21May 2022

Mayo fiscal update: Costs up, income off

ROCHESTER, Minn. – Mayo Clinic operating income fell $100 million in the first three months of 2022 while expenses climbed. The revenue totaled $142 million  compared to a record $243 million a year earlier. The statistics were released as a government requirement because Mayo relies on municipal bonds to finance expansion projects. While revenue was down, costs rose. Salaries and benefits rose $155 million, supplies $188 million.

20May 2022

College scores

Baseball: UW-Whitewater 10, Milwaukee Engineering 6

Baseball: UW-Stevens Point 11, Lawrence 6

Baseball: Wooster 1, Bethel 0

Softball: Bethel 1, Berry 1

20May 2022

Minnesota prep

Baseball: Plainview-Elgin-Millville Bulldogs 13, Wabasha-Kellogg Falcons 4

Softball: Plainview-Elgin-Millville Bulldogs 7, Wabasha-Kellogg Falcons 4

More scores  (more…)

20May 2022

Wisconsin prep

Baseball: Blair-Taylor Wildcats 15, Thorp Cardinals 6

Baseball: Melrose-Mindoro Mustangs 3, Eleva-Strum Cardinals 1

Softball: Blair-Taylor Wildcats 15, Thorp Cardinals 6

More scores  (more…)

20May 2022

Vistiges of storm: Pooled water, downed trees

WINONA, Minn. – More than three inches of rain so softened the ground that many trees lost their rooting and toppled. The winds, gusting as hard as 60 mph, sealed their fate. The overnight storm spared Winona utilities. There were no power outages. County emergency dispatchers reported 17 calls about rockslides, washouts, flooding and downed trees.

Earlier: Torrential rains soak Stockton with 3-1/2 inches

After nature’s rampage. Unfazed, ducks waddle out of Lake Winona and cross the path to examine a new albeit temporary play pool in the saturated lawn. In the middle of the pool is a tree that couldn’t resist the wind. Image: Steve Lunde

20May 2022

Collision claims life of Kellogg man

KELLOGG, Minn. – A Kellogg driver died after a two-vehicle collision at the troubled intersection of  Highway 61 and the cut-off to Rochester on Route 42. James Leroy Gander, 78, died at the Wabasha hospital. The other driver, Jaidyn Rose Schutz, 19, of Welch, also was taken to the Wabasha hospital. Her injuries were not considered life-threatening. The intersection is an exit to a busy Kwik Trip fuel stop outside  Kellogg. Gander was heading south on Highway 61, toward Winona, in a 2018  Dodge Ram pickup. Schutz was in a  2002 Ford Taurus. The accident was about 3:10 p.m.

20May 2022

$250,000 bail ordered in meth case

ROCHESTER, Minn. – Two people in whose car police said they found a half-pound of methamphetamine on May 2 were arrested belatedly. Jose Aguilera, 29, and Marina Garza, 36, were stopped May 2 for a traffic issue. They were already well-known to police from earlier felony drug cases. Their vehicle was seized pending a search warrant. When meth was found, the regional Violent Crimes Enforcement Team was called in. Also found was marijuana and drug paraphernalia, police said. Now Aguilar has been arraigned on first-degree drug sales ad passion with bail set at $250,000. The Garza case remains in process.

Aguilera and Garza. Now in another felony drug prosecution.

20May 2022

Torrential rains soak Stockton with 3-1/2 inches

STOCKTON, Minn. – This Winona County community took 3-1/2 inches of rain overnight from a powerful spring storm that swept through the region. No other location reported more. Even so, there were ither heavy accumulations:

> Winona: 3.2 inches.

> Stewartville: 2.8 inches.

> Chatfield: 2.5 inches.

> Rochester: 1.0 inches.

In Winona several streets flooded, but the water quickly retreated into storm sewers.  Hail caused damage. Nearly three-inch stones fell near Twin Lakes south of Albert Lea and two-inchers in Glenville, also south of Albert Lea.  Stones as large as 1-1/2 inches hit the Rochester area. Gusts approached 60 mph across a four-county area from Freeborn County in Minnesota to LaCrosse County in Wisconsin. About 2,000 people lost power in both Rochester and Eau Claire.

Earlier: Rough weather coming, tornadoes perhaps

Flash flood erosion. Normally babbling Peterson Creek swelled two feet into a roaring torrent and tore more into a hillside up the Garvin Brook tributary from Stockton. Image: Steve Lunde

20May 2022

Dirt track cancels event because of rains

FOUNTAIN CTY, Wis. –  The Mississippi Thunder dirt track has been left too muddy and mushy by rain for racing.  Friday night events were cancelled. A spokesperson said that sun was needed to dry out the track.

20May 2022

Sabato’s crystal ball: Legislature in play

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The closely watched prognostication site by political scientist Larry Sabato sees November elections to the Minnesota Legislature among the closest in the nation. In short:

> State Senate: Leaning Republican.

> State House: A toss-up for now.

Sabato’s analysis: “Both of Minnesota’s chambers should be in play this year, but given the national political environment, it would be easier for the GOP to consolidate power by flipping the House than for the Democrats to do it by flipping the Senate.” Sabato is at the University of Virginia. His site: “Sabato’s Crystal Ball.”

20May 2022

Minnesota unemployment to historic low

ST. PAUL, Minn. – More and more Minnesotans have jobs. The state jobs agency reported that seasonally adjusted unemployment fell to 2.25% — the lowest since the state began tracking in 1976. April unemployment rate was three-10ths of a point less than March.  Perhaps even more significant: Minnesota’s labor force participation rate was the highest since November 2020 at 68.3%. Thee national rate is 62.2%.

19May 2022

College scores

Baseball: Augustana 10. MSU-Mankato 9

19May 2022

Minnesota prep

Baseball: Winona Winhawks 14, Faribault Falcons 3

Baseball:  Cannon Falls Bombers 8, St. Charles Saints 3

Softball: Winona Cotter Ramblers 17, Rushford-Peterson Trojans 4

More scores  (more…)

19May 2022

Wisconsin prep

Baseball: Holmen Vikings 9, Sparta Spartans 1

Baseball: Black River Falls Tigers 10, Amery Warriors 2

Softball: Tomah Timberwolves 5, Sparta Spartans 4

19May 2022

Rough weather coming, tornadoes perhaps

LACROSSE, Wis. — The National Weather Service issued a tornado watch for a 25-county swatth of southeast Minnesota and neighboring Iowa and Wisconsin counties through 10 p.m. The watch includes Buffalo, Fillmore, Houston, Olmsted, Trempealeau, Wabasha, and Winona counties, among others– and these cities:

> Iowa: Estherville, Algoma.

> Minnesota: Austin, Faribault, Fairmont, Mankato, Rochester, Wabasha, Winona.

> Wisconsin: LaCrosse.

19May 2022

Wild man on train to prison five years

MADISON, Wis. – A federal judge sentenced a passenger on the Empire Builder to five years in prison for brandishing a knife on the Amtrak train in November 2020. Timothy Thomas. 32, of Portland, Oregon had pleadad guilty. U.S. District Judge William Conley pronounced the sentence. The train was west-bound for LaCrosse, Winona and eventually Portland. The train was passing along the LaCrosse River in Wisconsin when Thomas threatened fellow passengers, banged on seats, and pulled an eight-inch knife on the conductor. The engineer stopped the train, the conductor threw Thomas  off, and police arrested him trackside.

Earlier: Train crew puts off knife-wielding man on foot

19May 2022

Pelowski plunks down filing fee for re-election

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Veteran Winona state legislator Gene Pelowski followed through on a February announcement and filed papers to start the process toward an 18th term. Whether Pelowski, a Democrat, will have a challenger in either the August primary or the November general election is unclear. So far no one else has filed candidacy papers with the secretary of state. There have been times when Republicans have chosen not to field a candidate against Pelowski. In 2020, for example, Pelowski was unchallenged and carried 96% of the House District 28-A vote. Pelowki, a retired Winona High School teacher, is 70.

Earlier: Pelowski maps 18th bid for State House

19May 2022

Board upset at sex charges against principal

SAVAGE, Minn. – The School Board in this southwest Minneapolis suburb has placed Mohamed Ali Selim on leave as principal of Eagle Ridge Middle School pending resolution of criminal charges of soliciting sex from a minor. In a formal statement the Board said there’s no indication that District 191 students were involved. The Eagle View school has 310 students in Grades 6 to 8. The Board called the allegations “upsetting.” Counselors were assigned to help students and staff cope. Associate Principal Bill Heim was put in charge.

Earlier: School principal arrested in sex sting

Selim. Long and honored record in Twin Cities suburban schools.

Selim profle

Selim, of Lakeville, joined District 191 in the 2Fall 2019 semester as principal of William Byrne Elementary. In 2021 he won Leadership in Action Award at the district’s annual One91 Community of Excellence ceremony. Selim was named principal of Eagle Ridge Middle School He is a 2002 graduate of Richfield High School and held  teaching and administrative positions for several charter schools.

19May 2022

Handcuffs for guy picking up impounded car

WABASHA, Minn. – Probably only Michael Mattison knows why he abandoned hs car on the side of the road. When he later realized the vehicle had been impounded, he went to the sheriff’s impound lot prepared to pay a towing fee. There deputies were waiting with handcuffs. They had found 4.9 pounds of methamphetamine and $1,800 in the car. Mattison, 46, of Lake City, was charged with two counts of first- degree possession of a controlled substance. His bail was set at $200,000.

Mattison. “I’m here for my car,” he said. The deputies said: “We’re here for you.”

19May 2022

Carnahan on lawsuits: “A political stunt”

BLUE EARTH, Minn. – Congressional candidate Jennifer Carnahan says her late husband’s family has engaged in “a political stunt” with lawsuits claiming she owes them $20, 000. The suit comes in the final days of Carnahan’s campaign to be elected to succeed her husband, Jim Hagedorn,  in Congress. The lawsuits allege that Carnahan accepted loans to pay for exotic medical treatments for her husband’s terminal cancer at a naturopathic facility in Arizona. Carnahan said she is powerless to repay any loans until Hagedorn’s estate is probated in court to determine how to divide his assets.


Carnahan: “Grief affects everyone differently. Handling the affairs of my husband’s estate should be a private matter. It’s unfortunate a very simple process has been turned into a political stunt. Jim’s estate is required to go through the probate process and the courts will determine the disposition of assets in accordance with Minnesota law. There is nothing further we are allowed to do at this time. I wish Jim’s family well and know this time has been very difficult for all of us.”

Carnahan. A campaign photo.

18May 2022

Helicopter, duck collide: “May day! May day!”

WABASHA, Minn. – A State Patrol helicopter and duck collided in flight, but the helicopter, although crippled and the pilot injured, managed to make it 80 miles to its home airport in St. Paul and land safely. The pilot suffered a head injury. He was treated at the airport and taken to a hospital. The injury was non-life threatening. A second pilot was unhurt. The helicopter was damaged but believed reparable. The duck died. the helicopter was returning from a local police call in Wabasha County. The collision was about 10:15 p.m.

Point of impact. Look into the cockpit of the Bell 407 head-on. The blue circle on the instrument console to your right is where the duck smashed through the canopy. Feathers were stuck in the craft’s interior.

18May 2022

Minnesota prep

Baseball: Dover-Eyota Eagles 10, Kenyon-Wanamingo Knights 8

Softball: Winona Cotter Ramblers 8, Plainview-Elgin-Millville Bulldogs 2

Softball: Winona Winhawks 16, Rochester Marshall Rockets 0

More scores  (more…)

18May 2022

Wisconsin prep

Softball: Galesville-Ettrick-Trempealeau Red Hawks 7, Wild Rose Wildcats 0

More scores  (more…)

18May 2022

Guilty plea in Winona knifing death

WINONA Minn. – A man who found his woman friend in an imbroglio with another man and who then fatally stabbed the guy has pleaded guilty. Sean Michael Emmons, 38, who has lived in Winona and Red Wing, agreed to accept punishment for a second-degree murder charge in exchange for related charges being dropped. Judge Nancy Buytendorp accepted the plea-deal and scheduled sentencing for July 15. Emmons faces possibly 12 years in prison. The dropped charges: First-degree murder, felony assault, and multiple drug charges. The stabbing was in September at an East Sarnia Street apartment.  The victim, Eric Gaulke, 43, delayed seeking medical help because a meth deal was involved and he wanted to lay low. avoid police,  and heal on his own. The wound festered for days. By the time friends got Gaulke to a hospital, it was too late. He died.

Earlier: Murder charged in Winona stabbing

Emmons. Meth and i\other charges dropped or reduced in plea bargain.

18May 2022

Lawmaker’s family sues widow, claims unpaid loans

FARIBAULT, Minn. – The family of the late Congressman Jim Hagedorn says it advanced $20,000 to his widow before he died to cover his medical expenses. Three months later, they haven’t been repaid even though the widow, Jennifer Carnahan, has received $358,000 in death benefits. The family’s allegations were in a pair of lawsuits against Carnahan. For Carnahan the lawsuits couldn’t be at a worse time: She is running a campaign to put herself in Congress to fill her husband’s unexpired term. There are 18 candidates vying for the job. The election is Tuesday – only seven days away.

The back story

Jim Hagedorn, a Republican, died February 17. He was the son of an earlier Congressman from southern Minnesota, Tom Hagedorn, who was elected to two terms in the 1970s. The son liked Washington and was politically active. He called himself Mr. Conservative on a blog. He held several federal positions in Washington during Republican presidencies.

> 2010: Jim Hagedorn, calling Blue Earth his home, declared his candidacy for Congress but lost the GOP primary.

> 2014: Hagedorn  ran for Congress and lost 54% to 45% to incumbent Tim Walz, a Democrat who later became governor of Minnesota.

> 2016: Hagedorn lost again to Walz, 50% to 49%.

> 2018: Hagedorn ran again and won, 50% to 49%, against political newcomer Dan Feehan. Also in 2018, Hagedorn = and Jennifer Carnahan, chair of the state Republican party, were married. He was 55, she 46. .

 > 2019: Hagedirnwas diagnosed with Stage 4 kidney cancer.

> 2020: Hagedorn defeated Feehan for second term, against Feehan, 50% to 49%.

> 2021: Hagedorn died on February 17. A special election was ordered for May 24 to fill out the remaining seven months of his term. On March 14 his widow filed for candidacy for the office.

In a happy moment. Congressman Jim Hagedorn and Jennifer Carnahan pose at the Great Northern Railroad’s iconic Stone Bridge over the Mississippi River in Minneapolis. Their courtship began through people they knew in Minnesota Republican circles. Their marriage was in 2018. He died in 2022.

The family lawsuits against Carnahan revealed that Mayo doctors in Rochester had given up on further treatment of the cancer in January 2022. As a last hope, Carnahan decided on an expensive move to the Envita Medical Centers in Scottsdale, Arizona. Envita specializes in naturopathic treatments that insurance doesn’t cover.  To meet expenses, according to the family’s lawsuits, Hagedorn’s mother, Kathleen Kreklau, and her stepfather, Robert Kreklau,  borrowed $25,000 against their Crozet, Virginia, home and loaned $10,000 to Carnahan. Hagedorn’s sister, Tricia Lucas, also of Virginia, said she charged $10,000 on a credit card to help cover the Envita treatment. The family said Carnahan made a “clear and definite promise” to reimburse  them from proceeds related to Hagedorn’s  death. To date, it is believed that Carnahan has received $174,000 on death benefits from, Congress, equal to Hagedorn’s annual salary, and an additional #174,000 from life insurance.

Earlier: Carnahan files to complete husband’s MN-1 term

Earlier: Carnahan to seek husband’s MN-1 seat in Congress?


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