WJBD - Local News

WJBD Radio



Centralia Firemen quickly put out electrical fire at 12 unit apartment building at 320 South Cherry Friday afternoon. The building was ordered evacuated until electrical concerns with the building could be checked. Photo by Mitchell Schultheis.

A Centralia City Firefighter helps suck smoke out of an apartment building at 320 South Cherry following a Friday afternoon fire. Photo by Mitchell Schultheis.

Centralia City Firemen have ordered a 12 unit apartment building at 320 South Cherry not to be occupied until an electrician can check out electrical problems.   

Fire Captain John Lynch said the decision came Friday afternoon after the third electrical fire occurred in the building since September.   The blaze was quickly put out, with only a small amount of damage.  Lynch says the apartment building will not be allowed to be occupied again until an electrician provides certification there is no fire danger from the wiring or repairs are made.  

The Friday fire began in the exhaust fan of Apartment 1 and had spread through the attic along the electrical wires to an exhaust fan in Apartment 2.  No one was home in either apartment, but another resident smelled smoke and called the fire department.   Firemen forced open the doors to both apartment units to reach the fire that was confined to the attic area.  

Lynch says once the ceiling was opened up, flames from the fire were visible.  Only a small amount of water was used to knock down the fire, limiting damage to an estimated $5,000.  

There were no injuries.  

The Centralia Police Department assisted the fire department in evacuating the building.  The Red Cross was called to assist the occupants of the nine occupied units of the building.  

One additional shift of firefighters was called to help put out the fire.   The fire call came in at 3:49 Friday afternoon, with firemen on the scene about an hour and a half.   

The building is owned by Cecilia Ross of Centralia.  

In September one of the fires caused an estimated $20,000 damage after an electrical outlet where a refrigerator was plugged in caught fire in an unoccupied unit.  The other fire in September did not cause any significant damage.      

Kell Fire Chief Lonnie McDaneld says a rural Centralia woman was extremely fortunate an electrical fire inside the wall of her mobile home mostly extinguished itself instead of spreading Thanksgiving night.  

McDaneld says they were called to the Kay Crooks home at 1128 Myers Road after Crooks smelled smoke.  Kell Firemen peeled back the paneling and insulation on the living room wall where the  fire appeared to be located.  They found the smoldering fire that McDaneld says could have just as easily flared up and caused substantial damage to the mobile home.  

There was moderate fire damage to the living room area.  

Firemen were called to the home at 7:15 Thursday night and remained on the scene for about an hour.  

Centralia student Seth Lange was asked while battling cancer what he wished to have for Christmas.

It is not surprising, coming from Seth to know that all he wanted was a truck full of toys to give cancer patients in Cardinal Glennon Hospital in St. Louis.  Seth did not ask for anything for himself, but rather to see other people happy.  

Lange lost his battle with leukemia on August 27th, but his dream was not forgotten and the Centralia Student Council is doing their part in helping make that wish a reality asking the community to honor Seth's wish.  

Student Council President Caleb Shipley said he was inspired after a visit from Seth's mom.

"It was really inspiring to listen to her tell his story and how when he got one wish for Christmas all he wanted was a truck load of toys for the cancer patients at Cardinal Glennon.  I got with some of the teachers at the high school, some of the student council leaders and our FCA leaders, and we're doing the drive at the school for the next week or two.  But on Saturday we decided to open it  to the public at the basketball tournament," said Shipley.

The Student Council is asking for those attending the Centralia Tournament on Saturday to bring gift cards, cash, board or video games, dvd's, bikes, lego's, hats, sporting equipment, makeup, any new toy for ages up to 20 to help fill a truck that will be on hand and delivered later to Cardinal Glennon Hospital in St Louis.  They are asking that you do NOT bring stuffed animals.

Shipley added for every donation, you will be entered into a drawing to win a $50 Visa gift card.  

Shipley added, gone but not forgotten, Seth is an inspiration.

Health Career Job Fairs and Training Expos are planned in Centralia and Mt. Vernon.   They are being sponsored by SSM Health Good Samaritan Hospital in Mt. Vernon and SSM Health St. Mary's Hospital in Centralia.

The Fair and Expo in Centralia will be held this coming Monday, November 30th, from 1 to 7 pm at the Centralia Recreation Complex at 115 East Second in Centralia.  The Mt. Vernon event will be held from one to seven Monday, December 7th, at the Holiday Inn at 222 Potomac Boulevard.   

SSM Health Care officials say this is an opportunity for those that are interested in a health career to meet with local healthcare workforce development leaders face-to-face.   The event is co-sponsored by the South Central Illinois Area Health Education Center which develops educational pipeline programs to address development and retention of health care.  Representatives of Kaskaskia College, Rend Lake College, Frontier Community College, McKendree University, Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville as well as staff from Hamilton Memorial Hospital District and Clay County Hospital.  

There will not be any actual training on the day of the event, but attendees will be able to obtain information abut training programs.  It is recommended attendees come dressed professionally, bring their resume, and be prepared to interview with on-site recruiters and speak with education advisors.  Clinical and non-clinical positions will be discussed.

Interviews may be pre-scheduled by calling Kelli Stover at 618-899-10-52.

MARION, Ill. (AP) - Authorities in southern Illinois say foul play is not suspected in the death of a 22-year-old Murphysboro woman whose body was found by hunters in a national wildlife refuge.

The Southern Illinois in Carbondale reports an autopsy Friday by Dr. James Jacobi shows injuries to Jeannie Schuur's body were not a contributing factor. Jacobi says the preliminary cause of death indicated hypothermia, pending toxicology reports. 

The Williamson County Sheriff's Office says Schuur's body was found Thursday on land in the Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge by hunters.

Family members reported her missing on Monday after she was last seen two days earlier walking away from a friend's home.

Welcome to Our New Website

Same WJBD but with more content than ever before. We will have more features up and running in no time.

Follow Us At


This Site logo