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Family benefits from Heat Up Wisconsin programSubmitted: 10/06/2013
Story By Adam Fox

Family benefits from Heat Up Wisconsin program
WAUSAU - A Wausau family will feel a little warmer this winter after winning a free furnace through the Heat Up Wisconsin program.

Dan Hackbarth found the contest in a local advertisement, so he thought he would apply and see how he could do.

It's a Lennox program that provides free installations of high-efficiency gas furnaces for people and families in need.

Hackbarth describes his tough times.

"I kind of put down that two years ago I lost my job and then the following year I lost both of my parents," Hackbarth said. "They had been helping me out quite a bit because a loss of job means loss of income too."

The Hackbarths old furnace was more than 50 years old.

Their son Zachary, 1st grade, is excited for the upgrade.

"I think its awesome," Zachary said. "We think its going to be nice and cozy, we think its going to be awesome."

The Heat Up Wisconsin program stretches from Wisconsin to Minnesota, as well as the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

Individual Lennox dealers select from applicants in their area. They then decide which person is in the most need from their stories.

More than 300 families have received free furnaces since the program started in 2010.








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 IN OTHER NEWS

RHINELANDER - As technology advances, more kids turn to tablets and electronics rather than toys.

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Just last week major Toy Company Toys 'R' Us filed for bankruptcy.

The increasing reliance on technology has affected book stores too.

In recent years we have also seen major book stores close.

Watching the changes in bigger companies show local stores the direction consumers are moving.

Local book seller Kira Peters said it also helps smaller stores like Book World in downtown Rhinelander to move forward.

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TOMAHAWK - A 36- year-old woman was partially ejected from her car near Tomahawk.

The woman lost control of her car and rolled over into a ditch. 

There were no passengers in the car with her.

The woman was air lifted to a Wausau area hospital. 

The Lincoln County Sheriff's Office says her injuries don't appear to be life threatening.

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ADAMS COUNTY - 46-year-old Susan Hall, 46- year-old Michael Mathewson and 55-year-old Debra Phillips are suspects involved in hiding the body of Isaac Salinas. 

Salinas went missing around September 11th. 

Three were no obvious sign of trauma to Salinas' body. 
 
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PORTAGE COUNTY - A motorcycle rider died after a car crash in Portage County Saturday.

A car was trying to avoid another car pulling out of a drive way and slowed down causing the motorcycle rider to hit the back of the vehicle.

The motorcycle rider was pronounced dead on scene.

The other drivers had no injuries.

The incident is still under investigation.

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LAND O' LAKES - Even though it may not feel like it, Autumn has officially begun. Plenty of towns in the Northwoods celebrate the season with a colorama.

This weekend Land O Lakes is hosting its colorama. Land O Lakes has held a colorama for about 35 years.

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WESTON - About six months ago a family lost a loving father, husband and friend. 

Everest Metro Police Detective Jason Weiland died during a shooting that took the lives of four people in total. 

Saturday Weiland's family and friends came together to give back to the community that gave them so much support and helped them move forward during their time of need. 

"He was a person who loved to laugh, he had a nick name for everybody," said Weiland's longtime friend and organizer of Jay's Ride Josh Preiser. 

People who knew Weiland and even those who didn't, came out on Saturday to ride in his honor. 

"We had all this pent up energy we didn't, know what to do with it," said Preiser. 

Weiland's family and friends organized Jay's Ride.

 It's fundraiser for the Jason Weiland Criminal Justice Scholarship at Northcentral Technical College. 

"This is a testimony of Jason's daughters wanting to support the community after the community helped them," said Weiland's mentee and friend Matt Krembs. 

Even though Jason is no longer here, his wife of 14 years says seeing people come out months after the tragic event shows the support isn't going anywhere.

"It makes me hopeful for the future that we'll still have events like this and people will be there for us," said Weiland's wife Kara. 

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RHINELANDER - Kid got outside and got active at the YMCA of the Northwood's Fit Kids Duathalon tonight. 

Three age groups competed in the running and biking events. 

The five and under group ran around the building and biked through the parking lot, but the older age groups biked through the trails behind the YMCA. 

"It's rugged enough that you have to have a little bit or stamina and a little bit or grit to actually make it through the course," said YMCA Aquatics and Youth and Family Director Matt Steingraber. 
 
Some of the kids even trained for the event. 

The top three in each age group got awards. 

The main purpose of the event was to get kids out of the house and doing something to keep them fit and active. 

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