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Region in brief: Teacher’s funeral will be in Montana

Fri., Nov. 27, 2009

The funeral for a popular choir teacher at Coeur d’Alene’s Lake City High School will be Saturday in Libby, Mont. The service for Lacie Hedahl, 39, is scheduled for 1 p.m. at Christ Lutheran Church.

Also, a public memorial service will be held Monday at 6 p.m. in the Lake City school auditorium.

Hedahl died Sunday night, reportedly of natural causes. She had taught at the school for 10 years.

Hedahl attended high school in Libby, where she played flute in band. She went on to the University of Idaho to study music, earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

Her choirs and her students garnered numerous awards over the years at music festivals and at state competitions.

Paper company president named

Kevin Rasler will become president of Inland Empire Paper Co. effective Jan. 1. He will succeed Wayne Andresen, who will retire Dec. 31 after 11 years as president and 30 years with the company.

Rasler joined Inland Empire Paper as a chemical engineer in 1985 and served as production manager for 13 years. He is general manager, a position he will keep, the company said.

Andresen oversaw the company’s largest expansion with installation of a state-of-the-art paper machine in 2001, expansion of the paper recycling facility and installation of a new refiner, slated to start up next month.

The paper company is a subsidiary of Cowles Co., which also owns The Spokesman-Review.

Red Cross will use grant to help vets

The Inland Northwest Chapter of the American Red Cross has received a $39,000 grant to bolster its support of local military hospital services.

The grant, developed with input from the staff of the VA Medical Center, will be used to enhance existing services and develop new programs for local veterans and their families.

The grant will help buy equipment for a new video journaling program allowing veterans to share their stories with future generations.

The money also will be used to create and sustain a “decedent affairs room” at the VA Medical Center where families can grieve the loss of a loved one, work with a counselor and start the recovery process.

Funds also will help provide respite care items, such as spa gift certificates, to caregiving spouses.

Council addresses smoking, curfew

HAYDEN – Hayden is enacting a 20-foot smoking ban in front of any public building, a nod to health-conscious locals who want to curb the negative effects of secondhand smoke.

That means smokers in front of bars, shopping malls and small businesses and shops will have to take their cigarettes 20 feet or more away from the entrance into the building, the Coeur d’Alene Press reported this week.

The rule is due to take effect early next week. But some are already complaining.

Jeri DeLange, the lone council member to vote against the rule, says she’s personally against smoking.

“But in regards to the ordinance” she says, “I don’t think it’s enforceable.”

The Hayden City Council also passed another rule – this one establishing a curfew from midnight to 5 a.m. for people under 18.

Police say man killed rape victim

YAKIMA – Police in Yakima say a 14-year-old girl was killed by a 22-year-old man to keep her from reporting she was raped.

The Yakima Herald-Republic reports Jesus Fabian Perales was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of first-degree murder. He made his first court appearance Wednesday.

Police say Perales slashed Francisca Hernandez-Ramirez’s throat and left her to bleed to death next to an irrigation canal in October 2008.

Her body was not discovered until February in the Yakima River and was identified by dental records.

Perales had left Yakima after the girl’s death, but came back recently.

The Yakima County Sheriff’s Office said Perales and another man drove the girl to an orchard after finding her passed out at a party. In the car, the girl screamed she was raped. Perales then allegedly killed her and threatened the other man.

Monster truck show returning

TACOMA – Nearly a year after a 6-year-old boy watching in the stands was killed by flying debris, the monster truck rally where it happened is coming back to Tacoma.

KING-TV reports the city of Tacoma has rented the Tacoma Dome to Monster Jam in January, the same weekend the boy was killed last year – and made no special safety requests.

In 2008, Sebastian Hizey died after being hit in the head by a piece of metal that flew off a truck. An Edgewood man also was injured by flying debris.

The boy’s stepmother, Phyllis Hizey, said she has lobbied for more safety at the shows, including installing netting, but that she’s been told netting wouldn’t provide much protection.

Ex-pastor begins prison sentence

KENNEWICK – Three years after being sentenced in the death of a 19-year-old bicyclist, a former pastor has begun serving his time in prison.

The Tri-City Herald reports that 61-year-old Randall Foos was returned to Kennewick Tuesday night and immediately taken to a state prison.

He had moved to Las Vegas following his conviction of vehicular homicide, living there while fighting his conviction and sentence on appeal.

In September 2003, college student Sara Casey died six days after Foos struck her with his SUV. Prosecutors contended Foos had ignored his vision problems.

Couple heading to prison for thefts

BOISE – An Idaho man and woman who married after meeting during parole meetings a year ago are headed to prison after being convicted in the theft of $150,000 worth of cash, TVs, computers, home furnishings and beauty supplies.

The Idaho Statesman reported Shawn G. Smith and Jennifer Johnson were sentenced separately on Wednesday in Ada County.

Smith, a 24-year-old who pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary, received a pair of 10-year sentences, but he must first serve a separate 10-year sentence for a burglary conviction out of Kootenai County.

Johnson, a 35-year-old who spent nearly 14 years in prison for lewd conduct, burglary and forgery convictions before she was released on parole in 2008, was sentenced to a 10-year prison sentence. She can ask for parole after three years.

The couple has an infant daughter.


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