February 9th MinsThe Town of Jonesboro has received a Community Development Block Grant from the state of Louisiana in the amount of $1,199,451.00 to help with repairs at several lift stations. The announcement was made by Jonesboro Mayor Leslie Thompson during his update at the regularly schedule monthly meeting of the Jonesboro Board of Alderman that was held by tele-conference on Tuesday, February 9th.
After the roll call indicated that Aldermen Devin Flowers, Nia Evans-Johnson, James Ginn, Robbie Siadek and Pete Stringer were all present the meeting began with a public hearing on Ordinance 2021-001, which relates to the sale of a certain tract of land owned by the Town of Jonesboro being declared as surplus property. After no comments were given within the allotted time given the hearing was closed followed by the town council moving forward with the adoption of the ordinance.
In additional business it was agreed to allow a trailer house to be moved from 415 Northeast St. to 218 Holley Drive and the recommendation by the Jonesboro Police Department to terminate Lana Horton was approved. Reports from the Fire, Police and Public Works was then accepted as was the bills, financials and meeting minutes from the month of January. In final business, Resolutions 2021-003, 004 and 005 regarding the South, East and North Ponds were then approved.
No school in Jackson Parish has ever won a girls prep state basketball championship. It won’t happen this year either. That was assured Tuesday evening when Jonesboro-Hodge and Quitman, both who entered the contests as home favorites according to their seeds, got bounced from the 2020-21 LHSAA playoffs – HARD!
They weren’t alone as it was a bad night for north Louisiana teams all around. Only two team from the Jackson Parish Journal coverage area are still alive (Cedar Creek and Lincoln Prep) and only ten teams from above Alexandria lived to play another round. Four of those were in Class 5A (West Monroe, Captain Shreve, Parkway and Benton) while two play in Division IV (Cedar Creek and Ouachita Christian.) Of special note Huntington of Shreveport beat Bolton 100-31 in Class 4A action for the most points scored in the playoffs to date. In other contests involving JPJ coverage area teams Ruston fell to Hahnville 42-38, Choudrant lost to Anacoco 63-38 and Calvin fell to Reeves 64-39.
Bell City 47 Quitman 42: Behind Clara Womack’s five trey’s Quitman led 21-19 at the half. In the second half Quitman personified the temperatures that plagued the area last week as they went cold, as in bitter frigid cold. The Lady Wolverines made only four baskets and just 11 points the entire second half. It wasn’t as if Bell City was doing anything special as Quitman had many good looks that just didn’t go down.
“It was just one of those nights where we just couldn’t score, especially in the second half,” said QHS head coach Kyle Leach. “I am extremely proud of our defensive effort as we held one of the best scorers in the state well below her average and even though we couldn’t make anything still had a chance till late when we had to start taking chances.”
The loss ended one of the best seasons in QHS history that saw the Lady Wolverines win 23 games against only 3 losses. Bell City improves to 16-7 and now faces #5 Anacoco. Womack led Quitman with 19 points followed by Emma Carter with eight. Brayli Stewart and Cali Deal with three each and Kaylee Ford had two. Bell City was led by Josie Ogea with 19.
Rayville 86 JHHS 64: The Lady Tigers were simply overmatched by the swarming Hornets who was noticeably quicker, shot better, out-rebounded and forced more turnovers in the contest played at Weston High due to the JHHS gymnasium still not having water available. That is not a slight to J-H, who ended the year with 13-6 record. Rayville is just all around a better team, that makes one wonder how in the world they got a #9 ranking.
Of the nine losses they suffered this year seven were to Class 5A schools. The other two were to the second ranked team in Division II, which is the equivalent of a Class 3A school. The undefeated district 2-2A champs have now won 10 in a row to improve to 16-9 and since their district schedule and the two playoffs games they are averaging 80 points a game, by far the best in the state. Xabrianna Jackson led JHHS with 28 points followed by Chamya Waters with 15 and Yahzmynne Andrews with 10. Zymea Hoggro had seven and Jessica Bradford four. Rayville was led by Amari West who had 40 points and Lalaina Wood with 12.
Stars live up to the hype! The two contests pitted four of the better guards in the state in seniors Bell City’s, Josie Ogea and Quitman’s, Clara Womack in the Class B matchup w and junior’s Xabrianna Jackson and Amari West of Rayville. Each came in with star billing and lived up to the hype by playing tremendously. Ogea, who is committed to play at LSU-Eunice, scored 10 points of her 20 points in the pivotal fourth quarter to break open a close game while Womack was unstoppable in the first half making five trey’s and scoring 17 points. Jackson also had a big night with 28 points that included an impressive 10 of 12 showing from the free throw line but none had the game that West had. The junior Rayville standout made three trey’s, went 7/7 from the line and scored 38 of her 40 points in only three quarters.
#13 Bell City (16-7)
#4 Quitnan (23-3)
BCHS scoring: Ogea 20, Merritt 10, Leonards 9, Wiche 6, Folse 2 QHS scoring: Womack 19, Carter 8, Stewart 3, Deal 3, Ford 2
#8 JHHS (13-6)
#9 Rayville (16-9)
JHHS scoring: Andrews 28, Waters 15, Andrews 10, Hoggro 7, Bradford 4 RHS scoring; West 40, Wood 12, Smith 11, Miller 9, Webb 8, Webb 3, Jackson 2, Jones 1
Jonesboro schools will remain in virtual classroom status on Wednesday. The statement was issued by Jackson Parish Schools Superintendent, David Claxton, after consulting with Town of Jonesboro officials about the ongoing water transmission issues that have plagued the town for the last two weeks.
No information was given on when Jonesboro schools would be able to return to holding sessions on campus. Daily updates can be obtained by visiting the Jackson Parish School District webpage: jpsb.us.
The Louisiana High School Athletic Association (LHSAA) 2020-21 boys basketball playoff brackets has been released. A total of 275 schools in seven classes and five divisions will compete for the right to play in “Marsh Madness,” as the state tournament is affectionately dubbed, from March 11-13 on the campus of Southeastern Louisiana University (SLU) in Hammond.
Jonesboro-Hodge and Quitman along three other Jackson Parish Journal area coverage teams Saline, Winnfield and Choudrant will host first round games on Friday, February 26th. Weston, Ruston, Lincoln-Prep and Dodson will hit the road. Arcadia and Simsboro each first round byes meaning both along with Calvin (Class C) and Cedar Creek (Division IV),who competes in 16 team brackets, will see their playoff chase begin on March 2nd.
In respect to the three Jackson Parish schools, JHHS received a #15 seed and will face #18 Avoyelles Parish (13-12) in a Class 2A matchup at either JHHS or Weston depending on the ongoing water situation that is plaguing the Town of Jonesboro. Quitman at #11 in Class B will host #22 Dodson while #25 Weston will trek to #9 Negreet.
In other first round games, tenth seeded Saline and #14 Choudrant will welcome #23 Stanley and #19 Converse repectively in Class B, while #10 Winnfield will play host to #23 St. Helena. In Class 5A, Ruston and Lincoln Prep, both seeded #19 in their classes, will travel to East St. John and East Iberville.
After the week of winter weather and severe problems with water transmission brought activity to a standstill the Jackson Parish Library (JPL) in Jonesboro is pleased to announce that they are once again open to the public. The news is not as good at the Chatham branch which will remain closed until further notice due to water damage suffered from a busted line in the ceiling sprinkler system that caused some flooding.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: If you are late in returning books and materials that were scheduled to be brought back during the week of February 14th-21st you won’t be fined as long as returns are made by the end of this week.
Scheduled events for February!
February 25th – STRESS LESS – Taking care of your heart! The LSU-Ag Center is offering important information on taking care of your heart this Thursday, February 26th from 11:00-11:30am. To register please call Cathy Judd at 318-251-5134 or Kimberlyn Jones at 318-263 -7400.
February 26th – Last call for Bookmobile design submittals! Only two more days are left to submit artwork for the exterior design of the new bookmobile that the JPL will be receiving this summer. One winner will have their design featured on the bookmobile while all other designs will be displayed throughout the Jonesboro Branch for the community to view.
Artist of the Month! Four more days are left to submit your artwork to have a chance to be selected as Artist of the Month. To make a submittal contact Joanna at 318-259-5697 or send by email to: email@example.com
Win at T-Shirt! To help celebrate the upcoming March 2nd birthday of Dr. Seuss, readers up to the fourth grade are challenged to read as many Dr. Seuss books as possible with a T-Shirt given away to everyone who reads at least ten books. There are a few rules…. 1. You must check the book out from the Library 2. A log must be kept showing what books were read. 3. Books must be read by March 2nd.
Harry Potter collection available on Hoopla! – The entire Harry Potter collection has landed is now available through hoopla! You can enjoy the ebooks & audiobooks with your library card!
Free hand sanitizer given with checkout! While supplies last free hand sanitizers are given with each checkout throughout the month of February
Black History Month – Only a few more days are left to be able to see the featured books available for check out in celebration of Black History Month on prominent individuals and events that have helped change the course of history.
Learn about the COVID-19 vaccine – Do you have questions concerning the COVID-19 vaccine? Ms. Jeanette White from the Office of Public Health will be available at the Jonesboro branch, by appointment only, every Monday and Thursday at 1:00pm to answer any questions you may have and provide information. To secure an appointment either call 318-259-6601, send fax to 318-259-1146 or send email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pine Belt Multi-Purpose representative available for consultation – Client Service Manager TyAnne Williams is available for consultation. You can receive help with Unemployment Application Assistance, SNAP Benefits Application, Medicaid/Medicare Enrollment, Social Security Benefits Application and Social Security Card Applications. Information on Financial Counseling Courses, Commodities Distribution and Senior Food Boxes will also be provided. To secure an appointment please call 318-259-6444.
SNAP Program assistance – Ms. Jerlissa Elzy, who is the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Outreach Coordinator is available for assistance with Food Stamp Applications and redetermination as well as helping with a simplified report by calling 318-237-7764 or 318-322-3567.
Art Classes: To register for March art classes please come by the Jonesboro Branch and speak with Terrye Shackleford or contact her by phone at 318-259-5697. Classes are tentatively scheduled to be held from 4:00 to 5:00pm on select Tuesday’s and Thursday’s at the Jonesboro Branch and on select Monday’s at the Chatham Branch.
“Grab and Go” program: Art work supplies and instructions can be picked up at the Jonesboro Branch and taken home for those who are registered.
Reading Eggs and Math Seeds program enrolling. If you would like to enroll your child please contact: Terrye Shackleford at 318-269-5697. Please be prepared to provide a cell phone number that can be used for a text to be received that will contain your child’s username and password for the program. Please note that this program is NOT HELD AT THE LIBRARY but is for use at home. As a requirement you must have internet service at your home to participate. Your child can work on an iPad, Laptop, Computer or Kindle of any kind. There is no cost to participate.
Homework Louisiana – Powered by tutor.com and found at HomeworkLa.org this online service is very beneficial in providing assistance with school studies for students of all ages.
Monthly personalized delivery of books, audiobooks, magazines and more are available to residents of Jackson Parish, including Nursing Home residents and in-home daycares.
Additional Services and Resources
Binge Box – Checkout multiple movies for one week that counts as only one checkout.
Vox Books (Books that talk) – The first audio books that live in print books. The attached VOX Reader transforms an ordinary print book into an all-in-one read along. No need for computers, tablets or CD’s. Simply push a button to listen and read.
Flipster – An easy to use resource for viewing best selling digital magazines.
Freegal Music – Service that provides access to virtually every song ever recorded in over 100 countries. Includes catalog of legendary artists and over 40,000 music videos.
Chilton Automotive Guide – A must for those do-it-yourself auto repair projects. Provides detailed sketches and instructions on virtually every repair job and new parts installation for all makes and models of automobiles.
PrinterOn – Printing can be done from your Smartphone or Tablets through this free app by sending an email along with attachments to: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Fax and copy services: Available at both branches. Pricing dependent on size.
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)
Mark your calendar for Saturday, February 27th and get up early to come and support Beech Springs Baptist Church Rummage Sale to benefit the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and additional select charities. Doors to the Fellowship Hall of Beech Springs Baptist Church, located at 3942 Beech Springs Road in Quitman, that is overflowing with merchandise, goods and clothing, will open at 7:00am with the sale lasting till 3:00pm.
The initial response was tremendous as local residents stepped up big time by donating more items than ever before in the nine year history of the annual event The hopes now are that you will continue to show your support by attending and making purchases or if you desire, simply make a donation. Your support will not only help a child or an under-privileged person, it can also be instrumental in saving a life.
Time is running out for Jackson Parish Journal readers to get $10.00 off on any oil change performed by the certified service staff at Jay Mallard Ford. The offer will remain in effect until February 28th so you need to make arrangements now to have your oil changed by certified and factory trained technicians. Drive-in’s are welcome but in order to minimize the time it takes it is advised to call in advance at 318-259-9881 and make an appointment.
Saline took a 2-1 first inning lead but Quitman batted around twice in the top of the second inning on the strength of 7 hits, five walks and five errors to plate 15 runs on their way to a 19-3 season opening victory. The contest was played at the Jackson Parish Recreation Department on Monday.
The Wolverines totaled 11 hits in the contests led by a 4/4 performance by leadoff batter Madeline Vail, who also scored 2 runs. Madison Kaye Brymer went 2/3 with a triple, scored three and drove in three more as did Marley Bell who added two runs of her own. Karley Huckaby, Averie Williams (shown in picture), Emily Maxwell and Taylor Harvey also scored a pair of runs each.
Seventh grader, Maggie Guyotte, won her varsity debut after giving up just one hit and striking out four in two innings of work. Williams, who led Saline at the plate with a double and two runs scored took the loss for Saline who fell to 0-2 on the year following a loss to Zwolle earlier in the day. Zummah also scored for Saline.
WP- Guyotte, LP – J. Williams 2B – J. Williams 3B – Brymer RBI – Brymer – 3, Bell – 3 SB – Harvey 2, Huckaby 2
At the turn of the twentieth century, traveling by commercial steamships, commonly called ocean liners, was all the rage. The finest luxuries were reserved exclusively for first class passengers such as the most exquisite dining saloons, elaborate state rooms, libraries, smoking rooms, gymnasiums, and exclusive access to the main deck, called the promenade deck. Second class passengers enjoyed more modest experiences with sparsely decorated smaller state rooms, smoking rooms, libraries, and dining facilities. Third class passengers were housed in cabins that contained little more than a bed, were fed adequate meals, and had access to few, if any, amenities.
Deep in the bowels of these mammoth vessels, well below the third-class areas, were the ships’ engine rooms and boiler rooms. These rooms were extremely hot and dirty. Workers in the boiler rooms usually worked shirtless due to the heat and were collectively called “the black gang” because they were usually covered with black coal soot. Black gangs consisted of stokers, firemen, trimmers, and a “peggy,” the firemen’s steward who brought food and refreshments to the group.
John Priest was a professional seaman from the port city of Southampton, England. He worked as a black gang stoker on several British steam ships. He and the other stokers had the back-breaking task of shoveling coal into the boiler’s firebox. John had worked on the sea since his youth and planned to have a long seafaring career.
In April 1915, on the eve of World War I, the British Admiralty converted the two-year-old RMS Alcantara, a royal mail ship, into an armed merchant cruiser. Workers fitted 6-inch guns, antiaircraft guns, and added depth charges to the ship. For almost a year, with John as part of the ship’s black gang, the Alcantara searched for German ships and submarines in the North Atlantic Ocean. On February 29, 1916, the Alcantara intercepted the Greif, a German merchant raider ship disguised as a Norwegian ship. The crew of the Alcantara signaled the Greif to stop for inspection. The Greif slowed to a near stop, but as the Alcantara reached a distance of about 2,000 yards away, the crew of the Greif increased its speed and opened fire. The Alcantara returned fire. For nearly two hours, the ships exchanged volleys, and both received extensive, fatal damages. The Alcantara capsized and sank, followed by the Greif later that same day. 68 men from the Alcantara died along with 230 men from the Greif. John was injured by shrapnel from a torpedo, but he survived.
The British Admiralty requisitioned the passenger ship HMHS Britannic as a hospital ship. Rooms on the upper deck which had been designed for pleasure were transformed into rooms for the wounded. The first-class dining and reception rooms were transformed into operating rooms. On the morning of November 21, 1916, Britannic was transporting wounded soldiers from the Greek island of Lemnos back to England through the Kea Channel when an explosion rocked the ship. Unbeknownst to the crew of the Britannic, exactly a month earlier, a German submarine, the U-73, had planted mines in the Kea Channel. All efforts to save the Britannic failed. Within 65 minutes after striking the mine, Britannic disappeared into the water. Britannic holds the record for being the largest ship lost in World War I and is the world’s largest sunken passenger ship. Once again, John survived.
The British Admiralty converted the RMS Asturius, a royal mail ship, into a hospital ship. John joined the black gang of the Asturius. On the night of March 20, 1917, John’s ship was steaming toward Southampton with all of its navigational lights on. Large illuminated red crosses distinguished John’s ship as a hospital ship. The Asturius had just disembarked approximately 1,000 wounded soldiers at Avonmouth and was headed for Southampton, England. At around midnight, German U-boat UC-66 torpedoed John’s ship. The crew aimed the damaged ship toward the shore and ran it aground. Nearly two dozen people died and many more were injured but again, John survived.
John was next assigned to the SS Donegal. Built in 1904, the Donegal served as a passenger ferry for an English railway company until World War I. The British Admiralty converted this ship into an ambulance ship to ferry wounded soldiers from France back to England. On April 17, 1917, the Donegal was ferrying 610 lightly wounded soldiers across the English Channel. Ambulance ships had been required to be clearly marked and lit to make them easier to identify. However, the British Navy disregarded these requirements after the Germany Navy began targeting these marked ships. The Donegal was not marked as an ambulance ship. Unbeknownst to the crew of the Donegal, a German submarine, the UC-21, was lurking beneath the water. The German submarine fired torpedoes at the Donegal. Explosions shook the ship. Within a matter of minutes, the Donegal sank. The blasts from the torpedoes and subsequent sinking claimed the lives of 29 wounded British soldiers and 12 members of the crew. John survived, albeit with a serious head injury.
John’s reputation preceded him. Rumors of John’s survival record spread throughout black gangs in England. Rumors also spread that many of John’s black gang coworkers did not survive the sinking’s. Many believed that it was bad luck to work on the same ship as the unsinkable stoker. Each time John arrived at a new ship to take his place among its black gang, the other workers refused to work. John, in body, may have been unsinkable, but his career was not. Unable to find a black gang that would work with him, John had no choice but to find employment on dry land. His days at sea had ended.
John Priest, the unsinkable stoker, holds the distinction of being the only person to survive the sinking’s of five ships which included the HMHS Asturias, RMS Alcantara, SS Donegal, HMHS Britannic, and another ship. The first ship’s sinking which John Priest miraculously survived, albeit with frost-bitten toes and an injured leg, happened on the morning of April 15, 1912. That ship, arguably the most famous ship in history, was called the RMS Titanic.
Jeffery R. Devlin (Polson, MT) – Possession of a stolen vehicle Donneil D. Brown (Jonesboro, LA) – Resisting and officer x2, Remaining after being forbidden, Bench Warrant on charge of disturbing the peace.
Weston High and Quitman High will hold classes on Monday while all Jonesboro schools will continue to have virtual classes until further notice. Jackson Parish School Superintendent David Claxton made the announcement through a written statement Sunday night that was provided to the Jackson Parish Journal along with other media outlets. In regard to bus transportation across the parish Claxton indicated that there is the possibility that some buses may run a little late due to potential safety precautions. Jonesboro schools had to remain in virtual classroom status due to the ongoing water situation in the town.
Statement submitted by Superintendent Claxton:
Students will return to school tomorrow at both Weston and Quitman. Buses will be running, but for safety reasons, may be running a little late. Please be patient. Due to water outages, Jonesboro schools will be virtual with staff reporting to complete virtual lessons and/or student packets.
Teachers will send out information to parents as to what their child needs to do to complete the assigned lessons. We will continue to monitor the water situation and will let parents know tomorrow if the students will be able to return to Jonesboro on Tuesday. Please be safe in your travels.
According to Jonesboro Mayor Leslie Thompson the boil advisory that was issued for the Town of Jonesboro this past Friday will remain in effect throughout the early part of the week with the hopes that soon the order will be able to be lifted. As a further update the Water Department reports that all leaks and bursts on the lines have been repaired and if you don’t already have full water transmission back it should be recognized in a day or two at the latest as wells across the town fill back up.
“I am pleased to report that most of the town is back on line but until further notice we are still under a boil advisory” said Thompson. “We realize that there are a few that are still without water but as soon as the wells fill up that will be resolved.”
A boil advisory is issued because the community’s water is, or could be, contaminated with germs that can make you sick. Standard recommendations on what to do usually include this advice:
Use bottled or boiled water for drinking and to prepare and cook food.
If bottled water is not available, bring water to a full rolling boil for 1 minute then allow it to cool before use.
Boil tap water even if it is filtered.
Do not use water from any appliance connected to your water line, such as ice and water from a refrigerator.
Thompson also encourages residents to provide assistance by using their water sparingly this week as the less that is used the quicker the various wells, towers and water chests across town can fill up entirely. This is important so that optimum water pressure can be attained.
Jonesboro-Hodge will play their Class 2A opening round girls basketball playoff contest against Pine High School at 2:00pm on Sunday at Weston High. The move was forced to be made due to the lack of water at the JHHS gymnasium which was also the reason that the contest, that was originally slated for Saturday, was pushed back a day. It will mark the second straight day that Weston High will have hosted a first round game, the first being Saturday evening, where home-standing Lady Wolves fell victim to Pitkin 63-61 in a thrilling, hard fought contest that was still in doubt as the final buzzer sounded.
Weston falls 64-61 to late Pitkin rally
(Saturday, February 20) The loss that ended the #15th seeded, Lady Wolves season with a 13-15 record was a bitter pill to swallow as #18 Pitkin led for only about four minutes in the entire contest and never until midway through the third quarter. . One has to look no further than to Abby Robinson’s late game heroics to find the catalyst for the Lady Tigers victory, who improves to 9-14 on the year and now moves on to play fellow district 5B rival and #2 seed Fairview this Tuesday.
Steals by Robinson on back to back Weston possessions helped give Pitkin their largest lead of the contest at 58-55 with a little over three minutes left. The long range, bombing guard who made a four trey’s on the night, including two critical trifectas in the fourth quarter then sank her final one with just 58 seconds left that gave Pitkin a 63-61 lead and put the proverbial nail in Weston’s coffin.
Were it not for Robinson’s play, who ended the night with 19 points, the story line would have been about Mallory Tolar’s determination all game and especially her play down the stretch in an effort to see her final season at Weston continue. Early in the contest it was her three pointer that boosted Weston to a 7-0 start that led to an 11-4 first quarter advantage. Over the next two quarters she stood her ground to take three hard charges that helped keep Pitkin at bay, who started the game by missing nine of ten three pointers before making six of their last seven. Then in a span of thirty seconds Tolar, who finished with 11 points, made two free throws and a strong driving layup to give Weston a 61-60 lead with just 1:18 to go.
Emma Kate Toms, Lakerria Austin and Briley Peterson, who scored 15, 14 and 11 points respectively to give Weston four players in double figures for one of the few times all year, also came up big for Weston. It was the crafty, ball-handling McBride that led the way early with all but three of her points in the first half on several strong drives to pace Weston to a 28-24 halftime lead. In the third quarter it was Austin, who made five of six free throws on the night, sinking four baskets early in the quarter and Peterson, whose game is way ahead of her 8th grade status, taking over late in the frame with six of her points that gave Weston what seemed like a commanding 52-46 lead with only a quarter to play.
Photos by Kristie Tolar:
#15 Weston (13-15)
#18 Pitkin (9-14
WHS scoring: McBride 15, Austin 14, Peterson 12, Tolar 11, Hay 5, Bond 2, Trosclair 2 PHS scoring; Robinson 19, McAlister 13, Nolen 10, Perkins 9, Thompson 7, Nelson 3
Bell City to play Quitman in regional round
The Bell City Lady Bears, seeded #13 in the Class B playoffs beat #20 Negreet 46-38 this past Saturday afternoon to earn the right to make the long trip from Lake Charles to Quitman to face the #4 seed Lady Wolverines in a contest that is tentatively set for Tuesday, February 22nd.
Bell City enters the contest with a 15-7 record and hails from district 7B which is the home #1 ranked Hathaway, #6 Lacassine and #7 Midland giving it honors as the strongest overall district in Class B. By virtue of their lofty seeding after their stellar 23-2 season, the Lady Wolverines, who were the undefeated champions of district 2B, drew a first round bye
When Quintus Ennius said “Amicus certus in re incerta cerniturin” in the Latin language that was predominant in the 3rd century BC, he coined one of the most famous and widely used phases known to mankind. It’s meaning is that a sure friend is identified or recognized when there is a difficulty. It is translated in English as “A friend in need is a friend indeed.” Those using “modern” jargon simply say “That is good lookin’ out.”
However you want to say it top officials from the Jackson Parish Police Jury (JPPJ), Jonesboro Police Department (JPD) and Jonesboro Fire Department (JFD) along with volunteers from each and the Jackson Parish Sheriff’s Office, provided a real life example of what the phrase means this past Saturday.
Police Jury President, Amy Magee, Jonesboro Police Department Chief, James “Spike” Harris and Assistant Chief, Ciera Murphy as well as Jonesboro Fire Chief, Brandon Brown and Assistant Chief, Aaron Blalock were all on hand to help load case after case of water into the vehicles of those suffering through the extended water outage that resulted from the brutal winter weather causing water lines to burst all over the area.
“As soon as a state of emergency was declared we immediately got it arranged through the Office of Emergency Preparedness (OEP) to have 12 pallets of water delivered to us,” said JPPJ President Magee. “We are all in the same boat. Being without water makes things difficult for everyone and we just wanted to help as best we can.”
JPD Chief Harris echoed the sentiments. “I know for a fact that the Water Department crews have been working round the clock to get things fixed and soon this will all just be a bad memory,” said Harris. “Until then we recognize that a lot of people are suffering and need help.”
Perhaps the greatest sacrifice of all came from JFD Chief Brown. Not only was he using his brawn to load cases of water into the cars on Saturday but was doing so after virtually having no sleep over the several days before while assisting his parents who both were injured when their back porch caved in from the weight of the snow and ice.
In times of crisis like this it is common for public officials to give statements about what is being done to rectify a situation. It is rare indeed though that those in “high places” actually put their boots on and physically do something to help. That is what you call leading by example!