Digital Editor at Oklahoma Welcome
The following couples received their marriage licenses in LeFlore County during the week of May 3-7, 2021:
James Lee Griffin, III and Michele Lena Ward
John David Byler and Wynelle Joy Petre
Joshua Glynn Napier and Denishe Renae Bauer
Dillon Michael Lloyd and Cassidy Reighanne Shelby
Trey D. Weaver and Chelsie Raeann Hall
THE LEFLORE COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY IS PLEASED TO ANNOUNCE THEIR TUESDAY LUNCH AT THE MUSEUM
BBQ CHICKEN SANDWICH, CHIPS, DRINK AND DESSERT FOR ONLY $6.00
The Historical Society is located at 303 Dewey Avenue in Poteau
The Museum has over 20 rooms of artifacts, some items include Spiro Mound Artifacts, Runestones, Early pioneer artifacts, medical room, coal room, railroad room and many others.
A non Profit organization, the Historical Society relies on support of the community to stay in operation.
Come out Tuesday and support the museum and enjoy a great lunch.
Take out available by calling 918.647.9330
Support Live Music LeFlore Co, Area By Terry Joe Wiles
Featured musician this week - J. B. Lloyd
J.B. and I got together at a guitar pull out at Rick Ward’s house a couple months ago . It had been quite a spell since I had seen him or heard him . He always handled a country song with the respect that it deserved and he has a smooth delivery with a distinctive sound ! He was a bandleader for several years with Country Connection during the 80’s . Those were the golden years in Country , the Urban Cowboy years ! Lots of places to play and lots of bands . And Country Connection - Larry Hight/bass , Mike Medlock/guitar and Jackie Linville/drums played 3 nights a week and practiced at least once plus kept families fed with day jobs so they earned a top spot around LeFlore Co. !
So when J.B. came to me for ideas about putting together a reunion of sorts , I agreed to help all I could . It seemed to be just what we needed at the time ! Live music had taken such a hit during the lockdown year , it needed something to get folks excited about again !
Earl Hearon and the Sound of Country had a great start with the Merle Haggard Tribute so the Pocket Park is perfect for this event . Mary Parham and crew keep the venue Family Friendly , Billy Hoffman donated the new stage and awning , it is perfect for an afternoon of music . So make plans for May 15th , “Musicians Reunion” will start bout 2 pm and has 5 bands scheduled for the day . Country to Gospel to Bluegrass !
I had a few minutes to visit with J.B and found out that his Grandma , Mary Josephine Lloyd , showed him a lil’ on guitar and he was hooked . His family on his Dad side along with two Uncles and a Brother all played music and his Grandpa Van Hooser on his Mom’s side was a fiddler !
The family moved up from Clayton when J/B. was 14 and he played with the “Music Masters” in 9th grade with Eddie and Jeanie George McAlester , James Jack and Cuzzin’ Ricky LLoyd .
Payin’ his dues and playing at just about any opportunity found J.B. playing with Max and Frankie Harris on the banks of Holsom Creek at the GinHole Bar . Been there-done that ! Using that experience , he helped form “Country Connection” with Larry Hight , Mike Medlock and Jackie Linville . Don May sang and played with that band for a while . Me and Cuzzin’ Dave Mize got to play with them for a couple of weeks down in Hugo at the Rendezvous Club while Earl and Robert Hvamstad went to Colorado to elk hunt . It was a great crowd of dancers and the band was well received . We made some good two-stepping music for that Red River Crowd . Country Connection played from 82 til 85 .
J.B. sang for a few more years and then good ole common sense led him to more work/less playing that put him back on the road building roads to pay the bills . I understand he is a fair dozer hand . But that decision was the difference between J.B. and a lotta musicians that his family came first . Then God seemed to step up and moved J.B. to turn his life around and surrender . His passion about his faith is contagious and sincere . He said that he had to work on becoming humble , to try his best to do God’s will and not his own .
He is sure a good influence on me !
Just in the last year or so , J.B. started working on his songs and getting the itch to play again . He got together with Rick Ward , Max Harris , Randy Fennell at home just to play again . I got to play a couple of nights and enjoyed the music . That was enough for J.B. to start planning this event . His voice is strong and it is a treat to hear him sing again .
Ain’t Ya Glad I am Finally getting to write about “Live Music Events” (instead of just about me) !
There’s another Pocket Park Event coming up on May 15th !
J.B. Lloyd dreamed it up so he gets to be the Host , and a picker/singer/roadie/in charge of setting up the white folding chairs ! If I was you , I would bring a lawn chair ! But more about the event next week in OKNEWS and on fb !
One set will be played by some long time family friends , Bill and Linda Lancaster . If ya don’t know them from Turkey Track , ya might know them from the Music/Hydraulic Store ! Kinda an unusual combo but it happened that one supported the other . You figure out which . They had a well stocked music store/recording studio on Broadway from 98 until 2008 .
I ask how they came to live in the area and got a perfect answer . While escaping from the Ft. Worth are on a Labor Day Weekend thru LeFlore Co. , they ran into Bill Barber in the mts. and ended buying some land . Bill said that the Good Lord just led them here ! And I say , Thank ya Lord !
Bill plays bass , banjo , Cajun fiddle and mandolin . He was forced to learn by Brother Vern ! He started playing on weekends round Dallas at VFW’s after his Navy years . “Thanks for your Service” ! Then worked with the Country Edition band at Country Club’s . Better money there !
I understand that Bill met Linda on the dance floor ! Good thing he can play music cause I think that Linda finally learned to play Upright (Doghouse) Bass so they had an interest in common . Linda is solid on her instrument . She let me try it one time at a family picking at Turkey Track and after bout 4 songs I gave it back . I now have much more respect for her talent ! Bil can play Doghouse bass but he said it hurts his fingers too ! They have played in front of thousands at Bluegrass festivals all over the country . But they both confessed
to having a lil stagefright issue ! Ya sure couldn’t tell !
And there were lots of Recording studio stories , too many to tell now , but Bill used top-notched musicians and recorded two Gospel CD’s for J.B. ! He recorded a cut of the Turkey Track Theme Song that my Cuzzin’ Larry Watson played mandolin . Two cd’s for Bill Grant ! Two for Louisiana Grass !! But had the most fun with a Spanish speaking band from this area . Music has no National language , It IS the Universal language ! So the session produced an exceptional cd and a lotta fun was had by all . Smilin’ Bob Hayes and Joe Weaver gave guitar lessons
there , too .
Bill and Linda will be joined by singer/guitar player , Hugh Adams , a long time friend from down around Sardis Lake area . Hugh sings country songs(Ft. Worth style) with a Cowboy spirit and brings their stories to life ! Bill said he would sing 3 originals , two country songs about this area and a gospel tune . It will be a great set and it is scheduled for 5 pm.
Giving back what was so freely given - The Gift
Ya know , as I was gathering info for this week’s Live Music , I realized that I had almost forgotten or neglected a big part of music in the area . The singers and musicians that carried music to those sick and shut-in folks ! It is truly using the God given gift to carry a lil’ joy to those folks that don’t have a lotta joy in their day ! I have been around Spiro Nursing Home lately and they have been very creative in keeping their residents active and involved . Their kindness and compassion was greatly appreciated . But , to show my appreciation , I did promise
when they opened back up to bring a couple hours of the joy of live music back like we used to do ! This lockdown has been awful hard on folks that were already isolated . And my hats off to all the singers and musicians who take time to provide a lil sunshine
in a few people’s lives . And give it freely !
Where that got started , you might ask ! Well , I got to visit with Randy Humphrey to get a lil info for this coming Musician’s ReUnion . The Walker Mt. Boys focus on this ministry of music , any chance that they get . Playing at the Heavner and Poteau Assisted Living homes and as far as the Tulsa Cancer Center . A family member of Randy’s was getting help there and the group would often play and sing there . Even during lockdown when the group wasn’t allowed , Randy would take a guitar and go room to room to sing for other patients . I realized that
lately I hadn’t been mentioning the musicians that do these acts of kindness , never seeking praise , only doing the work of the Lord ! I will put more effort into giving more credit where it is due !
So I kept squeezing til I got so info bout the Walker Mt. Boys from him ! Now playing as a trio with Randy on Flattop guitar and singing , Johnny Janway/ guitar/fiddle/vocals and Andy Anderson on Doghouse bass ! Johnny and Randy have been together for years , long as he could remember . And Andy rejoined the group when he met the requirement of hair color ! His hair finally turned to match the others . Now I am assuming that means gray !
Anyway , they don’t write out a setlist , just play and sing what is on their hearts . They do Country , Bluegrass and Gospel . Randy said there would be a couple of original gospel tunes ! They recently played outside for the residents at the Heavner Nursing Home while the residents listened from the back porch area . They play every 3rd Sunday for Cowboy Church in Talihina . And will be glad when things open back . These guys are the real deal and I can’t wait to hear them this coming Sat. at the Musicians Reunion . Their set starts about 4 pm . !
The Musicians ReUnion will be at the Pocket Park, this Sat. the 15th ! It starts at 2 pm sharp . Five bands will provide the entertainment - Rearvue Mirror - Connie Abbott and Country Pride - Walker Mt. Boys - Bill and Linda Lancaster with Hugh Adams and J.B. Lloyd and Company ! It has become a nice mixof music from Country to Bluegrass to Americana to Gospel ! All five bands plan on Gospel songs in their set list .
This is a FREE event . It’s a bring-a-lawnchair kinda event . Concessions will be provided by Mary Parham and the HDP crew . There will be a food truck for grub . The weather looks to be a pleasant and rainfree Spring day . It will be a great afternoon of music . I hope to see ya there .
And another chance to hear live music will be at the Wright Family Farm this Sat . the 15th in Shady Point . The Wrights host an evening of Gospel music , this time the featured guest are the Alversons . This is also a free , no admission event ! It is a Family-Friendly event with Lawn Chairs in the front yard , plenty of room for the kids to play kinda thing !
Robert , Rochelle and Kyler invite everyone to share this time with them . It starts this Sat. at 6:30 !
Another good picking is at the DAV just North of Poteau ! John Sanders jost an Open Mic Nite with pickers and singer joining in for Country and Gospel music ! It is every Friday nite and starts at 6:00 .
Grannie’s Nightmare plays Classic R&R out on Hwy 71 S at Shelia’s What’ya Do Y’all Bar and Grill , this Sat. the 15th ! Rock and Roll is here to stay and this power trio can really bring it !
Rearvue Mirror will be at the MuldrowVFW on Sat the 15th ! Great place to listen and dance to one of my favorite groups !
It is great that LIve Music is happening at more events
Get out and support them .
Musicians need love too !
Despite the challenges they faced to complete their education during a global pandemic, 220 Eastern Oklahoma State College students have earned their associate degree or certificate this year.
Eastern’s 2021 graduates listed by county include:
Hope AnnaLynn Angel, Atoka - (A.A.) General Studies
Brenton J. Beck, Atoka - (A.A.) General Studies
Kylie B. Bowen, Atoka - (A.A.) General Studies
Cole E. Broughton, Atoka - (A.S.) Health, Physical Education & Recreation
Taylor J. Chambers, Atoka - (A.S.) Agriculture Economics
Ryan McKenzie Walker, Atoka - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Tracy L. Whatley, Atoka - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Hadleigh L. Workman, Caney - (A.S.) Agriculture Education
Christian H. McGowan, Bokchito - (A.S.) Criminal Justice
Viktoria K. Buck, Colbert - (A.S.) Life Science
Cade G. Buchanan, Durant - (A.A.) General Studies
Baylee Rae Nix, Carnegie - (A.S.) Agriculture Economics
Tanner Wayne Stevens, Yukon - (A.S.) Animal Science
Avery D. Hoggard, Ratliff City - (A.S.) Agronomy
Kallie L. Clifton, Soper - (A.S.) Agriculture Economics
Curren ReAnn Bailey, Moore - (A.S.) Agriculture Education
Yanene I. Meza, Moore - (A.A.) Pre-Elementary Education
Madelyn P. Compton, Norman - (A.S.) Life Science
Jacklyn N. Davis, Coalgate - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Austin J. Lambert, Coalgate - (A.A.) General Studies
Mikayla Babcock, Mannford - (A.A.) General Studies
Benton Denny, Jay - (A.S.) Animal Science
Colten Dale, Watts - (A.S.) Animal Science
Seth D. Gray, Drummond - (A.S.) Life Science
Wyatt M. Gray, Drummond - (A.A.) General Studies
Kayla S. Beil, Chickasha - (A.A.) General Studies
Ciara D. Clark, Stigler - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
Emery L. Martin, Stigler - (A.S.) Animal Science
Susan M. Robison, Stigler - (A.A.S.) Nursing
George A. Stilwell, Stigler - (A.S.) Criminal Justice COP
Nathan Wingo, Stigler - (A.S.) Criminal Justice COP
Angelica Ann Beck, Holdenville - (A.A.S.) Meat Processing & Food Safety, (A.S.) Agriculture Communication and (A.S.) Food Science
Elizabeth L. Brewer, Stuart - (A.S.) Life Science
Ashley Kay Brown, Stuart - (A.S.) Life Science
Stormie M. Shores, Stuart - (A.S.) Life Science
Brayden C. Putman, Wetumka - (A.A.) General Studies
Keegan Riley Hertensen, Cashion - (A.S.) Agriculture Education, (A.S.) Agriculture Communication and (A.S.) Animal Science
Doralynn D. Cox, Panola - (A.A.) General Studies
Madison Jade Clark, Red Oak - (A.A.) General Studies
Kelsey Deon Hunter, Red Oak - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Kylie M. Jolley, Red Oak - (A.A.) Pre-Elementary Education
Coby J. Ober, Red Oak - (A.A.) Enterprise Development-General Studies
Chloe Calista Treannie, Tuskahoma - (A.A.) General Studies
Morgan L. Arledge, Wilburton - (A.A.) Mass Communication
Jordan A. Bailey, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies
Rachael Belisle, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies
Helen M. Bevilacqua, Wilburton - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
Jewellena Boyett, Wilburton - (A.S.) Horticulture
Crystal A. Caldwell, Wilburton - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
Kelsey Rae Chance, Wilburton - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Joslyn R. Crocker, Wilburton - (A.A.) Pre-Elementary Education
Skyler K. Curtis, Wilburton - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Michele Le' Evans, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies
Vilma B. Higginbotham, Wilburton - (A.A.) Psychology/Sociology
Ellen M. Jeffrey, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies
Courtney Jones, Wilburton - (A.S.) Horticulture
Michelle Jones, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies
Sandra J'Lynn Karstens, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies
Jaycee J. Kitchell, Wilburton - (A.S.) Life Science
Cynthia M. Milligan, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies
Jennifer S. Montana, Wilburton - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Michael Thomas Moore, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies and (A.S.) Business Administration
Montanna R. Patzack, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies and (A.S.) Life Science
Hannah Posey, Wilburton - (A.A.) Psychology/Sociology
Ethan Ray Robertson, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies
Alejandro Rosales Camacho, Wilburton - (A.A.) Psychology/Sociology
Victor H. Schulze, Wilburton - (A.A.S.) Ranch Management-Stocker Operations
Allison Nicole Sellers, Wilburton - (A.A.) Psychology/Sociology
Kylee R. Taylor, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies
Mikayla Vandaveer, Wilburton - (A.A.) General Studies
Ward Scott Vinson, Wilburton - (A.S.) Life Science
Meagan E. Pilkington, Heavener - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Carson J. Cheek, Howe - (A.A.) General Studies
Haley E. Stone, Muldrow - (A.A.S.) Meat Processing & Food Safety
Cassidy J. Ward, Panama - (A.S.) Life Science
Graclyn B. Young, Poteau - (A.A.) General Studies
Ciara S. Johnson, Shady Point - (A.S.) Animal Science and (A.S.) Pre-Veterinary Medicine
Jaydin A. Harper, Talihina - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Amanda L. Johnson, Talihina - (A.A.) General Studies
Keith G. Lickly, Talihina - (A.S.) Business Administration
Logan Christopher Cole Rose, Talihina - (A.S.) Health, Physical Education & Recreation
Madison Riley Wall, Talihina - (A.S.) Life Science
Kristen Brown, Wister - (A.S.) Food Science
Tiffani J. Henry, Kingston - (A.S.) Life Science
Ryan L. Stockton, Purcell - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
Alissa L. Kindred, Bethel - (A.S.) Agriculture Economics
Brian C. Buchanan, Broken Bow - (A.A.) General Studies
Jacey D. Buchanan, Broken Bow - (A.A.) Child Development
Haleigh M. Converse, Broken Bow - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Mikayla A. Dennis, Broken Bow - (A.A.) Psychology/Sociology
Sarah N. Jackson, Broken Bow - (A.A.) Pre-Elementary Education
Marissa A. Johnson, Broken Bow - (A.S.) Forestry
Dillon W. Jordan, Broken Bow - (A.S.) Wildlife Ecology
Krystin Riley Klein, Broken Bow - (A.A.) Psychology/Sociology
JonAnne Walters, Broken Bow - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Bergandy N. Holt, Haworth - (A.A.) Psychology/Sociology
Rita Jordan Allen, Idabel - (A.A.) General Studies
Princes'Sai Emma Jewel Johns, Idabel - (A.A.) General Studies
Justin L. Lecrone, Idabel - (A.S.) Life Science
Tayeh C. Shoals, Idabel - (A.A.) General Studies
Stephanie R. Talley, Idabel - (A.A.S.) Nursing
James Roy Cash, Valliant - (A.A.) Psychology/Sociology
Drake E. Erickson, Checotah - (A.S.) Business Administration
Brandye Anne Duke, Eufaula - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Baylee A. Highfill, Muskogee - (A.A.) General Studies
Morgen M. Bellar, Lenapah - (A.A.) General Studies
Kason G. Cathey, Jones - (A.S.) Animal Science and (A.S.) Food Science
Nicholas D. Sizemore, Afton - (A.S.) Life Science
Gabriel T. Gibson, Blocker - (A.S.) Life Science
Pamela J. Latham, Canadian - (A.S.) Horticulture
Te'a L. Vail, Canadian - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
Regina Ann Byrd, Haileyville - (A.S.) Business Administration
Tanner R. Arnold, Hartshorne - (A.A.) General Studies
Taylor Daniels, Hartshorne - (A.A.) General Studies
David A. Ledbetter, Hartshorne - (A.A.) General Studies
Eduardo D. Walker, Hartshorne - (A.S.) Business Administration
Jaylin E. McBride, Indianola - (A.A.) General Studies
Jill C. Weaver, Kiowa - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Zachary Butler, Krebs - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
Chandler Peckio, Krebs - (A.A.) General Studies
Alyssa M. Pemberton, Krebs - (A.S.) Life Science
Ravyn Allphin, McAlester - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
Leah Back, McAlester - (A.A.) Psychology/Sociology
Cami B. Barlow, McAlester - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
Summer Nicole Bicknell, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Tabitha A. Bradford, McAlester - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
Madelyn G. Burks, McAlester - (A.A.) Pre-Elementary Education
Madeline R. Camp, McAlester - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Jordyn Cook, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Thomas T. Davis, McAlester - (A.S.) Business Administration
Tien Q. Do, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Jake M. Edwards, McAlester - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Jax A. Franklin, McAlester - (A.S.) Health, Physical Education & Recreation
Jesus A. Gaytan, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Jessica Graham, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Paige S. Grimes, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Lauren E. Harbin, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Sienna R. Hooser, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Ashley L. Howard, McAlester - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Thomas Irish, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Easten C. James, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Alton L. Jones II, McAlester - (A.S.) Life Science
Misty D. Jones, McAlester - (A.S.) Criminal Justice
Jacob T. Lane, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Kristen D. Lane, McAlester - (A.A.) English
Ali R. Leding, McAlester - (A.A.) Mass Communication
Shane E. Leggett, McAlester - (A.S.) Life Science
Nichole D. Lewis, McAlester - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Emerald Lynn, McAlester - (A.A.) History/Political Science
Emily Medrano, McAlester - (A.A.) Enterprise Development-General Studies
Holly M. R. Parker, McAlester - (A.A.) Enterprise Development-General Studies
Jakeb Parker, McAlester - (A.S.) Agriculture Education
Jodie Pool, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Daniel S. Quinton, McAlester - (A.S.) Criminal Justice
Jacob R. Rattan, McAlester - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Angelo Robert Rivers II, McAlester - (A.S.) Criminal Justice COP
Aubrey D. Russell, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Divina Rose Q. Santos, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Bailey M. Sissom, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Kara B. Smith, McAlester - (A.A.) Enterprise Development-General Studies
Makayla J. Smith, McAlester - (A.A.) Pre-Elementary Education
Phoebe A. Smith, McAlester - (A.S.) Business Administration
Robert W. Spaulding, McAlester - (A.S.) Business Administration
Shea I. Stowers, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Hallie A. Sutterfield, McAlester - (A.S.) Life Science
Jenna B. Swboni, McAlester - (A.A.) Pre-Elementary Education
Ashlee N. Tidwell, McAlester - Child Development Certificate
Ashley Todd, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Tan Truong, McAlester - (A.S.) Physical Science, (A.S.) Mathematics and Computer Coding Certificate
Shanna Twyman, McAlester - Child Development Certificate
Nicholas R. Verner, McAlester - (A.S.) Business Administration
Megan Nicole Vieux, McAlester - (A.A.S.) Nursing and (A.A.) General Studies
Nikki M. Walling, McAlester - (A.A.) Child Development
Landon Waters, McAlester - (A.S.) Criminal Justice
Hunter L. Whitaker, McAlester - (A.A.) General Studies
Sandra M. Timmons, Pittsburg - (A.A.) Child Development
Crystal L. Hollingsworth, Quinton - (A.A.) General Studies
Kaylee D. Orr, Quinton - (A.A.) General Studies
Alyssa Ashlee Osborn, Savanna - (A.A.) General Studies
Nolan A. Feazle, Ada - (A.S.) Agriculture Economics
Jacob T. Savage, Ada - (A.A.) General Studies
Alexis Hise, Stonewall - (A.S.) Agriculture Education
Kyler C. Gee, Antlers - (A.A.S.) Ranch Management-Stocker Operations
Stacy L. McCarty, Antlers - (A.S.) Business Administration
Kammye A. Thain, Antlers - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
Colten Bell, Clayton - (A.S.) Forestry
Christian L. Scarberry, Clayton - (A.A.) Music
Amanda R. White, Clayton - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
Hannah M. Brown, Rattan - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Mattie K. Henry, Tuskahoma - (A.A.S.) Nursing
David E. Sandlin, Owasso - (A.S.) Business Administration
Tee Jay Trotter, Vian - (A.S.) Agriculture Education
Cole M. Disney, Broken Arrow - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Jonathan W. Moore, Broken Arrow - (A.A.) Mass Communication
John D. Miller, Sand Springs - (A.A.) General Studies
Karson A. Coffee, Bentonville - (A.A.) General Studies
Rebekah Rose O'Neal, Elkins - (A.S.) Agriculture Economics and (A.S.) Animal Science
Elisabeth P. Abeyta, Fort Smith - (A.A.) General Studies
Jeremy Chapman, Fort Smith - (A.A.S.) Respiratory Therapy
David W. McCroskey IV, Springdale - (A.A.) General Studies
Keely D. Harrelson, Springdale - (A.S.) Agriculture Education and (A.S.) Animal Science
Bryce David Matthews, Parker - (A.A.) General Studies
Jacob Johnson, Ruth - (A.S.) Animal Science
Holly M. R. Sinning, Mannsfield - (A.S.) Pre-Veterinary Medicine
Nicholas J. Wimmers, Oregonia - (A.S.) Computer Information Systems-Forensics
Jeb G. Jenkins, Amarillo - (A.A.) General Studies
Krystina S. Cabrera, Bells - (A.A.) General Studies
Rolando Riza Jr, Eagle Pass - (A.A.) General Studies
Jordan Hamilton, Fate - (A.A.) General Studies
Alauna Moore, Fort Worth - (A.A.) General Studies
TiJanae’ Simmons, Houston – (A.S.) Business Administration
Lauren J. Freeman, Joshua - (A.A.) General Studies
Deja L. Williams, Manvel - (A.S.) Life Science
Jaylann Myles, Mesquite - (A.S.) Life Science
Triphornia Rutendo Mubaiwa, Pflugerville - (A.A.S.) Nursing
Julian Corinne Cowley, The Colony - (A.A.) General Studies
Andrew A. Walling, Castle Rock - (A.S.) Business Administration
Lucas Teixeira, Bela Vista, Brazil - (A.S.) Business Administration
Dawson Walters, Toronto, Ontario, Canada - (A.A.) General Studies
Florian Ouaddour Mehana, Fresnes, France - (A.S.) Business Administration
Joey Billy, 83, of Howe, OK passed away Tuesday, May 11, 2021 in Arkoma, OK.
Joey was born August 8, 1937 in Poteau, OK to Eddie & Pearl (Cook) Teague. She loved fishing and boat riding. She enjoyed being with her kids and grandkids. She enjoyed music and singing; loved her western shows and knew it was bedtime when the Golden Girls came on. She was preceded in death by her siblings, Barbara Purma, Evelyn Clark, Opal Watson, Lloyd Teague, Floyd Teague and Rubin Teague.
Survivors include her children, Eva & Josh Sims, Avo & Adam Wilson, Joey Riley, Lea-Ann Wilde, and Brenda Bolton, Warren Billy & Bobby Shelton; sisters, Jaunita Kennedy & Patrick Kennedy; grandchildren, Kaylub, Derrick, Jeremy & Skyla Sims; Haley, Adam, James, Devin and Emma Wilson; Sean and Taylor Wilde, Tara Ross, Cody, Kyle and Destiny Riley; Brennan and Bryce Trent, Brandy Davis, Amber & Lisa Billy; great grandchildren, Jonathan Stokes, Ryker & Violet Wilson, Isiah Stokes, Lilly Lumpkin, Brynleigh, Abbigail and Paige Wilde, Jaydon Ross; other relatives, loved ones and friends.
Services will be 2 pm, Friday, May 14, 2021 at Heavener First Baptist Church with Brock Hardin officiating. Interment will be at Glendale/Mt View Cemetery. The family will be at the funeral home on Thursday evening from 6-8 pm to visit with relatives & friends.
You may leave an online message at evansandmillerfuneralhomes.com
The family has chosen to entrust the care of the services to Evans & Miller Funeral Home, POTEAU,
Graveside funeral services for John Restine, Sr. will be 3:00 pm on Friday, May 14, 2021 at the Old Bokoshe Cemetery in Bokoshe, Oklahoma with Mr. Bill Self officiating.
Viewing will be Thursday 9:00am 7:00pm with the family visiting with friends on Thursday from 5:00-7:00pm at the Mallory- Martin Funeral Home Chapel in Spiro, Oklahoma.
John Walter Restine Sr., was born January 2, 1956 Carlsbad, New Mexico to Peter W. “Pete” and Jackie (Rogers) Restine and passed away on May 11, 2021 in Fort Smith, Arkansas at the age of 65.
He is survived by his wife of 39 years, Sherry (Petersen) Restine, daughter, Amy Lomon and husband Kevin; son, John Restine, Jr. and wife Allison; grandchildren, Olivia Gibford, Nash Goodson, Jett Goodson, Ava Blaylock, Evelyn Restine, Wade Restine and one great grandchild on the way; sister Ann Self and husband Bill; brothers, Kelly Restine and Charlie Restine and wife Wendy; numerous nieces, nephews, other family, and all his friends at Tyson Foods. John was preceded in death by his parents, Pete and Jackie Restine; his son, DJ Blaylock; his sisters, Maddie Restine and Mary Ellen Restine, and his brother, Bill Restine.
John was the General Production Manager at Tyson Foods in Van Buren, Arkansas where he worked for 38 years. He loved hunting, fishing, and all his family but most of all he loved his children and grandchildren and was proud of them and their accomplishments. John will be missed by all that knew him.
Pallbearers will be Eric Restine, Mike Restine, Daniel Restine, Greg Restine, Pete Restine, and Dawson Restine.
RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. – On the eve of the 2021 Great American Conference Baseball Championships, the league announced its All-GAC teams and awarded its top individual honors. Southwestern Oklahoma State’s Alex Bedard won Player of the Year; Harding’ Ryder Yakel and Michael Chrisman earned Pitcher of the Year and Newcomer of the Year, respectively; Southeastern Oklahoma State’s Seth Morrow garnered Freshman of the Year and Northwestern Oklahoma State’s Ryan Bowen captured Coach of the Year.
Bedard became the first Bulldog named Player of the Year. He hit .398 with a .476 on-base percentage. He led the GAC and ranked in the top 10 in the nation with 57 runs scored and 30 stolen bases. Morrow finished the regular season tied for the league’s lead with 51 RBI. He ranked in the top seven in five major offensive categories.
One season after receiving Newcomer of the Year, Yakel claimed the Bisons’ first GAC Pitcher of the Year. He led the conference with a 2.70 ERA, a .185 opponent’s batting average and a 0.88 WHIP. In 14 appearances, he picked up six wins and six saves. He struck out 52 in 50.0 innings pitched. Chrisman ended the regular season as one of seven players in the GAC with at least a .400 batting average. His 68 hits led the GAC and he placed in the top five in runs, triples, stolen bases and total bases.
Bowen led the Rangers to their first GAC Championship berth in program history. Despite the abbreviated schedule, the Rangers won their most games, 26, in their Division II era.
Bedard, Morrow, Yakel and Chrisman all added All-GAC First-Team honors to their accolades. Arkansas Tech’ starting pitcher Patrick Miner earned First-Team honors by unanimous vote. He led the league with 89 strikeouts, tied for the top spot with eight wins and ranked second with a 3.57 ERA. The top-seeded Wonder Boys matched the GAC high with three First-Team selections. Outfielder Josh Detweiler and designated hitter Evan Hafley joined Miner on the First Team.
Southern Arkansas, the regular-season co-champion with Arkansas Tech also put three on the First Team in starting pitcher Jacob Womack, catcher Brett McGee and second baseman Austin Baker. Arkansas-Monticello also produced three First-Team honorees in third baseman Jordan Johnson, shortstop Dylan Borman and starting pitcher River Hunt.
SWOSU first baseman Drew White, Henderson State starting pitcher Spencer Taack and Northwestern Oklahoma State’s Marques Paige rounded out the First Team.
Northwestern Oklahoma State and Oklahoma Baptist each placed four players on All-GAC Second Team. Starting pitcher Scott Creedon, reliever Kaleb Honea, outfielder Daschal Johnson and designated hitter Blake Hoffman represented the Rangers. Infielders Hector Ruvalcaba and Kaimana Bartolome plus starting pitcher Jake Lipetzky and outfielder Walker Keller made the team from the Bison. The rest of the All-GAC Second Team featured UAM’s Mason Philley and Andrew Piraino, Southwestern Oklahoma State’s Keyshaun Smith and Zach Baxley, Arkansas Tech’s Jonathon Arrieta, Harding’s Connor Kelly, Henderson State’s Danny Mitchell and SAU’s Zach Smith
The Honorable Mention All-GAC Team consisted of Arkansas Tech’s Hayes Cox and Trace Maddux, Harding’s Harrison Heffley and Cody Smith, Henderson State’s Taylor Langston and Joe Myers, Southern Arkansas’ Tucker Burton and Ty Manning, Ouachita’s Luke Scaggs and Cooper Timmons, Southwestern Oklahoma State’s Nate Postlethwait and Miguel Soto, Arkansas-Monticello’s Grant Shepherd, Northwestern Oklahoma State’s Grant French, Oklahoma Baptist’s Ramon Enriquez and Southern Nazarene’s Colby Entwistle.
Bedard also earned a spot on the league’s All-Defensive Team. Harding led the conference with four All-Defensive selections in Kelly, Smith, David Butterfield and Luke Van Dover. Arkansas Tech’s Cox and Matt Robbins, Northwestern Oklahoma State’s Johnson and Arkansas-Monticello’s Aaron Gaela filled out the team.
WASHINGTON— Today, Congressman Markwayne Mullin (R-OK) and Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-CA), Chair of the House Armed Services Military Personnel Subcommittee, along with co-leads Reps. Sylvia Garcia (D-TX), Troy Balderson (R-OH), Veronica Escobar (D-TX), Jason Crow (D-CO), and 168 additional co-sponsors, reintroduced the I am Vanessa Guillén Act in honor of the late SPC Vanessa Guillén and the many survivors of military sexual violence who have bravely come forward in the wake of her disappearance and brutal murder.
The I am Vanessa Guillén Act would revolutionize the military’s response to reports of sexual harassment and sexual assault by making sexual harassment a standalone offense within the Uniform Code of Military Justice and moving prosecution decisions of sexual assault and sexual harassment cases out of the chain of command, as well as establishing a process for compensating servicemembers who survive sexual violence when the military has been negligent. It also reforms the Army’s Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention (SHARP) program. Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI) introduced her companion legislation co-sponsored by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) in the U.S. Senate today.
SPC Guillén’s brutal murder became the catalyst for long overdue change when her family refused to let her case be neglected by Army leadership at Fort Hood. This month, the Army’s internal investigation found that SPC Guillén was sexually harassed by her platoon sergeant and that her command was aware of the allegation but did nothing. Last year’s Independent Review Committee report found that the Army’s sexual assault and sexual harassment prevention and response programs had failed at Fort Hood, and the I am Vanessa Guillén Act incorporates recommendations from the independent review. The Guillén family supports the I am Vanessa Guillén Act.
Specifically, the I am Vanessa Guillén Act would:
Move prosecution decisions on sexual assault and sexual harassment cases outside of the chain of command to an Office of the Chief Prosecutor within each military service;
Create a standalone military offense for sexual harassment;
Establish trained sexual harassment investigators who are outside of the chain of command of the complainant and the accused;
Require both DoD and GAO to conduct separate evaluations of the military services’ Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention (SHARP) programs;
Reform and professionalize the Army’s SHARP program by establishing civilian leadership and ensuring that victim advocates and sexual assault response coordinators are full-time positions and report to an independent chain of command; and
Establish a process by which servicemembers can make claims for negligence and seek compensatory damages against DoD in the case of sexual assault or sexual harassment.
“The issue of sexual assault and sexual harassment in the military isn’t a Democrat or Republican issue – it’s an American issue. We must strengthen the military’s ability to protect its most important resource, which is the people who willingly sign-up to protect all Americans,” Congressman Mullin said. “The I am Vanessa Guillén Act will also encourage survivors to come forward to report sexual assaults and sexual harassment and to provide justice. This is about protecting our men and women in uniform and I will keep fighting so no family has to go through what the Guillén family has gone through.”
“One year after the senseless murder of SPC Vanessa Guillén, and after two damning reviews, the need for fundamental reform of the military’s approach to sexual assault and sexual harassment has never been more urgent. Military leadership has had decades to solve this problem, yet continues to fail. Toxic command climates, rampant sexual violence, lack of accountability, and retaliation against survivors continue to worsen,” Chair Speier said. “Congress must enact these reforms this year to achieve justice for Vanessa Guillén and all survivors of sexual violence. We must send a message to all servicemembers about the nation’s expectations for their conduct and the culture of the military. Congress must pass the I am Vanessa Guillén Act this year.”
“With the reintroduction of the I am Vanessa Guillén Act, we want to make sure that transformative and comprehensive reform happens for how the military treats victims of sexual assault within their ranks,” Congresswoman Garcia said. “This is a step in getting justice for Vanessa. And progress has been made but we need to do more. Vanessa Guillén, a daughter of immigrants who wanted to serve her country, has forced the most powerful military in the world to change and be better. I want the Guillén family to know that we stand with you and will continue fighting until the bill becomes a law.
“Our military servicemembers risk their lives for our nation, and in return, it’s our country’s obligation to ensure their safety,” Congressman Balderson said. “I am proud to once again support this legislation, which takes important steps to ensure survivors of sexual assault and sexual harassment in our military can tell their stories without fear of retribution as they seek the justice they deserve.”
“More than one year ago, the unspeakable tragedy of Spc.Vanessa Guillén’s murder shocked our nation and shed new light on the epidemic of unchecked harassment, assault, and retaliation throughout our armed forces,” Congresswoman Escobar said. “Vanessa’s memory sparked a movement for justice and accountability that I am honored to carry forth through the I Am Vanessa Guillén Act. I look forward to working with my colleagues, Chair Speier, Secretary Austin, and the Biden administration to advance this bipartisan legislation and put an end to this toxic culture in the armed forces and protect those who bravely put their lives on the line for our country.”
“In basic training I was taught everything from marksmanship to the chain of command, but preventing sexual assault was not a priority,” Congressman Jason Crow said. “The military failed Vanessa Guillén and we will continue to fail our service members until we create a system and culture of accountability. It is Congress’ role to decide what sort of military our nation will have and we must pass the I am Vanessa Guillén Act to protect our women and men in uniform.”
“Vanessa Guillén’s story underscores why we need a stronger, more effective response to sexual harassment and sexual assault in the military,” Sen. Hirono said. The I Am Vanessa Guillén Act shifts prosecutorial decisions for sexual harassment and sexual assault outside the chain of command and requires sexual harassment allegations to be investigated outside the immediate chain of command. These changes are in line with the Department of Defense’s Sexual Assault Independent Review Commission’s preliminary recommendations. I have advocated for years to change how the military addresses sexual harassment and sexual assault, and it is past time for us to make necessary changes that respect survivors and restore faith in the military justice system by passing the I Am Vanessa Guillén Act.”
OKLAHOMA CITY (May 13, 2021) – State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister today commended state leaders after the announcement on the Fiscal Year 2022 state budget agreement. The agreement includes a record $3.2 billion in funding for common education.
"After such a very challenging year in the wake of the pandemic, the budget agreement announced today is tremendous news for students, teachers and, in fact, all Oklahomans who benefit from a strong educational system," Hofmeister said.
"An additional $137 million for the school funding formula and $60 million for textbooks will go a long way toward ensuring our children are on track academically. We are grateful to the House and Senate leadership and Gov. Stitt for this considerable investment in public education."
OKLAHOMA CITY -- Oklahoma House Democrats released the following statement in response to Gov. Kevin Stitt and legislative Republicans announcing their state budget for Fiscal Year 2022.
“Budgets are a product of the priorities of their authors," said House Minority Leader Emily Virgin. "Both Democrats and Republicans proposed tax cuts this week. Republicans focused on lowering the tax burden on corporations, while House Democrats focused on working Oklahomans and their families.
"Both Democrats and Republicans proposed savings. Democrats called for more than $300 million in savings, while Republicans called for $800 million.
"While an extra $500 million in savings sounds nice, our citizens are literally paying the price.
"With this money, we could end the state sales tax on groceries, which would save Oklahomans more than $250 million per year. We could do this and restore and increase the Earned Income Tax Credit, which puts money directly back into the pocket of Oklahoma workers.
"Finally, we can not in good conscience vote for any budget that sends $25 million of hard-earned taxpayer money to private schools. ”