Council gives nod for system

July 23, 2009 Independence County’s tornado sirens are old, outdated and obsolete, so officials are looking at a new way to alert citizens not only to serious weather but other emergencies as well.Tuesday night, Batesville 911 Dispatch Supervisor Joy Wilson and Independence County Office of Emergency Management Director Glen Willis presented a program on AlertXpress, a high speed notification solution used by the Arkansas Crime Information Center and other government agencies.

Boy’s death determined accidental

July 23, 2009 WALNUT RIDGE — A boy who would have celebrated his 12th birthday today died Sunday of an accidentally self-inflicted gunshot from what he thought was a toy gun, investigators with the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department have determined.Jace Freeman of rural Smithville was shot near his right temple about 7:30 p.m. Saturday while playing with his 13-year-old brother, Dyllon, in their great-grandmother’s yard. The home is in the Jesup community.

Familiar face, visitor wins PJ 5K titles

July 22, 2009 Familiar and not-so-familiar faces led the way at the PJ 5K Friday night.Emily Carroll won the women’s division at the annual benefit for cancer research. The senior-to-be at Melbourne High School, a consistent winner in road races and in high school cross country and track and field meets, finished the 5-kilometer course in 20 minutes, 19.62 seconds.Jesse Littlefield, a visitor from Bonita Springs, Fla., won the men’s division in 18:05.87.The race starts and finishes in front of Eagle Mountain Magnet.

News of other days

July 22, 2009 Editor’s note: This column ran previously in the Guard on Aug. 2, 1996.

Heavy rains close roads

July 22, 2009 Flash flood warnings from the National Weather Service were dead-on Tuesday night.Glen Willis, coordinator for the Independence County Office of Emergency Management, said he had received reports from across the county that from 4 to 5 inches of rain fell throughout the day.He also said there were 25-30 flash flood spots across the county that required roads to be closed temporarily.“From about 6 to 10:30 p.m. was a pretty rough time,” Willis said.

Board races develop

July 22, 2009 While incumbent Deborah Frazier will hold onto her Position 1 spot on the Midland School Board, James Brandon Bowren will challenge incumbent James Grider for Position 2, making it the only school board race to develop in Independence County as of Friday’s noon deadline. Both positions carry four-year terms. Write-in candidates had until noon today  to file, County Clerk Karen Wooldridge said.At Southside, Vonda Crowl has filed for an at-large, five-year term position to replace board member Gary Mize.

Author to sign book Saturday

July 22, 2009 Wade Rivers really does live his name. He lives by a river and has to wade it on more than one occasion, particularly when his part of the state received 20 inches of rain in 20 days. Born in Oklahoma, Rivers was raised in Arkansas and now lives in west Arkansas, where he enjoys the passions of his life: the rivers, God, his family and writing.Rivers has written his first novel, entitled “Y City,” published by The P3 Press in Dallas. The book takes place in the land he loves, surrounded by the rivers and lakes of the Ouachita Mountains.

Glad Hearts to perform at Calico Rock

July 22, 2009 Calico Rock — Local group Glad Hearts from the Ozarks will perform at 7 p.m. Saturday at the Calico Rock Music Hall. Glad Hearts features Billie Bell on doghouse bass and vocals, Kaye Allen on guitar and lead vocals, Joyce Duggins on mandolin, and Bonnie Chandler on banjo. The music hall is located at the junction of state highways 5 and 56 in Calico Rock in the historic Methodist church building. For more information call (870) 297-3100.

Census workers doing GPS marking

July 22, 2009 LITTLE ROCK — Attorney General Dustin McDaniel reports that his office has received inquiries from Arkansas residents regarding GPS “marking” by United States Census personnel and issued a statement to advise consumers concerned about the process.

Area Briefs

July 22, 2009 Resignation to be discussedCONCORD — The Concord School Board will meet at 7 p.m. Monday in the administration building to accept an employee resignation, according to an agenda for the session.A financial report will also be reviewed. CorrectionThe time for a Look Good, Feel Better program was incorrectly listed in Tuesday’s Guard. It will be from 9 to 11 a.m. Monday.