COLUMBIA CITY â€” Columbia City resident Gary Fouts and his siblings did as many children do around the holidays while growing up in the 1960s: They wrote letters.
Theirs, however, were not to Santa Claus.
Gary, then 13, his brother Melvin, 14, sisters Jane Ann, 12 and Bonnie, 5, instead sent their holiday greetings to the White House; more specifically, to the 36th President of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson.
â€śWe sent them every year when we were kids,â€ť said Fouts.
Evelyn M. (Gipe) Schinbeckler-Tolliver, 93, formerly of Lake Wawasee, Syracuse, passed away at 3:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 23, 2011, at St. Anne Home and Retirement Community, Fort Wayne where she resided for the past seven years.
Born July 24, 1918, on the Gipe family farm, at Ind. 9 and CR 500 N. in Thorncreek Township, she was the oldest child of seven children to Earl E. and Zora S. (Shock) Gipe-Hodson.
MIDDLEBURY â€” Col-umbia Cityâ€™s girls basketball team finished its holiday tournament at Northridge Wednesday with a win over Andrean and a loss to Homestead.
The Lady Eagles started the day against the 0-12 Andrean 59ers, winning 61-15 over a young team.
â€śThey had a lot of girls decide not to play at the last minute,â€ť Columbia City Head Coach Amy Shearer said. â€śTheyâ€™re playing a lot of young girls and theyâ€™re working hard.â€ť
A brass trio serenaded in the Columbia City area on Christmas Eve Eve, last Friday. Above, the trio plays a Christmas selection at the residence of Colleen Ward on Wallace Avenue to the delight of neighborhood adults and children. The musicians are, from left, Todd Ward, Matt Murdock and Brandon Drew. They made several stops in Columbia City, Tri-Lakes, and Fort Wayne.
COLUMBIA CITY â€” The next step in a proposed utility rate increase was taken last week when the Columbia City Common Council approved the application for a new water rate filing.
The rate increase was initially discussed in September after a one and one-half year study showed that sales volumes are down more than 10 percent since the last increase in 2006.
In 2007, projections for water usage were made and those projections have not been met.
According to Mayor Jim Fleck, there was an anticipated growth expectancy of two percent a year and growth simply stopped.
COLUMBIA CITY â€” For five of the last six years, Tom Rethlake has served as chairman for the Whitley County Board of Commissioners.
Rethlake has announced he will be stepping down from the position.
He will remain on the board as a commissioner.
Commissioner Don Amber will take over the duties as chairman.
According to Rethlake, the county has a policy that a chairman generally only serves for two years at a time.
Isabel I. Kitson-Bishop, 90, of Columbia City, passed away at 10:28 a.m. Monday, Dec. 26, 2011, at her home.
Born Oct. 7, 1921, in St. Joseph County, she was the daughter of Marvin and Pearl (Enders) Odiorne.
She spent her childhood in St. Joseph County. On March 10, 1942, she married Monroe Kitson, in Goshen. She and her husband raised their family on a farm near Tri-Lakes where they resided for many years before moving to Columbia City.
Dennis Crampton, 64, formerly of Columbia City, died Friday, Dec. 16, 2011 in San Diego.
He was born in Fort Wayne Sept. 14, 1947.
He grew up in the Tri-Lakes area near Columbia City and enjoyed swimming, boating, fishing, baseball, and track.
He graduated high school at Columbia City Joint High School in 1965, and from Purdue University in 1971 with a degree in electrical engineering.
Donna Rae Himelick, 83, of South Whitley, fell asleep in death on Monday, Dec. 26, 2011.
She is survived by her five children, Ricky J. (Diana) Kuckuck, Trudy R. (Richard) Shirey, both of South Whitley, Jan A (Marianne) Kuckuck of Columbia City, Valerie A Roebuck of Houston, April L (Richard) Gerisch of Niles Mich.; two brothers, Gay (Rosalie) Smith, G. Lee Smith, 14 grandchildren, three step-grandchildren, five great-grandchildren and three stepgreat-grandchildren.
Children at St. Paul of the Cross Catholic Church pose for the camera in advance of their program on Christmas Eve, presented Saturday afternoon.