Both southbound lanes, one northbound lane of U.S. 431 at Flint River open

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

HUNTSVILLE — The Alabama Department of Transportation restored traffic to both lanes of the southbound U.S. Highway 431 bridge at the Flint River during the weekend.

The inside southbound lane reopened about 4:30 p.m. Saturday, after Alabama Department of Environmental Management crews completed cleanup work at the site.

The inside lane of the northbound bridge will remain closed until repairs are completed.

Design work is underway and is anticipated to take about three weeks. Contract repair work could begin within six weeks.

ALDOT will upgrade traffic control features on the northbound bridge from cones or barrels to concrete barriers in preparation for the repairs.

Northbound motorists may continue to encounter some delays at peak traffic times. Drivers are asked to be mindful of crews working and trucks entering the roadway.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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Things to do in Cherokee County Tuesday, May 6

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

Story Time sessions resume on Jan. 13—Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9:30 a.m. at Cherokee County Public Library. The event will include crafts, songs, games, and of course, stories!

The Family Care Center in the Piggly Wiggly Shopping Center in Centre includes a Thrift Store open to the public Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. The Family Care Center helps others by giving clothing, food and possibly hope to families in their time of need. The Center asks for your help by supporting its thrift stores. There are currently three locations, the one in Centre, another at 5511 Main St. in Hokes Bluff and another in Cedar Bluff. The Center is currently helping more than 100 families per week and thanks the community for its continued support. Director is Cindy McGinnis.

Weight Watchers meets every Tuesday. For more information call 256-526-8003.

The next meeting of the Cherokee County Board of Education is Tuesday, May 5, 2015 and will be held at the Central Office. The Board Meeting will begin at 5 p.m. and items on the agenda include: 1. Adopt Agenda 2. Approve Minutes 3. Recognize: A. CMS and CCHS State Track Participants B. CMS Beta Club Winners C. CMS Birmingham Debate League Winners D. Lee Bailey, CMS Teacher – for being elected as a Alabama Community Education Association (ACEA) Board Member 4. Review Accounts Payable 5. Personnel 6. Review Job Postings 7. Other The Board regularly meets on the first and third Tuesdays of a month at 6 p.m. at the Central Office.

The Taste of Cherokee Event, sponsored by The Spirit of Cherokee, will be held at 6 p.m. at the ROC. Tickets are $10 each. Taste treats from more than 30 local restaurants and caterers on the buffet line and enjoy entertainment. This event supports the Avenue of Flags. Tickets are available at The ROC, Lanny’s, EMA Office, Pat’s Perfections and the Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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Cherokee County Arrest Report Tuesday, May 5

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

Local law enforcement agents have made the following arrests in recent days:

-Rhonda Black McGee for theft of property in the third degree.

-Mark Lemul Royal for assault in the second degree.

-Amanda Langley Sims for willful abuse of child/torture.

-Donna Delana Rutledge for theft of property in the third degree.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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Suspect involved juveniles to hide drugs

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

Local authorities arrested a Georgia woman on drug-related and child endangerment charges following a traffic stop Friday afternoon, May 1.

According to Cherokee County Sheriff Jeff Shaver, at approximately 1 p.m. Friday, Alesha Dawn Deyoung, 36, of Calhoun, Ga., was arrested after being stopped for a traffic violation in Centre. Deyoung gave Deputy Jeremy Stepps a false name and was charged with false identity to obstruct justice. She was also charged with possession of controlled substance, after juveniles in the vehicle gave officers drugs that Deyoung had given them to hide on their persons, Shaver said.

Deyoung was charged with chemical endangerment of a child for this act. Deyoung is currently incarcerated in the Cherokee County Detention Center awaiting a bond hearing, Shaver said.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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Centre First Baptist Church burns note on ROC debt

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

On a recent Sunday, Centre First Baptist Church and Community celebrated a major milestone. Thanks to a recent donation of $50,000 plus from Celebrate Recovery, CFBC was able to pay off its loan for the ROC (Recreation Outreach Center).

The initial cost of the ROC, located at 300 East Bypass in Centre, and the land upon which it was located, exceeded $3 million. Members have continued to be faithful through prayer, various fundraisers and tithes and offerings to pay off the debt.

Since that time, testimonies abound about how the building has changed lives through Celebrate Recovery, Upward Basketball and other ministries, not to mention the health benefits provided by the inside track and weight room.

In addition to church activities, the ROC, according to reports, has become a centralized location of the Annual Cherokee Electric Cooperative meeting, Lions Club Pancake Day, serves as a polling site during elections and much more.

The ROC is also home to the Shepherd’s Fold Day Care Center.

One might say the recent note burning was a dual celebration following major water damage caused by a blown gasket in January, which closed the ROC for approximately three months. While the day care center and church offices remained open, the gym, walking track and weight room were closed down and church activities were located to the Main Street Campus.

Members were delighted to report, however, that the ROC officially re-opened all activities Monday, April 20.

In a fitting sermon for the note-burning occasion, Dr. Eddie Nation, pastor, Centre First Baptist Church, shared a few words about Vision as he challenged members to keep stepping out on faith as they have with the ROC.

“Today I want us to think about vision,” said Dr. Nation. “In Alice in Wonderland, I believe the Cheshire cat said ‘If you don’t know where you are going, any road will do.’ And sometimes we think about that in our lives. Sometimes we find ourselves just kind of treading water.”

“Vision is a clear mental picture of a future given by God to His people,” said Dr. Nation. “Without Vision the people perish.”

Dr. Nation referred to the Book of Numbers in the Holy Bible where 12 spies were sent out to check out the land, which the Lord told the Israelites, was theirs.

Ten of these spies, he said, came back with a bad report, stating the land was full of giants and there was no way they could defeat these giants.

“And the whole congregation was upset, griped and complained because of the report of those 10 spies,” said Dr. Nation. “Those older than 20 were forced to spend the rest of their life in the wilderness. So the rest could go into the Promised Land. Joshua and Caleb show us what it means to have vision.”

“Vision is the ability to see,” said Dr. Nation. “They had the ability to see where God was going. Caleb pleaded before Moses. They (spies) said ‘we are not able to go up against the people stronger.’”

Dr. Nation and his wife, Anita, have served the Centre First Baptist Congregation for more than two years now.

“We just rejoice and are so proud to be a part of this congregation,” said Dr. Nation.

“I have been asked to recognize the most important giver in this whole campaign,” he said. “Let me tell you about the most important giver. That person is here today. The most important giver is one who gave persistently. This person gave so much. This has gone on for years. This person has given in season and out of season. This person has given sacrificially. The scripture talks about giving even out of our poverty. And even when we don’t have it, this person gave anyway. This person gave maybe as a choice, whether to give or do this. And that person chose to give the money. This person is taking very seriously the plans He has made. When you make a pledge, you make that to the Lord. And this person has continually given in season and out of season. This person has given all beyond measure. This person has wondered if that ROC debt is ever going down and continued to give.”

“Now who is this person?” Dr. Nation asked.

“I want to call this person out,” said Dr. Nation. “Stand just a moment. Look around. This most important giver in this whole place is to your right, and to your left, in front of you and behind you.”

“You are the most important person in this whole campaign,” said Dr. Nation. “The Gospel is about you! Ministry is about you and me. The good news is for you and this facility is a place for you to share the Gospel!”

Larry Paul Maddox, chairman of the Deacons, Centre First Baptist Church, shared some of the history of the ROC project.

“We in the Deacons’ meeting trying to decide exactly how we were going to proceed,” said Maddox. “We ad gotten so far as to drill behind you folks. We own property behind the parking lot of the church. We drilled to find out if that ground would support a building similar to this. When we drilled we found out we had plenty of water running on rock and all we had to do was open that up and we could build us a big old lake.”

They decided to search for other property and the current property became available, Maddox said.

“At that point and time we felt like we had plenty of property to do anything we want to do as First Baptist Church,” said Maddox. “We wanted to build out here we would have plenty of property for building. We proceeded in that direction and this property we bought.”

Maddox asked all of those who have worked on the various committees for the ROC, including the building committee, decorating committee, finance committee and others to stand and be recognized.

“Thank you so much for all the time you put in while we were building this building,” said Maddox.

“Folks it was a great time for us and our church was behind this 100 percent and helped us through,” said Maddox. “It worked out really well. All of you know all the things that go on here now. We know Donnie George and his group do a great job here every Friday night with Celebrate Recovery and all the other things that go on out here. This building is used. That was one of the things we were worried about was would it be used like it should be and I assure you it is. We just appreciate all of you who have given.”

They also mentioned others that have had a huge hand in the ROC project including the Rev. Melvyn Salter and the Rev. Jim Wright, former pastors of Centre First Baptist Church.

Earlier in the service, Dr. Nation challenged members that this is only the beginning

“God is not finished with Centre First Baptist Church yet!” said Dr. Nation.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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Local sailing enthusiasts share frightening experience at sea

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

LEESBURG—Eleven members and three boats of the Rome Sailing Club were involved in serious accidents that occurred during the 57th annual Dauphin Island Regatta held on Mobile Bay on April 25.

Two of the club’s three boats in the competition sank.  One boat was sunk by the high waves and winds of the storm that ripped across the bay. A second boat —a Catalina 22 —capsized and then was split in half by a 41-foot boat that simply ran over the smaller boat.  

The third boat had its mast break and fall into the boat.  The sails were still on the mast as it lay in the bottom of the boat. Tom Long, captain of the third boat—a Mirage 23.6—commented that his boat finally made it back to the dock. Without sails, the boat was somewhat less affected by the wind than those vessels with masts and sails still in place.

According to Long, the severe storm was a “freak storm. It came up quickly. Winds were constant at 60 miles an hour, with gusts up to 80 mph. The severe part of the storm lasted almost an hour and the wind was very stiff for another half hour. We wanted to be anywhere but on that water.”  Long’s crewmembers were John Garner, Bryon Corey, and Evan Smith. All were wearing their life jackets.  

Long continued “We couldn’t see anything around us. The rain was so hard and the waves were so high.” (Waves were reported to be at least ten feet in height).

“Some boats hit bridges; others hit docks. We were to go west, but the winds blew us all the way to the east side of the bay. We didn’t hit anything. We were very fortunate.” 

Evan Smith commented, “All of us in our boat were just certain we were going to be dumped into the stormy waters. It was at that time that I was glad that my mother had made me take swimming lessons all the way up to the life-saving course.”

Glenda Smith had decided not to ride in the boat during the regatta. “The weather just didn’t’ look good and I was not feeling up to par with allergies. Am I ever glad I stayed on shore”!!! Long and his crew were very pleased she was on shore—because she drove all around the bay and met them at Fairhope.

Long commented “We were four big guys and Glenda in Glenda’s little car. We were just so happy to be back on land, we didn’t care how crowded we were.”

Larry Goolsby and Tony Celamari were in the Catalina 22 that was cut in half by a larger boat. Both of the men are very experienced sailors—and their boat was in great shape for the race.

Randy Rutledge’s boat was sunk by the waves and wind of the super strong storm. He and his three crewmembers—Don and Tina Martin and Rhonda Morgan were in the water more than two hours before they were rescued. 

None of the Rome Sailing Club members was seriously injured. They did suffer bruises, cuts, and scrapes. The ones in the water also experienced a degree of hypothermia. Glenda Smith stated Friday that all of the club members had returned to northeast Alabama and northwest Georgia by late week. “Some members are expected to return to the bay to try to salvage gear that sank to the bay’s floor”—under an average of 20 feet of water. “They will either dive or hire someone to dive to determine what—if anything— is left of the boats and their belongings.”

(At press time it was learned that the Coast Guard is removing the sunken boats from the floor of the bay. Boat owners are being contacted and asked where they want their boats taken).

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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