WISCONSIN NEWS ROUNDUP: Skydivers who survived collision in Superior are selling the video to keep company alive
Nine skydivers who survived after their two planes collided in Superior are selling their video, to try-and-save the company that provided the aircraft. Five of the skydivers had cameras on their helmets which showed the dramatic collision on November 2nd. Skydiver Barry Sinex came up with the idea of selling the video to media outlets, to try and raise 150-thousand dollars to keep the firm of Skydive Superior in business -- and to maintain their landing zone at Superior's airport. N-B-C bought exclusive access for two weeks. One media report said the network paid 100-thousand dollars, although Mark Androsky of Skydive Superior told the Duluth News-Tribune the exact amount is still being negotiated. Other outlets can buy the footage after that. Androsky said the skydivers are customers of his, and the video is theirs -- but he's grateful they're giving the proceeds to his company. Skydive Superior had liability insurance on its two planes -- but they did not insure the aircraft themselves because the company couldn't afford it. Androsky said it would cost about 150-thousand-dollars to fix the aircraft, and 10-thousand per plane to insure them.
Folks in much of central and southern Wisconsin are seeing their first measurable snow of the fall. The National Weather Service said a strong cold front was moving through northern Wisconsin this morning, with rain ahead of the front and snow behind it. Forecasters predicted slippery roads in many areas for at least the morning commute. La Crosse had just under three-fourths-of-an-inch by 7:30. Parts of far southwest Wisconsin were expecting up to an inch. Folks in the north have had several light snows this fall. A couple inches were expected today in the Lake Superior Snow Belt, with an inch in north central and far northeast Wisconsin. Meanwhile, the Weather Service says parts of the west and northwest can expect their coldest temperatures of the season tonight, with temperatures in the single-digits and teens, and wind-chills around zero through the night. The Weather Service says we'll have highs in the 20's tomorrow, which are normal for mid-December -- but the cold snap will be short, and more normal readings in the 30's-and-40's are expected by the end of the week.
It's Veterans Day -- and while it's a business day for most of us, officials hope we'll take a moment to remember veterans who've preserved our freedoms. The state is holding two official programs today at the Veterans' Homes at King in Waupaca County and Union Grove in Racine County. Also, Marcus Theaters are showing movies about the Honor Flight program. They're free for veterans and military members. Almost 400-thousand veterans live in Wisconsin. Veterans Affairs Secretary John Scocos says the Badger State is the best for veterans with a host of outreach programs that include job fairs, and efforts to deal with drug and mental health issues. Scocos said his agency is also working with the national V-A to combat suicides among veterans. Scocus tells the Wisconsin Radio Network quote, "We've seen that if we don't reach out to that veteran within the first six months in the issues he-or-she might have, we'll probably lose that veteran." Scocos also highlights the veterans' resource center his agency opened a year ago. It has handled eight-thousand calls, plus interactive chats as part of the state's efforts to remain in touch with vets. The state has been saluting them all weekend. Events included a program yesterday in Chippewa Falls, a female veterans' expo in Janesville on Saturday, and a State Capitol observance Friday in which the Vietnam War was given a special remembrance.
A 73-year-old man died after a weekend tree-cutting accident in Manitowoc County. Coroner Curtis Green said the man, who's from Whitelaw, was cutting down a tree in the town of Franklin when the mishap occurred. He died later at a hospital. Autopsy results were expected to be released later today. For now, the victim's name and other details of the accident are not being released.
About two dozen people gathered at a church in Waukesha County last night, to celebrate the return of a missing 15-year-old girl. Great Mission Church in Wales had planned the event as a vigil, to pray for the safe return of Kathryn Stalbaum of the town of Genesee. She turned up safe-and-sound in Chicago on Friday, where a T-V station said the girl flagged down a police officer and asked for help. Stalbaum was missing since Tuesday, after she missed a school bus and then texted a friend to say she would ride her bike to Kettle Moraine High School. She never made it there, and her bike was found abandoned in Waukesha. Authorities have not said why the girl disappeared, or how she ended up in Chicago. Family friend Pallin Allen said many questions remain, and the parents chose not to go to the media because quote, "This needs to be about Kathryn." Authorities have not said why the girl disappeared, or how she ended up in Chicago. Church Pastor Jay Cavaiani said it doesn't matter what happened and quote, "We're just glad she's safe."
The long-running effort to dredge P-C-B's from the Fox River has turned up some maritime history in northeast Wisconsin. Five sunken tugboats and barges were discovered behind the Tetra Tech facility in Green Bay. The company has contracted with J-F Brennan for the P-C-B clean-up project -- and because the area is nominated for the National Register of Historic Places, it needed federal approval to move the boats. The Green Bay Press-Gazette said several state-and-federal agencies were involved. Tetra Tech said the barges and tugboats either sank or were abandoned years ago, because they couldn't be used anymore. A maritime archaeological firm found that at least one vessel was so badly deteriorated, it could not be identified as either a vessel or a dock. Tetra Tech proposed saving the more recognizable parts, and making a display of them at Green Bay's Neville Public Museum. Government officials have approved it. Dredging work will end soon for the season, and then Brennan will start bringing up the sunken ships.
Powerball and Mega Millions both have jackpots of more than 100-million dollars for their next drawings. The top Powerball prize is 110-million dollars for Wednesday night, after nobody won Saturday's jackpot. The top Mega Millions' prize is 132-mllion for tomorrow night, after it rolled over on Friday. A ticket sold in Georgia was the only one to win Friday's second prize. The numbers of Wisconsin winners were not immediately available. Friday's numbers were 41, 42, 51, 57, and 65. The Mega Ball was 2. Tomorrow's cash option is 71-million. In Powerball, 93-hundred Wisconsin players won this past Saturday. Nobody won the top-three prizes Saturday. Seven players won 200-dollars each by having the Power Play and matching either four regular numbers or three-plus-the-Powerball. Saturday's numbers were 3, 9, 37, 49, and 56. The Powerball was 32. Wednesday's cash option is just over 62-million-dollars.
A Wisconsin high school senior is one of five finalists in a national country music contest. 17-year-old Zach Molitor of Milton beat out 50-thousand other hopefuls for a chance to win the Texaco Country Showdown. The event has helped more than a few country superstars launch their careers -- like Garth Brooks, Toby Keith, and Martina McBride. The finals are set for January 16th at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, the home of the Grand Ole Opry. The winner gets 100-thousand-dollars and a recording contract for an album. At 6-foot-4, Molitor is a tall-and-lean country performer who goes by the name Zac "The Mule" Matthews. Over the past three months, he won a local competition at the Rock County fair -- as well as a state contest and one of five regional competitions in Walker Minnesota with songs he wrote himself.