History was made at the Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Department on Tuesday, June 30, as appointees and employees of the sheriff’s office as well as new Sheriff Doug Anderson took the official oath of office.
Effie man, Angelo Piazza, Jr., was featured in the paper. He had chosen a different patriotic theme each year for the annual Marksville Fourth of July parade. This year he had a special tribute to 9/11 victims for his parade entry.
Fifty-eight people were present on Tuesday, July 1, at a meeting of the Avoyelles Parish Police Jury to voice their opinions concerning a change in the bar closing hours for the five bars located outside the corporation limits of Avoyelles. Previous closing times had been as late as 5 a.m., but were most recently at 3 a.m. on weekend nights. A proposed new ordinance being considered by the Police Jury was for the sale of alcoholic beverages for public consumption in Avoyelles to be prohibited from 2 a.m. until 5 a.m. daily.
As promised to his voters, new Avoyelles Sheriff Doug Anderson took the bull by the horns and made a bold move to clean up the prisons on his second day of office. As one of his first orders of business, Anderson conducted a surprise raid of inmates and prison cells for paraphernalia on Wednesday, July 2. The raid was the beginning of an ongoing investigation by the sheriff’s office to stop drugs and other illegal items from coming into the Marksville and Bunkie correctional facilities.
A Cottonport teen was killed in an early morning two-vehicle accident on Monday, July 7. The teen was a student at Bunkie High School. Ryan Prater, age 16 of Cottonport, was ejected from the vehicle and pronounced dead at the scene.
Don Pat Descant of Bunkie resigned from the Louisiana State Licensing Board for contractors. His resignation letter was dated June 25.
Citing the continuing unavailability of Police Chief Mack Villemarette, Hessmer Mayor Lynn Bordelon expressed concern about the ongoing lack of management for the village’s police department. Chief Villemarette had reportedly not come to work for several months and remained largely out of touch, according to the mayor and others.
The Avoyelles Parish School Board appointed two new principals at the July 1 meeting with no discussion. Stephen “Duke” Allgood of Pineville was named the new principal at Marksville High School by a 5-4 vote. Kevin Johnson of Alexandria was approved by a 9-0 vote to be the first principal at the Avoyelles Parish Alternative School (APAS) in Mansura.
The second degree murder trial of Joe Plauche of Marksville began in a courtroom in Vidalia. The trial was expected to take an estimated two weeks to complete.
A community college for Avoyelles finally opened. The school was located at the previous location of the Louisiana Technical College Avoyelles campus in Hessmer near the old Hessmer High School site.
With no one qualifying to run against Avoyelles Parish District Attorney Charles Riddle, he was elected to a second six-year term at the end of the qualifying period. 12th Judicial Court Judge Division B William “Billy” Bennett was also re-elected without opposition for a third term.
Avoyelles Parish District Attorney Charles Riddle introduced the newest modified alcohol beverage ordinance and it was passed into law by the Avoyelles Parish Police Jury at their regular meeting on July 8. The new law, that was passed unanimously, went into affect at the end of July, after it had been published in the official journal.
Victor Greenhouse, age 40 of 1474 Highway 453, Marksville, and a Marksville police officer, was charged with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and malfeasance in office after a search warrant was obtained for a home on Little California Road in Marksville.
Three Avoyelles residents were among new appointees to the Council for the Development of French in Louisiana (CODOFIL). Appointments to the board were announced by Gov. Bobby Jindal. CODOFIL focuses on development, utilization and preservation of the French language in Louisiana for the cultural, economic and tourism benefit of the state.
A new law passed by the Louisiana State Legislature resulted in the Avoyelles Public Charter School being required to negotiate payment for transportation service with the Avoyelles Parish School Board.
Parts of the Old River were hydrilla free for the first time in several years. Aerial spraying last year resulted in clearing most of the Old River complex.
Marksville City Engineer Rene Borrel reported during the council’s July 9 meeting that the city’s sidewalk renovations were complete and said final acceptance was scheduled for July 14. Councilman Earl Adams noted the sidewalk project has heightened awareness of dilapidated downtown street signs and proposed a motion to replace them.
Mansura’s mayor, Kenneth Pickett, took the town’s consulting engineers to task over quality concerns with an ongoing street improvement project. At the July 14 council meeting, Roy Waggenspack of Owen & White Inc., recommended the town issue a “certificate of substantial completion” for the contractor doing the street work.
A Concordia Parish jury found Joseph Plauche of Marksville guilty of manslaughter in Vidalia after only 30 minutes of deliberation. With the guilty verdict, it was possible Plauche could be sentenced to up to 40 years in prison and serve 85% of the sentence handed down.
It took a few months, but law enforcement officials finally caught up to Kendrick Scott, age 25. Scott, wanted for the murder of Jovondre Ravare, Sr., was arrested in Baton Rouge at 5 p.m. by the U.S. Marshal’s Task Force. Scott was charged with second degree murder and other charges.
Hessmer Police Chief Mack Villemarette resigned from office. The Hessmer Village Council and Mayor Lynn Bordelon set a special meeting on Monday, July 28 to name a new police chief. The new appointee would serve until mid-October. An election was to be held on October 4 for voters in Hessmer to elect a new chief. Vince McGlone and Kenneth Smith were the candidates running for the office.
Sheriff Doug Anderson said the sheriff’s office was facing a deficit in its own budget as well as a $2.6 million dollar bonded indebtedness to the State Bonding Commission with a payment of $280,000 due in two months.
Over 15 law enforcement officers were involved in checking vehicles on a Friday evening starting at 10 p.m. and lasting until the early morning hours of Saturday. During that time a total of eight people were arrested for DWI and another 14 people were cited for various other offenses.
The Simmesport Town Council approved a building permit application for the long-awaited community center at Magnaville. The mayor said the permit application was received on Friday, July 18, and once approved by the Simmesport council, was sent on to the Avoyelles Parish Police Jury for approval related to Act 12.
Avoyelles Parish was experiencing a drought, and as of Thursday morning, July 30, it appeared July would be the driest July in 45 years, according to Johnny Gauthier of KLIL.
The Moreauville community finally saw the replacement and reconstruction of the local bridge at Louisiana Highway 114 known as the Bayou des Glaises Channel Bridge.
The Hessmer Village Council appointed former Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Department Chief of Detectives, Kenneth Smith, age 60, to fill the unexpired term of former chief Mack Villemarette, who resigned the position effective July 21. The appointment was made at a special council meeting on July 28.
James “Boo” Fontenot, who had just turned age 57 and was the dedicated and sometimes controversial mayor of Simmesport, collapsed and died in the town hall, while tending to town business.
The Marksville City Council approved its 2008-09 budget during its monthly meeting on July 9. The budget showed a narrow $14,420 surplus after moving funds from sales tax, sewer utility and water utility funds. The issue came on the heels of the 2007-08 budget which showed the city of Marksville ending the fiscal year with a loss of $359,862.
A standing room only crowd gathered at the Moreauville Community Center on Thursday, August 7 for a town meeting with Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal. Moreauville was the second stop in the day for Jindal who had traveled to Vidalia for a similar meeting.
A racial profiling report issued by the American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana claimed the Bunkie Police Department engaged in racial profiling.
Two employees were accused of introducing contraband into the Avoyelles Parish Jail in Marksville.
The employees were arrested Thursday, August 7, according to a news release by Sheriff Doug Anderson. Both employees worked in the secured corrections division. Tammy Lemoine and Isiah Butler were both arrested and charged with malfeasance in office and introduction of contraband into a penal institution, authorities reported.
Bunkie native and bank entrepreneur R. Blake Chatelain was appointed to the LSU Board of Supervisors by Governor Bobby Jindal. The appointment was made on Tuesday, July 1.
12th Judicial District Court Judge Mark Jeansonne began the August 5 meeting of the Hessmer Village Council by swearing in newly appointed Police Chief Kenneth Smith. Smith was appointed by the council to fill the unexpired term of Mack Villemarette who had resigned. Smith asked for and received permission to relieve all but one officer of their duties.
An item placed on the agenda by board member John Lemoine at the Avoyelles Parish School Board’s August 5 meeting precipitated a lengthy discussion concerning the board’s hiring procedures for support personnel. His concerns came after a board committee modified a policy manual that was adopted by the board last spring.
Avoyelles Parish Sheriff Doug Anderson was busy trying to clean up crime. He was faced with vehicles and storage buildings filled with files that he also had to clean up. Two old school buses, an industrial van and worn down storage shed were discovered behind the mechanic shop on the property of the Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office (APSO). Inside the vehicles and shed were piles of official files, records, old checks and other documents from the APSO from as recently as 2007.
Jude Pitre was named the new dean of the Louisiana Technical College-Avoyelles campus in Cottonport. Pitre, who had been principal of LaSAS for eight years, took over the position on August 4.
Louisiana State Police Troop E confirmed to Avoyelles Publishing Company that an investigation into the Hessmer Police Department began. While the State Police would make no comment on the case, they did confirm they served the village with a search warrant on Monday, August 11 to search the police station.
Chip Johnson, an employee of the Avoyelles Parish Police Jury for the past 20 years, officially gave his two weeks notice to the Jury at its August 12 meeting. Johnson told the jury members, who were meeting at the LSU-Ag Center on Highway 1 in Mansura, he was leaving to begin work with the Avoyelles Parish District Attorney.
The town of Simmesport and Magna Corp. officials reached a compromise agreement regarding outstanding obligations related to the Canadaville/Magnaville community originally set forth in 2005 and 2006. Interim Simmesport Mayor Peter Guillot signed the agreement after it was accepted by the town council during a special meeting held on Friday, August 15.
Five people, including an Effie man, were arrested on various Internet child pornography charges following a three-month undercover operation by detectives with the St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
After apologizing to the children of Joseph and Margaret Plauche, who lost their mother and would now have to live without their father, 12th Judicial Judge Mark Jeansonne sentenced Joseph Plauche of Marksville to 40 years in prison.
Debbie Bain of Bunkie was appointed as the next principal at the Louisiana School for the Agricultural Sciences (LASAS) replacing Jude Pitre. The appointment was made by the Avoyelles Parish School Board during a special meeting on Tuesday, August 19.
Superintendent of Schools Dwayne Lemoine said public school enrollment increased by 73 Minimum Foundation Program (MFP) students from 2007 to 2008. MFP students are students in all grades in attendance in the public schools except for pre-k students.
Newly elected officers/board members of the Avoyelles Arts Council for 2008-10 were named including: Penny St. Romain, board member; Allison R. Sampson-Augustine, president; Joyce Guillot, secretary-treasurer; Bart Jones, parliamentarian and Wilbert Carmouche, vice-president.
For the fourth time since 2003, Avoyelles Parish officials eyed what looked like a major hurricane that could possibly hit the Louisiana coast, causing evacuations to Avoyelles Parish.
In the true spirit of Louisiana comraderie, farmers across Avoyelles Parish banded together to bring in already strained crops from fields as they prepared for Hurricane Gustav to strike.
As The Marksville Weekly News went to press, all eyes were focused on Hurricane Gustav churning in the Gulf and taking aim on Central Louisiana. Residents all over Avoyelles were preparing for the storm and its after effects. Farmers struggled to save crops, schools were closed, grocery store shelves were emptied and gas tanks were filled.
There was an election on Saturday, September 6, but it only involved voters of the Republican Party. However, the winner of the election would be the next U.S. Congressman from the 5th Congressional District.
Hurricane Gustav blew into Avoyelles Parish. In the wake of the storm many homes and businesses in the parish suffered major wind or water damage.
Two Avoyelles Parish public schools suffered “major” damage by Hurricane Gustav. Most, if not all, schools were opened on Monday, September 8, according to School Superintendent Dwayne Lemoine. The two schools that did not open were Marksville Elementary and Avoyelles High. Both schools suffered damage with Marksville Elementary hit the worst.
Just when residents of Avoyelles Parish thought it was safe to go outside after Hurricane Gustav, he had other ideas. Over 24 hours after roaring through Avoyelles Parish, Hurricane Gustav dumped anywhere from 10 to 15 inches of rain across the parish.
Parish officials wrapped up work on Hurricane Gustav. Anzell Jones, director of the Office of Emergency Preparedness, said all activities surrounding Hurricane Gustav were winding down. Most of the power was back on and all of the water systems in the parish were up and running.
Every road in rural Avoyelles Parish had at least one large tree down during Hurricane Gustav, according to one local emergency contractor. Brent Dauzat said, “We cleared between 300 and 400 major trees alone.” He explained the size of one major tree measured between 12 to 48 inches wide.
Events in Bunkie went from bad to worse after Hurricane Gustav when on Thursday, September 4 a major fire occurred on Main Street. The fire, which was described as Bunkie’s largest in 20 years, destroyed the two-story McNabb Music Shop and was fought by at least 75 firemen. There were no injuries reported during the fire.
A special meeting of the Avoyelles Police Jury was held at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, September 9, to discuss bids for cleaning up debris from Hurricane Gustav. The newly remodeled Police Jury meeting room was filled with local people interested in providing their services to the contractor who would be taking on the task of cleaning Avoyelles of vegetative debris caused by the hurricane.
A rush of customers left many shelves unusually bare through the weekend after a run on groceries. At Wal-Mart in Marksville, produce and meat coolers were almost empty. At least five things happened at the same time which contributed to the unusual shortage in meat and produce. Besides the extra food benefits, a local grocery manager said other factors such as people stocking up before Hurricane Ike, people restocking foods lost in electrical outages during Hurricane Gustav, extra people and evacuees in town from both storms, and a slowdown of truck deliveries out of Houston also contributed to the bare shelves.
The Marksville City Council agreed to join the Avoyelles Parish Police Jury in securing the services of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for removal of Hurricane Gustav debris. The agreement provided for the federal government to shoulder 75% of the cost with the remaining 25% to be borne by the applicable local government.
With two hurricanes back to back, Marksville Fire Chief Mark Bordelon reported that the old record amount of rainfall for Marksville in any month had been broken. September rainfall so far in Marksville totaled 20.03 inches breaking the record of 17.12 inches which fell in December of 1967 as recorded by then city clerk Walton Brouillette.
The reality of a new Catholic high school in Avoyelles Parish took a few more steps forward after an August 12 meeting. Bishop Ronald Herzog met with the Avoyelles Advisory Committee and the pastoral councils of St. Paul the Apostle Church and Our Lady of Prompt Succor (OLPS) Church, both in Mansura, to discuss the possibility.
The FEMA Disaster Recovery Center opened in Avoyelles Parish, and registered over 350 area residents, federal officials reported. The service center in Marksville was the only Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) center in Central Louisiana, and would remain open as long as needed.
The Moreauville Town Council agreed to seek to hire a contractor for meter reading that had been given to a previous contractor for the job. At the September council meeting, Councilman Oscar Goody was the only member of the council to express opposition to the hire, if the contractor was still going to charge his previous fee.
Members of the Marksville High School senior class ran around a bonfire carrying a banner during the annual homecoming celebration on Thursday, September 18, 2008.
Water problems during Hurricane Gustav would not be repeated. Plans were underway to keep water flowing during the next power outage.
Just days before the October 4 election, Ward 10 Marshal Leon Franklin was indicted by the parish grand jury. The grand jury found true bills on three different charges against Franklin, three counts of malfeasance in office, one count of theft over $500 and one count of public payroll fraud.
Members of the Avoyelles High Homecoming Court for 2008 were: Shelley Valois, Megan Clark, Samantha Joshua, Chloe Prier, Lara Harmason, Layken Bordelon, Hailey Brouillette, Kimberly Poret, Amanda Austin, Chauntra Freils, Kayla Prier and Logan Gauthier.
Roland Laborde of Marksville was using a special cane and one that was just in style for Marksville’s 200th birthday next year. Laborde had the original cane of his father, Talmadge Laborde, which was one of a limited quantity and specially made for the town’s first organized birthday celebration in 1959.
A drug raid was held in Cottonport during the pre-dawn hours of Wednesday, October 1. Nineteen people were arrested in the raid which lasted about two hours.
In a very tight election, 12th Judicial Court Judge for Division A, Mark Jeansonne, won re-election over Marksville attorney Kerry Spruill. All four tax proposals on the ballot were passed by voters with ease. The closest vote was the millage for the public health units.
Only two races on the October 4 ballot in Avoyelles ended with run-offs which would be on the November 4th ballot. Triston Knoll of Marksville and Shannon Gremillion of Alexandria were in the run-off for a seat as judge on the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeal over Loren Lampert who was also in the race.
With all the news of the national economic crisis, people in and around Avoyelles Parish were concerned about the safety of their money and the banks. According to local bankers, people shouldn’t be concerned about the local banks because they were still strong.
The Avoyelles Parish Port in Simmesport was getting more funding to help locate its first tenant at the site. The state was going to award another $250,000 for the project. The funding would help to acquire infrastructure and equipment needed for the Helena Chemical liquid fertilizer unloading facility to be located at the port.
An armed robbery at a pharmacy in Simmesport left no one hurt, but employees and customers were shaken by the experience. The Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office (APSO) issued an arrest warrant on Wednesday for Antonio Paul Dehart for armed robbery at Lacour’s Pharmacy.
Sherry Dodge was named the 2007 Property Casualty Alliance of Louisiana (PCAL) Bus Driver of the Year for Avoyelles Parish and the state. She retired after 30 years as a bus driver and was awarded a $1,000 check in recognition of the state honor and a jacket for the parish honor.
The year long celebration of Marksville’s 200th birthday began with two events on the morning of Friday, October 17. The La Bicentenaire de la Ville de Marksville (1809-2009) officially began with an opening Mass at St. Joseph Catholic Church. Following the Mass the public was invited to join the hundreds of school children on the Main Street side of the Avoyelles Parish Courthouse for a re-creation of the scientific “rain of fish” oddity which happened in Marksville on October 23, 1947.
Logan Gauthier was crowned the 2008 Avoyelles High School Homecoming Queen by 2007 queen Keyaura Turner.
Brent Whiddon was appointed principal at Avoyelles High after serving the last three years as acting principal. He replaced Bruce Juneau who retired after being on sick leave. Amy Cole was appointed assistant principal at Bunkie High. Cole replacing Debbie Bain, who was named principal at LaSAS.
One of the most brutal murder cases in Avoyelles Parish came to a surprising close Tuesday when the murderer decided to accept a plea deal which sent him to prison for the rest of his life for first degree murder. Donald Ray Johnson, Jr. of Marksville and a native of Bunkie was facing the death penalty for first degree murder if convicted by a jury. He was accused of killing a woman in the parking garage at Paragon Casino Resort.
It was announced that international opera star Robert Hale was slated to return to his native Avoyelles Parish to perform a benefit concert “Hale to the Music: An Evening with Robert Hale,” at the Avoyelles Public Charter School Performing Arts Center on November 14.
Regina Lee, pictured above, put on the period costume of her ancestor, midwife Marie “Tante Therese” Barbin, and guided tourists through a bicentennial tour of St. Joseph Cemetery.
A special Marksville Bicentennial Candlelight Cemetery Tour was planned to present various “spirits” who represented outstanding or colorful characters who lived during the early days of Marksville’s history.
After discussion by the Avoyelles Parish Police Jury and the Moreauville Town Council on the issue of a capital outlay grant, the question of who was to receive the money still remained.
A district court judge sided with contractor Mac Normand in a dispute with the village of Hessmer over a set of six houses that had been built in Hessmer two years ago. The village considered appealing the ruling. Hessmer officials contended that Normand did not meet the permits issued and wanted the houses taken down.
FEMA released its figures for the number of applications and approximate funds allocated for parish residents. According to a FEMA public information officer, there had been 4,401 applications for assistance processed in Avoyelles Parish. The total amount of money allocated for the parish as of Monday, October 13 was $1.4 million dollars.
Allens, Inc., formerly Allen Canning Company of Belledeau, was hit with a $175,000 fine in a ruling from the U.S. Federal Court in Alexandria. The fine stemmed from a negligent discharge of pollutants in violation of the Clean Water Act.
“The Shakespeare Project” adapted by James Zager, was performed at The Fox Performing Arts Center in Marksville on Saturday, November 1 and Sunday, November 2. The production was directed by Lisa Mayeux and co-directed by Tammy Monk. Members of the cast were: Ericka Laborde, Danielle Reed, Thad Parks, Shayla Jones, Ryne Mayeux, Simone Scallan, Daniel Crawford, Andrea Armand, Megan Moses, Levi Flippo, Austin Bordelon, Tory Mayeux and Tanner Flippo.
A former Avoyelles resident had been charged with three counts of negligent homicide after the van he was driving left Highway One in Alexandria struck a mother and her two teenage daughters, killing them all. The three victims were walking on the side of the road. The accident happened on Friday, October 24.
St. Anthony Catholic School in Bunkie was on “lockdown” all day on Wednesday, October 29. The school was locked down after officials discovered threatening notes concerning possible hate crimes.
During the pre-dawn hours of Monday, November 3, law enforcement officers gathered at the 911 Center in Marksville. They were there to start “Operation New Era,” a drug sweep in Avoyelles Parish conducted by the Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office (APSO) and Sheriff Doug Anderson.
It was reported that the man accused of running over and killing three pedestrians in Alexandria on Friday, October 24, had had numerous driving charges against him, including some in Avoyelles Parish. One of the Avoyelles Parish charges included a DWI.
Republican candidates John McCain and Sarah Palin carried Avoyelles Parish for the United States Presidential election held on Tuesday, November 4. What was more of a surprise in Avoyelles was Marksville attorney Triston Knoll losing the Third Circuit Court of Appeal race by 400 votes over the entire district.
The election of Barack Obama as the first African-American who would serve as U.S. President was well received within the Black community of Avoyelles.
The Avoyelles Parish School Board sought State Attorney General opinions concerning two separate issues. The board also hired another attorney concerning a possible litigation between the board and the Avoyelles Public Charter School.
District Attorney Charles Riddle responded to a question raised by Sheriff Doug Anderson in an edition of The Marksville Weekly News concerning a story about two Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office (APSO) employees brought to the grand jury. The sheriff had made the following comment on the cases, “I was surprised that these cases even went to the Grand Jury. I thought this was an open and shut case.”
The Avoyelles Parish Police Jury spent approximately an hour in a committee meeting prior to their October 21 special meeting deliberating what to do with a $450,000 state grant. They finally decided to spend the money to renovate the Moreauville Community Center as the original October 2005 Capital Outlay request had been submitted to accomplish.
The future of the middle schools and education in Avoyelles Parish took a new direction. The school board heard from a consultant it hired to study the school situation here in the parish. The consultant, Dr. William Gordon, released his recommendations to the school board at a special meeting. Dr. Gordon presented the Avoyelles Parish School Board a three-part report detailing his recommendations for reconstructing the parish’s school system. The main recommendations given at the standing-room-only meeting were to close the current middle schools first and eventually establish a single parish high school and re-establish some middle schools.
On Friday, November 14, 2008, at 10:35 p.m., Louisiana State Police Troop E responded to a fatal crash involving one vehicle. The crash occurred on LA Hwy. 107, milepost 21.9 in Avoyelles Parish. The crash involved a 2004 Chevrolet pickup, driven by Luke Gremillion (white/male 22 yrs.) of Plaucheville.
Just as the Air Force flag was being raised over the Avoyelles Parish Veterans Monument in Mansura, the roaring sounds of military jets doing a flyover were heard in honor of Veterans Day. The end of the event was just as symbolic with Retired Brig. Gen. Sherian Cadoria singing portions of the “Battle Hymn of the Republic” followed by a spectacular array of fireworks over the Cottonport Bank grounds.
A 21-year old Cottonport man was charged with battery in a stabbing case at Bunkie High School. It is believed that the incident was the first stabbing in recent times at the Bunkie High campus. Delbert Griffin, III, age 21 of Cottonport, was charged with aggravated battery, one count of criminal trespassing and one count of carrying a dangerous weapon on a school campus on Monday, November 17.
The jury was still out on the proposed school recommendations, but the initial reaction was favorable. The major school system revamping recommendations were presented by Dr. William Gordon During at a special meeting of the Avoyelles Parish School Board on November 18.
A majority of the November Hessmer Village Council meeting was spent discussing the new 250,000 gallon elevated water tower. The contractor’s time for completion expired on August 18 but the project was not completed and accepted until October 16. The 59 days of overrun by the contractor allowed the town to assess the contractor $500 per day for the 59 day period totaling $29,500.
The old section of St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery came to life when several local actors portrayed interesting characters of 19th century Marksville whose graves lie in the cemetery.
South Louisiana Community College (SLCC) expanded its educational services to Avoyelles Parish by offering health-care training in partnership with the Acadian Ambulance National EMS Academy.
Almost $5 million in aid had been given to individuals of Avoyelles because of damages related to Hurricane Gustav.
As the Christmas season began, Avoyelles Parish was less one Santa. J.R. Frappier of Mansura retired from portraying Santa after over 26 years. His home, located on L’eglise Street in Mansura, was once filled inside and out with Christmas decorations, ornaments and several Christmas trees.
The discussion on the cost of hurricane debris clean up in Avoyelles was held by the Avoyelles Parish Police Jury during their November meeting. The amount of the clean up was $289,129.23.
The first phase of the Avoyelles Port Commission began after 17 years of hard work. Helena Chemical became the first port tenant with a long-term agreement to use the facilities.
A Hessmer man was killed in a Thanksgiving Day fire in a mobile home. The man was the only person in the mobile home at the time of the blaze that was fought by the Hessmer, Bunkie and Mansura fire departments.
Teen Court of Avoyelles, Inc., completed its 11th year and was growing stronger. The court was created to free up time in larger courts as well as to address juvenile misdemeanors.
A book signing by no less than three local authors was held at the Marksville branch of The Avoyelles Parish Library on Wednesday, December 10. The authors had copies of their books on hand for sale and autographed them for those who purchased a book. The authors scheduled for the book signing were Donald Knight, Alyssa Paul and Marlene Thevenot.
The Avoyelles Parish School Board made appointments to two administrative positions at area schools during their December meeting held on Tuesday, December 2. The board named Jennifer Dismer as the assistant principal at Avoyelles High and Pat Ours as the acting principal at Mansura Middle School.
A Marksville man who had been pacing along the side of La. Highway One, was killed in a traffic accident as he was, allegedly, “screaming” at an Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office deputy.
Members of the Avoyelles Parish School Board and the public were given the chance to ask Dr. William Gordon questions concerning his recommendations for the Avoyelles Parish School System.
Mansura Mayor Kenneth Pickett and the town council worked to