Rochelle

Vicki Snyder-Chura / Rochelle Twp High School

One Rochelle-area teenager used the occasion of Veterans Day to honor his great-grandfather by sharing an important part of their family's history.

Rochelle Township High School Senior John Combs spent only a few Veterans Days with his great-grandfather, who died 11 years ago. But it could have been much worse for his family. Combs turned a class assignment into an opportunity to write an essay about his great-grandfather James Combs and how he was mistaken for a ghost during World War II.

WNIJ

DeKalb and Rochelle may be in the running for a massive new auto manufacturing plant. Toyota and Mazda announced they are teaming up to build a $1.5 billion factory in the U.S. but didn’t specify the site.

State Rep. Tom Demmer, R-Dixon, says he knows state and local economic-development officials are working on a code-named project that meets the same specifications of the Toyota/Mazda plan. 

Demmer says he’s not surprised that DeKalb and Rochelle are contenders. He said both of the cities within his legislative district have what a manufacturer of that size needs.

Chase Cavanaugh/WNIJ

A group of Rochelle residents is being recognized for their engineering work at the Illinois State Fair. 

Back in May, a class of Rochelle middle- and high-school students used a 3-D printer to build a prosthetic hand for local farmer Jack Hubbard.  He had lost the arm in a mechanical accident, and the new hand now lets him avoid his bulky work prosthesis at home and play more easily with his kids. 

Chase Cavanaugh/WNIJ

The Rochelle community used a three-dimensional printer to give a local farmer and mechanic a new prosthetic arm. 

Jake Hubbard lost the use of his left arm in 2013, when an 1,100-pound tire fell on him in a mechanical accident. He was able to acquire an artificial limb for work hours, but he took it off in everyday settings.

Vic Worthington, the technical-lab teacher at Rochelle Middle School, attends the same church as Hubbard. He recalls when a child asked Hubbard about the stump, covered in a surgical sleeve. 

wnij

Nippon Sharyo will lay off 100 employees from its factory in Rochelle.  The rail car manufacturer based its decision on a complication with one of its prototype cars, along with other business considerations. 

Nippon Sharyo says its factory will continue operations so it can meet deadlines for current projects.  The company has operated in Rochelle since 2012.  

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