state parks are home to more than 32 state-endangered plants and numerous significant natural communities. The reductions help control browsing by deer to a level that helps maintain habitat throughout the state parks for all plants and animals.
Information on 2014 state park deer reductions, including online applications, will be available next summer at dnr.IN.gov/fishwild. The application deadline is usually the end of August.
A report on the 2012 reductions can be found at dnr.IN.gov/parklake/files/sp-DeerRMRR.pdf....

Read more: State Parks to Close for Deer Kills

   

Crown Point Boys Soccer Brings Home State Title

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The Crown Point boys soccer team took home the Class 2A state soccer title Saturday, defeating Avon in overtime 3-1. It was the second state championship in the past three years for the undefeated Bulldogs, who finished the season 21-0-1....

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