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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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.
North Hudson police came upon a familiar face recently when they stopped a driver for speeding in the 500 block of Sixth St. N. James S. Meyer, 61, St. Croix Falls, was arrested on March 3 in Washington County after leading authorities on a chase that began in North Hudson, had him driving across a frozen St. Croix River and ended with his arrest in Lakeland. Charges stemming from that incident are still pending. Meyer has now been ordered to appear on charges of obstructing and bail jumping after he allegedly refused to cooperate during the traffic stop.
Heroin is becoming a primary drug of choice in the Hudson area based on the clients they are seeing at Programs for Change, the drug treatment program for Hudson Hospital and Clinic. Pete VanDusartz is the program's director and counseling and social services manager. He says there are three tracks that lead people to addiction to heroin. The first are those people who come across it while experimenting with drugs in general.
When baby boomers think about heroin and who uses it, it is unlikely that young adults in Hudson come to mind. But that's exactly who is using the drug these days according to Hudson police. In the past year, Hudson police have arrested seven people for selling heroin and other controlled substances in the city. In the past two years, there have been four deaths as a result of overdose and twice that number in the larger Hudson area. The most recent was that of Tyler Hole, a Hudson High School graduate who died in a River Falls apartment last month.