The Rockford area has made national headlines for all sorts of reasons.

Do you remember these national news stories coming from our own backyard?


  • Pixland, ThinkStock

    High School Wrestling Mishap Ends in Amputation

    In 2011, Heriberto Avila from Belvidere North High Schooler woke up to the shocking news that his left leg was amputated. It happened because of an accident during a high school wrestling match. Instead of looking at lawsuits, after healing, Heriberto met his opponent Sean and the two of them found solace in each other. Heriberto did not hold a grudge, there were no hard feelings and he proved that an accident is just that... an accident.

  • ThinkStock

    Rockford College Opens It's Doors to Men

    The Rockford College you know today wasn't always a co-ed school. In the fall of 1942, Rockford College opened it's doors to men as a result of the war and the shortage of trained engineers.

  • ThinkStock

    Jack McCullough Freed From Prison After Wrongfully Accused

    In April of 2016, Jack McCullough, a 76-year-old, was serving a life sentence for the 1957 murder of 7-year-old Maria Ridulph. After finding clear and convincing evidence that proved he was in Rockford and not Sycamore where the murder took place, he was freed from prison.

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    Train Derailed In Rockford, Leading to One Death and Hundreds Being Evacuated

    In June of 2009, a cargo train derailed in Rockford which caused a massive explosion. Six were injured and one woman lost her life. 600 homes were asked to evacuate.

  • Graham Prentice, ThinkStock

    Severe Weather, Fairdale Tornado

    It was just over a year ago that tornadoes ripped through the Midwest, killing two in Fairdale and tearing down the small rural town.