Archive - News Article
(The top 10 stories of 2011 have been selected by employees of the Daily Democrat. This is No. 7.)
By J SWYGART
The deaths of a Decatur couple in a fire in their home was voted as the No. 7 news story of 2011.
Claude E. West, 74, and his wife Donna K. West, 71, died in a house fire at 720 Elm Street, Decatur, in the early morning hours of Aug. 11.
Both died of smoke inhalation, according to Assistant Fire Chief Jim Hitchcock.
The latest phenomenon sweeping the country has come to Decatur as an anonymous donor presented the Decatur Walmart store with five $100 gift cards Wednesday afternoon.
According to Jessica Phillips, layaway manager at the Decatur Walmart, a man came into the store and said he wished to donate the gift cards to help pay for a child's Christmas. He said the cards could be used to either pay off an existing layaway account or to purchase new toys, as long as the money was spent on children.
A native of Decatur who recently resigned as a patrolman with the Warsaw police force has been charged with one count each of child molesting and child solicitation, allegedly involving a girl under age 14.
Timothy S. Whitright, of rural Warsaw, who grew up here and graduated from Bellmont High School, posted a $10,000 bond to leave the Kosciusko County Jail at Warsaw.
Whitright, who will turn 29 on December 30, has been scheduled for a hearing on January 5 in Kosciusko Superior Court One at Warsaw.
The sudden death of a cornerstone of the wrestling program at Bellmont High School was voted as the No. 9 news story of 2011.
John W. Friedt, 56, of Decatur, died unexpectedly on February 17 at Lutheran Hospital in Fort Wayne.
Friedt worked as a district technician for the Adams County Soil and Water Conservation District for 36 years and was a member of the Decatur Wrestling Club. He coached wrestling at Bellmont High School and Bellmont Middle School for 36 years.
(Editor’s note: As has been the tradition in recent years, employees of the Decatur Daily Democrat are polled in mid-December and asked to cast their votes for what they believe to be the top news stories of the year. Today’s entry was voted the No. 10 story of 2011.)
Although the bottom line of the financial page for the Adams Health Network (AHN) isn't as high as what the 2011 budget adopted last year projected, it's still six figures in the black and over $100,000 higher than last month, according to information reported to the hospital trustees Wednesday night at their monthly meeting.
The new fulltime reporter on the staff of the Daily Democrat is Jannaya Andrews of rural Rockford, Ohio.
Andrews will take over on January 1 from Eric Mann, who is retiring on December 31 from fulltime work after 41 years on the job.
She says she is "happy to be here and looking forward" to the work.
Andrews knows Decatur and Adams County well, having been born in Decatur and having graduated in 1991 from Bellmont High School.
By J SWYGART
Adams County's jobless rate climbed to its highest level since February last month, according to a report from the Indiana Department of Workforce Development released Tuesday.
The county's 8.3 percent jobless rate for November was up slightly from the 8.1 percent reading in October, and was the highest since February's 8.8 percent reading. The high for the year came in January, when the county had a 9.2 percent unemployment rate. The county recorded its lowest rate of the year in April at 7.6 percent.
BY ERIC MANN
The owner of Affolder Implement Sales in Berne, Greg Milholland of Decatur, said this morning that two-thirds of the building was destroyed by fire on Monday night and he estimated the overall loss at more than a million dollars.
After 12 years of holding down the northernmost seat of the half-moon desk-like setup which holds members of city council, the mayor, city attorney, and clerk-treasurer for council meetings on the second floor of City Hall, Barb Engle got out of the chair and walked away for the final time at a little after 8 p.m. on Tuesday.
A few moments earlier, choking back tears, the only at-large member of council thanked city officials, council members and department heads, saying "it has been a pleasure" to serve.