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Thursday, March 3, 2005 08:54 pm

quick takes 3-3-05

EAT RIGHT, DO GOOD

Two Springfield restaurants, Maldaner’s and Tuscany, will participate in a statewide effort to raise money for charity. As part of the annual “Share-a-Meal” program, sponsored by Community Shares of Illinois, the restaurants will donate 30 percent of sales on Tuesday, March 8.

Community Shares represents more than 70 charities that address hunger, homelessness, domestic violence, and other needs. Charities and nonprofits that will benefit this year include the Springfield Project, Prevention First Inc., Planned Parenthood Springfield Area, Habitat for Humanity of Sangamon County, the Illinois Stewardship Alliance, and the Illinois Hunger Coalition.

Tuscany is located at 3123 Robbins Rd. (217-726-5343); Maldaner’s is at 222 S. Sixth St. (217-522-4313).

CARTOONIST OF THE YEAR

John Sherffius, whose work began running in Illinois Times in July 2004, was named cartoonist of the year by the National Press Foundation. The prestigious award was presented two weeks ago in Washington, D.C.

Sherffius is the former editorial cartoonist of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He resigned in December 2003, citing disagreements with the newspaper’s editor, Ellen Soeteber. The two had clashed over what she felt was Sherffius’ excessive criticism of President George W. Bush and Republicans. Sherffius, who is self-syndicated, continues to live in the St. Louis area.

Other foundation honorees include New Yorker writer Seymour Hersh, who is credited with uncovering torture at Abu Ghraib prison; Boston Globe editor Martin Baron; and the host of NBC’s Meet the Press, Tim Russert.

FLAGS LOWERED FOR SPRINGFIELD SOLDIER

U.S. Army Spc. Jacob Palmatier became the first soldier from Springfield to die in Iraq. He was killed Saturday, Feb. 24, by a roadside bomb.

Palmatier, 29, was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division, based in Fort Benning, Ga.

He was one of three central Illinois soldiers killed in separate bombings in the past week. Army Staff Sgt. Daniel G. Gresham, 23, of Lincoln, was killed Saturday; 2nd Lt. Richard B. “Brian” Gienau, 29, of Peoria, died Sunday. Gienau was with the Iowa National Guard.

Springfield Mayor Tim Davlin ordered flags on city buildings to be flown at half-staff in Palmatier’s honor. In a statement, Davlin praised Palmatier for “serving Springfield and his country in the name of freedom.” Palmatier’s father, David Palmatier, told the Associated Press his son hadn’t wanted to go to Iraq.

As of Wednesday, 1,499 members of the military have been killed in Iraq since the U.S. attacked nearly two years ago.

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