Friday, May 30, 2014

Obituaries - James Marsh, Sarah Martin

James Larry Marsh, Sr., age 71, of LaBelle, passed away May 28, 2014 in Lehigh Acres.

He was born July 23, 1942 in Forsyth, GA, to the late Robert Lee and the late Verley (Campbell) Marsh. He was a resident of LaBelle since 1977. Larry retired from IUEC Local #32, Atlanta and IUEC Local #71, Miami in 1998. He was a longtime member of the LaBelle Quarterback Club and was a member of Sugarland Lodge #281 F&AM.

Survivors include his wife: Diane (McKenna) Marsh, sons: Robert Lee (Terri) Marsh of LaBelle and Larry (Cheryl) Marsh, Jr. of LaBelle, daughter: Marie (Steve) Bone of Alpharetta, GA, brothers: Ronnie (Gayle) Marsh of Hillsboro, GA and Terry Marsh of Juliette, GA, sister-in-law: Cathy Marsh of Jackson, GA; and grandchildren: Stacy Stoodt; Eric (Sarah) Stoodt;, Braxton Bone; Addison Bone; Delaney Marsh and James Marsh III, great-grandchildren: Grayson Stodt and Julia Stodt and several nieces & nephews. 

He was preceded in death by brothers & sisters: LaVerne Bell, Nevelle Marsh, Cecil Marsh, Julian Marsh, Mildred Marsh, Helen Marsh and Lita Pippen.

Memorial Services will be held Monday, June 2, 2014, 11:00 am at Community Harvest Worship Center in LaBelle with Rev. Warren Grant officiating. Visitation will be Sunday from 3-5p.m. at Akin-Davis Funeral Home, LaBelle, FL. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Sugarland Lodge #281 F&AM.

Sarah K. Martin, age 82, of LaBelle, Florida passed away May 28, 2014, in Lehigh Acres, Florida.

Sarah was born on January 9, 1932 in Miami, Florida, daughter of James and Katherine Naylor Coley. She married Joseph E. Martin.

She was a loving sister, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, great-great grandmother and will be missed by all who knew and loved her deeply.

She leaves behind her sister; Betty Frayser, brothers; Zachary Williams and Raymond Williams. Children; Katherine, Edward, Betty, Susan, Victoria, Joseph and Caroline, twenty-one grandchildren, twenty-one great grandchildren and five great-great grandchildren.

A Memorial service will be at First Baptist Church of LaBelle on Friday June 6th at 2:00. Where Rev. Frank Deerey, Jr will officiate.

She was preceded in death by her husband; Joseph E Martin, her father; James Coley, her mother Katherine Naylor, brothers Jim Coley and Paul Coley and son Ralph Martin.

$25,000 To 30 Student Scholarships From Kiwanis

LABELLE, FL. -- The Kiwanis Club of LaBelle recently held a special scholarship awards dinner for over 30 LaBelle High School students. The total amount of scholarships totaled close to $25,000. 

The Kiwanis Club of LaBelle is dedicated to youth and awards annual scholarships to the top high school student candidates selected by the club’s scholarship committee. The scholarships are designed to recognize and support exceptional students graduating from LaBelle High School, who have distinguished themselves academically, as leaders in extracurricular activities and services to their communities. The scholarships consist of a cash award to be used towards the student’s tuition.

A huge thanks goes to the community from the club, because the funding to support these scholarships comes from the proceeds of the Kiwanis Thrift Store. Over the last few years, over $120,000 has been awarded to LaBelle High School students. 

The next time you clean out your closets, or have “left-overs” from a yard sale, consider donating items to the LaBelle Kiwanis Thrift Store so that scholarships can continue to support local students. 

The LaBelle Kiwanis Thrift Store is located at: 155 S. Bridge Street in LaBelle.

Friday Panorama - Cross Road Cattle Ranch



LABELLE, FL. -- 360 degree panoramic photograph of Cross Road in rural Glades County, Fl. Click on keyboard arrows or controls on photo to zoom and move left and right.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Woman Killed Backing Out Of Driveway

PUNTA GORDA, FL. -- In a crash backing out of a driveway, a Punta Gorda resident died of injuries in the freak accident at 5:15 p.m. Wednesday.

Lillian F. Stalnaker, 89 of Punta Gorda, Florida was backing out of her residence's drive way on Pine Needle Dr. and Sugarwood St. in an eastbound direction. Mrs. Stalnaker accidentally pressed the gas pedal too hard and traveled in reverse on Sugarwood St. The 2008 Ford Fuson continued its course in an eastbound direction and into the westbound lanes of Sugarwood St., then struck a mobile home with the rear of the vehicle which came to final rest facing east on the south shoulder of Sugarwood St.

She was transported to Lee Memorial Hospital in Fort Myers.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Residents Being Evacuated In Fire Zone

Brush Fire in Montura Ranch Estates
CLEWISTON, FL. -- There is currently a brush fire in the Montura Ranch Estates area and residents between Brida and Estibo Avenues are being asked to evacuate to the Montura Clubhouse.

Montura is between LaBelle and Clewiston in central Hendry County.

Hendry County Sheriff’s department and Fire Departments are going to door to door with evacuation instructions. 

The Hendry County School Board has taken action to safely house students whose bus stops are affected by the fire and smoke, to the Montura Clubhouse where they are being supervised as the school reaches their parents. 

The fire is not contained at this time and units from Glades and Lee County as well as the Division of Forestry are assisting Hendry County units.

UPDATE: At 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Hendry County Emergency Management reports that the brush fire in Montura Ranch Estates has been 100% contained. The fire started at approximately 2:30 pm Wednesday from an unknown cause. By 6:00 pm it was 80% contained and about 75 acres burned. No structures were reported damaged and no injuries were reported.

Forty responders from 8 different agencies were on the scene. Hendry County Sheriff’s office issued voluntary evacuation instructions and residents on Brida Street were offered shelter at the Montura Clubhouse if they chose to evacuate. Members of the many fire departments that responded: the Division of Forestry, EMS, the American Red Cross, the Sheriff’s department, and the Hendry County Emergency Management team.

Isabelle Akin Dies At 89

Isabelle M. Akin, age 89, of LaBelle, passed away May 25, 2014 in Ocala. She was born Jan. 22, 1925 in Carbur, FL, to the late Owen Edgar and the late Minnie Mae (Swindle) Mills. She was a former longtime resident of Clewiston.

Survivors include three sons: Cecil O. (Ann) Akin of LaBelle, Jerry P. (Rosa) Akin of Seabrook, TX and Jimmy (Nora) Akin of LaBelle, two daughters: Barbara L. Akin of Clewiston, FL, Patty Akin of Ocala, brother: Wilbur Ray Mills of Snellville, GA, sister: Mamie Lee (Charles E. ) Roberts of Plant City, eleven grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, Paul R. Akin and brothers:Huey and Owen "Otto" Mills.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, May 31, 2014, 10:00 am at Ortona Cemetery Pavilion, Moore Haven with Rev. Frank Deerey Jr. officiating. Interment will follow in Ortona Cemetery. Visitation will be Friday, May 30 from 6-8 p.m. at Akin-Davis Funeral Home in LaBelle.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the American Diabetes Foundation or the church or charity of your choice.

Losing Weight At Any Age Beneficial Says New Study

Weight loss at any age in adulthood is worthwhile because it could yield long-term heart and vascular benefits, suggests new research published in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology.

For the first time, the findings also indicate that adults who drop a BMI category—from obese to overweight, or from overweight to normal—at any time during adult life, even if they regain weight, can reduce cardiovascular problems later in life.

The findings are from a study examining the impact of lifelong patterns of weight change on cardiovascular risk factors in a group of British men and women followed since birth in March 1946. They showed that the longer the exposure to excess body fat (adiposity) in adulthood the greater the cardiovascular-related problems in later life, including increased thickness of the carotid artery walls, raised systolic blood pressure, and increased risk of diabetes.

The study used data from 1273 men and women from the UK Medical Research Council National Survey of Health and Development. Participants were classified as normal weight, overweight, or obese in childhood and at 36, 43, 53, and 60–64 years of age. Cardiovascular phenotyping between the ages of 60 and 64 years with carotid intima media thickness (cIMT; a surrogate marker for cardiovascular events) was used to assess the effect of lifetime exposure to adiposity on cardiovascular risk factors.

According to lead author Professor John Deanfield from University College London in the UK, “Our study is unique because it followed individuals for such a long time, more than 60 years, and allowed us to assess the effect of modest, real-life changes in adiposity. Our findings suggest that losing weight at any age can result in long-term cardiovascular health benefits, and support public health strategies and lifestyle modifications that help individuals who are overweight or obese to lose weight at all ages.”

Commenting on the study, Elizabeth Cespedes and Frank Hu from the Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, USA, write, “Although it is encouraging that even transitory weight loss during adulthood has cardiovascular benefits, only 2% of participants in the present study had a sustained reduction in BMI category in adulthood, underscoring the importance of weight maintenance and prevention of weight gain as priorities for public health programming and policy. Improvements in diet and increases in physical activity are crucial levers of long-term weight maintenance and prevention of weight gain in middle-age and early adulthood. Overweight individuals might have even greater health benefit from lifestyle changes such as increased physical activity than do normal weight individuals. The results of this study affirm a continued emphasis on public health policies that enable lifestyle changes to achieve and, especially, to maintain a healthy BMI.”

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Landmark Study Proves Physical Activity Prevents Loss Of Mobility

Physical Activity Prevents Loss of Mobility in Older Adults
PITTSBURGH, PA.– A 20-minute brisk walk around the neighborhood each day could significantly help older adults maintain their ability to walk, according to the results of the longest-running randomized clinical trial evaluating physical activity in the elderly.

The University of Pittsburgh was one of eight field centers that recruited and monitored trial participants. The much-anticipated findings were presented today at the annual meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine in Orlando and concurrently published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. This study was funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

“Doctors have long suspected that maintaining or starting physical activity is important in promoting good health as we age,” said Anne Newman, M.D., M.P.H., principal investigator on the study and chair of Pitt Graduate School of Public Health’s Department of Epidemiology. “But until this study, we didn’t have the proof necessary to say that daily exercise, sustained over several years, truly can prevent loss of mobility. Doctors can now feel confident that moderate physical activity improves the independence and mobility of older adults.”

Dr. Newman and her fellow investigators, coordinated by Marco Pahor, M.D., director of the University of Florida’s Institute on Aging, obtained those results through the Lifestyle Interventions and Independence for Elders, or LIFE study. This study recruited and followed 1,635 sedentary men and women — 216 from Pittsburgh — aged 70 to 89.

Dr. Newman, a geriatrician, supervised the Pittsburgh arm of the LIFE study. For the national study, she chaired the ancillary studies review committee and wrote the outcome procedures for cardiovascular events and the procedures for participant medical clearance at enrollment and for return after illness.

The study showed that prescribed daily physical activity would prevent older adults’ loss of mobility, defined in the study as the inability to walk 400 meters, or about a quarter of a mile. That is approximately equal to a trip from a parked car to a grocery store or a walk through a neighborhood.

Moderate physical activity helped aging adults maintain their ability to walk at a rate 18 percent higher than older adults who did not exercise. It also resulted in a 28 percent reduction in people permanently losing the ability to walk easily.

“This large impact on reducing persistent disability is important,” said Dr. Newman. “Beyond simply maintaining mobility, this shows that we can repair a deficit through physical activity.”

When recruited to the study, participants could walk a quarter mile within 15 minutes, but were at risk for losing that ability. Low physical performance can be a predictor of early death and higher hospitalization rates. Patients with low physical performance are not often recruited to large studies, making it difficult to give research-backed medical recommendations.

“These are people who are patients we see every day. This is why this study is so important: It includes a population that is typically understudied,” said Dr. Pahor.

The participants were randomly sorted into two groups. For two years, the first group walked 150 minutes per week and did strength, flexibility and balance training. Twice each week, they visited field centers, which kept them on track with their exercise. The second group attended health education classes and performed stretching exercises. This phase of the study occurred between February 2010 and December 2013.

Research technicians assessed study participants every six months, checking their ability to walk, their body weight, blood pressure and pulse rate, among other measurements. The staff was not told which participants were assigned to physical activity or to the education classes.

At Pitt, nearly two dozen researchers, students, technicians, nurses and exercise physiologists ensured the trial and data collection ran smoothly. All eight field centers regularly communicated with one another to share tips for encouraging participants to stay in the study.

The researchers noted that there is still a vast amount of data available from the study that needs to be analyzed, including looking at the effects of physical activity on the participants’ cognitive function. The research team also plans to determine how physical activity affected the participants’ physiological, social and biologic factors.

In addition to Pitt and the University of Florida, LIFE study field centers include Northwestern University, Pennington Biomedical Research Center,Stanford University, Tufts University, Wake Forest University and Yale University.

Shopping Alert - Who Makes Your Food?

Six Giant Food Companies Dominate Grocery Store Categories

When buying soft drinks, which brand do you choose: 7Up, Dr Pepper or Schweppes? It doesn’t matter. Your choice is just an illusion, since you’re still buying from a single company that makes all these brands - Dr Pepper.

Did you know that:

Quaker Oats, which you may view as a healthy food, is produced by PepsiCo, a company which is known for its notorious love for junk food.
91% of the soda market is owned by only Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and Dr Pepper Group?
Nestle is the world’s largest food company and owns almost 8,000 brands?

Web journalist Alex Hillsberg says the same is true for other product groups like coffee, butter or soda. 

Hillsberg has investigated our most popular foods and brands and says, "In the competition for a slice of America’s $603-Billion grocery business there are only 4 big companies that count in each product category."

"We’ve analyzed food reports from US Department of Agriculture and other credible sources and gathered the findings.."  Hillsberg and Financesonline.com has an infographic that paints a very grim picture of the food industry today showing how little choice consumers really have at the grocery store:

http://comparisons.financesonline.com/top-grocery-brands-comparison/.

LaBelle, Florida Weather Forecast For The Week




LABELLE, FL. -- This week's weather for downtown LaBelle, Florida and Hendry county.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Memorial Day - Fort Denaud Cemetery



LABELLE, FL. -- Memorial Day ceremonies will be observed at the Fort Denaud Cemetery in Hendry County on Memorial Day 2014.

360-degree panoramic photo of the Fort Denaud cemetery. Click on photo controls or keyboard to move left and right or to enlarge to full screen click upper right.

Sunday Photo - Port LaBelle Marina Panorama



LABELLE, FL. -- A 360-degree panoramic photograph of the Port LaBelle Marina on the Caloosahatchee river at LaBelle, Florida.

Use keyboard arrows or controls on photo to scan left and right and to zoom in and out around the marina bay and docks. Upper right box enlarges to full screen view.

(Photo: May 25, 2014, 9:30 a.m. using FinePix A500)

Five Years Ago - Live Broadcasting On Justin.tv


Watch live video from KQ4YM on TwitchTV

LABELLE, FL. -- Publisher Don Browne looked back on a broadcast he made live on Justin.TV/KQ4YM five years ago this week, on May 22, 2009.

Talking about the 1970s, playing "Fishheads" and other tunes during his daily "lifecasts" as a featured broadcaster on Justin.tv. His broadcasts garnered over three million views on Justin.tv (now Twitch.tv).

This week it was announced in the Wall Street Journal that Google may be in talks to buy Twitch.tv for $1 billion. Justin.tv and Twitch.tv was started by Justin Kan, the originator of "livecasting" when he wore a camera and broadcast his life live to millions of viewers.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Obituaries - Summeralls, Parr, Lawson

Nellie Joyce Summeralls, age 86, of LaBelle, passed away May 20, 2014 in LaBelle.

She was born May 21, 1927, in Pell City, Alabama, to the late George and the late Nellie (Ballard) Cruise. She married Earl "Buck" Summeralls. She was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother and great-great grandmother and will be missed by all who knew and loved her.

Survivors include her loving children; Earlene Kilburn, Carless Summeralls and wife Brenda, D. E. Summeralls and wife Ann, Carol Rivers and husband Jimmy, Jimmy Summeralls and wife Teresa, Paula Whitman and husband Howard, and April Rowe. Eighteen grandchildren, twenty-two great grandchildren, five step great grandchildren, two great-great grandchildren and three step great-great grandchildren.

Nellie was preceded in death by her loving husband, Earl A. "Buck" Summeralls; son, George Rodney Summeralls.

A Service celebrating her life will be held Saturday, May 24, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. in Akin-Davis Funeral Home with Pastor Roger Bradley officiating, where visitation will be held from 6-8 p.m. on Friday evening. Interment will be in Fort Denaud Cemetery immediately following the service.

Johnny Chris Parr, age 51, of Clewiston, FL passed away May 15, 2014 in Clewiston. 

He was born in Pahokee, FL on October 08, 1962 to Braxton Parr and Ethel Maples. Chris worked most his life at Clewiston Tires in Clewiston, FL. His passion was fishing and shooting pool. He was a life long resident of Clewiston, FL.
Survivors include his daughters: Crystal O'Donnal, Natasha Parr, Emily Martin, and son Dustin Wilkerson. One grandson Braydon Jackson.

Richard D. Lawson of LaBelle, born January 30 1951, died May 19, 2014, age 63.

Richard passed from this barren hunting ground to the Masters lease on May 19, 2014. Preceded in death by his father, David Lawson Sr., he is survived by his wife and best friend of thirty years, Katy (Kaye) Lawson, his loving mother Betty (Richard) Carter of Winter Haven, Twin Brother David (Peg) Lawson of Jackson Gap, Alabama, brother Van Lawson of Tifton, GA. Sons Chris (Lauren) Lawson and, James Lawson of Tampa. Grandchildren; Haley, Payton and Conner Lawson, many nieces and nephews and extended family.

A clan gathering and celebration of his life and memory will be held at his home at a later date.

Smiles And Giggles Dentist Arrested On Fraud Charges

Dr. Miranda Smith Caught In Medicaid Fraud Investigation

SPRING HILL, FL. -- Attorney General Pam Bondi’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, with the assistance of the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office, arrested Pasco County Dentist Dr. Miranda Smith on charges of Medicaid Provider fraud.

Dr. Smith, owner of Smiles and Giggles Dentistry for Children and Adults in Pasco County, allegedly billed Florida’s Medicaid program more than $140,000 in dental services which were either unauthorized or not provided.

The Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit initiated its investigation of Smith and her dental practice after receiving complaints about suspicious billing from parents and patients. According to the investigation, Smith billed Medicaid for x-rays, anesthesia, and other dental procedures that were not performed. Additionally, former patients alleged that Smith’s employees provided dental care, even though these employees were not licensed dentists.

One dissatisfied parent wrote in a review of the dentist's office, "WORST EXPERIENCE EVER! First we wonder how ONE doctor can see SO MANY PATIENTS A DAY, and then i was walking with my child back to the room with the assistant, and looked in another room to find an assistant DRILLING on a childs teeth. Needless to say, I told them that I was concerned with this, and I wasn't comfortable leaving the room, and then they told me that if I didn't leave the room, they would not see my son. Also, I was treated very rudely, and I asked to speak to the Doctor herself, and was treated very badly by her, when I questioned why there was someone besides her drilling on teeth, the Doctor walked out of the room without answering me, and then an assistant came back and told me that I was going to be referred elsewhere, after I had waited OVER 2 HOURS to be seen by the dentist."

According to the investigation, at least one minor patient's parent was told her child had eight cavities and would need to be sedated to perform urgent dental work. The parent received a second opinion from a dentist with more than two decades of experience. The dentist performed her own examination and found that the child had no cavities.

Another parent wrote, "After our first filling appointment, I thought this was a decent office, as they seemed to have been patient with my son that has extreme anxiety in regards to dentistry. The disappointing part came when after his next 6 month check up they tell me they now have to fill a tooth that I paid to have filled 6 months prior. Turns out they decided not to fill that one at that time, even though I paid for it and they billed my insurance for it."

Investigators also found that Dr. Smith and staff exhibited a pattern of pulling healthy teeth in an effort to sell patients dentures and make larger Medicaid claims.

Smith is being charged with two counts of Medicaid Fraud. If convicted, she could face up to 10 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines. The Attorney General’s Office of Statewide Prosecution will prosecute this case.

The Florida Department of Health’s Board of Dentistry voted on May 16, 2014, to suspend the license of Miranda W. Smith, D.D.S., in case number 2011-12390. This suspension will become a Final Order of the board within the next few business days.

Two Historic Homes To Move Down Main Street


LABELLE, FL. -- LaBelle Heritage Museum is ready for T. A. Youngblood And Sons Buildings Movers to hitch up the historic 1905 H. A. Rider Home and 1935 Law Office for their move to the museum's 360 North Bridge Street location on Tuesday, June 3. 

The two buildings will join the 1911 William H. Poole Store & Residence as the expanded LaBelle Heritage Museum complex. The Poole Building will house not only exhibits and archives relating to LaBelle's history and heritage but also the museum's administrative office. The Rider Buildings will become "snapshots in time" highlighting a typical home and small town lawyer's office during the early years of the 20th Century.

LaBelle Heritage Museum appreciates and acknowledges the assistance of Florida Bureau of Historic Preservation, H. L. Bennett & Associates, Oak Electric, LaBelle Pumbing, Cox Air Conditioning & Electric, Florida Department of Transportation, Hunter Tree Service, Hendry County Sheriff's Department, Comcast, FPL,CenturyLink, and many others who make the move possible.

Museum hours will remain 10 a.m to 1 p.m. on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at least through the end of June. The museum will schedule a Grand Opening of it's new and expanded complex after Labor Day.

Photo: Waddy Thompson

Free Movie For Blood Donors

LABELLE, FL. -- The Blood Mobile will be at the Florida Department of Health at the Hendry County Health Department, 1140 Pratt Blvd on June 5th from 10:00am to 2:00pm

All donors receive a voucher for a free movie ticket, a wellness checkup including blood pressure, temperature, iron count and cholesterol screening.

You must bring photo ID.

There is no substitute for human blood. When you donate blood with Florida's Blood Centers (Now called "OneBlood"), you are making an immediate contribution to the health and welfare of your community. Blood is needed by patients facing planned and unplanned medical procedures, such as trauma victims, cancer patients and premature babies. 

Blood is usually transfused into patients at local hospitals within 48 hours after you donate.

Alcohol Related Crash Sends Driver To Hospital

ALVA, FL. -- A truck overturned after an early morning crash in Alva and the driver charged with DUI after a crash into a tree and pole early Friday morning.

Brittan Michelle Head, 30 of Alva was traveling east on County Road 78 about 2:25 a.m. Friday when the 1997 Chevy Blazer being driven left the roadway and entered the south shoulder and ditch area.

The truck struck a palm tree and a utility pole head on, then overturned and came to final rest on its right side.

Head was airlifted to Lee Memorial Hospital with minor injuries. Charges were DUI with property damage and careless driving said FHP Trooper M J Smyrnios.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

High School Bus Crashes Into Car

Careless Driving Charged Against School Bus Driver
FORT MYERS, FL. -- A Lee county school bus driver has been charged with careless driving after his bus loaded with 38 students ran into a car stopped at an intersection.

The school bus driven by Michael Richard Gianetti III, age 57 was traveling south on Plantation Rd in the right turn lane, approaching Six Mile Cypress Pkwy. said the Florida Highway Patrol.

David Gross, 28 was stopped on Plantation Rd in the right turn lane facing south, in a 2013 Toyota Yaris waiting to make a right turn onto Six Mile Cypress Pkwy. 

Gianetti failed to stop for the Toyota and as a result struck the Toyota rear end with the school bus front end. After impact, both vehicles came to final rest facing south in the right turn lane. There were 38 high school students on the school bus. One of the students claimed injury.

Gross and passenger David Ray Pope, 29 had minor injuries.

Is Your Pool Safe For Swimming?

LABELLE, FL. -- With Memorial Day and summer just around the corner, the potential for illnesses and injuries in water-related activities increases as residents and visitors enjoy water activities.

In recognition of Recreational Water Illness and Injury Prevention Week, May 19 – 25, the Florida Department of Health in Hendry and Glades Counties encourages everyone to take precautions to stay healthy and safe during recreational water activities. 

Recreational Water Illness and Injury Prevention Week focuses on simple steps swimmers and pool operators can take to help ensure a healthy and safe swimming experience for everyone. Each year, mishandling pool chemicals leads to over 3,000 visits to emergency rooms across the nation. Every day, two children under 14 years of age die from drowning, making drowning the leading cause of injury death for children 1 to 4 years old.
"You and your family can have a healthier and safer summer by taking some simple precautions" said Pat Dobbins, Administrator & Health Officer for the FL Dept of Health in Hendry and Glades Counties.

Tips for water safety include:

*Use life jackets appropriately
*Provide continuous, attentive supervision for swimmers
*Know CPR
*Shower with soap before you swim to reduce the amount of bacteria in the water
*Prevent access to water when pool is not in use
*Follow directions on product labels and wear appropriate safety equipment when handling pool chemicals
*Check the chlorine and pH level before entering the pool, and don't swallow the water.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

$1,000 Reward Offered In Shooting Investigation

Man Injured in Drive-By Shooting
CLEWISTON, FL. -- On Tuesday, May 20, 2014, at approximately 8:24 pm, Hendry County Deputies responded to the area of Liberty and Fleetwood Street in the Twin Lakes area after reports of gun shots.

When deputies arrived on scene they spoke with witnesses on scene and it was found that shots had been fired into the home and 24-year old Alexander Bonilla had been shot and transported to the hospital.

A short time later, a second call was received reporting gun shots fired in another location on Joshua Ave. As deputies were responding to the area, one of the deputies was behind a vehicle driving erratically and driving fast. Deputies were able to make contact with the driver and identified him as 20 year old Angel Herrera. Herrera ran into the residence then came out a short time later to speak with deputies.

Investigators were given permission by the homeowner to enter the residence. Once inside Detectives found a weapon, ammunition and various drugs and narcotic equipment. At the time of questioning Herrera denied any involvement in the reported shooting.

Herrera was arrested and charged with Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Florida Delinquent, Possession of Ammunition by a Convicted Florida Delinquent, Possession of Marijuana with the Intent to Sell, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. He is currently being held in the Hendry County Jail on $36,500.00 bond

Hendry County Detectives are continuing to investigate this shooting and follow up on any and all leads. Anyone with information on the identity and whereabouts of the suspect(s) is asked to call Hendry County Sheriffs Office at 863-674-5600, 863-805-5000 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS (8477). All callers will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000.

Warning For Fishermen - Watch Your Lines

Monofilament Fishing Line Dangerous For Pelicans
LABELLE, FL. -- Fishing is an important part of the Florida lifestyle as well as its economy. In spite of the obvious benefits, this leisure-time activity, on occasion, can lead to problems for birds and other wildlife such as sea turtles and manatees. 

According to Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission biologists, monofilament fishing line and fishing hooks can entangle these animals, leading to injury and even death.

The brown pelican is one species that is especially impacted by monofilament line. These birds frequently spend time looking for an easy meal at piers and other fishing hotspots, where they are often hooked accidently when trying to grab bait off an angler’s line. Additionally, discarded monofilament line hanging from trees, piers and other structures can ensnare these birds. Once entangled, pelicans can have a difficult time flying and feeding.

“It is not uncommon to find dead pelicans entangled with fishing line and hooks,” said FWC biologist Ricardo Zambrano. “If they are not rescued, these birds may suffer for days before succumbing to injury or starvation.”

Here are some simple things people can do to help protect brown pelicans and other wildlife:
Properly dispose of monofilament line. Store unwanted line safely and securely until it can be placed in a recycling bin.
Don’t leave fishing line unattended, as pelicans may be tempted to steal the bait on the end of the line.
Avoid casting near trees, utility lines and other areas where line may get caught.
Check tackle frequently for frayed line that may easily break.
Do not feed pelicans or other wildlife, since it encourages them to approach fishing boats, piers and anglers. If available, use fish-scrap repositories. If they are not available, discard fish scraps in a garbage can or at home.

If you do accidentally hook a pelican, you should avoid cutting the line. Gently remove the hook if you feel confident you can do so without causing harm to yourself or the bird. If you cannot safely remove the hook and line from the pelican, contact a local wildlife rehabilitator. 

For a list of wildlife rehabilitators in your area, contact any of the FWC’s five regional offices or visitMyFWC.com/Conservation and select “How You Can Conserve” then “Wildlife Assistance.”

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Obituaries - Joseph Yeomans, Robert Hammett

Joseph Millard Yeomans, age 88, of LaBelle, passed away May 15, 2014 in LaBelle.
He was born Aug. 17, 1925 in LaBelle, FL, to the late Theodore R. Yeomans and the late Thelma A. (Booth) Yeomans. He served in the Navy during World War II. He was a lifelong resident of LaBelle and a member of Community Harvest Worship Center.

Survivors include his daughters: Martha Lavonne Yeomans (Orren) Harris of Oklahoma, and Shelma Gaskin of LaBelle, eight: grandchildren, fourteen great-grandchildren, nephews: Terry Yeomans and Ted Lanier, nieces: Cheryl Yeomans Johnson and Rennie Leitz and special cousins: Faye and Kay Cochran.

He was preceded in death by his wife of forty-two years, Lois Yeomans, daughter: Evelyn, son, Charles (C.T.), grandson: Ruben Zavala, brother: Elmer Yeomans and sister: Edna Lanier.

A memorial services will be held Saturday, May 24, 2014, 11:00 a.m. at Community Harvest Worship Center in LaBelle with Pastor L. W. Howard officiating. Military Honors will be conducted by American Legion Post #130-LaBelle. All friends, family and aquaintances are welcome to attend.

Robert Charles Hammett, age 71, of LaBelle, passed away May 16, 2014 in Fort Myers. He was born July 23, 1942 in Houston, TX, to the late Clyde Alfred Hammett and the late Mildred Louise (Nolen) Hammett. He graduated in 1960 from Ft. Calhoun High School in Nebraska . 

Robert was a veteran of the Army and served during Vietnam. He was a longtime resident of LaBelle.

He is survived by three daughters: Cami Kulwicki (Dave), Kathy Lipp (Ron), Maria Niccoli Fotheringham (Michael), son: Jonathan Hammett (Malinda), daughter in law: Leanna Hammett, twenty grandchildren and seven great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife: Diana Hammett, daughter, Malia "Bunny" Niccoli and son: Robert Charles Hammett, CWO3

Visitation will be held Friday, May 23, 2014, from 10:00-11:00 a.m. with Funeral Services to follow at Akin-Davis Funeral Home, LaBelle with Pastor Clifford Avery officiating. Military Honors and Interment will follow at Fort Denaud Cemetery in LaBelle. In Lieu of Flowers, donations can be made to American Legion Post#130 in LaBelle or The Wounded Warrior Project.

Beware Of Concert Ticket Seller Scams

Watch Out For Tricky Deals In Concert Ticket Sales

Music fans should be aware of a number of potential pitfalls when buying tickets from both primary ticket sellers such as Ticketmaster, resale marketplaces and ticket brokers, says the Florida Alliance for Consumer Protection. 

If fans are not careful, they may end up unknowingly buying non-transferable tickets that cannot be resold or even given away, buying fraudulent tickets or buying tickets from disreputable sellers.

The organization says in order to protect yourself from these anti-consumer practices, all concert goers should heed the following:

Read the Fine Print: Concerts and sports teams are increasingly selling restricted tickets, also known as paperless or Credit Card Entry tickets, which require the buyer to show up at the stadium and present the purchasing credit card and photo ID. The fine print indicates these tickets are nontransferable and can't be given away as gifts. Some venues also limit the number of tickets you can buy and may cancel your order if you exceed the max.

Look into Presales: Popular artists, venues and ticket vendors tend to allocate large blocks of tickets to fan club members, VIPs, premium credit card holders and personal acquaintances, leaving only a small portion of tickets to the general public. For example, a 2011 Justin Bieber concert in Nashville only made 1,001 out of 14,000 seats available during the public on-sale.

Beware of Hidden Price Floors: When purchasing resale tickets on secondary sites, check multiple sources to make sure you get the best price. Some artists, teams and ticket vendors dictate a price floor for ticket resale and therefore, may not have tickets available for the true market value. For example, the NFL's official TicketExchange through Ticketmaster will not allow tickets to be sold below a designated value.

Use Reliable Sellers: If you're unsure whether a company is legitimate, check its ratings with the Better Business Bureau. Also be sure to double check if you are buying tickets from the box office, official ticket agent or a reseller. Some ticket resellers hide the fact that they are a reseller or even pose to look like the official ticket agent. If purchasing from a ticket broker, check to see if it is a member of the National Association of Ticket Brokers, who's Code of Ethics requires members to adhere to basic consumer protections.

Check your ticket vendor's guarantee policy: For example, websites like StubHub,TicketExchange, Ace Tickets and members of the National Association of Ticket Brokers guarantee every ticket sold on their sites and will replace them or provide refunds to consumers if they receive the wrong tickets, their tickets are invalid or an event is cancelled.

Buy with a Credit Card: Regardless of where you buy tickets, be sure to use a credit card so you can dispute any unfair or unauthorized charges. Before entering your credit card information online, double check the company's URL to ensure you don't get duped by an imposter and be sure the site has "https://" at the beginning of its address.

Check if the Price Includes Additional Fees: Unlike airline tickets, which are now required by law to disclose all taxes and additional fees upfront, the ticket price listed at the start of the purchasing process will likely not be your final price. If you are shopping between multiple websites to compare price, make sure you know if you are comparing ticket prices that include fees.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Tai Chi Class - Moving For Better Balance Graduates


LaBelle Tai Ji Quan Students Complete Classes 

LABELLE, FL. -- LaBelle area students completed a 26 session class in Tai Ji Quan - Moving For Better Balance last week at the L.J. Nobles Senior Center. Tai Ji Quan is popularly known as Tai Chi and is the world's most popular exercise.

The course taught in LaBelle was developed 10 years ago by Dr. Fuzhong Li of the Oregon Research Institute specifically to prevent falls in older adults and has been recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for daily use by adults. Falling is the leading cause of death and injury to older adults.

After attending a 13 week course to improve balance and strength and to prevent falls, the following received certificates of completion on Wednesday May 14:

Edna Tripp, Brenda Pearson, Loraine Rawls, John Ledeaux, Christine O'Bannon, Janice Davidson, Sherry King.

(Also shown in photo at left, Sherry Young, Health and Wellness Coordinator for Area Agency on Aging for Southwest Florida, and at right, Don Browne, certified instructor Tai Ji Quan - Moving for Better Balance.)

Tai Chi classes are continuing at the Senior Center on Cowboy Way in LaBelle on Tuesday and Thursday at 10 a.m. All previous students from 2013 and 2014 are welcome and encouraged to attend any or all of the one-hour sessions.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Drivers Now Can Update With Google Waze App

Florida Joins Google "Waze" To Bring Real-Time Traffic To Drivers

The Florida Department of Transportation has reached an agreement to join in a data sharing partnership with Waze (www.waze.com), a free navigation app that uses information from millions of drivers to outsmart traffic in real-time. 

At the time of its acquisition by Google in June 2013, Waze had attracted more than 50 million users

Waze is a free navigation app for iOS, Android and Windows smartphones that calculates real-time road conditions based on traffic data from local drivers, known as “Wazers.” Wazers report traffic pileups, road hazards, construction sites and more, and their GPS patterns build and modify an up-to-the-minute accurate local map as they drive. This information is then used to calculate the fastest routes for any destination and help citizens avoid road congestion.

The Waze smart phone application is available for free from the App Store on iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch or at http://www.itunes.com/appstore; the Google Play Market; or by visiting http://m.waze.com from a smart phone. In addition to real-time, crowd-sourced traffic data, Waze offers a number of hands-free features, such as:

• Voice-guided turn-by-turn navigation
• Voice-activated user reporting of road hazards, construction, incidents, and congestion;
• Voice commands to user-set “Favorite Places” like “Home” or “Office;” and
• Automated verbal notification of upcoming incidents or conditions.

FDOT and Waze will non-exclusively cross-license their traffic data to each other to enhance each partner’s ability to provide needed traffic information to the traveling public.

Florida 511 system has been providing real-time traffic information on Florida’s interstates, toll roads and major metropolitan roadways. Waze data will augment data collected by FDOT to provide traffic information on crashes, congestion, construction, as well as providing segment travel times.

There are four ways for motorists to receive updates on traffic and roadway conditions via Florida 511:

• Call 511 toll free for updates in English and Spanish.
• Visit FL511.com for interactive roadway maps showing traffic congestion and crashes, travel times and traffic camera views.
• Download the free Florida 511 mobile app available on Google Play and iTunes.
• Follow one of the 12 statewide, regional or roadway-specific feeds on Twitter.

Job Openings: From EMS To Highway

LABELLE, FL. -- Hendry County has a number of vacant job positions:

Job Title -   Closing Date
Emergency Medical Technician May 21, 2014
Paramedic May 21, 2014
Camp Counselor -- Seasonal May 16, 2014
Highway Maintenance Technician II May 30, 2014
Heavy Equipment Operator I May 30, 2014
Treatment Plant Operator May 30, 2014

Hendry County Jobs website is at:
http://www.hendryfla.net/job_postings.php

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Bear Killed As It Attempts To Cross I-75

Mother Bear Killed, Two Cubs At Large In Area

NAPLES, FL. -- A female 285-pound bear was killed early Tuesday morning as the bear and two large cubs tried to cross I-75 in Collier County and entered into the paths of two vehicles.

Michael Bradford, 56 of Fort Myers in a 2011 Mustang traveled south on Interstate 75 on the southbound center lane at 5:45 a.m.. It was cloudy, dark, and there was no street light. 

A 285 lbs. female black bear crossed the southbound lanes traveling east and entered the vehicle's path creating an obstruction without warning. The Ford's left front struck the bear's left side causing the vehicle's front airbags to deploy. Bradford brought the vehicle to a controlled final rest faced south on the median south of the area of collision. 

The female bear continued to enter the median, crawled under the cable barrier, and succumbed to her injuries. 

A 2006 Toyota Corolla, driven by Reuben Hernandez, 55 of Lehigh Acres traveled south on Interstate 75 on the southbound outside lane where there were 2 male black bear cubs approximately 200 lbs. each on the west shoulder. One cub then attempted to cross the southbound lanes traveling east and entered the vehicle's path creating an obstruction without warning. The Toyota's right front struck the cub's head while traveling on the southbound outside lane. The vehicle was brought to a controlled final rest on the west paved shoulder south of the subsequent area of collision. 

The cub then traveled west onto the west shoulder, rejoined the other cub, and crossed the berm into the Wilshire Lakes development at Fairhaven Lane. Southbound traffic backed up and three secondary rear end collisions occurred. A FWC biologist responded to remove the dead female bear. The two cubs are still at large in the area. If the bear cubs are spotted please call FWC at 1-888-404-3922.

Cheryl Waters Dies At 67

Cheryl L. Waters, born October 15, 1946 died May 9, 2014. Cheryl was born and raised in Clewiston.

She is preceded in death by her father, Junior Waters and her sister, Margaret McElroy. She is survived by her mother, Margaret Lucille Waters, of Clewiston; her sister, Bobbie Spratt (Joe) of LaBelle; nephew, Patrick McElroy of Clewiston, niece Lane M. Pool of Clewiston; nephew, Jim Spratt (Sharon) of Tallahassee; niece, Beth Spratt of Tallahassee; great niece, Kadyn Pool of LaBelle/Clewiston; great twins James and Laura Spratt of Tallahassee and a host of cousins and friends.

Cheryl worked for Hendry County School Board for 18 ½ years. Her most recent position was an Administrative Assistant for the maintenance department. In her younger years she was active in youth softball and holds the honor of being one of the first female umpires in the State of Florida.

She was an active member of First Baptist Church of Clewiston. She has served on the finance committee for serveral years. In lieu of flowers, contributions to the First Baptist Church's Bible ministry would be welcomed. She will be missed by many

Funeral services will be held Tuesday, May 13, 2014 at 11:00 am at First Baptist Church of Clewiston, Clewiston with Dr. Todd Buck officiating. Interment will be in Ridgelawn Cemetery, Clewiston. Visitation was Monday from 6:00-8:00 pm at Akin-Davis Funeral Home, Clewiston, FL.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Teen Seriously Injured In Morning Crash Into Fence

LABELLE, FL. -- Layni A. Challender, 16 of Fort Denaud was seriously injured in a 6:35 a.m. crash Monday morning in Lee County.

A 2001 Ford F350 was westbound on CR 78 (N River Rd) when suddenly, the driver crossed the centerline of the roadway, then over corrected. The front of the one-ton pickup truck began to yaw to the right in the westbound lane and the driver lost control as the truck departed the roadway, which then struck a fence at a property at 23621 N River Road. 

The truck came to final rest north of the fence after it overturned onto its roof facing, the truck facing northeast. She was charged with failure to maintain single lane. She was transported to Lee County's Health Park.

Secret Giant Monkey Breeding Company Owners Hiding?

Who's Behind The Company Breeding 3,200 Monkeys For Animal Experiments?

LABELLE, FL. -- A primate breeding company hoping to build a facility for 3,200 monkeys in Hendry County, on the border of Lee County; is apparently being very careful to hide who owns and manages the company's land, which is called 'Oak Creek Hammock'.

The company, Soflo Ag; has mailing addresses listed, which turn out to be only Post Office Boxes at the UPS store in Lehigh Acres, FL.

It is believed the new captive monkey facility, will be used for breeding and quarantining Macaque monkeys imported from Mauritius, an island southeast of Africa, where the monkeys are bred. The offspring are separated from the mothers, and sold to export companies, in order to bypass regulations prohibiting the buying and selling of wild-caught monkeys.

After being sold, the young monkeys will end up in facilities like the ones in Hendry County. They will eventually be sold to universities and private biological research companies, who use young monkeys for experimental uses.

Aside from Humans, the Macaques are the most widespread Primate Genus.

Controversy has arisen in recent weeks after well-known TV personality, Jane Velez-Mitchell, broadcast a Cable TV show on HLN about the proposed Hendry County monkey breeding facility. The program questioned who has governmental authority to authorize breeding facilities for Primates; allowing them to be imported, sold, and used for animal experiments.

Last year, a company called Soflo Ag bought 34 acres of land about a mile south of State Road 80 at the end of Townsend Canal Road, along the Bedman Creek, and across the canal from Lee County. This property will be used to house monkeys, to be sold for experimentation to universities and private laboratories.

Hendry County already has a similar, but much larger primate facility. 'Primate Products' rests on 640 acres, a square mile of land north of Immokalee, and located on the Hendry and Collier County line.

A. Hopkins Kennemer, Jr. of Gulf Stream, FL in Palm Beach County, was the seller of the residential zoned land. He sold it for $65,000 in February, 2013. The land is now planned as 'Oak Creek Hammock'; and was reviewed by Hendry County Zoning Officials, and the County Commissioners.

It is located in an isolated area just north of homes, and 2.5 acres residential lots in a Hendry County subdivision. There is limited fire and police protection in the Hendry County subdivision, because of limited access to the rural area and dirt roads leading there.

In 2013, 'Oak Creek Hammock' received permission from the South Florida Water Management District, to pump 6.5 million gallons of water yearly; to provide drinking water for 3,200 monkeys, and irrigation for 3 acres of landscaping.  (See SFWMD permission letter with photo of property)

Last month, 'Oak Creek Hammock' received an environmental resource permit from the South Florida Water Management District, to modify or build a storm water management system at the property. The 34-acre property has also reportedly been fenced in.

Three Monkey Companies Operating Out Of A UPS Store Mailbox

Attempting to find the actual land owners, has led to a dead end. Soflo Ag LLC, the company on the deed, is owned by P2B2 LLC; according to the State of Florida Secretary of State's Office. Both company addresses are listed as 5781 Lee Blvd. in Lehigh Acres. That address is a UPS store.

But, P2B2 LLC is owned by XII LLC. And that company's address, is also a mail box in the UPS store. At this point, the chain of ownership turns to either fraud, error, or something very unusual going on. In 2012, a 'Zubair Khan' is listed as a representative of XII LLC, in the company's annual filing with the Secretary of State Office.

The Secretary of State's Office said today, that there is no record of XII LLC. Soflo LLC's agent (for purposes of filing applications and getting government permits for development), is Rock Enterprises in LaBelle, FL.

Who Is Primera and 'Primera Management'?

Primera's response to the community residents' concerns, appeared in a local newspaper on May 1, 2014. A 'Primera statement' to the 'Hendry County Board of Commissioners and Residents'; disparaged press reports, Jane Velez-Mitchell, and animal protection organization statements, including the Humane Society of the United States.

The author of the lengthy letter stated: "The unbalanced and shock value style of reporting portrayed in the media by various animal rights extremists, reflects a prejudicial and biased image of Primera."

The letter was signed by 'Primera Management', with no name of any official attached. A search for Primera with the Florida Secretary of State Office, shows no information or registration for the name 'Primera'. A Google search also shows no information on Primera, as well.
Some investigations have speculated that 'PreLabs, Inc.'  and 'PrimGen' of Hines, IL are behind the monkey breeding enterprise. An employee named 'Mohammad Khan' (same last name as Zubair Khan) registered the online domain names 'prelabs.com', 'primgen.com' and 'sofloag.com'.

Several species of Macaques are used extensively in animal testing; particularly in the 'neuroscience of visual perception' and the 'visual system' fields.

Nearly all (73%-100%) pet and captive Macaques, are carriers of the Herpes B virus. This virus is harmless to Macaques. Infections of Humans however, while rare, are potentially fatal; a risk that makes Macaques unsuitable as pets.
Previous Story (With Video) On Monkey Breeding Facilities In Hendry County

Story: Don Browne and Barbara Ann Cooper. Photo: courtesy Skamnelis and Wikipedia

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Eva Glidden Dies At 94

Eva Catherine Glidden, age 94, of LaBelle, passed away May 6, 2014 in Lehigh Acres. She was born April 5, 1920 in Bargersville, IN, to the late Sampson C. and the late Ethel Jane (Day) Myars.

She is survived by two sons: William A. Robinson (Donna) of LaBelle, FL, Douglas M. Glidden (Faye), eight grandchildren, nineteen great grandchildren and three great-great grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband of 53 years Wayne O. Glidden, daughter: Sandra L. Jones, brothers: Bob Myars and Junior Myars.

Funeral services will be held Tuesday, May 13, 2014 at 11:00 am at Lee Memorial Park Mausoleum Chapel, Fort Myers with Rev. Frank Deerey officiating. Entombment will be in Lee Memorial Park Cemetery, Fort Myers. Visitation will be Monday from 06:00-08:00 pm at Akin-Davis Funeral Home, LaBelle, FL.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made in Eva's memory to the Caloosa Humane Society, P.O. Box 2337, LaBelle, FL 33975.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

LaBelle, Florida Weather from Heritage Museum


Christian Men Gather For Spaghetti

LABELLE, FL. -- LaBelle Assembly of God is hosting The Gathering of Christian Men on Monday, May 19 at 7:00 PM. All men are welcome.

There is a free dinner which will consist of Italian cuisine. Spaghetti with meat sauce and the Italian sausage, garlic bread, and a toss salad with Italian dressing. Served with iced tea. 

There will be a special Devotional speaker.

LaBelle Assembly of God is located on Fraser Avenue across from the Edward A. Upthegrove Elementary school.  For more information call 675-0900.

Friday, May 09, 2014

Famous Yacht Steam Engine Moved For Display



Warren Engine Based On Nikola Tesla Patents

LABELLE, FL. -- City of LaBelle crews moved the E. C. Warren rotary steam engine from its former location at LaBelle Heritage Museum's 150 South Lee Street site to the LaBelle Wharf across from Barron Library on May 5 as part of the LaBelle Heritage Museum relocation to the Downtown LaBelle Historic District. 

The engine, built by E. C. Warren in 1938 based on earlier patents awarded to world-famous electrical and mechanical engineer Nikola Tesla who was belatedly acknowledged as the inventor of wireless radio telephony shortly before his death in 1943, replaced the 500 HP reciprocating steam engines originally installed in the 1917 Herreshoff Manufacturing Company commuter yacht Navette, built for renowned financier J. P. "Jack" Morgan to enable him to comfortably commute from his Long Island estate to his Wall Street office, when Edward C. Warren purchased the sleek shallow-draft 114 ft. vessel some years after Morgan's death.

Warren and his family moved to the LaBelle area in the early 1950s. 

Plans call for the construction of a shelter for the engine, similar to the colorful riverfront gazebo shown in the background, with a plaque highlighting the history of the Navette and its rotary steam engines that directs interested visitors to LaBelle Heritage Museum to view the original Herreshoff plans for the Navette, Warren's 1938 plans for the rotary steam engine, a model of the Navette as it once looked and other memorabilia from the Navette, and additional information on E. C. Warren and the Warren family as well as learning more about Nikola Tesla.

The Best Reasons For Getting Rid Of Biofuels

Biofuels Will Never Efficiently Replace Conventional Energy Sources

LABELLE, FL. -- Despite government subsidies in the billions of dollars and glowing biofuel industry proclamations, growing plants to turn into fuel is a foolhardy and expensive proposition, certainly not a workable solution to energy needs around the world says author Robert Bryce.

Robert Bryce, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute writes this week in BloombergView that "Burning food for fuel is simply a bad idea. In 2012, roughly 40 percent of the entire U.S. corn crop was diverted into ethanol production. U.S. motorists now burn about as much corn in their cars as is fed to all the country’s chickens, turkeys, cattle, pigs and fish combined.

Ike Kiefer, writing for Strategic Studies Quarterly, a U.S. Air Force Journal said our nation's biofuels program is accelerating global warming, whiile giving our competitors and enemies, who don't subsidize biofuel programs, cheaper energy and reducing America's economy to a permanent state of recession.

Kiefer says biofuels bring “an anemic power density of only 0.3 watts per square meter.” But solar photovoltaic panels are about 6 watts per square meter or 20 times more; an average oil well produces 27 watts per square meter; and an average nuclear plant is more than 50 watts per square meter.

The very low power density of plant derived fuels is because of the limits of photosynthesis, the process that converts sunlight into chlorophyll and into energy.

Kiefer says the U.S. would need 700 million acres of corn, about 37 percent of the U.S. landmass, and three times the current amount of all croplands if we were to use ethanol instead of oil for transportation. Making biodiesel fuel from soybeans to replace oil would take more than 3 billion acres, more acres than exists in all the U.S.

Bryce says, "Despite tens of billions in taxpayer money that have been thrown at corn ethanol, soy diesel, algae and the rest, the U.S. economy, and more particularly the U.S. military, has gained nothing."

He cites a study showing biofuels production doubled from 2006 to 2011, but the amount of actual energy produced is only about two-thirds of the heat energy of oil, but required 247 million acres of cropland (more than twice the size of California) to produce, and biofuels are only providing less than one-half of one percent of the world's energy.

Bryce summarizes his article saying, "The objective facts about biofuels -- their low power density, their effect on food prices, their inability to provide even a small fraction of our energy needs -- have been known for years. When it comes to energy production, we need density, and biofuel production is not dense. It diverts arable land from food production and from nature. Biofuel production is the antithesis of green.

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Penny Stock Company Building Biomass Fertilizer Plant

Four Cents Can Buy A Piece Of The Biomass Industry
CLEWISTON, FL. -- Leveraging lots of million dollar loan packages and help from government agencies, BioNitrogen Holdings Corp., a "cleantech" company that a utilizes recently patented technology to build environmentally-friendly plants that convert biomass into urea fertilizer, will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony at 10 am on May 14, 2014, at the site of the company's initial plant in Hendry County, Florida. 

Among inducement initiated by Hendry county, the County was awarded a Florida Department of Transportation Economic Development Fund grant of $848,122 for the construction of turn lanes and an access road to the Weekley Industrial Park in Clewiston, the proposed plant site.

Additionally, approval was received for up to $312,000 in Qualified Target Industry ("QTI") tax refunds from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. The QTI tax refunds will be awarded over the course of five years.

$9.6 million has been allocated by the Florida New Markets Capital Investment Program. The NMTC investment will be to Hendry BN Construction & Fertilizer Services, LLC, a newly formed subsidiary of BioNitrogen Holdings Corp. The proceeds of the financing will be used for capital equipment, engineering, closing costs and improvements to the Hendry County site, including feedstock and fertilizer services and related equipment.

Hendry BN will operate on approximately 15 acres at the Weekley Industrial Park and provide mulch, feedstock, construction and fertilizer services to the site, Hendry County and surrounding areas.

Already having racked up a net loss of $2.1 million according to the latest published earnings, company officials predict five full time jobs within the coming year. The stock is currently selling for four cents a share.

But, always hopeful in a county with the highest unemployment number in Florida, Hendry county officials were quoted in recent news releases saying:

"We are excited about this investment and are hopeful this is the beginning of our county starting to diversify economically while creating new job potential," said Karson Turner, Chairman of the Hendry county Board of County Commissioners. "This is an important project to the County. Our Economic Development Council, County administration and Industrial Development Authority have worked closely together to create attractive incentives to further induce BioNitrogen to build a plant here in our County."

"This is Hendry County's largest project announcement in 50 years," said Gregg Gillman, President of the Hendry County Economic Development Council. "I look forward to seeing this new facility take shape and create jobs for Hendry County residents.

The ceremony will be held at the Weekley Brothers Industrial Park located at 3013 Evercane Road in Clewiston. Senior management of BioNitrogen and state and local officials will be in attendance and will discuss the plans for Hendry County.

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Rehab/Homeless Group Gets Hotel For $1 Million

What's Next For The Port LaBelle Inn?

PORT LABELLE, FL. -- Hendry County official records indicate the Port LaBelle Inn has been sold to SMH Properties of Southwest Florida, Inc., a non-profit headed by officials of Saint Matthew House of Collier County, best known for running alcohol and drug residential programs and homeless shelters and kitchens.

SMH's board of directors include Rick Fumo, Mark Jackson, Ron Gustason, and Joe Trachtenberg, all of Naples, Fl.

Edward J. Yasechko, a wealthy Ohio truck stop owner agreed to sell the Port LaBelle in to the group for $1,050,000. The sale closed on April 30. Yasechko paid $900,000 almost six years ago for the nearly 35-year old building, and then invested considerable amounts of money to rehabilitate the aging property with it's tennis/basketball court, pool and also purchased an adjoining plot of pasture land with a large storage building.

The Hendry property appraiser has a tax value of $652,000 for the hotel and about $18,000 for the pastures.

The hotel includes a restaurant and bar and about four dozen rooms. The new owners have told employees that the bar will be closed in the next several months. Trachtenberg had previously announced that there were lots of repairs needed at the facility and they would be undertaking projects to bring the building up to par.

State inspectors say the hotel elevator has no current license to operate and the restaurant has several food safety violations outstanding.

The Saint Matthews House group tried unsuccessfully last year to get a county zoning special exception to use the hotel for a drug/alcohol rehab facility. But, as the property is zoned for recreational use, the county commission and zoning officials declined to go along with the request.

Obituaries - Keevan, Mihalik

Thomas Edward Keevan, age 84, of LaBelle, passed away May 2, 2014 in Bay Pines.

He was born Sep. 11, 1929 in Dover, NH, to the late Leroy Francis and the late Mary (Lawless) Keevan. He retired from the US Army as a Master Sergeant. Thomas was a Veteran of Korea & Vietnam and was a recipient of the Bronze Star, The Meritorious Service Award and several other honors. He retired to LaBelle in 1987.

Survivors include his son: Thomas (Stacy) Keevan II of Atlanta, GA, daughters: Patricia Borst-Gibbons (Herbert Clanton) of Tampa, Ann (Greg) Starkey of LaPlata, MD and Jean (Matthew) Floss of Tampa, ten grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife, Fujiko Keevan in 2011.

Military Honors will be held Thursday, May 8, 2014, 11:00 a.m. at Sarasota National Cemetery, Sarasota. Interment will follow at Sarasota National Cemetery.

Steve Mihalik, age 98, passed away May 2, 2014. He was born January 2, 1916 in Chicago, IL, to the late Anna Ponca Mihalik and the late Stefan Mihalik. He worked in St. Joseph, Michigan and Hialeah, Florida, retiring to Sebring in 1980.

Steve was preceded in death by his wife of 57 years, Myrtle Normoyle Mihalik, a brother, William Mihalik and a sister, Olga Lepsi.

He is survived by his daughters, Betty Mihalik of Sebring and Kay (Carey) Brasecker of LaBelle, Florida. He is also survived by a brother, Albert Mihalik of Stevensville, Michigan and a sister, Anne Benko of Bridgman, Michigan.

He was a WW II vet and a member of the Knights of Columbus and the Moose. He was an avid bowler for many years and always had a garden of tomatoes and strawberries.

Monday, May 05, 2014

Toilet Paper Maker Makes Over Firehouse Bathroom

OKEECHOBEE, FL. -- Charmin, the well known toilet paper brand, is taking a moment to help firefighters by making their firehouses a little bit homier, giving the Okeechobee County firehouse a revamped bathroom. 

Okeechobee Fire Department is one of five firehouses across the nation that received a mini bathroom makeover. 

After recently donating a year’s supply of toilet paper to Okeechobee Fire Department, Charmin worked with local contractors to take the firehouses’ restrooms from homely to homey. In addition to updating the bathroom features, Charmin incorporated elements inspired by firefighters’ own homes.

The five firehouses were selected from a list of 50 fire stations that received a one-year donation of toilet paper, as part of the Charmin Relief Project. Charmin picked the stations by asking their consumers to share stories through Facebook and Twitter of their local firehouse’s bathrooms.

Early Morning Crash Kills Driver

Truck Leaves Road And Hits Tree

FORT MYERS, FL. -- Rojelio Villarreal, 22 of Lehigh Acres died in a crash this morning at 1:44 a.m. in Lehigh Acres, Fl.

A 2010 Chevy Silverado pickup truck was traveling northbound on Homestead Road S north of Sunrise Boulevard when for unknown reasons, Villarreal lost control of the truck which slowly began to drift in a northwest direction, and traveled through the travel lanes of Homestead Road S and onto the west shoulder of Homestead Road S. 

Subsequently, the front portion of the truck collided with a tree reported FHP Trooper Danny Diaz and homicide investigator Corporal Juan Quintana.

Burrowing Owls On Audubon Program

Dan Tudor to Present Burrowing Owls Program

LABELLE, FL. -- Hendry-Glades Audubon will host a covered dish dinner and program on Monday, May 12 at the Cooperative Extension, Dallas Townsend Building 1085 Pratt Blvd. in LaBelle. 

Bring a side dish or dessert to share for the dinner at 6 p.m. followed by a free program at 7 p.m.

Dan Tudor, professional recording artist and pianist, will present an entertaining program of photos of the “Burrowing Owls of Cape Coral” at 7 p.m. . Dan is an annual presenter at the Cape Coral Burrowing Owl Festival. His photos and interviews have been featured in numerous magazines and newspapers.

Motorcyclist Dies After Crash

SEBRING, FL. -- Kleb K. Mohbolde, 20 of Sebring died after a motorcycle crash Sunday about 2:15 p.m. on Martin Luther King Blvd.

His 2007 Honda 1000RR was southbound on Martin Luther King Boulevard as a 2012 Kia Sorento, driven by Betty J. Jones, 68 of Sebring was stopped facing  eastbound at the stop sign on Sunniland Drive at the intersection of Martin Luther King Boulevard.

The Kia proceeded into the intersection to make a left turn onto Martin Luther King Boulevard as the motorcycle failed to stop for the stop sign on Martin Luther King Boulevard at the intersection of Sunniland Drive.

The front of the cycle collided with the left front corner of the Kia. Bolden separated from the cycle on impact and came to final rest in the intersection, southwest of the cycle which came to final rest at area of collision, facing in a northeasterly direction in the middle of the intersection.

Bolden expired at the Florida Heartland hospital at 3:05 p.m.

Sunday, May 04, 2014

James Chelius Dies In Bicycle Crash

FORT MYERS, FL. -- James Chelius, age 61 of Fort Myers died today as a result of injuries sustained while on a bicycle ride at 11:15 a.m. on Daniels Parkway.

A 2004 Volvo driven by Denny Rager, 40 of Fort Myers was westbound in the center through lane of CR-876 (Daniels Pkwy.) approaching Cross Creek Blvd.  as Chelius was westbound on a bicycle in the right turn lane of CR-876 approaching Cross Creek Blvd. 

Chelius began to travel in a southwesterly direction across westbound CR-876 failing to yield to right of way same direction traffic. Subsequently, the Volvo struck the rear of the bicycle. Chelius' bicycle came to final rest facing slightly southeast in the center through lane of CR-876. 

The bicycle continued west before coming to final rest facing slightly southwest in the center through lane just east of the intersection of CR-876 and Cross Creek Blvd. The Volvo came to a controlled stop facing west in the inside through lane of CR-876.
Charges are pending conclusion of the crash investigation. Chelius was transported to Lee Memorial Hospital.

Chelius was wearing a bicycle helmet at the time of the incident according to FHP Trooper K. Viveiros and Homicide Investigator Cpl A. Close.

Teen Crashes ATV Into SUV - Serious Injuries

Serious Injuries To Teen After ATV Collision Into Another Teen's Vehicle
CLEWISTON, FL. --  A teenager driving an ATV is in serious condition after a crash at 12:53 p.m. Saturday.

A Honda all terrain vehicle was northbound on North Romero Street in the Montura Ranch Estate community of Hendry county as a 2001 Izuzu Rodeo was westbound on Bald Cypress. 

Alejandro Jose Acosta, 17 came to the intersection of northbound Romero Street and Bald Cypress on the ATV and failed to yield to oncoming westbound traffic, then proceeded (north) into the intersection. 

Julian Caballero, 15 in the Isuzu swerved to avoid colliding with the ATV. As a result, the right front of the ATV struck the left side of the Izuzu, in the westbound lane. Post collision, the Izuzu began traveling partially in the westbound lane and partially on the north grassy shoulder. 

Caballero then lost control as the vehicle began to travel southwest across both the east and westbound lanes of the roadway and came to rest on the south grassy shoulder. It was moved to the northwest corner of the intersection prior to FHP Trooper T. Parks' arrival. 

Acosta was later transported to Lee Memorial Hospital and is in stable condition. He was not wearing a helmet and was charged with failure to yield right of way.

Saturday, May 03, 2014

Panoramic Photograph Of Living Waters Worship Center



LABELLE, FL --  360 degree panoramic photo of the oak trees on the grounds of the Living Waters Center on SR80 at Birchwood Parkway in Port LaBelle, Fl.

Click on the photo, use keyboard arrow keys to move it or use the controls on the photo to zoom and move it.

Photo taken May 3, 2014

Friday, May 02, 2014

360 Degree Panoramic Photo Of Laurel Oaks Pond



LABELLE, FL. -- A panoramic photograph of the pond in the Port LaBelle Laruel Oaks community. Click on your keyboard arrows or the navigation key above to move left or right for a 360 degree view around the Laurel Oaks greenbelt.

Click on + to zoom in, - to zoom out. Click arrow at lower right to see on map. Click box at upper right or "Views" at bottom of photo to see full size on Google.

May Is Motorcycle Awareness Month

LABELLE, FL. -- With its warm weather and scenic coastal highways, Florida is a popular place for motorcycle enthusiasts who want to explore what all the state has to offer. Florida’s highways and byways will become even more popular with motorcyclists as we head into the warmer summer months. 

May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month and the Florida Highway Patrol is asking both motorists and motorcyclists to use caution and “share the road.”

“Whether it’s by car or by motorcycle, get out and enjoy Florida’s beauty this summer, but do so safely,” said Col. David Brierton, director of the Florida Highway Patrol. “I can’t stress enough the fact that we all must share the road for a safer Florida.”

FHP offers safety tips to drivers:

• Always allow a motorcyclist the full lane width; never try to share a lane.
• Be on the lookout for motorcyclists.
• Check for motorcycles by looking in your mirrors and blind spots before entering or leaving a lane of traffic and at intersections.
• Do not tailgate. Allow more following distance when following a motorcycle, so the motorcyclist has enough time to maneuver or stop in an emergency.
• Don’t drive distracted. 
• Drive sober.

Tips for motorcyclists: 

• Be alert—drowsy driving can impair your ability to react. 
• Drive sober.
• Inspect your motorcycle before each ride. 
• Know the local traffic laws and rules of the road and obey them. 
• Make sure you can be seen, wear bright clothing to increase visibility. 
• Plan your route in advance and coordinate it with the other riders when riding in a group. 
• Wear appropriate gear.

Thursday, May 01, 2014

Mary Bartoshuk - A Woman Of All Seasons From 'Easter Bunny' To 'Tooth Fairy'


A Woman Of Many Faces And Talents Helps Kiwanis Help Kids

LABELLE, FL. -- Mary Bartoshuk is a very busy Kiwanis Club of LaBelle member. With has lots of costumes,  many people have seen her over the years all dressed up for various occasions in the community, from the tooth fairy to the Easter bunny. 

For years, she has been the Clown for the LaBelle Kiwanis Kid's Day Event, the Easter Bunny for the LaBelle Kiwanis Easter Egg Hunt, Mrs. Claus for the LaBelle Kiwanis Kid's Christmas Shopping Day, a Witch for the LaBelle Kiwanis Halloween activities and so much more. 

Mary is an avid and passionate volunteer and her latest costume addition is "The Tooth Fairy" where she plans to go to schools, day cares and the local library to promote healthy teeth and gums. 

"The Kiwanis Club of LaBelle is very proud to have such a valuable member," said Brenda Barnes of the Kiwanis Club.

Kiwanis Partnering with Healthy Families Program

Inspired by Florida Kiwanis Governor Matthew Cantrall's Five Steps to Excellence, Kiwanis clubs throughout the state are doing incredible work to address the goals under Young Child Priority One, including advocating for and supporting their local Healthy Families Florida programs. Healthy Families and Kiwanis is a natural partnership because both share a common mission to improve the lives of Florida's most vulnerable children through parent education and support.

In fiscal year 2012-2013, over 49,200 Florida children, almost half of them under the age of five, were abused and neglected at the hands of their caregivers. An average 135 children are abused and neglected every day and an average of 2 children die every week at the hands of their abusers. These tragic statistics are heartbreaking reminders of why Kiwanis' partnership with Healthy Families Florida is so important. Healthy Families Florida is an evidence-based home visiting program proven to prevent child abuse and neglect before it ever happens.

Here are some ways Kiwanis Clubs are partnering with Healthy Families Florida:

· Participated in Children's Week that is held in Tallahassee during April every year
· Donating diapers - Help Kiwanis First Lady Cheryl Cantrall reach her Florida Kiwanis Diaper Dump Project goal of 750,000 by Mother's Day 2014 and continue to donate throughout the year
· Donating educational DVDs, children's books and home safety items such as outlet plugs and door alarms
· Donating Pak N Plays® to promote safe sleep practices - Unsafe sleep is a leading cause of infant death in Florida
· Providing monetary grants
· Volunteering to help with graduation ceremonies, parent support groups and/or community events
· Serving on local Healthy Families Florida Advisory Boards

Together, we can break the cycle of abuse and neglect and ensure that every child has the opportunity to grow and develop to their full potential.

For more information on Healthy Families Florida, visit www.healthyfamiliesfla.org, or contact the Healthy Families Program at the Florida Department of Health in Hendry and Glades Counties at (863) 674-4041 xt.116