“West City’s Good Luck Charm” – Shirley Smith Set to Retire After Nearly Four Decades of Service

Shirley Smith, who has been the Village of West City's Clerk since 1978, will be retiring on April 30th.  (William McPherson, West Frankfort Gazette photo)

Shirley Smith, who has been the Village of West City’s Clerk since 1978, will be retiring on April 30th. (William McPherson, West Frankfort Gazette photo)

WEST CITY, IL (William McPherson- The Benton Gazette. Please click to read the entire story. Here is an excerpt) Shirley Smith, 79, has been West City’s good luck charm for nearly four decades. The West City Village Board accepted her retirement at the March board meeting. When Smith began her job as West City Village Clerk, there was only one fully paved road in the entire village—highway 14. Now nearly all of the roads are paved, and the tiny village is one of the most successful, business wise, in all of Southern Illinois. “It’s been amazing the changes that have happened in West City. There were no computers when I started—all the checks, vouchers were written out by hand. The minutes of the board meetings were written out by hand in a bound book,” she said as she pulled out one of the many file drawers in her small office to locate one of the original ledgers.

Storm spotter training in West City last night

skywarnWEST CITY, IL (Jasmine Adams and Chris Drury – KFVS TV- Please click on the link to watch the story and accompanying video)  At the West City Community Center in West City, IL there is a class taking place that helps save lives around the area. Skywarn Storm Spotter Training is a class of volunteers that give hours of their time to learn about storms and how to detect them. These individuals play an important role in the process of warning citizens about severe weather. The National Weather Service relies on these trained volunteers to add to Doppler radar information on severe storms, tornadoes and flash floods.

Law enforcement agencies put out APB

Franklin County Sheriff’s office has reported there is an erratic driver on Route 14 at the Franklin-Hamilton county line.  They sent out an APB to the State Police and all local authorities.

Mug shot of this man

                      Mug shot of this man

He is a jolly fat man in a sleigh with eight tiny reindeer.  He is weaving rooftop to rooftop and going down chimneys with homes that have them.  He is carrying a bag that is suspected to be full of toys for children.

Direction of travel is unknown.  He is suspected to either head to Ewing and Whittington, maybe head to Benton, or go down North Thompsonville road and hit Akin and T’ville next.

It is guaranteed that he will hit all houses in West Frankfort, Logan, Zeigler, Freeman Spur, Orient, Pulmfield, Royalton, Cleburne, Mulkeytown, Christopher, Coello, Valier, Sesser, Buckner, West City and all rural areas in between.

He prefers milk and cookies at every stop.  He will visit every house in the county.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

 

Peabody, UMWA settle dispute over retiree health benefits

The United Mine Workers of America has agreed to a $400 million agreement with Peabody Energy Corp. and Patriot Coal Corp. that settles a bitter dispute over healthcare benefits for retirees in the wake of Patriot’s bankruptcy.

Here’s the link to the story in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Cast revealed for RLC fall play “Treasure Island”

“Treasure Island” will feature several returning actors to the RLC theater stage, including a duo who have performed together five times.

Aaron Dawson, a 15-year-old from Benton, will be playing the role of Captain Flint, a parrot puppet. “Treasure Island” will be Dawson’s ninth show with Webb and 11th show of his acting career, making him one of the more experienced of the actors and also the youngest.

“I have a lot of fun at the theater and I get to meet all sorts of new people,” said Dawson. “When I was younger, my parents asked me if I was interested in acting, so I tried it and I really liked it. Tracey invited me to do a show at Rend Lake after seeing me with Pyramid Players [a theater company out of Benton], and it went very well.”

TWO DAYS OF DANCING  Cast members of Rend Lake College's fall play "Treasure Island" spent two days last week learning a dance number for the musical piece in RLC's Theatre. The play will open at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7 and will run through Sunday, Nov. 10. Tickets are on sale, starting Oct. 7.  (ReAnne Palmer / RLC Public Information)

TWO DAYS OF DANCING
Cast members of Rend Lake College’s fall play “Treasure Island” spent two days last week learning a dance number for the musical piece in RLC’s Theatre. The play will open at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7 and will run through Sunday, Nov. 10. Tickets are on sale, starting Oct. 7.
(ReAnne Palmer / RLC Public Information)

Dawson said he plans to attend Rend Lake College in a few years as a general studies and theater major before graduating and attending ministerial school.

Another actor from Benton, John Nalley, will be joining Dawson on stage for his fifth show as the notorious Long John Silver. Nalley has had several starring roles on the RLC theater stage, including the father in Father of the Bride, Mr. Banks.

“My friend and I auditioned on a whim back in 2009, and we ended up playing the villain and villainess in the show,” said Nalley. “I began to think of the theater as my home away from home. I’ll take any role, big or small, as long as I get to perform.”

In addition to Dawson and Nalley, there are 33 actors, all of which are expected to help build the set in addition to learning lines and dances:

  • Tara Bell Janowick (Johnston City) as Meg Trueblood
  • Phillip Borcherding (Mt. Vernon) as Banjo Brody (banjo)
  • Bethaney Brown (Mt. Vernon) as Nightingale Nell
  • Shawna Cardwell (Benton) as Whipstitch Winnie
  • Phillip Catt (Tamaroa) as Newport Ned
  • Nick Conner (Sesser) as Nathaniel Crisp
  • Elecia Crider (Woodlawn) as Shoreditch Sal
  • Cortne Fletcher (Benton) as Canterbury Kate
  • Curtis Galloway (Benton) as Israel Hands
  • Donald T. Graham-Barnett (Du Quoin) as Peatbog Pat
  • Sierra Harrell (Mt. Vernon) as Miss Lucinda Livesey
  • John Hunsell (Mt. Vernon) as Old Joe
  • Brandon Isom (Christopher) as Gentleman Jack
  • Robin Johnson (Benton) as Greystoke Gertie
  • Clay Lewis (Mt. Vernon) as Hardy
  • Chris Milburn (Mt. Vernon) as Captain Obadiah Smollett
  • Thomas Miller (Pinckneyville) as Tenderloin Ted (guitar)
  • George Motsinger (Christopher) as Barnacle Billy
  • Cheyenne Needham (Benton) as Cornwall Kelly
  • Josh Nelson (Mt. Vernon) as Ben Gunn
  • Quentin Overturf (McLeansboro) as Blind Pugh
  • Vonnie Palmer (Johnston City) as Mad Mary Maguire
  • Shelby Patterson (Waltonville) as Piccadilly Poll
  • Eric Price (Benton) as Jim Hawkins
  • Danielle Roberts (Mt. Vernon) as Dizzy Delores (recorder)
  • Devin Riley (Dix) as Harry Flash
  • Trevor Skidmore (Mt. Vernon) as Lionheart Lenny
  • Christina South (Enfield) as Lady Jacqueline Trelawney
  • Caleb Staples (Mt. Vernon) as Black Dog
  • Troy Stickey (Benton) as George Merry and Billy Bones
  • Lauryn Strom (Sesser) as Liverpool Lee (percussion)
  • Shannon Twitty (Bluford) as Sherwood Sheila (tambourine)
  • Yuting Zhang (Dahlgren) as Cheng I Sao

There are also several crew members and volunteers helping with the play, including Skyler Alldredge (Benton), Josh Dawson (Benton), Nicole Foskey (Johnston City), Timothy Learned (Mulkeytown), Anthony Mitchell (Benton), Josh Moyer (Mt. Vernon), Shelby Patterson (Waltonville), Jessa Poninski (Mt. Vernon), Aaron Ramsey (Mt. Vernon), Matthew Rush (Benton), Krystal Schuh (Newton) and Shannon Webb (Ewing).

Tickets for the play will go on sale today (Oct. 7) for $12 a ticket. Show times are 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7 through Saturday, Nov. 9; and 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 10. To purchase tickets, contact Cathy Cross at 618-437-5321, Ext. 1263. Tickets will be available at the Theatre on show night if they are not sold out.

Benton police make multiple weekend arrests

Benton police reported a busy weekend with multiple arrests.

On October 5, 2013 Benton Police arrested Koltyn Irvin, age 24, of Christopher for public indecency and resisting a peace officer.  Irvin was charged and transported to the Franklin County Jail for further processing.

On October 5, 2013 Benton Police arrested David J. Marks, age 42, of Carbondale for driving while suspended.  Marks was charged and transported to the Franklin County Jail for further processing.

On October 5, 2013 Benton Police were dispatched to the 100 block of East Main Street in reference to a domestic disturbance.  Through investigation, police arrested Angela K. Behringer, age 42, of Benton for aggravated battery and vehicular invasion.  Behringer was charged and transported to the Franklin County Jail for further processing.

On October 6, 2013 Benton Police arrested Nichole R. Maynor, age 32, of Benton on an active Franklin County warrant for failure to appear.  Maynor was transported to the Franklin County Jail for further processing.

On October 6, 2013 Benton Police were dispatched to the 200 block of West Sixth Street in reference to criminal trespass.  Through investigation, police arrested Randy A. Joy, age 30, of Ina for criminal trespass to property.  Joy was charged and transported to the Franklin County Jail for further processing.

On October 6, 2013 Benton Police arrested Anthony D. Cano, age 22, of Herrin for violation of order of protection.  Cano was charged and transported to the Franklin County Jail for further processing.

Dates set for first Concealed Carry certification classes at RLC

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INA, Ill. – Gun owners in Southern Illinois and throughout the state will soon have the option to choose Rend Lake College as a training center to earn a concealed carry license.

On Monday, the Illinois State Police released a list of approved concealed carry firearm training curricula and training centers, including RLC, in connection with the Firearm Concealed Carry Act, which was passed on July 9, 2013. Three classes have been set in a two-day format to offer the certification.

The classes will be held in a two-day format. Two classes will be held from 8-4:30 p.m. at the RLC MarketPlace in Mt. Vernon: Saturday, Nov. 9 and Sunday, Nov. 10; and Saturday, Dec. 7 and Sunday, Dec. 8.

Additionally, one class scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 23 and Sunday, Nov. 24 will last from 8-6 p.m. at the RLC MarketPlace for training in concealed carry laws in both Illinois and Utah.

The first day of the course will include classroom work and instruction by a RLC certified instructor, including a minimum of 8 hours of work and a half-hour lunch break. No firearms should be brought into the classroom or onto the RLC MarketPlace campus.

Day two instruction will begin at the RLC MarketPlace and the class will travel to the Mt. Vernon Firing Range to complete certification. Instruction will be provided on the first day of the class regarding firearms for the Firing Range.

RLC is offering the classes at $200 for each two-day session. Once the participant enrolls in the training class, they must also be fingerprinted at an additional cost of approximately $75 and fill out an application for a state license, which costs $150. Fingerprinting will not be available during the class. The state will not begin processing these applications before January 5, 2014; however, the training class can be completed beforehand.

To register for the class, contact the RLC Community and Corporate Education Division at 618-437-5321, Ext. 1714. Registration and payment must be completed by the day before the class, and will be accepted until the class is full.

More information will be provided online at www.rlc.edu/firearmtraining.

Junior Rangers football in action for final time Saturday

Front row: Kadin Kiselewski, Bailey Hopson, Jordan Ligon, Duncan Reiger, Caden Stover, Kyle Sneed, and Austyn Downen.   2nd row: Tyler A Heard, Bret Furlong, Jadon Stark, Allen Hall, Caleb Pemberton, Warren Smothers, Shawn Dennis, and Damian Parker, 3rd row: Head coach: Ray Minor, Kainen Gailoto, Clayton Smith, Hamilton Page, Zackary Marvel, Brett Bonenberger, Blane Pankey, Ty Gordon, Dakota Cosby, and Asst Coach: Aron Kays. Back row:  Asst Coach: Tyler McGuire, Justus Poole, Slade VanWinkle, Jimmy Poole, Parker McGuire, Joey Craig, Andrew Dunn, Carston Sanders, and Asst Coach: John Bonenberger.

Front row: Kadin Kiselewski, Bailey Hopson, Jordan Ligon, Duncan Reiger, Caden Stover, Kyle Sneed, and Austyn Downen.
2nd row: Tyler A Heard, Bret Furlong, Jadon Stark, Allen Hall, Caleb Pemberton, Warren Smothers, Shawn Dennis, and Damian Parker,
3rd row: Head coach: Ray Minor, Kainen Gailoto, Clayton Smith, Hamilton Page, Zackary Marvel, Brett Bonenberger, Blane Pankey, Ty Gordon, Dakota Cosby, and Asst Coach: Aron Kays.
Back row: Asst Coach: Tyler McGuire, Justus Poole, Slade VanWinkle, Jimmy Poole, Parker McGuire, Joey Craig, Andrew Dunn, Carston Sanders, and Asst Coach: John Bonenberger.

The Benton Junior Rangers football team will be in action for the final time Saturday, Oct. 5 when they face Carterville, at Murphysboro.  The Junior Rangers are 4-2 with victories over West Frankfort, Massac County, Centralia and Marion and losses to Herrin and Carbondale.

 

 

 

 

 

Obituary – Jay Douglas Webb – Ewing

EWING – Jay Douglas Webb, 72, died Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2013, while farming near Wilson Road in Benton.

Per his wishes, Mr. Webb will be cremated. A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 5, at the home of Jay and Judy Webb at 13381 Webb Hill Road in Ewing with Larry Miller officiating.

Leffler-Poulson Funeral Home of Benton is in charge of arrangements.

Jay was born May 6, 1941, in Ewing, the son of Roy Webb and Mickey (McKee) Webb.

He married the former Judy McKinnon on Oct. 17, 1964, and she survives.

Jay, along with his wife, Judy, and their son, Shannon, owned and operated Webb Farms of Ewing. He was a member of Farm Bureau, FFA Alumni and a former Ewing School Board member. He also enjoyed auctioneering.

Survivors include his wife of 48 years, Judy Webb of Ewing; a son, Shannon Webb and wife, Tracey, of Ewing and a granddaughter, Josie Lee Webb of Ewing.  Also surviving is a sister, Kay and husband, Rick Boundy, of Metamora; two aunts, Billie J. and husband, Herb Winemiller, and Judy McKee; two sisters-in-law, Donna Ellis of West Frankfort, and Mary McKinnon of Burlington, Wis.; and several nephews, nieces and cousins.

Jay was preceded in death by his parents; and grandparents.

Memorials in memory of Jay Webb, may be made to the organization of the donor’s choice.

Obituary – James (Jay) Reeves Espy – Christopher

James (Jay) Reeves Espy, 82, of Christopher IL died Wednesday October 2, 2013 at Herrin Hospital

Jay was born to the late James Reeves and Ellen Pearle Espy of Beverly Hills, California. Jay graduated from the Holy Cross Abbey High School in Canon City, CO; and then Cal Polytechnic Institute in San Luis Obispo, California.  He married Judith L. Trogolo in 1961 and they lived together in Lawrence, KS. before relocating to Christopher, IL in 1963.

Jay worked with the Sheriffs department of Los Angeles County, and then with Merck Pharmaceutical before joining the Hoe Supply Company in Christopher for more than 38 years.

Jay is a proud veteran of the Korean War and was a long time private pilot. He was a member of the Christopher High School board of education, and an active member of the American Legion and Knights of Columbus. He was an avid fisherman, a trap and skeet enthusiast, and earned may honors with his sharp shooting over the years. Jay was known for his love of animals, his dry sense of humor, and most importantly as a loving and supportive father to his family.

He is survived by his wife, Judith L. Espy, Christopher IL; three children, James Trogolo Espy of Christopher; Treza L. Espy of Warrenton, MO; and Mary Ellen McCoy of Clarksville, TN.  He is also survived by his sister Ellen K. E. Roesch of Beverly Hills; cousin Leslie Dolan of St. Louis; his grandson Charles J. McCoy of Clarksville, TN; 13 nieces and nephews; and his best friend Harry Thomas of Buckner lL.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Saint Andrews Altar Society and will be accepted at the funeral home or church.

A memorial visitation  service will be held at Gilbert Funeral Home in Christopher IL on Friday, October 5 from 6 to 8 pm. A funeral Mass will be celebrated Saturday Oct.6, 2013 at 11 a.m. at St. Andrew Catholic Church in Christopher.

A private burial at the St. Andrew Catholic Cemetery in Christopher will occur at a later date.

 The Christopher American legion will be conducting a service at the church after  the Mass.

Benton, West Frankfort, Illinois News | Franklin County News