A single vehicle crash Thursday night at 11 p.m. in Hackleburg left two injured, one seriously. The driver Josef Bates and passenger Brittany Todd were traveling east on Chalk Mine Road and failed to stop at the intersection of Tessney Road, adjacent to the Fairview Congregational Church. The car traveled across Tessney and crashed into an embankment. Both were transported to UAB where Josef was later released. Brittany remains in intensive care with face and head injuries. A witness who was first on the scene and called 9-1-1 stated it was apparent neither were wearing a seat belt. Josef had graduated from Phillips High School earlier in the evening. The accident was investigated by the Hackleburg police.
A two-vehicle crash Thursday, May 26, has claimed the life of a Decatur woman. Louann Jennings Speegle, 69, was killed when the 2012 Toyota Tacoma she was driving collided with a 2014 Isuzu truck driven by Tyler Jacob Pitzing, 26, of Cullman. Speegle was transported to UAB Hospital in Birmingham, where she died at 4:47 p.m. Pitzing was also injured and transported to UAB Hospital. The crash occurred at 12:50 p.m. on Winston County 41, three miles north of Arley. Nothing further is available as Alabama State Troopers continue to investigate.
Five years and one month after the devastating tornado on April 27, 2011, which destroyed the Hackleburg school, the first class graduated from the new facility Thursday night, May 26. Thirty-seven members of the Hackleburg High School Class of 2016 received diplomas in the auditorium/gym of the beautiful new building. The strikingly beautiful structure houses both the Hackleburg Elementary and High School and provided a stark contrast to the portable classrooms the students have utilized during the years of planning and construction of the new school. This was truly a historical event.
Congratulations to the Hackleburg High School Class of 2016 and to the faculty, staff and the Marion County School Board for providing the education and having the faith to rebuild the schools in such a beautiful way.
Jose Oreste Garcia Christopher Lee Chambless
After several months of investigation. on May 24, the Winston County Sheriffs Office executed a search warrant on Jose Garcia’s residence located on Beech Grove Road in Haleyville. Found at the residence and located on the property was methamphetamine, drug paraphernalia, a firearm, and money.
Arrested at the scene were Jose O. Garcia, age 66, who as charged with possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Christopher Lee Chambless, age 34 who was charged with possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and unlawfully carrying a pistol.
Involved in the investigation were Winston County Sheriffs Office Investigators Josh Silas and Brad Curtis and Chief Deputy Bryan Kirkpatrick and Deputy Caleb Snoddy. Reserve Deputies Heather Hardy and Horace Moore. Chief Shane Whitten of the Bear Creek Police Department with his K-9 “Bama.”
The Haleyville City Board of Education met Tuesday, May 24 with Beth McAlpine absent. The first order of business was the election of officers for the coming year.
Kris Burleson was elected president and Barry Burleson was elected vice-president.
Under new business, the Board approved the financial statements and board expenditures for April in the amount of $1,242,798.80, a budget amendment, salary schedule and the scheduled monthly board meeting calendar.
The Board also approved a job description for and the creation of an Intervention Teacher position and the creation of an additional class size reduction unit at Haleyville Elementary School.
Summer school at Haleyville High and math tutoring services at Haleyville Middle School were approved.
The Board approved the use of the HES Cafeteria by the Winston County Sports Hall of Fame on July 16, 2016. Two field trips and three fund-raisers were also approved.
Because it was the last Board of Education meeting of the school year, there were 29 personnel actions taken.
Kaleb Baker was hired as an indoor/outdoor summer student worker
The Board approved the non-renewal of Diane Benford as an employee and the
resignation of Tiffany Boyles as a teacher at the HES.
Mark Burleson was hired as paraprofessional at HHS.
Janna Carruth was hired as a teacher at HES.
Board approved non-renewal of Kristy Clark as paraprofessional at HES.
Holly Comeens was hired as a teacher at HES.
Leah Epperson was hired as intervention teacher with Haleyville City Schools.
Board approved the non-renewal of Misty Fannin as paraprofessional at HES.
Amy Morgan voluntarily transferred from HMS to HES as physical education teacher.
Casey Fox was hired as physical education teacher at HMS.
Abbey Harbin was hired as physical education teacher at HMS.
The Board approved the non-renewal of Kavla Holcomb as a teacher at HES.
Renee Horton was hired as Special Education Paraprofessional.
The Board accepted the resignation of Cheryl Letson as a teacher at HHS.
Jyl Loden was hired as speech-language pathology assistant.
Chandler McAlister was hired as Special Education Teacher at HES.
Board approved a voluntary transfer of Cecil Reynolds from HMS to HES.
The resignation of Jessica Sartin as a math teacher at HHS was approved.
Shelly Cooper was hired as math teacher at HHS.
Dusty Farris Yealock was hired as Special Education Paraprofessional.
Tenure was approved for the following certified personnel at HES: Lisa Emerson, Lauren Hall, Melanie Hogan and Leah Lyle.
Tenure was approved for Mandy Townsend at HMS.
Tenure was approved for Caleb Beason, Dwayne Melton and Jamie White at the Haleyville Center of Technology.
Non-probationary status was approved for Jesse Lyon at the Central Office and Gary Tidwell and Linda Thomas HHS.
William Farris was hired as summer student maintenance worker.
The Board approved the resignation of Wayne Frazier as Principal of Haleyville Elementary School.
The Board will soon be advertising for a replacement for the position of principal at HES.
Graduation for the 2016 Class of Haleyville High School will be Friday night at 8 p.m. at Bubba Scott Field.
The Haleyville City Council met Thursday afternoon with Jonathan Bennett absent.
After approving the minutes of the last meeting on May 2, approval was given to the general operation bills in the amount of $434,472.91.
Resolution 2016-21 was approved authorizing Mayor Sunseri to enter into a contract with RDS, Inc for the collection of all Haleyville sales and use taxes, business licenses, occupational fees and alcohol taxes for the city. This agreement is for 3 years.
The council approved two resolutions establishing 3 year agreements for police officers and firemen which is a way for the city to recoup any money spent on training if the officer or fireman leaves the city’s employment before serving 3 years service.
Ralph Trallo was appointed to the Haleyville Water Board.
The City Court date was changed from September 22 to September 29.
Mayor Sunseri announced the hiring 6 lifeguards at the Park and Recreation at 7.25/hour.
The next meeting of the Haleyville City Council will be Monday, June 6, 5:30 p.m. at city hall.
At 5 a.m. Tuesday morning, a maintenance employee from Lippart Components’/Kinro in Double Springs received a bomb threat on his cellular phone. Workers were told to come back later due to the threat. The Double Springs Police Department responded and in turn called for the Florence bomb squad to come sweep the building. Police had the immediate area close to the building blocked off to keep Kinro employees from harm until the sweep was complete. After a thorough search, the bomb squad determined there was no bomb and the workers were able to resume work around 10 a.m. The Double Springs Police Department is investigating the threat.
Former Winston County Sheriff Elton “Cotton” Townsend passed away Friday evening, May 14. He had a long a distinguished career as Sheriff of Winston County from January 1971 through January 1987. He was the 3rd Democrat elected Sheriff in Winston County and the first to be elected to three consecutive terms. He was the only sheriff elected a total of four terms. He was loved and respected by many people. His funeral arrangements are listed by Nichols Funeral Home of Double Springs.
Sixty-nine Haleyville High School Seniors and seven faculty sponsors left about 6 a.m. Saturday morning by bus on the annual educational trip to Washington, D.C. and New York City. The literary included Mt. Vernon, pictured above, and a visit to the Ford Theater and the Smithsonian on Sunday. Audio reports can be heard daily on Paradise 92.7 following the noon news and also at 1, 2, 3 p.m. and on the 5:30 news. The seniors will return this Saturday with graduation the following Friday, May 27 at 8 p.m. at Bubba Scott Field.
On Saturday, May 21, at 6:30 p.m. a benefit concert featuring The Marshall Tucker Band and Wet Willie will be held in downtown Sheffield (on Montgomery Ave.). The concert will be the sixth annual Sheffield Street Party to benefit the Northwest-Shoals Community College (NW-SCC) Foundation scholarship fund.
Along with The Marshall Tucker Band and Wet Willie, the concert will also feature the Fiddleworms.
The Marshall Tucker Band hails from Spartanburg, South Carolina, and has been a recognizable sound in the music industry for over 40 years. One of the band’s most recognizable hits is Can’t You See (Platinum Album, Greatest Hits), Heard It in a Love Song (Platinum Album, Carolina Dreams) and Fire on a Mountain. The Marshall Tucker Band hit, Can’t You See made it into the box office as it was used in the Kevin Costner 2008 movie, Swing Vote, and the 2001 film, Blow.
The group has scored five gold and two platinum albums. The Marshall Tucker Band was even nominated for a Grammy award in 1977 for the lyrics to the hit, Long Hard Ride.
Similar to the Marshall Tucker Band, Wet Willie, a 2016 Alabama Music Hall of Fame Inductee, has been a Southern Rock icon for more than 40 years with their blend of R&B, soul, blues rock and gospel harmonies. Wet Willie features frontman, Jimmy Hall, who is known for his vocals, harmonica and sax skills. The group is best known for their 1974 hit, Keep On Smilin’.
General admission tickets are available for $30. Tickets are available at the following sponsors: First Metro Bank (all locations), Valley Credit Union (all locations) and Zoey Belles. Tickets are also available at www.djpevents.com.