Tag Archives: Wiley Overley

Population growth means new police commission for Elburn

Photo: Wayne Beyerhof, Judy Van Bogaert, and Wiley Overley are sworn in as the new Elburn police commission. Courtesy Photo

by Sandy Kaczmarski
ELBURN—Three Elburn residents were named as the village’s new police commission, now that the village has more than 5,000 residents; 5,602 to be exact, according to the 2010 Census.

Wiley Overley, Judy Van Bogaert and Wayne Byerhof were sworn in as the new commission, after being appointed by Village President Dave Anderson.

Illinois state law requires the establishment of a police commission when the population exceeds the 5,000 mark for municipalities with an existing police department.

The commissioners were appointed by Village President Dave Anderson, who said there were enough applicants to make a decision.

“We had three people who were top of the line, and those are the three we felt should have that position,” he said.

Police Chief Steve Smith welcomed the addition of a new police commission to help him in his job.

“They will be the ones to ensure a proper process for hiring and any major disciplinary action that is taken (against police officers),” he said. “The standardization of how everything is done will be nothing but a benefit for the village and the Police Department.”

Smith said the commission will help ensure fewer mistakes in hiring or discipline by having somebody else take an unbiased look at everything, of which Anderson was in agreement.

“It’s not left to one person to discipline or hire,” Smith said.

Each of the appointees has a history of community service. Van Bogaert, who is a bookkeeper at Kaneland, has volunteered through the Lions for Elburn Day. Byerhof was on the police force for 52 years and also served as village treasurer. Overley is a long-time member of the Elburn American Legion Post 630.

Commissioners receive a $1,000-per-year stipend. The first Elburn Police Commission meeting is Thursday, July 28, at 7 p.m. at the Village Hall.

John Stewart revs up for Vets Day

by Martha Quetsch
ELBURN—John Stewart Elementary School students are going all out for American veterans this month. They have been busy writing thank-you cards to U.S. servicemen, composing poems about the military, and filling showcases with memorabilia from family members who served in the armed forces.

“Every grade is involved,” said Bonnie Whildin, John Stewart art teacher and a coordinator of the events.

The hallways are draped in red, white and blue, and showcases display items that students have gathered including medals from relatives who were soldiers.

On Thursday, Nov. 11, the school will culminate these activities with a flag-raising in the morning, with all 650 students each waving miniature U.S. flags. Following the day’s kickoff will be local veterans’ visits to classrooms throughout the day and an assembly between 2:45 and 3:15 p.m. During the assembly, students will read the letters, and the Kaneland Middle School musical ensemble will play patriotic numbers including “Taps.”

Also during the afternoon ceremony, one of Whildin’s relatives, U.S. Navy Seal William Bishop, will speak about his military experiences.

Elburn American Legion Post 630 Commander Wiley Overley is one of the local servicemen who will speak in a classroom during the day. He admires what the students have done this month to acknowledge U.S. servicemen.

“It’s really a big deal for them,” Overley said.

‘Taps’ was Conley’s contribution to Legion

Elburn American Legion Veterans Day Parade and Celebration
11 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 11
Parade steps off from the American Legion Hall, 112 N. Main St. and marches to Veterans Park on East North Street,
for a Color Guard ceremony near the military tank.
The public is invited to participate.

Photo: Bruce Conley chats with a youngster before the 2007 Elburn Veteran’s Day celebration. This year, Elburn Legion Post 630 will celebrate Veteran’s Day without Conley, on Nov. 11 at 11 a.m. A trumpet with a device that automatically plays “Taps” will be used. File Photo

by Martha Quetsch
ELBURN—The playing of “Taps” is a longstanding tradition at many military events, including Veterans Day celebrations. In Elburn, longtime village resident Bruce Conley did the honors on his trumpet for many years, just before each annual American Legion parade downtown.

However, since Conley’s recent passing, the event no longer will feature his rendition of the soulful tribute to our nation’s servicemen.

Currently lacking another trumpeter, the local Legion came up with a creative way it could offer the familiar tune for parade-goers on Veterans Day and at other events, said the organization’s president Wiley Overley.

The Legion acquired a trumpet that has a device inside that makes it automatically play “Taps.”

“Since we lost Bruce, we do that,” Overley said.

The version the instrument plays is the same as the one military trumpeters play at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington D.C. for U.S. soldiers’ funerals.

Conley played “Taps” not only for the annual Veterans Day celebration in Elburn, but for other local Legion events including veterans’ funerals.

“He was always available for us, always gracious,” Overley said.

Legion faces financial crunch from rent loss

by Martha Quetsch
Elburn—American Legion Post 630 officials said their organization will be looking for another permanent tenant for the second-floor of its Elburn building, at 112 N. Main St., now that the village is terminating its lease of the space.

Before the village of Elburn began leasing most of the second-floor of the Legion Hall for the Building Department in 2005, the Legion rented the space occasionally to temporary occupants. However, that was not profitable, Legion member Norbert Lund said.

“We were looking for a more permanent tenant,” Lund said.

Legion Commander Wiley Overley said the result of the village’s termination of the lease will be a financial crunch for the Legion.

“What this will do is put us into a negative cash flow situation until we can rectify it,” Overley said.

The Legion will discuss marketing strategies for the rental space during its executive Committee Meeting Monday, Aug. 10.

Legion members also will talk about other ways the organization can cope financially with the reduction in revenue caused by the lack of rent from the village.

“We’ll live with it one way or another,” Lund said.

Lund said the Legion was able to get through the more than five-year period the space was vacant after its former renter, the public library, moved to its new space on North Street.

Eventually, if the Legion does not find a new tenant, it would have to liquidate the property, Overley said.

“But I don’t think that would be in the near future,” Overley said.

To cope with the financial loss from the lease termination, the Legion will look at ways to cut expenses during the coming months for the Legion.

“We’re going to have to suck it up just like everybody else,” Overley said.

The Legion owns its building. It uses its revenue, primarily from fundraising, to donate to veterans and community organizations, and to pay property taxes and operations expenses. He said the Legion receives some income from past investments, but that revenue “has taken a hit,” he said.