Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.
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ALEXANDRIA, Minn. — Tornado sirens sounded Monday night, July 17, as a severe thunderstorm rumbled through Douglas County. There were several reports of trees and branches that were blown down. Carlos Creek Winery was among the areas hit. So much debris was scattered about, the winery is asking for volunteers to help with cleanup. The work began at 8 a.m. Tuesday.
BRANDON, Minn. — A feud on Facebook led to a stabbing in Brandon Sunday night. At about 11 p.m. on July 2, the Douglas County Sheriff's Office received a call from a resident in Brandon reporting that Bailey Scott Zastrow, 18, had been stabbed in a home. Douglas County sheriff's deputies, North Ambulance and Brandon First Responders were dispatched to the scene, where deputies learned Zastrow had two non-life threatening stab wounds, one to his chest and one on his arm.
ALEXANDRIA, Minn.—Firefighters face something just as dangerous as flames and smoke. Cancer. The International Association of Firefighters estimates that roughly 60 percent of career firefighters will die from cancer. Firefighters are two to three times more likely to be diagnosed with cancer than the general public. By age 60, twice as many firefighters die from cancer than heart attacks, the biggest killer among most Americans. Volunteer firefighters in Douglas County know all about the risks.
ALEXANDRIA, Minn. — Alexandria is preparing for an invasion. A tiny beetle about a half-inch long could wipe out the most popular kind of tree in the city, ash trees. The emerald ash borer isn't here yet but it could arrive soon. It's already made deep inroads in Minnesota. Officials in the Twin Cities area are in the process of cutting down 60,000 beetle-infested trees and another 175,000 in private yards in the metro area are threatened.
ALEXANDRIA, Minn.—Former Alexandria resident Lee Urness of Prior Lake — an FBI agent who helped track down the nationwide serial killer who shot famous fashion designer Gianni Versace in 1997 — died Friday, May 19, at age 71. Urness, a 1964 graduate of Alexandria's Jefferson High School, worked as a deputy sheriff and in 1972, he began working at the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. He served as a special agent with the FBI Fugitive Task Force and was a member of the Minnesota Emergency Response Team or SWAT.
OSAKIS, Minn.—An investigation into credit card fraud and embezzlement from a creamery association in the north-central Minnesota town of Osakis has led to felony drug charges with three people charged in the cases.
OSAKIS, Minn. — The Osakis School District is now saying that an idea to have girls submit photos of themselves wearing their chosen prom dress in order to attend the April 22 event was "merely a suggestion," not an official action. Interim superintendent Randy Bergquist, who attended the school board's Feb. 13 meeting, said the photo requirement was a discussion item only and nothing was finalized. "The students are not going to have to submit a photo," he said. "That doesn't make sense — it's 2017."
LONG PRAIRIE, Minn. — A Long Prairie man who was convicted of first degree manslaughter for fatally striking his ex-wife with a shoe hammer was sentenced to 12½ years in prison. Craig Lamont Williams, 49, will serve the time at the St. Cloud Correctional Facility. During a hearing Wednesday, Feb. 1, Judge Douglas Anderson handed out the sentence, which is below the maximum penalty of 15 years, in Todd County District Court. Williams received credit for the three years and 164 days he's spent behind bars while his case was prosecuted.
A 48-year-old Alexandria man was arrested Tuesday after a narcotics search warrant was executed by the Douglas County SWAT Team on the 500 block of Sixth Ave. East in Alexandria. Authorities said they found about 77 grams of methamphetamine and more than $20,000 in cash of suspected drug proceeds, along with stolen property. Timothy Brockopp was arrested without incident and is being held at the Douglas County Jail awaiting formal charges.
ALEXANDRIA, Minn. — A perfect storm of circumstances last Friday, Nov. 18, created treacherous road conditions in the area — built-up patches of thick ice ruts that are still lingering around Douglas County. It made for bumpy, slippery patches on several roads, including Interstate 94, County Road 82, Highway 29 and several city streets. The patches were so thick and stuck to the surface that snow plows couldn't scrape them away. Here's what happened, according to Dave Robley, Douglas County highway engineer: