This week's top stories

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  • MCHI nurses Kellie Ommert, left, and Jamie Dibbern were joined by a large group of hospital personnel and volunteers to help distribute 360 COVID vaccines Thursday in Aurora.
    MCHI nurses Kellie Ommert, left, and Jamie Dibbern were joined by a large group of hospital personnel and volunteers to help distribute 360 COVID vaccines Thursday in Aurora.
  • In a girls-against-boys team battle at practice, sixth graders Jillian Stromer (left), Tajel Lents, Keri Wagoner and Caitlin Salmon join together to go over a bonus question.
    In a girls-against-boys team battle at practice, sixth graders Jillian Stromer (left), Tajel Lents, Keri Wagoner and Caitlin Salmon join together to go over a bonus question.
  • HPC’s Hunter Gress qualified for his second state wrestling championship appearance with a second place effort at the D-1 district meet in Weeping Water.
    HPC’s Hunter Gress qualified for his second state wrestling championship appearance with a second place effort at the D-1 district meet in Weeping Water.
  • Fire crews worked to extinguish the blaze for more than three hours last Tuesday, as seen above.
    Fire crews worked to extinguish the blaze for more than three hours last Tuesday, as seen above.
  • Allison Crist holds up her 73rd foster dog, Huckleberry.
    Allison Crist holds up her 73rd foster dog, Huckleberry.
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Vaccine rollout targets elderly
Hamilton County took “another great step forward” last week in efforts to move beyond the pandemic, as more than 350 mostly elderly residents received the first of a two-shot vaccine as part of a community COVID clinic at the Bremer Center.
The Central District Health Department provided the vaccines in a well-organized process facilitated by Memorial Community Health. By the end of the day, a total of 360 vaccines had been given.

High Plains bringing momentum to Omaha
HPC’s wrestlers showed up and came through in its biggest moment Saturday without any heartbreak. 
The Storm had four wrestlers competing at Saturday’s D-1 district meet Saturday in Weeping Water and all four of those punched tickets to this week’s state wrestling championships. 
Lance Russell, Javier Marino, Wyatt Urkoski and Hunter Gress all survived elimination and are part of the 896 field of wrestlers that qualified for state.

Aurora Middle School Quiz Bowl teams help students gain confidence
Aurora Middle School’s Quiz Bowl teams showcase a number of students in sixth through eighth grades who all have common goals -- to win, but have fun doing it.
Though sixth grade competes in the elementary division with fifth graders (from Aurora and across the state), and seventh and eighth compete together in a separate division, they all still bring Husky Pride to the middle school they call home. 
So why did they choose to join the Quiz Bowl team?
“Well, for me, I was part of it last year and I had a fun experience so that’s why I joined it again,” said sixth grader Lincoln Kemling. 

Local fire chiefs reflect on cold morning fire
As treacherous cold temperatures set in on the morning of Feb. 9 the Aurora Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department was dispatched to a confirmed, fully-involved, structure fire. 
The structure was an Aurora home, located at 1217 H Street, belonging to Donald (DJ) and Kelsey Adams. DJ, a paramedic firefighter for the Aurora Fire Department, was home with his four children when the fire was discovered. 
“We were dispatched at about 7:02 in the morning yesterday for a structure fire, report of smoke in the attic and fire, or flames were seen,” Aurora Fire Chief Tom Cox reported the next day. “We arrived on scene to quite a bit of smoke. The attic was fairly well involved.”

Aurora resident finds her purpose through puppy love
Some people may have a few dogs in their home throughout their lives, but Allison Crist has had 73 pups of all types come through her door since 2017.
For the past three years, the Lincoln native has worked to foster dogs until they can find their forever homes. Her journey started after her mother, who lives in Lincoln, started fostering for Dolly’s Legacy.
“The first animal she had I went with her to an adoption appointment,” she recalled. “I said, ‘Well I live in Aurora, can I do it?’ They said absolutely and that’s how I got involved.”

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