Friday, October 31, 2014

Girls Injured Walking Wrong Way In Darkness

PORT CHARLOTTE, FL. . -- Two teens were injured, one seriously as a car hit them early Friday morning in darkness on their way to school.

Peder Nielsen, 17 of Port Charlotte, Fl. was traveling westbound on Ackerman Ave., about 6:17 a.m. Friday approaching two female pedestrians.

Taylor Crowl, 17  and Kimberly Crowl, 15 were walking westbound on Ackerman Ave., with traffic, walking on the westbound white line on the right hand edge of the roadway.

Kimberly was just slightly ahead of Taylor said FHP investigator Jeffery Hause.. Driver Neilsen failed to see the two girls. It was dark and there are no streetlights.

The 2001 Saturn's right outside mirror struck Taylor's left arm and the vehicle's front right then struck Kimberly. Kimberly landed on the hood and windshield which stopped in the westbound lane of Ackerman Ave.

Kimberly rolled off the vehicle and landed in the westbound grassy ditch. She was airlifted to Lee Memorial due to her serious injuries. Taylor has minor injuries.

The two were charged with pedestrian violations - walking with traffic.

Zachary Reyna Memorial Playground Opening

LABELLE, FL. -- The Zachary Reyna Memorial Playground Grand Opening is scheduled for November 8th in LaBelle. 

The Hendry LaBelle Recreation Board has been on a mission to create a playground that fits the needs of the children of LaBelle. The Board currently has playgrounds in LaBelle, but they hold no more than 20 kids at a time and are targeted for one specific age group. 

This new playground is a playground that is modified to fit the needs of all age groups, and for more than forty kids. The playground has a play area for children ages 2-5, an area for kids 5-12, and fitness equipment for adults.

The playground was named after Zachary Reyna who passed away last year of a brain eating amoeba. His parents, Jesse Reyna and Betsy Villarreal, who are part of our playground committee, have been attending meetings and helping with the construction of the playground. 

The Grand Opening is to help the Rec. Board raise funds to pay off the playground equipment. The recreation board is not only striving to improve our parks, but to improve the quality of life for the people of LaBelle who are hard working, dedicated, and deserve a safe place to bring their children. 

The playground is at the Community Civic Park located at 800 Jaycee Lions Drive, just behind LaBelle Elementary School. Festivities start at 8 am and will continue until 4 pm. Ribbon cutting Ceremony from 11:30-12 pm.

Staff Assistant Wanted - Hendry County

LABELLE, FL. -- A job opening for a staff assistant at the USDA Service Center in LaBelle has opened.

POSTING DATES: October 31 through November 14, 2014
WORK LOCATION: USDA Service Center, Pratt Blvd. LaBelle, FL
PURPOSE OF JOB: This position provides administrative and clerical support to the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) office in LaBelle and to the Hendry Soil and Water Conservation District (HSWCD).
For more information, please call 863-675-5352 or visit our website at

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Joe Trachtenberg On Marijuana Amendment

We've all heard the story - my dad has a painful disease - why not give him some relief, by allowing him access to medical marijuana. And if it was limited to your dad, and folks like him, why would anyone object?

We would like to think, requiring doctors' prescriptions would limit availability to only those folks who truly need this relief. You can trust doctors to honorably administer this program, right? Well, mostly. But remember when our area laid claim to being among the nation's most prolific "pain clinics". How long do you think it will take, for a handful of "pot docs" to rent storefront offices, and begin dispensing authorizations?

Among the greatest problems with Amendment 2, is the lack of a minimum age to receive this drug. Visualize your teenager visiting the "pot doc" claiming insomnia, or a pain in his or her leg - and walking out with a paper which will allow the purchase of pot. Your consent - not needed!

St. Matthew's House is dedicated to restoring lives to broken people. And the waiting lists for our recovery programs keep getting longer.

We carefully study our intake records for new admits to our Justin's Place recovery program. One common thread - high tobacco and marijuana use in high school, or earlier. So it's painfully curious, that as society increases its fight against tobacco, access to marijuana is becoming wide open. And under this law, marijuana stores can go anywhere. No limitation on proximity to schools, religious facilities, etc.

It is generally accepted, most cases of adult addiction begin in the teenage years. And when it comes to drugs, marijuana is the number one entry point.

Do we really need more people smoking pot, as part of their regular daily lives? Are the reports that auto accident rates have risen significantly in Colorado purely coincidental? And there is no question marijuana use is growing significantly, followed closely by heroin, which is present in every middle and high school, in our region.

The pollsters say this referendum is sure to pass. But there's still time for reason to prevail. Please don't make it even easier for our young people to ruin their lives. Sure there's lots of money to be made here, by growers, sellers and the government. But what's the ultimate outcome when fear of breaking the law is replaced with easy access to get high... and an easily defined path to addiction? Why are huge sums of money being spent to legalize "medical marijuana"? Do you really believe it's driven by altruism?

Common sense can still prevail. This is a very badly written bill. Its impact is vastly broader than its advocates suggest, with their slick ads of elderly people suffering. There is a well-defined correlation of teen marijuana use, to high school dropout rates. Please connect the dots - this amendment needs to be defeated.

-Joe Trachtenberg
Board Chairman, St. Matthew's House

Joseph Trachtenberg has lived in Naples since 2004 and was elected as the Chairman of the St. Matthew's House Board of Directors in 2014 after serving as a member since 2010. His professional history includes being Chairman/CEO of Victaulic Company before retiring in 2004. He is a graduate of the Greater Naples Leadership Class XIV and Co-founder of the Tamiami Angel Fund Investors Group I & II. Trachtenberg holds degrees from LIU in Brooklyn, NY and Columbia University Executive Management Program.

Darrell Harris For Hendry Commissioner (Adv.)

Donalyn Williams Dies At 54

Donalyn Williams, age 54 of Nashville, Arkansas, passed away, Sunday October 26, 2014 in Nashville. She was born November 17, 1959 in Labelle, Florida to the late Dr. Jack and Sandra (Sandy) Sayre Williams. 

She was a client of the Howard County Children's Center in Nashville. She loved helping on her family's farm and being with all of her friends at the Center. She loved to visit and never met a stranger. Donalyn also loved to cook and play words with friends' game.
Donalyn was preceded in death by her parents, 4 brothers, Steve, Lee, Mark and Hank Williams. She was the last of her immediate family. 

Her survivors include her cousins, Sharon Goren of Kissimmee, Florida, Diane Garcia of Puntagorda, Florida and Batya Goren of New York, all of her friends at the Children's Center, including the staff as well as many other friends in the surrounding community.
A visitation was held Tuesday, October 28, 2014 from 1 to 3 pm at Nashville Funeral Home., Nashville, Arkansas.

A service will be held Monday, November 3, 2014, 11:00 a.m. at Ortona Cemetery Pavilion, 12870 W. SR 78, Moore Haven, FL 33471

Letter To The Editor On Marijuana Amendment

It's seems like supporting Amendment 2 makes everyone automatically assume you use marijuana and that it's going to give everyone this constitutional ability to be able to abuse it as a drug.

I personally believe if medical marijuana brings relief to someone's pain no matter the cause they should have the right to choose what best brings them the best relief no matter what their medical condition warrants. Why should a patient be denied that right? Why is it OK for them to be given dangerous narcotic drugs with terrible side affects?
If a patient gets the relief they need without the major side-effects and the destruction of pharmaceutical drugs, I'm all for it, regardless of their condition so long as it is providing them the relief they need. Why should patients with one type of pain only be able to receive XYZ for their pain, while another patient with this condition and the same pain levels are given XYZ for their condition. Is it because one patient is likely terminal and one isn't?
Pain is pain, and no one, especially the government, shouldn't be able to pick the winners and losers in who should receive what type of pain relief for what type of condition they think it warrants.
Medical marijuana should be given to any patients it benefits given any condition and the risks that are involved which are to be determined between a patient and their doctor.

-Paul Harper
Naples, Florida

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Speed - Alcohol Factors In Death Crash

NAPLES, FL. -- Daniel Allen Woodard, 22 of Naples, Florida died and passenger Jesse Lee Freeman, 22  of Fort Myers, Florida suffered serious injuries in a crash Monday night.

A 2006 Nissan Maxima was traveling east at 10:29 p.m. in the eastbound lane of Randall Boulevard, west of Desoto Boulevard North when for unknown reasons it crossed the center lane divider and departed the roadway by entering the north shoulder.

The vehicle driven by Woodward struck a mailbox and continued east in the grass shoulder then struck a culvert with the front left tire of the vehicle and vaulted over a driveway. It continued east in the grass shoulder striking another culvert with the front portion of the car, vaulting over a second driveway, then rolled while airborne and landed on its roof then slid toward the east and came to final rest on it's roof, facing east.

The driver of was ejected from the vehicle and was pronounced deceased at the scene. Freeman was taken to Downtown Naples Community Hospital.

The crash was alcohol related and speed was a factor in this crash said FHP Trooper A. Esposito and homicide investigator Corporal J.M, Rongish.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Fossil Hunter Presents Museum Program November 12

LABELLE, FL. -- Noted area paleontologist and former Clewiston resident Mark Renz will present a program on Florida fossils at the second of LaBelle Heritage Museum’s Special Speaker Programs for the 2014/2015 program year at 7 o’clock on the evening of Wednesday, November 12, at LaBelle City Hall’s Commission Chambers, 481 West Hickpochee Avenue, accessible from the rear of the building.

The museum’s participation in this neighborhood program is made possible by collaboration with the Clewiston Museum on a special two-year partnership grant from the Florida Humanities Council. There is no admission charge for the program, but visitors are asked to arrive before 7 o’clock to allow Mark Renz to start on time since he does have to travel home at the end of the program.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Darrell Harris Putting People First

Paid Political Advertisement Paid For And Approved By Darrell Harris, Republican Candidate for Hendry County Commission

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Same Sex Couples Eligible For Federal Benefits In Six More States

Government Gives Social Security And VA Benefits To Same Sex Couples In 32 States
In the latest development following the Supreme Court’s decision earlier this month to decline to hear any pending cases regarding same-sex marriage, Attorney General Eric Holder announced Saturday that the federal government will now recognize same-sex married couples in six new states: Alaska, Arizona, Idaho, North Carolina, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

Last week, the Attorney General made a similar announcement with respect to seven other states: Colorado, Indiana, Nevada, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin. Saturday’s announcement adds to that list and brings the total number of states where same-sex couples are recognized by the federal government to 32, plus the District of Columbia.

The Attorney General’s announcement means couples married in these states will now qualify for a range of federal benefits, including those administered by the Social Security Administration and Department of Veterans Affairs.

“With each new state where same-sex marriages are legally recognized, our nation moves closer to achieving of full equality for all Americans,” the Attorney General said. “We are acting as quickly as possible with agencies throughout the government to ensure that same-sex married couples in these states receive the fullest array of benefits allowable under federal law.”

In addition, the Attorney General also announced that the Department of Justice has determined it can legally recognize marriages performed in Indiana and Wisconsin this past June. These marriages were performed immediately after federal district courts ruled that those states’ bans on same-sex marriage are unconstitutional, but subsequent developments created confusion about the status of those marriages. Based on the Attorney General’s announcement, however, those couples married during that period will now have their unions recognized by the federal government.

Governor Orders Ebola Monitoring For Four Travelers

Florida Requiring Four Individuals To Take Part In Health Evaluations 

Today, Florida Governor Rick Scott signed an Executive Order mandating twice-daily 21-day health monitoring for people returning from Center For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) designated Ebola-affected areas.

Four individuals have entered Florida from African travel and are ordered to have twice daily health evaluations for three weeks under the Governor's Executive Order.

Scott said, “This executive order will give the Florida Department of Health the authority they need to conduct 21-day health monitoring and risk assessments for all those who have returned or will return to Florida from the CDC designated Ebola-affected areas of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. We have asked the CDC to identify the risk levels of all returning individuals from these areas, but they have not provided that information. Therefore, we are moving quickly to require the four individuals who have returned to Florida already – and anyone in the future who will return to Florida from an Ebola area – to take part in twice daily 21-day health evaluations with DOH personnel.

Aggressive Action Required Says Scott
“I want to be clear that we are taking this aggressive action at the state level out of an abundance of caution in the absence of much-needed Ebola risk classification information from the CDC. We are using what information is available to our Department of Health through the CDC’s Epi-X web-based system, which monitors individuals who travel to areas with infectious diseases, including Ebola. Using this system, we know that four individuals have already returned to Florida after traveling to Ebola-affected areas. Following the news of Dr. Craig Spencer testing positive for Ebola in New York, DOH began working to identify anyone who has already returned to Florida after traveling to an Ebola area and is aggressively investigating how much risk these individuals pose for contracting the disease. We will take further action to protect the health of these individuals, and our communities, if we determine any of them are at a ‘high risk’ of contracting the disease. Further action by the Florida Department of Health will include mandatory quarantine of anyone we suspect is at high-risk of testing positive for Ebola due to the type of contact they had with the disease.

“Mandatory twice-daily health monitoring will help us obtain important information that will assist us in caring for the Floridians who are returning to our state and preventing any spread of this deadly disease if one of these individuals ever develops possible Ebola symptoms within 21 days of their return. Again, we are glad we do not have a case of Ebola in Florida, but we will continue to do everything in our power to ensure we never do.”

Governor Scott’s full executive order is available here.

Governor Scott’s mandate to the Florida Department of Health today mirrors the Department of Defense’s post-deployment requirements for military men and women deployed in Ebola-affected areas.

Ramona Diaz Dies At 84

Ramona Fundora Diaz, age 84, of Clewiston, passed away October 23, 2014 in Clewiston.
She was born May 20, 1930 in Cuba, to the late Seferino and the late Rosaura (DeArmas) Fundora.

She is survived by one son: Roberto Verdaguer and three daughters: Susan McDonald, Sonia Castro, Maritza Motiwala, grandchildren, Janise Horne, Susan Watkins, Jessica Molina, Alec McDonald, Alex Verdaguer, Robert Verdaguer, Stephanie Verdaguer, Ashley and Giovanni; great grandchildren, Kristi Rivera, Tiffany Horne, Gabrielle Horne, Sofia Verdaguer and Landon Perkins. 

She was preceded in death by her husband Felix Diaz.

Arrangements by Akin-Davis Funeral Home - Clewiston.

President Obama - The Fight Against Ebola

In this week’s address, the President discussed the measures being taking to respond to Ebola cases in the United States, while containing the epidemic at its source in West Africa. This week, the President said he continued to focus on domestic preparedness, with the creation of new CDC guidelines and the announcement of new travel measures ensuring all travelers from the three affected countries are directed to and screened at one of five airports.

The President emphasized that it’s important to follow the facts, rather than fear, as New Yorkers did yesterday when they stuck to their daily routine. He said Ebola is not an easily transmitted disease, and America is leading the world in the fight to stamp it out in West Africa.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Learn About The Birds And Wildlife

Learn about the birds and wildlife found in the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) Stormwater Treatment Areas. SFWMD biologist Brian Garrett will present an information program "Avian Protection within the STAs: Nesting and Recreational" on Monday November 10 at 7 p. m. at the Clewiston Museum located at 109 Central Avenue Clewiston, Florida (across the street from The Clewiston Inn).

Brian Garrett has been a biologist with the South Florida Water Management District for 17 years; five years as the Operations and Maintenance Wildlife Coordinator. He assists with activities and projects throughout the District to minimize impacts to protected species that are utilizing project areas. Brian coordinates on a wide variety of protected species including ground-nesting shorebirds, Everglade snail kites, crested caracaras, West Indian manatees, and gopher tortoises.

This free program is hosted by Hendry-Glades Audubon.

Fun In The Park For The Kids

LaBelle Kiwanis Kid’s Day---Another Fantastic Day!
It was another gorgeous day for the annual Kiwanis Kid’s Day event! Kids (of all ages) filled up the Barron Park on Saturday, October 18th. The kids enjoyed free games, free popcorn, free snow cones, free books, and free stuffed animals and even face painting! This year, kids were excited to find TWO water slides!

The Showtime Cloggers wowed the crowd with some fancy foot-work and Sheriff Whidden and his Posse Band provided some great entertainment!
The Kiwanis Club of LaBelle has sponsored the Annual Kiwanis Kid’s Day event for almost 30 years! There are just too many people to thank individually, but Kiwanis would like to extend a huge thank-you to all of the volunteers, community partners and agencies that participated, and thanks to the parents and family members that brought their kids out to enjoy a fun-filled day in LaBelle. 

Many thanks goes out to Winn Dixie of LaBelle for donating food items, Ace Hardware and Akin-Davis Funeral Home for donating tricycles, Center State Bank and Holland Home Management Services Inc. for donating bicycles. Winners were: Boy’s bike: Romeo Garcia, Girl’s bike: Giancarlos Castano, Boy’s Tricycle: Jessica Moreno and Girls Tricycle: Nicole Garza.

Changes Coming To Gas Stations - Strong Arm Suspect Caught

What's Happening In Clewiston This Week

CLEWISTON, FL. --  Changes may be coming to two gas stations in Clewiston, Community Development Director Reese says he has  received calls regarding changes to two local gas stations. 

The Valero station, located at 101 North Berner Road has discussed changing to Mobil and the Hess station, located at 433 East Sugarland Hwy. may be changing to Speedway. 

Director Reese says the department is waiting for their site plans and sign application paperwork to arrive.

Four of the Clewiston Planning & Zoning members have been reappointed by the City Commission for two more years: Lewell Hughes, Haitham Kaki, Donnie Hughes, and Vic McCorvey. Michael Atkinson is the fifth member.

Police Chief Don Gutshall reports on Monday evening, a strong armed robbery occurred shortly after the victim left the Clewiston Utilities Building. As he crossed the street, another man approached him from behind and physically and forcefully removed money from an elderly man’s pockets. 

Police Department K-9 was deployed and was quickly able to track and arrest the suspect, Javier
Crespo, who was identified by the victim.

Chief Gutshall says the department will have a couple of extra officers out Saturday evening to monitor activity and keep an eye on parked vehicles around the City park for Fall Festival held this weekend. Extra officers were scheduled to be out patrolling during the overnight scheduled power
outage this week.
Following is a summary of the week’s police activities:
1228 Commercial / Residential Security Checks
604 Complaints Investigated
12 Arrests Made
21 Traffic Citations Issued
29 Traffic Warnings Issued
4 City Ordinance Violations
7 Shopping Carts Removed
36 Improperly Placed Signs Removed/Moved
66 Merchant EscortsFYI – October 24, 2014 Page 3
11 Alarms Responded To
3 Traffic Accidents Investigated

In other city news, October being Fire Safety Month, the Clewiston Fire Marshal has been busy promoting fire prevention at the local elementary schools. Eastside and Westside have had their “community helper” day. There are also scheduled tours of the firehouse for preschool kids and the fire department has been reaching out to home school mothers so those kids can be educated on fire safety as well.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Obituaries - Pfluge, Crews, Carter

Eric Jon Pfluge, age 47, of LaBelle, Florida, passed away October 23, 2014 in Hope Hospice in Lehigh Acres, Florida. 

He was born Nov. 24, 1966 in Canton, OH to Richard Tracy Pfluge, Jr. and Martha Jane (Mercier) Pfluge. Eric graduated from Jackson Memorial High School in Massillon, OH in 1985 and attended Akron University for 2 1/ 2 years before moving to Florida. Eric had his own maintenance business along with being a Real Estate Agent.
He was preceded in death by his maternal grandparents: Ruth and Andrew Mercier of North Canton, OH and paternal grandparents: Richard and Dorothy Pfluge of LaBelle, FL, uncle: Don Barber of LaBelle and aunt & uncle: Tim and Jean Mercier of N. Canton, OH and uncle: Arden Mercier of Huntington, IN.
Eric is survived by his mother & father: Rich (Trace) Pfluge and Martha (Marti) Mercier Pfluge of LaBelle, brother: Richard (Rick) Pfluge of North Canton, OH and niece: Rebeka Pfluge and nephew: Ryan Floom of Canton. He is also survived by aunt: Margaret Barber of LaBelle, aunt & uncle: Jan & John Cain of Nashville, TN, many, many other aunts, uncles, cousins throughout the U.S.
A private memorial will take place at a later date in Ohio.

Cremation Arrangements by Akin-Davis Funeral Home - LaBelle.

Clarence "Ezra" Crews, 85, of Immokalee, died Wednesday October 22 at his home. Born July 2, 1929, he was the son of the late Carl Thomas Crews and Edith Minnick Crews.  Mr. Crews was owner and operator of Crews Salvage in Immokalee. 

He is survived by his wife Teresa Mendoza Crews, sons Johnny Domingo Crews and his fiancé Beth Hunter and Clarence Ezra Crews Jr and his fiancé Vicky Ramos, and five grandchildren Shiana Crews, Christian Crews, Johnny Domingo 'John Boy' Crews, Tommy Lee Crews and Cody Jay Crews.
Visitation will be held at Akin-Davis Funeral Home in LaBelle Thursday night from 6pm-8pm. Funeral services will be held at 11 am on Friday October 24, 2014 at Immokalee First Seminole Baptist Church. Military graveside rites and burial will follow at Lake Trafford Memorial Gardens, Immokalee.

Margaret Ann Carter, age 72, of Clewiston, passed away December 20, 2014 in Clewiston
She was born Nov. 9, 1941 in Jacksonville, FL, to the late Ottis and the late Ruth (Rich) Pedrick. She was a lifelong resident of Clewiston.

Survivors include her husband: Clyde R. Carter, children, Kelly (Gregory) Glisson of Aiken, SC, Clyde Richard (Rosa) Carter, Jr. of Cape Coral and Tally (James Jr.) Wright of Conway, SC; grandchildren: Douglas Glisson, Sarah Johnson, Caelan Carter, Case Carter; Connor Carter, Meaghan Wright; Evelyn Ann Wright; James Wright, III and Bertha Mae Wright and great-grandchildren: Shawn Liam Moreland, Morgan Daniels, Gavin Sanders, Mikiali Johnson, Bradley Johnson, Jr, and Bearic Johnson.

Funeral services will be held Monday, October 27, 2014, 2:00 p.m. in Faith Lutheran Church, Clewiston with Rev. Alan Cook officiating. A graveside committal will follow at Ridgelawn Cemetery in Clewiston. Visitation will be 5-7 p.m. Sunday evening October 26, 2014 in Akin-Davis Funeral Home.  Cremation Arrangements by Akin-Davis Funeral Home - Clewiston

Darrell Harris - Putting People First (Adv.)

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Free Living Will And Health Care Surrogate Presentations

LABELLE, FL.-- Have you made plans for a Health Care Surrogate? Florida Rural Legal Services, Inc will be giving free presentations in LaBelle and Moore Haven for seniors aged 60 and above.

The meeting will be held Wednesday, November 5 at Hope Connections, 475 East Cowboy Way in LaBelle and Wednesday, November 19 at Hope Connections, 101 Florida Ave. NW in Moore Haven

Afterwards the presentation any senior can meet one-on-one with an advocate to create and execute a living will and designation of a health care surrogate.

Marijuana: Yes Or No - Voters Will Decide

LABELLE, FL. -- In less than two weeks, voters will decide whether medical marijuana will be sold in Florida. The much discussed topic has supporter smoking mad on both sides.

Meanwhile other issues on the ballot are taking a back seat, with the possible exception of the Governor's race between Charlie Crist and Rick Scott, with attack ads flying over the airwaves at a steady pace.

The League of Women Voters has published an excellent guide for voters with information on all the issues including the three constitutional amendments, water and land conservation, medical marijuana, and judicial appointments: candidates for Governor Crist and Scott; Attorney General Pam Bondi and George Sheldon;  Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater and William Rankin; and Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam and Thaddeus Hamilton.

Read non-partisan facts on all the issues and candidates at the League of Women Voters of Florida Education Fund

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Kids Day In The Park!

LABELLE, FL. -- It was a gorgeous day and kids of all ages seemed to enjoy themselves at the LaBelle Kiwanis Kids Day event that was held in the Barron Park on Saturday, October 18. The LaBelle Kiwanis has sponsored this event for over 30 years.

Photo: courtesy Brenda Barnes

Marijuana Amendment Supporters Plan Rally

LABELLE, FL. -- Supporter of Amendment 2 will be holding a rally in LaBelle on Saturday, November 1 says organizer Paul Harper.  Harper has been involved in several rallies in Southwest Florida in recent weeks.

Harper, a former resident of LaBelle who grew up in Hendry county says, "Let's show the people of Hendry/Glades that there is broad support for this important issue! This is a non-partisan event and everyone from all political groups are welcome to support or sponsor this event.

Harper posted on his Facebook page, "Many patients and their doctors find marijuana to be a useful medicine as part of the treatment for AIDS, cancer, glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, dystonia, and other ailments. Yet Florida laws treat all patients currently using medical marijuana as criminals. Doctors are presently allowed to prescribe cocaine and morphine — but not marijuana.

"The effort to legalize medical cannabis here in South-West Florida has fallen victim to egregious lies and fear mongering funded by out of state billionaires and big pharmaceutical companies that want to keep the federal government between patients and their right to the safe access for the medicine that they need,"

The demonstrators will be meeting on the North East Corner of SR 80 and Bridge St across from the courthouse from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. 

Photo: Paul Harper

George Niloff Dies At 91

George J. Niloff, age 91, of LaBelle, passed away October 13, 2014 in LaBelle with his wife by his side.

He was born Sep. 15, 1923 in Gary, IN, to the late Chris and the late Mary (Mizenkopski) Niloff. Mr. Niloff married Marlyn Helsel on May 27, 1955. He served his country during World War II in the Army Air Corps from 26 Jan 43 to 12 Nov 45 as an airplane mechanic, he did tours in Normandy, Northern France, Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe. He worked as a Concrete Mason for many years and finally working as a Concrete Foreman for Local #41. He had been a member of American Legion Post 13 of LaBelle.

He was a fun loving guy who will be missed by his loving wife, caring children and precious grandchildren, adorable great grandchildren and his close friends.

Survivors include his loving wife of 59 years: Marlyn Niloff, two caring sons: Richard "Rick" Niloff of LaBelle, Daryl Niloff of Kissimmee, and one caring daughter: Dr. Caryn Brown and husband Greg of Beverly Shores, Indiana, five precious grandchildren and four adorable great grandchildren.

The family would like donations made in George's name be given to Hope Hospice 9470 Healthpark Circle, Fort Myers, Florida 33908.

Cremation arrangements by Akin-Davis Funeral Home - LaBelle.

Fund Raiser For Reyna Park

LABELLE, FL. -- The Rotary Club of LaBelle will be serving Pancake Breakfast Saturday, November 8th from 8:00 AM to 10:00 AM at LaBelle Civic Park.

The Park is located between West Cowboy Way and Jaycee Lions Blvd, LaBelle, FL.
All you can eat breakfast is $5.00 each with all profits contributed to the Zachary Reyna Memorial Park. The new playground equipment is now being installed in the park. Donations are still needed says the Rotary Club.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Sierra Club Endorses Charlie Crist For Governor

Sierra Club, the country’s largest grassroots environmental organization, officially endorsed Charlie Crist for Florida Governor today.

“Charlie Crist is committed to build on his excellent record and to reverse the damage done to environmental protection in Florida by our current Governor Rick Scott.” said Frank Jackalone, Sierra Club Florida Staff Director.

“The choice is clear: Charlie Crist understands our state’s environmental challenges and will work to lead Florida on a path toward conservation, sustainability and environmental restoration,” said Sierra Club Florida Political Chair Cecilia Height.

Sierra Club noted four major environmental accomplishments during his tenure as Governor from 2007-2010:

1. Crist advised the Florida Public Service Commission to reject new coal plants in Florida which led to the cancellation of six massive coal-fired power plants that Florida utilities had proposed.
2. Crist took a strong leadership position recognizing the impact climate change will have on Florida and put the state on the path to set strong renewable energy goals, an action that was later reversed by the Florida Legislature.
3. Crist negotiated an agreement with US Sugar Corporation that provides the State with the option to buy all 187,000 acres of land owned by US Sugar in the Everglades.
4. Crist appointed Tom Pelham as the director of the Department of Community Affairs, who turned DCA into a major champion of growth management. (Scott eliminated the Department when he took office.)

Sierra Club Florida said it expected Crist would be a leader in the following areas: protecting wild Florida, stopping new fracking and drilling, combating climate change, expanding solar energy, growing mass transit and electric vehicles, cleaning up Florida’s polluted waters, restoring the Everglades, and enforcing environmental laws.

Rick Scott Wants Ebola Check Of Airline Passengers

Florida Governor Scott released a statement following the news that the second healthcare worker, Amber Joy Vinson, diagnosed with Ebola traveled on Frontier Airlines on October 13th with a low-grade fever:

“The CDC announced that they are contacting those passengers on the airplane with nurse Amber Joy Vinson, and I am asking them to expand their contacts today to include all passengers traveling on that plane for the full 24 hours after Amber’s flight. Within 24 hours of Amber’s flight with a low-grade fever, we know the plane made five additional stops – including one into and one out of our Fort Lauderdale Airport.

“The CDC has already admitted that they have been slow to respond to developing cases of Ebola, and we do not want to take any risk of Ebola coming to Florida. Their immediate action to contact all these passengers today is essential to explaining any potential health risks to themselves and their family. I want all Florida passengers to have as much information as possible directly from the CDC to ease any of their fears and understand any way they could have made contact with the disease.

“We continue to hope we will never have a case of Ebola in Florida, but unfortunately, we have seen from the CDC’s own admission that they have failed to get ahead of this disease’s spread in America to date – and we will do everything we can in Florida to get the CDC’s full engagement to protect our Florida healthcare workers, our citizens and our visitors.

“Yesterday, we also requested the CDC conduct healthcare worker training with all Florida hospitals by conference call. Friday morning, I will meet again with our Florida Department of Health leaders and notify the public of what, if any action, the CDC has taken on our Ebola preparedness requests following that meeting.”

Two Arrested In Chop Shop Operation

CLEWISTON, FL. -- Two men were arrested for the operation of a chop shop in rural Hendry county, Florida after an investigation by both Monroe County and Hendry county investigators.

On Tuesday, October 14, Hendry County Sheriff’s Office received a call from Monroe County Sheriff’s Office requesting assistance in locating a stolen vehicle in the Pioneer Plantation area.

Monroe County Detectives stated that on October 6, 2014 the owner of a 1999 Chevrolet truck reported his truck had been stolen from Key Largo, Florida. On October 14, 2014, the victim searched Craigslist classified ads and came across an aluminum fuel tank that he positively identified as the one installed in the back of the truck that had been stolen. The victim then called and spoke with a man who identified himself as Wayne who told him that the fuel tank was located at 4450 Pioneer 16th Street, in Clewiston, Florida. The victim then contacted Monroe County Sheriff’s Detectives and provided them with the information he had received, in turn Monroe County officials requested we assist in the possible recovery of this property.

When Hendry County Deputies arrived at 4450 Pioneer 16th Street, they made contact with 49 year old Mitchell Wayne Everett, 4450 Pioneer 16th Street and 49 year old Ernesto Gutierrez Garcia, of Hialeah, Florida. Everett allowed Hendry County Investigators onto their property and once there, Investigators discovered that the men were operating a Chop Shop at the Pioneer location. Investigators located various tools, miscellaneous vehicle parts and accessories.

During the investigation Hendry County Investigators were able to identify and confirm that 8 ATV’s, boats, and vehicles found on this property had been reported stolen from Miami Dade Police Department, Broward County Sheriff’s Office, Pembroke Pines Police Department, Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, and Monroe County Sheriff’s Office. The vehicles recovered were towed to a secure location for further processing.

Mitchell Wayne Everett was taken into custody and charged with numerous counts of Possession of Vehicle with Altered Numbers, Grand Theft of Motor Vehicle, Dealing in Stolen Property, Owning and Operating or Aid and Abet a Chop Shop. He is currently being held on $250,000.00 bond.

Ernesto Gutierrez Garcia, of 3205 NW 103RD Street, Hialeah, Florida was arrested and charged with numerous counts of Possession of Vehicle with Altered Numbers, Grand Theft of Motor Vehicle, Dealing in Stolen Property, Owning and Operating or Aid and Abet a Chop Shop. He was additionally charged with an Out of County Warrant for Violation of Probation. Garcia is currently being held with no bond.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

132 Cleveland-Dallas Airline Passengers Sought For Ebola Interviews

CDC and Frontier Airlines Announce Passenger Notification Underway
On the morning of Oct. 14, the second healthcare worker reported to the hospital with a low-grade fever and was isolated. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirms that the second healthcare worker who tested positive last night for Ebola traveled by air Oct. 13, the day before she reported symptoms.

Because of the proximity in time between the evening flight and first report of illness the following morning, CDC is reaching out to passengers who flew on Frontier Airlines flight 1143 Cleveland to Dallas/Fort Worth Oct. 13.

CDC is asking all 132 passengers on Frontier Airlines flight 1143 Cleveland to Dallas/Fort Worth on October 13 (the flight route was Cleveland to Dallas Fort Worth and landed at 8:16 p.m. CT) to call 1 800-CDC INFO (1 800 232-4636). After 1 p.m. ET, public health professionals will begin interviewing passengers about the flight, answering their questions, and arranging follow up. Individuals who are determined to be at any potential risk will be actively monitored.

The healthcare worker exhibited no signs or symptoms of illness while on flight 1143, according to the crew. Frontier is working closely with CDC to identify and notify passengers who may have traveled on flight 1143 on Oct. 13. Passengers who may have traveled on flight 1143 should contact CDC at 1 800-CDC INFO (1 800 232-4636).

Frontier Airlines Statement
“At approximately 1:00 a.m. MT on October 15, Frontier was notified by the CDC that a customer traveling on Frontier Airlines flight 1143 Cleveland to Dallas/Fort Worth on Oct. 13 has since tested positive for the Ebola virus. The flight landed in Dallas/Fort Worth at 8:16 p.m. local and remained overnight at the airport having completed its flying for the day at which point the aircraft received a thorough cleaning per our normal procedures which is consistent with CDC guidelines prior to returning to service the next day. It was also cleaned again in Cleveland last night. Previously the customer had traveled from Dallas Fort Worth to Cleveland on Frontier flight 1142 on October 10.

Customer exhibited no symptoms or sign of illness while on flight 1143, according to the crew. Frontier responded immediately upon notification from the CDC by removing the aircraft from service and is working closely with CDC to identify and contact customers who may traveled on flight 1143.

Customers who may have traveled on either flight should contact CDC at 1 800 CDC-INFO.

The safety and security of our customers and employees is our primary concern. Frontier will continue to work closely with CDC and other governmental agencies to ensure proper protocols and procedures are being followed.”

For more information on ebola, visit

Obituaries - James McClung, Shirley Carling

James Rodney McClung, 62, of The Glades, died Friday October 10th in Clewiston.

Born June 12, 1952, in Chattanooga, TN, he was the son of the late Hilbert Andrew McClung and Syble Margarite (Holliday) McClung.Rodney was active in the Boy Scouts as both a leader and trainer. He also served as chaplain at The Glades for the past 2 years.

He is survived by his wife, Johnnie McClung, two sons Daniel McClung of Plano, TX and Michael McClung and his wife Susan of Albuquerque, NM, a daughter Elizabeth McClung of Missouri two step-daughters Charlie Bean at home and Kathryn Bean of Sequin, TX, a sister Kathy Luikart and her husband Bob of Lookout, WV, three grandchildren Hannah McClung, Taylor Brown Bean and Amberleigh Brown Bean. He also leaves behind many nieces and nephews, and a special pet named Abigail.

Memorial services will be held at a later date at The Glades. Cremation arrangements by Akin-Davis Funeral Home, LaBelle.

Shirley Yvonne Carling, age 76, of LaBelle, passed away October 10, 2014 in Lehigh Acres.
She was born Sep. 6, 1938 in Arcadia, FL, to the late John Thomas and the late Pearlie Mae (Bryant) Williams. She was a resident of LaBelle since 1996 and was a member of the Women of the Moose and the American Legion Post #130 Women's Auxiliary in LaBelle.

Survivors include her husband: Charles L.Carling, sister: Wanda (Clyde) Sarver of Leesburg, children: Dwayne (Debbie) Acuff and Tamara Wilkes of Lehigh Acres, Michael Allen and Toni Edge of LaBelle, grandchildren: Waylon Stout, Brandon Stout, Jeri Stout, Angela Chason, Jared Acuff, Carolyn Payne and Brianna Gibson and eleven great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by five brothers and five sisters.

A private family memorial will be held on a later date. Cremation Arrangements by Akin-Davis Funeral Home - LaBelle.

State Spending Millions On Ebola Defense

TALLAHASEE, FL. -- The state of Florida is spending upwards of $4 million on "personal protective equipment" to fight Ebola should the deadly disease show up anywhere in Florida.

Dr. John H. Armstrong, MD, Florida's State Surgeon General and Secretary yesterday sent a letter to
Dr. Thomas Frieden, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, notifying him of the Florida Department of Health’s action to redirect about four million dollars in funds "to strengthen Florida’s preparedness efforts related to the emerging Ebola threat."

He said,the Department intends to redirect funds from two grant programs in the amount of $1.8 million from the Hospital Preparedness Program and $4.0 million from Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program for the purchase of additional Personal Protective Equipment "to further enhance our readiness for Ebola and other emerging diseases."

Armstrong says the Florida Health Department is immediately redirecting $250,000 of Hospital Preparedness Program funds and $1 million Public Health Emergency Preparedness funds.

Commissioner Wants Panther Off Endangered List

Donna Storter Says Panther Inhibits Development In Hendry And Glades County
MOORE HAVEN, FL. -- Glades County Commission Chairman Donna Storter commented at the latest Glades commission meeting on a recent “summit” meeting that she and county manager Paul Carlisle attended with the chairs and managers of six counties including Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry, Glades and Sarasota County. 

Among topics discussed were the Florida Panther and water quality issues. Storter says Collier Commission Chairman Tom Henning expressed an opinion that the Florida Panther, Florida's official state animal, should be removed from the Federal Endangered Species List.

Storter said she had the opportunity to explain to Collier County officials that though their Ave Maria new town and university development near Immokalee was beautiful, it has negatively impacted Glades County and Hendry County by the removal of panther habitat, now creating she says, development issues even north of the Caloosahatchee River; 

"We now have in Glades County primary and secondary panther habitat zones as well as dispersal panther zones that inhibit development due to mitigation requirements," said Storter. 

Storter said the Chairman of the Collier County Commission agreed with her "that the panthers now are not Florida natives but Texas crossbreeds."

Historically Florida Panthers lived in Florida, South Carolina, Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Alabama, Tennessee and some think they reached into Texas. Today they only live in parts of Southern Florida. The US Fish & Wildlife Service and many private organizations are fighting to save the Florida Panther from extinction. 

The Florida Panther is considered one the most endangered mammals on Earth.

The Florida Panther was placed on the endangered species list in 1967. About 30 to 35 juvenile and adult Florida Panthers wear radio collars as part of the Florida Panther Recovery Program. It is estimated about 100 to 180 adults and subadults live in south Florida, the only known breeding population.

Storter said the meeting with commissioners and county managers "was informative and she felt each participant learned a lot about the issues of the other counties and found they had common ground to work on."

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Jury Finds Guilt In Child Sex Exploitation Case

FORT MYERS, FL—United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III announced today that a federal jury yesterday found Quinton Paul Handlon (44) of Port Charlotte, Fl. guilty of production of child pornography, possession of child pornography, and coercion and enticement of a minor to engage in sexual activity.

According to testimony and evidence presented at trial, Handlon sexually abused his teenage niece over an approximately four-year period, while she was between the ages of 11 and 15. He provided his niece with money and other items in exchange for sexual activity. 

Handlon took sexually explicit photographs of the child, filmed her engaged in sexual activity with him, and coerced her to take photographs and videos of herself for his sexual gratification. A search warrant executed at Handlon’s residence recovered the electronic devices containing the victim’s images and videos.

He faces a maximum penalty of life in federal prison. His sentencing hearing is scheduled for January 12, 2015.

This case was investigated by the FBI Child Exploitation Unit. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Tama Koss Caldarone and Stacie B. Harris.

In The Service - Pvt. Pedro Dimas

Army Pvt. Pedro Dimas has graduated from basic combat training at Fort Jackson, Columbia, S.C.

During the nine weeks of training, the soldier studied the Army mission, history, tradition and core values, physical fitness, and received instruction and practice in basic combat skills, military weapons, chemical warfare and bayonet training, drill and ceremony, marching, rifle marksmanship, armed and unarmed combat, map reading, field tactics, military courtesy, military justice system, basic first aid, foot marches, and field training exercises.

Dimas is the brother of Kandy Dimas of Labelle, Fla. He is a 2014 graduate of Labelle High School, Labelle, Fla.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Harvest Festival Sunday - Free Food, Games, And Fun

The Seventh Annual Harvest Festival 

LABELLE, FL. -- On Sunday evening at 6:00 PM October 26th LaBelle Assembly of God will be having its Seventh Annual Community Harvest Festival. This event is sponsored by The Disabled American Veterans chapter 144, The Kiwanis Club Of LaBelle, and T.M. Trees Inc.

There is no cost! Leave your money at home. Come and enjoy yourself . The entire community is invited . There will be all kinds of games. hot dogs, chips, chili, drinks and more. There will be games and children of all ages invited 1 to 111.
Lots of candy to be given out, and dress up in a costume if you like.

Come and be a part of this fun evening at LaBelle Assembly of God, 123 Fraser Ave. across from the Edward Upthegrove Elementary School. For more information call 675-0900. Everything is Free.

Kiwanis Kid's Day In The Park This Saturday

LABELLE, FL. -- It's finally here! Kiwanis Club of LaBelle will present Kiwanis Kids’ Day this Saturday in the Barron Park. Join in for a fun-filled day for the whole family! Lots of fun things to do and lots of interesting things to see! There will be pizza, hotdogs, and nachos to tickle your taste buds!

Mayor Lyons will open the day’s events with a grand welcome at 10am! The Sheriff’s Office Explorers will present the American Flag and host a bike rodeo! Sheriff Whidden and his Posse Band will sing and play some great music; everyone is encouraged to dance and have a great time!
The Showtime Cloggers will show off their talents first thing Saturday morning, so come early at 10am so you don’t miss anything!
There will be free popcorn, free snow cones, free candy, as well as free play time in bounce houses. Every kid will have a chance to win a free stuffed animal! There will be raffle tickets (2 for $1.00) for a chance to win bicycles and tricycles! Kids can participate in relay-races, hula-hoop contests, and other exciting games. Prizes for the winners! Kids will also get to see Smokey Bear, McGruff the Crime Dog, and the Crash Dummies.

Additionally, there will also be lots of agencies, businesses and community partners set up in the Barron Park to provide fun things and educational information for kids and their families. Don’t miss this great event.

Does Marijuana Make Users More Creative?

People often think that smoking cannabis makes them more creative. However, research by Leiden University of the Netherlands psychologists Lorenza Colzato and Mikael Kowal shows that the opposite is true. They published their findings on October 7, 2014 in Psychopharmacology.

Strong cannabis doesn’t work
The findings show that cannabis with a high concentration of the psychoactive ingredient THC does not improve creativity. Smokers who ingested a low dose of THC, or none at all (they were given a placebo), performed best in the thinking tasks that the test candidates had to carry out. A high dose of THC was actually shown to have a negative effect on the ability to quickly come up with as many solutions as possible to a given problem.

Increased creativity is an illusion
The research findings contradict the claims of people who say that their thinking changes and becomes more original after smoking a joint. There’s no sign of any increased creativity in their actual performance, according to Colzato. ‘The improved creativity that they believe they experience is an illusion.’

Too much dope is counterproductive
Colzato: ‘If you want to overcome writer’s block or any other creative gap, lighting up a joint isn’t the best solution. Smoking several joints one after the other can even be counterproductive to creative thinking.’

The research method
Colzato and her PhD candidate Kowal were the first researchers to study the effects of cannabis use on creative thinking. For ethical reasons, only cannabis users were selected for this study. The test candidates were divided into three groups of 18. One group was given cannabis with a high THC content (22 mg), the second group was given a low dose (5.5 mg) and the third group was given a placebo. The high dose was equivalent to three joints and the low dose was equal to a single joint. 

Obviously, none of the test candidates knew what they were being given; the cannabis was administered via a vaporizer. The test candidates then had to carry out cognitive tasks that were testing for two types of creative thinking:
Divergent thinking: generating rapid solutions for a given problem, such as: “Think of as many uses as you can for a pen?”
Convergent thinking: Finding the only right answer to a question, such as: “What is the link between the words ‘time’, ‘hair’ and ‘stretching’. (The answer is ‘long’.)

Archbold Station Tour November 7

LABELLE, FL. -- Mark your Calendar for a visit and guided walk at the Archbold Biological Station on Friday November 7, 2014 from 9 a.m. to noon.

Carpool from Barron Park (Bridge Street on River) in LaBelle. at 7:30 a.m. or meet at Archbold at 8:45 a.m.

$4 each. Bring Picnic Lunch. Limit: 25 participants. Contact Margaret England for Reservation

Phone or text: 863-517-0202 or e-mail, Archbold Biological Station is located at 123 Main Dr Venus, FL 33960.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Obituaries - Annie Duncan, Stamo Poulos

Annie Bernice Duncan, age 78, of Alva passed away October 9, 2014 surrounded by her family.
She was born Jan. 31, 1936 in Fort Myers, FL, to the late Benjamin and the late Annie Lou (Simmons) Willis. She married Solon William Duncan July 14, 1957, he preceded her in death on July 29, 2012. She was a member of Olga Baptist Church for many years. She was a wonderful cook, baker and loved to give her family and friends her delicious baked goods.

Survivors include five sons: Danny (Diane) Duncan, Solon (Jill) Duncan, Duey (Lisa) Duncan, Gary (Lori) Duncan, J.P. (Jodi) Duncan, two sisters: MaryLou (Mansel) Marlor, Doll (A.J.) Allen
Grandchildren; Richard (Jennifer) Ronco, Melissa (Kristie) Duncan, Danielle Duncan (Parker) Gauntt, Derrick Duncan, Ramsey Duncan, Chandler Duncan, Joella Duncan, Brittany Bennett, Dylan Duncan, Devyn Duncan; Great Grandchildren; Colton Ronco, Owen Gauntt, Jett, Kru and Riley. She was a loving mother, grandmother, great grandmother, sister and will be greatly missed by all who loved and adored her.

Funeral services will be held on Tuesday, October 14, 2014 at 11:00 am at Crossroads Baptist Church, Fort Myers. Interment will be in Alva Cemetery, Alva, FL. Visitation will be 1 hour prior to service at Crossroads Baptist Church.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Hope Hospice, 9470 Healthpark Cir., Ft. Myers, FL 33908 or ALS Clinic, 13601 Plantation Rd., Ft. Myers, FL 33912.

Stamo Z. Poulos, 90, of Fredericksburg, passed away Monday, October 6, 2014 in Clewiston, FL.

Mrs. Poulos was a founding member of the Nativity of the Theotokos Greek Orthodox Church, a member of the Ladies Philoptochos Society, a member of the Ann Page Garden Club and a member of the Auxiliary at Hendry Medical Center in Clewiston and WINGS (Women In God's Service). She retired from Fredericksburg public schools 2006, after 38 years.

Survivors include her children, Tena Harris (Frank) of Clewiston, FL; and Dennis Poulos of Arlington Heights, IL; sister, Georgia Raftelis (Mitchel) of Quantico; grandchildren, Christina Harris of Baltimore, Frank Harris Jr. of New York City, Nick Poulos (Natalie) of Los Angeles, Chris Poulos (Molly) of Chicago and Zach Poulos of Arlington Heights, IL; several nieces, nephews, great nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Chris H. Poulos; brother, Steve D Zapantis; sisters Antigone "Toni" Adelonis and Vivian "V.V." Pappas.

The family will receive friends from 4 to 6 pm Sunday, October 12 at Covenant Funeral Service, Fredericksburg. A prayer service will be held at 5 pm.

A service will be held at 11 am Monday, October 13 at the Nativity of the Theotokos Greek Orthodox Church. Interment will follow in Oak Hill Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Hendry Regional Medical Center Foundation at 544 West Sugarland Highway Clewiston, Florida 33440

Whistleblowers Get $3,9 Million In Boeing Aircraft Settlement

Boeing Pays $23 Million to Resolve False Claims Act Allegations
The Boeing Company paid $23 million to resolve allegations that it submitted false claims for labor charges on maintenance contracts with the U.S. Air Force for the C-17 Globemaster aircraft, the Justice Department announced yesterday. 

Two former employees individuals who filed the suit as "whistleblowers" will receive $3,910,000 as their share of the settlement.

Boeing, an aerospace and defense industry giant, is headquartered in Chicago.

The government alleged that Boeing improperly charged labor costs under contracts with the Air Force for the maintenance and repair of C-17 Globemaster aircraft at Boeing’s Aerospace Support Center in San Antonio, Texas. The C-17 Globemaster aircraft, which is both manufactured and maintained by Boeing, is one of the military’s major systems for transporting troops and cargo throughout the world. The government alleged that the company knowingly and improperly billed a variety of labor costs in violation of applicable contract requirements, including for time its mechanics spent at meetings not directly related to the contracts.

The settlement resolves allegations originally brought in a lawsuit by present and former Boeing employees Clinton Craddock, Fred Van Shoubrouek, Anthony Rico and Fernando de la Garza in federal court in San Antonio under the False Claims Act. The act permits private parties to sue for false claims on behalf of the United States and to share in any recovery.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Obituaries - Ronald Shaw, Sarah Norman

Ronald W Shaw, age 77, of Clewiston, passed away October 6, 2014 in Clewiston.

He was born Aug. 20, 1937 in York, PA, to the late Walter and the late Avonelle (Zuck) Shaw. Mr. Shaw married Mary Ellen Fontenot. He served his country in the United States Navy. He worked for the city of Clewiston as an Operator for many years until his retirement in 2010. He was a member of the Moose, VFW, and a former member of the Elks Lodge.

He was a loving husband, father, brother, grandfather and friend who will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.

Survivors include his wife: Mary Ellen Shaw, two sons: Robert Shaw, Joseph Shaw, Sr and two daughters: Rhonda Shaw, Rae Bowman one sister: Janice Shaw and six grandchildren.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, October 11, 2014 at 11:00 am at Akin-Davis Funeral Home, Clewiston with Pastor Steven Hedrick officiating. Interment will be in Ridgelawn Cemetery, Clewiston. Visitation will be Friday from 6-8 p.m. at Akin-Davis Funeral Home, Clewiston, FL.

Sarah Elizabeth Norman, age 92, of Clewiston passed away from this life on October 6, 2014, in Fort Myers, Florida.

Sarah was born on October 27, 1921, in Georgia the daughter of Robert Bruce and Mary Elizabeth Hasty Griner. She met and married the love of her life William A. Norman on April 14, 1946 in Kingsland, Georgia; he preceded her in death on July 19, 2010. She and William owned and operated Bill Norman Goodyear Tire in Clewiston, LaBelle, Belle Glade, Wauchula and West Palm Beach and owned the Western Auto in Clewiston for many years.

Sarah leaves behind her sister; Fairy Thompson and several nieces and one nephew along with her sister-in-law; Talmadge Griner who took great care of Sarah for many years.

Services celebrating her life will be held Friday, October 10, 2014 in Akin-Davis Funeral Home, Clewiston at 1:00 p.m., graveside services will be held on Sunday, October 13, 2014 in Pineview Cemetery in Folkston, Georgia. Local Services are handled by Akin-Davis Funeral Home - Clewiston and Shepard Funeral Home in Folkston, Georgia.

Florida Officials Concerned About West Africans At Meeting?

West Africans Causing Concern To Florida Officials
Today, Florida's Joint Information Center and the Emergency Response Team provided an update on the state’s preparedness efforts for Ebola and mentioned concerns about students from Liberian and West African delegates attending a meeting on the east coast of Florida.

A press release said, "The Department of Health learned Wednesday evening that the “Millennium Campus Network” is hosting an international summit on global development at Lynn University in Boca Raton, which will include West African delegates, students from Liberia, U.S. Secretary of State officials, leaders of the Peace Corps, the World Health Organization, and several other high-level federal officials.

"State officials with the Department of Health and the Division of Emergency Management have reached out to federal authorities to determine what kind of safeguards the federal officials have put in place to ensure the health and safety of conference attendees and Floridians during the meeting."

Is Marijuana Safe? 20 Years Of Research

Recreational cannabis use has grown tremendously over the last 20 years becoming almost as common as tobacco use among adolescents and young adults. A major new review of the literature in the scientific journal Addiction provides the latest information on the effects of cannabis use on mental and physical health.

After reviewing the latest evidence the journal says there are many adverse effects for marijuana users, and especially for adolescents.

Adverse Effects of Acute Cannabis Use

Cannabis does not produce fatal overdoses.
Driving while cannabis-intoxicated doubles the risk of a car crash; this risk increases substantially if users are also alcohol-intoxicated.
Cannabis use during pregnancy slightly reduces birth weight of the baby.

Adverse Effects of Chronic Cannabis Use
Regular cannabis users can develop a dependence syndrome, the risks of which are around 1 in 10 of all cannabis users and 1 in 6 among those who start in adolescence.
Regular cannabis users double their risks of experiencing psychotic symptoms and disorders, especially if they have a personal or family history of psychotic disorders, and if they start using cannabis in their mid-teens.
Regular adolescent cannabis users have lower educational attainment than non-using peers but we don't know whether the link is causal.
Regular adolescent cannabis users are more likely to use other illicit drugs, but we don't know whether the link is causal.
Regular cannabis use that begins in adolescence and continues throughout young adulthood appears to produce intellectual impairment, but the mechanism and reversibility of the impairment is unclear.
Regular cannabis use in adolescence approximately doubles the risk of being diagnosed with schizophrenia or reporting psychotic symptoms in adulthood.
Regular cannabis smokers have a higher risk of developing chronic bronchitis.
Cannabis smoking by middle aged adults probably increases the risk of myocardial infarction.

From Addiction, Oct. 6, 2014 and Medical News Today

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

AT&T Pays $101 Million To Settle Phone Cramming Charges

1.4 Million Florida AT&T Mobile Phone Accounts Due For Refunds
Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi today announced a $105 million landmark settlement with AT&T Mobility, LLC to resolve allegations that AT&T Mobility placed charges for third-party services on consumers' mobile telephone bills that had not been authorized by the consumer, a practice known as "mobile cramming.” 

More than 1.4 million Florida AT&T Mobility accounts could receive refunds under this settlement and all AT&T Mobility users will be affected by the terms of the agreement requiring AT&T Mobility to make changes to the way it handles third-party charges.

Attorney General Bondi’s Office was joined in this settlement by the attorneys general of the other 49 states and the District of Columbia, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Federal Communications Commission. AT&T Mobility is required to provide $80 million to pay refunds to consumers who were victims of cramming, and the fund will be administered by the Federal Trade Commission.

AT&T Mobility will pay $20 million to the attorneys general and $5 million to the Federal Communications Commission. Florida’s monetary share for participating in the settlement will be more than $1 million. Attorney General Bondi’s Office served on the Executive Committee, along with six other states, that negotiated this settlement.

"This is a major victory for our consumers who have the right to expect fair and accurate telephone bills," stated Attorney General Pam Bondi.

Consumers who have been “crammed” often complain about charges, typically $9.99 per month, for “premium” text message subscription services, also known as “PSMS” subscription, such as horoscopes, trivia, and sports scores, that the consumers have never heard of or requested.

AT&T Mobility is the first mobile telephone provider to enter into national settlement to resolve allegations regarding cramming. AT&T Mobility was among the four major mobile carriers—in addition to Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile—that announced it would cease billing their customers for commercial PSMS charges last November.

The settlement requires AT&T Mobility to stay out of the commercial PSMS business. Additional terms require AT&T Mobility to take a number of steps designed to ensure that it only bills consumers for third-party charges that have been authorized, including the following:· AT&T Mobility must obtain consumers’ express consent before billing consumers for third-party charges, and must ensure that consumers are only charged for services if the consumer has been informed of all material terms and conditions of their payment;

· AT&T Mobility must provide a full refund or credit to consumers who are billed for unauthorized third-party charges at any time after this settlement;

· AT&T Mobility must inform its customers when the consumers sign-up for services that their mobile phone can be used to pay for third-party charges, and must inform consumers of how those third-party charges can be blocked if the consumer doesn’t want to use their phone as a payment method for third-party products; and

· AT&T Mobility must present third-party charges in a dedicated section of consumers’ mobile phone bills, must clearly distinguish them from AT&T Mobility’s charges, and must include in that same section information about the consumers’ ability to block third-party charges.

Florida was joined on the Executive Committee by the following states: Delaware, Maryland, Oregon, Texas, Vermont, and Washington.

Captain Dick Lynn Dies At 88

Richard James Lynn, 88, better known as "Captain" or "Dick Lynn" of LaBelle, FL, formerly from Kansas City, Missouri departed this life for his next voyage on October 1, 2014 while surrounded by his family he loved so deeply. 

Richard and his family settled in LaBelle over 16 years ago and built a home on the Caloosahatchee River where many a special event were held. Richard was unselfish with his time and equipment, he was dedicated to quiet community service and the betterment of LaBelle thru service to church, school, civic groups, Habitat for Humanity and the United Way. Richard owned and operated 4 game rooms in the area: the Lion's Den in LaBelle, Let It Roll in Clewiston, Pennies from Haven in Moore Haven and the Pyramid in Lehigh Acres. 

A celebration of his life was held October 5, 2014 at Our Lady Queen of Heaven Catholic Church followed by a gathering of family and friends at the family home where his years of military service were honored by the playing of Taps before sundown.

Richard was born on December 25, 1925 in Kansas City, Missouri to James Harrison and Virginia Belle (Ashurst) Lynn. He graduated from N.E. High School and attended Kansas City Jr. College. Richard was a veteran of the U.S. Army Air Corps in World War II where he served in the occupation forces of Japan and the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War. Amongst his many business endeavors, Richard was a grocery-man and butcher at Lynn's Markets, the first grocery chain in K.C. He also developed real estate in Kansas, Missouri and Florida where his generosity allowed many families to own their own homes.

Richard's greatest passion was discovered as a young man when he found the Missouri River. Without hesitation he started and operated the Sharlyn Marina and restaurant for 10 years; the first and last marina on the Missouri River in the Kansas City area. Several years later a horrific fire consumed the marina and over 100 boats in storage. Richard began again only this time he chose riverboats. 

He began with a 60 passenger boat and opened the Kansas City Riverboat Co. in K.C., MO. During the 18 years he operated there he built the Missouri River Queen, a 600 passenger, triple decker, sternwheel riverboat (now the Georgia Queen in Savannah, Georgia). With a vision and burning desire to grow he moved his entire fleet to Kansas City, KS and built River City USA. 

It was here he added the retired U.S. Army Corps of Engineers dredge William S. Mitchell; 320 foot side-wheel dredge. He converted the goliath vessel to a living museum. He added two restaurants, a carrousel, an aviary and two passenger trains with the longest 24 gauge underground tunnel in the country. It was there he built his largest and last vessel (800 passengers) the America.

Richard spent over 35 years carrying more than a million passengers safely on the Missouri River and its' tributaries. In addition, he assisted the local civil defense, fire and police departments and the US Coast Guard in numerous search and rescue operations.
Captain Lynn was awarded the Congressional Silver Life Saving Medal of Honor, which was presented by Senator Bob Dole. In addition, his first mate aboard the motor vessel, The Westport Landing, was also awarded a presidential citation by President Richard Nixon. He was a founding member of the Passenger Vessel Association. Richard's foresight and determination set the wheels in motion for this small, fledgling operation to grow to over 600 national and international members today. He has been inducted into the Hometown Heroes of Kansas City, as well as the Hall of Fame for the Passenger Vessel Association, Washington, D.C.

Richard is survived by his wife Kathleen (K.C.) Stanley-Lynn of the home; his sons Richard J. Lynn and wife Kimberly of Kansas City, MO, David J. Lynn and Darlene of Seymour, MO and Wolfgang J. Lynn student at UCF; his daughters Katherine (K.C.) Lynn of Lake Worth, FL and Charlie A. Lynn of the home; his grandchildren Kari (Lynn) Tomlinson and husband Jeremy, Sparkle, Crystal, Richard (Ricky) and Joseph (Joey) Lynn of Kansas City, MO; his great-grandchildren Chloe, Amelia and Jack Tomlinson of Grain Valley, MO; sisters Celia Irwin and husband Marty and Virgie Holberg and husband Dave; mother in-law Mary Bernadine Mendon-Stanley; brother in-law Joe Stanley (UPS) and 15 other brother and sister in-laws; over 30 nieces and nephews; and his furry "monochromatic pup", Rocky; as well as many, many friends. 

Holocaust Boxcar Display At LaBelle School This Week

LABELLE, FL. -- LaBelle Middle School once again is hosting the Holocaust Box Car from The Holocaust Museum & Education Center of Southwest Florida in Naples, FL. 

The Box Car will be on site at LMS from Monday, October 6th through Friday, October 17th. On Tuesday, October 14th, will be a community night where local citizens will be able to come out and experience the Box Car exhibit and listen to a survivor talk about their experiences in a concentration camp. 

The speaker will begin at 6:00 pm. The Box Car is located in the east parking lot (in front of the gym). There will be signs to direct visitors to the speaker location and there will be student work on display in the library.

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Homes Wanted For Cats - Owner Passed Away At Hospice

Two Cats Need New Homes!
Sarann passed away recently in Hope hospice. She left behind two beautiful cats. Sarann’s family are all out of state. Her Health Care Surrogate turned to us to see if we could help find new homes for the cats.

Sweety is a 10-year old female cat. She loves attention.

Taz is a 7-year old male cat that is standoffish until he gets to know you, then he will let you rub his belly, something he really enjoys.

Both are house trained, indoor cats, with up to date shots. They get along really well.

Can you help us find new homes for Sweety and Taz?

Hope can help pay for the cats’ exams/treatments, grooming, and start up supplies and we can even you get established with a local vet.

If interested, please contact Colette at 985-7728 or email at

Pet Peace of Mind® (PPOM) is a Hope program designed to provide assistance to our patients and their pets, based on financial and/or physical needs. All requests will be considered on an individual basis.

Tomorrow Is Walk And Bike To School Day

Concern For Environment - Increasing Physical Activity In Kids Among Goals

LABELLE, FL. -- Schools across the state will join schools from around the world to celebrate International Walk to School Day on October 8, 2014. Walk to School Day events raise awareness of the need to create safer routes for walking and bicycling and emphasize the importance of issues such as increasing physical activity among children, pedestrian safety, traffic congestion and concern for the environment.

The events build connections between families, schools and the broader community. Approximately 100,000 students in over 375 schools in Florida will be walking and biking to school on Wednesday along with parents, teachers and community leaders.

FDOT Chief Safety Officer, Lora Hollingsworth said, “Bicycle and pedestrian safety is a top initiative for the department. Walking to school creates healthy habits for students and families, and we want to ensure a safe way for them to get there and home safely.”

Organizations supporting International Walk to School Day in the United States include America Walks, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Federal Highway Administration, the Institute of Transportation Engineers, the National Center for Safe Routes to School, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Safe Kids Worldwide, and the Safe Routes to School National Partnership.

For additional local information, please contact your local school district to see what schools will be participating.

For additional information, please visit these websites:

Walk to School Day in the USA
National Center for Safe Routes to School
International Walk to School Day

Monday, October 06, 2014

Muse Community Recognized For Fire Prevention Efforts

MUSE, Fl. -- The Florida Forest Service will present a 10 year recognition award to the Muse Community in Glades County, FL on October 16, 2014 at 7pm at the Muse Community Center. 

The Florida Forest Service would like to “Thank” the Muse Community for its diligence and commitment to the National Firewise Communities USA program. From the smallest project of cleaning the debris off their roofs to the largest undertaking of clearing flammable vegetation 30 feet away from their houses, the Muse Community’s dedication to reducing wildfire risk is commendable.

Senior Ranger Danny Callahan, Florida Forest Service will present Jimmy Cianfrani and the Muse Community a 10 Year Firewise Service Award.

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Governor Opens Ebola Information Center

Patient In Miami Hospital Tested For Ebola

Florida Governor Rick Scott released the following statement today announcing the opening of a Information Center through the Division of Emergency Management and further state preparedness actions while the Department of Health works with the CDC to test a patient for Ebola in Miami:

“Florida’s Department of Health is working with the federal CDC to test a patient at a local Miami hospital who was screened today for Ebola. It’s important to point out that this patient did not meet the CDC case definition for Ebola, but the test is being conducted out of an abundance of caution and health officials expect the test to rule out Ebola. We are in close communication with Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine, Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez, and other local officials and health leaders in Miami-Dade.

“As we announced after our health briefing yesterday, Florida still does not have any confirmed cases of Ebola, and we hope we never do, but we are taking every preparedness step possible to keep our citizens and our visitors safe.

“We know from our experience in responding to hurricanes that we must prepare for the worst even as we hope for the best. As part of those preparedness efforts, Florida’s Department of Health today requested 30 additional Ebola testing kits from the CDC. This number of kits ensures that all of Florida’s 30 public hospitals have the ability to test patients who county health officials and the CDC believe need to be tested for Ebola. Additionally, the Department of Health requested 100 units of additional high-level personal protective equipment to ensure the state is ready to backfill any county whose medical personnel develop a future need for these supplies.

“We know Florida’s hospitals and county health offices are prepared to identify and treat patients who may have Ebola. While they are prepared on the local level, the state is requesting increased federal resources out of an abundance of caution for the unlikely event that we may have an extended response that warrants additional resources.

“In order to keep Floridians best informed about the Miami patient and any future developments, I have also asked the Division of Emergency Management to activate the state’s Joint Information Center tomorrow, Monday, at 9AM. Our first priority is to keep Florida’s residents and visitors safe and a big part of this effort will be to share accurate, timely information with the public.”

Saturday, October 04, 2014

Governor Says No Ebola Here, But State Is Prepared

Florida Governor Rick Scott had a briefing with state health officials Saturday on Florida’s efforts to prepare for a possible case of Ebola. Included in the briefing were State Surgeon General John Armstrong, Division of Emergency Management Director Bryan Koon, and Agency for Healthcare Administration Secretary Elizabeth Dudek.

Governor Rick Scott said, “While we have no confirmed cases of Ebola in Florida, and we hope we never do, we are continuing to prepare by working with healthcare providers across the state and the CDC to ensure every precaution is taken to protect our citizens and our visitors. Our Department of Health continues to be in constant communication with every county health office, our hospitals and the federal CDC. We know there is currently a patient being treated for symptoms in Sarasota at Sarasota Memorial Hospital. This patient is being monitored and treated in isolation as a precaution because he had recently traveled to West Africa.

“It is important to stress that our state health officials and those at the county and local levels are incredibly prepared to rapidly respond to even the possibility of this disease. Our number one priority is the health and wellbeing of every Floridian and all those who visit the Sunshine State. We will remain vigilant in our readiness to combat this disease and we will regularly share any important updates with Floridians.”

Florida Department of Health Preparedness Efforts

· The Department is working in consultation with the CDC to determine on a case-by-case basis whether testing for Ebola is necessary. The Department’s Bureau of Public Health Laboratories has the capacity to conduct preliminary Ebola testing. One test has been conducted to date and the results were negative, as the CDC announced on September 8, 2014.

· The Department is disseminating detailed recommendations to every hospital in Florida for detecting suspected Ebola virus among persons returning from affected countries and preventing transmission within medical facilities.

· Health Officers in each of the Department’s 67 county health offices have been meeting with hospital staff on an ongoing basis to review protocols and guidelines for responding to a possible Ebola diagnosis.

· The Department is providing training to county public health officials on investigating and responding to persons with the suspected Ebola virus disease.

· The Department is working to disseminate information and guidance to law enforcement, the Florida Fire Chiefs Association, EMS staff and 911 operators. Every EMS unit in Florida is trained and equipped to transport patients with infectious diseases.

Will U.S. Sugar Turn Clewiston And Moore Haven Into Ghost Towns?

Communities Say "No" To Giant U.S. Sugar Land Plan

FORT MYERS, FL. -- Two coastal communities held simultaneous protests this week to demand Florida Department of Environmental Protection reject U.S. Sugar's "sector plan" Sugar Hill, a proposal which community groups say could result in a gigantic city built in the Everglades, and turn Hendry and Glades county's largest cities, Clewiston and Moore Haven, into ghost towns.

Environmentalists, community activists, elected officials, chamber of commerce officials, Realtors and business owners called upon Governor Rick Scott and his agencies to reject the development and buy US Sugar's land, protesting at FDEP offices in Ft. Myers and simultaneously in Ft. Pierce.

(photo courtesy Cyndi Lenz)

U.S. Sugar and Hilliard Brother's "Sugar Hill" would create zoning for a massive, sprawling city between the Everglades and its water source, Lake Okeechobee. The 67-square-mile project would bring the possibility of 18,000 new residential units and 25 million square feet of commercial, industrial, office and retail buildings directly into the Everglades Agricultural Area.

The Sierra Club says Hendry County already has two recently-approved sector plans and can build its economy without involving the lands optioned in the U.S. Sugar Land Acquisition contract and the Sugar Hill Sector Plan would draw infrastructure spending away from the established cities of Clewiston and Moore Haven to speculative warehouses, strip malls and suburban housing on U.S. Sugar Corp’s land.

The Sierra Club said this will end up for Hendry County residents "subsidizing U.S. Sugar’s sprawling city and turn the Clewiston and Moore Haven into ghost towns," while approval of the Sugar Hill Sector Plan "guarantees no economic development. It is a speculative, 50 year plan, which simply gives the landowner 'options' over that lengthy timeframe."

Speakers at the protests warned that the massive city planned south of Lake Okeechobee could sabotage efforts to protect the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie estuaries and to restore the Everglades. It would ensure continued environmental and financial devastation for coastal communities as water from the Lake continues to be released east and west during the rainy season instead of being sent south the Everglades.

“The proposed Sugar Hill Sector Plan would impact the State’s ability and contract right to purchase these lands to be used for moving water south from Lake Okeechobee to the Everglades and stopping the destructive discharges to the coastal estuaries,” said Mark Perry, Executive Director of the Florida Oceanographic Society in Stuart.

The South Florida Water Management District has an option to buy 48,600 acres of U.S. Sugar land by October 2015. Over 13,000 acres of that land falls within the Sugar Hill city plan. 

Sewall's Point (in Stewart, Fl) Commissioner Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch pointed out the importance of maintaining options for sending water south: "There are many ways of sending the water south. We need to reserve all of these lands for trading and conservation in the future -- and for the kids."

Mark Anderson, Ft. Myers business and property owner, and representative of the Sanibel Captiva Chamber of Commerce, said: “Endless studies have confirmed the importance of restoring the connection from Lake Okeechobee and the Everglades to create a southward flow of water between the two. The studies are conclusive: it is now action that is needed to acquire the land needed for restoration and not development.”

Speaking on behalf of the Martin County Conservation Alliance, Maggy Hurchalla, five-term Martin County Commissioner and member of the Everglades Hall of Fame, said, “If [Sugar Hill] is approved, then we are saying as a state that this is what we want to happen. We are committing local, state, and national resources to making it happen. We can't commit to restoring the Everglades and destroying the Everglades at the same time. We need the state to tell the world that Florida's choice will be restoring the Everglades."

"The Florida Department of Environmental Protection should formally advise the Department of Economic Opportunity to reject the Sector Plan because of its adverse effect on the Florida Everglades and the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie estuaries, and the flood control, water supply and economic functions they provide to nearly 8 million Floridians,” said Julia Hathaway, organizer for the Sierra Club in West Palm Beach.

Dave Kirwan, Board Member of Reef Relief and a Cape Coral resident stated: “The Sugar Hill Sector Plan is a very bad idea for water quality and the environment of South Florida. Everglades restoration and improving the water quality of Florida Bay is critical to protecting and preserving Florida’s Barrier Reef; the only living coral reef in North America and the third largest in the World.”

A statement by Paton White, President of the Audubon Society of the Everglades said: “Clearly, the fast-tracking of such an ambitious and unprecedented development plan needs to slow down. We call on the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and the South Florida Water Management District to strongly oppose this short-sighted and inadequately researched plan when they make their comments this week to the Department of Economic Opportunity.”

Organizations involved in Ft. Myers and Ft. Pierce included: Sierra Club, Indian River Keeper, Sanibel Captiva Chamber of Commerce, Rivers Coalition, Sanibel Captiva Conservation Foundation, Reef Relief, Treasure Coast Progressive Alliance, Martin County Chapter of the Native Plant Society, River Kidz, Responsible Growth Management Coalition, Inc., and Audubon Society of the Everglades.

Simonsita Villarreal Dies At 68

Simonsita O. Villarreal, age 68, of LaBelle, passed away October 2, 2014 in Lehigh Acres.
She was born Aug. 1, 1946 in Edinburg, TX, to the late Ramon Salas Ozuna and the late Juventina (Trevino) Ozuna.

Survivors include three sons: Omero Villarreal, Edward Villarreal, Romero Villarreal and one daughter: Betsy Villarreal, grandchildren: Homer Villarreal, Justin Villarreal, Alex Villarreal, Jordan Villarreal, Amanda Reyna, Brandon Villarreal, Matthew Reyna, Julie Villarreal, Edward Villarreal, Michael Villarreal, Taylor Villarreal and Jade Villarreal, great-grandchildren: Kristopher Villarreal, Jordan Michael Villarreal and Nathaniel Villarreal and brothers and sisters. She was preceded in death by her grandson: Zachary Reyna

Funeral services will be held Saturday, October 4, 2014, 11:00 am at Akin-Davis Funeral Home in LaBelle with Pastor Mitchell Wills officiating. Interment follows in Fort Denaud Cemetery, LaBelle.

Man Killed On State Road 29

LABELLE, FL. -- Enrique Salazar-Alcantar, 35 of Lehigh Acres Florida was killed early Saturday morning on State Road 29 in Hendry county.

A 1995 Buick Skylard driven by Sharon Burks, 49 of LaBelle was traveling northbound on SR 29 south of Spencer Lane about 12:15 a.m. as Salazar-Alcantar was walking or standing within the outside portion of the northbound lane of SR 29, south of Spencer Lane.

He was not wearing any safety equipment but was wearing dark clothes and there were no street lights to illuminate the roadway. Alcohol use is pending.

The driver did not observe him and subsequently, the front right portion of the vehicle collided with the pedestrian who was propelled toward to the north and came to rest on the northbound lane of SR 29, south of Spencer Lane.

The vehicle was driven to a controlled stop on the east shoulder of SR 29, just south of Spencer Lane.

Charges are pending said FHP Trooper Danny Diaz and homicide investigator Corporal Jeffery Rongish.

If anyone witnessed the crash or noticed the behavior of the pedestrian before the crash contact 239-344-1730 EXT 38164, ATTENTION CORPORAL JEFF RONGISH

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Naslie Goette Finishes Basic Training At Fort Jackson

CLEWISTON, FL. -- Army Pvt. Naslie I. Goette has graduated from basic combat training at Fort Jackson, Columbia, S.C.

During the nine weeks of training, the soldier studied the Army mission, history, tradition and core values, physical fitness, and received instruction and practice in basic combat skills, military weapons, chemical warfare and bayonet training, drill and ceremony, marching, rifle marksmanship, armed and unarmed combat, map reading, field tactics, military courtesy, military justice system, basic first aid, foot marches, and field training exercises.

Goette is the daughter of Roberto Goette of Clewiston, Fla. and Yovana Alvarez of Miami, Fla., and daughter-in-law of Jessica Frenes of Clewiston, Fla.

She is a 2014 graduate of Clewiston High School, Clewiston, Fla.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Free Help With Medicare Drug And Advantage Plans

Have you been waiting to make changes to your Medicare Prescription Drug or Medicare Advantage plan? The long-awaited official period of change is quickly approaching. The Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) is the time to make the adjustments to your plan that will complement your health needs.

The Annual Enrollment Period runs from October 15, 2014, through December 7, 2014. During this time, lean on experts for advice and utilize a local, valuable resource: the SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) Program.

This is the time to:

• Choose a plan that covers your medications.
• Switch Prescription Drug Plans or Advantage Plans.
• Enroll for the first time if you did not enroll when you were first eligible

To receive help from SHINE arrange to speak with a trained SHINE counselor at 1-866-413-5337. For a listing of SHINE counseling sites and enrollment events, please visit