Meg Heaton has been a reporter with the Hudson Star Observer since 1990. She has a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and Native American Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.
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It is a story this Hudson family never thought they would be telling -- the addiction of their son to heroin. But what they have learned over the past nine months has convinced them that their experience is just another case of what is becoming an epidemic for middle class America. Their son was an athlete in high school with a solid group of friends. He was heading to college after graduation.
The body found on the shore of the St. Croix River in Lakeland, Minn., on Tuesday, May 14 has been identified as Donald Duane Marklowitz Jr., 55. According to the Washington County Sheriff's office, Marklowitz was last seen in Hudson on April 1. The exact cause of death is still under investigation. At this time, neither the Washington County Sheriff's Office nor Wisconsin authorities are looking for anyone in relation to this case and there is no threat to the public.
A badly decomposed body was found on the shore of the St. Croix River in Lakeland, Minn. on Tuesday, May 14 around 11:30 a.m. According to the Washington County Sheriff's Office, the body was reported found near the 900 block of Quentin Ave. S.. Deputies found the body and reported that it appeared to have been in the water for a long period of time. Deputies were not able to determine the identity of the person on scene. The body was transferred to the custody of the Ramsey County Medical Examiners Office in St. Paul. There are no further details available in this ongoing investigation.
Bobbi Sinnett has been a part of middle school education since Hudson's first middle school opened 39 years ago. She has taught sixth grade the entire time. She was hired by the newly appointed middle school principal Bill Hickox to replace him. She was just out of college. "In those years, you taught everything -- all the subjects. Middle school was a new concept and it was exciting to be part of something so groundbreaking." Sinnett said they just kept working with the concept, trying new things as they came up and building on their success.
The Hudson Police Department wants the public to be aware of an internet scam that has been reported by several residents over the past few days. According to Chief Marty Jensen, people have reported seeing listings on Craig's List for homes and townhomes available for rent in Hudson. The listings include photos and ask for those interested to send a security deposit and the first month's rent.
River Crest Principal Travis Barringer has announced his resignation effective June 30, 2013. Barringer was recruited by and accepted an elementary principal position with the North St. Paul,Oakdale, Maplewood School District (ISD #622) in Minnesota. In his letter to the Hudson Board of Education, Barringer stated, "River Crest is a strong community of students, families, and staff dedicated to the social-emotional and academic achievement of each student. I am proud of the success students have achieved during my three years as principal.
It is difficult to imagine what life has been like for Melissa Costello these past eight months since she found her beautiful 18-year-old daughter dead from suicide in their Grandview Drive home. But she thinks talking about it might just save another family from the unimaginable. Jordan Costello had just graduated from Hudson High in 2012 and was a new freshman at UW-River Falls. Her mother said Jordan had enjoyed a wonderful summer with her friends despite the pain of breaking up with her longtime boyfriend at the end of the school year.
The North Hudson Board of Trustees voted 5-1 to appoint Curt Weese as the village representative to the Hudson Public Library Board of Trustees at their re-organization meeting Tuesday. New village board president Stan Wekkin said he had received numerous emails and telephone calls from people objecting to the appointment and believed other board members had similar contacts. But he said he was confident that Weese would represent the village with integrity and fairness.
Over my 23 years as a reporter for the Star-Observer, I have told some pretty sad stories that have involved our families, friends and neighbors. They have included the loss of loved ones from disease, accidents, natural causes and even criminal acts. It is always difficult to tell these stories but a death from suicide is a special challenge. At the Star-Observer, we generally don't use the word suicide unless the person dies in a very public place, is a person in the public eye or if the circumstances surrounding the suicide endanger the public.
It took a jury a little over three hours to reach a verdict in the case of Aaron Schaffhausen, the father who admitted he killed his three young daughters but said he was insane at the time. The jurors said that while they believed Schaffhausen, 35, suffers from mental illness, he knew what he was doing when he murdered his daughters by cutting their throats in their River Falls home in July 2012.