Authorities search for missing Clay County man
Clay County resident David Schroeder is still missing after having been last seen Friday in Terre Haute. Schroeder is diabetic and has other medical conditions. Authorities are still searching for him.
Candidates meet public
County candidates for the upcoming election met with the public in a political forum at the YMCA hosted by the Chamber of Commerce and Farm Bureau Insurance. Candidates discussed their opinions on state roads, bringing jobs to the county, tax structures, the wheel tax and more. Candidates discussed how they could bring new businesses to the area, specifically around I-70 and the water tower.
Times' straw poll results are in
The results of the straw poll at thebraziltimes.com are in. In the poll, respondents were asked to give their opinion on the upcoming November election in regard to state offices. A total of 223 responses were collected from the poll. Not all responders answered every question within the poll. The results were given.
Burying a Time Capsule
The Clay County Girl Scouts buried a time capsule filled with patches, letters and photos representing each troupe, among other things, in order to celebrate the Girl Scouts 100th anniversary and the Clay County Popcorn Festival's 10th anniversary. The capsule was donated by French's Funeral Home. The capsule will be opened in 10 years.
On a Mission
One Brazil woman has found a way to use her special skills to help the people of Haiti, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere. Francie Stevens, 84, has been crocheting for around 60 years -- long enough for her to not remember when she learned. For the past five months, she's been crocheting baby hats using yarn she either bought herself or already owned. Now the 246 hats Stevens crocheted will be taken to Haiti by a group of workers with Restoration Alliance (RA). The non-profit humanitarian relief organization is designed specifically to raise money and meet the needs of Foursquare Orphanage in Jeremie, Haiti. RA also visits the orphanage three or four times a year to build relationships and trust.
Modesitts endow elementary dictionaries
Mauri and Janice Modesitt, longtime Clay County residents, recently endowed dictionaries to Meridian Elementary School's third grade classes. The Modesitt's were present at Meridian Elementary Thursday, Oct. 11, along with Brazil Rotary Club member Sam Glover to dedicate the endowed dictionaries. The Modesitt's decided to endow the dictionaries to the school for this year and every year in the future. The Brazil Rotary Club, in partnership with the Wabash Community Foundation, donate dictionaries to every third grade class in every Clay Community School each year.
Semi-truck spills diesel fuel on I-70
Jackson and Posey Township Volunteer Fire Departments (PTVFD), along with the Indiana State Police, responded to a fuel leak from a disabled tractor-trailer on eastbound Interstate-70 at the 25-mile marker Friday, Oct. 12, at approximately 11:15 a.m. Ronny Bill Hodge, 57, Laurel, Miss., drove the Southland Express trailer. He was cited for log book violations and placed out of service by ISP master Trooper Kent Winstead. The vehicle lost approximately 20 gallons of diesel fuel after experiencing mechanical issues.
Bands prepping for semi-state
With only three weeks remaining in the Indiana State School Music Association (ISSMA) marching season, both the Northview Marching Knights and Clay City Imperial Regiment are making their presence known. In the sixth 2012 IndianaMarching.com poll, the Marching Knights moved up one spot in Class B to fourth-place. Northview tallied 127 votes this week, including one first-place nod. Clay City earned 71 votes, good enough for ninth in the poll. The Marching Knights will compete in the Class B ISSMA Pike High School Semi-State event. The top 10 Class B bands will advance to the state finals. Northview will perform at 2:44 p.m. The Imperial Regiment will compete in the Class D ISSMA Franklin Community High School Semi-State event. The top 10 Class D bands will advance to the state finals. Clay City will take the field at 2:31 p.m.
Council talks budget
The City of Brazil Common Council met for a special meeting on Oct. 17, at 7 p.m., in the Brazil City Hall Council Chambers. The purpose of the special meeting was for the council to review the 2013 budget for the departments of the City of Brazil. Council President Sam Glover led the budget workshop with the help of Karen McQueen, Brazil clerk-treasurer. The council went through the general budget as well as the budgets for all city departments and discussed the budgets with department heads that were present.
Suspicious fire outbreaks at Brazil trailer
Officials are planning to call the Indiana State Fire Marshal's office in reference to a trailer fire, which took place Friday morning. At approximately 9:45 a.m., officials were dispatched to a trailer located at 8239 N. CR 425 W., Brazil. The trailer sat on a lot north of United States 40. Upon arrival, Posey Township volunteer firefighters witnessed two neighbors attempting to put out the fire, which appeared to have started in the back of the trailer, which faces west. The fire was contained at approximately 10:15 a.m., but firefighters continued to battle hot spots.
Knights can't keep up with defending state champs
The Northview Knights found out first hand just how potent Indianapolis Cathedral was on both sides of the ball Friday night. The defending Class 4A state champions rolled on to the second round of sectional action with a 62-0 victory over the Knights at Lawrence North High School. The scoring statistics provide a glaring look at just how explosive the Irish offense is as Cathedral scored four times in the first half on the first play of the drive or a punt return and seven of the Irish touchdowns in the opening two quarters came in the first three plays of a drive. Northview coach George Gettle admitted that the Knights just didn't have enough weapons on defense to control Cathedral's offensive weaponry.
Candidates discuss role of school board
The Clay County Chamber of Commerce hosted a Clay Community Schools board of trustees candidate forum Tuesday, Oct. 23, at 6:30 p.m., at the Brazil YMCA.
Chamber President Justin Campbell moderated the forum and asked questions submitted from local citizens. Present at the forum were District 1 candidates Tina Heffner, Kevin Kumpf and Ted Paris, District 2 candidate Gary Rickert, District 3 candidate Tom Reberger and District 4 candidates Forrest Buell, Fred Froderman and Jason Moon. Absent from the forum was District 2 candidate Jennifer Kaelber and District 3 candidate Tammy Beasley.
Two local men prosecuted on multiple counts
On Wednesday, two men were arraigned in the Clay County Circuit Court. George Raymond Goldsmith Jr., 44, Carbon, was charged on five counts of burglary -- four Class B Felonies and one Class C Felony -- and one count of theft, a Class D Felony. Goldsmith allegedly broke into Carbon Baptist Church, McKinley Hill Church of Christ, Staunton First Christian Church and Benwood Church between July 31-Aug. 3, and stole various items. Goldsmith also allegedly broke into Eastside Elementary and Meridian Elementary, stealing various items. Next, Charles Drummond was charged with seven counts of burglary -- five Class B Felonies and two Class C Felonies -- and one count of theft, a Class D Felony. Drummond allegedly broke into Carbon Baptist Church, First Christian Church, McKinley Hill Church of Christ, Carbon Methodist Church and Benwood Church, stealing various items. He allegedly broke into Eastside Elementary and Meridian Elementary, stealing various items. Drummond is also charged with allegedly attempting to break into a Riddell National Bank ATM.
City Council approves 2013 budget
The City of Brazil Common Council met for a regular meeting Wednesday, Oct. 24, at 7 p.m., in the City Hall Council Chambers. At a special session meeting Wednesday, Oct. 17, the board reviewed the tentative 2013 budget, and at this week's meeting, approved it. Council President Sam Glover led the budget discussion and several ordinances were passed concerning the budget.
Community to be warned of computer scam
One Brazil woman almost fell for a computer scam recently. After receiving a call supposedly from Microsoft, the woman was told they had been receiving messages from her computer, saying she had collected corrupted files during updates. The Brazil woman, who asked to remain anonymous, was told her computer had many viruses and was going to crash. The foreign voice on the other side of the line said they were calling to help with the problem and needed to download software that would give them access inside the computer. During the scam, the scammer, once having access inside the victim's computer, brings up a list of files and tells the victim the files are full of viruses. The phone call can take almost an hour as the scammer convinces the victim their computer is about to crash.
For the 26th consecutive year, Clay County residents will be heading to Indianapolis for the Indiana State School Music Association (ISSMA) Marching Band State Finals. On Saturday, the Northview Marching Knights advanced to the ISSMA State Finals, scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 3, at Lucas Oil Stadium. Northview advanced out of the Indianapolis Pike Class B Semi-State. The Clay City Imperial Regiment also competed in semi-state action. However, Clay City did not advance to the Class D State Finals.
CCS improves most DOE grades
After the release of the Department of Education's (DOE) 2012 annual grade report on student progress, Clay Community Schools has reason to celebrate. Almost every school in Clay County either stayed at their same grade, or improved their letter grade from the 2010-2011 report. In Clay Community Schools, Clay City Elementary, Clay City Jr-Sr High, Jackson Township Elementary, Van Buren Elementary, Northview High School and Forest Park Elementary all received a letter grade of A. Staunton Elementary received a grade of B, and North Clay Middle School, East Side Elementary and Meridian Street Elementary all received C's. Some schools made significant improvements, such as Clay City Jr-Sr High School and Northview High School, which both jumped from a grade of C in 2011 to a grade of A in 2012. Forest Park Elementary went from a grade of D in 2011 to a grade of A in 2012.
Couple to refurbish community house
With the help of the community, two locals plan to refurbish the Dick Johnson Community House, which is connected to the Dick Johnson Volunteer Fire Department (DJVFD). Dave and Sheryl Snow, Brazil, who own property in Dick Johnson Township, have strong ties to the community and want to take on the challenge of restoring the building. "Time has taken a toll on this old building, but Dave and I are anxious to bring back its country charm so that other families may enjoy their recollection of days gone by and may be inspired to make new memories," Sheryl said.
NMK finishes fourth in finals
For the second-straight year, the Northview Marching Knights found themselves in fourth-place. On Saturday, the Marching Knights competed in the Indiana State School Music Association (ISSMA) Class B State Finals, coming away in fourth, the same spot they earned in 2011. "I think anything in the top five is about right," NMK Band Director Bob Medworth said. "(The students) seemed to think (we did well). They seemed happy."
Autopsy results revealed
Preliminary results of an autopsy conducted on the body of a dead female near the Clay-Vigo County line Monday indicated the woman died from blunt force trauma to the head. According to media outlets and law enforcement officials, Vigo County Coroner Dr. Roland Kohr conducted the autopsy at approximately 10 a.m., Monday. According to reports, Dr. Kohr said the body was in a severe decomposed state, meaning it could have been there for weeks. On Sunday, Vigo County Sheriff's Department Chief Deputy Clark Cottom told The Brazil Times deputies responded to a report of the dead body off a gravel roadway one mile north of State Road 42 near the county line at approximately 6 p.m., Saturday.
Republicans hold majority in county positions
In the Clay County 2012 Election Tuesday, Republicans almost swept the board for commissioner and county council positions. All of the following election result totals are based off of 22 of the 23 precincts. For Commissioner District 1, Bryan Allender edged out Jack Withers by only 189 votes, winning with 50.9 percent of the county's votes. For Commissioner District 2, Tony Fenwick, Brazil, won with a total of 5,867 votes, with a percentage of 55.26 of the votes. Meanwhile, in the race for County Council, At-Large, the three candidates to take office include Pat Heffner, John Nicoson and current County Council President Mike McCullough.
Students pay tribute to area Veterans
East Side Elementary celebrated Veterans Day Friday, Nov. 9, at 10 a.m., with a special program from the fifth-grade classes. All grade levels were present to witness the program performed by Floy Galbriath and Ellen Packard's fifth-grade students. Local veterans and family members were also in attendance.
After two weeks, Task Force 7 comes home
Start spreading the news. Members of Task Force 7 are home from New York after two weeks of post-Hurricane Sandy emergency response activity. And like the song says, if you can make it there, you'll make it anywhere. That's exactly how the 23 emergency service personnel who rolled into Cloverdale Sunday afternoon in a convoy of safety vehicles from five counties feel after their two-week deployment to the East Coast as the Indiana Department of Homeland Security District 7 Incident Management Assistance Team (IMAT). Clay County was represented by Emergency Management Agency Director Bryan Husband, Van Buren Township Fire Chief Tod Haring and Van Buren firefighter Michael Short.
Bench dedication honors fallen soldier Arronn Fields
Members of the Knightsville community honored Spc. Arronn David Fields on Tuesday, dedicating a bench in his name. Fields died from injuries he sustained during a rocket-propelled grenade attack in Afghanistan May 21. Members of Fields' family were in attendance including his niece and nephew. Pastor Richard McShanog led the dedication. "I know he loved his family and he loved his country," McShanog said. "Anyone who puts on the uniform of the Untied States military is someone to be respected and to be appreciated, but I think what I heard that stands out the most to me, is that (Aaronn) also loved his God."
Sheriff's department warns of increasing drug problem in Brazil
The Clay County Sheriff's Department is in the midst of combating an increasing problem. "Last year, the state passed a law that banned the selling of certain synthetic drugs with certain chemicals," Sheriff Mike Heaton said. "The manufacturers changed the chemical makeup, but it's still a dangerous product." Incense, which releases fragrant smoke when burned, is being sold in local convenient stores and gas stations. "We know what the intentions are in buying that product," Heaton said. "It's not to burn incense, it's to smoke and ingest it, which in itself is dangerous to do." Heaton wanted to warn the community to stay away from the product, as well as to ask retailers not to sell it. The United States Attorney General's Office is targeting businesses that sell the product. If someone has been convicted of using the synthetic drug, the U.S. Attorney General goes after the retailer's license.
Home fire displaces Brazil family
A Brazil family was temporarily displaced following a house fire Sunday evening. At approximately 7:20 p.m., firefighters were dispatched to the residence at 407 E. Blaine St., Brazil. According to Brazil Fire Department Fire Chief Jake Bennett, William Fagg, an occupant of the home, was at home at the time of the fire, adding Fagg had heard a smoke alarm go off. "It looks like it started in a bedroom on the southeast side of the house," Bennett said. Firefighters contained the fire to one room, but smoke and water damage made the home unlivable.
Bridge repair bids opened
During the Clay County Commissioners' special meeting Tuesday, County Attorney Eric Somheil opened bids for bridge repairs.
For Bridge No. 14, the bids were as follows:
* Bls Contractors, Bowling Green, for $43,730, and
* Brown's Land Improvements, Staunton, for $18,500.
For Bridge No. 155, the bids were as follows:
* Bls Contractors for $30,300, and
* Brown's Land Improvements for $18,500.
For Bridge No. 225, the bids were as follows:
* Bls Contractors for $77,635, and
* Brown's Land Improvements for $21,050.
The commissioners were concerned about the large differences in the bids. The commissioners accepted the bid quotes and are taking them under advisement.
Pursuit leads to two arrests
A pursuit through three counties recently led to the arrest of two Clay County men. According to Clay County Sheriff Mike Heaton, officials were notified Wednesday evening in regard to the theft of a vehicle. Heaton said officials with the Brazil Police Department were on the lookout for John Clark, 21, Brazil, who was allegedly wanted for Battery with Bodily Injury. On Wednesday, officials received a call from family of Clark claiming he had allegedly stolen a vehicle. Heaton said someone close to the family or a family member followed the vehicle, but lost it in the Staunton area. Clay County Sheriff's Department Deputy Jason Frazier, however, saw the vehicle traveling eastbound on State Road 42 and attempted a traffic stop. The vehicle did not stop and a chase ensued. Heaton said the subject driving the alleged stolen vehicle veered onto a county road in Greene County off SR 48, lost control of the vehicle and went through a field into a residential yard. However, the subject regained control and started to come back onto the roadway. Heaton said Dep. Frazier then hit the vehicle with his own patrol car, stopping the pursuit.
Interpretive panel installed on U.S. 40
For close to a decade, officials with the Indiana National Road Association (INRA) have worked on a project. And now it has come to fruition. On Thursday, INRA officials met with members of the Clay County Historical Society in front of the Clay County Historical Museum as a crew from The Hoosier Company, Indianapolis, installed an interpretive panel, depicting a piece of history regarding National Road, now known as United States 40. Clay County INRA representative John Mace told The Brazil Times the project had been ongoing for several years. Mace said the panel in front of the museum is one of 15 spread across the state in the eight counties U.S. 40 runs through.
Board discusses new hotel plans
The Clay County Redevelopment Commission met Wednesday to discuss the infrastructure at Interstate-70 and State Road 59. According to Dustin Whalen of B & T Drainage and Excavating, Marshall, Ill., the infrastructure is 75 percent complete. The remaining 25 percent of work needed to complete the project is currently delayed because of necessary supplies. The suppliers should have everything needed by early next week. Whalen told the commission the infrastructure is expected to be complete in two-and-a-half weeks.
Two arrested for molestation
Two Clay County men were taken into custody late Friday evening and arrested on preliminary charges of child molestation. According to information provided by the Clay County Sheriff's Department (CCSD), Tommy K. Edmonson, 64, Turner, and Jared Cooksey, 19, also of Turner, were both arrested on charges related to a child molestation investigation conducted by the department. The investigation began Nov. 21, when officials were contacted by Child Protective Services in regard to the possible molestation of a Clay County youth.
During the Clay County Commissioners meeting Monday, Commissioner Paul Sinders presented Commissioners Charlie Brown and Jack Withers with plaques to thank them for their time in office. "I want to thank them for their help, their work, their efforts and their dedication on behalf of the citizens of this county," Sinders said. "I've appreciated their help, cooperation, discussions and assistance these past six years that I've worked with them. Commissioners as a county executive do have to make many important decisions for the county." Withers has served the county for 14 years, and Brown has served for 36 years. Sinders wished them both the best for their future.
CCS committee vote on curriculum for 2013
The Clay Community Schools Central Curriculum Committee met Tuesday, Dec. 4, to discuss and vote on changes in the course description booklet for the 2013-14 school year. The committee, led by Kathy Knust, coordinator of curriculum and instruction for CCS, is made up of approximately 40 teachers, students, parents, administrators and community members. The committee exists to give members a chance to provide input in curriculum development. "This committee is a small part of what runs a school corporation on an every day basis," Knust said.
Clark finishes Haiti internship
Brazil resident Justin Clark recently came back from an estimated 5-month internship in Haiti. Clark is back in the United States until January, when he will go back to Haiti full-time for a permanent missionary position. "I'll be there until God tells me to go somewhere else," Clark said. Clark went to St. Louis PuNorde, to help with maintenance at the Northwest Haiti Christian Mission, an Independent Christian Church ministry and development organization committed to the people of the Northwest region of Haiti and dedicated to establishing and partnering with indigenous churches.
Missing Illinois man located
On Thursday, The Clay County Sheriff's Department concluded an investigation involving the discovery of a body along Interstate-70. According to officials, during the evening hours of Dec. 5, dispatch received a call from a semi-driver traveling along the western part of Clay County on I-70. The caller then stated while traveling along the shoulder, he noticed what appeared to be a bumper of a vehicle resting in a body of water. Clay County Sheriff's deputies began searching the area and located a vehicle that was partially resting in a small body of water on the south side of I-70, near the Clay-Vigo county line. A license plate inquiry on the plate attached to the vehicle revealed the truck was a part of a missing persons investigation from the Mt. Vernon, Ill., area.
Students win Clay County Health Dept. tobacco prevention contest
The Clay County Health Department has continued to promote a tobacco-free community through education and recently presented its 2012 Tobacco Prevention Presentations to all Clay County fifth-grade students. The presentations took place during the months of October and November.The program stresses the dangers of using tobacco products, such as cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, as well as the dangers of secondhand smoke. The department's annual poster/billboard contest is also part of the presentation. Fifth-grade students across the county had the opportunity to design a poster relating to tobacco prevention. The posters were judged Nov. 29, and one winner from each school was chosen.
Board thanks McCullough
The Brazil Park and Recreation Board met for their regular meeting Tuesday, Dec. 11. The board first heard from Mayor Brian Wyndham who commended the board for all of its hard work. "This is a thankless job," Wyndham said, "but you do it because you like the community. You've made the whole park system what it is, and we get a lot of good comments about the parks. I don't want you to think your work goes unappreciated." Wyndham also complimented Board Secretary Caroline McCullough who will be leaving the Park Board at the end of the year. Wyndham presented McCullough with a plaque honoring her for her service. Board President Ruthann Jeffries said the board would plant a tree in McCullough's honor in the spring of 2013.
The Northview High School Fine Arts Department presented its 2012 Christmas Spectacular finale Sunday at the high school. According to Fine Arts Department Head Bob Medworth, the three-day event went quite well this year. "It was fantastic," Medworth said. "We had huge crowds, good crowds. I think this was one of our better shows. "People were saying this is the official start of their Christmas season." Performances took place Dec. 13, Dec. 15, and Sunday. The Dec. 15, performance included a special holiday dinner with featured entertainment.
Schools under Code Yellow through week
Although the end of the semester is just days away, there will be a sense of heightened security on the campuses of Clay Community Schools for the remainder of the week. Following the horrific tragedy Friday, Dec. 14, when a lone gunman walked into the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., killing 26 people -- including 20 children -- Clay Community Schools (CCS) officials elected to have all buildings institute a Code Yellow, or soft lockdown, for the remainder of the week. "We're emphasizing the plans we have in place," CCS Director of Buildings and Grounds Tom Reberger told The Brazil Times. "We sent a memo out (Friday) reminding everyone to review their plans. We're more concerned about someone who could be a copycat. "All schools are operating under a Code Yellow," Reberger continued. "All extra doors will be locked once students are in the building. Everybody is on heightened alert. All the doors are locked, but this is our standard procedure as far as a lockdown."
Memorial for Veterans taking shape
When Nick French was approached by some local residents asking him if he could help with the construction of a monument honoring war veterans, he was ready to step up to the plate. "Two individuals who were working on the monument approached me about helping and I said I would love to," French recently told The Brazil Times.
French owns the monument business French Monuments. French said those responsible for putting together the idea had a general concept for the monument when they came to him. From there, he sketched out a design. "They had the concept," he said. "I took a look at it and thought that is something we are capable of doing." The monument, honoring war veterans from the War on Terror, will include the names of Marine Cpl. Gregory Stultz and Indiana National Guard Spc. Arronn Fields, both Clay County natives who gave their lives in the war.
Donations to help 75 families
The community of Clay County has been collecting toys this holiday season for local children in need. Clay County Toys for Tots has 75 families with more than 200 children who will participate in the distribution day Saturday, Dec. 22. The organization's goal was to collect enough toys for all the children in the area who were in need.
"We have had such a wonderful outpouring from the community," Suzanne Mathis, committee member, said. "It has just knocked our socks off. The community has been absolutely wonderful this year and have really supported Toys for Tots."
December 20, 2012
Five arrested for suspicion of manufacturing methamphetamine
Five Brazil residents were arrested early Wednesday morning on several charges. According to officials with the Brazil Police Department, at approximately 9:30 a.m., Wednesday, investigators served a search warrant at 1002 N. McGuire St., for the suspected manufacturing of methamphetamine. During the search of the property, two "one pot" methamphetamine laboratories, methamphetamine precursors, methamphetamine and a stolen handgun were discovered. Five Brazil residents were arrested after the discovery, including Jerry Jones, 49, Laurie Jones, 50, Sheldon Harrington, 23, Patrick Huff Sr., 44, and Veronica Huff, 41.
December 21, 2012
Local business implements new texting service for customers
Miller's IGA, a staple in Clay City, recently teamed up with CaspersSMS, an Indiana-based company, to start communicating with their customers through text messages.
Since implementing text messages, Miller's IGA has sent out one text per week, advertising sales on individual items along with 5 percent off any purchase.
In order to sign up for the service, customers text the keyword "Miller" to 227-737. Miller explains that this will allow patrons of the store to receive special deals and weekly ads before anyone else.
December 23, 2012
The Daughters of the American Revolution Clay County chapter met at the home of Jodi Lohman recently. There, the group honored two Clay County students for their exceptional essays.
Bailey Pell, a senior at Northview High School, and Casey Truax, a senior at Clay City High School (CCHS) won the DAR Good Citizen Committee's essay contest.
Main ideas of the essays were focused on loyalty, patriotism, American ideals and how they, as students, incorporate qualities of a good citizen.
December 26, 2012
On Wednesday, Clay Countians woke up to blizzard-like conditions.
Residents had to battle the elements on their way to work. Some stayed home and others ---- while on their way to work ---- weren't as lucky.
A storm front passed through the Wabash Valley early Wednesday morning, dropping several inches of snow.
Along its path, it also created wind gusts of up to 35 mph.
December 27, 2012
Board of Works approves fire protection contract
On Thursday, the Brazil Board of Public Work and Safety approved a contract between the Brazil Fire Department and Brazil Township for fire protection.
According to Brazil Fire Chief Jake Bennett, the contract specifies fire protection for the unincorporated areas of the township.
"(Mayor Brian Wyndham) and I spoke with (Brazil Township Trustee T.J. Sneddon) and discussed some things about the contract," Bennett said. "Everything is OK with this."