October Proclaimed Breast Cancer Awareness Month
by Myrtle Smith
At the request of representatives of the American Cancer
Society, county commissioners proclaimed October as Breast
Cancer Awareness Month at a recent meeting. From left are Amy
Magorien, ACS health promotions coordinator; County
Commissioners Carl Davis, Tim Price and John Pyles; and Shirley
Brown, ACS volunteer.
Photo by Myrtle Smith
Commissioners recently proclaimed October as Breast Cancer
Awareness Month in Monroe
Shirley Brown, a key volunteer for the
Center, and Amy Magorien, ACS health
promotions coordinator, were present at the meeting when
officials signed the proclamation.
Commissioners encourage all women to learn about the signs of
breast cancer and ask all women over the age 40 to have a yearly
breast exam and monitoring.
This disease also affects men, and they need to be aware of the
signs as well. The Cancer
Center, located in the
Chamber of Commerce building, has information on all types of
cancer. They also have cookbooks, an outreach transportation
program, and as part of their Look Good, Feel Good program,
quality wigs are available to cancer patients.
According to discussion, there are three beauty shops in
Woodsfield who will wash and style the wigs for a small fee. The
transportation grant allows the Cancer
Center to provide
transportation to and from treatments for cancer patients. They
are currently helping 14 people in
County get to their
The VFW recently purchased and donated gas cards that are
available for cancer patients through the
Center. The resource center will
focus on getting more donations of gas cards. Anyone who is
interested in donating or volunteering can contact Shirley
H1N1 Confirmed In
The Monroe County Health Department has confirmed three cases of
H1N1 (Swine Flu) in
According to Linda Masters, administrator at the health
department, three school-aged children have been diagnosed with
H1N1. She said the schools are working to contain the disease
and reinforce prevention.
Although both Masters and School District Superintendent Larry
Elliott declined to say which school is involved, Masters said
all three children are Monroe
residents and all attend the same riverfront school. Masters
said school district principals are using all avenues of
According to Elliott, hand sanitizers are located in all schools
and staff members have been instructed to encourage hand
washing. He said the custodial staff has been instructed to
clean door knobs, hand rails and water fountains. Elliott noted
that “anything students touch” is to be cleaned to help prevent
the spread of flu.
“We do anticipate more cases,” said Elliott. “Swine flu is
present in the Ohio
and it’s a matter of time until it works its way through the
The superintendent said an “all call” has been made to parents
reminding them to keep sick children home as we go through the
Elliott said he’d met with school principals to discuss ways to
accommodate students with make-up work if they are absent for as
long as a week. He said the nursing staff has been instructed
to record attendance rates.
According to Masters, the health department is waiting for a
supply of vaccine to start immunizations in the
County schools. She noted
Powhatan Elementary is already scheduled for vaccinations
through the Belmont County Health Department.
Does it matter who is elected in the Nov. 3 school board
election? Absolutely! These individuals will make decisions
affecting the quality of life in our communities, the education
of our children and grandchildren, and the spending of our tax
dollars. School board members set the direction for public
education for our state and nation.
Serving on a school board is a tremendous responsibility. By
law, school board members are charged with providing educational
opportunities for your community’s youth. School board members
should conscientiously work in the best interests of all
students and all citizens. That’s why voters in every community
should take the time to educate themselves about the candidates
and vote for the candidates who are right for the job.
If you want to have a say in who will make the decisions
affecting your local schools, your children and the spending of
your tax dollars, then learn about the issues and cast your vote
for the responsible, qualified person who you believe can do the
best job serving on your local board of education. Your
community deserves the best. Our students deserve nothing less.
Vote on Nov. 3.
Tawana Lynn Keels, Pres.
School Boards Association Member, Princeton City
and Great Oaks Institute of Technology and Career Development, Cincinnati
22-Month Old Gavin Matz:
He Takes It All In Stride
by Arlean Selvy
Although his daily play is closely monitored and he goes through
periods when he cannot take food by mouth, Gavin Matz is a happy
and pleasant child.
Gavin is the son of Lewis W. “Ogg” Matz and Lisa Matz of
“He’s the happiest and most pleasant kid,” said his mother, “I
can’t believe it.”
Gavin is 22-months old and a victim of VACTERLS association.
VACTERL is an acronym in which each of the letters stands for
one or more types of malformation.
The ‘V’ stands for vertebrae, which are the bones of the spinal
column. Gavin has 14 sets of ribs instead of the normal 12 sets.
According to his doctors, Gavin’s case is unique in that most
youngsters with VACTERL only have one extra set of ribs. This
set is located in the lumbar (bottom of spinal column). Gavin
also has an extra Cervical set of ribs (top of the spinal
column) - which is a rare condition. The cervical set is near
the nerve complex and paralysis is a possibility if the child
should suffer an injury. For this reason he is watched closely.
The ‘A’ if for imperforated anus or anal artresia, or an anus
that does not open to the outside of the body. Gavin has a
‘C’ - cardiac defects. Gavin has two superior vena cavas,
vessels, which carry blood to the heart. He also has a heart
‘T’ stands for tracheoesophageal fistula (TEF), which means an
abnormal connection between the trachea (windpipe) and the
esophagus (food tube to stomach). Gavin was born with TEF and
developed another one a few month ago, which is very rare.
‘E’ - esophageal atresia. Gavin’s esophagus did not connect to
the stomach when he was born.
Gavin has a feeding tube that connects to his stomach and to his
Although Gavin has periods of time when he can eat by mouth, he
is currently a patient in Nationwide Children’s Hospital,
Columbus, where he is connected to a
“He doesn’t understand it when he can’t eat,” said Lisa. “And he
doesn’t understand why he has to be in the hospital.” His
mother noted also that Gavin “... kinda takes things in stride.”
The 22-month old has chalked up 21 hospital admissions in his
short life. His current hospital stay is due to complications
from his most recent surgery. According to his mother, Gavin’s
esophagus read more in the Oct. 29 Beacon
Offices to Cut Employee Hours
In order to balance the 2009 budget by the end of the year, Monroe
commissioners have cut department funds, increased revenue
receipts and three offices will cut hours.
Jeanette Harter, who works with the county budget, told
commissioners a reduction of $90,000 was made from the sheriff’s
prison housing appropriation. She said they now have about
$17,000 to operate on from now until the end of the year. Harter
noted that, “In light of them having more prisoners in the past
few weeks, $17,000 is probably not going to get it.” According
to discussion, prisoners are currently housed in both Noble and
At the Oct. 13 meeting officials transferred $5,000 from the
auditor’s budget to the treasurer’s budget. The action was taken
following discussion about Auditor Pandora Neuhart giving two of
her employees rate increases.
Harter found, while looking for ways to balance the budget, that
there were increases for two of the auditor’s employees in 2008.
She said that in January, 2009, there was no change but that on
or before October of 2009, each of the two employees received a
$3,120 increase per year. It was noted the raise is equivalent
to $1.50 an hour. Harter said the increases came from the real
estate fund as opposed to the general fund allocation.
According to information obtained from Neuhart, the real estate
fund is generated from certain fees such as appraisals and is
not money allocated by commissioners from the county’s budget.
She said the money can be used for certain things, such as
reappraisals and pay for those who work with that area.
Neuhart, at the commissioners’ Oct. 26 meeting, asked that the
$5,000 be returned to her budget. She said she currently has
$784.50 in the em-ployees’ salary line item to pay for all
payroll and budgetary work until the end of the year.
Neuhart read a statement concerning previous cuts in her budget
and explained the raises for the two employees. She wrote: “ ...
in the past we have paid our appraisal company to input
information into the computer, which generally costs $10,000 to
$15,000.” She said she and the two employees talked it over and
the two decided they would do the work done by the appraisal
firm in order to realize a savings for the county. “I felt if
they were willing to save the county that much money, they
should be compensated for read more in the Monroe
Beacon's Oct. 29 edition
Resolution Signed, Project Labor Agreement Possible
by Myrtle Smith
A resolution authorizing
County commissioners to
execute a Project Labor Agreement was adopted at the Oct. 19
meeting of commissioners
William Hutchinson, business manager,
Building and Construction
Trades Council AFL-CIO, and other union representatives
presented commissioners with the resolution. The document
authorizes the board to execute a Project Labor Agreement (PLA)
with the Upper
Build-ing and Constructions Trade Council and its affiliated
local unions for certain construction projects undertaken by
commissioners. It also allows them to establish responsible
contracting standards for contractors and subcontractors
performing work in construction projects in Monroe County.
said, “This would guarantee local area people who are skilled in
their trades to have a chance to do the job.” According to
Hutchinson, the resolution has to be in
place in order to enter into a PLA.
It was noted that the bid process for the Monroe County
assisted living project has already been completed; therefore
the resolution would not affect the project.
Matt Brake, E-911 project coordinator, gave an update on the
system. The E-911 system is located at the Monroe County
Sheriff’s Office, and the back-up system will be housed at the
EMA offices at the county airport.
Equipment for the backup system has been delivered and is
waiting for electrical outlets to be installed.
Sheriff Charles Black voiced his concern about the problems with
software equipment and repair services. He said there are
software issues that need to be resolved. Black strongly
suggested contracting with Staley’s Communication, the previous
provider, since they have a maintenance repair service included
in their cost.
“Out of necessity for public safety, we can’t shortcut this,”
said Black. “If the system crashes, we won’t have
Commissioners met at the proposed gas well site with Beck
Energy. The well will be located near the Woodsfield soccer
field; however, the soccer field will not be affected.
According to Jeannette Harter, director, Job and Family
Services, there was a meeting with laid-off Ormet employees on
Oct 14 to discuss the services JFS has available to them. She
also provided commissioners with an updated listing of childcare
providers as well as a resolution to approve the contract with
JFS for child care. The resolution was approved.
Approval was given for a snow removal agreement between JFS and
Woodsfield Greenhouse, which submitted the lowest quote.
Commissioners adopted a resolution submitted by Harter which
would remove the education supplemental pay for degree
employees. This change would not affect current employees who
hold a degree and are getting the supplemental pay. However, it
would apply to future hires, including rehires not holding a
position with children’s services. Those who are hired or
rehired into a children’s services position would be eligible
for the education supplemental pay; all other positions would
not be eligible. The resolution was approved.
An executive session was held between commissioners and Harter
regarding contracts. No action was taken.
Nothing is harder than getting down from your high horse.
To share with a friend is to see twice the beauty.
The following editorial was in the Journal-Leader 70 years ago.
“The worst form of propaganda now being disseminated in the United States is wholly fallacious
and entirely malicious suggestion that this country cannot stay
out of war. The United States can and will stay out of war if
the patriotic men and women of this country actively and
faithfully perform their patriotic duty.” I was a freshman in
high school at this time. How a few years can change things.
“Thar’s gold in them thar hills.” at least that seems to be what
TV commercials try to make us believe. Get all your old gold
junk you do not want and carry out the money. Buy and sell gold
you keep hearing,;sounds like fun. One old boy sold what looked
like a class ring and got a hundred and fifty dollars for it.
Sounds a bit hard to believe. I’m half tempted to sell my old
class ring if I hadn’t lost it while spreading bedding under my
heifer I was showing at the Smyrna Fair.
Do any of you remember the Smyrna Fair? It was what they called
a three county fair as Guernsey, Belmont
counties joined close by. It was held near where Route 800 meets
I think we only took part a couple of years. The first year we
had some fun. A friend, who had a number of cattle to show,
decided he lived close enough to the fairground to lead or drive
his cattle to the fair. He asked me to help. I did. We sure had
fun and no trouble. He even had a bull we could ride every once
in a while. Kids just don’t have any fun nowadays.
Speaking of gold, you can ride around and see gold everywhere.
First it was Goldenrod and now the trees turning. Folks living
in the city ride around this time of year, take pictures and say
“how beautiful.” We ride around and complain about the road.
This is one of my favorite times of the year. The leaves turn,
drop off, trees seem dead and come spring they come to life and
grow leaves that turn the hillsides green. You can’t tell me
this just happens.
Before I forget it, I understand at one time our county had four
Vocational Agriculture Classes along with four FFA Chapters. I
was acquainted with the teacher who taught at
and even received mail addressed to him when I taught at Skyvue.
How do I know they were active? They had six who received the
State Farmer Degree and one receiving the American Farmer
Degree, which is the highest award an FFA member can achieve.
OK you say, this was in the forties and things were much
different. You're right, but some things do change. For example,
we got a few oranges around Christmas time; now we can get them
any time. We have it so good we forget that about 40 percent of
the jobs are related to agriculture in some way. Agriculture
Education isn’t important?
I sometimes wander here and there when I write each week as my
forgetter seems to work overtime any more and I need to get it
out before I forget, unless I jot it down. I used to carry a
note pad with me and jot down a note when I thought of
something; then I kept losing my note pad. I then have to fill
the page with something that is not interesting.
The election coming up is interesting. Actually all elections
are interesting and important. We even get to vote for a council
member in Lewisville this year. This hasn’t happened for
Three issues on the ballot 1,2,3. I expect most of you know how
you are going to vote on these issues so there’s no need for me
to try to influence your vote. You already know how I’m voting.
There is one item to be voted that I think is very important to
the total county. The renewal levy for the extension service and
soil conservation service is important to pass again this year.
These services touch all areas of the county and there is no
additional cost. We’ve been paying this for several years. I
know you know how I feel about our FFA Chapter, the 4-H program
and the youth in the county. I also know I can’t tell you how to
vote, only suggest you give serious thought to the benefits to
the county when you mark your ballot.
You know I attended OSU. In recent years I have become one of
those who have become almost nuts about the
University. Just about everything
I’ve received for Christmas the last few years had OSU on it
somewhere. Am I nuts? I sometimes think so. I even said a few
choice words and turned to another game just like George our
barber did when I was a kid. A real true blue fan? Hardly! It
grows on you. I remember when attending OSU I purchased a season
ticket for $11.50. Know how many games I attended? Only one;
how’s that for a true fan?
I think what brought this to mind was a little thing I read in
the paper a few days ago. As the man says, “There’s more to the
game than just winning.”
It seems that a small high school up north had a manager who was
blind. Even being blind he practiced with the team. During a
game the coach sent him in the game. He fumbled his first
chances. The second time he went in, a couple of teammates
helped him score a touchdown. You probably think the team has
the game well in hand but it’s really great to think of what it
meant to this blind young man and the rest of the team, school
and fans. I’ll bet they went wild when it happened.
The best way to win is to forget to keep score.
You didn’t forget to go to Church Sunday, did you?
Maybe we’ll get an active FFA Chapter back in the county some
Betty J. Larrick, 83,
Cambridge, died Oct. 19, 2009, at Red
Carpet Health Care Center. She was born Sept. 14, 1926 in
daughter of the late William T. Hines and Mable C. Highman
She worked at Kresge and Port Arthur Home Health in Port Arthur, Texas.
She was a member of the
Surviving are two daughters, Ruth (Larry) Young of Cambridge,
Linda (Roger) Bennett of Vero Beach, Fla.; a step-daughter, Ila
Carpenter of Caldwell; a son, James W. (Frances) Kaiser of
Beaumont, Texas; a step-son, John K. (Helen) Larrick of
Cambridge; three sisters, Rose Robinson of Woodsfield, Darlene
Taylor of Woodsfield, Mary (Jerry) Lindemood of Miltonsburg; a
brother, Leland D. (Marge) Hines of Cambridge; 16 grandchildren;
many great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews including
a special niece, Jeanie (Pete) Weyrick of Lewisville.
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her
husband, John R. Larrick in 2002; a son, David Kaiser; a
daughter, Sharon Rominger; a sister, Lola Cleveland; and her
loving pet, Bocephaus.
Friends will be received Oct. 22, from 4 - 8 p.m. at Bundy-Law
Funeral Home, where service will be held Oct. 23, at 1 p.m.,
with Pastor Steve Leathley officiating. Burial will follow in
Memorial contributions may be made to Hospice of Guernsey at P.O. Box 1165, Cambridge,
Online condolences may be sent to www.bundy-lawfuneralhome.com.
MILDRED E. KENNEY
Mildred E. Kenney, 76, Antioch,
died Oct. 16, 2009, at Laurels of Coldwater,
Michigan. She was born Dec. 13,
1932, in Mechanicsburg,
County, a daughter of the
late Howard Hooper and Hilda Dillon Hooper.
She was a member of the Mechanicsburg Church of Christ.
Surviving are a son, Joseph (Brenda) Hooper of Sherwood,
Michigan; six sisters, Lucy Blake of Beech Bottom, W.Va., Elsie
Butler of Woodsfield, Mable Belford of Zanesville, Jean Dale of
Gratiot, Alice St. Clair of Byesville, Connie Eddy of
Zanesville; four grandchildren; and several great-grandchildren.
Friends were received Oct. 19 at Bauer-Turner Funeral Home,
Woodsfield, where funeral services were held Oct. 20, with
Minister Tim Fleeman officiating. Burial was in
Online condolences may be expressed at www.bauerturner.com.
Eleanor Conner, 93, Lewisville,
died Oct. 24, 2009 at St. Joseph Care
Center, Louisville. She was born March 21, 1916, in Monroe
County, a daughter of the late A.
Ross Smith and Katie Ann Oden Smith.
She was an active member of the
Church of the Nazarene and
Surviving are a son, Joe (Kathy) Conner of Mineral City; a
daughter, Patty King of North Canton; five grandchildren; and several
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her
husband, Edward W. Conner Dec. 1985; a daughter, Beverly Roberts
Aug. 2009; two brothers, Ned and Herbert Smith; and four
sisters, Helen Marshall, Mabel Denbow, Marie Frank and Carrie
Friends were received Oct. 27 at Bauer-Turner Funeral Home,
Woodsfield, where funeral services were held Oct. 28, with Rev.
William Graham officiating. Burial in Friendship Cemetery,
Memorial contributions may be made to the Church of the
Nazarene, 223 Maple Ave., Woodsfield,
Condolences may be expressed at www.bauerturner.com.
LOUIS “LOU” TOLZDA *
Louis ‘Lou’ Tolzda, 82, Powhatan Point, died Oct. 23,
2009, in Belmont Community
Hospital, Bellaire. He was
born Feb. 9, 1927 in Glen Dale,
W.Va., a son of the late Alexander and
Josephine Budahawski Tolzda.
He was retired from Conalco of Hannibal, a member of St. John
Vianney Catholic Church, Powhatan Point, a member of the VFW
Post #5565 and American Legion Post #228, both of Powhatan
Point, a WWII Navy veteran and an avid sports fan.
Surviving are his wife of 54 years, Shirley Ondayko Tolzda; two
sons, Lou M. ‘Scooter’ Tolzda of Beallsville, Timothy Neil
(Sandra) Tolzda of Mission Viejo, Calif.; a daughter, Jamie (Gary)
Destifanes of Marietta; six grandchildren, Casey, Zack, Caitlin,
Kristen and Bradley Tolzda and Courtney Destifanes; two
great-grandchildren, Brooke Ann and Ethan.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by three
brothers, Adam, Alex and Joe Tolzda; and three sisters, Kathryn
Vanek, Mary Makris and Sohie Farrar.
Friends were received Oct. 26 at Bauknecht-Altmeyer Funeral
Homes and Crematory, Powhatan Point.
Funeral Liturgy with Mass was held Oct. 27 in St. John Vianney
Catholic Church with Fr. Samuel Saprano as Celebrant. Burial in Powhatan Cemetery.
Vigil service was held Oct. 26 at the funeral home followed by
Powhatan Veterans service. Powhatan Veterans Honor Guard
conducted military graveside services.
Memorial contributions may be made to Powhatan Emergency Squad.
Condolences may be expressed at www.altmeyer.com.
Frances Wheatley, 96, Antioch,
Ill., formerly of Beallsville, died Oct. 17, 2009,
She was born Oct. 2, 1913 in
W.Va., a daughter of the late
William and Anna Taylor Frazier.
She worked as a cook for many years at
Surviving are two daughters, Joann Scott of
W.Va., Barbara (Earl) Quirk of
Antioch, Ill.; nine grandchildren; 21 great-grandchildren and 19
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her
husband, Chester Wheatley in 1985; a son, Charles ‘Chick’
Wheatley in 1980; a great-grandson, Craig Laurent; and a sister,
Friends were received and funeral services were held Oct. 22 at
Harper Funeral Home, Beallsville. Burial followed in
Online condolences may be offered at www.harperfh.net.