Saturday, April 1st
First Chickasha Public Schools Hall of Honor Members Inducted;
District Teacher of the Year and Athletic Hall of Fame Inductees Named
The Hall of Honor at Chickasha Public Schools has inducted its first members. Two graduates and a retired teacher were recognized for their accomplishments during last night’s Chickasha Public School Foundation annual gala and fundraiser. Ada Sipuel-Fisher was honored for her pioneering civil rights work. The 1941 graduate of Chickasha’s Lincoln High School was the first African-American to attend the OU Law School, opening the door for future minorities to pursue their dreams of attending law school there. She graduated from the OU law school and also would eventually serve on the board of
regents for OU. Art Griffith was a 1915 graduate of Chickasha High School. He fought in World War 1 and would graduate from Oklahoma A and M. He would become the wresting coach at the university where his teams won eight national championships. He also coached the USA wrestling team which won a gold medal in the 1948 Olympics. Long-time speech and drama teacher Darrell Harms was also inducted. He spent 35 years as a speech and drama teacher and was the public address announcer at many high school and junior high football, basketball, and baseball games.
High school art Ttacher named district teacher of the year
Also during the gala, high school art teacher Allison Cofer was named the District Teacher of the Year. Cofer has been with the district for eight years with the last four being at the high school. Officials also inducted two new members in the district's athletic hall of fame.
Two new members inducted into the CHS Athletic Hall of Fame
Kirk Goss was two-time state golf champion and was part of the 1972 team which won a state title. He went on to be a four-year letterman for the Oklahoma State University golf team and played on PGA mini-tours in Arizona and Florida. Also inducted into the athletic hall of fame was businessman and philanthropist Steve Laforge. He has been a generous contributor to all the district's athletic programs and extra-curricular programs including the academic team, band, and robotics.
Regional Fires Erupt in Friday's High Winds
Regional fire departments were dispatched to several fires that erupted during yesterday's high winds. Grady County volunteer fire crews were summoned to a fire in the Bailey area near the Grady and Garvin County line, one east of Rush Springs, and assisted the Blanchard Fire Department on a grass fire. There were no immediate reports of structure damage with these fires. The Grady County Fire Department Facebook page indicated that Ninnekah, Friend, Naples, Alex, Bradley, Bailey, and Acme departments spent time beating back flames. The post also thanked the Rush Springs Fire Department for helping with the Bailey fire.
OKC Energy Firm Reports Well Completions
Completion reports on some oil and gas wells south of Alex indicated they were combining to bring in some decent numbers. Gulfport MidCon of Oklahoma City said three Scr wells were producing 1,200 barrels of oil and 28,000 Mcf of natural gas per day. The wells are in section 30 of Township 4 North and Range 5 West. The wells ae in the Woodford formation and were drilled to a true vertical depth of more than 14,000 feet. The wells were spudded between December of 2021 and March of 2022.
Talk Show Topics
Here's what we're talking about this weekend. Renee Sansom with the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services is this week’s guest on the KOOL Konversation. On Real Estate Today, this week's guests are Chet Hitt of Towns End Still House and Grill, his marketing director Jennifer Hernandez, and Jim Cowan with the Chickasha Economic Development Council Both programs air tomorrow morning, after the 8 o'clock news. Find podcasts of both programs under the Community tab on this website.
A wake service for Lavonne Tofpi, 75, of Chickasha will be at 6:00 p.m. Sunday, April 2nd at McRay Funeral Home. A funeral service will be held at 10:00 a.m. Monday, April 3rd at the First and Georgia Church of Christ. She worked at the Lawton Indian Hospital, was an officer with Head Start, and met Oprah Winfrey. Arrangements are with McRay Funeral Home.
A memorial service for Sherri Amerson, 58, of Chickasha will be held at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, April 4th at Parkview Christian Church. She was a health care aide. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral Home.
Funeral service for Judy Duprez of Chickasha will be held at 1:00 p.m. Tuesday, April 4th at the First Christian Church. She was a long-time English teacher at Chickasha High School. Arrangements are with Sevier Funeral Home.
Friday, March 31, 2023
First Members of Chix Schools Hall of Honor to be Inducted
A special celebration will be held tonight during the annual Chickasha Public Schools Foundation gala. Three people will be the first to be inducted into the Chickasha school district's Hall of Honor. The hall was established this year to celebrate individuals who have contributed to the welfare of humanity, brought unusually positive attention to Chickasha schools, and modeled high personal and professional qualities for students. They are Dr. Ada Lois Sipuel-Fisher - an early civil rights pioneer who broke the color barrier at the OU Law School. She attended Lincoln High School in the 1940s, graduated from the OU law school and practiced law in Chickasha and Oklahoma City. She also taught at Langston University and would serve on the board of regents for OU. Also being inducted is Art Griffith, who attended Chickasha schools more than 100 years ago. He served in World War I and would graduate from Oklahoma A and M, then eventually lead the A and M wresting team to eight national titles. In addition, he coached the USA wrestling team to a gold medal in the 1948 Olympics and is in the National Wrestling Hall of Fame. Also to be inducted is longtime speech and drama teacher Darrell Harms. The one-time rodeo clown taught for 35 years at Chickasha High School. Tonight's foundation gala will be held at the Grady County Fairgrounds.
Holy City of the Wichitas Ready for Annual Passion Play
Easter is just over a week away and once again this year The Holy City of the Wichitas will host its annual Easter pageant. This is the 98th year for the Passion Play which follows the life, crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus. Alan Corrales is the pageant director and says they were able to get a new sound system this year.
More than 150 volunteers take part in the Passion Play including Corrales. He’s been part of the pageant since he was eight years old and this is his 56th year. There are two performances – one tomorrow night (April 1st) and one next Saturday night (April 8th) starting about 8:30 both evenings. It is free and open to the public. Corrales encourages those attending to dress for the weather. The Holy City is just north of Lawton next to the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge.
Ag Producers Encouraged to Apply for USDA Grants
Agriculture producers, producer groups, and ag businesses might consider applying for USDA funds from the agency's Value-Added Producer Grant program. USDA Rural Development has about $31 million available for programs nationwide. Grants must be used to develop new products or expand existing markets for value-added products. Applicants must produce at least 50-percent of the raw agriculture product to which value is being added. Two separate grants are available. First, planning grants of up to $75,000 are available for feasibility studies and business planning. Second, working capital grants fund up to $250,000 to cover marketing and producer development costs. Priority will be given to beginning, veteran, and socially-disadvantaged producers. Applicants need to register for a government identification number. It could take up to five weeks to activate the number so producers are encouraged to register early. On-line applications are due May 11th through the website: www.grants.gov
Completed paper applications must be submitted to the USDA Rural Development State Office in Stillwater by May 16th.
Cyril Teacher Honored for 50 Years of Service
There was a surprise party at Cyril Public Schools yesterday. Long-time teacher Becky Thompson was honored by students and staff. Thompson is in her 50th year of teaching and all have been at Cyril. She started as a kindergarten teacher and speech therapist and is currently teaching third grade students. Among the students she has taught are 10 current Cyril school employees.
Early Voting Ends Today Ahead of Next Week's Elections
Today is the last day for in-person, absentee voting ahead of next Tuesday's municipal and school board elections. Early voting can be done at county election boards until 6 p.m. today (Friday, March 31st). Regular precincts will be open Tuesday, April 4th from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $74.37 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $79.27.
Natural gas is $2.10 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,994 and silver is $23.97.
No service is scheduled for Michael McAdoo, 66, of Lawton. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral Home.
Bobby Glen Rogers
A memorial service for Bobby Rogers, 62, of Pocasset is pending with Brown-Thomas Funeral Home.
Thursday, March 30th
Two Arrested Following Drug Sale to Informant
A man and woman who have long police records are back in custody for allegedly selling drugs and having illegal weapons and stolen property. 41-year old William 'BJ' DeHart, III and 41-year old Stephanie 'Nana' Eldridge were arrested by Grady County DEA agent Jim Peek and other law enforcement officers this week. A probable cause affidavit indicates that a confidential informant was give cash to purchase meth from the pair. A transaction was made at the Double B RV Park in the 700 block of North 13th Street in Chickasha Tuesday afternoon. After the drug buy, agents obtained a search warrant where they found numerous drugs, a sawed-off shotgun and other weapons, and ammunition. The investigation also revealed the travel trailer the suspects were living in had been stolen from a deer lease in Garvin County last October. Both DeHart and Eldridge have been charged with multiple new felonies in connection with this week’s arrests and are in the Grady County Jail in lieu of $100,000 bond each.
Onward Chickasha Survey Ends Friday
Chickasha residents have two more days to submit comments for the Onward Chickasha survey. The survey is gathering information to put together a long-range plan for improvements within the City of Chickasha. The survey has numerous questions about police and fire, parks and recreation, infrastructure, and other areas. The survey takes about 10 minutes to complete. The survey can be found on the website: www.onwardchickasha.org
The website has an inter-active map and a section that explains the reasons for creating a plan to make improvements in the city over the next 20 to 30 years.
Natural Gas Prices Drop
The price of natural gas has plummeted in the first quarter of 2023. Matt Skinner with the Oklahoma Corporation commission explains-
Here are the prices for crude oil and precious metals-
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $72.97 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $78.28.
Gold is $1,984 and silver is $23.84.
4Her Shares STEM Info
A Grady County 4Her enjoys sharing information he's learned in his research of STEM projects - Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Shane Williamson with the Rock Island 4H club shares some information you may not know-
Williamson says there are 700,000 miles of power lines in the U.S. with nearly 8 million workers employed in nearly 123,000 power plants nationwide.
USAO Presents Weekend Musical
USAO performing arts students open a weekend performance tonight. The musical A Man of No Importance is a collaboration of Terrence McNalley, Lynn Ahrens, and Stephen Flaherty – all of whom won Tony Awards for Ragtime. It's based on a 1994 Albert Finney movie of the same name and tells the story of an amateur theatre group and their leader. Performances times are 7:30 tonight, tomorrow night and Saturday night and a 2:00 p.m. Sunday matinee. It's open to the public and tickets are $20 while USAO students get free admission with ID.
Wednesday, March 29th
Search for Next USAO President Begins
Regents for the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma (USAO) have officially begun the search to find the university's next president. Current president John Feaver previously announced plans to retire at the end of this calendar year. He has served as president for more than 20 years and has been associated with USAO for more than 40 years. An independent search firm has developed a profile which is being used to recruit highly-qualified candidates. Diana Ming is the regent who is chairing the presidential search committee. She said it is an exciting time in the more than 100-year history of the university and she's confident they will have a robust and diverse pool of candidates. Regents are working with the firm called Higher Education Leadership Search to help find candidates. The group held open forums with USAO faculty, staff, students, alumni, the USAO Foundation, and members of the community to develop the profile. Applications for the post will be accepted through April 28th.
Senior Citizen Arrested for Allegedly Stabbing Brother
A 75-year old man is arrested for allegedly stabbing his brother. Gary Stringfield was arrested by Chickasha police after they were called to the Whispering Pines Apartments on Frisco Avenue last Wednesday. Authorities received a 9-1-1 call from a man who said the victim came to his door bleeding. The victim had been stabbed in his neck and chest and he was taken to the hospital. A probable cause affidavit indicates police found Stringfield in another apartment and saw blood on his hands. Authorities asked him if he had been in an altercation with his brother to which Stringfield replied 'hell yeah we fought - we're brothers’. Stringfield told police he didn't know how his brother got hurt. Authorities found a folding metal knife with blood on it in the apartment. Stringfield has been charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and remains in jail in lieu of a $75,000 bond.
Oklahoma Rural Jobs Act Funds Now Available
Rural Oklahoma businesses looking to expand can now apply for loans to help them with their growth. Officials with the Oklahoma Department of Commerce say that five certified participants have been authorized to infuse $100 million of capital to businesses in rural communities. The program was created through the Oklahoma Rural Jobs Act signed into law last year. Companies can use the funds to invest in equipment, purchase supplies, and hire employees when they have to opportunity to expand. Commerce department officials say the program is expected to create jobs in rural areas and help improve the state's economy.
PSO Receives Energy Star Partner Award
Public Service Company of Oklahoma (PSO) receives recognition from a couple of federal agencies. PSO was selected as an Energy Star Partner of the Year from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy for what the agencies call 'sustained excellence.' In a press release, PSO officials say the award reflects the value and success of PSOs energy efficient programs for its customers - helping them save energy and money while improving the comfort of their homes. It's the seventh straight year that PSO and its parent company American Electric Power have received the award.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $73.20 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $78.60.
Natural gas is $2.03 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,985 and silver is $23.43.
Funeral service for Cledia Rakestraw, 94, of the Tuttle and Mustang area will be held at 10:00 a.m. Thursday, March 30th at the First Baptist Church of Mustang. She graduated with a class of nine students from Middleberg High School where she played basketball and softball. Arrangements are with Sevier Funeral Home of Tuttle.
Tuesday, March 28th
'Old Town Chickasha' Development Plans Revealed
California developer Chet Hitt formally announced his plans to invest millions of dollars in downtown Chickasha yesterday. Called Old Town Chickasha, Hitt unveiled his proposal in a 90-minute program at the Rock Island Railroad Depot with numerous city, county, and state leaders on hand. A lot of Hitt's plans had already been made public including a distillery, a restaurant, and a coffee shop. Yesterday's plans went another step further as Hitt encouraged the building of a new hotel near the Grady County Fairgrounds, a pedestrian bridge over the railroad tracks linking the fairgrounds to the downtown area, and the development of Phase Two of the downtown park. Oklahoma Lt. Gov. Matt Pinnell was among those attending and said it's exciting to hear about the private investment Hitt is bringing to the city and that the state has a number of programs that can help.
Leaders from city and county governments, the chamber of commerce and economic development council, the Grady County Fairgrounds, USAO, and Canadian Valley Technology Center were on hand for the presentation as Hitt encouraged the cooperation of all of the groups to continue efforts to make Chickasha one of the state's top tourist destinations.
Anadarko Man Honored by Dep't of Rehab Services
An Anadarko man who serves as the tribal historian at the Kiowa Tribal Museum in Carnegie is the recipient of a state honor. Dr. Phil Dupoint was named the client of the year for the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services. Dupoint has dual amputations and applied for the agency's services in 2021. The agency helped provide modifications to Dupoint's home to give him better access to his work room, office, and living areas. He says one of his proudest moments was obtaining his driver's license. Kiowa Tribal Chairman Lawrence Spottedbird and Vice Chairman Jacob Tsotigh were among those attending the presentation held during the People with Disabilities Day at the state capital.
USAO 'Giving Day' Aims to Raise $150,000
USAO has an ambitious fund-raising goal to celebrate President John Feaver’s more than 40-year affiliation with the university. This Friday the university will host Giving Day - a one-day campaign to raise $150,000 to celebrate Feaver's work. Feaver will be retiring at the end of this calendar year. JP Audus is the university's vice president for advancement and also is director of the USAO Foundation. He said devoting one day to all of what Feaver has done for the university is far from adequate, considering the impact he has had on so many people. The event will feature donor challenges and matching gifts to maximize the value of each contribution. Donations may be given to student scholarships, academic departments, athletics, and other programs.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $72.81 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $78.12.
Natural gas is $2.09 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,971 and silver is $23.05.
A graveside service for Thomas Julian, 81, of Chickasha will be held at 3:00 p.m. Friday, March 31st at Fairlawn Cemetery. He set two state track records and was an all-state basketball player for St. Joseph’s Academy in Chickasha and was a U.S. Army veteran. Arrangements are with Sevier Funeral Home.
Sammie Joe Williams
A memorial service for Sammie Joe Williams, 84, of Alex will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, April 1st at the Alex High School gymnasium. He was a farmer and rancher and worked for the soil conservation service. Arrangements are with McRay Funeral Home.
A memorial luncheon for Eldred Jones, 82, of Rush Springs will be held at 1:00 p.m. Saturday, April 1st at the Southern Baptist Church in Rush Springs. He was a truck driver and worked for a mobile home company. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral Home.
Monday, March 27th
Boyd, Anderson to Face Off in Chix City County Election
Chickasha residents will go to the polls next week to vote in just one race in this year's city council election. It’s in Ward 4 where current councilman Kelly Boyd will face Eric Anderson for a two-year term. Boyd has been on the council for two years. He discusses the council’s recent adoptions of some new regulations to give code enforcement more authority to make property owners clean up areas around town-
Anderson is retired from the U.S. Army who has seen the city grow over the years and would like to be involved-
The election is next Tuesday, April 4th and all registered voters who live in the city limits can cast a ballot. In addition to the Chickasha City Council election there are other town council and some school board elections in the region. In-person, absentee voting will be available at county election boards this Friday and Saturday from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and regular precincts will be open Tuesday, April 4th from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
OHP Continues Probe of Fatal Caddo County Crash
The highway patrol continues investigating a deadly traffic accident that happened in Caddo County over the weekend. 48-year old Avery Swarts of Elgin died when his pickup ran off the road, hit a fence and rolled several times. The accident happened just before 4:00 p.m. Saturday afternoon west of Eakly near the junction of State Highways 59 and 152.
Anadarko-area Crash Victim Air-Lifted to Hospital
In a separate accident in Caddo County a driver was air-lifted to an Oklahoma City hospital after his car crashed near Anadarko. 36-year old William Shepherd of Mt. View was last in fair condition after the accident near CR1370 and Turnpike Road southeast of Anadarko about 5:00 p.m. Sunday. The highway patrol reports that Shepherd lost control of his car while driving across a bridge. He ran off the road and overturned and was pinned inside the car for about 10 minutes. He was taken to the hospital with head, neck, and trunk injuries.
Hinton Coach Charged with Child Abuse Appears in Court
The high school wrestling coach at Hinton was briefly in police custody last week after a felony warrant was issued for his arrest. Jacob Peck was arrested last Friday. Authorities issued a warrant for Peck's arrest March 10th for child abuse. An affidavit filed by Hinton police alleged that at least two girls complained that Peck was overly physical with them, with one of them alleging Peck placed her in a choke hold. Peck is out of jail after posting a $5,000 bond. A preliminary hearing conference has been scheduled May 26th in Caddo County District Court.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $69.26 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $74.99.
Natural gas is $2.21 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,973 and silver is $23.06.
Angeline ‘Angie’ Friskel
No funeral service is scheduled for ‘Angie’ Friskel, 75, of Chickasha. She was a scrub tech and owned an antique store. Arrangements are with Sevier Funeral Home.
Funeral service for Catherine Robinson, 83, of Chickasha will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, April 1st at the Grady County Fairgrounds. She was a gospel singer and worked at Head Start. Arrangements are with Brown-Thomas Funeral Home.