Earlier this month I asked you to submit your choices for top local news stories for 2012. After compiling all the votes from you, station staff, myself and others, here's how it turned out...
1. The Murder of Cold Spring Police Officer Thomas Decker
2. The elections
3. Turmoil at Willmar City Hall
4. The death of Senator Gary Kubly
5. The firing of utility manager Bruce Gomm, his lawsuit and settlement
6. Darek Nelson arrested for murdering teen co-worker at Montevideo Pizza Ranch
7. Delbert Huber gets 30 years for shooting of Tim Larson
8. Vikings Stadium Bill passes as well as money for Ridgewater College renovation.
9. Highway 23 Bypass of Paynesville completed
10. Swenson Motors burns, is sold to Mills.
Thank you everyone for voting. Stories that almost made the top ten were the June storm that knocked out power for 3 days in Grove City, the August drunk driving crash that killed 3 members of an Atwater family, the warm, snowless winter and the January meeting on the Somali culture at WEAC. As for myself, I will be glad to see 2012 end. One of my best friends, Mike Buzzeo, died in April. It still hurts to even say it. My summer passion, bike riding, was ruined by a series of tire problems on my recumbent bike. I bought a hot rod car and proceeded to freeze the motor. I was disappointed in the results of the national and local elections. The Twins stunk and I turned 50. There were some bright spots...I lived to see 50 in good health. My son Michael had the experience of a lifetime, spending 5 months in Chile and made it back safely. My other son Tony moved into his own apartment in Sioux Falls and is doing well in his career. My wife Sharon took another step to completing her masters' degree. We both have jobs we enjoy and live in a nice town with friends we love. My dog Sadie still loves me, and the Vikings had a very good season and made it into the playoffs. Good bye 2012, and here's hoping 2013 is a good one for all of us!