February 3rd, 2014
The burn ban for Saline County that was put into place on Jan. 31 has been lifted, according to County Judge Lanny Fite.
(Editor's Note: The following piece is a first-hand account written by the editor of The Punxsutawney Spirit, Zak Lantz. Zak was born and raised in Punxsutawney, and this account reflects more of a personal attachment to the holiday.)
PUNXSUTAWNEY, Pa. â This morning, I looked down and noticed something â I was wearing a press pass. Now, I know that it's part of my job to wear one, but it's not all that often â at least not in these parts â that I actually need one.
Devin Hunt, 23, of Bryant was found not guilty in the June 2012 killing of his 4-month-old daughter, Presley Faith Hunt, Friday night after a four-day trial in Saline County Circuit Court. The 12-person jury deliberated for 50 minutes before returning with a verdict.
Hunt was arrested and charged with capital murder in September 2012 after an investigation was launched in the case of his daughter's death. The child died from what experts called "abusive head trauma" two days after being taken to the hospital.
ASHDOWN â The Bauxite Miners defeated the Ashdown Panthers 58-50 on the road to snap a five-game losing streak in 7-4A Conference play on Tuesday.
âWe started off kind of slow,â Bauxite Coach Andy Brakebill said. âThe body language was kind of iffy. Itâs one of those deals you lose five in a row and your confidence is shaken. It was almost like, âOh no, here we go again.â We finally got to clicking a little bit better.â
Tim Keenzel, 49, of Mabelvale passed away on Jan. 25, 2014.
He was born Dec. 11, 1964, to the late Charles and Patsy Keenzel in Little Rock.
Tim enjoyed hunting, fishing, playing with his grandbabies and spending time with his family.
O.Z. Sharp, 82, of Benton died Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Little Rock. He was born Nov. 4,1931, to the late Luther and Dora (Suggs) Sharp in Alley. Mr. Sharp was a retired logger and of the Jehovahâs Witness faith.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife of 53 years, Mattie Faye (Pettit) Sharp.
William Fred Cheek Sr. of Ferndale passed away Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014. He was born Aug. 19, 1945, to the late Henry and Emmer Cheek.
William was the owner and operator of Cheek Enterprises for more than 35 years. He served in the U.S. Army and was a member of Masonic Lodge 309 of Paron.
He was preceded in death by his parents and several brothers and sisters.
William B. "Buck" Cross, 88, of Benton passed away peacefully in his home surrounded by family and friends Monday, Jan. 27, 2014.
He was of the Missionary Baptist faith.
Buck was born April 11, 1925, in Mt. Moriah to the late John and Jessie Cross. He retired from Alcoa where he had worked most of his adult life. Buck was married to his sweetheart, Louise, for 66 years. While his great love was for his family, a close second was farming. He was most at home on his tractor in a field baling hay, tending his cows or in his shop repairing his tractors.
Nellia Joyce Prather, 69, of Malvern was born July 2, 1944, and passed away Jan. 26, 2014.
Mrs. Prather was known for her kind and giving heart. She will be missed by all who knew her.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Dewey Prather; her parents, William and Linnie McLemore; and a brother, James Ray Freeman.
Mrs. Prather is survived by her children, Michael Serrano and Dani Petty and husband Matt; a grandson, Christopher Sanchez; a great-grandson, Jayden Sanchez; her siblings, Frankie Freeman and Dianne Finch; and other family members and friends.
EL DORADO â After an uninspiring first half of play, the Benton Panthers took it to the El Dorado Wildcats 65-39 in 7A/6A South Conference play on Tuesday night in El Dorado. The Panthers improve to 14-5 overall and 5-1 in the South.
âI thought the first half, rebounding-wise, we were very lackadaisical,â Benton Coach Dwaine Fishburn said. âWe let their athleticism get to us. They hit the boards hard against us. I was disappointed by our defensive rebounding.
âWe werenât hungry or played with a purpose in the first half.â