Clara Womack named Homecoming Queen at Quitman High

On Friday night Clara Womack was the leader on the basketball court as she helped the Quitman Lady Wolverines take a victory over Georgetown. The next day the vivacious senior was the feature of another kind of court when she was selected the 2020-21 Quitman High School Homecoming Queen. The crowning of Womack was the climax to the gala event that took place Saturday afternoon that also saw Homecoming Maids from each class recognized as well as Miss Merry Christmas, Madilynn Collins. 

Homecoming Queen – Clara Womack:  The member of Missionary Baptist Church is daughter of Chris and Elizabeth Womack of Quitman and the paternal granddaughter of Tsune (Sue-Nay) and the late Bobby Womack of Quitman. Clara’s maternal grandparents are the late Patricia Goeser (Gazer) of Chicago and David and Louise Goeser of Mexico City, Mexico.womack

Clara’s school activities are numerous including being a member of Varsity Basketball, Varsity Track and Varsity Cheerleading squads. In five years of varsity basketball Woamck has earned 1st Team All District honors for the past 3 years, that included an Offensive MVP award and All-State honorable mention in 2019-2020. She is also a four year member of the Varsity Track Team where in 2018-19 she placed 3rd in Pole vault at the State Track Meet. Clara was named the Jackson Parish Hall of Fame’s Female Athlete of the Year in 2020, for Quitman High School.

Clara is also a member of Varsity Cheerleading, High School BETA and FCA. As a Beta member, Clara helps collect, organize and deliver food for needy families as part of the Annual Food Drive. As a member of the cheerleading squad, Clara and her teammates helped put Christmas lights up for the Town of Jonesboro.
Clara has maintained A Honor roll throughout high school. She has been awarded the Scholastic Academic Award every year since her 8th grade year and plans to major in Kinesiology at either LSU or Louisiana Tech before becoming a physical therapist.

Miss Merry Christmas – Madilynn Collins:  “Maddie” is the daughter of JoAnna Chretien (Kratan) and Billy Collins.  Her grandparents are Jimmy and Peggy Donaldson.  She is a member of Ebenezer Baptist Church and is also a member of the youth group there.  At Quitman she has been a member of 4-H, FFA, FCA, and on the yearbook committee.  Maddie is certified in Microsoft; scored a Gold on Work Keys; and is an honor roll student.  She has helped distribute food and water to her community during COVID.  n her free time Maddie loves playing golf, hunting, fishing, and playing with her dog Pepper.  After graduation, she plans to attend Delta Community College and pursue a career as a RADTECH.

Senior Class Maid – Grace Sharplin: The member of Walnut Ridge Baptist Church is the daughter of Thomas Leon Sharplin and Jane Rollinson Sharplin. Her grandparents are Lena Gayle Johns Dillon and the late Marie Thornton Rollinson.

Her school activities include being a member of the High School BETA Club, Student Council, FBLA, 4-H, and Varsity Track and Cross Country Teams. She was named MVP for the QHS Track Team and was awarded the honor of Jackson Parish 12th Grade Student of the Year. Grace serves as the President of the Jackson Parish Junior Leader’s Club and serves on the Louisiana 4-H Food & Fitness State Board. She is the recipient of the Masonic Honesty & Integrity Award and was the 4-H State Champion in Equine Demonstration and Dressage, Jr. Division.

Grace volunteers at the OWL Center, assisting individuals with disabilities in equine therapeutic activities. Her hobbies include photography, archery, running, and yoga. Grace is passionate about all things equestrian.
He plans are to attend Louisiana Tech University and major in Agricultural Business and Equine Science. After, she plans to pursue a career in the equine industry. Her dream is to one day be considered for the U.S. Dressage Olympic Team.

Senior Class Maid – Jayda Narron: Jayda is the daughter of Megan Moffett and Ricky Naron, Jr.  Her maternal grandparents are Chris and Barbara Moffett of Texas. Ricky Naron, Sr. of Weston and Dana Naron of West Monroe are her paternal grandparents.

Naron is a member of Life Church in Ruston.  Her school activities include being a member of the BETA Club, FCA and four year member of Quitman High School Softball Team where she was a part of the 2018 Softball District 1B Champions.  She was also a member of the 2015 National Cheerleading Championship squad and a 2017 All-American Cheerleader.  In 2017 Naron was nominated for the OWL Leadership program and maintains a perfect 4.0 GPA leading her to receiving the Scholastic Academic Award every year since her eighth grade year. 

Jayda’s community service includes helping with the BETA Club Christmas food drive and she spends time volunteering at His Hands in Ministries in Jonesboro during the summer. Her hobbies include spending time with family and friends, sleeping, watching netflix, making tiktoks, and playing softball.  Jayda plans to major in Pre-Dentistry at LSU and then attend LSU Dental School to become a Dentist.

Senior Class Maid – Grace Marie Robinson: Grace is the daughter of Michael Robinson and Christy Peterson and the granddaughter of Glenn and Peggy Robinson and Johnny and Jeanie Davis. She is a member of Central Missionary Baptist Church in Jonesboro.

Robinson is captain of the 2020-21 Quitman Varsity Cheerleading squad that she has been a member of since the sixth grade. In that time she has been a part of the 2015 National Cheerleading Championship squad, 3 time World Championship Runner-Up and 3 time State Champion. She has also been named All-American four times and won several individual awards including the Quitman Cheerleading Powerhouse Award and Scholastic Athletic Award.  

Additional activities  are participating in the Sunshine Festival, Quitman’s Fall Festival and Christmas Caroling at Forest Haven Nursing Home. This year Grace and the Cheerleading Squad helped put lights up in downtown Jonesboro. In her free time, she likes to hang out with friends and watch netflix.
Grace plans to attend Louisiana Tech and get a Degree in Business.

Junior Class Maid – Lainey Herman: Lainey is the daughter of Rachel Ketchens and Joshua Herman and the granddaughter of the late, Larry Dale Ketchens, Pam Ketchens, and Jeff Fullerton. She attends Life Church where she is a member of the Limitless youth group.

Her school activities include being a member of the Beta Club, FCA, and FBLA. Lainey is an AR Millionaire, has been on A Honor Roll and is Greenhand certified in FFA. She participates in the annual Toys for Tots, Teen Challenge, and the school food drive. Lainey enjoys hanging out with her boyfriend and family, listening to music, and playing with her dog. After graduation she plans to go to Louisiana Tech and major in psychology or child development.

Junior Class Maid – Faith Odom: The daughter of Cherie and James Odom, is also the paternal granddaughter of Norma Odom and Gary Odom and maternal granddaughter Denise Simmons and Frank Matthews. Faith is a member of the First Baptist Church of Ruston where she is a volunteer with the Christmas Beta Food Drive, and Helping Hands Ministry as well as being a member of the youth group there.

She is involved with the Beta Club, Student Council, FCA, and the Quitman Varsity Cross Country and Track teams. Faith has been on the Principal’s List, was nominated for OWL Leadership in the 7th grade, and was named the Cross Country’s team Most Valuable Performer. In her spare time, Faith enjoys spending time with friends and family, going to the beach, and watching Netflix. Faith plans to major in Nursing at the University of Louisiana at Monroe and pursue a career as a Nurse Practitioner. 

Sophomore Class Maid – Bethany Leach: Bethany is the daughter of Kyle and Tish Leach. She is the granddaughter of Glen and the late, Patricia Johnson and Robert and the late, Connie Leach. She is a member of Friendship Baptist Church and is also involved with the youth group there. 

Her school activities include playing on the Lady Wolverine’s Varsity Basketball Team, Varsity Track Team, member of the Beta Club, Student Council, and FFA.  Bethany has been named Track MVP, 1st Team All-District Basketball 2 years in a row, placed 3rd in the long jump at the State Track Meet and was a member of the Cross-Country state championship team.

She has participated in Operation Christmas Child, Vacation Bible School, and the school food drive. Bethany loves hanging out with friends and family, hunting, fishing, playing with her dogs and riding the golf cart with her cousins. Bethany plans to attend Louisiana Tech and major in Physical Therapy.

Sophomore Class Maid – Grace Morrison: Grace is the daughter of Sarah Snipe and Justin Snipe the granddaughter of Mona and Grigg Chandler and Theresa Snipe and the late Raymond Snipe. She attends the First Baptist Church of Ruston.

Grace’s school activities include being a member of the Beta club, Gifted and Talented Music, and FFA.   She has been on the Principal’s List and Honor Roll and helped with cheer camps for younger kids.She loves spending time with her family and boyfriend, and taking her dog on walks.  After graduation, she plans to attend college at Louisiana Tech to become an English Teacher.

Freshman Class Maid: A’llohna Gray: “AJ” as she is known, is the daughter of Cyrome Watkins and Shaundra Gray. A’llohna is the granddaughter of Melba Crain Gray and the late Lonnie Buddy Gray and the late Debra Jackson and Alton Watkins. She is a member of Sandhill Baptist Church and the youth group, Alpha Kappa Alpha Precious Pearls.

Her school activities include being a member of the Varsity basketball and Track teams, a member of the Beta club, and the Robotics Club. She has been on the Principal’s List and been an Honor Student since 1st grade.
A’llohna enjoys helping with errands for elderly neighbors and gathering food and clothing donations. Her hobbies are playing basketball, baking sweets, sewing, reading and going to the Watkins Family trail rides.
After graduation, A’llohna plans to attend the university of her choice majoring in Pre-Med or Pre-Law and eventually becoming either a doctor a lawyer.

Freshman Class Maid – Maddie Grace Giddens: The daughter of Tara and Billy Carter of Quitman and John-David and Jennifer Giddens of Ruston is also the granddaughter of Paul and Susan Sisson of Monroe. She attends both Sweetwater Baptist Church in Quitman and Calvary Baptist Church in Ruston where she is involved in their youth groups.

Maddie Grace is a four-year Quitman High School Cheerleader and was part of the Regional and State Championship Competition Team. She is also is a member of Quitman’s Varsity Cross Country and Track Teams where she takes part in Hurdles, Relays, and other running events. Maddie Grace was the Creed Speaker in the District and Area FFA Competition this year. She is a member of the Quitman High School Senior Beta Club and maintains a 4.0 GPA. Outside of school Maddie Grace enjoys watching Grey’s Anatomy on Netflix, doing hair and makeup, and going to the Dairy Queen with friends. Her future plans include attending college close to home – possibly LA Tech or ULM to pursue a degree in the Medical Field. BUT … if that doesn’t work out, Beauty School is always an option.



Jay Mallard Ford in Jonesboro offering $10.00 off on all oil changes

Jay Mallard Ford, located at 601 Hudson Avenue in Jonesboro has joined the ever growing number of businesses in Jackson Parish to advertise in the Jackson Parish Journal. In celebration of the working relationship is offering $10.00 off any oil change throughout the month of February.

To qualify for the discount you must mention that you saw the advertisement in the Jackson Parish Journal. Drive-up service is available on a first come, first serve basis but it is recommended that you call 318-259-9881 or toll free at 888-284-2016 in advance to make reservations.

Quitman native Jeff Robinson unopposed for 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals special election

Quitman native, Jeff Robison has qualified unopposed for the office as Justice of the Second Circuit Court of Appeal that was vacated by Jay McCallum. This seat includes Bienville, Caldwell, Claiborne, Jackson, Lincoln, Union, and Winn parishes.

In other news involving the March 20th special election thirteen contenders are vying to be Louisiana’s newest 5th District U.S. House member. That position is open because Republican U.S. Rep.-elect Luke Letlow died from COVID-19 complications. Letlow’s widow is among those in the race, along with a candidate who is running for the seat from a jail cell. 

Area Prep teams jockey for district titles and playoff positions

It seems like the prep basketball season just began. Actually, for some area schools the season, that actually is the case due to COVID-19 safety protocol that forced many games to be postponed or cancelled. Then there are the schools that were going right along only to have the season come to a screeching halt and those who have been forced to play with only a skeleton of what their team was supposed to be or could have been. 

Never before has so many games been cancelled or postponed on such short notices. Never before has a coach had to make so many adjustments to the schedule, game plans and lineups on the fly. Put yourself in their shoes for a minute. Can you imagine waking up thinking you are playing a certain school and ending up actually leading your team into battle against someone entirely different with no time to strategize? You gotta give them their props. What they have done is simply remarkable given the circumstances that were dealt. They have more than earned their money.  

There is now just two weeks left in the regular season with many crucial and important games yet to be played as teams jockey for position in their respective districts and try to improve their potential seedings for the upcoming playoffs.

See below for the schedule of game to be played from January 27th-February 3rd along with district standings, overall records and state rankings of every area team (shown in bold) in the newly expanded Jackson Parish Journal Sports coverage area as of this past Monday. 


District 2-5AOverall District
#20 – Ouachita9-82-0
#2 -West Monroe10-22-0
#12 – ASH17-51-0
#9 – Ruston13-32-2
#33 -West Ouachita7-71-2
#50 – Pineville3-160-4

January 29 (Friday):Ruston at ASH, West Ouachita at West Monroe
February 2 (Tuesday): Pineville at Ruston, Ouachita at West Ouachita

District 1-2AOverallDistrict
#8 -Jonesboro-Hodge6-40-0
#34 – North Caddo5-140-0
#43 – D’Arbonne Woods3-100-0
#50 – Lakeside0-50-0

January 29 (Friday): Jonesboro-Hodge at D’Arbonne Woods
February 2 (Tuesday): North Caddo at Jonesboro-Hodge (D)

District 3-2AOverallDistrict
#3 – Many9-02-0
#6 – Winnfield9-21-1
#12 – Red River8-71-1
#8 – Lakeview13-70-2

January 29 (Friday): Sterlington at Winnfield (D)

District 1-1AOverallDistrict
#5 – Calvary Baptist18-54-0
#4 – Arcadia8-12-0
#9 – Homer6-73-1
#20 – Ringgold10-112-1
#22 – Lincoln Prep2-110-1
#24 – Plain Dealing1-90-2
#12 – Magnolia SOE0-70-2
#28 – Haynesville0-70-4

January 29 (Friday): Homer at Arcadia, Lincoln Prep at Haynesville
January 26 (Tuesday): Arcadia at Ringgold, Lincoln Prep at Calvary Baptist

District 2-1AOverallDistrict
#7 – Delhi7-77-0
#2 – Tensas6-16-1
#17 – St. Frederick9-65-2
#8 – Oak Grove4-34-3
#18 – Cedar Creek8-82-5
#16 – Sicily Island2-61-4
#22 – Ouachita Christian4-131-4
#23 – Delta Charter2-80-7

January 29 (Friday): Delhi at Cedar Creek, 
February 2 (Tuesday): Cedar Creek at Oak Grove

District 1BOverallDistrict
#4 – Doyline6-01-0
#8 Saline5-61-0
#26 – Castor4-80-1

January 29 (Friday): Doyline at Dodson, Castor at Saline
February 2 (Tuesday): Dodson at Saline, 

District 2BOverallDistrict
#3 – Simsboro14-10-0
#19 – Quitman13-30-0
#22 – Choudrant10-70-0
#24 – Weston9-130-0

January 29 (Friday): Simsboro at Choudrant, Quitman at Weston
February 2 (Tuesday): Simsboro at Quitman (D), Choudrant at Weston 

District 4COverallDistrict
#7 – Calvin4-31-0
#16 -Harrisonburg2-70-0
#15 – Atlanta2-60-0
#18 – Central-Jonesville2-100-0
#17 – Georgetown2-110-1

January 29 (Friday): Calvin at Buckeye
February 1 (Monday): Harrisonburg at Calvin 
February 2, (Tuesday): Central-Jonesville at Calvin


District 2-5AOverallDistrict
#11 – Ruston17-53-1
#9 – Pineville11-42-1
#10 – Ouachita9-52-2
#19 – West Monroe8-42-2
#35 – ASH8-70-0
#20 – West Ouachita7-70-3

January 29 (Friday):Ruston at ASH, West Ouachita at West Monroe
February (Tuesday): Pineville at Ruston, Ouachita at West Ouachita

District 1-2AOverallDistrict
#8 – Jonesboro-Hodge6-50-0
#17 – D’Arbonne Woods5-100-0
#43 – Lakeside1-40-0
#40 – North Caddo1-40-0

January 29 (Friday): Jonesboro-Hodge at D’Arbonne Woods
February 2 (Tuesday):
North Caddo at Jonesboro-Hodge (D)

District 3-2AOverallDistrict
#5 Lakeview13-32-0
#10 – Many11-41-1
#25 – Red River5-81-1
#33 – Winnfield6-40-2

January 29 (Friday): Sterlington at Winnfield (D)

District 1-1AOverallRecord
#9 – Homer6-63-0
#13 – Haynesville6-63-1
#12 – Plain Dealing5-62-1
#23 – Lincoln Prep2-81-1
#22 – Calvary Baptist1-40-2
#26 – Ringgold3-120-2
#21 – Arcadia2-70-2

January 29 (Friday): Homer at Arcadia, Lincoln Prep at Haynesville
January 26 (Tuesday): Arcadia at Ringgold, Lincoln Prep at Calvary Baptist

District 2-1AOverallDistrict
#1 Ouachita Christian20-24-0
#6 – Delhi4-63-0
#5 – Cedar Creek15-24-1
#11 Oak Grove9-42-3
#16 – Delta Charter5-72-5
#11 – St. Frederick2-00-1
#27 – Sicily Island0-60-3
#20 – Tensas0-40-4

January 29 (Friday): Delhi at Cedar Creek, 
February 2 (Tuesday): Cedar Creek at Oak Grove

District 1BOverallDistrict
#25 – Doyline5-51-0
#29 – Saline0-90-0
#30 – Dodson0-100-0
#19 – Castor8-70-1

January 29 (Friday): Doyline at Dodson, Castor at Saline
February 2 (Tuesday): Dodson at Saline 

District 2BOverallDistrict
#8 – Quitman17-20-0
#13 – Choudrant10-80-0
#18 – Weston13-90-0
#22 – Simsboro5-60-0

January 29 (Friday): Simsboro at Choudrant, Quitman at Weston
February 2 (Tuesday): Simsboro at Quitman (D), Choudrant at Weston 

District 4COverallDistrict
#15 – Atlanta2-71-0
#12 – Central-Jonesville6-80-0
#21 – Harrisonburg2-80-0
#10 – Calvin1-80-0
#11 – Georgetown5-50-1

January 29 (Friday): Calvin at Buckeye
February 1 (Monday): Harrisonburg at Calvin 
February 2, (Tuesday): Central-Jonesville at Calvin

LaTrevious Bradford named JHHS Student of the Year

jhhs sdtudent of yearLaTrevious (Tre) Bradford has been named Jonesboro-Hodge High School Student of the Year for 2020-21. Tre is a true example of a scholar student. He is very respectful and conscientious about his grades and is a model student in and out of the classroom. He is always willing to give a helping hand and has a pleasing personality.

“I can’t thank Tre enough for being the student and person that he is,” said JHHS principal Chevonda Leonard. “He is a great representative of the school and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for him.”

Always staying active, Tre works at Brookshire’s Grocery and volunteers during football and basketball season to work in the concession stands. He is also an accomplished soloist and routinely sings the National Anthem at Jonesboro-Hodge High School athletic events.

Library Board meeting rescheduled for Friday, January 29th

The regularly scheduled monthly meeting of the Library Board will now take place on January 29th after the initial meeting set for January 21st was postponed due to a there not being enough members on hand to establish a quorum.  The Jackson Parish Library also reminds that the “Krewe of Life” Blood Donation Drive sponsored by LifeShare Blood Center will take place at the Jonesboro branch from 10:00am to 4:00 pm. 

Upcoming Jonesboro Branch activities

January 28 – Break up with Salt (11:30am – 12:45 pm or 5:30pm – 6:30pm)
The virtual program, sponsored by the LSU AgCenter, provides information on the good and bad that the use of Salt does to your body. Register by calling Cathy Judd at 318-251-5134.

February 1 – “Krewe of Life” Blood Donation Drive (10:00am – 4:00pm)

Upcoming Chatham Branch activities

A take home Fitness Class Program is available for check out by calling 318-249-2980

Children programs

Take Home Art Projects and Surprises are now available. To register call the Jonesboro branch at 318-259-5697 and speak to Terrye Shackleford.

Outreach Services

Monthly personalized delivery of books, audiobooks, magazines and more are available to residents of Jackson Parish, including Nursing Home residents and in-home daycares.

Traditional Services

Provided at both branches are the ability to check out Music CD’s, Graphic Novels, Books, Audio Books, Genealogy Resources, DVD’s, Magazines and E-books for your tablet/smartphone. Fax and copy services are also available. Printing can be done from your Smartphone or Tablets through a free mobile printing app by sending an email along with attachments to: or

Jonesboro Branch information:

Address: 614 South Polk Avenue
Phone: 318-259-5697
Fax: 318-259-3374
Hours of operation: Monday – Friday (8:00am – 5:30pm), Saturday (8:00am – 12:00pm)

Chatham Branch information:

Address: 1500 Pine Street
Phone: 318-249-2980
Fax: 318-249-2981
Hours of operation: Monday-Thursday (8:30am – 6:00pm), Friday & Saturday (8:30am-12:30pm)

“Super” Cooper lifts Quitman over Dodson

Tuesday, January 19 – Already, Cooper Williams had produced a lifetime memory in his final basketball season at Quitman when he made a last second three pointer to lift the Wolverines to a victory. Now he has another.

It was one of those nights that a player dreams about. This time Williams didn’t drain a game winning trey but he made a slew of them in Quitman’s 81-54 victory over Dodson. Seven to be correct and in only ten attempts. Talk about making it rain!!! The performance will go down as his career best for 3-pointers made in a game as will the 25 points he scored. 

“Super” Cooper wasn’t the only one connecting from long range on the night as the Wolverines as a team made 14 of 22 bombs for a mind boggling 63.6% average which easily is a season best. Another season top team performance were the 34 points that the Wolverines scored in the first quarter that gave them a commanding 26 points lead after only eight minutes. 

The victory upped the Wolverines mark to 11-3 and improved their winning streak to six straight. Dodson’s loss snapped a three game winning streak of their own and dropped the Panthers back to .500 on the year with a 6-6 record.

Joshua Smith and L.D. Manning added 11 points each in the blowout followed by nine from Eli Walker on the strength of three trey’s and seven from Blake Carter. John Pabaya added five, Logan Ponder 3 and Ty Simonelli one, to complete the scoring total which was easily the high water mark of the season.  Caleb Barton scored 19 and Beau Canter added 18 to lead Dodson.

Quitman (11-3)3414171681
Dodson (6-6)86192154

Quitman scoring: Williams 25, Smith 11, Manning 11, Walker 9, Carter 7, Pabaya 5, Ponder 3, Simonelli 2
Dodson scoring: Barton 19, Canter 18, Edwards 6, Box 3, Potts 2

Quitman survives late Saline rally 

Thursday, January 21 – Saline won the second half but an eight point deficit at the break, as result of Quitman not allowing but four second quarter points, stood up in the end as the Wolverines sneaked away with the 63-59 victory. The seventh straight win improved Quitman to 12-3 on the year while Saline dropped to 4-6 after losing their second in a row. 

Behind five points from Ryder Blanchard and four from Ethan Roberts the Bobcats took a 12-9 first quarter advantage. With five players scoring in the second, led by Logan Ponder’s four and by holding Saline to just two field goals in the second quarter Quitman took a 21-16 lead into the half.  

Quitman had four players reach double figures led by 15 from Joshua Smith, who made all but two in the second half, that helped keep the fast charging Bobcats at bay. John Pabaya added 14, Blake Carter 13 and Cooper Williams chipped in with 11. Ethan Everett and Logan Ponder scored four each and L.D. Manning added a fourth quarter basket to round out Quitman’s scoring. Ethan Roberts scored 20 to lead Saline followed by 12 from Ryder Blanchard and 11 from Blake Clifton. Titus Jackson added eight and Kenton Lee Crawford four for the Bobcats.

Walker, Simonelli celebrate Homecoming with career scoring nights

Friday, January 22 –  Georgetown played the role as proverbial “Homecoming Fodder” to a tee by making only four baskets and four free throws in the 62-16 blowout that gave Quitman an eight game winning streak and a 13-3 record heading into district play. Georgetown fell to 3-11 on the year. 

Joshua Smith’s 16 points was the highest of eight Quitman players who tallied in the contest as head coach Mike Black emptied his bench early in the second half. Two Wolverines had career scoring nights in Eli Walker with 15 and Ty Simonelli with eight. 

Additional contributors were Blake Carter, Cooper Williams and Ethan Everett with five each, Logan Ponder 4 and both Bailey Keys and Shane Rowe with a basket each. Georgetown, who never managed more than six points in a quarter was led by Tims with five and Riggs with four. 


Tigers win final tune-ups before district play

For the third straight game Jonesboro-Hodge scored in the 40’s. For the third straight game the Tigers came away with a victory. The victories that were orchestrated by Assistant Coach Kris Cash, who stepped in while head coach Allen Tew was dealing with the Coronavirus, improved J-H to 6-4 on the season in the final tune-ups before district 1-2A play begins. The back to back contests began on Thursday with JHHS squeaking by Gibsland-Coleman 49-47 and followed up with a 40-32 victory over Summerfield on Friday. 

Edward “Robbie” Kary scored seven of his team high 12 in the first quarter to pace J-H to an 11-6 lead. Davion McGuire scored his seven points on the night during the second and third to help keep the Tigers ahead and Tydre Malone and Cameron Joe scored five and four respectively in the fourth to pave the way to victory.

Justin Calahan and Tydre Malone scored five each to lead J-H to a 14-4 advantage in the pivotal third quarter that helped erase a nine point, first quarter deficit and lifted the Tigers to the closer than expected 49-47 victory. The win propelled J-H to a 5-4 record  and dropped Gibsland-Coleman to 6-10.

Malone, who finished with a team high 16 points, was also instrumental in keeping Gibsland-Coleman at bay by adding seven more in the final quarter. Calahan had eight, Edward “Robbie” Kary scored seven and both Cameron Joe and Javion Andrews chipped in with six each. Gibsland-Coleman was led by James with 21 and Coleman who had eleven. 

Frantic finish lists Weston past Forest 53-48

Friday, January 22 – The long ride home from Forest, located in West Carroll Parish, ended up a lot more enjoyable than what it looked like it be thanks to the Wolves scoring one more point in the fourth period than they had compiled in the previous three for the best rally of the year. With the win Weston improves to 9-13 on the year while Forest fell to 3-12 after their eight straight defeat and second loss to Weston in seven days.

It started by for Weston and then got worse. The Wolves were behind by six after the first period, nine at the half and 14 entering the fourth period. Ten each by Jace Holt and Davis Tolar, who finished with 16 and 15 points respectively led the furious rally that saw Weston win the quarter by a 27-8 margin. Landon Roberts also came up big with 8 of his 11 points on the night. 

Castor clips short handed Weston 51-45

Tuesday, January 19 – With the game tied at 35 after three quarters of play Castor gave their fans something to cheer about by winning the fourth quarter by a 16-10 margin to take their second victory of the season over their former district foe. The loss dropped the short handed Wolves, who had only six players dressed out, to 8-12 on the year. Castor won for the fourth time in their last five to improve to 4-7 on the year after beginning the season with six straight losses. 

Eli McBride scored seven of his team high 13 points in the first quarter to pace the Wolves to a 14-8 advantage only to see Castor come storming back to take a 28-24 lead into the break. Jace Holt tallied 8 of his 11 points on the night in the third to help bring Weston even. Braden Theriot added nine, Landon Roberts seven and Kaden Shirley five to round out the scoring. Castor was led by Young and Clark who scored 19 and 18 respectively. 

Quitman (13-3)1516171462
Georgetown (3-11)625316

QHS scoring: Smith 16, Walker 15, Simonelli 8, Everett 5, Williams 5, Carter 5, Ponder 4, Rowe 2, Keys 2
GHS scoring: Tims 5, Riggs 4, 

Weston (9-13)78112753
Forest (3-12)131116848

WHS scoring: Holt 16, Tolar 15, Roberts 11, Theriot 6, Albert 2, Henderson 2, McBride 1
FHS scoring: Seamons 20, Hudson 15, Williams 9, Miley 4

JHHS (6-4)117101240
Summerfield (5-15)61051132

JHHS scoring: Kary 12, Malone 9, McGuire 7, Joe 6, Leonard 4, Andrews 2
SHS scoring: Kennedy 21, Wilson 3, Tate 3, Kennedy 3, Jackson 2

Gibsland-Coleman (6-10)151341547
JHHS (5-4)619141049

JHHS scoring: Malone 16, Calahan 8, Kary 7, Joe 6, Andrews 6, Leonard 2, Boston 2, Gray 2
GCHS scoring: James 21, Coleman 11, Adams 6, Simpson 5, Reese 2, Stephens 2

Saline (4-6)124172659
Quitman (12-3)912192363

SHS scoring: Roberts 20, Blanchard 12, Clifton 11, Jackson 8, Crawford 4, Williams 1
QHS scoring: Smith 15, Pabaya 14, Carter 13, Williams 11, Everett 4, Ponder 4, Manning 2

Weston (8-12)1410111045
Castor (4-7)82071651

Weston scoring: McBride 13, Holt 11, Theriot 9, Roberts 7, Shirley 5
Castor scoring: Young 19, Clark 18, Bates 8, Jordan 4, Alsap 2

Saline goes overtime to win 1B opener over Dodson

Friday, January 22 – Blake Clifton scored four, Kenton Lee Crawford made a trey and Titus Jackson added a basket in overtime to lift Saline over Dodson 60-54 in District 1B opener for both teams. The victory snapped a two game skid and improved the Bobcats to 5-6 on the season. Dodson fell to 6-6 after losing their second straight.

Ethan Roberts led Saline in scoring with 20 points that included an outstanding 8 of 9 performance from the free throw line. Titus Jackson finished with 17 with all but two coming in the second half. Blake Clifton was the third Bobcats to finish in double figures with ten on the night. Dodson also had three reach double figures in Caleb Barton, Beau Cantor and Quinton Edwards scoring 19, 14 and 13 respectively.

Ruston evens district 2-5A record

The 65-29 whipping of West Ouachita that past Friday evened Ruston’s district 2-5A record at 2-2 and helped Ruston wipe the bad memory of losing 52-47 loss at home to West Monroe. The major difference in both contests was the second and third periods. In the loss, West Monroe made as many shots (13) as the Bearcats were allowed to take while it was Ruston who took a 29-12 advantage over the Chiefs to coast to victory. 

Ruston is now 13-3 on the year and 2-2 in district play. West Ouachita fell to 7-7 and 1-2 in 2-5A play while West Monroe, ranked 2nd in Class 5A entering the contest by the LHSAA, moved to 2-0 in 2-5A play and with their third straight win that improved the Rebels to 10-2 on the season.

It was backcourt mates Joshua Dean and Markel Jones who led the way for Ruston. Dean made four of eight from the three-point line on his way to 16 points while Jones, who in the earlier stages of the season was the leading scorer, reached double digits with ten after being held to single digits in the last several games. Jonesboro native Rollin Belton added 9, Jackson Pilgreen 8, Lontravious Dimmer 7 and both Braylan McNeal and Johntarious Thomas chipped in five. Kalen Dobbins three pointer and Dillon Wilson’s basket round out the Bearcat scoring. Garrett Dunn led West Ouachita with ten followed by 8 from Joseph Lenard. Chase White and Tanner Wise added four and Harrison May scored three for West Ouachita.

In the West Monroe contest a bright spot for the Bearcats, who was forced to play a second straight without freshman sensation Jamadrion Lillie, was the season best 13 points from Braylan McNeil and one of the better scoring nights of the year for Jackson Pilgreen, who finished with nine. West Monroe was led by 16 from Demareo Taylor and 15 by Tyler Pleasant, who combined to make 14 of 24 shots, including three trey’s.

Saline (5-6)1314159960
Dodson (6-6)15121014354

SHS scoring: Roberts 20, Jackson 17, Clifton 10, Crawford 5, Dison 3, Blanchard 3, Staggs 2
DHS scoring: Barton 19, Cantor 14, Edwards 13, Box 4, Hall 3, Potts 1

Ruston (13-3, 2-2)1613261065
West Ouachita (7-7, 1-2)5571229

RHS scoring: Dean 16, Jones 10, Belton 9, Pilgreen 8, Dimmer 7, Thomas 5, McNeal 5, Dobbins 3, Wilson 2
WOHS scoring: Dunn, Lenard 8, White 4, Wise 4, May 3

Ruston (12-3, 1-2)13971847
West Monroe (10-2, 2-0)98121352

RHS scoring: McNeal 13, Pilgreen 9, Dean 8, Scott 5, Jones 4, Thomas 3, Belton 3, Brewster 2
WMHS scoring: Taylor 16, Pleasant 15, Campbell 8, Jones 5, Dade 4, Cooper 2, Glass 2

Additional Tuesday, January 19th scores for Jackson Parish Journal coverage area schools found Calvin beating Georgetown 67-23 in 4C play, Cedar Creek over Delta Charter 68-58 for their second straight 1-1A victory. Class B Choudrant downed Class 2A D’Arbonne Woods 69-35 and Winnfield lost their district 3-2A opener 73-63 to Red River out of Coushatta.  On Friday, January 22nd Simsboro crushed Franklin Parish 92-64, Union topped Choudrant 83-46 and Winnfield beat Lakeview 67-59.

What makes a great tournament angler?

By: Steve Graf Why do I fish bass tournaments? This is a very good question that has a plethora of answers and for me, it’s not just one specific reason; it’s a little more complicated. Let’s dive into this a little deeper. First of all, it’s the high that I get from competition. All my life I have competed whether it’s been in baseball, football, track or a family game of Skip-Bo. I have played every level from high school to college to professional. The one thing that drives me, is the will to win, the will to be as good as I can be! I was born with this desire or instinct to be the best at whatever it is I’m doing.

I truly believe that this competitive desire is something you’re born with and I don’t think it’s something that can necessarily be taught. But with this instinct or desire, it can also be a curse. When you strive to be the best and win, you put your heart and soul into it and dedicate yourself to the process with commitment. You’ll do whatever it takes to be or beat the best. You will also be disappointed from time to time with poor finishes. Tournament bass fishing is a sport that you will fail more than you will win.

What drives a bass angler? It’s the rush that any angler gets when he or she pulls their catch out of the live well and places them in their weigh-bag. It’s walking up to the stage with a really good sack of fish and placing them on the scales with all your peers watching as the scales tip in your favor and your weight is announced. It’s standing on a stage and being interviewed by the tournament director as to how you caught that good bag of fish. It’s other anglers coming up and congratulating you on a job well done. There’s a since of pride knowing that you figured out or found a group of fish that no one else did. It’s the feeling you get when they call your name to walk up on stage and receive your check.

Anglers are always looking for an edge, an advantage over their competition. Sometimes it might be a secret bait or maybe a spot they found pre-fishing. It might even be something a little different in their presentation, for example, instead of dipping the tail of their favorite worm in chartreuse dipping dye like everyone else is doing, they use red or blue or maybe even black. No one over thinks and over analyzes what they are doing more than bass anglers! We can over think or over complicate the process of catching a fish that has a brain the size of your fingernail.

But if you look at every top angler or anyone who has had success in the bass fishing world, there’s one common thread or attribute each possess. It’s something you can’t buy off the shelf at your local tackle shop and it’s not a special bait or technique either. It’s not what brand or how fast their boat is. It not the brand of rod and reel their using. You can sum it up in one word…. confidence! The best bass fishermen on the planet all have this one attribute no matter who they’re competing against. A confident angler thinks he’s the best to ever hold a rod. Even Kevin Van Dam was asked one time “What makes you the greatest angler of all time?” His response was….”Confidence.” He truly believes in himself and that every decision he makes on the water, is the right decision.

Every professional angler I have ever asked this question has said that there’s no better tool in your tackle box than confidence. It’s not about what bait your throwing but more about the way you work it. There’s a big difference with an angler who fishes a certain bait with confidence than a bait he has no confidence in at all. If there’s one piece of advice I tell young anglers today, figure out what bait or technique you have the most confidence in and when the bite gets tough, go to what you believe in.

For me, it’s a Texas rigged straight tail worm (Zoom Trickworm or V&M Pork Pin) with a 3/16 tungsten weight with a 2/0 Gamakatsu hook. Anytime I’m struggling in practice or an event, I’ll pick up a straight tail worm and go to work. My confidence level when I have this bait in my hand is very high. I feel no matter what, I will catch fish with this rig. I can’t count how many times that this technique has filled my live well and got me a check at the end of the event. Why, because I believe in it and fish it with confidence! It’s my go to bait or technique when things get tough for me.

For other anglers, it might be a spinnerbait or maybe a jig. This is something that can take years to figure out, but once you do, you’ll begin to think like a pro and hopefully put money in your pocket. Till next time, don’t forget to set the hook! For more great angling tips, tune in every Monday at 12:00 noon to Tackle Talk Live on Facebook or catch us on our You Tube channel.

Lady Wolverines equal a national record

Tuesday, January 19th – The 60-26 thrashing that Quitman gave Dodson was not surprising in any way. When a team that has one of the best scoring average in the state and is a top ten team in Class B, that boasts many of the best teams in the state regardless of classification, plays a team that hasn’t won a game in ten attempts this year plays, this is the kind of outcome that is expected.

What it does prove though is that something special can happen at any time. The contest earned a unique significance when Quitman became one of the many teams that equaled a national record that can never be broken by not allowing a point scored in the first quarter. The victory improved the Lady Wolverines to 15-2, while Dodson fell to 0-10 on the year.

This one was over early as the Lady Wolverines made 6 trey’s in the first half and went into the break with a 33-7 advantage. Final stats prove the dominance as Quitman took 67 shots in the contest compared to allowing just 44 from Dodson and held the Lady Panthers to just a 22.7% field goal percentage.

Three of the trey’s accounted for Clara Womack’s 9 points. Two more were from Bethany Leach, who finished with a team high 14 points.  Also contributing was Maddie Vail with 8, Averie Williams and Cali Deal six each and Brayli Stewart, who scored five, including a trey. Maddie Kay Brymer and Ansley Folks scored four and both A.J. Gray and Aryana Stuckey chipped in with a basket each. Dodson was led by Weary’s 9 points and 8 from Beaubouef.

Quitman (15-2)1419131460
Dodson (0-10)0761326

QHS scoring: Leach 14, Womack 9, Vail 8, Deal 6, Williams 6, Stewart 5, Folks 4, Brymer 4, Stuckey 2, Gray 2
DHS scoring: Weary 9, Beaubouef 8, Womack 3, Graham 3, Gresham 2

Quitman sets new season best in victory over Saline

Thursday, January 20 – Quitman scored almost as many points in the first quarter as Saline did all game in the 48-19 rout that saw the Lady Wolverines set a new season best for points allowed. The previous best was 25 given up to Epps the first game of the year. 

The starters got only limited minutes in the second half after Bethany Leach and Clara Womack scored 22 of their combined 31 total points in the two quarters to pace Quitman to a commanding 33-8 advantage at the break. Georgia Robinson and Alana Gray led Saline, who fell to 0-9 on the season, with seven each. 


Homecoming celebrated with easy win over Georgetown

Friday – January 22: It was a special night that those who were honored at the Homecoming celebration at Quitman High will never forget. It also proved that when you combine beauty with good basketball it makes for a great time had by all.

After the beautiful young ladies that made up the Homecoming Court were recognized the Lady Wolverines took to the court and beautifully worked their game plan for an easy 57-31 victory over Georgetown. The ninth straight win that ran the record to 17-2 continued one of best starts to a season in school history and kept the Lady Wolverines unbeaten in 2021. Georgetown lost their third straight and fell to 5-5 on the year.

Once again, Quitman bombed their opponent away early by dropping  six trey’s on the District 4C foe to race away with a 33-11 halftime advantage. Once again it was the Lady Wolverines “terrific trio” that led the way in Clara Womack with three trey’s and 16 of her 17 total points in the first half, Brayli Stewart who scored 13, including eight in the 3rd quarter and Bethany Leach whose pair of first half trey’s helped her to ten on the night.


Quitman (16-2)16 177848
Saline (0-9)628319

QHS scoring: Leach 16, Womack 15, Vail 5, Deal 4, Stewart 3, Grillette 2, Carter 2, Jones 1
SHS scoring: Robinson 7, Alana Gray 7, Macyanski 5

Quitman (17-2)131820657
Georgetown (5-5)4713731

QHS scoring: Womack 17, Stewart 13, Leach 10, Deal 5, Brymer 4, Folks 2, Williams 2, Gray 2, Vail 1
GHS scoring: Griffith 12, Nugent 6, Cockerham 6, Maxwell 5, Hoadley 2

Peterson fuels fourth quarter rally for Weston 

Friday, January 22 – After three quarters Briley Peterson had just two points and Weston trailed by four. In the fourth Peterson exploded for nine points and Weston won the game 56-51. One could say there was a correlation there. It could also be said that five each by team leading scorers Emma Kate McBride and Lakkeria Austin played a big role as well. 

Actually McBride was a beast all game on the strength of four trey’s as she paced the Lady Wolves in scoring in each of the first three quarters with six, six and seven points on her way to a team high 23. Austin added 14, Lexi Barmore and Mallory Tolar chipped in with 3 each and Mary Catherine Hay added two second half free throws to round out the scoring.  The victory was the fifth in the last six games for the Lady Wolves who improved to 13-9 on the year. Forest dropped to 7-7 on the season with their fourth straight loss and second in seven days to Weston.

Weston (13-9)1112112256
Forest (7-7)1212141351

WHS scoring: McBride 23, Austin 14, Peterson 11, Tolar 3, Barmore 3, Hay 2
FHS scoring: Crater 23, Mulkey 10, Peacock 8, Ross 5, Grimes 3, Sumrall 2

Weston slips past Ringgold 51-44

Thursday, January 21 – Mary Catherine Hay scored 14, Emma Kate McBride 13 and Briley Peterson added ten as Weston made a 41-26 third quarter lead stand up for the seven point  victory over Class 1A Ringgold. The victory was the third in four games for the Lady Wolves in one of their final tune-ups before district 2B play begins. Ringgold lost for the seventh straight time to fall to 3-12 on the year. 

After Emma Kate McBride scored eight of her 13 points in the first the Lady Wolves went into the half with a 23-17 advantage after Mary Catherine Hay scored six of her 14 points and Weston made eight of ten free throws. Six of Briley Peterson’s ten points helped Weston outscore Ringgold 18-10 in the third that put the game out of reach. 

Weston (12-9)1013181051
Ringgold (3-12)8991844

WHS scoring: Hay 14, McBride 13, Peterson 10, Austin 6, Tolar 4, Ledford 3, Trosclair 1
RHS scoring: Jones 19, Cox 15, Brown 7, Adams 3

Missed free throws costly for Weston against Castor

Tuesday, January 19th – Sometimes free throws aren’t so free. They can actually be down right costly. One has to look no further for the culprit in the Lady Wolves 60-57 loss to Castor this past Tuesday week (January 19th) than their poor performance at the free throw line where Weston made only 25% of their 30 charity shots in the contest including a paltry 4 of 19 in the second half.

The misfires ended Weston’s season best, three game winning streak and dropped their record to 10-9 on the year. Castor has now beaten the Lady Wolves twice this season and moved above .500 for the first time all season with a 7-6 record, after dropping their first four to open the season.

Briley Peterson’s 17 points led a balanced Weston attack that saw six players score seven points or better. Lakerria Austin added 10, Mary Catherine Hay made nine and Emma Kate McBride, Mallory Tolar and Lexi Barmore all scored seven. Smith led Castor with a game high 18 followed by Caldwell with twelve.

Weston (11-9)111918957
Castor (7-6)2112131460

Weston scoring: Peterson 17, Austin 10, Hay 9, Tolar 7, McBride 7, Barmore 7
Castor scoring: Smith 18, Caldwell 12, Rogers 9, Collinsworth 8, Vise 8, Guice 5

Lady Tigers snap losing streak with 56-40 win over Summerfield

Friday, January 22 – Jonesboro-Hodge got back on track just in time for district 1-2A play by snapping their season long four game losing streak with their first win of 2021. With the victory JHHS improved to 7-5 on the year while Summerfield fell to 7-14. 

Xabrianna Jackson totaled 28 points to lead JHHS with Chamya Waters adding 16 as the Lady Tigers ended a season long four game slide in the final tune up before district 1-2A play begins. Zymea Hoggro scored 6 while Yahzmynne Andrews, Sydney Malone and Jessica Bradford added two points each.

Thursday, January 20 – Gibsland-Coleman (12-2) protected their #2 ranking in Class C by defeating JHHS 62-43 and remained perfect for 2021 with their sixth straight win. The loss continued a season worst four game slide that has come against some of the top teams in North Louisiana and dropped the Lady Tigers to 6-5 on the year. 

After three quarters the Lady Tigers were trailing by just three points but G-C ran away with the victory by outscoring J-H 24-8 in the final frame. Xabrianna Jackson led the Lady Tigers scoring parade with 17 followed by 11 from Zymea Hoggro and 10 from Chamya Waters. Yahzmynne Andrews added three and Jessica Bradford two to round out the J-H scoring. Williams had 30 for Gibsland-Coleman.

In other area girls action on Tuesday, January 19th: Cedar Creek moved to 4-1 in district 1-1A play with a 72-37 downing of Delta Charter, Choudrant fell to D’Arbonne Woods 51-45, Ruston beat West Monroe 44-33 and Winnfield fell to Red River 59-49 in district 3-2A play. West Ouachita also lost to West Monroe on Monday, January 18th. Thursday, January 21 – Cedar Creek won their second in three days by beating Simsboro 38-24. Friday, January 22nd  – Ruston beat West Ouachita 45-43, Lakeview beat Winnfield 46-37 and Union upended Choudrant 68-48.  

Jonesboro-Hodge (7-5)164181856
Summerfield (7-14)77121440

JHHS scoring: Jackson 28, Waters 16, Hoggro 6, Andrews 2, Malone 2, Bradford 2
SHS scoring: Tate 23, Combs 9, Martin 6, McDaniels 2

Jonesboro-Hodge (6-5)101015843
Gibsland-Coleman (12-2)1210162462

JHHS scoring: Jackson 17, Hoggro 11, Waters 10, Andrews 3, Bradford 2
GCHS scoring: Williams 30, Jackson 12, Stevens 7, Hardy 6, Sampson 6, Durham 2, Nunnally 2, Hauley 2

Cream of the crop rising to the top of JPRD basketball leagues


While recognizing one team over another is not the goal established for the Jackson Parish Recreation Department Basketball leagues the “cream of the crop” in each of the seven leagues are starting to make themselves known. 

Still undefeated heading into week four are the Bulls (5-6 year old), Storm (9-10 girls), Rockets (9-10 boys), Liberty and Dream (11-12 girls), Lakers (11-12 boys) and the Timberwolves (13-14 boys) with several others just one game back. 

Saturday, January 30th games at Jonesboro-Hodge Middle School

9:00 am Pelicans vs Bulls (5-6 boys/girls)
10:00am Lakers vs Warriors (5-6 boys/girls)
11:00am Blazers vs Jazz (7-8 boys/girls)
12:00pm Storm vs Mystic (9-10 girls)
1:00pm Hawks vs Magic (7-8 boys/girls)
2:00pm Storm vs Sparks ( 9-10 girls)

Saturday, January 30th games at Jonesboro-Hodge High School

9:00am Liberty vs Dream (11-12 girls)
10:00am Grizzlies vs Raptors (9-10 boys)
11:00am Dream vs Wings (11-12 girls)
12:00pm Kings vs Rockets (9-10 boys)
1:00pm Spurs vs Bulls (11-12 boys)
2:00pm Pelicans vs Celtics (13-14 boys)
3:00pm Lakers vs Warriors (11-12 boys)
4:00pm Pelicans vs Timberwolves (13-14 boys)

Results of games played on Saturday, January 23rd

Age 5-6 league: (Boys and Girls)

Pelicans 17 Lakers 11
Scoring: (Pelicans) Adeline Anderson 8, Ainsley Bougues 3, Jacob Toms 2, Grant Williams 1, Jaylee Hough 1, Braxton Lawson 1 (Lakers) Maddox Naron 6, Bentley Hall 2, Braxten Theriot 1, Isaac Sessions 1, Brantley Tucker 1

Bulls 26 Warriors 8
Scoring: (Bulls) Jagger Ingram 7, Koplen Taylor 4, Carter Greer 4, Maddox Graham 3, Clay Burton 3, Kutter Blalock 3, Savannah Porter 2 (Warriors) Eli Stringer 6, Hudson St. Clair 1, Jasper Owen 1

Age 7-8 league: (Boys and Girls)

Blazers 37 Magic 21
Scoring: (Blazers) Samone Mallard 19, Thatcher Savage 14, Caleb Robinson 4, Cooper Roton 1 (Magic) Antley Wright 9, Hannah Aldy 6, Kash Gandy 4, Karrigan Gandy 2

Jazz 23 Hawks 17
Scoring: (Jazz) Caiden Jackson 8, Jaxen Culpepper 6, Emerson James 5, Kynleigh Leach 2, Ella Simonelli 2 (Hawks) Bentley Ponder 7, Jase Reed 6, Lizzie Sullivan 1, Jace Tinsley 1, Brooklyn Keiffer 1,  

Age 9-10 (Girls)

Mystics 39 Sparks 3
Scoring: (Mystics) Kinsey Ponder 12, Rachel Bandy 6, Syla Malone 6, Allie Fenn 4, Sophia Kliebert 4, Maggie Wall 4, Raeleigh Medaries 2, Klea Blalock 1 (Sparks) Bailey Tinsley 1, Annalise Bougues 1, Demie McCurdy 1

Age 9-10 (Boys)

Grizzlies 23 Kings 16 
Scoring: (Grizzlies) Joseph Delaney 10, Ryder Gray 9, Jayden Burns 2, Asher Burns 2 (Kings) Hayden Seymore 6, Brody Tucker 3, Noah Spillman 2, Jenson Waggoner 2, Luke Sims 2, Spencer Strickland 1 

Age 11-12 (Girls)

Liberty 29 Wings 6
Scoring: (Liberty) Anna Claire Leach 10, Jada Conner 10, Ralei Bradford 4, Avery Watson 2, Carly Jo Griffen 2, Makayla Hodnett 1 (Wings) Taylor Borland 3, Carlynn Waters 2, Allison Morgan 1

Age 11-12 (Boys)

Lakers 31 Bulls 24
Scoring: (Lakers) Asher Schultz 16, D.J. Palmer 6, Caden Jackson 5, Elijah Jackson 4 (Bulls) Brayden Martin 12, Shane Reed 12

Age 13-14 (Boys)

Timberwolves 23 Celtics 22
Scoring: (Timberwolves) Noah Leach 8, Jacob Gill 7, Tyler Pardue 4, Walker Medaries 2, Shelby Perot 2 (Celtics) Brayden Smith 9, Skyler Strickland 6, Jude Otwell 5, S. Reed 2


The Prince of Peace

Prince of Peace

On April 28, 1956, Reverend Donald P. Schneider, a graduate of Northwestern Lutheran Seminary in Minneapolis, Minnesota, made it his mission to create a new church in North Hollywood, California. Building a church from scratch, even with the support of the United Lutheran Church, was an enormous task. Before constructing a dedicated building for worship, Schneider had to build a congregation. Before building a congregation, Schneider needed a building in which a congregation could gather.

Reverend Schneider’s predicament was reminiscent of the old catch 22 in which you cannot get a credit card unless you have credit, but you need a credit card to establish credit. Schneider began searching for a place for his potential parishioners to meet. He needed a local space which was large enough for his congregation to grow. After a thorough search, Schneider located a company who had a spacious building and agreed to allow him to hold church services.

On September 9, a handful of curiosity-seekers gathered at the temporary church for the first time. They held Sunday school at 9:30 a.m., followed by a 10:45 a.m. worship service. At the worship service, Schneider explained his plans for the new church. The small congregation was enthusiastic. On the following Sunday, Schneider noticed that there were a few more people in the congregation. On each subsequent Sunday, the number of people in the congregation grew.

By December, the congregation had grown from just a handful of parishioners to over seventy. At the Sunday service held on December 2, the congregation took one more step towards becoming official. Seventy-one people signed the organizational charter as charter members of the Prince of Peace Lutheran Church. With help from the United Lutheran Church, the congregation had purchased four acres of land for the new church site. At the time the congregation signed the organizational charter, construction workers had already begun leveling the ground in preparation for the church’s building.

In January of 1957, leveling and grading of the building site was completed. The congregation formed several new church groups including an adult choir, Luther League for children between the ages of twelve and seventeen, adult instruction classes, and a committee to oversee the church building’s design, construction, and administration. By September, on the church’s first anniversary, the congregation numbered more than 200 members.

At a ceremony held on February 9, the congregation officially broke ground on the chapel. Construction on the building was slow because the congregation paid construction costs upfront when funds were available. When funds ran out, construction stopped. To speed up construction, the congregation held a banquet and started a fund drive to help pay for constructions costs. Most people in attendance donated generously. For over a year, construction started and stopped in a seemingly endless cycle.

In May of 1958, the Prince of Peace congregation had another unfortunate setback. Workers of the company where the congregation held their temporary worship services went on strike. The congregation searched unsuccessfully for another suitable place to hold their worship services while the strike was being negotiated. Construction on the church building had begun, but it was little more than a partially framed building. The congregation agreed to postpone Sunday school classes until the strike was over. They were determined not to postpone the worship services, however, and decided to gather in the open-air construction site.

The Mother’s Day service was plagued with a light rain and large gusts of wind. Although the building site had no roof and the congregation’s clothing soaked up the rain, they were undeterred. They simply ignored the weather. Reverend Schneider fumbled only momentarily when a large gust of wind blew his prepared sermon away. Taking the situation in stride, the congregation chuckled. With a warm and gentle smile, Reverend Schneider continued his sermon from memory. The reverend expected the strike and the open-air services to lower attendance. To his surprise, attendance increased. Donations to the building fund drive increased as well. Within weeks, the strike ended and the congregation resumed having Sunday school and worship services inside in their previous venue. It seemed as though the congregation had passed some sort of divine test.

At 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, August 31, 1958, the congregation held a dedication service for the newly completed building. On the following Sunday morning, September 7, the congregation held its first regularly scheduled Sunday service in the new chapel. Reverend Schneider had succeeded in his mission of building a church from scratch.

For almost two years, Reverend Schneider and the congregation of the Prince of Peace Lutheran Church had held their worship and Sunday school services in the most unsuspecting of places. At their last worship service in the temporary venue, Reverend Schneider presented a plaque which bore an inscription of their gratitude to the company for allowing them a place to hold their worship services.

In his sermon, Reverend Schneider said, “This morning we close a chapter on the history of our mission congregation. We have worshiped here and, through this experience, we have formed many new friends, and God has given to us many new joys and blessings… We have worshiped in a strange place. We have seen strange events. Let us be a strange people of whom others beholding us say ‘See how they love one another!’”

The “strange place” in which the congregation worshiped was the Anheuser-Busch Corporation’s Budweiser Beer tap room and cafeteria.

Arrest Reports

January 18-25, 2021

1. Keith T Cordwell (West Monroe, LA) – DWI, Headlight infraction
2. Dominique D Walker (Winnfield, LA) – Possession of Schedule II controlled substance
3. Eric Parker (Quitman, LA) – Bench Warrant on expired MVI charge
4. Malcom A Cagnalatti (Tallulah, LA) – Bench warrant on theft charges (x3)
5. Kyona D Reynolds (Calhoun, LA) – Winn Parish Bench Warrant on video voyeurism charge
6. Raymond Maynugh (Jonesboro, LA) – Domestic Abuse Battery
7. James A McElween (Slidell, LA) – Theft of goods
8. Mark Maxwell Jr. (Ruston, LA) – Theft of goods (x3)

Public Notices

Notice of Public Hearing

A Public Hearing will be held February 9th, 2021 at 5:45 p.m. to discuss the purposed Ordinance #2021-001 Surplus Property. An ordinance amending the Jonesboro code of Ordinances to create section 33 entitled “Surplus Property”, Enacting sections 33:1-33:2 authoring the sale of the undivided interest of the Town of Jonesboro in a tract of immovable property.

Town of Jonesboro Board of Alderman Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Call of order: The meeting was called to order by Mayor Leslie Thompson at 6:00 P.M.
Roll Call: Johnson-Present, Flowers-Present, Ginn-Absent, Siadek-Present, and Stringer-Present.

Invocation was conducted by Flowers. Pledge of Allegiance was conducted by Siadek.

Public Comments: Mrs. Wilda Smith is looking forward to 2021 and eager for the Town of Jonesboro and the Chamber of Commerce to work closely together this coming year.

Mayor’s Update: Mayor Thompson updated the council on the project he and public works have been working closely on as relating to finding the 600+ residents that are not in the water billing system. He also expressed his excitement for the New Year. He is looking forward to 2021.

Approval of December Bills: Johnson made a motion to approve December bills, seconded by Siadek. Motion carried.

Approval of December Financials: A motion by Siadek was made to approve December financials, seconded by Flowers. Motion carried.

Approval of December minutes: Flowers made a motion to approve the minutes for December seconded by Siadek. Motion carried.

Mobile Home: Stringer made a motion to allow placement of a mobile home at 415 Northeast St. Siadek seconded. Flowers recused himself. Motion carried.

Ordinance 2021-001 Surplus Property: Stringer made a motion to introduce Ordinance 2021-001 Surplus Property and set a public hearing for February 9th, 2021 at 5:45 P.M.

Police-New Hire: Chief Harris made a recommendation to rehire Mr. Warren Johnson back at the same rate of pay ($14.00) that he was making when he left the PD. Siadek made a motion to rehire Warren Johnson, seconded by Stringer. Motion carried.
Faylon Napper: Chief Harris notified the council of Mr. Napper’s position change. He was moved for FULL TIME to RESERVE due to being deployed.

Department head reports: Police Chief Harris and Fire Chief Brown briefly went over the reports that were submitted to the council. Public Works Director Mr. Wortham was not on the call, but did submit a report.

Approval of Department head reports: Johnson made a motion to approve the reports. Flowers seconded. Motion carried.
Council Comments: Comments were expressed.
Mayor Comments: Comments were expressed.
Adjournment: Flowers made a motion to adjourn the meeting, seconded by Siadek. Motion carried.

Jackson Parish Police Jury Finance Committee meeting minutes
January 21, 2021

The Finance Committee met Thursday, January 21, 2021 at 12:00 PM in the Nathaniel Zeno Jr. Meeting
Room of the Jackson Parish Police Jury Administrative Building, 160 Industrial Drive, Jonesboro,
Louisiana. Members present: Ms. Amy Magee and Mr. John McCarty. Absent: Ms. Tarneshala Cowans.
With the Chairman not present, the meeting was called to order by Ms. Magee. Mr. McCarty gave the
invocation and Ms. Magee led in the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.

There were no public comments.

Ms. Magee noted that Ms. Cowans and the Secretary-Treasurer were both listening via teleconference
due to mandated COVID-19 quarantines.

The Committee discussed the deadline for the 2020-21 LGAP application. Ms. Magee stated that only
the Village of North Hodge had requested a letter of support from the Police Jury and that the maximum
for municipalities was $25,000, leaving $33,800 available. They discussed options for what the Police
Jury could apply for and other grant opportunities available. Ms. Magee stated that if more
municipalities applied, the Jury would not want to compete against them, but that the Police Jury should
have an application prepared if no one else requested anything. Ms. Magee stated that a vehicle to be
used by Administration, Maintenance, OEP, Administrative Clerks, and travel would benefit multiple
departments. Ms. Cowans agreed. Motion Mr. McCarty, seconded Ms. Magee to recommend the Jury use the 2020-21 LGAP application to apply for the purchase of an SUV. Motion carried.

Ms. Magee stated that the 2020 Finance Committee had requested the President to talk to the Sheriff’s
Office about the cost of prisoner housing. She stated that the Secretary-Treasurer had also been
contacted by the correctional center asking if the Police Jury is supposed to receive the invoices for the
towns. Ms. Magee stated that in her research she found that the Police Jury has been paying for all of
the municipal prisoners, even though it is not mandated. The Committee discussed the cost per day for
different types of prisoners and the tickets and sentences imposed by the towns. Motion Mr. McCarty, seconded Ms. Magee to recommend the Jury notify the Sheriff’s Office that the Police Jury will only pay for their mandated prisoners. Motion carried.

Motion Mr. McCarty, seconded Ms. Magee to set the next Finance Committee Meeting for Tuesday,
February 16th at 12:00 PM at the Administrative Building. Motion carried.

Motion Ms. Magee, seconded Mr. McCarty to adjourn. Motion carried

Death Notices

Sharon Delores (Culpepper Milks
June 15, 1946 – January 25, 2021

Mrs. Sharon Delores (Culpepper) Milks, age 74, was escorted through the portals of Heaven and into the presence of her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, on January 25, 2021. Mrs. Milks was a kind and gentle person who loved the Lord, her family and her friends. She enjoyed spending time with her brother and sisters and all of her nieces and nephews.

Funeral services were held on January 26th at the Hodge United Pentecostal Church with Bro. Jeff Stroud officiating. Interment followed at the Gayla Traina Cemetery under the direction of Southern-Edmonds Funeral Home.

Those left to cherish her memory are siblings, Jimmy Culpepper, Louise Roebuck and Carmen Harper and a host of nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband Al Milks; parents, Crawford W. & Hazel Golden (Guthrie) Culpepper; sister-in-law, Carolyn Culpepper; brothers-in-law, LeRoy Roebuck and Charles Harper.

Donald Choate Jr.
August 31, 1947 – January 18, 2021

Mr. Donald Choate Jr. of Castor, age 73, crossed through Heaven’s gate on Monday, January 18, 2021 after a period of declining health. Mr. Donald was a member of Briarwood Baptist Church. He taught school for over twenty years and retired from Saline High School. He loved Saline High School sports and kept track of the stats for the basketball team. He was a proud grandfather and great grandfather that enjoyed time visiting with his grandchildren and great grandchildren as often as he could.

Those left to cherish his memory are his children, Donald “Donnie” Ray Choate III of Saline, Marsha Cheatwood (Matt) of Saline; grandchildren, Austin Coats (Tara), Madison Sanford (Ty), Maci Cheatwood, Alexis Coats; great grandchildren, Westlynn Sanford, Wrenlee Sanford, Jameson Coats, Jackson Coats; brothers, Wayne Choate & Cheryl, Dennis Choate & Jerrie; sister, Jackie Reed & Archie. He was preceded in death by his daughter, Melinda Faye Coats; parents, Donald Ray, Sr. and Mary (Stevenson) Choate; sister, Mary Choate Perkins.

Friends may view on Saturday, January 23, 2021 at Briarwood Baptist Church from 12:30pm until time of services. Funeral services were held on January 23, 2021 at Briarwood Baptist Church with Reverend Chase Burns officiating. Burial followed in the Strange Cemetery under the direction of Southern-Edmonds Funeral Home. Serving the family as pallbearers were Donnie Choate, Matt Cheatwood, Austin Coats, Mickey Hawkins, Archie Reed, Wayne Choate, Dennis Choate, Roger Blewer.

Angela “Angie” Costin
September 10, 1967 – January 18, 2021

Angela Renea “Angie” Costin, age 53, was escorted into heaven on Monday, January 18, 2020. Angie was a life-long resident of the Eros area and was a graduate of Chatham High School. She loved to hunt and and to go to NASCAR races at Talladega with her aunt. She had a big heart and was always willing to help anyone in need. Her family was everything to her and she loved spending time with them.

Funeral services were held at the Eros Pentecostal church on January 23, 2021 church with Reverend Ernest Twiner officiating. Interment followed in the Eros Cemetery under the direction of Southern-Edmonds Funeral Home of Jonesboro. Serving the family as pallbearers were Cody Tipton, Will Atkins, Dean, Mark London, Michael Rowlan, Joe Spillers.

Those left to cherish Angie’s memory are her children, Nicole Atkins & Jerred, Perry Ray Hightower & Stacey; grandchildren, Will Atkins, Kadi Atkins, Parker Hightower, Paisley Hightower; brother, Brian Costin & Amy; special nieces, Nicolette Chavers, Brianna Costin; a host of cousins, other relatives and friends. She was preceded in death by her parents, Calvin Lee & Jerry Ruth (Alford) Costin.

James Morgan “Jimmie” Pepper Jr.
January 2, 1948 – January 17, 2021

Jimmy Pepper, age 73 of Weston, died January 17, 2021 following a brief illness. Jimmy was a life-long resident of the Weston community and was a graduate of Weston High School. He was retired from Stone Container and loved to spend time visiting with friends and tinkering in his shop and around his place. He loved all of his family without reserve and was a loving and kind man. He took his wife’s children and raised them with all of the love and care that he had for his daughter. BJ became his son and he cared for all of his children with much love and care. Mr. Pepper loved to hunt and fish and in all of his tinkering he could fix and build almost anything. He was a prolific talker and could go on for hours with friends and family sharing stories and wonderful memories. He will be missed.

Those left to cherish his memory are his wife, Judy (Buchan) Pepper; children, Amanda Tilley & Justin, BJ Wright & Dusti; step children, Carla Parker, Patty Foust & Kendall; grandchildren, Layton Garrett, Addisyn Garrett, Londyn Tilley, Jathan Wright, Brayden Wright, Amber Carpenter, Michael Parker, Sophia Spence; great-grandchildren, Sage Eubanks, Sadie Eubanks, Jaxson Carpenter; sisters, Donna Spruell, Laverne Thomas, Mary McDole, Theresa Layfield, Linda Aldy; a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. Mr. Pepper was preceded in death by his father, James Morgan Pepper, Sr and mother, Ruby May (Whitman) Pepper. A memorial service will be held at a later date to be set by the family.




Jonesboro Board of Aldermen set date for public hearing on surplus property

At the regularly scheduled January 12th meeting that was held via tele-conference the Jonesboro Board of Aldermen introduced an Ordinance in regard to the sale of Surplus Property and set a date of February 9th, 2021 for a Public Hearing to be held for discussion on the matter. 
The ordinance would amend the Jonesboro Code of Ordinances to create a section entitled “Surplus Property” and would deal specifically with the authorization to sale of the undivided interest of the Town of Jonesboro in a tract of immovable property.
The meeting began with Public Comments  where Jackson Parish Chamber of Commerce Director Wilda Smith expressed that the Chamber was eager to work closely with the Town in coming year. That was followed by Mayor Leslie Thompson updating the Board on the project he and the Public Works department have been working on in relation to residents that are currently not in the water billing system. 
A placement of a mobile home at 415 Northeast Street was then approved after the board voted to accept the December meeting minutes, December bills and the December financial statement that showed a breakdown of actual income/spending in relation to the budget.
In final action before the Public Works, Police and Fire Department reports were heard, the board approved the recommendation of Jonesboro Police Chief James “Spike” Harris to rehire Warren Johnson as a full time officer and to change the status of Faylon Napper from full time to reserve due to his Armed Forces deployment. 

School Board recognizes faculty members and students of the year

The monthly meeting of the Jackson Parish School board that was postponed from Monday, January 11th to Thursday, January 14th due to the winter storm that blanketed the area was worth the wait. Instead of the normal, run of the mill meeting that usually takes place the evening was a night of celebration as faculty members and students of the year were recognized.

The meeting that was held at the Jonesboro-Hodge High School cafeteria opened with Board members Mary Saulters, Dennis Clary, Wade McBride, Calvin Waggoner, Gerry Mims and Rickey McBride along with Business Manager Kristi Bass enjoying watching Superintendent David Claxton give plaques and certificates to the various award winners. Gloria Davis was absent.

Representatives from three separate categories received recognized including State of Louisiana faculty award winners, Jackson Parish Faculty and Jackson Parish Students representing Elementary, Middle School and High School divisions.

Two Jackson Parish faculty members received Louisiana Teacher of the Year recognition in their respective fields. Jonesboro-Hodge Middle School teacher/coach Tracy Taylor was named the 2020 Middle School Physical Education (PE) Teacher of the Year by the Louisiana Association for Health, PE, Recreation and Dance with Tristen Bergholt earned Teacher of the Year honors by the Louisiana School Counselor Association.

Faculty of the Year award winners for Jackson Parish for high schools were Chevonda Leonard of Jonesboro-Hodge High School as Principal of the Year and Kimberly Shows of Weston High as Teacher of the Year. Additional honorees were Pre-K, teacher Emily Smith of Weston High School for the Elementary School division middle school teacher of the year April Simonelli from Quitman. Receiving awards as Student of the Year were Weston High 5th grader, Anna Shows and both 8th grader Cali Deal and 12th grader Grace Sharplin of Quitman High.

After the award winners were recognized by Superintendent David Claxton the School Board continued with the meeting by approving the minutes from the December session followed by Matthew Margaglio of Kolder, Slaven and Company LLC presenting the June 2020 audit. The board then moved to adopt the recommended payments and declarations of the Executive/Finance and Building and Grounds Committee’s as follows.

Payment of General Fund bills – $2,269,138.20
Payment of Federal Program bills – $172,777,67
Payment of Food Service bills – $88,443.37
Payment of Sales Tax bills – $766,483.03
Payment of Special Education Fund bills – $32,568.42
Payment of District Maintenance bills – $112,462.79

Extend until March 31, 2021 any unused Covid Leave Days from 2020 and to add 10 days if the school system sends and employee home for Covid reasons to be paid from the CARES Act.

Declare as surplus property and discard the portable building at Jonesboro-Hodge (J-H) Middle School that was damaged by Hurricane Laura.

Declare as Surplus and discard the Reznor Heater in the old gym at Quitman High School.

Declare as Surplus and discard the Electric Wheel Chair ramp at J-H Middle School.

Declare as Surplus a Plasma Table (Torchmate II) and controls at Weston High School and move to JHHS welding department to be used for parts.

Purchase from Diadex for the amount of $8,565.00 eighteen (18) Eureka Math Manipulative Kits for QHS K-5 use to be paid from Title I School Based funds.

Accept low quote of $5,964.00 from Contact Paper Group, Inc. for 240 cases of copy paper for all schools to be paid from Title I School District Level funds.

Purchase from Amplify in the amount of $15,355.10 for Science Kits, Teacher Guides/Licenses and student notebooks for Grades 3-5 at Jonesboro-Hodge Elementary School, to be paid from Title I School Based funds.

Purchase from Amplify in the amount of $14,938.88 for Science Kits, Teacher Guides/Licenses and student notebooks for Grades 3-5 at Weston High School, to be paid from Title I School Based funds.

Purchase from Amplify in the amount of $15,771.39 for Science Kits, Teacher Guides/Licenses and student notebooks for Grades 3-5 at Quitman High School, to be paid from Title I School Based funds.

Accept low quote of $16,100.12 from SHI for 50 HP Chromebooks (with academic licenses and White Glove service), One Chromebook Cart, Four Dell Latitude Notebooks (laptops) and 2 Dell OptiPlex Computers for Weston High School to be paid from Title I School Bases funds.

Pay $15,609.02 to Sharon’s Little Angel Day Care Inc. as approved by the LA Department of Education to help early childhood community networks recover from income losses due to the pandemic, to be paid from COVID-19 Community Child Care Recovery Grant.

Accept low quote of $95,000.00 from Southern Roof and Vinyl Siding LLC for roof replacement at the Central Office to be paid from the General Fund

Accept the low quote of $5,967.00 from Bannister Energy Solutions for the re-routing of electrical and fiber wiring at the Central Office.

Following acceptance of policy revisions in the areas of: Purchasing, Bids and Quotations, Sports Injury Management and Concussions, Student Health Services, Child Abuse, Attendance Reports for Student Drivers, Employments of Superintendent and Retired Personnel, School Board Meeting, Suspension, Expulsion, Sale of Surplus, Sick Leave and Electronic Telecommunication Devices for Personnel the meeting was adjourned after Superintendent Claxton made his final comments.

Madison Coody and Andrew McBride named Homecoming Queen/King at Weston High School, January 15th was a night that twelve young ladies, their escorts, friends and family members will never forget as Weston High School celebrated Homecoming by recognizing the King, Queen and her Court along with Miss Merry Christmas 2020.weston homecoming court  

The gala event that took place prior to the Weston vs Forest girls basketball game began with Mallory Tolar, escorted by WHS Principal Ritchie Tolar being recognized as Miss Merry Christmas 2020. This was followed by the introduction of the Queens Court and their escorts in the order of Freshmen, Sophomore, Junior and Senior class representatives. The event was then climaxed by the introduction of Madison Coody and Andrew McBride as Queen and King.Miss Merry Christmas

Court members and their escorts included:

Freshman Class: Faith Beamesderfer escorted by Jude Otwell and Carroll Ann Foshee escorted by Tayt Henderson
Sophomore Class: Emma Kate McBride escorted by Bryan McMillan and Hannah McDowell escorted by Mitchel Mathews
Junior Class: Mattie Claire Beaubouef escorted by Caleb Waters, Mary Catherine Hay escorted by Elijah McBride and Makenzie Henderson escorted by Seth Peterson
Senior Class: Lauren Maxwell escorted by Jace Holt, Macie Hall escorted by Cooper Harvey and Audrey Welch escorted by Cody Kent

To see more pictures of the Homecoming ceremony and the Parade that took place earlier please visit:

“Second Season” begins for area prep teams

It is called the “second season” and if you ask any coach they will tell you it is the most important season of all and winning it is one of the main goals of their team. Beginning this coming Tuesday, every local area team and virtually the entire state, starts competing against teams in their respective districts. 

There was a time in Louisiana High School Athletic Association (LHSAA) when winning district was the only way a team could compete for a state title. Even after second place and even third place teams were allowed in expanded playoff brackets, winning the district title assured a school of a top seeding. Now  in the day of “power points”  determining seedings and virtually every team makes the playoffs  in the overall scheme of things winning district is not as vital as it used to be but claiming the title is still special. 

There is not a player or coach who ever graced the hardwoods that doesn’t remember clinching a district title.  The may not remember the score or even who they played against but they will always remember being the district champion.

It is also something that is talked about again and again years and decades later by old timers who remind all the young whippersnappers that when they played they were district champs. Being a district champion stays with you forever.  

In an effort to provide Jackson Parish Journal readers the best prep information that can be found district standings for each of area schools (bold print) will be provided each week throughout the rest of the season. Official LHSAA Class or Division rankings as well as the upcoming schedule for each for the week of January 20-26 is shown as well. District games are denoted with a (D). Tuesday, January 19th, games are not included due to press time requirements. 


District 2-5AOverall District
West Monroe8-31-0
West Ouachita6-60-1

January 22 (Friday): Ruston at West Ouachita (D), 
January 25 (Monday): Homer at Ruston, 
January 26 (Tuesday): Ruston at ASH (D)

District 1-2AOverallDistrict
North Caddo4-140-0
D’Arbonne Woods1-90-0

January 22 (Friday): Summerfield at Jonesboro-Hodge
January 26 (Tuesday): Lakeside at Jonesboro-Hodge (D)

District 3-2AOverallDistrict
Red River7-60-0

January 22 (Friday): Lakeview at Winnfield (D)
January 26 (Tuesday): Winnfield at Many (D)

District 1-1AOverallDistrict
Calvary Baptist16-52-0
Lincoln Prep2-90-1
Plain Dealing1-90-2
Magnolia SOE0-70-2

January 22 (Friday): Arcadia at Lincoln Prep (D)
January 26 (Tuesday): Calvary Baptist at Arcadia (D), Magnolia SOE at Lincoln Prep (D)

District 2-1AOverallDistrict
Oak Grove2-12-1
Sicily Island2-31-1
Ouachita Christian4-111-1
St. Frederick7-63-2
Delta Charter2-50-5
Cedar Creek6-80-5

January 22 (Friday): Cedar Creek at St. Frederick (D)
January 26 (Tuesday): Ouachita Christian at Cedar Creek (D)

District 1BOverallDistrict

January 21 (Thursday):Quitman at Saline
January 22 (Friday): Saline at Dodson (D)
January 25 (Monday): Dodson at Montgomery
January 26 (Tuesday):Dodson at Castor (D), Doyline at Saline (D)

District 2BOverallDistrict

January 21 (Thursday): Quitman at Saline, Weston at Ringgold
January 22 (Friday): G’town at Quitman, Union at Choudrant, Franklin Parish at Simsboro, Weston at Forest
January 26 (Tuesday): Choudrant at Quitman (D), Weston at Simsboro (D)

District 4COverallDistrict

January 21 (Thursday): Harrisonburg at Calvin (D)
January 26 (Tuesday): Atlanta at Calvin (D)


District 2-5AOverallDistrict
West Ouachita7-40-1
West Monroe6-40-1

January 22 (Friday): Ruston at West Ouachita (D), 
January 26 (Tuesday): Ruston at ASH (D)

District 1-2AOverallDistrict
D’Arbonne Woods3-90-0
North Caddo2-30-0

January 21 (Thursday): Gibsland-Coleman at Jonesboro-Hodge
January 22 (Friday): Summerfield at Jonesboro-Hodge
January 26 (Tuesday): Lakeside at Jonesboro-Hodge (D)

District 3-2AOverallDistrict
Red River4-70-0

January 22 (Friday): Lakeview at Winnfield (D)
January 26 (Tuesday): Winnfield at Many (D)

District 1-1AOverallRecord
Plain Dealing5-52-0
Calvary Baptist1-20-1
Lincoln Prep1-80-1

January 22 (Friday): Arcadia at Lincoln Prep (D)
January 26 (Tuesday): Calvary Baptist at Arcadia (D)

District 2-1AOverallDistrict
Ouachita Christian19-23-0
St. Frederick1-00-0
Cedar Creek12-22-1
Oak Grove7-31-2
Sicily Island0-50-2
Delta Charter5-42-2

January 22 (Friday): Cedar Creek at St. Frederick (D)
January 26 (Tuesday): Ouachita Christian at Cedar Creek (D)

District 1BOverallDistrict

January 21 (Thursday):Quitman at Saline
January 22 (Friday): Saline at Dodson (D)
January 26 (Tuesday):Dodson at Castor (D), Doyline at Saline (D)

District 2BOverallDistrict

January 21 (Thursday): Quitman at Saline, Weston at Ringgold
January 22 (Friday): G’town at Quitman, Union at Choudrant, Franklin Parish at Simsboro, Weston at Forest
January 26 (Tuesday): Choudrant at Quitman (D), Weston at Simsboro (D)

District 4COverallDistrict

January 21 (Thursday): Harrisonburg at Calvin (D)
January 26 (Tuesday): Atlanta at Calvin (D)

Jackson Parish Chamber of Commerce elects Officers and Board for 2021

Each year an organization will elect new officers to serve. The Jackson Parish Chamber of Commerce is no different and at the regularly scheduled January meeting outgoing Chamber President, Johnny Horton introduced the new officers and board members for 2021. 

president plaque chamberServing as the new President will be Andrea Malone with Darrell Avery stepping into the Vice President role. Karen Tolar was elected as Secretary with Carla Smith becoming Treasurer. Chamber Board members selected were Judie Blalock, Clay Carroll, Johnny Horton, Glen Kirkland Randy Layfield, Dean Rushing, Yumeaka Washington and John Williams. Director, Wilda Smith will continue her duties

The Chamber plays an important role in bettering Jackson Parish for not only the business community bot for all residents. Through their efforts business services are provided, opportunities and endeavors are developed and networking among various business owners is enhanced.

“Krewe of Life” Blood Drive at Jonesboro Library rescheduled for February 1st

The rare winter storm that blanketed the area in several inches of snow last week was beautiful to see but it did cause problems. One was the forced postponement of the “Krewe of Life” blood drive sponsored by Life Share Blood Center that was to take place at the Jackson Parish Library.

This has now been rescheduled for Monday, February 1st from 10:00am to 4:00pm. To register in advance contact Joanna Gibson at 318-259-5697 or go online to:

When you give blood, you give the gift of life as your donation will go to someone battling cancer, enduring sickle cell disease, undergoing surgery or suffering through a traumatic accident. As an added incentive, donors will receive a “Krewe of Life” T-Shirt. (while supplies last)

Several additional activities are scheduled for Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of this week as shown below. 

Upcoming Jonesboro Branch activities

January 20thBrown’s Hearing Market Research Program (10:00am – 4:00pm)
Participants can evaluate a new digital hearing instrument. This new digital technology is revolutionary in its ability to provide a natural sound experience within a device that is at the same time comfortable, discreet and easy to use. No registration required.
January 21 Break up with Salt (11:30am – 12:45 pm or 5:30pm – 6:30pm)
The virtual program, sponsored by the LSU AgCenter, provides information on the good and bad that the use of Salt does to your body. Register by calling Cathy Judd at 318-251-5134.
January 22A New Year – A New You (11:00am – 12:00pm)
The virtual program, sponsored by the LSU-AgCenter, features tips on how to manage your food dollars, staying physically active and having a balanced calorie, controlled diet. Register by calling Cathy Judd at 318-251-5134.
January 28Break up with Salt (11:30am – 12:45 pm or 5:30pm – 6:30pm)
February 1 – “Krewe of Life” Blood Donation Drive (10:00am – 4:00pm)

Upcoming Chatham Branch activities

A take home Fitness Class Program is available for check out by calling 318-249-2980

Children programs

Take Home Art Projects and Surprises are now available. To register call the Jonesboro branch at 318-259-5697 and speak to Terrye Shackleford.

Outreach Services

Monthly personalized delivery of books, audiobooks, magazines and more are available to residents of Jackson Parish, including Nursing Home residents and in-home daycares.

Traditional Services

Provided at both branches are the ability to check out Music CD’s, Graphic Novels, Books, Audio Books, Genealogy Resources, DVD’s, Magazines and E-books for your tablet/smartphone. Fax and copy services are also available. Printing can be done from your Smartphone or Tablets through a free mobile printing app by sending an email along with attachments to: or

Jonesboro Branch information:

Address: 614 South Polk Avenue
Phone: 318-259-5697
Fax: 318-259-3374
Hours of operation: Monday – Friday (8:00am – 5:30pm), Saturday (8:00am – 12:00pm)

Chatham Branch information:

Address: 1500 Pine Street
Phone: 318-249-2980
Fax: 318-249-2981
Hours of operation: Monday-Thursday (8:30am – 6:00pm), Friday & Saturday (8:30am-12:30pm)


Jackson Parish boy hoops teams go undefeated for the week

It might not have been as pretty to eyes as the snow that blanketed Jackson Parish on Sunday and Monday a week ago but for the coaches of the boys basketball teams in Jackson Parish the games played on the following Tuesday thru Friday was a beautiful sight to see.  Instead of a winter storm it was a “perfect storm” that was enjoyed as Quitman and Weston, who celebrated Homecoming on Friday, won both of their contests while J-H played only one but ended up with the most impressive victory of all. 

It wasn’t only the Jackson Parish teams that had a good week but the entire expanded Jackson Parish Journal coverage area which went 13-7 overall in games played January 12th thru the 15th. Area schools Dodson and Winnfield also won a pair of games  with Ruston, Saline and Choudrant winning one of two each. The schedule wasn’t as rewarding for Calvin and Cedar Creek which lost both of their contests and West Ouachita who dropped the only game they played. 

Weston 60 Forest 56 (Friday, January 15th): Jace Holt, who returned to the team earlier in the week after an extended absence, scored 28 points for a second straight time to help the Wolves honor Queen Madison Coody and her court with a victory. The season best tying, second straight win improved Weston to 8-11 and dropped fellow Class B foe, Forest to 2-11 on the year.

After both teams managed only seven points in the first eight minutes, Braden Theriot and Landon Roberts scored eight and seven respectively in the game deciding, second quarter that saw Weston win by a 24-13 margin. Theriot, who finished with 12 and has emerged as a solid scoring threat in 2021, was a perfect 7 of 7 from the free throw line where as a team Weston went 10 for 14.

Forest made a run in the second half to make the game close but Holt and Eli McBride, who scored 8 of his 10 points in the contest, was pivotal in helping Weston keep Forest at bay , who had only four players score but all reach double figures. Kaden Shirley added a second quarter trey to round out the scoring for the Wolves. 

Weston (8-11)     7 24 10 19 – 60
Forest (2-11)       7 13 13 23 – 56

WHS scoring: Holt 28, Theriot 12, McBride 11, Roberts 7, Shirley 3
Forest scoring: Seamons 19, Williams 15, Hudson 12, Miley 10 

Weston 74 Atlanta 59 (Tuesday, January 12th): It would be safe to say that things have definitely changed for the better for Weston in their long series against traditional Class C foe, Atlanta as the Wolves won easily for their sixth straight victory over the last three years after dropping 33 of 35 in the previous decade. 

Jace Holt scored a game high 28 points in the first game he has played in 2021 to help the Wolves stop a two game slide and improve to 7-11 on the year. After nearly two decades of being a dominate team in Class C, Atlanta has fallen on hard times in recent years and continue to struggle this season with a 1-6 record.

It was one of the best shooting nights of the year for Weston as they canned 11 shots from behind the arc as a team to pave the way to their season tying high in point total. Davis Tolar led the trey parade with four en-route to a strong 18 point performance. Eli McBride, Kaden Shirley and Cooper Harvey would also go down town as they finished the contest with 13, 8 and 3 respectively. Freshman Braden Theriot chipped in with four.

Weston (7-11)   14 19 17 24 – 74
Atlanta (1-6)     13 13 20 13 – 59

WHS scoring: Holt 28, Tolar 18, McBride 13, Shirley 8, Theriot 4, Harvey 3
AHS scoring: nash 26, Watkins 14, Slauter 6, Jenkins 4, Sykes 4, Nash 4

Quitman 49 Calvin 43 (Friday, January 15th): The Wolverines had to work the hardest to remain perfect in their two games when they grabbed victory out of the jaws of defeat with a tremendous second half rally over Calvin this past Friday night to win their season best fifth in a row by a 49-43 score. In earlier action the night before the Wolverines had no trouble taking down Castor 66-42.

Calvin raced out to a 20-5 first quarter lead over home-standing Quitman and went into the half with a commanding 29-12 advantage. The Wolverines flipped the script in the third to win the quarter by a 21-6 margin and outscored the Cougars 37-15 in the second half to win their 10th of the year against only 3 losses. Calvin fell to 3-3 on the year.

Joshua Smith led the way for Quitman with 15 points and 9 boards with freshman Logan Ponder adding a career high 13 on the strength of making 3 of 6 from behind the arc. Cooper Williams added nine and both Blake Carter and John Pabaya chipping in with five. L.D. Manning added a basket to round out the scoring. 

Both teams struggled with their shooting as Quitman hit only 35.5% of their shots and Calvin making 36% of theirs. From the three point line it was even worse as Calvin and Quitman both shot just a little over 16% but that is where the difference in the game was as the Wolverines made five bombs compared to just three for Calvin.

Quitman (10-3)      5 7 21 16 – 49
Calvin (3-3)           20 8   5    9 – 43

QHS scoring: Smith 15, Ponder 13, Williams 9, Carter 5, Pabaya 5, Manning 2

Quitman 66 Castor 42 (Thursday, January 14th): The Wolverines outscored Castor in every quarter and had a much easier time of it against former district rival Castor thanks to a double-double from Joshua Smith who scored 18 points on a perfect 9 of 9 shooting night  and added 13 rebounds. Cooper Williams was just one point behind with 17 and Ethan Everett chipped in with 7 as head coach Mike Black played the entire 15 man roster and nine players scored.

Quitman shot the ball well from inside the arc making 54.% of their attempts but it was the defensive effort that really stood out as the Wolverines allowed Castor to make only 14 of 53 attempts (26.4%) and just 4 of 18 from behind the arc.

Quitman (9-3)    9 16 22 19 – 66
Castor (2-6)         3 13 14 12 – 42

QHS scoring: Smith 18, Williams 17, Everett 7, Ponder 6, Rowe 4, Carter 3, Manning 2, Walker 2, Pabaya 2

Jonesboro-Hodge 46 Lakeview 44 (Friday, January 15th): Jonesboro-Hodge continued their trek through the “murderer’s row” portion of the schedule with impressive results by overcoming a ten point, third quarter deficit to take down 6th ranked Lakeview 46-44 in a thrilling Class 2A battle. The contest marked the 5th straight game that the Tigers have faced an opponent ranked in the top ten of their representative class. 

After spotting homestanding Lakeview to a 23-13 halftime advantage it was the second half offensive exploits of Ed “Robbie” Kary, Tydre Malone and Javeon Andrews and a tenacious fourth quarter defensive effort that  led the way to the impressive rally. Entering the second half with no points Kary scored 17 on the strength of five trey’s and Malone added 9 points to fuel the rally with the help of Andrews, who  added six of the 11 he totaled. Cameron Joe also chipped in with five second quarters points and Justin Calahan added four in the contest to help J-H improve to 4-4 while Lakeview dropped to 13-5 on the year. 

Jonesboro-Hodge (4-4)   7 6 9 24 – 46
Lakeview (13-5)             15 8 9 12 -44

JHHS scoring: Kary 17, Andrews 11, Malone 9, Joe 5, Calahan 4
LHS scoring: Shields 13, Howard 10, Sowell 8, Pikes 7, Driver 4, Slaughter 2

In other area action Dodson beat Downsville 69-58 and 75-57 in rare back to back contests and Winnfield bested Calvin 84-61 and Jena 77-49 to go undefeated for the week. Saline and Ruston split a pair of games as Ethan Roberts scored a career high 27, including 16 of Saline’s 18 first half points, in the 57-44 victory over Choudrant before the Bobcats fell to Negreet 72-38. Ruston won their sixth straight and district 2-5A opener by pounding Pineville 51-31 then fell to Ouachita 43-37 after being forced to play without freshman sensation Jamadrion Lillard. Choudrant beat Family Community Christian out of Winnsboro 65-11 before the loss to Saline and Arcadia, ranked 2nd in Class A, beat Haynesville 71-29 for their second straight 1-1A victory. 


Rich get richer in area prep girls play

There simply is no “middle class” among the Jackson Parish Journal coverage area girls prep hoops teams this year. With only a couple of exceptions  there is only two classifications – the “creamers” and the “dreamers.” Both continued their respective directional journeys during games played from January 12th – 18th.

In the “creamer” class, designated so as they are continuing to rise to the top of their respective classifications, the five teams that are represented carry a combined 48-17 record. Quitman, Cedar Creek, Winnfield and Choudrant continued to roll by winning all of their games played. Ruston split a pair but their loss carried no shame as it came to a traditional Class 5A power.  On the flip side the “dreamers”, as those who are dreaming of better fortunes: Arcadia, Saline, Calvin, Lincoln Prep and Dodson failed to taste victory once again and now stand with a paltry 4-38 combined record .

The jury is still out on JHHS, Weston and West Ouachita, who have been the exceptions to the two ruling groups, as they have all been up and down on the season. Weston is trending in the right direction by winning their last three after a yo-yo start over the first 15 games to move to a season best two games over the .500 mark. In the case of Jonesboro-Hodge, they are currently a rudderless ship as head coach Brittani Fields has been sidelined since mid December due to having surgery performed. Her presence has been obviously been missed as the Lady Tigers have dropped their last three after opening the year with six victories in seven games. Her return will be a welcome sight.  West Ouachita has simply played to the mid level team they are. They have beaten the teams they are supposed to and lost to the better ones. Now that district 2-5A play has begun where several teams are very good this year, they have their work cut out for them.  

Quitman 53 Calvin 36 (Friday, January 15th): The battle between the “have” and the “have not” went as expected with Quitman  rolling to their season best, sixth straight victory despite making only 18 of 73 shots for a 24.7% field goal average. The main advantage in the game came at the three point line where Quitman, as they have done several times this season, actually shot better from behind the arc than they did inside it. Eight of the 18 made shots were trey’s with Brayli Stewart and Bethany Leach making three apiece and Clara Womack adding two to lift Quitman to a sterling 14-2 record.

Calvin, who was trailing 50-25 after three quarters and has won only one of eight games played this year, didn’t fare any better with only 14 of 55 shots going in (25.5%)  and only 2 of 12 from behind the arc finding the mark.

Womack led the way with 16 points followed by Stewart and Leach who had 12 and 11 respectively. Cali Deal chipped in with 8 and Summer Grillette, Maddie Vail and Maddie Kate Brymer added two points each. Calvin was led by Trawick with 14 and Caskey with ten. 

Quitman (14-2)   19 16 15 3 – 53
Calving (1-7)        11 11 3 11 – 36

QHS scoring: Womack 16, Stewart 12, Leach 11, Deal 8, Brymer 2, Grillette 2, Vail 2
CHS scoring: Trawick 14, Caskey 10, Womack 4, Pullig 2, unknown 5

Quitman 50 Castor 48 (Thursday, January 14th) Eighth grader Cali Deal was faced with a tough decision. Should she go to the re-scheduled Jackson Parish School Board meeting to receive her Junior High Student of the Year award or play the game against Castor. Head coach Kyle Leach and the rest of the Lady Wolverines are glad she made the choice she did. 

Deal was instrumental in the victory by grabbing 12 rebounds and scoring 11 points, none more important than the two she made with just three seconds left to lift Quitman to the road victory. Her game winning shot came about when after the Lady Wolverines held the ball for the final thirty seconds, Bethany Leach drove the lane and smartly reacted to the Castor defense, which collapsed on her  and found Deal for the short jumper. 

The gym was jumping in the first half as Castor took a 32-22 lead into the break but Quitman came out in the third quarter and blitzed the Lady Tigers 20-7 to turn the game around. Brayli Stewart, who has emerged this year to become a consistent scoring threat, led the Lady Wolverines with 14 followed by 13 from Leach after a fine 3 of 5 performance from the three point line. Clara Womack added 8 and both Maddie Vail and Emma Carter chipped in a basket.

Quitman (13-2)   11 11 20 8 – 50
Castor (6-6)          19 13  7  9 – 48 

QHS scoring: Stewart 14, Leach 13, Deal 11, Womack 8, Carter 2, Vail 2
CHS scoring: n/a

Weston 71 Forest 42 (Friday, January 15th): It is the goal of every coach to have the team peaking heading into district play. Head coach Stacy Tucker seems to have reached his goal. After a yo-yo like, first fifteen games of the year where the Lady Wolves would bounce back and forth from winning one to losing one Weston looks to be hitting their stride. With the surprisingly easy victory that saw Weston get off to a commanding 16-4 start and never look back the Lady Wolves have now won a season best third straight, gained their first victory over a team with a winning record and moved two games above .500 for the first time all year.

After changing from her junior maid dress where she was honored before the contest in Homecoming ceremonies, Mary Catherine Hay, who finished with a team high 19 points, drained three of her four trey’s on the night in the first half to pace Weston to a commanding 34-16 lead. Emma Kate McBride and Briley Peterson also reached double figures with 16 and 15 respectively while Mallory Tolar and Lainee Trosclair add seven and six points each. Mary Beth Bond scored 3 and Lakerria Austin added a pair of free throws to round out the scoring.

Weston (10-8) 16 18 19 18 – 71
Forest (7-5) 4 12 16 10 – 42

WHS scoring: Hay 19, McBride 16, Peterson 15, Tolar 7, Trosclair 6, Bond 2, Austin 2
FHS scoring: Craten 16, Grimes 9, Mulkey 8, Ross 8, Sumrall 1

Weston 60 Atlanta 50 (Thursday, January 14th) In the first of back to back contests, Weston celebrated “Homecoming Eve” by turning in one of the their best balanced scoring performance of the year. All five of Weston’s top point scorer’s were in instrumental in getting the Lady Wolves off to a 21-12 first quarter advantage, led by six apiece from Emma Kate McBride and Briley Peterson.

They were two of the four who finished with double digits with 14 and 13 respectively combining with Lakerria Austin and Mary Catherine Hay, who would add 13 and 10 points in the victory. Mallory Tolar added seven points and Lainee Trosclair ended with three.

While McBride played a key role in the early going it was her play in the fourth that made the difference in the game. With Atlanta playing their best game of the year to date during their 1-6 season and trailing by only one entering the fourth quarter, McBride ruined any hopes of an upset by draining a pair of trey’s and adding a two pointer to help Weston take a nine point advantage over the final eight minutes. Princis Coff led Atlanta with a game high 26 points .

Weston (9-8) 21 12 8 19 -60
Atlanta (1-6) 12 18 10 10 – 50

WHS scoring: McBride 14, Peterson 13, Austin 13, Hay 10, Tolar 7, Trosclair 3
AHS scoring: Goff 26, Winslow 9, Sapp 6, Herbert 6, Stewart 3

In other area action, Jonesboro-Hodge lost to Lakeview 63-45 for their third straight defeat after beginning the year 6-1. Cedar Creek and Choudrant continued to impress with the Lady Cougars taking 46-28 and 59-41 district 2-1A victories over Oak Grove and Tensas and the Lady Aggies besting FCCS and Saline by 53-46 and 60-38 scores. Ruston split a pair of district 2-5A games by beating Pineville 61-56 and losing to Ouachita 73-54 that put the kibosh on a nine game winning streak.

The Elevator Girl

It was foggy in New York on the morning of July 28, 1945. Twenty-year-old Betty Lou Oliver made her way to the 102-story Empire State Building where she worked as an “elevator girl.” At 1,250 feet, it was the world’s tallest building. Prior to their push-button automation in the 1970s, elevators were manually controlled. Elevator operators controlled the elevators speed and direction by moving a large lever. Elevator operators were expected to consistently stop their elevator in perfect alignment with each floor. Betty Lou took the job as elevator girl at the Empire State Building while she awaited the return of her husband, a sailor who was overseas. Betty Lou had given proper notice and was to quit working at the Empire State Building within a couple of days.

At about 8:50 a.m., an Army B-25 Mitchell bomber with a crew of three, piloted by Lieutenant Colonel William F. Smith, Jr., left Bedford Army Air Field in Massachusetts en route to Newark Metropolitan Airport in New Jersey. When the pilot neared New York, he radioed the control station at LaGuardia Field for a weather report. Victor Barden, chief control operator at La Guardia reported to Smith that there was a heavy fog which was down to 900 feet, and visibility was worsening. Barden told Smith to descend to 1,000 feet once he had cleared New York City and was over New Jersey. Regulations at the time stipulated that airplanes flying over New York had to remain at an altitude of at least 1,500 feet to avoid skyscrapers.

Barden radioed to Smith about the thick fog and said, “I cannot see the top of the Empire State Building now.” “Roger,” Smith responded in acknowledgement.

For reasons unknown, Smith descended to 1,000 feet while still over New York City. People on the ground looked skyward as they heard the low flying airplane, but they could only see the thick fog. People in nearby skyscrapers saw the B-25 pass by their windows. They, too, were unable to see the Empire State Building because of the thick fog.

At 9:52 a.m., the B-25 struck the 79th floor of the Empire State Building. The force of the crash rocked the building. Fuel from the B-25 erupted into a bright orange flame which destroyed everything on the 78th and 79th floors, and cleared the fog around the building. One of the B-25’s engines broke away from the airplane and flew nearly one hundred feet, tore through seven walls on the 79th floor, destroyed the suspension and safety cables on at least three elevators, and landed with an explosion on the roof of a nearby 17-story building. Other fragments from the airplane and from the building itself landed as far away as five blocks.
Betty Lou was in her elevator above the 80th floor when the airplane struck the building.

She felt a momentary shudder. Suddenly, the elevator plummeted downward. Betty Lou clung to the handrail in the elevator to keep from floating. She felt as though the elevator was leaving her. She worked the controls of the elevator, but got no response. She continued to fall with the elevator. A searing flash of fire enveloped Betty Lou, and she raised her left arm to protect her face. A moment later the fire was gone. Betty Lou tried the controls again, but they still had no effect. She picked up the elevator’s telephone and tried to call the ground floor, but the telephone line was dead. Betty Lou yelled and pounded on the elevator floor and walls.

The elevator continued its decent. At the basement level of the Empire State Building’s elevator system were large oil buffers, one per elevator, which were designed to stop a descending elevator car during an emergency. After falling nearly 1,000 feet, the elevator struck the oil buffer’s piston. However, the elevator was traveling much too fast for the oil buffer to bring the car to a cushioned stop. The elevator struck with such force that it drove the oil buffer’s piston through the floor of the elevator and through the elevator car itself, from bottom to top. The concrete floor below the oil buffer “was crushed like an egg shell.” The piston was so large that, with the exception of an eight-inch space in one of the elevator’s corners, it penetrated and destroyed the elevator. Luckily, this eight-inch space was where Betty Lou was standing when the elevator crashed.

On a normal weekday in 1945, the Empire State Building had a population of about 65,000 people, which consisted of about 15,000 employees and 50,000 visitors. On this day, however, few visitors entered the building because thick fog and intermittent rain limited the views from the observation decks. Only a small number of the building’s employees were working inside the building because it was a Saturday morning. The 78th floor, one of the two floors which had been completely destroyed by fire, was vacant, as were the 81st to 85th floors. Firefighters extinguished the fire in less than fifty minutes. The damage caused by the crash and fire did not weaken the structural integrity of the building. Only a few people were on the streets because of the intermittent rain, none of which were injured by falling debris. Investigators estimated that only about 1,500 people were in the building. Had it not been a rainy Saturday morning, the crash would have certainly been more devastating. Of the estimated 1,500 people in the building, only fourteen people died and another twenty-six people were injured.

Betty Lou was among the injured. She was trapped in the eight-inch space in the corner of her elevator for hours before rescuers located her. She received burns from when her elevator passed through the searing fire on the 79th floor. The force of the elevator’s sudden impact broke her legs and severed her spine. She received bruises and cuts on her body from the oil buffer’s piston and fragments of her elevator. On December 2, 1945, after spending four months in the hospital, Betty Lou left the hospital and was able to walk, albeit with her legs and back in braces, five feet from her wheel chair to a waiting car. When Betty Lou arrived at work on that rainy, foggy, July morning, she had no idea that the events of the day would set a record. You see, Betty Lou Oliver holds the Guinness World Record for “longest fall survived in a lift (elevator).”