Vietnam veterans honored at city council

Fire Department to receive new equipment


Rachel Cormier

Second ward Alderwoman Barb Larson (left) and Fourth Ward Alderman Greg Perkins shake the hands of local Vietnam veterans during the City Council meeting Monday at the DeKalb Public Library. The veterans were honored in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of National Vietnam War Veterans Day on Wednesday. (Rachel Cormier | Northern Star)

By Rachel Cormier, News Reporter

DeKALB – Local Vietnam veterans were honored at the Monday DeKalb City Council meeting, commemorating National Vietnam War Veterans Day on the 50th anniversary of the day U.S. troops left Vietnam, March 29.

Veterans from the DeKalb American Legion, the DeKalb County 40 et 8 (a veteran honor organization) and the DeKalb AMVETS were recognized and each issued a proclamation that highlighted their service from Mayor Cohen Barnes and the city council.

The DeKalb Fire Department will see major upgrades for its front-line vehicles. Three new ZOLL cardiac monitors, devices that monitor heartbeats, were approved to outfit the department’s emergency vehicles, and the department was recommended to purchase six large-scale column lifts meant to ease the frequent and rising costs of repairs.

The column lifts act similarly to a large hydraulic lift with a mobile approach and would lift up to 111,000 lbs., sufficient for the department’s extension ladder truck’s weight.

“When it comes to major repairs – oftentimes, the front line vehicles are out for a while, and we have to scramble for a day or two,” City Manager Bill Nicklas said.

Past repairs have totaled $87,000 in the 2021 fiscal year and have increased to approximately $92,000 in 2022. The column purchases would additionally include hiring a qualified mechanic, who would be paid through the Public Works department balance, to ensure routine repairs for the first-line vehicles.

In downtown DeKalb, a new venue for banquets and parties, Cuatro Amigos Venue, was approved for a grant for outdoor renovations. The owners of the Cuatro Amigos Venue, who also own El Jimador Mexican Grill, have begun plans for renovating the former Lincoln Inn at 240 E. Lincoln Highway. The owners will incorporate improved outdoor seating including a “limestone facade,” install additional exterior lighting and add new framing to the front part of the venue, according to city documents.