July 28th, 2012
COLUMBIA CITY - A 15-year-old boy drowned in Troy-Cedar Lake, north of Larwill, early Saturday evening.
According to witnesses, the boy, who was from Fort Wayne, went under when he was playing catch in the water with his friends. The friends said he was not a good swimmer.
The boy reportedly went under water and didn't surface.
Indiana Department of Natural Resources conservation officers, Whitley County Sheriff's deputies and Richland Township Firemen assisted the Thorncreek Township Fire Department's Dive Team in a search that lasted over an hour.
Michael Walter Smith, 66, died on July 23, 2012, at home. He was born in Van Wert, Ohio, later moving to Columbia City. He served two years in U.S. Army.
He worked for Indiana Michigan Power as a draftsman for over 30 years. Later he worked for the City of Columbia City until his retirement.
Surviving relatives include his wife of 44 years, Wanda Smith of Columbia City; two children, Kurt Smith of Fort Wayne and Kami (Nicholas) Hamilton of Fort Wayne; one sister, Connie (Richard) Steinbacher of Fort Wayne and three grandchildren, Jaylen, Andrew and Brooklin.
COLUMBIA CITY â€” With little less than a month to prepare, what was known as Stepping Stones Day Care has closed, moved and will re-open Monday at 6 a.m. as a child care program under the Whitley County YMCA.
Stepping Stones Director Debbie Gates will continue with the YMCAâ€™s program. According to Gates, parents who had utilized the day care that was once housed with First Church of God in Columbia City, were concerned over the idea of not having a childcare program in Columbia City.
COLUMBIA CITY â€” Although continuous rain has provided favorable weather conditions for late July, the end to the drought is far from over.
â€śThe only way we are going to see an end to the drought would be if we have a continuation of the rain on a regular basis,â€ť said David Addison, Purdue Extension Educator, 4-H Youth Development. â€śThe rain we have seen has brought the grass back, but itâ€™s still low.â€ť
Whitley County is currently in an extreme drought, and Southern Indiana is in an exceptional drought, with an average of 15 inches of rain below normal.
SAN DIEGO Ââ€” At 70 years old, Columbia City native, Jody McKinney, graduated from Alliant International University on May 25, receiving a doctorate in educational leadership and management.
She had already earned a masters in administration from San Diego State in 2008 as well as a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Indiana University in 1964.
A member of the class of 1960 from Columbia City Joint High School, she has become a life long learner.
Even with all her degrees and accomplishments, McKinneyâ€™s education goals are not over.
COLUMBIA CITY â€” While the violent storm that swept through the city, leaving several downed trees, occurred last month, officials from Columbia City and the rest of Whitley County are still reminded of its power as they continue working to finish clearing the damage away.
â€śWeâ€™re trying to keep the sweeper out, picking up debris and stuff thatâ€™s been out on the streets since the storm came through,â€ť said Kelly Cearbaugh, Columbia City street superintendent, at the Columbia City Common Council meeting Tuesday.
COLUMBIA CITY â€” An amendment to the Nuisance Ordinance, concerning tall grass and weeds, was passed by the Columbia City Common Council on second reading Tuesday.
â€śAs youâ€™ll remember Marcia (McNagny, city attorney) had talked about last time that the state had made it easier on communities to be able to enforce our high weed and grass ordinances to basically save us some expense,â€ť said Mayor Ryan Daniel.
Annette Fabray Yoh-Farris, 44, of Cromwell, died Wednesday, July 25, 2012. Born March 20, 1968, she was the daughter of Harold B. and Jilda Mae (Searfoss) Yoh.
Survivors include her husband, Elden Farris; four children; father, Harold B. (Daphne) Yoh; mother, Jilda Yoh ; and one brother.
Memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday at DeMoney-Grimes Countryside Park Funeral Home, Columbia City. Memorial gifts may be given to the Yoh-Farris Family in care of DeMoney-Grimes Funeral Home. Visit www.demoneygrimes.com.
Donald Lowell Smith, 65, of Columbia City, diedat 10:16 p.m. Tuesday, July 24, 2012, at Parkview Regional Medical Center, Fort Wayne.
Born Dec. 26, 1946, in Huntington, he was the son of Albert L. and Lois (Walker) Smith.
A lifetime Whitley County resident, he graduated with the class of 1965 from Columbia City High School.
He was honorably discharged from the U. S. Coast Guard where he served from 1966 to 1970.
On July 1, 1967, he married Susan E. Dautz in Columbia City. From 1965-1997, he worked at General Electric, Fort Wayne.
Betty M. Ballard, 86, of Columbia City, died at 11:30 a.m. Thursday, July 26, 2012, at Renaissance Village where she had been a resident since June.
She was born Sept. 4, 1925, in Columbia City, a daughter of Guy and Mabel (Graves) Putman.
She graduated from Columbia City High School in 1943.
On May 28, 1943, she was united in marriage to Delbert Ballard.
They made their home west of Columbia City. Mr. Ballard died in 1975.
She was a sales representative for Avon from 1953 until 1968, and a custodian at Columbia City High School from 1975 until 1990.