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TALKING POINTS: Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day

Friday, Dec. 7, is the day designated as “Pearl Harbor Day.”

The late Ottawa veteran Richard Foltynewicz successfully lobbied for national recognition of Dec. 7 as an annual day of remembrance.

Locally it’s a special day to remember the three young men from Ottawa who were killed that day: Navy Cook Herman Koeppe, 19, and Marine Corporal James McCarrens, 24, both serving on the USS Arizona, and Navy Seaman First Class Robert Halterman, 20, serving on the USS Oklahoma.

Ottawa’s Halterman-McCarrens-Koeppe Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2470 is named in honor of the three Ottawa servicemen who perished at Pearl Harbor 77 years ago.


For giving so that those less fortunate can have a little brighter holiday season.

From some local police departments’ “Shop with a Cop” programs, to the Salvation Army's annual bell ringing campaign, The Times' annual Red Stocking drive and the annual WCMY-JACK FM Freezin' for a Reezin' food drive Friday in the Handy Foods parking lot, Starved Rock Country folks have numerous opportunities to pitch in.

Give in the spirit of the season.

Thank you.


“Winter Storm Bruce” came roaring through Starved Rock Country last week.

Power was out for thousands in the area and there were folks that should’ve but didn’t get off the roads. Schools, some public services and businesses closed for a day.

No doubt some old time grumblers were busy decrying the whole thing because, “back in the day we walked eight miles in minus-40-degree weather into 35 mph winds, with 10-foot snow drifts just to get to school one way."

And if you believe that…?


Officially the state’s 200th birthday was Monday. You did celebrate?

You really have to wonder about some folks who voted in a statewide poll on the state’s most unforgettable moments.

Seriously, the 2016 Chicago Cubs World Series Championship finished second in the poll and the 1919 Black Sox Scandal didn’t even make the top 20?

Gee, didn’t the Sox win several series, the Bears a Super Bowl, the Bulls championships and all those college and prep teams that won championships?

Mourning Lincoln was first, but the Cubs 2016 title was second ahead of 18 other memorable events ranging from being the first state to ratify the constitutional amendment ending slavery to the Lincoln-Douglas Debates and even the conviction of former Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

Go figure.

JIM FRENCH, of Ottawa, is retired after 43 years in radio broadcasting, including 33 in Ottawa. You can reach him through The Times by emailing

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