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Archives for May 2015

Ladage Presented With Elks National Enrique Camarena Award

brassOn Saturday, May 16, Pana Police Officer Adam Ladage was presented with the 2014-15 Enrique Camarena National Officer of the Year Award, presented by the National Benevolent and Protective Orders of Elks. The award was presented during the Spring Elks State Convention held in the Hilton Hotel, Springfield.

Officer Ladage was presented with the Enrique Camarena statue (seen at right), which will be on display throughout the community for citizens to view.  The statue will be returned in the spring of 2016 and presented to the 2015-16 officer of the year. 

The Elks Enrique Camarena Award was established by the Benevolent and Protective Orders of Elks to recognize and honor law enforcement officers who have made a significant contribution in the field of drug prevention and who personify Agent Camarena’s belief that “one person can make a difference.”

Special Agent Enrique Camarena was a slain DEA agent, murdered by the Mexican Drug Cartel, while investigating drug trafficking into the United States.  He was brutally tortured and killed in 1985. One officer is selected from each state to receive the State Award, and from the state award winners, one officer is selected to receive the National Award.   

Pana Elks Lodge 1261 submitted Officer Ladage as a nomination to the State Drug Awareness Chairman for the 2015 Illinois Enrique Camarena Award. On Jan. 24, Ladage was recognized at the annual awards banquet as the 2015 Illinois Enrique Camarena Award winner, and later recognized as the National Officer of the year. The Pana Police Department would like to thank the Pana Elks Lodge for their continued support of law enforcement and their families. 

“Officer Ladage’s dedication was recognized by being the recipient of this prestigious award, and we congratulate and thank him for his service to our community,” Pana Police Chief Daniel Bland said.

Pana in Shelbyville Baseball Regional Semi-Finals Today


DURING A play-in game on Monday, May 18, Pana first baseman Jeff Winter stops an errant pick-off throw at first.

Pana defeated Macon Meridian, 18-10, at Macon. The Panthers play this afternoon, Thursday, May 21, at Shelbyville in the IHSA Class 1A Shelbyville Regional at 4:30 p.m. They face number one seed, Sullivan.

(Mary Cothern Photo)

The Pana Panthers baseball team face the number-one seed, Sullivan, in the IHSA Class 1A Shelbyville Regional at 4:30 p.m. , Thursday, May 21. It is a semi-final game with the winner going to the championship game on Saturday, May 23, at 11:00 a.m.

Pana got to the semi-finals with an 18-9 win over Macon Meridian in Macon on Monday, May 18. Between Pana and Macon, there were 24 hits with Pana having 17 of them.

The Panthers scored twice in the first inning, but Macon added 3 runs in the bottom of the inning to take a 3-2 lead. Pana wrestled the lead back, 4-3 with a pair of runs in the top of the third and 2 more in the fourth. Macon added a pair in their half of the fourth, leaving Pana with a 6-5 lead.

It stayed that way until the sixth as Pana added 3 while Meridian scored 2 and the game went to the seventh with Pana on top, 9-7. The Panthers got 9 insurance runs in the top of the seventh for their total of 18. Macon tried to comeback, but only plated a pair of runs for the 19-8 final.

A trio of Pana players had 3 RBI’s each – Jake McLeod, Rhett Zahradka and Kody Bland. Pana hitters had 5 doubles coming from Dalton Anderson, McLeod,  Brock DeWerff, Jeff Winter

PHS Softball Wraps 2015 Season


THREE SENIORS ON the 2015 Pana High School softball team were honored on Senior Day, Tuesday, May 12, at Tanner Park.

From left are Haylee Riggs, daughter of Jami Ross; Sarah Parkinson, daughter of Marcia Parkison and the late Joe Parkison; and Cheyenne Ashcraft, daughter of Jessica Ashcraft and granddaughter of Derek Ashcraft.

The Pana High School girls softball season came to an end on Tuesday, May 19, with a 7-1 loss to Tuscola in the Class 2A Sullivan IHSA Regional. No other information was available from the semi-final game.

Pana got to the semi-finals with a 4-3 win over Villa Grove on Monday, May 18, at Tanner Park in Pana.

It was a game of momentum with Villa Grove grabbing it early with a 3-run third to take a 3-0 lead.

It took a 4-run effort by the Panthers in the bottom of the fourth to take the lead and then hold on for the win.

Adrianna Suter won her 12th game of the season against 7 losses. She went the full 7 innings, giving up 3 runs on 4 hits. She struck out 9 and didn’t walk a batter.

Both Madyson Butkauskas and senior Cheyenne Ashcraft each had 2 hits with Ashcraft getting a double. Laurel Funneman also double in the game for Pana and also singled. Delaney Harmston, Danielle Simpson, Farrah Ginger, Suter and Sarah Parkinson each singled. Pana had 10 hits in the game.

The softball team honored their seniors on Tuesday, May 12, at Tanner Field.  Haylee Riggs, Sarah Parkison and Cheyenne Ashcraft all contributed in the Senior Night win against Warrensburg-Latham.

Pana finishes the season with a 14-13 record and 4-5 in the South Central Conference.

Senior Graduation Held at First Baptist Christian Academy Sunday


FIRST BAPTIST CHRISTIAN Academy held graduation exercises on Saturday, May 16, in the gymnasium of the school in Rosamond.

Graduates are, in front from left, Johnny Hopper, Pana; Lacey Simpson; Pana; Cheyenne Gleason, Kincaid; Jamie Ashbaker, Nokomis; Samantha Minix, Taylorville; and David Martin, Witt.

In back, Pastor Larry Gruis, Pastor Gerald McPhillips, Pastor Greg White and Charles Wagner.

On Saturday, May 16, at 2:00 p.m., the Senior Graduation was held at First Baptist Christian Academy gymnasium.

After the Senior Processional, the Pledges were led by Pastor Larry Gruis, Administrator. Following the pledges, the Invocation was given by Mr. Charles Wagner, School Board Chairman.

David Martin gave the Valedictorian address, followed by the Academy choir singing, “The Yearning.”

The Commencement Address was given by Pastor Gerald McPhillips.  Pastor McPhillips currently serves as Senior Pastor at the Grace Baptist Church in Taylorville,.  He and his wife, Kathy have two children.

Presentation of diplomas was given by Pastor Larry Gruis, Charles Wagner and Pastor Greg White.

The seniors presented their parents with a rose following the presentation of diplomas.

The Academy choir then sang, “I Shall Not Live In Vain.”

The benediction was given by Pastor Greg White.

Junior honor attendants were Ivy Fry and Lauren Bailey.

Herrick Library Summer Reading Program

Herrick Township Public Library is starting off with their summer Reading Program, June 4-25.  Children will read books, do crafts and win prizes.

Children should come to the library the first week to sign up for the program. The program is open to preschool through the sixth grade. The theme this year is, “Readieval Times.”

For more information call the library at 618-428-5223.

A party will be held at the conclusion of the program.

The library is open on Mondays and Tuesdays, 2:00 to 8:00 p.m., and on Thursdays, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The library offers Internet computers, copier, fax and laminating, Inter-library loans and Talking Books for the Visionally Impaired.

Obituaries: May 21, 2015

Hazel C. Ruot

Hazel Claudine Ruot, 88, of Pana, died Thursday, May 21, 2015 in Prairie Rose Health Care Center, Pana. McCracken-Dean Funeral Home, Pana, in charge of arrangements. Condolences may be sent to

Timothy Eller, Sr.

Timothy E. Eller, Sr., 57, of Herrick, died Monday, May 18, 2015, in his home.  Miller Funeral Home, Ramsey, was in charge of the arrangements. Online condolences may be sent to

Marcia DeClerck

Marcia A. DeClerck, 80, of Pana died May 19, 2015, in Pana Community Hospital. Seitz Funeral Home, Assumption, in charge of arrangements. Condolences may be sent to

Ethel ‘Marie’ Grotts

Ethel M. “Marie” Grotts, 97, of Pana, formerly of Vandalia, died Sunday, May 17, 2015, in Pana. Miller Funeral Home, Vandalia, is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be sent to www.

Wet Weather Can’t Dampen Spirit Of 2015 Pana Days Chautauqua


days2PANA DAYS CHAUTAUQUA went on as planned this past weekend, Thursday through Saturday, May 14-16, in Kitchell Park in Pana.

Between the showers, vendors sold many items and food was aplenty for those who braved the elements. When the weather was decent, so were the crowds which attended. Several new activities were contested during the weekend. The Pana Lions Club reported brisk sales of their pork chop sandwiches on Saturday. A lot of children took advantage of the arm band ride tickets which were sold all three days of the carnival.

As of presstime today, Monday, May 18, results or other information concerning the activities were unavailable.

In future editions of the PN-P, look for the winners of the Baby, Little Miss and Mister Contests which was held on Saturday. Also, other contest results will be published when available.

In the photo, members of the Pana American Legion Color Guard presented the colors for the opening ceremony. Pana Chamber of Commerce President Bob Smith (right) welcomed guests to the event and outlined the activities which were going to be held.

Pana Days Chautauqua is sponsored by the Pana Chamber and organized by Executive Secretary Janet Blue.

(Tom Latonis Photos)

Memorial Day Ceremony In Kitchell Park

A Memorial Day ceremony will be held at 10:30 a.m., Monday, May 25, in Kitchell Park, sponsored by the American Legion, Amvets and Pana VFW.

Bring flowers to place at the memorial; see the Fold of Honor “13 folds” of the American Flag and hear the history of TAPS.

Pastor Greg White, US Navy Veterans will be the speaker. The Pledge of Allegiance will be led by Girl Scout Troop 3179 and the National Anthem by Sheila and Lucy Kennedy.

Master of ceremonies will be Mick Clemons, American Legion vice commander.

Everyone is invited to attend. Bring a lawn chair to enjoy the day.

Pana Council Committee Meetings Tuesday

A meeting of the Community Support Committee of the Pana City Council will be held Tuesday, May 19, at 4:30 p.m.

The topics of discussion will be election of committee chairman and any other topic properly presented.

Then, at 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, the Administration Committee will meet.

Topics of discussion will be election of committee chairman, lake lot lease agreement, City budget and any other topic properly presented.

Both meetings will be in the Council Chambers of Pana City Hall.

Litchfield Ends Pana’s Soccer Season In Regional Finals


PANA’S DAYLEE DENTON, right, goes after a loose ball just before scoring her goal against the Litchfield Purple Panthers on Friday, May 15, in the Carlinville IHSA Class 1A Regional final.

The Purple Panthers were able to keep the Panthers away from the goal and came away with a 4-2 win over Pana to advance to the sectional at Quincy on Tuesday, May 19.

(Tom Latonis Photo)

The Pana Panthers girls soccer team couldn’t convert on several key chances during Friday’s, May 15, IHSA Regional Championship at Carlinville as the Litchfield Purple Panthers defeated Pana, 4-2.

Those who follow high school soccer in the South Central Conference know it has been a dog fight every time the top three teams got together. In fact, the league title was shared by Pana, Litchfield and Carlinville who took turns beating each other. Pana beat Litchfield in the regular season, but lost to Carlinville. Litchfield beat Carlinville, but lost to Pana.

The merry-go-round continued in the regional. In the semi-finals, it was Pana’s turn to knock off Carlinville, but Litchfield was able to turn the tables on Pana in the regional championship, with a strong defense and pin-point passing.

“It was a well played game,” noted Pana Coach Lisa Magliari, who after the game announced she would not be returning as the team’s coach next season. “Although we really wanted that regional championship we have to look at how far we have come as a program these past three seasons. Quite impressive. This is a special group of girls and I was lucky to get to coach them.”

Litchfield jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the first 10 minutes of the game with senior Jade Taylor of Litchfield providing the fire power. She scored at the 32:09 mark, then again with 30:41 showing in the first half.

Pana did show some life later in the first half, dominating the Purple Panthers in the final 20 minutes or so. The Panthers finally broke through with 21:52 left in the half as Daylee Denton broke free on a fast break as Colleen Weddle made a nice pass over the top of the Litchfield defense. Denton got control of the ball, and from about 20 yards out, stuffed it in the right corner of the goal to cut Litchfield’s lead in half, 2-1.

The Panthers appeared to be getting the upper hand late in the half and appeared to be wearing down Litchfield. Senior Hannah Miller got the equalizer when her shot from about 18 yards out sailed over the goalkeeper’s head and struck the cross bar. Litchfield’s goal tender Valerie Furlong quickly turned to grab the ball, but she couldn’t get a grip on the wet and somewhat muddy sphere and it went in to tie the game at 2-2 with 2:10 left in the first half.

Early on in the second half, Litchfield appeared to get its bearings back and what proved to be the winning goal came off the foot of Taylor – her hat trick – as again the wet ball played into the contest. Pana’s keeper Taylor Rochkes got her hands on the ball, but the slippery surface wouldn’t allow her to get a good grip and it squirted behind her and into the goal for a 3-2 Litchfield lead with 37:38 left in the second half.

“Our starting keeper, Emily Gatons, was out with a concussion from the Carlinville game, which forced us to press former keeper Taylor Rochkes back in goal,” Magliari said. “She did an excellent job filling the role, considering she hadn’t played the position since the first gameof the regular season.”

Over the next 10 minutes, Pana had three chances for a goal, but couldn’t convert as Furlong continued to befuddle the Panthers’ offense.

Litchfield got an insurance goal with 25:40 left in the game off a nice corner kick which landed in front of Pana’s goal. The ball went from Abi Morris to Elli Holan who put the ball in the back of the net to make it 4-2, Litchfield.

It was fairly academic after the goal. Pana had a couple more chances, but the defense couldn’t be solved.

Rochkes faced 24 Litchfield shots and made 14 saves. Pana had 23 shots with Furlong making 16 saves. Pana did have 5 direct kicks and Litchfield had zero. Litchfield was whistled for 13 fouls compared to 6 for Pana. Litchfield had 5 corner kicks and the Panthers had 2.

The season ends for the Panthers – their third in the history of the program. It is the best-ever season as Pana compiled an 18-4 record. They were 7-1 in the South Central Conference and are co-champions along with Carlinville and Litchfield.

Litchfield’s season continues in Quincy on Tuesday, May 19, as they face Rochester who won their own regional with a 4-0 win over Quincy Notre Dame. QND is the host school and the match begins at 4:30 p.m.