April 27th, 2012
SOUTH WHITLEY â€” Driving 3,138 miles and dedicating 920 hours just in 2011 alone, the South Whitley Area Emergency Food Bank Director Susan Butcher is stepping down from her position effective May 1.
Butcher announced her retirement at the food bank's committee meeting in January.
After 24 years of fighting hunger in the community of South Whitley, Butcher recalls her past struggles and raising a family, plus trying to make ends meet. Years ago Butcher was a single mother and would hitch hike every day to her employment in Fort Wayne.
LARWILL Ââ€” Whitley County police are on the lookout for possibly two suspects who fled a burning car near Larwill Friday afternoon in what investigators say was a mobile meth lab fire.
A call came in to Whitley County Sheriffâ€™s Department dispatchers at 2:07 p.m. Friday reporting a car fire.
Police arriving on the scene found remnants of a â€śone-potâ€ť methamphetamine lab along Ind. 5 just a few yards from Old Trail Road west of Larwill.
WINONA LAKE â€” Graceâ€™s baseball team has announced the signing of Whitko High Schoolâ€™s Richard â€śWesâ€ť Gensch for the 2012-13 season.
Gensch has been a central member of Whitkoâ€™s roster the past four years as a pitcher and first baseman.
The 6-foot-3 high school senior was named Academic All-Conference in 2010 and 2011. He was also Whitkoâ€™s Most Improved Player as a junior.
â€śI felt like Grace was where God wanted me to be,â€ť Gensch said.
â€śI want to continue developing my pitching skills and help the Grace program succeed. I am excited to play baseball for Grace this fall.â€ť
COLUMBIA CITY â€” The Whitley County Auditorâ€™s Office is experiencing a drop in license plate purchases for horse-drawn vehicles following a change in procedures set forth by the county commissioners last year.
â€śThis year we only have about 30 of the 100 plates we normally sell completed,â€ť said Auditor Jen McGuire this week.
Proceeds from buggy plate sales go into the coffers of the countyâ€™s highway department.
COLUMBIA CITY â€” A Wabash County man committed suicide Wednesday afternoon in his car at a Whitley County road intersection.
Police said the unidentified man, 26, died from a self-inflicted gun shot wound.
Police were called to the intersection of Ind. 114 and CR 350 W. at approximately 12:30 p.m. Wednesday after a man pulled up to the south side of the intersection and shot himself in the head.
The 26-year-old man was alive at the scene and was flown by helicopter to a Fort Wayne hospital, where he later died.
Drive one 4 UR School at Whitko Saturday
City Ford will conduct a Drive one 4 UR School event at Whitko High School, South Whitley, Saturday, April 28 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
An array of new Ford vehicles will be at the Whitko parking lot, ready for test drives.
For each test drive, City Ford will donate $20 to Whitko to be directed to the schoolâ€™s National Honor Society and Student Roundtable.
City Ford and school officials encourage Whitko patrons to participate in this unique fund-raising opportunity.
Beef & noodle dinner slated Saturday
COLUMBIA CITY â€” With the 2012 primary election less than two weeks away and the Republican nod for president all but a formality, local eyes are on a few contest for U.S. Congress and races for Whitley County Council and county treasurer.
Three Republican hopefuls are vying for the treasurer slot being vacated by Lisa Richmond.
With no Democrat candidate, the winner of the position in the November general election will be either Cindy (Greer) Doolittle, Laurell E. Hodges or Tami R. Plew.
Board of Commissioners
COLUMBIA CITY â€” Despite a reduction of $650,000 in its annual budget, the Whitley County Highway Department is announcing the continuation of a dust control measure conducted with the nod of the Whitley County Board of Commissioners.
â€śWe will again, by contract, have calcium chloride applied at each residence for dust control,â€ť said Mike Barton, highway department superintendent.
â€śThe commissioners would like to do what (they) can,â€ť said Barton in a press release.
SOUTH WHITLEY â€” With a monthly savings of $2,700, South Whitley town council members voted to change health insurance coverage for town employees, effective May 1.
â€śI met with town employees on this Physicians Health Plan (PHP) which is a less expensive plan and it will save the town some money until the wages and benefits comes around in November,â€ť said Council President Tony Starkey in Tuesday eveningâ€™s monthly meeting. â€śNew health insurance online submittal applications need to be done by each employee by May 1 and new (PHP) rates will hold until then.â€ť
COLUMBIA CITY â€” The council approved additional appropriation of funds to the countyâ€™s Economic Development Corporationâ€™s 2012 budget proposal during Tuesday nightâ€™s meeting.
Alan Tio, president of EDC, presented this request to the board as he explained the importance of EDC and its goal, including sustainability, leadership, innovation and connectedness.
â€śOur mission is also to attain and attract new employment in the community,â€ť said Tio. â€śWe want to be seen as the organization to go to for business in Whitley County.â€ť
EDC is a nonprofit organization established in 1992.