Sunday, February 14, 2016

Serious Injuries In Early Morning Crash

LABELLE, FL. --  Three injured in a two vehicle crash in Hendry County Sunday morning.

Guadalupe Ambrosio, 45 of Miami, FL was traveling southbound on State Road 29 in a 1995 Chevy Astro at 2:29 a.m. and was departing the intersection of Sam Lane as Vincent Vespa Jr.,70 of Colchester, CT. was traveling northbound on State Road 29 and was approaching the intersection of Sam Lane.

Ambrosio attempted to make an eastbound turn into a private driveway just south of  Sam Lane and entered the northbound lane of State Road 29, directly into the path of Vespa who was unable to decelerate in time, thus, causing his 2002 Cadillac front to collide with the Chevy's front. This damage is consistent with this crash, said the FHP.

After the collision, the Cadillac overturned onto the northbound shoulder of State Road 29 and came to final rest on its passenger side and was facing a northwesterly direction. The Chevy was pushed backwards in a northwesterly direction and came to final rest on the southbound shoulder of State Road 29 and was facing a southeasterly direction, upon the arrival of the FHP.

Ambrosio was taken to Lehigh Regional Hospital with serious injuries, and Vespa was taken to Lee Memorial with critical injuries and passenger Emilia Vespa, 71 was taken to Lee Memorial with serious injuries.

Charges are pending.

Valentine Daze

Commentary By T.W. Bill Neville

I remember how, in the third grade at St. Bridget's school, how I hated, what I called "VALENTIMES" DAZE. All because of Mary Jane Wagner insisting on giving me those "stupid", I "love" you valentines, while "nobody" else got any, from anyone.

Fortunately, my Mother, counseled me into relaxing and, that "this", too, would pass, and "it" did, so I was not "seriously'" deterred from "glandular" acceptance of the "real" purpose of the "DAY."

In fact, under the laws of today. I could have been cited for "harassment" by some of my Valentine targets. But, as you might suspect, all of these "hooligan" tactics faded away when "Cupid's" arrow struck me, and I joined that select group of going "steady" couples.

Now that my wife, one of the "steady's" is gone, I remember that with me being on the road for over 40 years, when I retired and we moved to Florida, I pledged 2 things. First I told her the story of Casey Stengel, the long time, over 60 years as a major League base ball Mgr., finally retired, and a New York Times reporter went to interview Mrs. Stengel.

Casey had this reputation of "off the wall quotes and stories: and the reporter wanted to know how Mrs. Stengel was going to cope with Casey being home all the time. She didn't hesitate a mini-second and fired back that she might have promised to "love, honor and obey, 'till death do us part"----"BUT i didn't marry him for LUNCH!"

Since I was "moving" my wife away from all her sons, daughter in laws, grand kids, sisters and a brother, this story was part of my sales pitch to get her to move to Florida in 1993. Fortunately for me, "lunch" was not "one" of the things i "pledged" to give up.

As I think more about those times, I believe my pledging to always "honor" her as "MY" ,one and only Valentine, on February 14, was a "clincher" for the 20 plus Valentine days in Florida before she passed,

NOW--------she's gone, and I'm back into my "VALENTIMES DAZE", with no one to "council" or "console" me.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Giant Balloon Event Cancelled This Year

Organizers Reluctantly Cancel ‘Balloons Over Paradise’ for 2016

IMMOKALEE, Fla. – A combination of reasons has forced organizers of the annual “Balloons Over Paradise” event to reluctantly cancel this year’s hot air balloon festival, which had been scheduled to take place April 2 and 3 at the Seminole Casino Hotel.

“Unfortunately, the water table at the event site is very high due to recent rains and as of now, it is too muddy for spectators,” said Gary Bitner, spokesperson for the Seminole Casino Hotel Immokalee, lead organizer of the event. “Nearby construction has also complicated the event planning process for this year.”

2016 would have been the fifth year for what has been an annual event. Organizers expect it to return in 2017.

Video: Past Year Balloon Festival At Immokalee, Fl.

Zika Virus Hotline Opens In Florida

Florida Governor Rick Scott has directed State Surgeon General Dr. John Armstrong to activate a Zika Virus Information Hotline for Florida residents and visitors, as well as anyone planning on traveling to Florida in the near future. 

As of today, Florida has twenty confirmed Zika cases: Hillsborough (3 cases), Miami-Dade (7 cases), Lee (3 cases) Santa Rosa (1 case), Broward (3 case), St. Johns (1 case), Osceola (1 case), and Alachua (1 case). All of the cases in Florida are travel-related and none involve pregnant women. The Florida Department of Health is also issuing a daily update regarding the status of the Zika virus in Florida.

Governor Scott said, “We want to make sure Florida residents and visitors have access to an open line of communication so they can receive the latest updates on the Zika virus in our state. The Zika Virus Information Hotline will answer questions and advise callers on what steps they can take to protect their homes and families from Zika. With over 20 million residents and 100 million tourists, we have made it a priority to stay ahead of the possible spread of this virus in Florida, and we will continue to do all we can to keep our families safe.”

The hotline will be managed by the Florida Department of Health, and will answer questions on the Zika virus and the state’s preparedness efforts. The number for the Zika Virus Information Hotline is 855-622-6735.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Betty Jean Steinshouer - Through The Eyes Of The Author

Renowned Chautauqua influenced speaker Betty Jean Steinshouer will present a view of Florida's history through the eyes of three eminent authors -- Harriet Beecher Stowe, Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, and Marjory Stoneman Douglas -- at LaBelle Heritage Museum's third of four 2015/2016 Special Speaker Programs, made possible by a collaboration with the Clewiston Museum in a grant from the Florida Humanities Council, on Wednesday, February 17, at 7 p.m. 

The museum is located at 360 North Bridge Street, and overflow parking is available at Harold P. Curtis Honey Co., 355 North Bridge Street, immediately across the street from the museum courtesy of Rene Curtis Pratt.

Betty Jean Steinshouer, no stranger to LaBelle Heritage Museum regular program attendees, will assume the character of each of the three renowned authors for her presentation in LaBelle and will also appear at the Clewiston Museum, 109 Central Avenue, on Thursday, February 18, also at 7 p.m., in a similar but entirely different program in which she assumes the persona of various women writers who escaped to Florida over the years for a variety of reasons. Both programs are open to the public at no charge as they are funded by the Florida Humanities Council through its grants program.