21 Area residents earn U of I Dean's List honors

The University of Illinois announced the names of the students who were recognized on the fall semester Dean's List last week. Twenty-one area residents currently studying at Illinois' flagship university made the prestigious academic list.

Three Ogden residents and 18 fellow Illini listing St. Joseph as their home city joined 7,440 students from around the world on the fall 2019 list from the Urbana-Champaign campus.

Students named to the UIUC Dean's List must complete coursework and grading to fall into the top 20% of a student’s college class or curriculum. Furthermore, eligible students must take a minimum of 14 credit hours for a letter grade. Pass or fail grading is not considered for the purpose class or curriculum rank for this academic award.

The list below does not include Dean's List honorees added after Jan. 27 or students who did not list their hometown as Royal, Ogden or St. Joseph.


Cody A. Ayers, Cody, Senior
Liberal Arts and Sciences Molecular and Cellular Biology

Carly Jane Frerichs, Senior
Applied Health Sciences - Major: Kinesiology

Emilee Lorren Sorensen, Junior, ACES - Major: Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications

St. Joseph

Emily Ann Bluhm, Sophomore
ACES - Major: Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences

Sarah Chahine, Freshman
Applied Health Sciences - Major: Community Health

Hailey Brihn Collum, Senior
Fine and Applied Arts - Major: Architectural Studies

Carson Danae Florey, Junior
Liberal Arts and Sciences - Major: Linguistics

Lauren Elizabeth Gherna, Junior
Liberal Arts and Sciences - Major: English

Evan Michael Hawkins, Junior
Media - Major: Advertising

Mason Ray Housenga, Junior
Liberal Arts and Sciences - Major: Physics

Ian Joseph Hulette, Senior
ACES - Major: Human Development and Family Studies

Riley Serena Knott, Junior
ACES - Major: Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications

Mira Nichole McLain, Junior
Liberal Arts and Sciences - Major: Integrative Biology

Casey J. Modglin, Senior
ACES - Major: Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences

Skylar Price, Sophomore
General Studies - Major: Undeclared

Abigail K. Schlueter, Freshman,
ACES - Major: Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications

Elizabeth Jo Schluter, Freshman
Liberal Arts and Sciences - Major: History

Rylee Mareka Sjuts, Freshman
General Studies - Major: Undeclared

Claire Elizabeth Smith, Junior
ACES - Major: Agricultural Communications

Ty Allen Stegall, Junior
Liberal Arts and Sciences - Major: Molecular and Cellular Biology

Macy Reigh Vallee, Junior
ACES - Major: Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications

Ten area residents earn degrees from the University of Illinois

Eight St. Joseph and two Ogden residents were among 3,187 graduates from the University of Illinois in December.


Stephanie Marie Costa, Master of Human Resources and Industrial Relations
Mathew Rafael Lopez-Cervantes, Master of Science in Recreation, Sport and Tourism

St. Joseph

Kelsey Lynne Clancy Dzwilewski, Doctor of Philosophy in Neuroscience
Luke Brennan Falls, Bachelor of Science in Information Systems and Information Technology
Rylan Housenga, Bachelor of Science in Liberal Arts and Sciences
Lindsey I. Kelso, Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Communications
Austin N. Luebchow, Bachelor of Science in Finance
Casey Modglin, Bachelor of Science in Agricultural and Consumer Economics
Rachel Eileen Mullen, Bachelor of Science in Crop Sciences
Jacob Pence, Bachelor of Science in Finance

First area Coronavirus case confirmed

The number of confirmed cases of the Coronavirus has risen to 33 in Champaign County. According to the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District, one of the newest positive diagnosis is located in the 61873 zip code.

Of the 33 active cases reported by the CUPHD, 15 of those individuals are currently hospitalized. Despite Governor J.B. Pritzker's shelter-in-place order and residents observing social distancing protocols, the number of confirmed cases have risen to 6,980 cases in Illinois.

Virologists and behavioral biologist models expect the pandemic to reach its peak over the next two to three weeks.

The latest data shows that adults between the ages of 31 and 40 make up nearly half of the total infected in the Champaign County.

While no deaths have been reported in the county, more than 140 COVID-19 related deaths have occurred in Illinois.

The website also list five individuals as recovered in the latest data from the public health agency.

Across Illinois as of April 1, the Illinois Department of Public Health says around 40,384 residents have been tested.

St. Joseph mayor encourages everyone to fill out census online

Today, is Census Day and if you haven't completed yours online or mailed it back yet today, it's time to get'r done.

Mayor Tami Fruhling-Voges has bet with a couple of area mayors and is enjoying a significant lead in the wager and she needs everyone's help in padding the village's numbers.

"I looked up the numbers for March 25th and I currently have bragging rights for St. Joseph with ours being a 42.8% response rate," said Fruhling-Voges. "Mahomet is at 37.3% and Savoy is at 30.0%."

The purpose of the census is to figure out how many seats each state receives in the U.S. House of Representatives. The federal government also uses the data to distributed more than $675 billion annually to states for various programs.

If a household does not response or the form is incomplete, someone from the Census Bureau will follow up either by phone or in person to get the missing or needed information.

She is encouraging members of the community who have not yet done their part to do so.

"While we're all stuck at home get those Census responses sent in!" she said.

You can fill out the form online today at https://my2020census.gov/. The online questionnaire takes about 15 minutes to complete. The online portal is the fast and secure way to help the village and state receive the funding it deserves.

Bond set for the accused in St. Joseph murder, victims' identities are released

Judge Tom Difanis set bond for Jonathon Perry, accused of killing his girlfriend Kimberly Coyne, age 54, and her daughter Blair Coyne, age 24, at $2.5 million earlier today.

Perry, who is 28 years old, is being held responsible for shooting both women early Monday morning in the home they shared located just north of Interstate 74 at 1600 N. and CR2200E. He is charged with four counts for each victim for at total of eight.

The accused was located at his parent's home in Homer by the deputies after his mother contacted dispatchers around 4:15am. She made the call after her son made statements that raised her concern about the well-being of his girlfriend and her daughter.

Deputies were simultaneously dispatched to the Homer and St. Joseph. Kimberly's body was found in the home while Blair's was located face down in the driveway both with gunshot wounds yet to be disclosed investigators. Weapons were reportedly found near both of the deceased.

At the time of his arrest Perry was wearing multiple pairs of pants and had an empty gun holster in the leg of one pair. When questioned where the guns were, he said the guns were "with the Devil and the Anti-Christ".

Perry, who was released from prison in July 2016 after serving about four years of an an eight year sentence for residential burglary, is scheduled to be back in court on April 16 for a probable cause hearing.

Two St. Joseph residents found dead, suspect in custody

Early this morning, Champaign County deputies arrested Jonathon Perry, of Homer, now held in custody at the Champaign County Correctional Center, on the preliminary charge murder after deputies performed a welfare check on a residence located on Shore Drive in St. Joseph.

While searching the property around 4:15am this morning, deputies found two deceased females whose identification is being withheld pending notification of the victims' families.

"Deputies were advised that an individual, later identified as Jonathon Perry, made statements which led the reporting person to believe the resident(s) had been injured and/or possibly killed," Sheriff's Office said in a release this morning.

Multiple first-degree murder charges are expected to be filed against Perry on Monday. If convicted of both murders, he faces a mandatory sentence of natural life behind bars.

In March of 2012, the Vermilion County Sheriff’s Department on Monday arrested Perry, then 20, and two other men on felony counts of burglary after residents throughout Sidell filed 10 separate car burglary reports. He was subsequently sentenced to an eight year prison term for his participation in a string of auto and residential thief.

Perry, at the age 17, was charged with burglary and possession of a stolen vehicle in 2009. Charges were dropped after the state crime lab due to the lack of physical evidence in those incidents as well as several alleged car fires in Homer and Sidney.

The Sheriff’s Office and Champaign County Coroner’s Office continue their investigation in the double homicide case. The two victims died from apparent gunshot wounds.

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