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David Deaton

David Deaton

Digital Editor at Oklahoma Welcome

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State Health Department Implementing Preparedness and Testing for Zika Virus


According to a press release from the Oklahoma State Deparment of Health, as public health and medical professionals are learning more about the effects of the Zika virus, the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) continues to broaden efforts to work with health care providers to identify potential travel-related cases, conduct testing in the state public health laboratory, and expand mosquito surveillance programs to determine presence and burden of the type of mosquito that is most likely to spread Zika virus.


Presently, the Zika virus is not being spread by mosquitoes in the US, but is spreading aggressively in regions of South and Central America and the Caribbean. As more travelers acquire Zika virus abroad and summer approaches, there is a potential for localized transmission to occur in the southern US, especially in states where the Aedes aegypti mosquito is plentiful. Collections of this type of mosquito in Oklahoma are not commonly recorded.


The most significant health risk of Zika virus infection is among pregnant women and their unborn babies. A study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently established that infection with Zika virus during pregnancy can result in fetal loss or severe birth defects involving the brain.


Measures implemented by OSDH to identify potential travel-related Zika virus cases among Oklahoma residents include a screening tool for maternity clinics and protocols for health care providers to assess information on patients to determine if Zika virus testing is indicated. OSDH Acute Disease Service epidemiologists are available 24/7 to consult with health care providers statewide to determine if their patients meet the criteria for testing and arrange for testing to be conducted.


OSDH has received confirmation of four travel-related cases affecting Oklahoma residents through test results provided by the CDC Arbovirus Laboratory in Ft. Collins, CO. One of the Oklahoma cases is a pregnant woman. The OSDH Public Health Laboratory has completed proficiency testing for Zika virus and has begun testing of specimens from Oklahoma patients to alleviate the delay in receiving results from the CDC.


Zika virus is transmitted to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes aegypti mosquito. It can also be spread through sexual contact with males who have the virus or from mother to unborn child. The disease can cause fever, rash, muscle and joint aches and red eyes. These symptoms typically last several days to a week, and hospitalizations are rare. Most people exposed to Zika virus won’t develop any symptoms at all.


“We are strongly recommending that pregnant women and spouses or sexual partners of women who are pregnant or might be pregnant, avoid traveling to areas where Zika virus has been identified if at all possible,” said Oklahoma State Epidemiologist Dr. Kristy Bradley. If travel cannot be avoided, persons in these high risk groups should rigorously practice mosquito bite precautions and notify their health care provider if any symptoms of illness occur within 2 weeks of travel.


OSDH has also enlisted the help of the Oklahoma State University Department of Entomology to conduct surveillance in five urban regions across the state for the presence of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes. The Oklahoma City-County and Tulsa Health Departments also have plans to expand their mosquito surveillance to monitor for the presence of this Zika virus vector in addition to trapping and testing of Culex mosquitoes, which spread West Nile virus.


The CDC and OSDH advise pregnant women to delay travel to foreign countries and U.S. territories where Zika virus is being transmitted. To prevent the spread of the disease, people traveling to those areas should carefully follow steps to avoid mosquito bites while there and for seven days after returning home.


Mosquito exposure prevention tips while traveling to affected areas include:


• Use air conditioning or window/door screens to keep mosquitoes outside. If you are not able to protect yourself from mosquitoes inside your hotel or sleeping place, sleep under a mosquito bed net.
• Use mosquito repellents according to instructions.
• If weather permits, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
• Treat clothing and gear with permethrin or purchase permethrin-treated items
• Help reduce the number of mosquitoes outside your residence, hotel room or workplace by emptying standing water from containers, such as flowerpots or buckets.

 


For more information on the Zika virus, visit www.ok.gov/health for links to fact sheets in English, Spanish and Portuguese, information from the CDC and World Health Organization (WHO) along with the most recent statistics on cases.



Monday, 18 April 2016 17:13

List of Top Safest Cities in Oklahoma

BackgroundChecks.org released its Annual "Safest Cities in Oklahoma" report for 2016.


To compile the report, BackgroundChecks.org combined data from recent FBI Crime Reports, natural language analysis, social media sentiment analysis and their own research to create a ranking of the 25 Safest Cities in Oklahoma.


"It's a true testament to great policing, strong leadership, and community involvement", said Jessica Pierce, a BackgroundChecks.org public safety analyst. "In a world full of bad news, it's great to have something positive for residents, and it's something to be proud of."

 

About BackgroundChecks.org
BackgroundChecks.org is a public safety focused organization committed to increasing public safety, community involvement, transparent government, and education. For useful information for Oklahoma residents, you can check out their Oklahoma Public Records page.

 

1 Edmond

 

Located in Oklahoma County, the city of Edmond is home to 81,400 residents. Considered a suburb of Oklahoma City, the community is the site of the University of Central Oklahoma as well as the home office of Homeland supermarkets, and was included on CNBC’s list of “10 Perfect Suburbs.” Edmond is the safest place to live in Oklahoma, with a violent crime rate of 101.8, and the chance of being affected by property crime here just 2%.

 

#2 Choctaw

 

Another city in Oklahoma County, Choctaw is home to 15,200 residents. Located just 10 miles from Oklahoma City, the community is the oldest chartered town in the state and is known for its popular eight-day Oktoberfest sponsored by the city each year. Another safe place to call home, the violent crime rate in Choctaw is 122.4, and the chance of being involved in a property crime here is just 1.8%.

 

#3 Moore

 

Located in Cleveland County, the city of Moore is home to 55,000 residents. The community sits between Oklahoma City and Norman and is the site of a large Veterans Memorial, which was destroyed by a 2013 tornado but then rebuilt. The violent crime rate in Moore is 135.9, and residents have a 4.2% chance of being affected by property crime.

 

#4 Yukon

 

A city in Canadian County, Yukon is home to 22,700 residents. Considered a suburb of Oklahoma City, the community was named after the Yukon Territory in Canada and was historically a mill town. The violent crime rate here is 139.6, and residents of Yukon have a 2.4% chance of being involved in a property crime.

 

#5 Norman

 

Located in Cleveland County, the city of Norman has a current population of 118,000 residents. Also the county seat, the community is just 20 miles south of Oklahoma City, is home to the University of Oklahoma, and was included on CNN Money’s list of best small cities in the U.S. The violent crime rate in Norman is 151.8, and the chance of being affected by property crime here is just 2.6%.

 

#6 Guthrie

 

A city in Logan County, Guthrie is home to 10,100 residents. Also the county seat, the community has many historic properties, is a popular rodeo event location, and is known for its annual Oklahoma International Bluegrass Festival. The violent crime rate here is 153.7, and residents of Guthrie have a 3% chance of being involved in a property crime.

 

#7 Broken Arrow

 

Located primarily in Tulsa County, the city of Broken Arrow is home to 98,800 residents. Considered the largest suburb of Tulsa, the community was originally agriculture-based but now hosts some large companies such as FlightSafety International and Blue Bell Creameries. The violent crime rate in Broken Arrow is 153.9, and the chance of being affected by property crime here is 2.1%.

 

#8 Mustang

 

A city in southeastern Canadian County, Mustang is home to 17,300 residents. Considered a suburb of Oklahoma City, the community encompasses 12 square miles and is served by the Mustang Public School District. The violent crime rate here is 160.1, and residents of Mustang have a 2.4% chance of being involved in a property crime.

 

#9 Jenks

 

Located in Tulsa County, the city of Jenks is home to 16,900 residents. This fast-growing community is considered a suburb of Tulsa, is situated along the Arkansas River, and is the site of the Oklahoma Aquarium. The violent crime rate in Jenks is 179.9, and the chance of being affected by property crime here is just 1.6%.

 

#10 Sand Springs

 

A city in Osage and Tulsa counties, Sand Springs is home to 18,900 residents. Another Tulsa suburb, this community was an early leader in glass manufacturing and is served by the Sand Springs School District. The violent crime rate here is 181.7, and residents of Sand Springs have a 4% chance of being involved in a property crime.

 

#11 Elk City

 

Located in Beckham County, Elk City is home to 11,600 residents. The community is over 100 miles west of Oklahoma City and serves as a center of commerce for the western part of the state. Energy production is dominant here, and the city has a large regional medical center. The violent crime rate in Elk City is 185.5, and the chance of being affected by property crime here is 2.7%.

 

#12 Owasso

 

A city in Rogers and Tulsa counties, Owasso is home to 28,900 residents. Considered a northern suburb of Tulsa, the community’s area is known as “Green Country” for its hills, lakes, and green vegetation. Major employers in the city include Whirlpool, Nordham Group, and American Airlines. The violent crime rate here is 186.4, and residents of Owasso have a 2.5% chance of being involved in a property crime.

 

#13 Sapulpa

 

Located in Creek and Tulsa counties, the city of Sapulpa is home to 20,500 residents. Also the county seat of Creek County, the community has a history in the production of walnuts, bricks, and glass, earning the nickname “The Crystal City of the Southwest.” The violent crime rate in Sapulpa is 235.4, and the chance of being affected by property crime here is just 2.3%.

 

#14 Guymon

 

A city in Texas County, Guymon is home to 11,400 residents. Also the county seat, the community’s economy is diverse and dominated by such things as energy production, cattle feedlots, and corporate pork farms. The city is also known for its Guymon Pioneer Days Rodeo each May. The violent crime rate here is 243.8, and residents of Guymon have a 2.6% chance of being involved in a property crime.

 

#15 Stillwater

 

Located in Payne County, the city of Stillwater has a current population of 46,500 residents. Also the county seat, the community is home to Oklahoma State University, several high-tech businesses, and the National Wrestling Hall of Fame and Museum. The violent crime rate in Stillwater is 261.2, and the chance of being affected by property crime here is 3.1%.

 

#16 Claremore

 

A city in Rogers County, Claremore is home to 18,500 residents. Also the county seat, the community is considered a suburb of Tulsa, is the site of Rogers State University, and is noted as the home of entertainer Will Rogers. The violent crime rate here is 265.1, and residents of Claremore have a 2.6% chance of being involved in a property crime.

 

#17 El Reno

 

Located in Canadian County, the city of El Reno is home to 16,700 residents. Also the county seat, the community is 25 miles west of Oklahoma City and is best known for its fried onion burger, upon which an entire festival is centered each May. The violent crime rate in El Reno is 270.5, and the chance of being affected by property crime here is 2.9%.

 

#18 Bartlesville

 

A city primarily in Washington County, Bartlesville has a current population of 36,200 residents. Also the county seat, the community is 18 miles from the Kansas state line and is noted as the longtime home of the Phillips Petroleum Company. The violent crime rate here is 272.6, and residents of Bartlesville have a 2.9% chance of being involved in a property crime.

 

#19 Tahlequah

 

Located in Cherokee County, the city of Tahlequah is home to 15,700 residents. Also the county seat, the community lies at the foothills of the Ozark Mountains, is the capital of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, and is the site of the main campus of Northeastern State University. The violent crime rate in Tahlequah is 291.6, and the chance of being affected by property crime here is 4.2%.

 

#20 McAlester

 

A city in Pittsburgh County, McAlester is home to 17,700 residents. Also the county seat, the community is the largest city in the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma and is the site of the Oklahoma State Penitentiary. The violent crime rate here is 309.5, and residents of McAlester have a 5.1% chance of being involved in a property crime.

 

#21 Altus

 

Located in Jackson County, the city of Altus is home to 19,800 residents. Also the county seat, the community is home to Altus Air Force Base, as well as two colleges: Southwest Technology Center and Western Oklahoma State College. The violent crime rate in Altus is 316, and the chance of being affected by a property crime here is 3.4%.

 

#22 Enid

 

A city in Garfield County, Enid is home to 49,300 residents. The community has the third largest grain storage capacity in the world, and its economy is based on both energy and agriculture. Enid is home to the Tri-State Music Festival and major companies in the area include Atwood Distributing and Johnston Enterprises. The violent crime rate here is 329.6, and residents of Enid have a 3.9% chance of being involved in a property crime.

 

#23 Bethany

 

Located in Oklahoma County, the city of Bethany is home to 19,000 residents. Considered a suburb of Oklahoma City, the community was founded by the Church of the Nazarene and is the site of Southern Nazarene University and Southwestern Christian University. The violent crime rate in Bethany is 363.6, and the chance of being affected by property crime here is 3.6%.

 

#24 Weatherford

 

A city in Custer County, Weatherford is home to 10,800 residents. The community was incorporated in 1898, is the site of Southwestern Oklahoma State University and a Kodak manufacturing plant, and is known for its popular Stafford Air & Space Museum. The violent crime rate here is 399.8, and residents of Weatherford have a 2.3% chance of being involved in a property crime.

 

#25 Okmulgee

 

Located in Okmulgee County, the city of Okmulgee is home to 12,300 residents. The community is the capital of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation and has a diverse economy based on retail, healthcare, and construction. The violent crime rate in Okmulgee is 420.7, and the chance of being affected by property crime here is 3.7%.

 

 

Several members and advisors of Carl Albert State College’s Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) Chapter, Alpha Delta Lambda, attended the 2016 PTK International Convention in National Harbor, Maryland.

 

 

Pictured are PTK Advisor Annette Staats, PTK Vice President of Service Marie Hurtado from Poteau, PTK Vice President of Fellowship Haley Huff from Spiro, PTK Vice President of Leadership Shelbie Vaught from Valliant, PTK Chapter President Rachel Carlile from Hugo, and PTK Advisor Marsha Caughern.

Wanda Faye “Sal” Faulkenberry of Howe, Oklahoma was born August 19, 1934 in Howe, Oklahoma to Morris and Ova Loy (Dickerson) Faulkenberry and passed away April 19, 2016 in Poteau, Oklahoma at the age of 81 years.

 

She is survived by:Two sisters:
Lois Brown of Pocola, Oklahoma
Mary Sue Highfill of Heavener, Oklahoma

One brother:
Marshall Faulkenberry, Sr. and wife Tonja of Howe, Oklahoma

Numerous nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, cousins, other family members and friends.

 

She was preceded in death by three brothers-in-law, Chester Bowles, Lloyd Brown, and Glen Highfill; and one special niece, Glenda McDonald. 

 

Wanda was a life-long resident of Howe and was a special person who loved everyone, especially little children.

 

Funeral service will be 2:00 p.m., Thursday, April 21, 2016 at Dowden-Roberts Funeral Home Chapel with Reverend Marshall Faulkenberry, Jr. officiating.

 

Burial will follow in Howe Cemetery under the direction of Dowden-Roberts Funeral Home of Heavener, Oklahoma.

 

Viewing will be 8:30 a.m. until 8:30 p.m., Wednesday and 8:30 a.m. until service time Thursday at the funeral home.

 

To sign Miss. Faulkenberry’s online guestbook please visit www.dowdenrobertsfuneralhome.com

 

Tuesday, 19 April 2016 22:59

Laverne (Brown) Maxwell Obituary

Laverne (Brown) Maxwell of Heavener, Oklahoma was born May 6, 1933 in Haw Creek, Oklahoma to Walter and Maggie (Watson) Brown and passed away April 18, 2016 in Fort Smith, Arkansas at the age of 82.

 

She is survived by:Two daughters:


Glenda Marie Justice and husband Jerry of Pocola, Oklahoma
Linda Cauthron of Pocola, Oklahoma

Two sons:
Heath Williams and wife Karen of Van Buren, Arkansas
Keith Williams and wife Kristy of Verona, Missouri

One sister:
Jewel Holmes of Sallisaw, Oklahoma

Two brothers:
Delbert Brown of Panama, Oklahoma
Otis Brown of Hodgen, Oklahoma

11 grandchildren:
Melinda Goins, David Justice, Dalton Justice, Gary Williams, Loreanna Stewart, Kyle Williams, Harlan Broyles, Austin Broyles, Austin Williams, Lane Williams, and Vanessa Thom

Eight great-grandchildren:
Eric Justice, Adam Justice, Dresden Goins, Zaiden Goins, Adiana Stewart, John Justice, Jaden Johnston, and Alice JohnstonNumerous nieces, nephews, other family members, and friends.

 

Laverne was a life-long resident of the area and loved to sing and play her guitar.Funeral service will be 2:00 p.m., Friday, April 22, 2016 at Dowden-Roberts Funeral Home Chapel with Reverend Jimmy Morton officiating. 

 

Burial will follow in Haw Creek Cemetery under the direction of Dowden-Roberts Funeral Home of Heavener, Oklahoma.

 

Pallbearers will be her grandsons.

 

Viewing will be from Noon until 8:30 p.m., Wednesday and 8:30 a.m. until 8:30 p.m., Thursday, with the family visiting with friends from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m., Thursday evening at the funeral home.

 

To sign Mrs. Maxwell’s online guestbook please visit www.dowdenrobertsfuneralhome.com

Tuesday, 19 April 2016 00:31

Curtis Myers Obituary

Curtis Myers, 91, of Shady Point, OK passed away Monday, April 18, 2016 in Ft. Smith, AR.

 

 

Curtis was the son of the late Bruce and Stella (McKnight) Myers of Ada, OK. Curtis was born May 28, 1924 in Egypt, OK. He was united in marriage to Opheline Abbott November 11, 1944 at their preacher's home in Ada.

 

 

Curtis had numerous jobs in the milk industry. He worked at Colverts Dairy in Ada until 1972. He and Opheline moved to Poteau, OK in 1972 where they opened the Sonic Drive-In.

 

 

Curtis was an avid horseman his whole life, working cattle and just riding horses which he loved. He enjoyed hunting, camping, 4-wheeling and family gatherings.

 

 

He left many wonderful memories and was loved dearly. He will be missed by all.

 

 

He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Opheline (5/18/2013); brother, Leonard and sisters, Charlene & Nadine.

 

 

Survivors include his daughter & son in law, Geraldine & Jerry Haskins of Ashdown, AR; sons & daughters in law, Don & Judye Myers of Mena, AR, Danny & Timmie Myers of Shady Point, OK; grandchildren, Jeffrey & Machelle Haskins, Tracy Womack all of Ashdown, AR, Cotye Myers, Brandi & David Sachs , Justin & Kendra all of Mena, AR, Tory & Satin Myers of Rosebud, AR, Tyla Myers of Shady Point, OK; 15 great grandchildren; 1 great great grandchild; other relatives, loved ones and friends.

 

 

Services will be 10 am, Wednesday, April 20, 2016 at Shady Point Assembly of God Church. Burial will be 2 pm, at Memorial Gardens, Ada, OK.

 

 

Pallbearers will be his grandsons.

 

 

The family will be at the funeral home on Tuesday evening from 6-8 pm to visit with relatives & friends.

 

 

You may leave an online message at www.evansandmillerfuneralhomes.com

 

 

MUSKOGEE, OKLAHOMA - The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Oklahoma, announced that Phillip Earl Amey, a/k/a Crazy, age 34, of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, was sentenced to 188 months imprisonment, followed by 5 years of supervised release for DRUG CONSPIRACY.

 

The Indictment alleged that beginning in or about July 2014, the exact date being unknown to the Grand Jury, and continuing until on or about April 7, 2015, within the Eastern District of Oklahoma and elsewhere, the defendant, PHILLIP EARL AMEY, a/k/a Crazy, did knowingly and intentionally conspire, confederate and agree together and with David Dean Cagle, Brandon Michael Jones, Gilbert Espinoza, a/k/a Snow, Jonathan Miranda, Jessica Suzanne Felix, a/k/a Sarah, and others, to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute 500 grams or more of a mixture or substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine, a Schedule II controlled substance.

 

The charges arose from an investigation by the Oklahoma City Police Department, Oklahoma Highway Patrol, McAlester Police Department, Checotah Police Department, McIntosh County Sheriff’s Department, District 18 District Attorney’s Drug Task Force, Bureau of Indian Affairs, United States Marshal Service, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

 

The Honorable Ronald A. White, District Judge in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma, in Muskogee, presided over the hearing. The defendant will remain in the custody of the United States Marshal Service pending transportation to the designated federal facility at which he will serve his nonparoleable sentence.

 

Assistant United States Attorney Shannon Henson represented the United States.

Monday, 18 April 2016 23:20

Tuesday Lunch at the Museum

April 19, 2016 is Tuesday Lunch at the Museum


Central National Bank is grilling the hamburgers and hot dogs.

 

The proceeds will go to the Poteau Police department.

 

Central National Bank and the LeFlore County Historical Society are sponsoring this event.


Come on out and support our local police department.

 

Hamburger or Hot dog, chips, drink and dessert for $6. Hours are 11-1.

 

You can also call 918-647-9330 for takeout orders

 

Some come out the the Hotel Lowrey and support our local police officers – Be sure to use the entrance on Dewey side as the sidewalk on Witte is being replaced.

Poteau, OK - Second Chances Recovery in Poteau is hosting a Unity for The Community Substance Abuse Awareness 5k Walk/Run.


The fun run has been scheduled for Saturday May 7, 2016 at the Donald W Reynolds Center in Poteau.


The 5k is not timed, it is just a fun walk/run for the cause & awareness.


First, Second and Third place prizes will be given for kids 12 and under who raise the most support for the walk/ run.


This is an awesome opportunity for our youth to show their support against substance abuse and get some great exercise and fun at the same time.


Second Chances Recovery wants to encourage our youth to take a stand for sober living and a safer community. So they are giving 3 prizes for the three youth who can raise the most sponsorship support for their walk/run in this event.

 

• 1st Prize - $100
• 2nd Prize - $50
• 3rd Prize - $25 Gift Card


Entry Fee is $25 for Adults and $10 for youth 12 and under. Pre-registration deadline is April 28, 2016.


After pre-registration there is no guarantee participants will receive a T-Shirt.


The Walk/Run begins at the Donald W. Reynolds Center located at 105 Reynolds Ave., Poteau, OK. All runners must check in between 3-3:45 PM. The Walk/Run begins at 4 PM.


The goal of the Unity For The Community 5k Walk/Run is to promote substance abuse awareness and develop a spirit of unity in our fight to stop substance abuse in our communities.

 

There will also be a free concert at 6pm and BBQ by the Recovery Ranch in Wister.


Free drawings, people sharing their stories throughout the concert and information about the substance abuse problem in our county, how people can help and what is being done about it.

 

For more information contact

Terri Wallace at
804-832-3473 Cell
918-647-0612 Store


OKLAHOMA CITY – Legislation was signed into law this week to promote growth in Oklahoma’s third largest industry, tourism. Senate Bill 1206, by Sen. Eddie Fields and Rep. Gary Banz, authorizes the creation of an additional class of improvement districts within municipalities for tourism purposes including providing marketing services for public or private events, if those events can be reasonably expected to increase occupancy at a hotel or motel within the district.

 


Fields explained that Improvement Districts have been a key tool for Oklahoma’s cities and neighborhoods to invest in critical improvements. Instead of a broad tax impacting everyone in a city, Improvement Districts allow those who benefit the most to assess themselves to pay for improvements.

 


“More and more cities across the country are turning to Improvement Districts as a tool to boost their tourism efforts and attract visitors and events to their community,” said Fields, R-Wynona. “Without this type of tool, cities and towns in Oklahoma will increasingly lose out on large events, conferences and tourists, which means lost sales tax for both the state and local communities as well as lost jobs in the tourism, restaurant, hotel and entertainment industries.”

 


There are currently more than 123 cities in Texas, Montana, Kansas, Louisiana, South Dakota, California, Washington, Oregon, Iowa and Pennsylvania that have used Improvement Districts to invest in their tourism industry and strengthen their local economies, raising over $230 million for destination marketing each year.

 


The bill had the support of numerous tourism, hotel and marketing associations including the Metro Tulsa Hotel and Lodging Association as well as community welcome centers from around the state, chambers of commerce and other business entities.

 


The new law will go into effect November 1, 2016.

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