Teams forming for annual Bridge Walk

LivingWell Cancer Resource Center’s annual Bridge Walk is scheduled for Saturday, May 16, at Fabyan Park on the Island.

The 5K walk along the Fox River is to help raise funds and awareness for LivingWell Cancer Resource Center. Proceeds from the walk will be used to support the more than 30 free programs and services LivingWell offers to cancer patients, cancer survivors and their loved ones.

There will also be a special 10-Step Celebration Walk for anyone with a cancer diagnosis to symbolize that cancer does not define who they are. Anyone unable to walk in the 5K because of the effects of cancer are welcome to join in the Celebration Walk. This special event allows all those who wish to take part in this special day to do so at their own comfort level.

If you are interested in participating on a team, starting your own team, or for more information, call Sue Mielke at (630) 262-1111, or All community members are welcome to participate.

Last year, the Bridge Walk had nearly 1,100 walkers, raising more than $180,000. Each participant had a story to share about how cancer affected their life and their loved ones. People walked in honor or in memory of their mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers and children, as well as friends, neighbors and coworkers. LivingWell participants and cancer survivors participating in the Bridge Walk ranged in age from 6 months to 82 years young.

Senator to address environmental, energy issues

Sen. Chris Lauzen will address environmental and energy issues at the Batavia Public Library Monday, March 9, at 7 p.m. The public is invited.

Sponsored by the Sierra Club, this informal town hall type gathering gives the public a chance to discuss important issues with the Illinois Republican senator.

Sen. Lauzen will present a short speech followed by an open exchange with the audience. The floor will be open to any environmental topic, including alternative energy, global warming, clean air and water, wildlife and park management. Coffee and refreshments will be served. For more information, call (630) 466-1808.

Crisis Line offers operator training opportunities

The Crisis Line of the Fox Valley, a program of the Association for Individual Development, is experiencing high call volumes.

In response to this need, the organization is actively searching for potential candidates to handle calls.

A free, nine-week Crisis Line Training is being offered, beginning Thursday, March 5, from 6 to 9 p.m. at 1230 N. Highland Ave., Aurora. Students will be trained to handle a broad spectrum of calls, ranging from persons that are isolated and lonely to emergencies requiring crisis intervention.

Topics covered during this training include, communication skills, crisis intervention, suicide, mental illness, domestic violence, sexual assault, mandated reporting and community resources.

For questions or to register, call Cheryl at (630) 966-4304.

Denis Zec

Denis Zec, 34, of Aurora passed away on Sunday March 1, 2009, at Rush-Copley Hospital. He was born July 12, 1974, in Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Denis was employed at Rich Harvest Farms for eight years, and following that, he was associated with White Eagle for two years. He had a big heart and loved people. Denis also loved music and dancing.

Denis is survived by his parents, Fadil and Jozica Zec and a brother, Zlatko Zec.

A funeral mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. on Thursday March 5, at The Healy Chapel, 370 Division Dr. Sugar Grove, with Fr. Robert Jones officiating. Interment will be at Sugar Grove Cemetery. Visitation was Wednesday March 4, at the funeral home. A liturgical wake service was conducted at 8 p.m.

For further information, call (630) 466-1330 or visit to leave a condolence.

Linaya Grace Arroyo

Linaya Grace Arroyo was born into heaven on Thursday, Feb. 26, 2009, at Delnor Hospital in Geneva. Though she was not destined to see this world, Linaya now breathes heavenly air and lives among the angels who watch over her parents, Alfred and Katrina, who were specially chosen to love her as only a mother and father could.

From the moment that Linaya’s spirit captured their hearts, Alfred and Katrina began making plans and having dreams for the life they were bringing into this world. In just 37 short weeks, Alfred and Katrina had planned years into the future of what their lives would be like. In only mere moments, those loving plans became lasting memories.

Linaya will live on forever in that special part of their hearts that is only for her. She now leaves her loving parents, Alfred and Katrina Arroyo of Aurora; her maternal grandparents, Eugene and Christina Ewbank; her paternal grandparents, Humberto and Luz Arroyo; her maternal great-grandparents, Richard and Edith Ewbank, as well as Vita Potter; her paternal great-grandparents, Armando and Maria Morales, as well as Isabel Arroyo and Rafaela Burciaga; many aunts, uncles, cousins and a “family” of friends who were anxious for her arrival.

Friends called on Tuesday, March 3, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St. Elburn. A service to celebrate her memory followed visitation. The Rev. Fr. Robert Camacho, pastor of Sacred Heart Catholic Church of Aurora and Rev. Dick Watts, chaplain of Delnor Hospital, Geneva, co-officiated.

A memorial has been established in her name to benefit in part the rebuilding fund of Sacred Heart Catholic Church. Checks may be made to the “Linaya Grace Arroyo Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119. Tributes and memories may also be forwarded to the family at the same address or through

St. Gall prepares for annual St. Patrick’s Day Dinner

Sunday, March 15, will mark the 126th anniversary of the St. Patrick’s celebration at St. Gall Parish in Elburn.

The annual tradition, sponsored by the St. Gall Women’s Altar and Rosary Society, begins with lots of planning and more than 500 volunteers. Jobs including servers, bakers, carvers, decorators, potato peelers and the popular clean-up crew bring this parish community together to create quite a feast for their guests.

Last year, St. Gall volunteers served approximately 1,000 guests to either a sit-down family style feast at the church hall or carry-out dinners at the American Legion on Route 47.

The feast, consisting of home-cooked turkey, gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, corn, green beans, coleslaw, cranberry sauce, rolls, pie, coffee and milk, will be held this year on Sunday, March 15, between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Sit-down service will be at the church hall at 120 W. Shannon St., and carry-outs will be available at the Elburn American Legion Hall-both located on Route 47 in downtown Elburn. Cost is $4 for children ages six-12, $7 for seniors and $10 for adults. Carry-outs are $8. For additional information, contact the St. Gall Parish Office at (630) 365-6030.

Kaneville UMC hosts chili supper

Kaneville UMC Men’s Club will host its annual chili supper on Saturday, March 14, from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at the Kaneville United Methodist Church, 46W764 Main St. in Kaneville.

The supper will be held in the basement of the church; the elevator is located in the back of church.

There will be more than 20 kinds of chili, from mild to wild. Carry-outs and hot dogs are also available. Live country and bluegrass music will be provided by The Willard’s. A free will offering will be taken. For more information, call the church at (630) 557-2353.

Author to speak at Sugar Grove UMC

Diane Mayer Christiansen, author of the young adult fantasy novel “Switcher,” will speak at the Sugar Grove United Methodist Church, 176 Main St., on Monday, March 9, at 7 p.m.

Mayer Christiansen is a strong advocate for children struggling with dyslexia. The undercurrent theme of her first novel is “Being different is just fine. In fact, it’s amazing.”

The public is invited to meet Diane and hear her talk about her personal struggle with the neurological disorder dyslexia, and the correlation between her feelings of not belonging with those of Samantha, the heroine of the book. She will also address the writing process and the road to publication.

For more information, call the church office at (630) 466-4501.

Virgil church offers Lenten fish fries

Saints Peter and Paul Church, 5N939 Meredith Road in Virgil, will host Lenten fish fries on Fridays, March 6 to April 3, from 5 to 8 p.m.

Cost is $9.50 ($11 for shrimp) for adults and $4 ($6 for shrimp) for children ages 5 to 10. There is no cost for children under the age of 5. Carry-out is available.

The menu consists of fried perch, baked cod, french fries, baked potato, vegetable, coleslaw, applesauce, dinner rolls, dessert, coffee or milk. Beer and pop are available at an extra charge. Shrimp and mac and cheese can be added to the regular buffet for an extra charge.

For more information or to place a carry-out order, call (630) 365-6618.

A march for babies

by Gwen Allen
In the spring of 2008, more than 600 people from all over Illinois converged in St. Charles and raised more than $100,000 for babies, setting the bar high for future volunteers.

Lena Clement, Community Director of March of Dimes, said she anticipates another successful event this year with a goal of $112,000 to be raised at the April 26 March for Babies in St. Charles.

March of Dimes is a not-for-profit organization with a mission to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth (birth prior to 37 weeks gestation) and infant mortality (with preterm birth the leading cause of death in the first month of life in the US). Babies who survive a premature birth are also at risk and face the possibility of serious lifelong health problems, including learning disabilities, cerebral palsy and other chronic conditions including asthma. Even infants born just a few weeks too soon have a greater risk of breathing problems, feeding difficulties, temperature instability (hypothermia), jaundice and delayed brain development.

Clement said in Illinois, 90 percent of the money raised goes directly to their cause of research and prevention while only 10 percent goes to funding administration.

“We have a high need in this area, because we give millions to local hospitals and research institutions,” Clement said. “This is important, because one in eight babies are born premature, even when the mother does everything right. So we are trying to find out why and keep moms pregnant as long as possible.”

A goal held dear by the volunteers who will walk six miles is to help raise awareness and money for more research. She said most participants would have either been affected directly or indirectly by a pre-term birth.

“It’s really an exciting day when people come together to raise money for babies,” Clement said. “A majority of the people involved are families, it’s really a family oriented event with children and pets on the walk too.”

Along with the families, she said there are also corporate sponsors who continue to show reliable support.

“Central DuPage Hospital is one of our largest supporters, and they even doubled their donation for 2009, which in this economy is pretty amazing,” Clement said. “Another large supporter is Farmers Insurance, so they’ll both be there and they have been for years.”

Amy Burgess, the clinical manager of Labor and Delivery for Central Dupage Hospital, helps organize the hospital’s walking team and said the relationship with March of Dimes is reciprocal.

“We are active every year, because our nurses support their mission,” Burgess said. “We have a level three NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) so we have seen March of Dimes directly help our families and babies.”

With a mission of improving the health of babies, she said the March of Dimes is, in essence, helping the hospital with its mission “that we live everyday.”

“This (March for Babies) is really a nursing and staff initiative for us, no one has told us that we have to do it,” Burgess said. “There is a lot of excitement around it, we have a passion for it because it’s (the March of Dimes mission) a shared vision. We hope to have a big presence at this years walk.”

For the latest resources and information, visit or

Local fundraising events

Fox Valley
Sunday, April 26
Pottawatomie Park
8 North Ave., St. Charles, IL
Walk distance: 6.2 miles
Registration time: 8 a.m.
Start time: 9 a.m.
Chapter: Greater Chicago Division
(312) 435-4007

Saturday, April 25
1403 Sycamore Road, DeKalb, IL
Walk distance: 3.7 miles
Registration time: 9 a.m.
Start time: 10 a.m.
Chapter: Northern Illinois Division
(815) 397-0097

How to help

Educate and advocate
• Spread the word about the mission
• Call, write or visit your
public officials
• Community education activities
• Projects to help NICU families

• March of Dimes March for Babies
• Other events with your Chapter

Volunteer virtually
• Send e-mails or e-cards
• Post a banner or start a blog
• Visit

Time and talent
• Offer your professional
skills pro-bono
• Make calls from your home or office
• Administrative help in your
chapter office

Samuel Lawrence Vanatta

Ben and Lisa Vanatta of Elburn are happy to announce the birth of their son, Samuel Lawrence, who was born Jan. 15, 2009, at Rush Copley Medical Center in Aurora. He weighed 6 pounds, 15 ounces, and was 18 inches long.

The proud grandparents are Doug and Mary Stolp of North Aurora, Larry and Yvonne Plansky of Chicago, and William and Jacque Vanatta of Aurora.

Local students named to Augustana College fall term Dean’s List

Sara Michelle Bihner, Matthew Peter Bowman, April J. Runde, Amanda N. Lindoo and Mary Ellise Rhoades of Elburn, and Tara M. Czepiel and Elizabeth A. Shollenberger of Sugar Grove, have been named to the Dean’s List at Augustana College for the 2008 fall term. Students who have earned this academic honor have maintained a grade point average of 3.5 or higher on a four-point scale for courses taken during the 2008 fall term.

Shumaker named to dean’s list

Megan Shumaker has received recognition on the National Dean’s List for the fall semester of 2008-09 academic year at Indiana Wesleyan University. Students must obtain a 3.5 grade point average on a 4.0 scale, and carry at least 12 credit hours for the semester.

Shumaker is a 2008 Kaneland High School graduate.

Sophia Noelle Rosati

Christopher and Jennifer Rosati of Elburn are happy to announce the birth of their daughter, Sophia Noelle, who was born Dec. 18, 2008, at Delnor-Community Hospital in Geneva. She weighed 7 pounds, 10 ounces, and was 19.5 inches long.

The proud grandparents are Gene and the late Joanne Capes of Elburn and Dennis and Patricia Rosy of Itasca, Ill.

Sophia was welcomed by her 6-year-old sister, Grace, and her 3-year-old brother, Rocco.

Paige Elizabeth Fair

Jason and Becky Fair of Elburn are happy to announce the birth of their daughter, Paige Elizabeth, who was born Jan 19, 2009, at Delnor-Community Hospital in Geneva. She weighed 8 pounds, 4 ounces and was 20 inches long.
The proud grandparents are Dennis Rubeck of Elburn, Robert and Patricia Easterling of Peoria, Ill., and Scott and Chris Fair of Rochelle, Ill.
Paige is welcomed by sisters Olivia, 5, and Kate, 2.