Nightly lane closures by INDOT continuing on Interstate 65 south of Scottsburg PDF Print E-mail
Written by Marty Randall   
Wednesday, 11 November 2015 08:24

Single lanes are being closed on Interstate 65 in the area of the Brownstown Road overpass being reconstructed by a contractor of the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT).

Crashes on Interstate 65 in Scott County last Tuesday sends severely injured driver to hospital PDF Print E-mail
Written by Marty Randall   
Tuesday, 10 November 2015 12:10



A crash on Interstate 65 occurring on Tuesday, November 3, left the seriously-injured driver in need of immediate medical attention.

Four officers from the Sheriff's Department responded to a dispatch that went out at 6:19 p.m. in response to 9-1-1 calls from Interstate 65 on Tuesday evening.

Chief Deputy Don Campbell, deputies Shawn Mayer and Jac Sanders and Reserve Deputy B.J. Best raced to the scene, about two miles south of Scottsburg in the northbound lanes. They were joined by Trooper Tracy Spencer of the Indiana State Police, Sellersburg post, Scott County EMS technicians and First Responders from the Scottsburg Volunteer Fire Department.

What they found was like a scene out of a horror movie. According to what Trp. Spencer learned from two semi-truck drivers, Randy Wolke, 58,Coon Rapids, Mn., and Michael Smith, 23, Indianapolis, a black 2009 Toyota Corona driven by Charles Oatten, 20, Westland, Mi., caused the horrific accident.

Oatten had been driving southbound when, for an unknown reason, his car went out of control and crossed over the grass median, entering the northbound lanes. It then struck Wolke's 2013 Kenworth semi-truck head-on.

That impact apparently sent it careening toward Smith's 2015 Peterbilt rig, striking that semi's rear tandem wheels and knocking them away.

The Corona was pushed around 100 feet north and then came to rest in the median.

Several calls were made by I-65 motorists to the 9-1-1 Center, and officers and emergency aid staffs responded quickly. Their subsequent actions saved Oatten's life at the scene.

He was horribly hurt, his arm and shoulder ripped from his body. Pressure was applied to the wound, while First Responders located the missing limb about 50 feet away from the car and preserved it. The limb went along with the unconscious Oatten in the medical helicopter, which landed on the closed northbound lanes and took Oatten directly to University of Louisville's trauma center.

On Wednesday, November 4, the Michigan man was listed in critical condition. No further information about Oatten's condition has been released.

Surprisingly, neither semi-truck driver was injured in the mishap, which happened on a stretch of I-65 not protected by an emergency fence barrier designed to prevent cars and pickup trucks from crossing over and entering opposite lanes.

A cause of the crash was still being pinpointed by the ISP post, which sent a crash reconstruction specialist to the site.

All of this activity shut down the northbound lanes until after 10 p.m. At one point around 8 p.m., even southbound traffic was halted.

The ensuing actions caused quite a backup on I-65, with some traffic being diverted to U.S. Highway 31 at the Henryville interchange.

Family, friends of D1 retired teacher Bob Cathcart to say goodbye today PDF Print E-mail
Written by Marty Randall   
Tuesday, 10 November 2015 12:05



He usually had a smile on his face and a greeting on his lips, more than likely a light-hearted, “How you doing, kiddo?”

When he was tending the store, Cathcart and Company in Scottsburg, Robert “Bob” Cathcart could be counted on slipping out of the shop for some refreshment and conversation with friends at Hancock's Drugstore a couple of times a day.

The 80-year-old retired teacher and businessman passed away on Saturday, November 7, at the Greg and Noreen Wells Hospice Care Center in Bonnyman, Ky. Bob and wife Nancy Napier Cathcart had retired to Perry County, Ky., some years ago after Nancy, also a longtime teacher for Scott School District 1, finally left the classroom for good.

Bob was the son of the late Lynn William Cathcart and Kathleen Perry Cathcart. His dad was a barber, and it was in his shop that Bob started a coin and jewelry shop on North Second Street in Austin. Adept at business, Bob moved the shop to Crothersville and then, finally, to its Scottsburg location at the corner of West McClain Avenue and South Railroad Street.

He had a good time operating the store, becoming extremely familiar with the fluctuating values of coins, precious metals and gems. The couple's son, Robbie, grew into the business, becoming his dad's partner. He now operates the Scottsburg store.

What set Bob Cathcart apart, though, aside from his perpetually friendly manner, was his ability to teach all types of mathematics to scores of Austin High School students over the years. He was a math whizz. Bob got his undergraduate degree from Cumberland College in 1963 and joined the Austin High School staff that same year. He received his master's from Purdue University in 1970.

Bob handled a large teaching load and the shop for years, also serving as the District 1 athletic director from 1976 to 1981. He also stepped in and served as assistant principal for the high school in 1986-87.

Bob retired in 1992 and then devoted all his attention to the store before he and Nancy retired to Kentucky to be close to other family members.

He was a U.S. Army Reserve veteran and a member of Austin Christian Church.

His survivors include his wife of many years; son Robert “Robbie” L. Cathcart and his special friend Stephanie Sears; a son, Gabriel Cathcart; a sister, Carolyn Johnson and husband Robert; and sister-in-law, Von Boggs.

Calling and a celebration of life was conducted on Monday evening, November 9, at Maggard's Mountain View Chapel in Hazard, Ky.

Locally, visitation was held on Tuesday evening, November 10, at the Buchanan Funeral Home in Austin.

The funeral will be conducted at 11 a.m. today (Wednesday) at the Buchanan Funeral Home. The Rev. Don Watts will officiate.

Cremation has been requested by the family.

Memorial donations may be arranged through the staff of the funeral home to benefit the Napier-Pollard Relay for Life Fund.

Funeral service is conducted Sunday for Mayor Graham's retired 'right-hand man' PDF Print E-mail
Written by Marty Randall   
Tuesday, 10 November 2015 12:00




Calling and the funeral service for Sue E. Barnett-Amick, 63, Scottsburg, was conducted at the Collins Funeral Home on Sunday, November 8.

A quiet and efficient person with a quick grin, Sue died at her home on Wednesday, November 4. She was 63.

Sue was the indispensable, “right-hand man” for Scottsburg Mayor Bill Graham since she was hired as his executive assistant and started work on January 1, 1988. Mayor Graham became famous for advising people with questions to “...see Sue...” for answers or for help with their problems. She had retired from the position this past June 19.

She was a native of Campbellsville, Ky., and graduated from DuPont Manuel High School in Louisville.

During her many years in the Mayor's Office, Sue had her hand on the pulse of the community. If she didn't have the information needed, she knew where to go to get it.

During her years with Mayor Graham, Sue became involved with a wide variety of projects and committees. Those included the Scottsburg Beautification Committee, Mayor's Good Neighbor Awards, Pig Roast in the Park, Scottsburg Courtyard Christmas Committee, Kids First Auction, Scott County Welfare to Work Committee, Committee for Building Quality Communities, Scott County Millennial Projects Committee, Austin Rural Enterprise Community grant-writing committee, Indiana Association of Cities and Towns, Scott County Community Clearinghouse building committee, Youth Speak Grant-Making Council, Scottsburg 2020, the Indiana Municipal Electric Association (IMEA) rodeo committee and the Scottsburg IMEA Rodeo Committee, Scott County Learning Exchange, American Red Cross Board and Scottsburg Emergency Management Board.

She was a recipient of the U.S. House of Representatives Outstanding Hoosier Citizen Award as well as a Scottsburg Mayor's Good Neighbor Award.

Her memberships included the Indiana Mayors Assistants Association, Scottsburg Kiwaniannes Club, Scott County Moose Family Center and Lodge 2324, Greater Scott County Chamber of Commerce Board and the Scott County Partnership Board. She served as the Scottsburg Water Board secretary and was a graduate of the local Chamber's Leadership Program. She was one of the first organizers of the annual “Day of Caring” sponsored by the United Way of Scott County. She was a local U.S. Census coordinator in 2000 and 2010. Her efforts also went toward the Hurricane Katrina Relief Project and the Henryville Tornado Relief program.

Her survivors include a son, Stephen Barnett and wife Becky of Louisville; her mother, Nettie Newton of Louisville; a brother, Ron Newton and wife Barbara of Louisville; and two grandchildren, Charlotte Mansur and Brendan Barnett.

The Rev. David Richie officiated at the local service. Cremation was requested, and a graveside service will be conducted at the Brockman Cemetery in Campbellsville, Ky., on Saturday, November 14, at 11 a.m. Memorial gifts may be arranged through the staff of the Collins Funeral Home to benefit Autism Speaks or by going to autismspeaks,org.

On-line condolences for the family may be expressed by visiting


City of Austin mourning shooting death of longtime downtown businessman John Turner PDF Print E-mail
Written by Marty Randall   
Tuesday, 10 November 2015 11:59


State police seeking information....

John Turner was one of the nicest, most honest businessmen in Southern Indiana.

When people visited his little hole-in-the-wall jewelry and coin shop on West Main Street in Austin, he was quick with a smile and a “Hi, how you doing today?” which quickly led to a “Just look around. We got a little of everything in here.”

Austin residents who knew John and his close-knit family were devastated to learn that John died of an apparent gunshot to the head, inflicted by a person or persons unknown, on Saturday afternoon, November 7. Indiana State Police (ISP) with the Sellersburg post are investigating the murder and subsequent robbery.

The incident apparently occurred some time after 3:30 p.m. when an as-yet unidentified person entered the tiny shop at 61 West Main St. and shot and killed the affable jeweler and coin dealer. Unidentified amounts of cash and merchandise were taken.

Despite his wound, John, 78, was still responsive when found by a family member who called 9-1-1 for help. He was on the shop's floor behind one of the display cases. A local registered nurse, who recognized a medical problem had apparently occurred at the shop, stopped her vehicle and assisted at the scene until Scott County EMS technicians arrived. Neither his family nor local police and EMS technicians realized that he had been shot; they thought it was a medical issue.

Turner died at Scott Memorial Hospital.

Not until a doctor and Scott County Deputy Coroner Chris Fugate looked more closely at the body was the head wound examined and determined to be the result of foul play.

The case was then quickly pronounced a death investigation, with the Austin Police Department requesting assistance from the ISP. As ISP crime scene technicians processed the crime scene, ISP detectives immediately began developing and following leads on the perpetrator.

John Turner had operated his shop for years in the same little store. He was honest in his dealings and thoughtful, providing small gifts for his favorite customers at Christmas. There was no fancy showroom for the store's merchandise. Everyone was treated fairly, whether buying or selling, though Turner was not above setting some special item aside for a customer he knew would be interested.

Staff of the Buchanan Funeral Home in Austin is in charge of arrangements.

ISP detectives continue on the case, requesting that anyone with any knowledge of any detail on that quiet Saturday afternoon in downtown Austin to call toll-free at 1-800-872-6743 or at 1-812-246-5424. Callers can remain anonymous.

A possible breakthrough in the case was reported Monday night, November 9, from unofficial sources. Supposedly, ISP detectives were talking to a man of interest regarding the crime.

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