JHHS grad Kelton Moss helping to change culture at UTEP

As a young boy growing up in Jonesboro Kelton Moss used to follow local colleges Louisiana Tech and University of Louisiana – Monroe games and dream about playing college football. This past month the 2017 Jonesboro-Hodge graduate lined up against both as the starting defensive tackle for the University of Texas-El Paso.

While it is incredibly impressive for a young man from a small school in north Louisiana to be playing on national television (ESPN televised the games) in a Division One collegiate setting it is nothing compared to the dedication and commitment it took for Moss to be on such a stage.

Flashback to November 24th, 2017. The Tigers had just lost to eventual Class A state champion West St. John in the quarterfinals of the state playoffs. As Moss was walking off the rain soaked field the reality that the season was over started to sink in. There was also another realization that him like a ton of bricks. His high school football career was now finished as well.

It was a bitter pill to swallow. Was this the end of his football playing days? Moss certainly wanted to continue following his dream of playing at the next level but no colleges had called despite the fact that he had average over 10 tackles a game (138 in 13 games) and was named All-State.

“When it hit me that my high school career I was sad but I thought that I had a good enough season that some college would call with an offer,” said Moss in a recent interview with the Jackson Parish Journal. “First I was like I would like to go here or there. Then as time went by it was like I didn’t care who called, I just wanted a chance to keep playing.”

Day after day Moss waited on the phone to ring with the news he was so desperately waiting to hear, but it never came. It wasn’t because people behind the scenes weren’t working to try and make his dream a reality, especially his former head coach Terrance Blankenship.

“I called every coach I knew” reflected Blankenship. “Kelton had a special kind of character about him. He was a natural leader and I knew that if someone gave him a shot he would make it. He just needed someone to believe in him.”

Finally the phone rang. Only it wasn’t a college coach on the other end but former JHHS teammate and friend Trayvon Calahan who had gone through the same thing when he graduated but found a home at Kilgore Junior College.

“If it wasn’t for Trayvon calling me I don’t know what would have happened,” said Moss. “I’m so glad he talked me into coming there and check it out. “

What Moss found out was that Kilgore College football wasn’t just any run of the mill junior college program but one of the best in the country. The coaches were demanding and the talent he was competing against was much better than he anticipated.

“I remember after my first practice wondering if I really wanted this,” said Moss laughingly. “Man it was tough. They coached us HARD and the competition for playing time was incredible. I knew though if I was willing to give it all I had that I could do this.”

So he went to work. By the end of his Freshman year that saw Kilgore win the 2018 Southwest Junior College Football Conference (SWJCFC) and the Heart of Texas Bowl game he was an integral part of the defensive line recording 52 tackles (30 solo), 3 sacks (23 yards), 3 forced fumbles and an interception.

His sophomore campaign he registered 59 tackles (36 solo), 9 TFL (23 yards), five sacks and three forced fumbles. At the end of the year Moss was named to the National Junior College All-American (NJCAA) Second Team and First Team All SWJCFC.

Unlike the end of his high school career when his days at Kilgore was over it wasn’t a matter of IF he would continue playing but WHERE. After meeting with several college coaches Moss made the decision to continue his career at the University of Texas-El Paso. Why UTEP? After all, the Miners were a perineal “bottom ten” program having won only a handful of games in the last decade.

“Coach (Dana Dimel) said he saw me as being one of the ones who would change the culture here,” said Moss. “That fell right in line with what I was looking for. I wanted to be in a place where I could make an impact for the school just like our class did at Jonesboro-Hodge and we did at Kilgore.”

How has his first year as a Division One player faired? Moss, who wears #7 and now weighs 315 pounds, has started every game for the Miners. He has recorded 14 tackles, 2 tackles for a loss and has a sack. More importantly, just like he did at JHHS and at Kilgore, he has helped UTEP change their culture of losing by going 3-2 in the first five games, including being as perfect 2-0 at home.

Moss has now been a part of three programs that while he was there the culture changed from it was ok to lose to where success was demanded and expected. Can one person be responsible for such dramatic changes in fortune?

“It isn’t and never has been just me that brought about the changes,” said Moss. “I like to think though that I have been a part of making our teams better. I work hard to get better personally and to help make our team better.”

“I was fortunate while I was at J-H to have the coaches I did,” continued Moss. “I owe a lot to Terrance Blankenship, Carlos Hicks, James Garsee and Charles Scott who stayed on me to always believe in myself, work hard every day and be ready to overcome any obstacles or adversity that comes. They made a big impression on me and I hope they are pleased to see I listened to what they preached.”

You can rest assured big man, they are not only pleased but very proud of what you have achieved. It’s not just them either. Everyone from Jonesboro and Hodge is.

PSC Endorses Campbell Plan to Let Electric Co-ops Offer Internet Service

Rural electric cooperatives serving 14 North Louisiana parishes were authorized today by the Louisiana Public Service Commission to enter the internet business and help bridge the digital divide.

“Today the Public Service Commission made a bold statement: we are for rural broadband,” said Foster Campbell, PSC member representing North Louisiana.

Meeting online because of the coronavirus, the five members of the PSC voted unanimously for Campbell’s plan to support internet initiatives by Claiborne Electric in Homer and Northeast Louisiana Power in Winnsboro. The two cooperatives will use federal grants and low-interest loans to offer high-speed internet in rural areas from Webster Parish eastward to the Mississippi River.

“Everyone wants internet service now,” Campbell said. “It’s not a luxury, it’s a necessity.”

Campbell said rural electric cooperatives have for decades served rural residents and businesses, so it’s appropriate that they offer broadband as well.

“During the New Deal the big electric companies didn’t want to bring power to rural areas, so President Roosevelt created electric co-ops and the government helped them get established,” he said. The cooperatives paid back the government assistance and now offer some of the cheapest electricity in the country.

“We’re going to use that successful business model – targeted federal investment – to deliver broadband to areas that have few other options,” Campbell said.

Federal agencies are expected to distribute more than $600 million in Louisiana over the next 10 years as grants to expand high-speed internet service.

“These are our tax dollars,” Campbell said. “Few public needs are as vital now as broadband access, so we should capture these dollars for Louisiana and bring internet benefits to education, health care and business.”

The two Louisiana co-ops are part of a trend across the country of New Deal-era power cooperatives offering broadband. Campbell said North Louisiana has more areas without good internet service than many other regions.

The PSC vote means the two cooperatives can create internet subsidiaries that will seek government grants and low-interest loans to bring fiber-optic and wireless broadband service to members and non-members in their coverage areas. Commissioners said other co-ops in Louisiana may follow suit.


Symptoms and Signs of Breast Cancer

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Throughout this month the Jackson Parish Hospital is providing important information about breast cancer, including lifestyle related risk factors and how to get treatment and/or support.

Whether you or a loved one are worried about developing breast cancer, have just been diagnosed, are going through breast cancer treatment, or are trying to stay well after treatment this detailed information can help you find the answers you need.

Every person should know the symptoms and signs of breast cancer, and any time an abnormality is discovered, it should be investigated by a healthcare professional. Most people who have breast cancer symptoms and signs will initially notice only one or two and the presence of these symptoms and signs do not automatically mean that you have breast cancer. By performing monthly breast self-exams, you will be able to more easily identify any changes in your breast. 

The following are signs of possibly having breast cancer:

  1. A change in how the breast or nipple looks or feels.
  2. Nipple tenderness or a lump or thickening in or near the breast or underarm area.
  3. A change in the skin texture or an enlargement of pores in the skin of the breast. (some describe this as similar to an orange peel’s texture)
  4. A lump in the breast. (It’s important to remember that all lumps should be investigated by a healthcare professional, but not all lumps are cancerous.
  5. Any unexplained change in the size or shape of the breast.
  6. Dimpling anywhere on the breast.
  7. Unexplained swelling of the breast. (especially if on one side only)
  8. Unexplained shrinkage of the breast. (especially if on one side only)
  9. Recent asymmetry (unequal or lack of sameness) of the breasts. Although it is common for women to have one breast that is slightly larger than the other, if the onset of asymmetry is recent, it should be checked.
  10. Nipple that is turned slightly inward or inverted.

If you have any questions or concerns please contact the Jackson Parish Hospital at 318-259-4435.


McCallum the clear choice, record speaks for itself

McCallum is currently on the Louisiana Second Circuit Court of Appeal. Before that, he served as a judge of the Third Judicial District (Lincoln and Union Parishes). Prior to being elected judge, he served as an Assistant District Attorney for the Third Judicial District, and as a member of the Louisiana House of Representatives (1992-2002).

As the only candidate who has rendered decisions as a trial court judge, McCallum is uniquely qualified to be our next Supreme Court Justice given that the job requires reviewing other judge’s decisions.

To be fair, how can someone grade the decisions of others if they have no experience making those decisions? In order to do the job and to be fair in the decisions a Supreme Court Justice is asked to make, that person should have experience in making those decisions. McCallum is the only candidate in the Louisiana Supreme Court race who has presided over trials and sentenced criminals.

McCallum has also been endorsed by the PACs of the Associated General Contractors, Louisiana Association of Business and Industry, Louisiana Oil & Gas Association, the Louisiana Home Builders Association, and the Associated Builders and Contractors. These PACs represent thousands of members and workers who have endorsed Judge McCallum because of his record of fairness.

McCallum is the only candidate in the Louisiana Supreme Court race who has a pro-life, pro-second amendment, pro-family record as a legislator who co-authored NRA legislation supported by Charlton Heston and Wayne Lapierre.

Again, he is the only candidate who has experience as a Prosecutor, a State Representative, a District Court Judge, and a Court of Appeal Judge. McCallum has the most judicial experience in the race for Louisiana Supreme Court with 18 years as a judge and the most legal experience with 35 years as an attorney.

Because of his record of working with law enforcement to help keep our families and communities safe, McCallum has the law enforcement endorsement of Sheriffs, retired Sheriffs, District Attorneys, retired District Attorneys, Chiefs of Police and retired Chiefs of Police from 15 of the 20 parishes that comprise the Supreme Court district:

Sheriff John Ballance, Bienville Parish; District Attorney John Belton, 3rd JD; Chief of Police Andre Benson, Junction City; Sheriff Clay Bennett, Caldwell Parish; Sheriff Andy Brown, Jackson Parish; Chief of Police Joe Bryan, Spearsville; Sheriff Sammie Byrd, Madison Parish; Chief of Police Tommy Clark, Grambling; Sheriff Kevin Cobb, Franklin Parish; Chief of Police Bim Coulberston, Farmerville; Chief of Police Mark Dodd, Marion; District Attorney Penny Douciere, 5th JD; Chief of Police Don Dufour, Dubach; District Attorney Brian Frazier, 37th JD; Chief of Police Sandy Freeman, Simsboro;Sheriff Dusty Gates, Union Parish; Sheriff Gary Gilley, Richland Parish; Chief of Police Randal Hermes, Louisiana Tech; Chief of Police Eddie Horton, Bernice; Ret. Sheriff Wayne Houck, Lincoln Parish; Sheriff Rickey Jones, Tensas Parish; Sheriff Cranford Jordan, Winn Parish; Ret. District Attorney Mack Lancaster, 5th JD; Sheriff Scott Mathews, West Carroll Parish; Ret. Sheriff Steve May, Caldwell Parish; Chief of Police Van McDaniel, Homer; Chief of Police Jerry Melton, Grambling University; Chief of Police Bobby J. Milner, Choudrant; District Attorney Chris Nevils, 8th JD; District Attorney Danny Newell, 2nd JD; Sheriff Jason Parker, Webster Parish; Ret. Chief of Police Minor Patton, Bernice; District Attorney Jimbo Paxton, 6th JD; Ret. Sheriff Jerry Philley, West Carroll Parish; Chief of Police Earl Roberts, Downsville; Sheriff Jay Russell, Ouachita Parish; Chief of Police Lewis B. Russell, Oak Grove; Ret. Sheriff Gary Sexton, Webster Parish; Ret. Sheriff Mike Stone, Lincoln Parish; District Attorney Steve Tew, 4th JD; Sheriff Mike Tubbs, Morehouse Parish; Ret. Sheriff Ken Volentine, Claiborne Parish; Sheriff Stephen Williams, Lincoln Parish; Sheriff Wydette Williams, East Carroll Parish.

Early voting begins Friday, Oct 16 and goes through Oct 27, 2020 with Election Day Nov 3

Poltical AdPaid for by the McCallum Campaign

Jackson Parish Police Jury declares Saturday, October 17th as Volunteer Appreciation Day

It has never happened in Jackson Parish before and hopefully won’t again. A little over six weeks the area residents received their first ever experience of having a storm of hurricane strength rip through the area causing an incredible amount of damage and even claiming a life.

As soon as it was safe to do so recovery efforts went into motion. The result was a tremendous collective effort from not only every local village, town and parish public organizations but also numerous businesses and individuals.

In an effort to show their appreciation board members Amy Magee, Todd Culpepper, Lewis Chatham, John McCarty, Regina Rowe, Tarneshala (Niki) Cowans and Lynn Treadway presented Certificates of Appreciation  and declared Saturday, October 17th Volunteer Appreciation Day at the regularly scheduled October Jackson Parish Police Jury meeting.

Those receiving the Certificates of Appreciation were:

Town of Chatham
Chatham Police Department
Village of East Hodge
East Hodge Police Department
Town of Eros
Eros Police Department
Village of Hodge
Hodge Police Department
Hodge Fire Department District 1
Town of Jonesboro
Jonesboro Fire Department
Jonesboro Police Department
Jonesboro Fire Department District 1
Village of North Hodge
North Hodge Police Department
Village of Quitman
Quitman Police Department
Quitman Fire Department District 1
District 2 Fire Department
District 3 Fire Department
District 4 Fire Department
Jackson Parish Sheriff’s Office
Ambulance Service District
Jackson Parish Police Jury OEP Department, Mr. Mark Treadway
Jackson Parish Police Jury Road Department
Jackson Parish Police Jury Solid Waste Department
Jackson Parish Police Jury Maintenance Department
Jackson Parish Police Jury Administration Department
National Guard
Shreveport National Weather Service
State Fire Marshall’s Office
Region 8 GOHSEP
National Guard
Senator Jay Morris
Representative Jack McFarland
McCartney Oil
Reed Plumbing

Police Jury President Amy Magee also read aloud the Proclamation below for Volunteer Appreciation Day in recognition of the Jackson Parish businesses, houses of worship, and citizen volunteers:

WHEREAS, Since the early days of our nation, volunteers have played a vital role in our greatest challenges and triumphs. Volunteer service, whether in times of war or peace is integral in addressing community issues and helps to unite us around a common purpose while still addressing critical needs.

WHEREAS, Hurricane Laura made landfall near Cameron, Louisiana on Thursday, August 27, 2020; and in her aftermath, the residents of Jackson Parish found their communities in a ‘state of emergency’. The health and well-being of our families, friends, and neighbors which are critical to the continued vitality and prosperity of our parish was threatened.

WHEREAS, our Houses of Worship, our local businesses and our citizens have been dedicated to enriching our towns and villages for decades and have worked hard to make Jackson Parish a better place for everyone. These individuals understand that citizen volunteers are critical to the community.

WHEREAS, the residents of Jackson Parish were able to depend on these volunteers to use their unique knowledge and awareness of the needs in their communities to combine their assets and resources to render an invaluable service during the Jackson Parish Recovery.

WHEREAS, these selfless volunteers were comprised of our businesses, our faith-based organizations, and our citizens they demonstrated commitment through their tireless service. They showed compassion by providing for their neighbors and friends and dedication through passionate involvement and contributions to the overall success of the Jackson Parish Recovery.

WHEREAS, it is important to recognize those who give of themselves for the betterment of their communities, the Jackson Parish Police Jury considers it necessary and proper to highlight those individuals from our businesses, Houses of Worship and citizens for their unwavering support during this critical time.

THEREFORE, the Jackson Parish Police Jury has set aside a day for citizen volunteer service to honor these volunteers, “who through their shared commitment to community service” ,encourage hope, promote benevolence, demonstrate compassion, and strengthen bonds in the Jackson Parish Community. We call upon the citizens of Jackson Parish, as you engage in your activities of service, to use your knowledge, skills, ideas, and creativity to honor, advocate for, and bring awareness to Volunteerism.





Jonesboro Assistant Police Chief Ciera Murphy presented life saver award

She was just doing her job. At least that is the way Jonesboro Assistant Police Chief Ciera Murphy thinks. Jonesboro Mayor Leslie Thompson and the Board of Aldermen thinks differently though and that is why she received a special life savers award at the city council meeting this past Tuesday evening. They felt she went above and beyond her duty and as result saved a man’s life.

The award stems from what took place on August 13th when Murphy responded to a shooting at the Jackson Square Apartments. Upon arriving she saw a trail of blood leading to an upstairs domicile. Murphy entered the apartment and saw a man lying on the floor with blood pouring out of his upper leg.

“The way the blood was pumping out it was obvious that the shot had hit the major artery in his leg and I had to get the blood flow stopped or I knew he would soon bleed out,” said Murphy recalling the event. “I saw a shirt nearby, grabbed it up and made a make-shift tourniquet which I applied above the wound.”

Within minutes additional Jonesboro Police Officers, Jackson Parish Sheriff’s Office Deputies and Emergency Responders with the Ambulance Service arrived, secured the area and stabilized the victim who eventually made a full recovery.

“There is no question that Assistant Chief Murphy saved this young man’s life,” said Jonesboro Police Chief James “Spike” Harris who did the honors of giving Murphy the award. “It is a true blessing to have someone with her knowledge and capability on our force.”


The Jackson Parish Journal is pleased to offer a Classifieds section where you can make announcements, post items for sale, offer job opportunities or professional services and review public notices. Cost per post is $10.00 per week and can be submitted by email at jpjjacksonla@gmail.com or by text to 318-480-1206.

For Sale:

5.06 acres of land (Price Reduced) – located one mile East of Jimmie Davis Tabernacle on Hwy. 542, Beech Springs Road, Quitman, LA.  Call (706)745-3933 for more information.  

Facemasks – Show your school pride with special designed cloth facemasks for Jonesboro-Hodge, Quitman, Weston, LA Tech, Grambling, ULM, LSU and the New Orleans Saints. You can even add personal monograms. Adult and children sizes available. Only $5.00-$7.00.Call 318-475-0349

Church Bus – Jonesboro-Hodge United Methodist Church is selling small Bus that is equipped with Handicap accessibility. Engine work needed. Contact Paul Sterns for more information at (360) 399-8347.  

Book for sale – “The 100 year history of JHHS football” – An in-depth, year by year review of each season that includes names of players from virtually every year and individual/school records. Cost is $25.00 per copy plus $3.00 shipping and handling. To place your order, call 318-480-1206.



Jackson Parish Police Jury Business Session Minutes from October 5th, 2020

The Jackson Parish Police Jury met in Business Session Monday, October 5, 2020 at 5:15 PM at the Dr. Charles H. Garrett Community Center, Jonesboro, Louisiana. Members present: Mr. Todd Culpepper, Mr. Lewis Chatham, Ms. Amy Magee, Mr. John McCarty, and Mr. Lynn Treadway. Absent: Ms. Tarneshala Cowans and Ms. Regina Rowe.

The meeting was called to order by the President, Ms. Magee. Mr. McCarty gave the invocation and Mr. Treadway led in the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.

The President opened the floor for public comments.

Ms. Carol Massey, President of the Library Board stated that the Library Board had met and voted unanimously in opposition of rededicating their surplus funds to the Solid Waste Department. She stated that they were developing a 10-year plan and discussed some of the projects.

With the conclusion of public comments, the President called for the review of the 2019 Audit Exit Interview. The Secretary-Treasurer reviewed the results of the 2019 Audit and discussed the audit finding for the road program and the management notes for the financial close procedures and for the surplus balance in the Library Fund. She detailed the recommendations to clear the items.

The President called for Committee Reports.

Ms. Magee, Chairman of the Operations Committee, provided a summary of the September 23rd meeting. Ms. Magee invited Mr. Glen Kirkland, Tax Assessor, to give the Jury information and an approximate valuation on proposing a new millage for the Solid Waste Department. The Secretary-Treasurer provided the timeline for a tax election.

The Jury discussed proposing an election to the public to rededicate the surplus balance in the Library fund to the Solid Waste fund.

The Jury discussed cleaning up the Pardue Loop property and Mr. Chatham gave a report on having the State Department burn the debris to clear the land.

The Jury discussed authorizing limited overtime, as needed, for the Solid Waste grinding crew to grind and clear storm debris from the landfill.

The Jury discussed the options for purchasing the property adjacent to the landfill to increase the landfill capacity.

The Jury discussed the need for a larger boom truck for the Solid Waste department. Ms. Magee stated that there was a possibility to get grant funding for the equipment since it was needed during the storm recovery.

The Jury reviewed the Committee recommendations for Bob Watkins, Bryant, Fails, Folks, Go Thru, Into, Palmer, Preacher Martin, Thunder, and Womack-Otwell Roads. No changes were made to the recommendations.

Mr. Culpepper, Chairman of the Finance Committee, provided a summary of the September 24 th meeting.

The Jury discussed the monthly financials, the Weather Event checklist, the Village of East Hodge request, and reviewed the budget amendments.

Ms. Magee gave a summary of the meeting with Mayor Mims that the Committee had requested.

The Committee reviewed the estimates for the Coroner’s office a/c unit.

The Secretary-Treasurer reviewed the recommended budget amendments.

The President reviewed the assignments of the Policy & Personnel, Veteran’s, Project, Economic Development, and Parish Cleanup Committees. Mr. Chatham stated that the Veteran’s Committee had not met in October. Ms. Magee notified the Jury that the Project Committee would meet on Wednesday, October 7th

With the conclusion of Committee Reports, the President moved on to Continued Business.

The Jury reviewed the status of committee assignments.

The Jury reviewed the nominees and actions needed for parish board appointments.

The President moved to New Business.

The Jury reviewed the Subdivision Ordinance. Mr. Culpepper gave a summary on an issue with the ordinance. The Jury asked Mr. Paul Riley to review the issue and present it to the Operations Committee.

The President opened the floor for discussion of other topics.

The Jury reviewed the Proclamation to be presented at the Regular Meeting.

The President opened the floor for announcements and notifications.

Motion Mr. Culpepper, seconded Mr. Chatham to adjourn. Motion carried.

Jackson Parish Police Jury Project Committee Meeting Minutes

October 7, 2020

The Project Committee met Wednesday, October 7, 2020 at 12:00 PM in the Police Jury Meeting Room of the Jackson Parish Courthouse, 500 E. Court Street, Room 301, Jonesboro, Louisiana. Members present: Mr. Todd Culpepper, Ms. Amy Magee, and Ms. Regina Rowe. Absent: none.

Also present, Hospital COO Jason Thomas, and Parish Engineer Paul Riley.

The meeting was called to order by the Chair, Ms. Rowe. Mr. Culpepper gave the invocation and Ms. Magee led in the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.

There were no public comments.

The Committee reviewed the letter of acceptance from Mr. Simmons for the offer to purchase 9.9 acres behind the Jackson Parish Hospital at the appraised value of $44,550 and all closing costs, including, but not limited to costs of preparation of the deed, Act of Partial Release to be executed by the lender, Iberia Bank, and recording costs.

The Committee reviewed the Hospital Boards intention to bare half of the cost of the appraised value. Mr. Riley stated that they would need to get an updated survey and description of the property. Motion Mr. Culpepper, seconded Ms. Magee to recommend the Jury purchase the land at the appraised value, authorize acquiring a new survey and description of the property, and authorize the President to execute a Cooperative Endeavor Agreement with the Jackson Parish Hospital to split the cost of the land. Motion carried.

The Committee discussed the final plans for the new building on Industrial Drive. They discussed names for the building and meeting rooms, department relocations, security, and additional uses for the building.

Mr. Culpepper proposed naming the Jury Meeting Room the “Nathanial Zeno Meeting Room”.

Ms. Magee proposed building a fenced area for storage for OEP equipment.

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


Jackson Parish Recreation District Board Meeting Minutes

September 21, 2020

The Jackson Parish Recreation District met in regular session on Monday, September 21, 2020 at 12:00 noon in the Dr. Charles H. Garrett Community Center, 182 Industrial Drive, Jonesboro, Louisiana. Members Present: Mr. Brent Barnett, Mr. Ricky Cash, Mr. Jeff Hairston, Mr. Brandon Lamkin, Mr. Rodney Potts, Mr. Sullivan Stevens and Mr. Chris Womack.

The President, Mr. Barnett, called the meeting to order. The invocation was given by Mr. Cash and Mr. Barnett led the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.

Mr. Barnett opened the floor for public comments.

Mr. Freddy Tolar commented on the land purchase made at the golf course at the previous board meeting and suggested going up on the fees to support the purchase. Mrs. Anita Waggoner thanked everyone for moving forward with getting the outdoor pavilion. Mr. Barnett moved on to the next item on the agenda.

Motion Mr. Hairston seconded Mr. Cash to approve minutes and financials (August). All in favor. Motion carried.

Mr. Tommy Smith gave board update on some of the ongoing programs at the sports complex including Fall baseball/softball, flag football, soccer, archery and the fitness trail. He also gave the board an update on the storm damages.

Ms. Rebecca Williams gave board update on the golf course including membership and banquet rentals.

Motion Mr. Hairston seconded Mr. Womack to authorize Steven Gatlin, attorney, to contact Weyerhaeuser about land purchase and perform title examination on property for 2021 budget year. Motion carried with a vote of 6 years and 1 nay.

Under old business, the board discussed money the Police Jury and State may have to help with the construction of the outdoor pavilion.

Motion Mr. Barnett seconded Mr. Lamkin to approve $100,000 Certificate of Deposit at Peoples Bank in Chatham. All in favor. Motion carried.

Next board meeting is scheduled for Monday, October 19, 2020 at 12:00 noon at the Dr. Charles H. Garrett Community Center, Jonesboro.

Motion Mr. Potts seconded Mr. Cash to adjourn meeting. All in favor. Motion carried.

JHHS and Loyola College Prep has been cancelled

Due to the expected weather conditions resulting from Hurricane Delta passing through North Louisiana this Friday evening the football game between JHHS and Loyola College Prep has been cancelled.

“I hate we had to do this but in the best interest of being safe we felt we had no other choice than to cancel the game,” said JH head coach Terrance Blankenship. “We tried to get the game moved to Thursday but the Loyola coach said that wasn’t possible.”

“The eye of the hurricane is expected to be passing near Jonesboro around 10:00 pm Friday night,” continued Blankenship. “That means we would have been on the road coming back from Shreveport in what could be severe and very dangerous conditions. Plus people would have had to get out in the storm to pick up their kids. It was simply to much of a risk to take.”

The contest will not be re-scheduled.

Laura leaves lasting legacy!

One dead, thousands without power

Jackson Parish has endured many natural disasters over the years such as fires, floods and tornadoes but never before have residents had to deal with what took place this past Thursday. That is when Hurricane Laura tore through the area leaving a mind blowing wake of destruction that left the entire parish without power, many without water, forced the closures of almost every major artery. Worst of all was a death caused when a tree fell on a mobile home.

“We are still assessing the damage but I can say that from what I know right now this is going to go down as one of the worst natural disasters we have ever had to endure,” said long time Jackson Parish Police Jury Road Superintended Jody Stuckey just a few hours after the storm passed.

Jackson Parish Sheriff Andy Brown was in agreement.

“In the 30 years that I have served Jackson Parish there have been many times I have seen certain areas of the parish receive terrible damage as the result of storms, tornadoes or floods,” said Brown. “I have never seen the entire parish be affected this bad. There was not one single road that I traveled on that there wasn’t a tree across it.”

Storm claims life of John Holland

The worst effect of all was when John Holland, who resided Ayers Loop which is located east of Jonesboro off of Hwy 4 East was killed when a tree fell through his mobile home. He was 51 years old. It is one of four fatalities across the state attributed to trees falling on homes with the others being in Acadia and Vernon Parishes. Two additional deaths were also reported in south Louisiana. One was from carbon monoxide poisoning when a person used a generator inside of his home and another who drowned when his boat was capsized.

Strongest hurricane ever to make landfall in state!

According to Governor Jon Bel Edwards during his Thursday afternoon press conference Laura is the strongest hurricanes ever to make landfall in Louisiana in modern history. The Category 4 storm with roaring winds of 150 miles an hour came ashore near Cameron, LA riding a 9-12 foot storm surge which caused devastating flooding took place along the coastline. Hurricane force winds stayed in place until the storm was nearly into Arkansas.

Devastating local effect!

Continuous heavy downpours and wind gusts that gradually became stronger until the eye passed west

of Jonesboro around 1:00 pm wreaked total havoc. By early afternoon all power in the parish had been knocked out and virtually every road was impassable due to trees falling. Water pumping issues then surfaced leaving residents having to endure the night without electricity and water. Later attempts by residents to purchase gasoline, food or supplies were futile as almost all businesses were forced to close.

Quick response!

The carnage was incredible. As soon as it became safe to react though the process of restoring power and services as well as clearing roads began. This is mainly due to the astute planning by state and local officials along with the Emergency Preparedness Response Team of Jackson Parish led by director Mark Treadway as electrical and tree cutting crews from surrounding states and neighboring parishes had already been stationed in the area in preparation of the damage caused.

Local residents played a big part in the restoration as well. Dedicated employees from the each town or village in the parish, area Fire Departments, crews from the Jackson Parish Police Jury and a score of private citizens pitched in to help their neighbors As of press date there was still no exact date or time as to when to expect energy services to be restored. Residents are advised to go to the Energy.com website for updates.

National Guard comes to aid of those in need!

On Friday the National Guard was stationed at the Delta Community College complex located on Industrial Drive in Jonesboro just off of Hwy 167 South as they handed out MRE’s and water to those in need.

Friday traffic accident indirectly caused by storm

Emergency response teams were called to the scene of an accident involving an 18 wheeler and a vehicle Friday morning. The location was at the intersection of Cooper Avenue and Jimmie Davis Boulevard. No further information was available at time of press but it is known that an Air Ambulance was called in to transport one of the victims. The red-light at that intersection was not working due to damages caused by the Hurricane.

Sheriff Brown urges residents to be safe

“You can replace material things but a lost life is never recoverable. I am deeply saddened for the family of John Holland and our prayers go out to the family,” said Brown. “I am also thankful to God for sparing us from what could have been possibly many more lives lost or people injured. Many trees came down that if they had fallen in the other direction would have destroyed homes and possibly injured or killed many others.”

“I urge our residents to realize that we have experienced a major natural disaster. Please be safe in what you do,” continued Brown. “If you don’t have to travel, please stay off the roads. Power lines are down

all over the parish and many are still not cleared completely. Stay home and stay safe.”


Sheriff Browns message on the Governors Mandate for face coverings

The proclamation issued on July 11, 2020, has caused confusion as to who enforces this mandate.

I have received inquires from residents and business owners alike as to whether they can expect a citation or arrest for failing to abide by the new rule.

The Jackson Parish Sheriff’s Office will only become involved if a customer refuses to leave a place of business after requested to do so by management, churches are exempt from enforcement of this rule.

We do not intend to enforce this face mask mandate, but keep in mind the businesses you visit do have a right not to serve you, and ask you to leave.

Louisiana Revised Statue 14:63.3 details the law “Entry on or remaining in places or on Land after being forbidden”.

According to section 5 of the Governor’s order, legal enforcement responsibility lies with the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness as well as the State Fire Marshall, and all complaints should be directed to those agencies. Please do not call 911 and tie up the emergency services in Jackson Parish for this type complaint.

Jackson Parish Sheriff’s Office urges all citizens to respect the concerns and health of vulnerable members of our community including the elderly. Some may not have the luxury of constantly being able to stay home and must obtain groceries and other services. If not for yourself, please be considerate of them.

If you are 65 years or older and a resident of the Parish, the Jackson Parish Sheriff’s Office will be glad to assist you by picking up groceries and other needs for you.

You can call 318-259-9021 if you need this assistance, or would like to speak with me.

Sheriff Andy Brown

PRESS RELEASE: July 14, 2020

Jonesboro Board of Aldermen Agenda announced

On April 21st at 6:00 pm the Board of Aldermen for the town of Jonesboro held a specially called conference call meeting to discuss items on the April monthly meeting agenda. Most importantly were three resolutions that were proposed by Mayor Leslie Thompson for the council of Devin Flowers, Pete Stringer, Robbie Siadek, James Ginn and Nita Evans to approve.

These resolutions can be clicked on below for full details but to summarize they are as listed:

1. Resolution 2020-020: Declare a state of public health emergency for the Town of Jonesboro

2. Resolution 2020-021: Declare that the Town of Jonesboro employees that haven’t worked since Stay at Home Order was enforced be paid for their time off through FEMA.

3. Resolution 2020-022: Declare that Denmon Engineering be hired to clear and remove obstructions from Jonesboro Airport.

Additional items to be considered are the Midwest Settlement regarding the sale of a piece of property owned by the Town of Jonesboro that was contested, the approval to have a mobile home on 7th street, and the sale of surplus items.

Fire, Police and Public Works department head reports were also to be heard and would be asked to be approved as well as February and March bills to be paid. Each member of the Board and Mayor Thompson would give their comments before the close of the meeting. Next week the Jackson Parish Journal will have the results of each of the items listed on the agenda that is shown below.

Coronavirus Update: 36 test positive in Jackson Parish

According to Jackson Parish Sheriff Andy Brown as of April 20th, 2020, Jackson Parish had a total of 36 people who had tested positive for COVID-19. Thankfully no deaths have been reported leaving the parish as one of the least infected of the 64 parishes that have reported to the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH).

The numbers announced are different than the numbers shown by the LDH who shows only 15 cases in Jackson Parish. Statewide the LDH has confirmed 23,928 cases and 1,296 deaths with 7,044 having recovered. Nationwide the count has grown to 794,651 confirmed cases and 42,486 deaths with 71,861 having recovered.

Everyone is still asked to stay home unless it’s essential that you be out. If you have to get out please remember to practice social distancing and follow all other CDC guidelines.


Shreveport Times names LaDamien Bradford as All-Area Player of the Year

The hits just keep on coming…………line from Top Gun

Already this year LaDamien Bradford of Jonesboro-Hodge High School has been named to the boys basketball first team in district 1-2A and in Class AA. Now he has earned the designation as All-Area Player of the Year by the Shreveport Times.

As stated by Jimmy Watson of the Times it is hard to argue with success. Over the last two seasons the Texas A&M signee has led the Tigers to two district titles and a state tournament appearance. This season the 6’4” shooting guard averaged a double-double checking in with 24.5 points per game and 13.3 rebounds while also chipping in 5.5 assists and 3.8 steals.
“LaDamien really stepped up his game the second half of district play,” Tigers coach Allen Tew said. “The team played its best during the last month of the season and the playoffs and that was due not only to LaDamien’s talent, but his leadership and making the young players around him better.”

Joining Bradford on the first team is close friend Chanse Robinson (22.9 ppg, 12.2 rpg) of Lincoln Prep Jakemin Abney (23.8 ppg, 8 rpg) of Simsboro, Devonte Snow (23 ppg. 8 rpg) of Natchitoches-Central, Decari Markray (21.7 ppg, 9.4 rpg) of Doyline, Kenneth Bradley (19.6 ppg) of Red River and Thomas Howell (27.1 ppg, 16.2 rpg) of St. Mary’s in Natchitoches

In an unusual move the Times selected two as Coach of the Year in Michael Normand who led Doyline to a 33-2 record and the Class B state title and Stephen Birch of Pleasant Hill who went 27-9 on the season and played in the Class C title game.

Jackson Parish Chamber of Commerce announces Sunshine Festival postponed indefinitely

The Jackson Parish Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors has made the following decision regarding the Sunshine Festival: Based on the executive decision made yesterday to extend the social distancing until April 30, the festival has been postponed indefinitely. Thank you for your continued support of the chamber and the decisions that are being made regarding our scheduled events and activities.