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Saturday, 08 August 2015 18:02

Nelson Leon Ford Jr.

Nelson Leon Ford Jr.

Place of Residence:    Stigler, Oklahoma  

Age:    74

Died:    Friday, August 7, 2015      

Occupation:    Factory Worker

Service Date:    2:00 PM Tuesday, August 11th, 2015

Place of Service:    Wilson Baptist Church, Wilson Community, Oklahoma

Interment:    Salt Creek Cemetery

Published in Obituaries

OKLAHOMA CITY – State Rep. Mike Shelton said Monday he will refile an earthquake training measure that House Republicans suffocated three years ago.

The Oklahoma City Democrat filed House Bill 2868 in 2012, to require every school district in the state to have “a written plan and procedures in place for protecting students, faculty, staff, administrators and visitors from earthquakes.”

“The state must find a way to provide schools with sufficient funds to provide training on ‘earthquake preparedness and response’,” Shelton said Monday. At least two drills would be conducted each year “for the purpose of identifying a safe place to take cover and to teach participants how to react during an earthquake,” his prior legislation decreed.

The training would be coordinated and provided or approved by the state Department of Emergency Management.

After Shelton filed his measure, a governor’s staffer sent an email to the governor’s communications director, asking him to, “Make this go away.” Subsequently the Republican House leadership sent Shelton’s HB 2868 to the Common Education Committee, where it died without ever receiving a hearing.

“These earthquakes are centered largely in central and northern Oklahoma,” Shelton noted. “We have thousands of students attending elementary, junior and senior high schools in that area, as well as the thousands of students attending Oklahoma State University in Stillwater and Langston University in Logan County.”

Furthermore, Shelton pointed out, the earthquakes are growing in frequency and intensity.

Between 1978 and 2008, a 30-year period, Oklahoma averaged 1.6 earthquakes per year of magnitude 3 or greater.

Records indicate Oklahoma had been subjected to 18 earthquakes of magnitude 4 or greater as of July 28. In comparison, the Oklahoma Geological Survey recorded 14 magnitude 4 or greater tremors in all of 2014, three in 2013 and one in 2012.

The U.S. Geological Survey counted 585 ‘quakes in Oklahoma of magnitude 3 or greater last year. By noon Monday the USGS had logged 544 ‘quakes of magnitude 3 or greater in Oklahoma. Bob Jackman, an independent geologist who lives in Tulsa, said that at the existing rate, Oklahoma is on track to experience a record 923 earthquakes of magnitude 3.0 or higher by the end of the year.

Shelton’s legislative district includes Jones and Choctaw in eastern Oklahoma County, an area that has been seismically active and is just north of the five largest oilfield wastewater disposal wells in the state.

“This is our opportunity to get out in front of this and be proactive, not reactive,” Shelton asserted. “We need to do more to educate and to protect Oklahomans. Far too often we don’t pay attention until a disaster occurs because of some situation we were already aware of. Preparedness now will help avoid somebody being severely injured or killed in one of these earthquakes.”

Published in Political News

The public is invited to learn about “The Politics Surrounding Israel – The REAL Story”, at the Tuesday, August 11 meeting of the Okmulgee County Republicans.

The Republicans guest speaker will be Pam Pollard, the State President of the Oklahoma Federation of Republican Women. Pollard was recently honored to travel to Israel with a group hosted by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. The group toured not only religious sites, but other areas impacted by the Palestinian conflict, including an Israeli hospital close to the border. They were also briefed by an Israeli General and a member of Parliament and many came away with a different perspective of the situation in that area than what the U.S. media portrays.

Questions such as “Are the Israelies “haters” as portrayed in the U.S. media, or are they “helpers?” “What role does religion play in the regional conflict?” “Why does Israel have such a hard line attitude toward defense and what is the reason for such a robust defense system as the Iron Dome?”

Pollard will share pictures of sites visited and a question and answer time will be allowed at the end of the presentation.

The meeting begins at 7 p.m. in the OSU Student Union Building. OSU is located at 1801 E 4th Street in Okmulgee.

Published in Okmulgee in the News

The Okmulgee County Health Department and the Okmulgee County Wellness Coalition announced today the application process for Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs is open. Businesses, communities, educational institutions, and congregations that may qualify for certification are encouraged to apply for recognition of their efforts toward making Oklahoma a healthier place to live.

A crucial factor in improving the health of Oklahomans is providing a variety of opportunities for residents to make healthier choices where they live, work, learn and play. The Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs meet this challenge by recognizing businesses, campuses, communities, congregations, early childhood programs, restaurants, and schools that encourage health-focused behaviors and policies.

“The Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs provide opportunities for Okmulgee County’s businesses, campuses, communities, congregations, early childhood programs, restaurants, and schools to create environments that support policies and individual decisions that ultimately will improve Oklahoma’s health outcomes,” said Bobby Howard. “We encourage potential applicants to consider what they are doing to make the healthy choice the easy choice for their employees, customers, students, and citizens, and to submit an application for Certified Healthy Oklahoma status.”

Applications are now being accepted for Certified Healthy Oklahoma’s seven categories of certification:

  • The Certified Healthy Business program recognizes workplaces that provide health and wellness opportunities for their employees.
  • The Certified Healthy Campus program recognizes colleges and career technology centers that provide a healthy environment for faculty, staff and students.
  • The Certified Healthy Community program recognizes communities that offer citizens a healthy place to live, work, learn and play.
  • The Certified Healthy Congregation program recognizes communities of all faiths that provide health and wellness opportunities to their members and/or attendees and staff.
  • The Certified Healthy Early Childhood Program recognizes early childhood programs that are providing a healthy environment for children and their families, as well as their staff.
  • The Certified Healthy Restaurant program recognizes restaurants that provide healthy options for their patrons and employees.
  • The Certified Healthy School program recognizes schools working to improve student and employee health.

Each program has three levels of certification: Basic, Merit, and Excellence. Applications must be submitted by Nov. 1 for certification consideration. Award winners will be notified in December, and acknowledged at an awards ceremony in Norman Feb. 24, 2016.

The Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs are a joint effort of the Oklahoma State Department of Health, the Oklahoma State Chamber, the Oklahoma Academy, the Oklahoma Turning Point Council, and other partners who are helping to shape a healthier future for Oklahoma. Last year, more than 1700 applicants received certification.

Criteria details and application information for all Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs are now available on the Certified Healthy Oklahoma website at www.certifiedhealthyok.com.

For local information or assistance with the application process, please contact: Bobby Howard, 918-756-1883 x 140.

Published in Okmulgee in the News
Thursday, 06 August 2015 08:30

MCNDH sponsors summit for diabetes awareness

OKMULGEE, Okla. — The Muscogee (Creek) Nation Department of Health and Dewar Creek Indian Community proudly announce the ninth annual MCN Citizens’ Diabetes Awareness Summit will be held Thursday, Aug. 27 at First Baptist Church in Okmulgee.

“This exciting and informative conference will focus on finding ways to stop the rapid spread of one of the world’s most damaging, costly and preventable diseases, type 2 diabetes,” MCNDH Exercise Programs Manager Duane Meadows said.

Harold Hamm Diabetes Center Educators will provide the conference presentations.

The conference will cover the differences between type 1 and type 2 diabetes, controlling, prevention and treatment of diabetes, nutrition and exercise tips.

The summit is free and is geared toward Muscogee (Creek) citizens. Limited seating will be available for spouses of citizens and other tribal citizens. There are no accommodations for children.

For more information about the ninth annual MCN Citizens’ Diabetes Awareness Summit, look for fliers available at MCNDH clinics, MCN community centers, or contact Duane Meadows at: 918-695-1325, or William Fixico at: 918-637-9683.

Published in Okmulgee in the News

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When the pumpkin turns into a carriage, and the mice become coachmen, and Cinderella arrives, it's time to start the Ball.  Such was the scene for Tuesday's Lions Club meeting with Jill Donovan, founder/owner of Rustic Cuff in Tulsa.  Once the meeting was turned over to Jill, she began taking us on this mythical journey that has been her life up until now--never, ever thinking she would be designing, creating, and fashioning bracelets that are "the rage" now.

Speaking to a jam-packed mixture of Lions and guests (all of whom were special), Jill had us "eating out of her hands" from the first "Hi, how are you", even though the signs clearly said "Do not feed the lions (pun intended)".  However, we supped sumptuously from the fountain of her experiences during her growing-up years, having been born in Baltimore, Maryland and finding her way to Tulsa (via Pensacola, Florida) to Oral Roberts University to play soccer.  There she met her husband,Terry, and they are the proud parents of two daughters, Ireland and August, who are her inspiration and great helpers.

Jill never wanted to have a business but began buying bracelets in different countries when she was working for American Airlines.  After researching on the internet how to work with leather and metal, she began fashioning her own designs and giving them to friends, some finding their way to celebrities.  The turning point was when, after five years of calling and writing trying to get a ticket to attend the Oprah Show, she was invited as a guest.  After one of the three airings, the next day she received orders for 2,000 bracelets.  At this point, it would be easy to say "and the rest is history"--but not yet.  She had obtained a law degree but stepped away from her practice to spend more time during the day with her daughters and teaching  law classes at TU during the evenings

Her shop is located on South Harvard and she presently has 24 employees.  Her boundless energy is only exceeded by her "giving nature", and as proof, gave everyone in attendance a bracelet in a draw-string cloth bag.  She was assisted by two of her employees in attendance, Meagen Smith and Jordan Coffman.

What an amazing story as well as a person.  Jill was such an entertaining and inspiring speaker that at times I had quit taking notes because I was so intent on listening to her, not wanting to miss any of the "funnies" that she continually tossed out--you never knew when they were coming.  If we do get her back later on for an update program, you certainly don't want to miss this one.

Pictured in Top Photo is Lion President Beth Flud, Jill Donovan, and Program Chairperson Lion Donna Thomas.   (Photo and information provided by Dean Craig)

Published in Okmulgee in the News

Monica Robertson, 40, was arrested at her Okmulgee home after being served a warrant out of Creek county. Michael Snyder an investigator with the Okmulgee County DA Task Force with the assistance of the Okmulgee County Sheriff’s arrested Robertson Tuesday afternoon and she was booked into the Creek County jail in connection with the recent Wal-Mart grand larceny heist.MonicaRobertson

Robertson is the wife of Rico Robertson who was first arrested in the case last month along with his step-daughter, Mariah Bustamonte, who was his accomplice to the robbery. Robertson was charged in Creek County with conspiracy to commit a felony. Her bond was set at $50,000.

Authorities are still in search of Bryan Johnson, 22, who posed as a Loomis Armored Truck driver and got away with over $70,000.

If anyone has information regarding this case or where Johnson might be located should contact the OSBI at 1-800-522-8017.

Published in Law Enforcement & Fire


(L-R) Okmulgee Chamber Director Rob Roberson, Scott Fetgeiter, Mike James, Terry Wilson, Chamber President Chris Azbel, Oscar Higgs and Mark Tuggle. 
Photo by Paul Orosco ONN Chief Photographer.

The Okmulgee Chamber of Commerce welcomes rodeo fans to the 60th Annual Roy Leblanc Invitational Rodeo as they celebrate their 60 year anniversary.

Rob Roberson said that the Okmulgee Chamber looks forward to the rodeo coming into town each year and wanted to do something special this year to welcome all rodeo fans out and remind them to attend and support the two-day event. This year a "Family Fun Day" has been added in conjunction with the parade on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. will happen downtown on the square

On Tuesday the Chamber and representives of Okmulgee placed a banner on highway 75 in honor of the event.  The rodeo brings in thousand of people to watch and plenty of rodeo talent from around the states.


Published in Okmulgee in the News
Wednesday, 05 August 2015 10:07

Man found dead at Creek Forest Apartments

The Okmulgee Police Dept. responded to a call early this morning about 4:20 a.m. after receiving a report that there was a male lying on the ground outside the Creek Forest Apartments.

After officers arrived they discovered a man in his early 20’s who was unresponsive. He was shortly after pronounced dead at the scene according to the OPD report.

Although there were signs of trauma to his body the cause of death is currently not known.

Police Chief Joe Prentice said that officers are investigating the incident as a homicide but the official cause and manner of death will be determined by the medical examiner.

One witness told ONN that someone pounded on her door for help around 4 a.m. saying that four people had beat up someone.  Another man at the aprtments said he witnessed seeing the body of who he thought was a Creek citizen laying on the ground while police roped off the area.

The name of the victim is not being released pending confirmation of identification and notification of next of kin. No arrests have been made. Additional information will be released at a later time as it becomes available.

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Published in Law Enforcement & Fire


Students Excel in STEM Competitions at National Technology Student Association Conference in Dallas, Texas
Middle and high school students participate in more than 60 STEM competitions during conference.

As education communities nationwide continue to sharpen their focus on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education initiatives, middle and high school students proved their skill in STEM competitions at the 2015 national Technology Student Association (TSA) conference.
About 6,500 students and educators from across the nation gathered in the Dallas, Texas area to attend the conference. It took place at the Gaylord Texan Resort and Convention Center, Grapevine, Texas, from June 28 through July 2.

Middle and high school student members took part in more than 60 competitive events based on principles and concepts learned during the school year in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects. Guided by their chapter advisors (teachers), these students competed with their peers in STEM events such as Agriculture and Biotechnology, CAD, Construction Renovation, Video Game Design, Dragster Design, Engineering Design, Flight Endurance, Music Production, and Structural Engineering. Finalists have been posted on the TSA website.

This marked the second year for the Junior Solar Sprint competition at the national level. This middle school competition partners TSA with the U.S. Army Educational Outreach Program (AEOP). During the JSS event, teams of students design, build, and race solar-powered vehicles and are evaluated on their display and notebook, artisanship and engineering of the model car, and the car’s racing performance. More than 65 teams of 5th through 8th grade students participated, with finalists posted to the TSA website. Beggs TSA has successfully competed at the national level both years.

Approximately 725 students competed collaboratively in the national competition of TEAMS: Tests of Engineering Aptitude, Mathematics, and Science. Students took part in oral and problem-solving exercises addressing real-world engineering challenges related to the theme “The Power of Engineering.” Competition results are available on the TEAMS website.

About 85 teams participated in the TSA VEX Robotics Competition (VRC) and VEX IQ Challenge, an exciting head-to-head robotics challenge. National winners are available online.

Representatives from eight winning teams from the Verizon Innovative App Challenge presented the mobile apps to conference attendees as well. TSA administers this program for the Verizon
Foundation. Winning teams earned cash grants for their schools and received instruction in building their apps to bring them to market through the Google Play store.Barrett&Wright

“As in previous years, the skill and knowledge demonstrated by all students at this year’s conference was remarkable. It is proof that that breadth of opportunity to gain hands-on career preparation in the STEM disciplines through TSA and its competitions has been embraced and is valued by students and educators alike,” explains Dr. Rosanne White, TSA executive director.

About the Technology Student Association (TSA) TSA is a national organization for students engaged in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Open to young people enrolled in or who have completed technology education courses, TSA’s membership includes more than 230,000 middle and high school students in 2,000 schools spanning 49 states. TSA partners with universities and other organizations to promote a variety of STEM competitions and opportunities for students and teachers. TSA is supported by educators, parents, and business leaders who believe in the need for a technologically literate society. From engineers to business managers, our alumni credit TSA with a positive influence in their lives.

Eight students from Beggs Public Schools attended this year’s event in Dallas. Joe Bode, son of Charlie and Dana Bode competed in Flight Endurance and Problem Solving. Cole Christy, son of Dr. Tyson and Kristi Christy competed in Structural Engineering with Nate Tucker, son of Kevin and Rayna Tucker. Cole and Nate won Second Place at the State Competition earlier this year in Midwest City. Bradley Stroud, son of VaLinda Stroud competed in Video Game Design and Problem Solving. Merrick Winters, daughter of Jason and Nicole Winters and Kameron Whiteley, son of Kristy Whiteley, both competed in the Junior Solar Sprint and Structural Engineering. They placed second in the Junior Solar Sprint at the State Competition. Carson Wright, son of Jack and Janel Wright and Easton Barrett, son of Devon and Staci Barrett, also competed in the Junior Solar Sprint as well as the Technical Design Competition. Carson and Easton successfully placed second during both events at State. Merrick, Kameron, Carson and Easton, together, took seventh place nationally in the Dallas Competition.
SprintDisplayMrs. JoLynn Pemberton has been the instructor and sponsor of the Beggs TSA Programs for eight years. She has successfully led the students of this program to state and national competitions multiple times.

Mrs. Pemberton and the students want to thank the parents and grandparents along with Beggs Public Schools Administration and School Board for their continuous support of the program. They also want to thank this year’s sponsors, Christy Family Dentistry of Okmulgee, Central Bank of Oklahoma of Tulsa, The Morris State Bank of Morris, East Central Electric of Okmulgee, Ion Solar and Wind of Tulsa, Jackie Cooper Smart Center of Tulsa and Embroidery Plus Chason’s T-Shirts of Henryetta.

Visit the Technology Student Association website for more information.

Published in Okmulgee in the News
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