Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relay described as 'wonderful,' 'a great experience' by its enthused participants PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Tuesday, 20 September 2016 10:19



Ever worry so much about an upcoming event with so many variables which could go wrong that you end up waking up in the early darkness, staring at the ceiling and wondering how in the WORLD it's going to get pulled off with no missteps?

Yeah, well, the local organizers of the Scott County leg of the Indiana State Bicentennial Torch Relay had a few nights like that.

In fact, when Friday, September 16, finally dawned, several on the committee were already up and going, despite the fact that the state entourage wasn't expected until 1 p.m. at Underwood.

And when that group pulled in, it looked like half the Indiana State Police (ISP) force was crowding into the parking lot of the old Underwood grocery store.

One of the most composed persons milling about the area was the first torch bearer, Ed Cozart. He wore a colorful version of early 1800s wear instead of the printed white pull-over shirt and the yellow hat and jacket distributed by the State Bicentennial Commission for all torchbearers. And on his red coat was his official Bicentennial torchbearer pin.

The group took a few minutes to eat box lunches ordered from a downtown Scottsburg cafe and delivered by the local Bicentennial Committee and then hopped back into their vehicles (or on some really snazzy ISP motorcycles), ready to roll once again. They'd spent the morning escorting torchbearers all around Clark County. Now, it was Scott County's turn.

Cozart climbed aboard the large fire engine, the department's 2013 E-ONE quint with fireman John Lord at the wheel, and away they went, clipping off the miles pretty quickly, and that was a good thing. The torch and the last torchbearer was to be at Johnson Elementary School at 2:30 p.m. No, make that HAD to be there.

Cozart, always a cordial fellow, handed off the torch to retired Scottsburg High School (SHS) basketball coach Jim Barley. Jim, a terrific coach and a nice guy, trotted it north on U.S. Highway 31 past a lot of people who came out along the highway to shout encouragement. Jim gave the torch to young Landon Campbell, a SHS freshman and the third torchbearer.

Landon never talks much and reluctantly said his experience was “....just walking the torch past the high school.” He didn't mention the rabid crowd of family members and friends who yelled happily as he completed his lap.

Landon gave the torch to Erick Mays, who had his own groupies consisting of his very proud grandmother, wife and two young sons, one of whom burst into tears because he could not accompany Dad on his route. There were already some tears among that group because Erick was carrying the torch for his late grandfather, Frank Mays. “If he had been able to be there, he would have proudly carried the torch,” Erick said later. In fact, Erick said he felt his granddad's presence “...right by my side...” as he walked to Ace Hardware to hand over the torch to LeRoy Williams.

In a few words, LeRoy is a character. So naturally his mode of transportation was a little, er, odd. Unusual. Crazy! LeRoy with his son-in-law as pilot rode in an oversized grocery cart the pair of them created. Guess what: It is the only grocery cart that will be used in the relay! How about that!

LeRoy zipped to Hyland Street on State Road 56 (McClain Avenue) where Sue Jones was waiting with several of her family members and her seven great-grandchildren across from Scottsburg Elementary School grounds. After a quick pic with her kids, Sue was supposed to climb aboard a golf cart her son Mike was driving. Instead, she walked for a bit and then rode for a bit, but she made sure the last few hundred feet were completed on foot as the 83-year-old walked the torch into downtown Scottsburg where Scottsburg Mayor Bill Graham was waiting for her with a big hug and a kiss.

Mayor Bill climbed on the fire department's 1934 fire engine driven by Scottsburg Fire Chief James Richey, the original one local firemen used in the department's early years, and was driven around the downtown courthouse square, winding up once again on the north side. Mayor Bill offered a few words, saying how grateful Scott County was to be on the torch relay. Iva Gasaway, President of the Scott County Council, also welcomed the Indianapolis people to the county. “We're very happy to participate in this important event,” she commented.

The torch was handed to County Councilman Raymond Jones, the next torchbearer. Raymond once led the department as fire chief, so he was quite happy to get on board the old fire engine. The engine stopped by the elementary school property once again, to the cheers of lots of excited elementary youngsters let out so they could witness the exchange and see the torch. “The whole experience was an honor,” stated Raymond.

At that point, cancer survivor Dustin Houchens was scheduled to be the next torchbearer, but Houchins was unable to participate, so alternate April Ramoni accepted the torch and carried it to the Sunoco station at the corner of S.R. 56 and U.S. 31. Ramoni was one of the artists who painted Scott County symbols on “Scott,” the county's Bicentennial bison won through her efforts earlier this year. There, veteran Al Riggle was waiting in a 1943 Willys jeep.

That jeep carried the retired USAF officer to Scott Memorial Hospital, where Riggle met up with former sheriff Gordon Julian, who, with wife Millie and driver Deputy Jac Sanders, carried the torch all the way to Austin High School, where Julian and his brothers had graduated many years ago.

As the Sheriff's Department Hummer pulled up in front of the school complex, the AHS band played the National Anthem and then the AHS Eagles' fight song. Yelling, screaming and clapping, the entire population of the high school and middle school joined the celebration. Balloons were released as Gordon handed the torch to Rick Rigel, a former coach and a darned good math teacher.

Rigel headed north on U.S. 31 and, in front of the original high school building, now Austin Upper Elementary School, and lots and lots of enthusiastic youngsters, he handed the torch to yet another good and memorable AHS teacher, retired educator Ron Atkins.

Ron paused briefly for photos and then turned north, jogging toward the corner of U.S. 31 and State Road 256, where retired Austin clerk-treasurer Clara Adkins was waiting.

Holding it carefully, Clara walked the torch to her old workplace, Austin City Hall, there receiving the congratulations of Mayor Dillo Bush, several city councilmen and city employees.

A shiny, huge fire engine supplied by the Jennings Township Volunteer Fire Department and manned by firemen Jason Campbell and Greg Hammond was waiting as was the only couple honored as torchbearers, the Rev. Steve Gwaltney and wife Pam of Grace Covenant Church of God. They climbed aboard, and off they went to Frontline Ministries, located in the old Austin Methodist Church along State Road 256.

There, the Gwaltneys handed the torch to Andie Myers, now a sixth grader at Scottsburg Middle School. With an elated Andie aboard, the firemen headed to Johnson Elementary, her alma mater and where she earned her citizenship certificate awarded by the General Charles Scott Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. There, the state entourage thanked her and the firemen and hurried on to their first torchbearer for Jennings County, waiting on State Road 3 near Paris Crossing.

“It was a lot of fun, a lot of fun,” said a still-excited Andie at the Bicentennial Bash held in downtown Scottsburg on Friday night.

Scott County was also praised by state coordinators. Having experienced some awkward moments in other counties, torch entourage members had nothing but praise for local participation. Scott County and its participants stayed on schedule. Advised one of the ISP officers in the entourage, “You guys were terrific!”

Not only was the whole relay definitely a lot of fun, it gave Scott Countians a chance to honor some remarkable people who have contributed to the betterment of the entire county, said Bicentennial Committee Chairman Brandon Polley. He thanked all of the torchbearers and those 60 some people nominated. He also gave a special nod to local committee members Adrian Smallwood, Jennifer Spicer and Jessica Jones for their help in making the torch visit a success.

For those unable to celebrate on September 16, there is a way to get a souvenir of the event. The local committee has several nice torch relay t-shirts available at the office of the Scott County Visitors Commission, which sponsored the torch's visit.

Interested in getting a shirt? Call the Visitors Commission at 812-752-9211 or visit the office at Scottsburg Heritage Station on North Main Street, Scottsburg.




Warrior Football Team Tames Southside Homeschool Wolfpack PDF Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 14 September 2016 09:09





Scottsburg Warrior football came back after their loss against Southside Homeschool Wolfpack last week to play Crawford County High School this past Friday, September 9. During the first quarter, Scottsburg opened an enormous lead against Crawford County. Kaden Sparkman connected on a pass from QB Bradley Whitler for 85 yards and a touchdown. Ethan Richey scampered for two touchdown runs during the opening quarter. Crawford County could only muster up 6 points from a touchdown by Crawford County’s #34 to make the score at the end of the first quarter 24-6.

The Wolfpack shut out the Warriors during the second quarter, but did not score enough themselves to break Scottsburg’s strong lead. Crawford County’s #10 completed a pass to #28 for a touchdown to make the score 24-12.

Scottsburg’s Safety Christian Smiley said, “Defensively, our secondary gave up too many explosive plays that gave them (Crawford County) field position to score.”

Both teams were scoreless in the third quarter and the fourth quarter looked like it was going to be the same, but Warrior Trent Potter completed a pass to Skylar Combs for the final touchdown with less than two minutes to go in the game. Scottsburg’s Casey Smith continued to show a strong leg after breaking Scottsburg High School’s Field Goal record last week against Southside by completing a 37 yard field goal during the first quarter and going 4/4 on extra point attempts that brought the Warriors to its victory for 31-12 win.

Warrior football’s record now stands at 2-2 for the 2016 season. Scottsburg varsity football has a week off of play before their next game against Oldenburg Academy at Warrior Field on Sept. 23.

Coach Kyle Mullins responded to this with, “There can’t be a week off. We have to continue the process of getting better every day. We’re playing Oldenburg Academy that is a single A school and a fairly new program, but tough-nosed. The team, like us, is wanting to establish its program and it’s a good opportunity for us to correct our mistakes.”

The leading passer for the game was Bradley Whitler with 102 yards, and the leading rusher was Hunter Myers with 177 yards.




Angry customer charged with battery after alleged scuffle at local store PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Wednesday, 14 September 2016 09:04



A woman who allegedly became angry while trying to return recently-purchased cell phones at the Scottsburg Wal-Mart on Sunday, September 4, wound up being charged with Level 5 and Level 6 felonies for allegedly fighting with a policeman and two EMS technicians.

Michael Taleb, 41, was found by Lt./Detective Mike Nichols and Patrolman Travis Rutherford in the store's electronics department. One of the store managers explained to the officers that Taleb tried to return cell phones to the store. When she was told that the 15-day return limit had expired on the phones, Taleb “...began yelling and screaming about the policy...,” the probable cause affidavit related.

When she reportedly refused to leave the store, the manager had an employee call 9-1-1 and request police assistance.

Officers attempted to calm the woman and then called for Scott County EMS to come when she stated she felt ill. When told the ambulance would take her to Scott Memorial Hospital, Taleb apparently became upset again and refused to get into the ambulance, saying she wanted to go to University of Louisville Hospital instead.

Told she would have to go to the local hospital first as a matter of EMS policy, the woman still refused to be helped by the technicians and stated she would not leave the store either. At that point, Lt. Nichols attempted to handcuff the woman, but, in the struggle that followed, both EMS technicians and Lt. Nichols were allegedly struck or scratched by her.

When Lt. Nichols walked Taleb to his patrol car, he said the woman fell. EMS staff assisted Taleb off the ground and onto a stretcher. She was transported to Scott Memorial where her handcuffs were removed by Deputy Jac Sanders so she could be examined by emergency room staff. He had to “forcefully” place them back on her, and the woman was taken to the Scott County Security Center after being released by a doctor.

Lt. Nichols noted that the woman's 13-year-old daughter was recording portions of the incident. The girl and her mother's possessions were released to her older brother.

A copy of the Wal-Mart store security video and tapes of the store manager's 9-1-1 call and two 9-1-1 calls made by Taleb have been obtained as evidence by the police department.

Taleb was charged with two Level 5 battery charges for hurting Lt. Nichols and one of the EMS technicians. A Level 6 battery charge was added for the injury she allegedly caused to the second EMS technician. A Level 6 felony resisting law enforcement is also among her charges as are two misdemeanor charges of criminal trespass and disorderly conduct.

Taleb appeared for her initial hearing in Scott Circuit Court on Wednesday, September 7. A preliminary plea of not guilty was entered for her, and her case was assigned to a public defender. An initial jury trial date of December 13 was scheduled.

Bail was set at $10,000 by corporate surety bond or $1,000 cash. As conditions of her bail, Taleb was advised that she was not to contact either Lt. Nichols or the EMS technician hurt in the scuffle nor was she to go onto Wal-Mart property again. Judge Roger Duvall set a hearing to review her bail on Tuesday, September 13.




Take precautions against bites.... Health officials report Scott County mosquito pools positive for West Nile Virus PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Wednesday, 14 September 2016 09:02


Even though it's September, which is certainly not the height of summer, don't forget to use bug spray when going out to work in the yard or garden.

Especially since local health officials announced this week that Scott County has joined 28 other Indiana counties in having mosquito pools test positively for West Nile Virus (WNV).

No human cases of the virus in the county have been reported, and this is the first sign of West Nile in the county this year. Mosquitoes become carriers of WNV when they bite an infected bird. If a dead bird is found, wear gloves to dispose of the body.

Even though Indiana may experience some cooler weather now, these temperatures won't kill mosquitoes. Only a good freeze can halt the cycle. But adult female mosquitoes have been known to seek shelter from the cold in basements, crawl spaces and other areas and remain dormant until spring. Mosquitoes which have tested positively for WNV will remain infected – and therefore threats – as long as they live. Spraying such areas for the air-borne insects will help, but right now their numbers are at their peak. It takes only one bite to make a human sick.

A total of 45 states in the continental United States and the District of Columbia have reported WNV to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) thus far this year. In those states, 537 WNV cases in humans have been identified.

West Nile Virus was first discovered in Queens, New York, in 1999. Since that time, it has spread to nearly every state. A total of 2,060 human cases were diagnosed nationally in 2015. Of those, 119 people died of complications.

The virus usually results in a mild illness known as West Nile Fever. Fever, body aches, swollen glands and/or a rash can develop. A small number of individuals, however, can develop a more severe form of the disease. Encephalitis, meningitis and other neurological syndromes can occur, including what is called flaccid muscle paralysis. Arms and legs just refuse to work because of this more serious form.

According to the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH), there is no vaccine nor cure for West Nile Virus, but it can be prevented by taking some easy steps to avoid mosquito bites.

If possible, avoid being outdoors during the prime mosquito biting hours of dusk to dawn.

If you can't avoid being out, be sure to use insect repellent which contains DEET on exposed skin and thin clothing. Always follow label directions when applying such repellents.

Eliminate the bare skin so attractive to mosquitoes by wearing long sleeved tops and long pants when outside, especially between dusk and dawn.

Health officials are also asking residents to take steps to rid their properties of potential mosquito breeding grounds. These can include:

? Repair any failed septic system.

?Drill holes in the bottoms of recycling containers left outside to allow drainage of standing water.

?Keep grass short and shrubbery trimmed.

?Dispose of old tires, tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots or other unused containers that can hold water.

?Clean clogged roof gutters, particularly if leaves tend to plus up downspouts.

?Aerate ornamental pools or stock them with fish which will eat mosquito larvae.

Continue to be vigilant and protect young children and older people especially by taking steps to prevent bites.


Get ready for fun! 2016 Bicentennial Blast follows Torch Relay on Friday, offers free fun downtown PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Wednesday, 14 September 2016 08:59


Not everyone is going to get to witness the Indiana State Bicentennial Torch Relay in Scott County on Friday, September 16.

Day workers in businesses won't have an easy time seeing some of the 17 local people in the torch relay, since the relay is scheduled from 1 to 2:30 p.m.

But everyone can come and enjoy the Bicentennial Blast on the courtyard square in downtown Scottsburg that evening from 5 to 10 p.m.

The torch relay is scheduled to take place along U.S. Highway 31, State Road 56 West and State Road 256 early Friday afternoon. The county's torch relay team includes Clara Adkins, Ron Atkins, Jim Barley, Landon Campbell, Ed Cozart, Mayor Bill Graham, Pam and Steve Gwaltney, Dustin Houchens, Sue Jones, Raymond Jones, Gordon Julian, Frank Mays, Andie Myers, Rick Rigel, Al Riggle and LeRoy Williams. Frank Mays, who is deceased, will be represented by his grandson, Eric Mays.

Here is the relay schedule:

• 1:00 p.m.: Ed Cozart accepts the torch from state organizers at the Scott/Clark County line. He'll ride in a fire truck along U.S. Highway 31 to Scottsburg.

• 1:09 p.m.: Retired coach Jim Barley accepts the torch from Cozart at the entrance to The Rock at 725 U.S. 31 South just south of Scottsburg High School (SHS). The coach plans to walk.

• 1:14 p.m.: SHS freshman Landon Campbell takes the torch from Coach Barley at the first entrance to the high school grounds, 701 U.S. 31 South. Landon will be on foot.

• 1:20 p.m.: Eric Mays will walk in memory of his grandfather, Frank Mays from Lon's Doughnuts, 325 U.S. 31 South to Scotts Ace Hardware's entrance off the highway.

• 1:26 p.m.: LeRoy Williams in his motorized grocery cart will accept the torch at Ace Hardware and take it to North Hyland Street and the property of Scottsburg Elementary School on State Road 56 West (West McClain Avenue).

• 1:30 p.m.: Sue Jones takes the torch from the elementary school parking lot and will head east to Scottsburg City Hall, 2 East McClain Ave.

• 1:34 p.m.: Scottsburg Mayor Bill Graham accepts the torch from Jones, climbs aboard the 1934 fire engine owned by the city's fire department and takes the torch around the courthouse square. City and county officials will be gathered on the square for a brief ceremony.

• 1:47 p.m.: Councilman Raymond Jones will take the torch from the courtyard to the elementary school's parking lot. He too will use the 1934 fire engine as a means of transportation.

• 1:51 p.m.: Dustin Houchens accepts the torch from Jones, walking it west on S.R. 56 to the intersection of S.R. 56 and U.S. 31.

• 1:57 p.m.: Veteran Al Riggle will get the torch and carry it to Scott Memorial Hospital, 1451 U.S. 31 North. Riggle will be in a 1943 Willys Jeep.

• 2:02 p.m.: Former sheriff Gordon Julian climbs aboard the 1934 fire truck and carries the torch from the hospital to the entrance to Austin High School.

• 2:09 p.m.: Former Austin girls' coach and educator Rick Rigel walks the torch from the high school entrance to 170 South U.S. 31, which is located past the Scott School District 1 administration building and in front of Austin Upper Elementary School, the original Austin High School.

• 2:15 p.m.: Retired educator Ron Atkins heads on foot with the torch to the intersection of U.S. 31 and State Road 256 (Main Street).

• 2:19 p.m.: Retired Austin clerk-treasurer and former county councilman Clara Adkins will walk the torch west on S.R. 256 to Austin City Hall, 80 West Main St.

• 2:23 p.m.: The Rev. Steve Gwaltney and his wife and ministerial partner Pam will accept the torch and will ride on a fire engine provided by the Jennings Township Volunteer Fire Department (JTVFD).

• 2:28 p.m.: Andie Myers, now a sixth grader at Scottsburg Middle School but who attended Johnson Elementary School, will climb aboard the JTVFD engine and ride to Johnson Elementary with the torch.

At the school, the entourage will drive in back of the building. There, Andie will hand the torch to county relay coordinators Jennifer Spicer and Jessica Jones. The torch will continue its journey east in a Subaru driven by 9-1-1 Director Greg Ramoni. Ramoni will hand over the torch at Paris Crossing on State Road 3 to Jennings County relay coordinators and that county's first participant.

The torch relay team selected from over 60 nominees represents community involvement and leadership, great teachers, high achievers, outstanding coaches and courageous survivors. And they have a special invitation to attend the evening's Bicentennial Blast.

Starting at 4 p.m., organizations and churches are welcome to set up booths in the courtyard. Booths, food trucks and free inflatables for youngsters will open at 5 p.m. The Scott County Arts Council will offer free face painting and have the county's Bicentennial Bison on hand for people to admire. The Arts Council's Bicentennial barn quilt, which many local people helped paint, will also be exhibited. The barn quilt, painted on wood, will be sealed and affixed to the barn on the grounds of the Scott County Heritage Center and Museum.

Free wooden nickles will be handed out at the Scott County Visitors Commission booth. They'll have Bicentennial t-shirts for sale as well. Disabled American Veterans will have information available for veterans and their families.

Volunteers with the county museum will be selling Indiana t-shirts and limited edition Bicentennial Christmas ornaments. Several other organizations have expressed interest in setting up booths, said Brandon Polley, chairman of the local Bicentennial Committee.

“We welcome all groups to set up booths that express their Bicentennial spirit,” he stated. Those needing more information can reach him at 812-752-9211 at the Scott County Visitors Commission, which is sponsoring the night of family fun.

Ed Cozart, a tall tale spinner as well as one of the torch bearers, will present brief glimpses of local history at the gazebo twice during the early evening.

At 7:30 p.m., all of the torch bearers will be recognized and asked to say a few words about their experiences along the path of the torch.

Around 8 p.m., a free family movie, “Turbo,” will be shown. The story of the speedy snail has a lot of Indiana influence in it, said Polley. During the movie, people can get 10 cent drinks and free popcorn, compliments of Indiana Farm Bureau.

Moviegoers should bring lawn chairs and blankets as well as jackets, bug spray and flashlights.

“We hope a lot of people will spend their Friday evening with us on the 16th,” said Polley.




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