61 Weapons Turned in Saturday at Gary's Gun Buyback

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gary gun buyback
(Photo Courtesy of the City of Gary)
A total of 61 weapons, 42 handguns and 19 rifles, were turned in on Saturday in Gary, at their second gun buyback event this year. Chelsea Whittington, Director of Communications for the City of Gary, says this was the fourth such gun buyback since Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson's administration started in 2012, and the hope is to have one or two more by the end of this year. Whittington called the event a success, not only because guns were taken off the streets, but also because it gave the city an opportunity to partner with local churches to raise awareness about the efforts of the Gary Police Department. She says the event also lets potential criminals know the City of Gary is partnering with the eyes and ears of the community, to work together, to make the city safer.
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Read more: 61 Weapons Turned in Saturday at Gary's Gun Buyback


Allegiant to End Service at Gary/Chicago Airport on 8/10

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Allegiant airline say it will end service at the Gary/Chicago International Airport on August 10th. The Times reports Allegiant is severing their ties because they were not seeing a strong demand in the market and they have a responsibility to use their resources where they'll be most successful. According to the article, airport officials say the number of passengers on flights consistently exceeded the airline's minimum requirements.
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Read more: Allegiant to End Service at Gary/Chicago Airport on 8/10


Lake Co Coroner's Office Investigating Death of Gary Man

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The Lake County Coroner's Office reports the manner of death is pending for a 54 year old Gary man. The Coroner's Office says just before 12:30am Sunday they were dispatched to Methodist Lake Hospital where the deceased, whose name has not yet been released, was identified. Authorities report no visible trauma on the man, but stated the death did occur at the deceased man's residence, in the 62-hundred block of Hemlock Street, in Gary. No further information is available at this time.
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Read more: Lake Co Coroner's Office Investigating Death of Gary Man


US Marshals Fugitive of the Week: Eric Martel Johnson

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Johnson Eric
(Photo Courtesy of the US Marshals Service)
A 19 year old man wanted for felony attempted murder with a deadly weapon by the Lake County Sheriff's Department is this week's “Fugitive of the Week” by the U-S Marshals Service, Great Lakes Task Force. Eric Martel Johnson was last known to reside in the 21-hundred block of Delaware Street in Gary, and is also wanted by authorities for battery, aggravated battery, and battery causing serious bodily injury, all of which are felony charges. Eric Johnson is described as a black male, 5'6'', weighing 145 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. Anyone with information on Eric Johnson's whereabouts may contact task force investigators by calling toll-free (888) 805-6119 or by texting “capture” to Tip411 (847411).  All tipsters will remain anonymous.
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Read more: US Marshals Fugitive of the Week: Eric Martel Johnson


Supreme Court Stays Out of IN Planned Parenthood Funding

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Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller says his office in considering what “remaining legal avenues” are available after the US Supreme Court today announced it would not hear Indiana's appeal in a legal challenge to a state law that disqualifies abortion providers from being Medicaid providers. The Supreme Court let stand lower court rulings blocking enforcement of the law since shortly after its passage by the 2011 Legislature. The nation’s highest court announced today it declined to accept the case, so Zoeller says Planned Parenthood of Indiana can continue to collect Medicaid funding as it continues to offer abortion services.
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Read more: Supreme Court Stays Out of IN Planned Parenthood Funding


Indiana State Trooper Saves Two-Year-Old

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In Lake Station, Indiana State Police Senior Trooper Dan Avitia helped save a two-year old Valparaiso girl Memorial Day afternoon. Around 3:30 pm, Avitia, a fourteen-year veteran,was in the area of I-80 west bound just west of Central Avenue, when a dispatch came out about a child having a medical emergency. Avitia located the SUV parked on the inner shoulder. Police say the child had bluish tinged lips, and not breathing; Avitia revived the child who was taken to a local hospital for observation. The mother said her daughter had been on medication for an illness. The girl was given two teddy bears by the Indiana State Police. These bears are given to children to comfort them if they become involved in a stressful situation.

Read more: Indiana State Trooper Saves Two-Year-Old


Region Population Changes

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growing cities 2th
US citiies with largest numeric population increase [courtesy US Census Bureau]
New data from the US Census Bureau show cities and towns across the Region losing population over the past two years, with some exceptions, including Crown Point and St. John in Lake County … Valparaiso, Chesterton and Kouts in Porter County, and Westville in La Porte County. Eight of the 15 fastest-growing large U.S. cities and towns for the year ending July 1, 2012 were in Texas, according to new population estimates, and the Lone Star State also stood out in terms of the size of population growth, with five of the 10 cities and towns that added the most people over the year.

New York continued to be the nation's most populous city by a wide margin, with 8.3 million residents in 2012, followed by Los Angeles and Chicago, and the list of 15 most populous cities has remained unchanged since last year; however, the list's order has changed slightly, including Indianapolis shifting downward a spot from twelfvth to thirteenth, as Austin Texas moved up, also pushing Jacksonville, Florida, down on the list along with Indy. Indianapolis with about 835-thousand people.
State city/town lists: 

Read more: Region Population Changes


Teaching Garden to Valpo

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The American Heart Association’s Teaching Garden will come to Parkview Elementary School in Valparaiso thanks to support from Methodist Hospitals. The garden is meant to help students understand the importance of healthy eating habits, is being unveiled today [Tuesday]. Teaching Gardens are real-life laboratories where students learn how to plant seeds, nurture growing plants and harvest food.

Read more: Teaching Garden to Valpo


Local Discussion on Prayers at Govt Mtgs

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The US Supreme Court is taking up the issue of prayer at government meetings, and the topic is being discussed here in the Region. In Hammond, where city council meetings generally start with a prayer, Mayor Thomas McDermott Jr. says he has brought the matter to the attention of council members, quoted in the Times recently as saying he's concerned about the city possibly facing a lawsuit. Other communities including Merrillville and Portage have also opened meetings with prayers.

Read more: Local Discussion on Prayers at Govt Mtgs


Limited Tickets for New Game

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The Hoosier Lottery is kicking off the summer season with a new game. Sales begin today (Tues May 28 ) for the Inependence Day Millionaire Raffle and are open to the first 300,000 players, 18 or older, to purchase a ticket. Tickets will remain on sale until all tickets are sold - or until July 4, whichever comes first. Winning numbers for the $1 million grand prize, 10 $10,000 prizes and 2,000 $100 prizes will be announced July 5.

Read more: Limited Tickets for New Game


Purdue Approves WL Tuition Freeze

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The summer season just started, but when college starts up again this fall, Purdue President Mitch Daniels says "Thousands of West Lafayette students will pay less for their Purdue education next year than they did last year.” Purdue University trustees recently approved frozen tuition and cut costs for West Lafayette students for the 2013-14 and 2014-15 academic years. Board members also approved a 2 percent tuition and fee increase at Purdue's three regional campuses, which include campuses in Hammond and Westville, for each of the next two years.

Read more: Purdue Approves WL Tuition Freeze


Hobart ZIP Code Issue Ongoing

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Hobart continues to try and resolve a ZIP code issue. About twenty years ago, the city annexed part of Ross Township that includes Westfield Southlake mall, but that area still has a Merrillville ZIP code. A letter was recently sent to the US Postal Service in Washington. Similar requests have been made in the past, by previous city officials. The mayor's assistant tells the Times the ZIP code issue has caused problems in the past, including a new gas station on U.S. 30 that ended up having a permit issued by Merrillville instead of Hobart.

Read more: Hobart ZIP Code Issue Ongoing


Gov Pence to Speak at Dedication

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Indiana Governor Mike Pence joined hundreds of people at the 145th Annual Memorial Day ceremony at Crown Hill National Cemetery in Indianapolis.   Today the Governor Mike Pence will offer remarks at the dedication of the Sammy Davis Exhibit at the Indiana War Memorial Museum today (Tue May 28). Indiana's only living Medal of Honor recipient Sammy Davis will be in attendance, as well as former Indiana Governors Joe Kernan and Edgar Whitcomb. [3 pm EDT]

Read more: Gov Pence to Speak at Dedication


Region Soldier Honored

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Indiana Senator Joe Donnelly today released the following statement to honor the Hoosier soldiers who have given the ultimate sacrifice to their country while protecting the freedoms of our nation.
“This Memorial Day, I join all Americans as we celebrate the lives of those who gave the ultimate sacrifice while fighting for the many freedoms we enjoy in our great nation. Our Armed Forces are filled with brave men and women from across the country, but today I especially honor those from our great state of Indiana.
"They are our family, friends, and neighbors who have chosen to serve at any time, at any place. It’s a sacrifice beyond imagination, but they serve because of their belief in American values and freedoms.  We honor the Hoosiers who we have lost in the past year while serving in Afghanistan.
·         Marine Sgt. Bradley W. Atwell from Kokomo, who died after defending a breach at Camp Bastion.
·         Army Sgt. Kyle B. Osborn of Lafayette, who succumbed to wounds caused by small-arms and rocket-propelled grenade fire.
·         Marine Lance Cpl. Alec R. Terwiske of Dubois, who lost his life following combat operations in Helmand.
·         Army Spc. Sergio E. Perez, Jr. from Crown Point, who died from injuries following a rocket-propelled grenade explosion to his vehicle.
·         Army Spc. Nicholas A. Taylor of Berne, who lost his life when the armored vehicle he was driving was hit by a rocket-propelled grenade.
·         Marine Lance Cpl. Hunter D. Hogan from Norman, who died while conducting combat operations in the Helmand province.
·         Marine Lance Cpl Joshua E. Witsman of Covington, who died while supporting combat operations in Helmand.
"We also acknowledge those servicemembers who we have lost to suicide. Suicide is a shadow killer, but the service of these soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines is still honorable, and should be honored.
"Forever, we are in debt to all the men and women from our state who lost their lives in combat and in all other conflicts. We will always owe our gratitude to our fallen heroes whose sacrifices grant us our freedoms and remind us every day that as Americans, we will always fight for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

Read more: Region Soldier Honored


NW Ind Motorcyclist Killed in DC Crash

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Police in Washington DC were investigating a crash that claimed the life of a northwest Indiana man. Reports say 66-year-old George Hillis from the Lake Village area in Newton County was pronounced dead at a hospital after the motorcycle he was riding was involved in a collision with a car Friday night. Motorcyclists from around the Region and the country are in the nation's capitol this weekend for the annual Rolling Thunder ride to DC and tribute to war veterans. The Times says the crash occurred about two hours after a candlelight vigil at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, and that the man was in the city for the Rolling Thunder motorcycle run.

Read more: NW Ind Motorcyclist Killed in DC Crash


Memorial Day: Honoring America's Veterans

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Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who died in service to their country.
The holiday was officially proclaimed in 1868 to honor Union and Confederate soldiers and was expanded after World War I to honor those who died in all wars.
Today, Memorial Day honors over one million men and women who have died in military service since the Civil War.
The infographic at this link compiles statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau and Department of Defense to honor our men and women who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces.
[Information courtesy of the US Census Bureau]

Read more: Memorial Day: Honoring America's Veterans


E-Book Agreement Announced

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Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller has announced the resolution of a multistate antitrust investigation against another major U.S. book publisher for price-fixing and collusion in the electronic book (E-book) market.  Indiana, along with the other states, reached an agreement with Penguin Group (USA) Inc. to settle allegations that Penguin colluded with other major publishers and Apple Inc. to manipulate prices in the E-book market.  “If approved, this agreement means Indiana’s consumers who purchased E-books published by Penguin Group will receive $1.15 million in total refunds via their E-book accounts,” Zoeller said. “Consumers also stand to benefit from restored competitiveness within the E-book marketplace.” The agreement with Penguin must be approved by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. When finalized, Zoeller says the agreement with Penguin will grant E-book retailers greater freedom to reduce the prices of their E-book titles
Indiana has previously settled with four other publishers: Hachette Book Group Inc., HarperCollins Publishers L.L.C., Simon & Schuster Inc., and Holtzbrinck Publishers LLC d/b/a Macmillan for allegations relating to the same conduct, Zoeller said, adding that Indiana’s antitrust action based on the same allegations against Apple Inc. remains pending with trial scheduled in June 2013.

Read more: E-Book Agreement Announced


Bus Line Needs Bigger Site

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Valparaiso's ChicaGo Dash is going to need more space. The city's Board of Works has approved a contract to identify possible sites for a parking lot and transportation station to accommodate the popular commuter bus service to Chicago. The service began with about 110 spaces in the lot on Campbell Street right off Lincolnway, and since then the city has added parking on Linconway and Indiana Avenue.

Read more: Bus Line Needs Bigger Site


Man Dead After Hobart Fire

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A Hobart man is dead after fire breaks out at his home. Lake County Coroners officials say 31-year-old Eric Consadine of the 100 block of East Rand Street in Hobart was pronounced dead at St. Mary Medical Center Sunday morning. Coroners officials say the man had no visible injuries and cause of death is pending investigation. Hobart fire crews were dispatched around 5:30 Sunday morning.

Read more: Man Dead After Hobart Fire


Memorial Day Services

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Memorial Day Remembrances Around the Region include:
Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville:
May 27 - Monday at 10:00 a.m. the following will be shared:
Catholic Service
St. Sava Serbian Orthodox Service
First Presbyterian Church of Merrillville Service
May 27 - Monday at 11:45 ....SS Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Service
May 27 - Monday at 12:30 ... Battle of the Bulge Memorial Ceremony

Crown Point: Memorial Day Parade will be Monday, May 27 at 10:30am. The parade will begin at Joliet/West St to Main Street ending on Wells Street at the Maplewood Cemetery. The Ceremony will begin there at 11am.
Gary Memorial Day parade – May 27 – 10:00a.m.
Griffith War Memorial Event --10:00 AM-10:45 AM: at Griffith War Memorial, Broad and Oak Streets

Hammond Mohawks Memorial Day Program, St. Casimir, 4340 Johnson Avenue
Hobart Memorial Day Ceremony- May 27 – Eight veterans organizations will be gathering at the Hobart Doughboy, across from Burns Funeral Home, at 11:00 am to give tribute to all of our fallen troops from Hobart, Indiana. The eight organizations are The American Legion, The Sons of the American Legion (SAL), Marine Corps League (MCL), MCL Auxiliary, American Veterans Motorcycle Riders Chapter 13, V.F.W., V.F.W. Auxiliary, V.F.W. Mens Auxiliary. The names on the Doughboy statue that will be read are from WW1, WW2, Vietnam War, Korean War, and the Global War on Terrorism. All eight organizations will be presenting a wreath in honor of our fallen troops. The Marine Corps League Honor Guard will be firing a volley of three rounds followed by the playing of taps. The conclusion will be a closing prayer.
Kouts: Kouts will be having a Memorial Day Parade, sponsored by the Kouts American Legion Post 301. The parade will kick off at 10:00 A.M. on Monday May 27th. It will proceed from the High School through town to the intersection at Rt. 8. There will also be a Memorial Service at the cemetery on Rt. 8 at approximately 10:45 A.M. All are welcome.
Lake County Memorial Day Program, 2:30 pm, gathering sponsored by Lake County Parks at the Vietnam Veterans War Memorial in Leroy, Stoney Run County Park 142nd Avenue & Union Street
Porter: Hawthorne Park on Monday, May 27th at 1:00pm to help honor our veterans for Memorial Day. In addition to their annual services this year they will be dedicating the James Butz Honorary Parkway in memory of US Army Spc James Butz.  Officials say the 21-year-old combat medic from Porter was killed in September 2011, by an improvised explosive device when he rushed to the aid of two wounded troop members, who also died in the attack in Afghanistan.

Read more: Memorial Day Services


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Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team


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