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Former Area Boston Marathoners React to BombingsSubmitted: 04/15/2013
Story By Newswatch 12 Sports

Former Area Boston Marathoners React to Bombings
BOSTON - What most people would say is the unthinkable happened in Boston on Monday. Just as thousands of marathoners were crossing the finish line, two bombs exploded.

Three people were killed, and more than one hundred people were injured.

Those numbers could rise.

It ruins what has become an annual tradition.

Nearly 27,000 people took part in the historic race. All 50 states and 73 other countries all represented.


It's a sad time for all Americans. For former Boston Marathon runners from the Northwoods, it's even tougher.

"It's hard to comprehend something like that happening at a marathon," says Dan Lemke of Tomahawk. He ran the Boston Marathon in 2003. "It's a horrible crime, and a sad day in the history of U.S. Sports."

Blaine Nyberg of Minocqua ran the Boston Marathon the last three years. He missed this year's race because of medical issues. However the four other runners in his group were back this year.

"The first thing I did was text Matt Thomas and Dr. Rick Fossen and asked them if they were o.k.," adds Nyberg. "Both texted me back right away and said they had already finished and were a block away from the initial blast."

The other runners in the group were approximately 20-30 minutes behind those who were near the finish line. They were rerouted to another street to meet their families. The group of runners were all safe.

Police in New York City and London are stepping up security following explosions at the Boston Marathon. The London Marathon is Sunday.

Security at the White House was also beefed up after the explosions. No one was allowed to walk on Pennsylvania Avenue.

Monday night's NHL game in Boston was postponed. Tuesday
night's NBA game also in Boston was cancelled.


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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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MOSINEE - Wisconsin's new state budget includes $11.5 billion for education over the next two years.

On Friday, Gov. Scott Walker (R-Wisconsin) visited schools across the state to discuss some details of the education budget.

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RHINELANDER - A well known sex offender in this area will get out of prison again.  Albert Chagnon, 35, is set to be released into Oneida County on Tuesday.

Chagnon was convicted of child pornography possession in 2003.

He was released in 2014, but soon ended up under arrest again for using newspaper clippings of girls' pictures to make a booklet.  That booklet had more than 270 photos in it, many from the Lakeland Times.

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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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RHINELANDER - Starting Monday, Northwoods Transit Connections riders will need to call 24 hours in advance to get around the Rhinelander, Minocqua, and Eagle River areas.

Many bus drivers will also voluntarily furlough their pay until federal funds come in.

The Oneida-Vilas Transit Commission, which operates the popular public transit program, made the moves at a meeting Friday morning.

"What we're adjusting is some things internally around accessing an adequate fund supply," said Commission Chair Erv Teichmiller.

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RHINELANDER - Hundreds of people will walk to help raise money and awareness for Alzheimer's care in Rhinelander on Saturday. 

The Walk to End Alzheimer's is held annually in more than 600 communities nationwide. Eighteen of those communities are in Wisconsin. It's the largest event held in support of Alzheimer's care. 

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RHINELANDER - A Rhinelander mom said her lifestyle completely changed when a new neighbor moved in. 

She used to love the close proximity and the ability to walk to almost anything in town.

She has two young kids and regularly checks the sex offender registry. 

The Rhinelander mom wishes to stay anonymous. We'll refer to her as Linda. 

Linda found out a sex offender moved in a few doors down from her by flipping through a local newspaper, She saw a small box at the bottom page with a notification. 

"He kind of just snuck in," said Linda. 

William Huntington moved close to Linda's house in May. However, Linda says she knew nothing until she did research of her own in July. 

"When I saw what he was found guilty of I was in shock. I was in complete shock," said Linda. 

He was convicted in Dane County for repeatedly sexually assaulting his 8- year- old neighbor about twenty years ago. He's now required to wear a lifetime GPS monitoring system. 

Dana Wszalek works with the Department of Corrections in Rhinelander as a Regional Chief. Her office supervises people like Huntington in the community.

"What we do is not a cookie cutter type of approach to supervision; it's relative to what their risks are based on their case dynamics," said Wszalek. 

State law requires high risk sex offender to live at least 1,500 feet from churches, schools and playgrounds. Restrictions on other sex offenders are left to local offices. 

The Oneida County Sheriff's Office says there are no ordinances for sex offenders in Oneida County.

"They have different life experiences. They are a part of the community," said Wszalek. 

Wszalek understands the wariness community members might feel.

"As a parent it's important to be aware of who's in your neighborhood," said Wszalek. 

Linda said one of her 6- year- old child was planning on walking to school with friends this year, but instead they'll get driven.

"I feel like the neighborhood we moved into to be able to have these things has been taken away," said Linda.

Linda said she was shocked she didn't get a call or knock on her door from law enforcement.

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