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January 9th, 2012

School board begins interview planning

January 10, 2012

The Starkville School District Board of Trustees is expected to produce a list of candidates to interview for the district’s superintendent position during tonight’s 6 p.m. meeting in the Greensboro Center.

“I still have a very positive impression of the pool,” board President Keith Coble said. “(The meeting) is going to start the process in how we move forward.”

The Mississippi School Board Association spent several weeks in November interviewing candidates, checking references and writing up a report. The school board received the report in December, but took the holiday break to review the extensive report and make decisions.

Coble said the board members will discuss whom they would like to interview in executive session tonight.

January 8th

A final farewell: Devin Mitchell, 1995-2012

January 8, 2012

Friends and family gathered at Calvary Baptist Church Sunday afternoon to pay tribute and celebrate the life of Devin Mitchell, the Starkville High School student and athlete who died on New Year’s morning.

An overflow crowd came to the church, and many did not make it inside the doors.

As friends came around to pay their final respects, a slide presentation with photos of Mitchell at school, on the athletic fields and among friends was shown prior to the service.

MSU-Meridian campus opens new building

January 8, 2012

The Mississippi State University-Meridian campus will expand today with the opening of the Newberry Building on Fifth Street, adjacent to the MSU Riley Center in downtown Meridian.

The Newberry Building was donated by the Riley Foundation in 2009, after sitting empty for nearly three decades. The 20,175 square-foot facility will house classrooms and offices of the MSU-Meridian Division of Business.

The building is a historical landmark and required some renovations before the university could take it over, which cost approximately $4 million, along with an additional $1.1 million to furnish and equip the building. City and university officials said they hoped the renovations would help bring new life to downtown Meridian.

Committees shape policies at capitol

January 8, 2012

JACKSON — After Republican Tate Reeves was elected Mississippi lieutenant governor in November, he spent weeks meeting with the 52 state senators to gauge their public policy interests.

He used that information while assigning senators to committees, both as chairmen and as rank-and-file members.

Reeves announced the committee rosters this past Friday, one day after his inauguration, and many senators’ initial assessments were positive. He said he tried to transcend traditional boundaries of party, race and geography.

“It was an incredibly difficult task,” said Reeves, fresh off two terms as state treasurer.

The 122 House members await their committee assignments, and new Speaker Philip Gunn, R-Clinton, said he might announce those late this week.

January 7th

City, county groups ready Yellow Dot plan

January 7, 2012

Starkville and Oktibbeha County residents will soon have an opportunity to sign up for the Yellow Dot program, an initiative designed to immediately provide emergency responders with medical information in the case of an accident.

Participants in the program would receive a yellow sticker to place on the rear windshields of their vehicles as well as forms to fill out with their medical information. The information, with a picture for proper identification, would be placed in a marked folder inside the glove compartments of their automobiles.

Starkville Parks and Recreation Director Matthew Rye said all the pieces are in place for the program to be enacted in the coming months.

“The materials are ordered, and we expect them to be in any day now,” Rye said. “We’re putting the finishing touches on a brochure, and as soon as all that comes together, I’d imagine in the spring we’d be able to roll the program out to the public.”

Starkville Sears not included in recent store closings

January 7, 2012

As a sales associate at the Sears Hometown Store at Starkville’s University Square Shopping Center, Jimmy Glenn would like to set the record straight.

On Dec. 27, Sears Holdings announced the closings of 100 to 120 Sears stores, including the Sears at Columbus’ Leigh Mall, as well as Kmarts, which are owned by Sears Holdings. As a result, Glenn said customer after customer has come into his store asking the same question.

“At least every other person, I would say one out of three people, is asking if we’re closing too,” Glenn said.

His answer is always “no.”

Students use Twitter to remember Mitchell

January 7, 2012

The students of Starkville High School have taken to Twitter to remember their friend and classmate.

Shortly after Devin Mitchell’s death on New Year’s Day, the hashtag “#32forever” — representing the high school football player’s number — began appearing on the social networking site.

Mitchell was murdered in the early morning hours of New Year’s Day while he was visiting family in West Point. Police officials said Tavaris Collins, 31, of West Point allegedly started shooting into the dark when he heard the sounds of fireworks and thought someone was shooting at him. Collins fired multiple rounds and one struck Mitchell in the head. Mitchell was pronounced dead at North Mississippi Medical Center. Collins was arrested and charged with murder.

January 6th

Nelson placed in critical care after accident

January 7, 2012

Starkville Police Officer Derek Nelson was placed in critical care following an automobile wreck Thursday.

Nelson was injured when his car hit a telephone pole and ran off an embankment, causing the vehicle to roll over and flip, SPD Chief David Lindley said. The accident occurred while Nelson was believed to be attempting a traffic stop, Lindley said.

Lindley first said Thursday he believed Nelson suffered a concussion and no serious injuries, but the police chief said he learned the injuries were worse than expected Friday.

“He has a cracked vertebrae in his neck and a broken wrist,” Lindley said. “He also has a cracked orbital bone in his face in addition to the concussion he suffered.”

County Dem chair eyes US Senate seat, declares candidacy

January 7, 2012

Oktibbeha County Democratic Party Chairman Albert N. Gore Jr. says America’s political system is broken and he aims to do something about it.

On Tuesday, Gore qualified to run for incumbent Republican Sen. Roger Wicker’s U.S. Senate seat. Wicker, who has yet to qualify, is expected to do so in seeking his first full term as Mississippi’s junior senator. Wicker was appointed to Sen. Trent Lott’s seat in 2007 when he retired.

Gore, 81, is originally from Webster County and has a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Millsaps College and a master’s degree in divinity from Duke University. He joined the U.S. Army, served in Vietnam and retired as a colonel in 1988. For his service, Gore received numerous awards and recognitions, including the Bronze Star and Purple Heart. Gore was wounded by enemy mortar fire in Vietnam on July 4, 1967.

Garnett eager to serve as Oktibbeha’s chief deputy

January 7, 2012

New Oktibbeha County Chief Deputy Chadd Garnett said he feels honored and lucky to serve in his new role.

“I consider it a privilege to be able to serve the citizens of Oktibbeha County,” he said. “I want all of them to know everybody at the sheriff’s department is out there working hard and making sure their community is a safe place to live and raise their kids.”

Garnett is no stranger to Starkville and Oktibbeha County. Before beginning work at his current position this week he served in multiple positions at Starkville Police Department for a decade.

“I’m a Golden Triangle boy,” he said. “I was born in Starkville, grew up in West Point, lived in Columbus and now I’m back here.”

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