In “Getting to know your Chickasha Fire Department” we meet Captain John Carpenter.
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Saturday, June 16th
Deputies Honored for Saving Life of Shooting Victim
A couple of Grady County deputies are recognized for saving the life of shooting victim. Sgt. Terry Alexander and Corporal Chris Kennell were awarded citations from the Oklahoma State Legislature for their heroics. The deputies responded to a shooting in January of 2017 where Donnie Shelton suffered a critical injury. Alexander and Kennell performed life-saving measures on Shelton until paramedics arrived. Later, doctors said had it not been for the two deputies, Shelton probably would have died. Shelton's wife Clarissa contacted State Representative David Perryman in order to thank the two deputies. Perryman recently presented both Alexander and Kennell with their citations.
Police Officers Recognized for Bravery
Two Chickasha police officers have been awarded for their work with the department. Sgt. Matt Schoolfield and officer Fidencio Ramirez were presented the Kiwanis International Voice of Chickasha award. Chickasha Kiwanis Club president Jason Pruner thanked the two officers for risking their lives, and that their bravery, dedication, hard work, and commitment to the community are great assets.
Officers Step Up Efforts to Stop Drinking and Driving
Law enforcement officials will make a concerted effort to get drinking drivers off Grady County roads. An END DUI campaign will be held starting at 7:00 p.m. tonight and run through 3:00 a.m. Sunday. The Chickasha Police Departrment, Grady County Sheriff's Office, the Chickasaw Lighthorse Patrol and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol will all participate. The highway patrol reports that 21 people were killed in Grady County traffic accidents in 2012 and that eight of them were involved in alcohol-related crashes. Law enforcement officials say whenever individuals decide to drink, they should have a designated driver, or use a cab, Uber, or Lyft service.
Numerous Chickasha Events this Weekend
There are numerous activities going on in Chickasha this Father's Day weekend. The 25th annual Juneteenth Celebration will be held at Washita Valley Park. There's a parade from Lincoln School to the park at 10 o’clock this morning, with formal opening ceremonies at 11:00 a.m. The free family event runs from about noon to 6 p.m. The Chickasha Antique Auto Club this morning will have its monthly coffee and cars. That’s also a free event at the Rock Island Depot downtown from 9:00 a.m. to noon, and there’s free coffee and donuts while they last. The Chickasha Area Arts Council hosts Day of the Dads, with a lot of events for dad, mom, and kiddos. That's a fundraiser for the Rock Island Arts Festival. Those 17 and older get in free. Wristbands are $10 each, or $7 per child for three or more youth. TwisterFest continues at the Muscle Car Ranch all day. More than 80 bands playing on five stages. Firefall is the featured band tonight. Day passes are $20. Another concert tonight at the Legends Event Park will feature 80s southern rock band Jackyl, with tickets available at the door. And there's cage fighting tonight at the Grady County Fairgrounds. About a dozen MMA bouts are scheduled, including local combatants Taylor Wilson, Brandon Wright, and Jarod Spoon of Chickasha, Manuel De La Torre of Verden, and Big D Burchfield of Minco. Tickets will be available at the door. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. with the action starting at 7:30 p.m.
Planets, Moon to Align
There will be an interesting view in the night sky this evening. Mercury, Venus, and the moon will appear to be in a straight line. Look to the west about 45 minutes after sunset. You’ll see the moon to the southwest, about 30 degrees above the horizon. Directly to the west and a little above the horizon will be the bright light of Venus. Just to the right and below will be Mercury.
Sheriff's Office Issues Warrant List
Each week, the Grady County Sheriff’s Office issues a list of individuals who have outstanding warrants. Here’s public information officer Lisa Hatchett.
If you have information on any of these individuals, you’re asked to contact the sheriff’s office by calling 405-222-5085.
Friday, June 15th
Arrest Made in Child Abuse Investigation
Chickasha police are looking into a reported case of child abuse. Details are scarce but we do know that a 33-year old man was arrested on a child abuse complaint. There's no word on how seriously the child may have been hurt. Due to the serious nature of the allegations we won't publicize the name of the suspect unless prosecutors file formal charges against him. The man remains in the Grady County Jail at this time. Police records show that officers were called to the 1300 block of South 2nd about 2:30 p.m. Wednesday. On Thursday, a Grady County judge issued an emergency protective order against the suspect. We'll bring you more details on the investigation as they become available.
School Board Apologies Over Language in Agenda Issue
Now an update to story we had earlier this week, regarding a potential legal issue between the Chickasha Board of Education and a local resident. On its agenda for this week's meeting, the school board was to go behind closed doors to discuss possible legal action against Brannan Bordwine, and to possibly ban him from school property. It seems the school board is apologizing. KOOL News received a copy of a letter sent to Bordwine, said to have been written by school board president Doug Brown. Brown wrote than the school board apologizes for any embarrassment or inconvenience caused by the agenda item. The letter indicates the matter concerned a lease between Bordwine and the school district. Bordwine said it allows him access to about 27 acres of land for ag production. Bordwine currently has cattle on that land. Bordwine said he had a five-year lease which runs through 2010. The letter indicates that the lease is not signed by any school board member, and that Bordwine acknowledged that no school board member had any knowledge of the lease. Bordwine furnished a copy of the lease, but it wasn't clear who may have approved it. The letter said questions have arisen about the involvement of the school district's ag teachers, but stated the teachers were not involved. The letter indicates the school board took no action on the issue, and that the panel will take more time to work through the situation.
EDC Director Christy Elkins Resigns
City leaders are looking for a new economic development director. Christy Elkins has stepped down from the post. The EDC board of directors accepted Elkins’ resignation in its regular monthly meeting yesterday. Board chairman Jay Epperson.
Epperson said Elkins is stepping down due to a re-organization among the groups that make up the economic development council, which includes representatives from the City of Chickasha, the chamber of commerce and the Chickasha Industrial Authority. Epperson said the EDC may hire a head hunting firm to find a new director but did not have a time table on when a new director would be in place. Elkins' resignation is effective at the end of the month. We were unable to contact Elkins to get a comment from her.
WWII Vets Takes Honor Flight
A Grady County World War II veteran is in Washington, D.C. as part of the non-profit Honor Flight organization. 91-year old Walter Shaw of Alex is among 40 veterans who are making the trip. Shaw is accompanied by his daughter, Teresa Harrison, also of Alex. They flew out of Dallas-Fort Worth airport this morning. They'll get to tour memorials for World War II, Korean, and Vietnam wars as well as the navy and marine memorials. They'll also visit the Lincoln Memorial and visit Arlington National Cemetery and view the changing of the guard. Shaw joined the Merchant Marines when he was 16 and later joined the Army. He spent two years in the Army from 1944 to 1946 and was stationed most of the time in Germany. The two will return home tomorrow night.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $66.89 a barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $75.94.
Natural gas is $2.96 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,302 and silver is $17.23.
Thursday, June 14th
Consumer Spending Numbers Out
Consumer spending throughout Grady County has fallen for the third straight month. It's estimated that $91.6 million in taxable goods and services were purchased in March of this year. The trend is down about 13 percent from what was a near record month for consumer spending back in December. While the month-to-month numbers are down, the figure is up substantially from March of last year, by more than 44 percent. Grady County collected $685,000 in sales tax revenue from that retail business. There is a 3/4 of a penny county-wide sales tax. Here's the breakdown of how that money is spent, all approved by Grady County voters. $229,000 is for the county fairgrounds; $202,000 is for Grady Memorial Hospital; $114,000 is divided among 20 fire districts, with each one receiving about $5,700; another $114,000 is shared by seven senior nutrition centers, with each one collecting $16,000. Tuttle Emergency Medical Services gets $21,000 and Rush Springs EMS receives $5,000. For the City of Chickasha, consumer spending was estimated at $26.6 million for March, which is up about 12 percent compared to March of 217. This month, the city collected just over $1 million in sales tax revenue.
Mick Cornett Campaign for Governor Stops in Chickasha
Less than two weeks remain before the June 26th primary election. Republican gubernatorial candidate Mick Cornett was in Chickasha for a fundraiser last night. We had an exclusive one-on-one interview with the former Oklahoma City mayor. He said his track record of leadership in Oklahoma City of creating jobs and new businesses gives him an advantage in the crowded field of 10 Republicans on the ballot. He says he hopes to bring together the various factions at the state capital.
Cornett was endorsed by the Tulsa World this past weekend. Some surveys indicate he's among the top three GOP candidates with Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb and businessman Kevin Stitt.
Man Charged with Assault of His Mother
A Chickasha man is arrested and charged with the assault of his own mother. 19-year old Trevor James Harrell is accused of attacking the woman at her home just outside the Chickasha city limits. Documents files in Grady County District Court indicate she told a Grady County sheriff's deputy that Harrell jumped on her back and knocked her to the ground while trying to take her cel phone. She was not seriously injured. Harrell told investigators he was trying to get a copy of his social security card. Harrell's book-in photo at the Grady County Jail shows him with a black eye and bruises all over his face. Harrell told the deputy he was hurt in a fight a couple of days earlier. Harrell was charged with a misdemeanor count of assault and battery. He remains in jail in lieu of $7,500 bond. He is on probation for pleading guilty to a 2017 misdemeanor DUI charge.
Veterans Served Free Breakfast on Flag Day
Today is Flag Day, and to commemorate Old Glory, military veterans can enjoy a free breakfast. The education committee of Grady County's Oklahoma Home and Community education program will serve vets at the Grady County DAV center this morning. Pancakes, sausage, and beverages will be served from 8:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. the DAV Center in Chickasha at 6th and Chickasha Avenue.
Farm Service Agency County Committee Elections Set
The county committee election process for USDA Farm Service Agencies nationwide begin this week. For most regions, the office that represents administrative area No. 1 is up for election. In Grady County, that region is the Pocasset, Minco, and Tuttle area. Mark Jackson with the Grady County FSA office.
The filing period for the election opens tomorrow and runs through August 1st. The election will be held later this year, with winners to serve a three-year term starting in January.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $66.64 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $76.74.
Natural gas is $2.96 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,308 and silver is $17.17.
Wednesday, June 13th
Missing Man's Body Found in Submerged Pick-up
Family and friends of Charles French are mourning his death. The 75-year old Ninnekah man was reported missing from Norman a couple of weeks ago. A Silver Alert was issued by Norman authorities. French's body was found in a pick-up submerged at Lake Thunderbird over the weekend. Norman police said that French had lived in the Ninnekah area for more than 30 years, and was in the process of moving to Newalla. Authorities say he had borrowed a pick-up from a friend in Norman, and he was last seen on May 2nd. Authorities say relatives would go for weeks without talking to French, so it wasn't unusual that he hadn't been heard from for an extended period of time. The state medical examiner will determine how French died.
One Dead in Anadarko Shooting; Suspect Being Sought
An Anadarko man has died as a result of a shooting early Tuesday. 32-year old Duane Hugar, Jr. died after he was taken to an Oklahoma City hospital yesterday. Anadarko police were called to a home in the 1500 block of American Street on the city’s east edge about 2:30 a.m. Tuesday. Hugar was initially taken to the Anadarko hospital, then air-lifted to Oklahoma City where he died about 12:30 p.m. At last report, authorities were still looking for a suspect. In a prepared statement, police said the shooting was believed to be an isolated incident and that the community was not in danger. If you have information that can help authorities with this case you're asked to call Anadarko police.
Body of Missing Bridge Creek Man Found
A man reported missing from the Bridge Creek area last week has apparently taken his own life. 33-year old Chris Bell was reported missing by family members last Friday morning. The Grady County Sheriff's Office reports that Bell's body was found the next day, in a wooded area about a mile from his home.
Tire Blowout Blamed on Turnpike Crash
A crash on the H.E. Bailey Turnpike Monday afternoon sent two people to the hospital. A tire blowout on a pick up was said to have caused the crash which occurred near mile marker 60 outside Fletcher. 26-year old Jessica Graves and 42-year old Andral Clark, both of Lawton, were taken by a medical helicopter to a Lawton hospital. Graves was last in fair condition with internal injuries. She was ejected from the pick up which rolled 1 ½ times. Clark was treated and released.
Grand Elementary Principal Heading to Norman
We reported yesterday that Grand Avenue Elementary School Principal Cindy Stone was stepping down at the end of the month. We talked to Stone, and she says she has accepted a similar position at Monroe Elementary School in Norman. Stone spent five years with Chickasha schools, and all of them at Grand Avenue, where she first served as assistant principal and then principal. She says she'll miss her co-workers and students, and looks forward to her new career in Norman.
Grady County Participates in Farm to Food Bank Effort
A local USDA office is teaming up with the Regional Food Bank to offer healthy farm-fresh foods to hungry families. The Grady County Conservation District is growing things like spinach, lettuce, kale, and collard greens. The crops are given to the food bank as part of the Farm to Food Bank Project. This is the first year for the Grady County office to participate. About two acres of the vegetables were planted on the Oscar Nelson farm north of Chickasha. The conservation district office is looking for volunteers to help glean the crops tomorrow. Officials say not only are the crops important for a healthy diet, the crops also play an important role in soil health and water quality. If you have some time to help, they'll be gathering the crops starting about 8:00 a.m. tomorrow. Contact the Grady County Conservation District for more information.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $66.36 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $75.88.
Natural gas is $2.94 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,298 and silver is $16.90.
Tuesday, June 12th
Interviews Underway with
Chix School Superintendent Candidates
A new superintendent is being sought for Chickasha Public Schools. The contract for the current interim superintendent, Jack Herron, expires at the end of this month. Herron was hired following the resignation of previous superintendent, Dave Cash. The board of education held a special meeting last night to interview three candidates. A fourth candidate is expected to be interviewed tonight during the regular monthly meeting of the board. All the candidates are being interviewed behind closed doors, and the candidates have not been identified.
Admininstrative Changes for CPS Expected
In addition to a new superintendent, some administrative changes are being made throughout the district for the school year that begins in August. At the high school, the school board is expected to name Rhonda Snow as principal. She and Jerry Don Bray had been serving as co-principals for the last several months. Bray is expected to be named the district's athletic director, following the resignation of long-time athletic director Yohance Brown. There will also be a new principal at Grand Elementary. Cindy Stone will step down from that post at the end of the month. A new principal won't be named until later this summer. Dan Turner will remain as principal at the Middle School, R.P. Ashanti-Alexander remains as principal at Lincoln School; and Tressia Meeks remains as principal at Bill Wallace. The school board is expected to retain Cindy Schmidt as assistant superintendent, and Pam Huggins as the district's special education director. Huggins is the only employee remaining among those were suspended amid the controversy surrounding the district's personalized learning curriculum last December.
School Board to Discuss Possible Lawsuit vs. Contractor
Also, the school board is expected to deal with a legal issue regarding local contractor, Brannan Bordwine. A discussion will be held behind closed doors on the matter, and the group will vote in open session whether to file a lawsuit against him and seek compensation for past use and damage to school property. The panel may also ban him or any related or unrelated business entities or interests from school property. The reason behind the proposed legal action is not included on the agenda for tonight's meeting. The meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. at the school administration building.
New Construction Permits Down in May
New construction in Chickasha slowed considerably in May, compared to the first four months of 2018. 13 permits totaling $380,000 were approved by the city's Community Development Department last month. New construction topped $1 million in each of the previous four months. The largest commercial project approved last month was for the remodeling of the First National Bank branch at 6th and Grand Avenue. Willowbrook Development received a permit for about $231,000. The lobby of the bank is closed through next Monday, while that work is underway. Another commercial project was also awarded to Willowbrook Development, to renovate the facade of a building at 117 Chickasha Avenue. Nine permits for residential construction or remodeling totaled about $60,000 were also approved. Total new construction in Chickasha since the first of the year is just over $16 million.
DA to Speak Against Medical Marijuana State Question
District Attorney Jason Hicks will hold a town meeting tonight on SQ 788, the proposal to legalize medical marijuana. Hicks is opposed to the passage of the state question. The program is hosted by the Grady County Republican Party, and will get underway at 6:30 tonight on the Chickasha Campus of the Canadian Valley Technology Center. No one is scheduled to speak in favor of the question, which is on the ballot for the June 26th primary election.
Tips for Preserving Summer Harvest
Home food preservation will be starting up in a few weeks. Freezing is among the easiest, most convenience, and least time-consuming ways to preserve the summer harvest. When it comes to freezing fruits, Susan Routh with Grady County OSU Extension suggests.
She says be sure to wash and sort fruit before freezing, and to throw away fruit that is not yet ripe or is of poor quality.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $66.10 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $76.46.
Natural gas is $2.95 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,301 and silver is $16.88.
Monday, June 11th
One Dies, One Critically Hurt in Sunday Night Accident
A crash in northern Grady County last night claims the life of one man, and another is in critical condition. Jacob Gordon, 25, of Oklahoma City died in the accident that happened about 9:00 p.m. last night southwest of Tuttle, near the intersection of CR 1210 and CS 2920. A passenger in Gordon's car, Shaine Coffman, 24, of Tuttle, was air-lifted to an Oklahoma City hospital. He was last in critical condition with head, trunk, and internal injuries. The highway patrol reports that Gordon was driving a car that was eastbound, when he lost control and went left of center, colliding with a pick-up driven by an unidentified 16-year old male from Tuttle. The teen was taken by ambulance to an Oklahoma City hospital, where he was treated and released. Traffic in the area was diverted for nearly two hours. The trooper investigating the crash said that neither Gordon nor Coffman were wearing seat belts, but the teen in the pick-up was buckled up.
Fiery Crash on Turnpike Under Investigation
A fiery crash on the H.E. Bailey turnpike southwest of Chickasha this morning shut down the interstate for about an hour and a half. It was a one-vehicle accident that happened about 12:30 a.m. in the westbound lanes of the turnpike near mile marker 68. We don't have any information regarding that crash. The dispatcher with the Lawton Highway Patrol office said no report was available.
New Security Entrance Opens at Grady County Courthouse
Starting today, anyone going to the Grady County Courthouse will have to use the new northeast entrance that has been under construction for the last several months. It’s part of the new enhanced security entrance at the courthouse. Grady County Sheriff Jim Weir says starting today, the only entry and exit to and from the courthouse will be the new addition crews have been working on. Even courthouse employees will have to use this one entry and exit point. The previous main entrance on the south side of the courthouse off of Choctaw Avenue will only be used for emergency exits. Weir says the new elevator that has been installed is operational. Weir said deputies won't begin security checks until Wednesday. The new deputies hired to provide the added security will be searching handbags, backpacks, totes, and similar items. Weir said three new deputies that were hired as part of the security improvements have been on staff for about six months and have attended training.
Anadarko Tourism Day Set
Officials in Anadarko are hosting a day-long event to promote tourism in that community. The City of Anadarko and the Anadarko Chamber of Commerce will be showing recent improvements. State officials and the media have been invited to the program that will be held Thursday. They'll start with a continental breakfast at City Hall, then take an overall tour of the city. There are stops at the National Hall of Fame of Famous American Indians, the Southern Plains Indian Museum, the Anadarko Heritage Museum, and the Wichita Tribal History Center. The group will visit local art galleries, have a wine tasting, and a bus tour of Randlett Park.
Mick Cornett Fundraiser in Chickasha this Week
The June 26th primary election is just over a couple of weeks away. A few candidates for state office are continuing to make their way to the Chickasha area. Republican gubernatorial candidate Mick Cornett will be in the city for a fundraiser Wednesday evening. The former mayor of Oklahoma City will be at the home of Hank and Alison Ross from 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. that evening.
Primary Election Nears
Sample ballots for the primary election are available at county election board offices. There are some county races to be decided. In Grady County, Republicans in District One have three candidates running for county commissioner. Democratic voters in District Three also have three candidates to choose from. All voters in both Grady and Caddo County will decide among three candidates for District Judge. Republicans and Democrats also have a number of candidates running for state house of representative posts, and there are numerous candidates for both parties running for state offices including governor and lieutenant governor. Voters can cast ballots early, either by mail. or in-person-absentee. Those wishing to vote by mail need to have applications in by next Wednesday, June 20th. Applications are available on the state election board website at www.elections.ok.gov
In-person absentee voting can be done at election board offices from 8:00 a.m to 6:00 p.m. on Thursday or Friday, June 21st and 22nd, or Saturday, June 23rd from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Soil Test Helpful in Garden, Landscape
If the veggies you planted this spring don't seem to be doing well, or the plants in your landscape are having issues, there may not be enough nutrients in the soil. You can find out what nutrients your soil is lacking by sending a sample to Oklahoma State University for testing. That's as easy as contacting your local OSU Extension Office. Shiann Burns with the Grady County office in Chickasha says the test is a valuable tool.
Routine soil tests are $10, and it usually takes a week to 10 days to get results.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $65.74 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $76.46.
Natural gas is $2.89 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,298 and silver is $16.79.