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David Deaton

David Deaton

Digital Editor at Oklahoma Welcome

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By Congressman Markwayne Mullin

In 2016, Turkish militia attempted a coup to overthrow the government and unseat Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. President Erdogan blamed Fethullah Gulen, who fled to the United States two decades ago. The United States refused to extradite Gulen for lack of evidence of his involvement. In the aftermath, President Erdogan vowed to never extradite terrorists to the United States again, including alleged “terrorist” Pastor Andrew Brunson, an American who was arrested by Turkish police in 2016 after the attempted coup for terrorism and espionage.

A 50-year-old pastor from North Carolina, Pastor Brunson has spent the last 23 years evangelizing in Turkey, where he became an essential part of his community by teaching his Christian faith to others. His Christian faith has resulted in Turkish authorities using him as a bargaining chip for the release of Gulen. Pastor Brunson is currently on house arrest and faces up to 35 years in prison if convicted.

Like he is well-known to do, President Trump made a deal. Last week, he proposed that the Israeli government release a Turkish woman and the Turkish government would release Pastor Brunson. The Turkish woman was released from Israel, but now President Erdogan denies any deal with President Trump and refuses to free Pastor Brunson.

President Trump responded strongly by placing sanctions on top Turkish government officials who are linked to Pastor Brunson’s detainment. Using innocent civilians as political bargaining chips is unacceptable. President Trump negotiated with Erdogan in good faith and Erdogan failed to keep his word. Erdogan’s actions cannot go unpunished and sanctions are an appropriate response.

Pastor Brunson has been detained by the Turkish government for nearly two years. As a nation, we must continue to condemn this unjust act. I stand behind President Trump in defending religious liberty and imposing sanctions on those responsible. Pastor Brunson deserves his right to religious freedom and must be released immediately.


Wednesday, 08 August 2018 14:39

We’re All Mad (and Muddy) Here

Press release

Run, walk, crawl or fall down the mud hole to the sixth annual Brave the Mud Run. It is set for Saturday, August 18, 8:00 am, at the Leflore County Fairgrounds.

Brave the Mud Run is the only local mud run that benefits the Women’s Crisis Services and the only fundraiser they host each year. The monies raised stay in the community and used at the shelter to purchase things like Christmas and birthday gifts for women and children, new beds and bedding, appliances and everyday necessities. “WCS provides nearly half a million dollars in yearly contract services to assist local victims,” stated Deanna Chancellor, Executive Director of the Women’s Crisis Services. “The community continues to amaze us year after year by either sponsoring or participating in the event,” Chancellor stated.

As always, the mud run will start and end at the Leflore County fairgrounds. Mudders will encounter some favorite obstacles like the Barn Burner and some new ones as well. Every participant earns a custom finisher’s medal. This event is also professionally chip-timed. Awards will be given for overall finishers, age divisions for individuals and teams and the best Alice in Wonderland-themed costumes or group t-shirt.

The race is set up in waves again this year as it was well received from participants last year, Waves will start at 8:00 am for very competitive racers, 8:15 am is for the somewhat competitive, 8:30 am for sort-of competitive, and 8:45 am start time is for the fun lovin’ racers. Race fees are $45 per person individually or $40 per team member for teams of three or more. Registration forms can be found on the Brave the Mud Run Facebook page, The Coffee Cup, or participants can register online at

Early packet pick-up will be at the Days Inn from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm on Friday, August 17. If you can’t pick-up early, packet pick-up will begin at 7:00 am on Saturday.

Contact Glenda Wise, 918.839.4785 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information. Organizers also encourage you to watch their Facebook page, Brave the Mud Run, for information regarding the events.


Get ready to follow us down the mud hole and get signed up today!

Voters in Leflore County who want to have absentee ballots mailed to them for the August 28 Runoff Primary and Special Elections for Pocola and Poteau Schools and the Town of Talihina should apply now, County Election Board Secretary Sharon Steele said today. Although the County Election Board can accept applications for absentee ballots until 5 p.m. on Wednesday, August 22, Steele urged voters who want to vote by absentee ballot to apply early.

Absentee ballot application forms are available at the County Election Board office located at 103 N. Church St., Poteau. An online version of the form can be filled out and submitted electronically at: A print form can also be downloaded at that address.

Ballots must be in the hands of County Election Board officials by 7 p.m. on Election Day to be counted.

Steele said any registered voter may vote by absentee ballot in any election in which he/she is eligible to vote. However, a voter must be registered and reside at an address within the geographical boundaries of a school district or a municipality to be eligible to vote in school district or municipal elections. It is not necessary to give a reason for voting absentee.

" While anyone can vote absentee without giving a reason, the law still provides several advantages to absentee voters in some categories," Steele said.

By stating one of the following reasons on their applications, absentee voters can activate special conditions that make it easier for them to use absentee ballots.


The reasons are:

• Voters who are physically incapacitated and voters who care for physically incapacitated persons who cannot be left unattended may vote absentee. They may apply only by mail, by fax, by email, online or via an

agent who is at least 16 years of age and who is not employed by or related within the third degree of consanguinity or affinity to any person whose name appears on the ballot.

• Voters who are confined to nursing homes in the county may vote absentee. An Absentee Voting Board actually goes to the nursing home a few days before the election, sets up a small polling place and allows these persons to vote under circumstances similar to those at a regular precinct polling place. They may apply only by mail, by fax, by email, online or via an agent who is at least 16 years of age and who is not employed by or related within the third degree of consanguinity or affinity to any person whose name appears on the ballot.

• Military personnel and residents of the county living overseas and the spouses and dependents of each group are eligible receive absentee ballots. These voters may apply only by mail, fax, or by email. Military personnel should contact the Voting Service Officers in their units for application forms and additional information or visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program website ( for more information and instructions. Residents of Oklahoma living overseas can obtain the same materials from any United States military installation and from United States Embassies and Consulates as well as on the FVAP website.

By Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy CEO Joe Dorman


A historic number of Oklahomans voted in the 2018 Oklahoma primary elections. Regardless of your party affiliation or political beliefs, it was great to see an active and engaged citizenry getting out and voting.


For the majority of elected positions, the primary elections determined who each party’s nominee will be for the November 6 general election. In races where candidates did not break the 50 percent threshold, however, there will now be a run-off election between the two top vote-getters on August 28, just a few weeks away. At that time we will see seven runoffs for the statewide ballot on the Republican ticket, a runoff for the Gubernatorial election for the Libertarian Party, a race for the Democratic ticket with Oklahoma Corporation Commission, state and federal legislative races and many county positions.


The Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy (OICA) hopes that each voter will cast a vote that is informed on each race, and that children’s issues help guide those decisions. We have been working with partner organizations to recognize 2018 as the Year of the Child in Oklahoma, and that means we want elected officials who will consider the needs of our youngest state residents as they make their policy decisions going forward. Oklahoma’s rankings for child wellbeing, unfortunately, range from mediocre to truly dismal. The only way we can improve the state for the better is by creating more opportunities for our children, both through services provided and personal responsibility from parents and adults who are involved in their lives.


OICA staff worked very hard to prepare a legislative scorecard for issues voted upon by state senators and representatives this past session, along with a candidate questionnaire which was answered by a majority of those running for office. This might not sound substantial, but it is very difficult to get candidates to put themselves on record for issues in elections. Those completed surveys are located at under the legislative tab for your perusal.


OICA’s ask of every voter before the August and November elections is simple: please go to, review these candidate surveys, and compare how each candidate says they would work for Oklahoma’s children. Help us hold our elected officials accountable, reward those who are fighting for our children, and question those who have not taken the time to answer a short survey about their plans in office. We have kept the opportunity open for candidates to still send in their answers and we hope some of them who have refused to answer will still submit their ideas.


We also ask our friends in the media to take into consideration these responses prior to making an endorsement of a candidate. We know many factors go into these decisions, but we hope that those interested in Oklahoma’s children and their future will factor these candidate surveys into those endorsements. We also ask that you, the voters of Oklahoma, present candidates with questions about what they will do for the children of our state if elected.


Most importantly, please vote on August 28 and again on November 6!


About OICA
The Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy was established in 1983 by a group of citizens, to create a strong advocacy network that would provide a voice for the needs of children and youth in Oklahoma, particularly those in the state’s care and those growing up amid poverty, violence, abuse and neglect, disparities, or other situations that put their lives and future at risk.

Our mission statement: “Creating awareness, taking action and changing policy to improve the health, safety and well-being of Oklahoma’s children.“



Press Release


Highlights of the Oklahoma Transportation Commission’s Monday, Aug. 6 meeting include the debut of a new Oklahoma Department of Transportation program to assist motorists stranded in work zones, an executive session and action on Secretary of Transportation and ODOT Executive Director Mike Patterson’s salary and a sendoff for Chief Engineer Casey Shell and District Eight Commissioner Peter Regan. Contracts were awarded for projects including I-40 interchange reconstruction in Sequoyah County and SH-11 bridge rehabilitation in Tulsa County.

Patterson and Commissioner of Public Safety Rusty Rhoades unveiled GO-DOT, a set of two new specialized trucks designed to assist motorists who are stranded in highway work zones.


The trucks will be initially deployed in the I-235 work zone between N. 36th St. and I-44 in Oklahoma City and will be later used in other heavily-traveled construction areas.


During his report to the commission, Patterson recognized Casey Shell, ODOT’s longtime chief engineer, who is retiring after more than 30 years of service to the state. Shell’s accomplishments include overseeing emergency repair and now replacement of the US-77/SH-39 bridge between Purcell and Lexington, increasing ODOT’s asset preservation efforts and overseeing execution of the Eight-year Construction Work Plan.


Commissioners also said goodbye to District Eight Commissioner Peter Regan, who is stepping down from the board due to his increased workload. Regan was recognized as being a true public servant and was given a brick from historic Route 66 as a token of appreciation for his nearly ten years of service.

“It’s been an honor and a pleasure to work with the professionals at ODOT since 2009 to improve our state’s transportation infrastructure. I admire the expertise and dedication ODOTers bring to their work.” Regan said. “I’m grateful to Gov. Mary Fallin and the Oklahoma Senate for entrusting me with this position.”

Members of the commission met in an executive session to discuss Patterson’s performance evaluation and salary. Following the executive session, they unanimously voted to increase Patterson’s salary from $156,000 to $185,000 annually.

“Mr. Patterson has been a vital part of ODOT for many years and the commission recognizes his professionalism following in the footsteps of transportation icons like Sec. Neal McCaleb and Sec. Gary Ridley,”

Commission Chairman David Burrage said. “Patterson is credited with a smooth transition as executive director and helping make ODOT a model for other state agencies and DOTs across the country.”

The commission voted to award a more than $42 million contract to reconstruct the I-40 interchange at US-64 near Sallisaw in Sequoyah County. The project will also replace the I-40 bridges over the Kansas City Southern railroad and two creeks near the interchange and will address a total of four structurally deficient bridges. Commissioners also awarded a contract for a nearly $9 million project in Tulsa to rehabilitate the SH-11 bridges over the BNSF railroad and Pine St. and the SH-11 ramp over I-244.

Commissioners voted to award 17 contracts totaling more than $76 million to improve highways, roads and bridges in 14 counties. Contracts were awarded for projects in Cherokee, Cotton, Creek, Haskell, Kingfisher, McCurtain, Muskogee, Oklahoma, Pittsburg, Sequoyah, Tillman, Tulsa, Wagoner and Woods counties. A list of all awarded contracts may be found by visiting, selecting the July 2018 letting and clicking Go and then Award.

The eight-member panel, appointed by the governor to oversee the state’s transportation development, awards project contracts for road and bridge construction every month. Due to the Labor Day holiday, the commission’s next meeting is scheduled for 11 a.m. Monday, Sept. 10.

Contracts, bid information, the commission’s monthly agenda and project details can be viewed at




At their Monday, Aug. 6 meeting, members of the Oklahoma Transportation Commission said goodbye to District Eight Commissioner Peter Regan, who is stepping down from the board. Regan was presented with a brick from historic Route 66 as recognition for his years of service to the state. Pictured, from left, are District One Commissioner John Fidler, District Three Commissioner Dan Overland, Commission Chairman David Burrage, Regan, District Seven Commissioner Brad Burgess and Secretary of Transportation and Oklahoma Department of Transportation Executive Director Mike Patterson.



At its Monday, Aug. 6 meeting, the Oklahoma Transportation Commission awarded a more than $42 million contract for reconstruction of the I-40 interchange at US-64 near Sallisaw, pictured here. This project includes replacement of the I-40 bridges over the Kansas City Southern railroad and two creeks near the interchange.

Wednesday, 08 August 2018 14:14

Norma Jean Cogburn Obituary

Norma Jean Cogburn, 80, of Midwest City, OK passed away Monday, July 30, 2018, at her home.


Norma was born September 5, 1937 in Leflore, OK to Oscar & Nora (John) Stockton.


She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, George Cogburn; grandson, Kyle Haskins; 2 brothers and 3 sisters.

Survivors include her daughter, Sandra Haskins of Midwest City; sister, Maxine Kendall of Monroe, OK; granddaughter, Mandy Haskins and grandson, Seth Haskins; other relatives, loved ones and friends.

Services will be at 11 am, Saturday, August 11, 2018 at LeFlore Cemetery Pavilion, LeFlore OK with Jim Cook officiating.


You may leave an online message at


The family has chosen to entrust the care of the services to Evans & Miller Funeral Home, POTEAU, OK

Wednesday, 08 August 2018 14:10

August 4th Southeast Area Lake Report

A service of the Oklahoma Wildlife Department 


Southeast Area lake Report

Arbuckle: August 4. Elevation 1/2 ft. below normal, water 81-83. Largemouth bass good on topwater lures early morning and on crankbaits and soft plastic baits. Smallmouth bass good on topwater lures early morning, on spinnerbaits in the wind and on soft plastic baits. Crappie slow on yellow/white slabs slayer baits at 18 ft. off docks and out on the lake. White bass good on grubs up creeks and on roadrunners along flats. Channel catfish good on punch bait, dead minnows and stinkbait. Report submitted by Jack Melton.

Blue River: August 6. Elevation normal, water 84 and clear. Largemouth, spotted and smallmouth bass good on crankbaits, spinnerbaits and topwater lures around brush structure, rocks and sandbars; bass topwater action is best at dawn and dusk. Channel catfish excellent on chicken liver, punch bait, stinkbait and worms around brush structure and deeper pools on the edge of currents. Bluegill, green and redear sunfish good on in-line spinnerbaits, plastic baits and small lures along sandbar and shallows. Approximately 2,000 channel catfish were stocked on July 31. Report submitted by Matt Gamble, biologist at the Blue River Public Fishing and Hunting Area.

Broken Bow: August 3. Elevation below normal, water 88. Largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass good on Alabama rigs and plastic baits around brush structure, creek channels, points and standing timber. Crappie good on minnows and jigs around brush structure and standing timber. Report submitted by Dru Polk, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

Eufaula: August 2. Elevation normal, water murky but slowly clearing. Blue catfish excellent on cut bait, live bait, live shad, shad and worms below the dam, along the dam and river mouth. Crappie fair on minnows and jigs around bridges. Largemouth and spotted bass good on grasshoppers, small lures and spinnerbaits in coves, main lake and weed beds. Report submitted by Cannon Harrison, game warden stationed in McIntosh County.

Hugo: August 3. Elevation below normal, water 87 and murky. Blue, channel and flathead catfish slow on cut bait, dough bait, live bait and shad below the dam, along channels, main lake and river channel. Crappie slow on minnows and jigs below the dam, around brush structure, main lake and river channel. Report submitted by Andrew Potter, game warden stationed in Choctaw County.

Konawa: August 2. Elevation normal, water 96 and clear. Largemouth bass good on buzz baits, crankbaits, jigs, plastic baits and topwater lures in the main lake, around points, river channel and weed beds. Striped bass hybrids and white bass fair on Alabama rigs, crankbaits and live shad in coves, main lake and river channel. Channel catfish fair on chicken liver, cut bait and stinkbait in coves, along creek channels, inlet and riprap. Report submitted by Garret Harley, game warden stationed in Seminole County.

Lower Mountain Fork: August 3. Elevation normal, water clear. Trout fair on caddis flies, PowerBait and small lures along creek channels and rocks. Report submitted by Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

McGee Creek: August 4. Elevation normal, water 86. Crappie, white bass and spotted bass good on minnows around brush structure, river channel and standing timber. Channel and flathead catfish fair on chicken liver, goldfish and sunfish along creek channels and river channel. Report submitted by Jay Harvey, game warden stationed in Atoka County.

Pine Creek: August 3. Elevation below normal, water clear. Largemouth bass good on topwater lures along shallows. Crappie fair on minnows and jigs around brush structure. Channel catfish fair on cut bait and punch bait in the main lake. Report submitted by Mark Hannah, game warden stationed in McCurtain County.

Robert S. Kerr: August 3. Elevation normal, water murky. Largemouth and spotted bass fair on flukes, lipless baits, plastic baits and spinnerbaits in coves and creek channels. Blue, channel and flathead catfish fair on cut bait, live bait, live shad, stinkbait and sunfish along flats, main lake, river channel and river mouth. Report submitted by Allen Couch, game warden stationed in Haskell County.

Sardis: August 2. Elevation below normal, water 90. Largemouth and spotted bass fair on buzz baits, crankbaits, hair jigs, jerk baits, plastic baits, spinnerbaits, topwater lures and tube jigs around brush structure, channels, creek channels, points, rocks, shorelines, standing timber and weed beds. Blue, channel and flathead catfish fair on cut bait, shad and sunfish along flats, main lake and shorelines. Crappie fair on hair jigs, minnows and tube jigs around brush structure, creek channels and standing timber. Report submitted by Dane Polk, game warden stationed in Pushmataha County.

Texoma: August 6. Elevation below normal, water 88 and clear. Striped bass good on live shad and topwater lures along discharge, main lake and points. Crappie fair on hair jigs and tube jigs around brush structure and docks. Blue catfish good on cut bait and live shad below the dam, along channels and main lake. Report submitted by Trey Hale, game warden stationed in Bryan County.

Wister: August 3. Elevation normal, water cloudy. Largemouth bass fair on bill baits, buzz baits, crankbaits, plastic baits and spinnerbaits around brush structure, channels and points. Blue catfish fair on chicken liver, cut bait, shad and stinkbait along channels and main lake. Crappie fair on minnows and jigs around brush structure, channels and standing timber. Report submitted by Thomas Gillham, game warden stationed in LeFlore County.

Wednesday, 08 August 2018 11:49

CNB helps with sponsorship for Mud Run



Poteau, OKLAHOMA - Central National Bank has been a long-time supporter of the Women’s Crisis Services Annual Brave the Mud Run.

the 6th annual Brave the Mud Run is scheduled for Saturday, August 18, 8:00 am, at the LeFlore County Fairgrounds.


This annual event is the only fundraiser done by the Women’s Crisis Services and the proceeds help to provide the needs for the many women and children it serves.

If you would like to become a sponsor, please contact Deanna Chancellor at (918) 647-2810.

Press release

OKLAHOMA CITY – A Lawton Correctional Facility inmate was beaten and stabbed during an assault Monday night.

Inmate George Haga, 37, was assaulted around 9:40 p.m. by inmates on a facility pod.

An ambulance took Haga to Comanche County Memorial Hospital, where he was still hospitalized on Tuesday.

The Oklahoma Department of Corrections is investigating what led to the assault.


Haga is serving time on a 15-year sentence out of Oklahoma County for firearm possession, acquiring proceeds from drug activity, and possession with intent to distribute.

Tuesday, 07 August 2018 10:16

Robert S Kerr artifacts on display at LCHS

The LeFlore County Historical Society is pleased to announce that on Thursday, August 16, 2018 at 5:30 PM, Jim Horne with the Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture will give a presentation followed by the video “Dream no little Dream” on the legacy of Senator Robert S. Kerr, who contributed to so much to the State of Oklahoma and southeastern Oklahoma.


The presentation is at the LeFlore County Museum at Hotel Lowrey, 303 Dewey, (entrance on Witte street side) Poteau.


Following the video, people will be able to tour the exhibit “Robert S. Kerr – Land, Wood and Water”, currently in the two revolving exhibit rooms on the first floor of the museum


Robert S. Kerr was born September 11, 1896 in a log cabin in Pontotoc County, Indian Territory.


He learned early on the importance of natural resources from his father, a farmer, who told him “To raise a family, you have to have three things – land, wood and water. Kerr used this as a slogan for his senatorial race.

(Oklahoma Historical Society.)


He later wrote a book entitled “Land, Wood & Water. The museum has copies of the book for $15.00.


The exhibit will be on display through September 22.


The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday 11am to 3pm. 

kerr photo eighteen 002



Call 918-647-9330 for more information.

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