Alen County Young Authors celebration

Students, teachers and lovers of the written word assembled on Friday night for the 17th annual Allen County Young Authors’ celebration dinner.
In a world of 140 character ‘tweets’, grammatically-mangled ‘text-speak’ and wanton disregard for spelling or sentence structure, some might believe the old adage that ‘print is dead’. Friday night offered evidence of a very different kind. According to elementary school librarian and Chairman Deb Greenwall, this year’s Young Authors season was, in many ways, the most fruitful.
The program was created in 1999 by a grant from the Sleeper Family Trust, where elementary and middle school age students– with the help of their teachers– write, illustrate, edit, assemble and “publish” books born of their own imagining. The books are then judged, awarded and celebrated at the annual banquet.
Some of this year’s entries include titles like “The Purple Shoes,” “The Hamster in Space,” and “My Cat Grew a Mustache.”
Want to learn more? Buy the book!

Dog sled racer in Iola

Mark Dunlap gave Iola Rotarians an inside look at sled-dog racing Thursday. Dunlap was introduced by Rotarian Ann Shetlar, his sister.
A native of Elsmore, Dunlap’s affection for the outdoors led him to northern Minnesota where for 16 years he trained Alaskan huskies to race, with him precariously perched at the rear end of a sled.
Looking for a break in the monotony pf his day job, he acquired a Siberian husky from a local animal shelter. Dunlap’s interest in dog sled racing quickened and he learned all he could about Alaskan huskies and their propensity for speed, strength, endurance and, most importantly, love of racing.
His success included three championships and many second- and third-place finishes.
Dunlap worked at several jobs to support his interest. Expenses included feeding his dogs a special diet to keep them fit and healthy. Having realized dog-sled racing is a young man’s sport, Dunlap returned to Kansas in 2009.

Wade D. Fry obit

Wade D. Fry of Lansing, passed away at the age of 76 last Wednesday at his home, from complications due to Parkinson’s disease.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Leavenworth County Council on Aging. Visitation will be from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Wednesday at Davis Funeral Chapel, with the funeral service for Wade D. Fry to follow at 12:30 p.m. Burial will be in the Leavenworth National Cemetery.

Chanute 2nd in Kansas affordability

A study of housing affordability in Kansas lists Chanute as the second most affordable community, and Parsons as the most affordable in the state.
Chanute moved up from 11th in last year’s study on the website Smartasset. The study ranked communities on an affordability index that combined median income, average closing costs, annual property tax, annual homeowner insurance, and average annual mortgage payment.
The study only provided details of the top 10 communities, so Iola’s score was not released. Independence ranked fifth and Coffeyville was seventh. The scores were based on total cost over five years for every city with a population greater than 5,000, as a proportion of median household income.

Jerry R. Gleason obit

Former Iolan Jerry R. Gleason died Friday, April 22, in Aurora, Colorado.
A graveside funeral service for Jerry R. Gleason is planned for 2 p.m. on May 20 at Mount Olivet Cemtetery in Golden, Colorado
Memorials are suggested to The Denver Hospice.

Suspects charged with Cook murder

Two suspects have been charged with the murder of a man whose disappearance resulted in a countywide manhunt.
The body of 33-year-old Iolan Shawn Cook was discovered northwest of town on the banks of the Neosho river.
Allen County Attorney Jerry Hathaway announced this morning that first-degree murder charges were filed against Iolan Amber Boeken and Joshua Knapp of Bourbon County. Cook was last seen by relatives on March 13. He lived with his aunt, Becky Reaves, in the 400 block of South Kentucky Street.
He was reported missing March 17. Iola police, Allen County sheriff’s deputies and the Kansas Bureau of Investigation executed search warrants in Iola and Gas.
Boeken and Knapp were arrested on unrelated charges in March, but Knapp was considered a person of interest in the Cook homicide.

Thursday obits

Iola native Sharon Ann Miller, passed away Sunday at the age of 74. A Funeral Mass for Sharon Ann Miller will be at 10:30 a.m Friday at Holy Angels Catholic Church in Garnett. Sharon’s family will greet friends. A Rosary will be at 7 p.m. tonight at the church.

Barbara Sue (Thacker) Culbertson passed away on Monday at her Iola home. She was 68. Graveside services for Barbara Sue (Thacker) Culbertson will be at 2 p.m. Friday at Highland Cemetery in Iola. The family will greet friends following services at the First Christian Church, 1608 Oregon Rd.

Tempers high at Allen County Commissioners meeting

Temperatures ran high at the Allen County Commissioners meeting Tuesday morning.
Commissioner Tom Williams accused his colleagues of excessively supporting what he termed is a disgruntled employee, and called for the person’s firing.
Williams said someone on the countywide ambulance service was seeking a vote of no confidence against ambulance director Ryan Sell. He alleges the person contacted commissioners Jerry Daniels and Jim Talkington.
Fire Chief Tim Thyer said he was looking into the matter.
A letter from Terry Call, who has done ambulance billings, both when the county ran the service and now the city, generally praised the joint operation.

Barbara Sue Culbertson obit

Barbara Sue (Thacker) Culbertson, age 68, of Iola, Kansas, passed away on Monday, April 25 at her home.
Graveside services for Barbara Sue (Thacker) Culbertson will be held at 2:00 p.m., on Friday at Highland Cemetery in Iola, Kansas. The family will greet friends following services at the First Christian Church, 1608 Oregon Rd, in Iola. Memorial contributions can be made to Wings of Warriors or Colony Christian Church

Tornado watch in effect Tuesday ecening

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HAS ISSUED A TORNADO WATCH IN EFFECT UNTIL 9 PM CDT THIS EVENING FOR 24 COUNTIES IN KANSAS. This tornado alert includes Iola. Stay indoors if at all possible, and stay tuned for up-to-the-minute alerts from the National Weather Service Center in Wichita.