Home  Subscribe  Advertising  Community  About Us Archives

   P.O. Box 70, Woodsfield, OH  43793   


Below are links to portions of this week's news articles. For the full story, pick up a paper at your local newsstand or send $1 with your name/address to P.O. Box 70, Woodsfield, OH  43793.


May 14, 2009

Graysville Broadband Opening Celebrated

Taking part in the ribbon cutting of the GMN Tri-County CAC, Inc. Graysville-Monroe County High Speed Wireless Broadband Community Center held May 7 were, from left, front: Larry Ullman, Phil Cole, OACAA Executive Director; Roger McCauley, COAD Executive Director; Jerri Dahler, representing Congressman Charlie Wilson; Brandon Kerns, representing Senator George Voinovich; Carol Costanzo, USDA Rural Development; Jean Wilson, representing Senator Sherrod Brown; Gary Ricer, GMN Executive Director and CEO; Darla Harmon, co-owner of the property on which the tower sets; State Representative Jennifer Garrison; Jim Archer, who authored the two Broadband grants;  and Ron Mellon, USDA Rural Development; back: John Pyles, Monroe County Commissioner; Heber Piatt of Piatt Equipment; and Mike Calevski., representing Congressman Zack Space. The Center has ten computer stations fully equipped for public use free for two years.

by Martha Ackerman
Staff Writer
        A nice crowd was on hand May 7 for the Ribbon Cutting-Open House ceremony for the GMN Tri-County CAC, Inc. Graysville-Monroe County High Speed Wireless Broadband Community Center. Gary Ricer, GMN Director and CEO, welcomed everyone and introduced the speakers. Opening prayer was offered by Jim Archer, GMN Planner and author of the two grants bringing broadband to Monroe County.
        The Community Center provides 10 computer stations fully equipped for public use free of charge for two years. Daily instruction and training on internet usage is available. Bi-monthly seminars will be conducted by professionals from federal, state and local service agency in addition to GMN staff. “Our goal is to provide opportunities for residents to earn college accredited degrees here in Graysville,” said Ricer.
        The project was funded by a $316,840 USDA grant with additional contributions from Monroe County Department of Job and Family Services, Graysville & Community Volunteer Fire Department Building and Grounds Committee, Piatt Equipment, Washington Township Trustees, residents of the Graysville community and GMN Tri County CAC, Inc.
        The 200 foot broadband tower sits on property owned by Darla Harmon and her son Dammond. Ricer noted that the only payment they receive is free high speed internet. “It’s a wonderful agreement they have made for their community,” said Ricer.
        “This project is a poster child for broadband,” said Ron Mellon, USDA Rural Development. “GMN Tri County was aggressive and competed for the grant. The result is the broadband in Woodsfield and Graysville; it is obviously an example for others.”
        Mellon went on to explain that with the American Recovery Act, two-and-a-half billion dollars has been set aside for broadband in rural areas. The money will be distributed through grants and loans.
        “I share in the celebration of another achievement by GMN,” said Carol Costanzo, USDA Rural Development, Marietta office.
        “We congratulate the community and Gary for the success of this project,” said Brandon Kerns, who represented U.S. Senator George Voinovich. “There is a group in Washington that feel broadband is essential for economic development.”
        “We are pleased Graysville has broadband,” said Jean Wilson, who represented U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown, noting the Senator had voted for the program to put money into broadband. “You saw the opportunity for the Commun-ity Connectivity grant and you ran with it.”
        U.S. Congressman Zack Space, who represents Guern-sey County, sent Mike Calevski to the open house. Calevski told the group that Congressman Space recognizes the benefits of broadband to economic development. “USDA Rural Development is a true friend of Southeastern Ohio,” said Calevski.
        Jerri Dahler, of Congress-man Charlie Wilson’s Marietta office, said, “We can live in the rural life we treasure and still remain connected to the rest of the world through broadband.”
        State Representative Jenni-fer Garrison presented Ricer with a commendation from the House of Representatives. “It’s terrific to be here,” she said. “I’m pleased with the community effort that has brought broadband to the community.” Referring to the recent school levy passage, Garrison said, “We worked together to do our best for the children.”
        “Thanks for the dedication in making this happen,” said Monroe County Commission President John Pyles. “You make us proud!”     Also attending were Commissioners Carl Davis and Tim Price.
        Phil Cole, OACAA Execu-tive Director, and Roger McCauley, COAD Executive Director, also extended their congratulations to GMN and the community for coming together and getting this project to fruition.
        GMN’s Broadband started with 86 customers and now, according to Ricer, there are over 500. There are already 50 customers in the Graysville area with a large waiting list, said Ricer. Pat Britten is the director and Nathan Book is the technician. Other employees are Duane Thompson, Mike Henry and clerk Pat May.
        After the ribbon cutting, Graysville Community Center members provided a delicious luncheon which was enjoyed by everyone attending.

<Make Sure Your Address is Posted

        An important phase of the county’s E-911 mapping project is underway.
        Work on the Geographic Information System, being done by Digital Data Tech-nologies (DDTI) of Columbus, began May 11. The firm is collecting road centerlines and addressing data. All residents and businesses should make sure their numeric addresses are posted and visible.
        The company will drive all public and private Monroe County roads in vans outfitted with specialized equipment for data collection. The firm will collect data that is of immense value to the county and used to enhance the 911 system. DDTI will focus on collecting current address information and street centerlines, as well as other road features such as bridges, culverts, railroad crossings and signage clearly visible from the roadway. 
        In addition to  enhancing the E-911 service, establishing the state’s Location Based Re-sponce System (LBRS) data provides for more detailed local map data that can often introduce additional roadway safety funding opportunities. The data collection process will also clean and update the existing address database.
        DDTI projects an implementation date within 90 days.
        “We’ll send out two-person teams in highly equipped vans to drive every road and verify every address in Monroe County,” said DDTI project coordinator David Cordray. “Then we’ll process that data in a way that’s accessible to all levels of government, which will have a significant impact on the quality of data that public safety  officials rely on to respond to 911 calls.”
        The LBRS-grade data will enable dispatchers to accurately map wireline and, potentially, wireless calls to 911.

<        Reich’s Legacy of Service Recognized

Clarence Reich

        Clarence Reich of Woodsfield has been selected to  be inducted into the 2009 Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame posthumously. According to Barbara E. Riley, director of the Ohio Department of Aging, Reich is one of 12 other exceptional older Ohioans to be honored during a ceremony at the Capitol Theatre in Columbus May 26.
        Clarence Reich devoted his life to his family, his farm and his community. He lived on the family farm, where he was born, for 94 years. He and his wife, Melba, were married for 67 years and raised milking cows and beef cattle, pigs, chickens, all types of crops and hay for the livestock. They discontinued the dairy operation when Clarence was 65 but continued to have beef cattle and pigs until he was about 85.
        He served on the Board of Directors of the Woodsfield Savings Bank for 26 years, starting in 1968, and was president for five years. He served as a Center Township Trustee and as a trustee for OPERS. He has been a member of the Farmers and Sportsman Club since 1936.
        He also was a member of the Moose Lodge, Knights of Pythias Lodge, Rolling Hills Ruritan Club and AARP, serving as vice president of the AARP group when he was 95 years old. Mr. Reich was active in the St. Paul’s United Church of Christ until he was 97. He and Melba hosted the county's first foreign exchange student in 1959 through the 4-H program.
        He was on the Monroe County Fair Board for 18 years. He served many years as treasurer and as fair secretary, managing the fair. He also was a big supporter of the fair, attending all but one from the late 1910s through 2008 (he missed 1989 due to a double knee replacement).
        The Reichs were honored at the Monroe County Black Walnut Festival in 2002 when they were chosen to be the first to ring the county's Bicentennial Bell. His 65-year involvement in the organization led to his induction into the Monroe County Farm Bureau Hall of Fame in 1997. The Reichs also were very active with their Farm Bureau Council for more than 60 years.
        Mr. Reich was very active with the Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) and was elected for 42 years to serve on the Monroe County SWCD Board, including 19 years as its chairman. His work was honored when he was inducted into the Ohio SWCD Supervisor Hall of Fame in 2006. He also served as the Monroe representative to the regional Buckeye Hills Resource Conservation and Development Council for five years.

<Mail Carrier Credited with Saving a Life

Steve Petho

        Although he shrugs his shoulders as if it were an everyday occurrence, Clarington mail carrier Steve Petho is being credited with saving the life of an elderly woman.
        As Petho, a Powhatan Point resident, delivered mail to the woman’s home around noon on May 7, he noticed a Fed Ex package in the door - and knew that it had been there the prior day. “I knew there was something wrong,” he said. He indicated the mailbox also held mail he had delivered May 6.
        Petho went back to the post office and asked the postmaster to call and have someone check on the woman. Being a small town, Postmaster Marissa Eikleberry called a friend of the woman. When she was unable to reach her, she called Fire Chief Jim Hunt who immediately went to the woman’s  home.
        By then, Petho had gone to cover the remainder of his mail route.
        Chief Hunt said he found the woman lying on the kitchen floor. He said she had fallen at least a day, and maybe two days prior. It was noted that she has no family members living in Clarington.
        The woman was taken by emergency squad to Belmont Community Hospital, Bellaire.
        “I’m glad she’s okay,” said Petho. “I’m glad she was found in time.”
        According to Eikleberry, watching out for older folks is something Clarington mail carriers do.


<New Scam in Town

        There is no end to the way scams and/or fraudulent dealings can be dealt to an unsuspecting population.
        Monroe County Sheriff Charles Black, Jr. warns that men alleging they have leftover blacktop for sale are scamming unsuspecting citizens.
        An elderly person recently contracted for blacktop on his/her driveway. The cost quoted was between $2,000 and $3,000. When the blacktop was down, the customer was handed a bill for $8,000 and was paid. Although sealer had not been applied to the blacktop, the contractor had his money and was off to smooth talk his next victim.
    According to Black, there was no name or telephone number on the bill.
    Black said the "contractor" is apparently saying he has product left over from a job and wants to get rid of it.
   The sheriff is advising countians to beware of this and similar schemes.
        If anyone has any information about such activities, they are asked to report the information the sheriff's office at 740-472-1612.
        There seems to be no end to the number of ways scams are carried out. Beware.

<Woodsfield to Get Stimulus Funding for Waterlines

by Arlean Selvy
        “It couldn’t come at a better time,” said Woodsfield Village Administrator Jeff Woodell. He was talking about a $206,000 stimulus package that will allow the village to loop waterlines from behind Woodsfield Nursing and Rehabilitation Center to Moose Ridge. As well, about 3,400 feet of  waterline will be replaced from Paul Street to Hillcrest. The lines have not been updated since 1902.
        Of the $206,000, half will be in the form of a grant and the other half is a zero percent 20-year loan.
        In addition, Woodell reported the village will receive $12,900 in CDBG funding for replacement of a booster pump. He said this will assist all residents and push water to the Switzerland Water District. He said they will also receive three automated external defibrillators through a CDBG project requested by Monroe County EMS and approved on the county level. Both CDBG projects must first earn the blessing of the state.
        Council approved a motion to pay $1,500 toward local share for the AEDs. If approved by the state, placement will be in the municipal building, fire station and police cruiser.
        Officials, on a motion by Councilman Bill Moore, authorized Woodell to proceed with the necessary steps to prepare village land to be plotted at Oaklawn Cemetery. According to Woodell, it will take about $3,000 to have the land leveled and resod. He said it may be three years before it is ready to plot out.
        In an unrelated matter, council approved construction of a retaining wall at Oaklawn.
        Woodell again called for residents not allow grass cuttings to be blown or swept into the streets. He said the drains become blocked with grass.
        Rich Schuerman, coordinator, Monroe County Emergen-cy Management Agency, thanked council for allowing use of village property to hold an EMA training exercise.
        Greg Ogden thanked council for allowing a phone bank to be set up in council chambers in order to call voters about the school bond levy.


< Obituaries

        Audrey D. Barrows, 84, New Matamoras, died April 29, 2009, at Trinity East Medical Center, Steubenville. She was born July 8, 1924 in Castlewood, Va., a daughter of the late Joe and Sudie Litton.     Condolences can be expressed at www.bauerturner.com.

        Jeannette R. Hartline, 62, Cain Ridge Road, Clarington, died May 3, 2009, at Wetzel County Hospital, New Martinsville. She was born Sept. 3, 1946, in Captina, W.Va., the daughter of the late Orville D. and Janice French Baughman. Sympathy expressions at grisellfuneralhomes.com.

        Gerald L. Burke, 45, 510 Eastern Ave., Woodsfield, died May 6, 2009 in Woodsfield. He was born May 5, 1964 at Bellaire, a son of Luther and Frances “Frannie” Urbanek Burke.    Online condolences may be expressed at www.wattersfuneralhome.com.

        Cecil Willard Saffell, 76, Jerusalem, died May 1, 2009, at Barnesville Hospital. He was born Feb. 24, 1933 in Belmont County, a son of the late Cecil Saffell and Mary McFarland Saffell.       Condolences can be expressed at www.bauerturner.com.

        Dorothy Jane (Dotti) Kamp Geyer, 48, Norwich, died of ovarian cancer at 8:52 a.m., May 10, 2009, at Genesis Hospice, Morrison House, Zanesville. She was born Aug. 15, 1960, in Wheeling, a daughter of Nile Kamp of Woodsfield, and the late Jane Feldner Kamp.

        James A. Burnside, 80, Woodsfield, died May 4, 2009. He was born June 3, 1928.  Online condolences may be shared at www.mslfuneralhome.com.

        Elsie Marie Atzenhoefer, 87, died May 9, 2009 surrounded by her loving family. She was born Jan. 7, 1922, in Akron, the last of 14 children of the late George and Adelaide Slawter.    Online condolences may be offered at www.harperfh.net

        Helen Grimm Marsh, 86, died peacefully May 4, 2009 at Riverside Hospital surrounded by loving family. She was born in Woodsfield, a daughter of the late Mary and Orlando Grimm.
Condolences can be expressed at www.bauerturner.com

        Kathy Schwaben, 76, Woodsfield, died May 1, 2009, at her home. She was born Aug. 20, 1932 in Wiesbaden, Germany, a daughter of the late Jakob and Maria Weissner. Condolences can be expressed at www.bauerturner.com

<Our Readers Write:

<Around the Burnside

I appreciate voters in the Switzerland of Ohio School District for providing new school facilities for our great-grandchildren and most of the present and all future students in the district. You made history on Tuesday. We will not have to make excuses for our school facilities and have them known as the worst in the state. I feel it was a big step forward for our school system and county.
        The Time is Now committee and all of those who helped them get the true story of the need for improved facilities to the voters in the district did an excellent job. I do not know what else they could have done to make known the need for new school facilities in the SOLSD. What else can you say but thanks.
        Now that we will be getting new school facilities I came across a little problem some of you math experts might want to work.
        You have your four black cows and three brown cows that give as much milk in five days as three black cows and five brown cows give in four days. Which color cow is the better milker?
        I’ve heard folks say, “I’m on a roll.” Maybe I have been on a roll some time. I really think I’ve been on a roll. First I attended the Woodsfield Elementary program, Sunday I attended the Pioneer Larger Parish spring event where the Caretti Family conducted the worship service through word and song, then to top things off the Bond levy to build new facilities for our school students carried by more than a thousand votes. If this isn’t being on a roll, I don’t know what it is. As Tony the tiger says, “It’s Grrrrreat!”
        I understand a happy group of folks gathered at Traditions to await the results of the vote. I would guess things got happier and happier as the results came in.
        I thought about attending but it fell on Tuesday night and that’s my night. My favorite TV shows, “NCIS” and “Mentalist” are on at 8 and 9 p.m. I allow very little to interfere with this time frame. Folks know not to call me on the phone during this period. I got the good news over the TV. I don’t trust my VCR.
        Did you realize we all can’t be shining examples, but we can twinkle a little bit? Or maybe, if you had everything, where would you put it all?
        Oh I almost forgot. While I was on a roll I had a lot of tests made of my blood. They all turned out to be what they should be so I guess I’ll be around to see some of the new buildings.
        One problem, since the bond levy passed with flying colors it’s tough to think of anything to write about. It does seem most every one is talking or maybe complaining about the rain we’ve been having. I guess maybe we’re never satisfied. I would like to see a couple of nice, warm, sun shiny days now and then. Cheer up, ride around and enjoy the dogwood and redbud trees showing their stuff. Hot days are coming.
        This is about the time of year many of my friends started taking off their shoes and started putting around in their bare feet. No more shoes until fall rolled round.
        Nowadays kids go nearly barefooted by wearing flip flops. I have seen a few the year around. I’m not sure but some say it might be better just to go barefooted. I still don’t know how kids can run in them, but they do.
        Your feet are really tough if you can walk around in a newly mown hayfield in your bare feet and it doesn’t bother you. I tried it once and it cured me of going without shoes. Now maybe if I had flip flops.
        If I remember correctly this was also marble season. Question, do kids play marbles anymore? I didn’t think so. I do think many of them still exercise their thumbs; however, it is operating a cell phone or a video game of some type. I once had a powder puff to put over my knuckles while playing marbles. Most of your friends would not let you use your steely as a shooter. I’d say we had as much fun playing marbles as kids do with their do-dads today. I lost all my marbles (no remarks please) when I went into the service. Dad used them all in his slingshot, trying to keep the birds out of our cherry tree. To be honest I’m trying to resist the urge to buy one of those Wii games. I could then go bowling like they can in the White House.
        It has been a long time coming. It came about when a majority of folks felt the need for new facilities and the plan was one that improved all areas of the county and according to unofficial count was approved by 59 percent of the voters. We must remember we are the Switzerland of Ohio School District, which we are one and must work together.
        Those of us who worked for and supported the levy are very happy with its passage. On the other hand, 41 percent voted against the levy. We cannot allow ourselves to criticize or feel badly toward those who voted against the levy. I mentioned earlier that we still live in America where we can vote. I would say everyone of the 6380 folks who voted had a reason for voting as they did. No one was standing there forcing them how to vote. We had a choice, yes, or no. As it turned out there were more yes than no. We all accept this and go on. Isn’t this better than living in a country where you can vote but do not have a choice?
        Oh yes, the answer to the math question is either the black or brown cows. Which one is up to you.
        There is no change of seasons in a loving heart; it’s always springtime.
        Sign at a church: Try us sometime.
        Bible Readings: (Mon.) Psalm 25:1-5; (Tues.) Proverbs 11:1-10; (Wed.) Isaiah 52:7-12; (Thurs.) Hebrews 10:35-11:3; (Fri.) Isaiah 12:1-6; (Sat.) Psalm 119:105-112; (Sun.) Ephesians 6:10-18.