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Local News: Former Kenosha Political Activist Passes; Baby Deaths Probed

Former Kenosha County Board Supervisor Edwin Andersen and his wife, Angelina, in an undated photo. Mr. Andersen died Thursday, his wife, last year.

A former Kenosha County Board member who was given credit for helping to propel Les Aspin's political career died Thursday. Edwin Andersen was 92. Andersen served as Aspin's Kenosha County campaign manager when Aspin ran for Congress in the 1st District Democratic primary in 1970 against Doug LaFollette. Aspin lost by a couple dozen votes. When the notoriously thrifty Aspin refused to pay for a recount out of his own pocket, Andersen raised the money and the Marquette University economics professor wound up winning. In the general election, Aspin went on to beat the Republican incumbent, then won re-election 11 times. He eventually resigned to become President Clinton's defense secretary and died of a stroke within a year. For most of his professional career, Andersen worked in public relations and advertising. He served three terms on the Kenosha County Board. Andersen's wife of 65 years preceded him in death last year. Funeral arrangements are pending, according to his son, Martin. Andersen died in Menominee Falls, where family members live. 


Kenosha Police are investigating the deaths of two infants that occurred a day apart this week. On Wednesday, emergency personnel responded to the 5300 blk. of 25th Ave. for a report of a one year-old child not breathing. The baby was pronounced dead at the scene. Then on Thursday, a call came in of a five month-old child not breathing in the 1500 blk. of 30th Ave. Paramedics were unsuccessful in attempting to revive the baby. Autopsies are pending in both cases. The calls are reminiscent of a cluster of three infant deaths that occurred in the city last year. One infant died as the result of a documented medical condition, while the other two deaths went unexplained and were chalked up to sudden infant death syndrome. The infant that died from illness had loose family ties with one of the other babies, police said, but no direct causal link was ever established.