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2014 Year In Review

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Friday, January 16, 2015

January 1...

Thieves targeted chain saws in four break-ins at two Leon businesses, Barker Implement and Leon Plumbing and Hardware.
Barker Implement and A&M Green Power merged to form Agri-Vision. The merger of the two dealers was to create a company to bring the next generation solutions to its customers.
Decatur County Hospital hosted a retirement celebration for CEO Lynn Milnes who moved to Kentucky.

January 8...

Iowa's weather brought single digit below zero temps and dangerous wind chills of -20 to -50 degrees below.
HCI Hospice Care Services volunteer Jerry Hampton presented Leon resident Lee Elson with a pin recognizing Elson for his service in WWII.
Decatur County Hospital and the local community welcomed new CEO Suzanne Cooner.

January 15...

Heidi Bell, owner of From the Ground coffee shop in Leon, was named 2013 Leon Citizen of the Year by the Leon Chamber of Commerce.
New CEO Suzanne Cooner of the Decatur County Hospital was welcomed by staff and the community.
Nadine Rollins celebrated her ninetieth birthday.
Larry Moffett was recognized for his 12 years as a Leon City Council member.

January 22...

The SWCC Welding Academy class, a new class offered at Central Decatur, designed and constructed a new sign for The Little River Archers course located on the east side of the lake road.
Knights of Columbus free throw contest winners were boys: Matthew Boothe, Cole Pedersen, Michel Evertsen, Carter Boothe and Jordan Lester. Girl winners were: Alaina Applegate, Emma Atwood, Caylie Hickman and Lily Simon.

January 29...

The Central Decatur Cardinals and the I-35 Roadrunners raised $5,000.00 during their 3rd annual Coaches vs. Cancer basketball game held at Central Decatur.
The home of Joe and Kathy Havard of Weldon was completely destroyed by fire.
Fourth grader Maggie Layton, daughter of Ted and Emily Layton of Leon, won CD's Geography Bee.

February 5...

Several Central Decatur wrestlers and their Coach Kyle Ramaeker escaped serious injury when the van they were in struck a patch of black ice and overturned a few times shattering windows and ripping the rear tire from the axel. They were on their way to Colfax-Mingo for a tournament. The Cardinals finished the day 4-1 claiming 2nd place.
Tonita Helton opened Helton Law Offices, PLLC at 501 N.W. Church in Leon.
Terrace Park Assisted Living in Leon was named a NCAL Quality Initiative 2013 Tier Honoree.

February 12...

The CD Cardinal wrestlers finished second as a team which qualified them, for the first time in school history, for the Regional Dual Tournament and seven grapplers advanced to the District Tournament.
Leon Kessel, Lamoni, was selected as a winner in America's Farmers Grow Communities sponsored by Monsanto. He chose the Decatur County Hospital to receive the $2,500.00 to be used for landscaping.
Two buildings on East 2nd Street were torn down starting the process to the construction of the new Decatur County Jail.

February 19...

The CD Lady Cards were the Pride of Iowa Conference Champs with a 13-3 record and an overall record of 17-4.
Three CD athletes advanced to the next round of the Knights of Columbus free throw competition. They were Lily Simon, Carter Boothe and Alaina Applegate.
Several local youth competed in the Iowa Winter Games trap-shooting competition at Ankeny. Receiving gold medals were Justin Shields, Keaton Minnick, Rayden Boswell, Ben Savely, Jordan Miles and Tate Swartz.

February 26...

Hallie Linhart, CD Lady Cardinal, scored her 1,000 career point during a regional game against Mt. Ayr. Hallie also broke Sara Lincoln's record of most points scored in a single season with 411. Lincoln had 410.
GRM Network (Grand River Mutual telephone) had their internet attacked by hackers.
Mother Nature showed off with sleet, hail, snow, thunder, lightning and rain over much of southern Iowa.

March 5...

The City of Leon was left in a dire situation when both water towers were completely drained as a result of a broken water main pipe.
Lamoni Demons boys' basketball team qualified for the Iowa Boys' state Tournament with their win over Pleasantville 64-41.
Raymond Van Laar, a Grand River Lions Club member was presented the Melvin Jones Fellowship Award. It was the highest award that can be bestowed on any Lions Club member.

March 12...

The water main break was found in front of the Leon Post Office, fixed by the city crew and the boil ban was lifted.
Sherissa Goodman, 35, and her daughter Shyla Matte, 3, along with Charles Downard died as a result of a two vehicle crash on J-20 due to icy road conditions.
Galen St. John of Decatur City was arrested for stealing 14 head of cattle from a rural Van Wert farm.

March 19...

The City of Leon and Decatur County decided to split the cost to re-surface the Little River Lake Road that connects Highways 2 and 69.
Retirement reception was held for Dr. Patricia Magle.
Sydney Smith received a Gold Rating in Agriculture Sales and earned the right to participate at the State FFA Convention.
Mary Lindsey and Annalise Minnick qualified to attend the North Central ACDA Honor Choir held in Des Moines.

March 26...

CD's Drama Club presented The Miracle Worker, the story of Helen Keller, at the SCIT Theatre.
A flock of turkey buzzards were hanging out on Leon's blue water tower waiting for Spring's late arrival.
Nathan Harrah, Cappie Robbins and David Huppert, CD bowlers, earned district recognition.

April 2...

Dr. Patricia Magle retired from CHCSI after many years of serving the resident of Decatur County at the Lamoni and Leon clinics.
Fire delayed the opening of a new convenience store, Hour Place, located in the former Pumps Plus building.
Work was continuing on the site of the new Decatur County jail.

April 9...

Marcus Foltz was the recipient of the coveted DEKALB Award presented at the annual Central Trail FFA banquet.
Curtis Boothe was named Leon lions Educator of the year.
The First Presbyterian Church of Leon announced that it would hold its last worship service on June 1, 2014.
Seniors honored for being on the honor roll for four years were: Caitlyn Saxton, Jeals Elsberry, Whitney Eivins, Kate Havens, Kaitlynn Yoder, Cappie Robbins, Austin DeLong, Marcus Foltz, Logan Brown and Dillon DeLong.

April 16...

Central Decatur Cardinal Jazz band finished 11th at state. RJ Kunze earned special recognition for his guitar solo.
"Up, Up and Away" was the theme of Central Decatur's 2014 Prom. The evening included promenade, dinner and dance and Go APE activities.

April 23...

The Easter Bunny made his yearly appearance on a beautiful spring day at Harvey Park.
Renovation of the court house was in progress.

April 30...

Community members, school board, administrators, teachers, business owners and parents gathered at an information meeting at the CD library to hear feedback for some identified facility needs and projects.
Leon Chamber of Commerce held their second annual clean-up day. Around 300 volunteers worked on various projects around the community.
Dennis Eastin, a 1982 Central Decatur graduate, was hired as superintendent of the South Harrison School District at Bethany, Missouri.

May 7...

Decatur County Ag Awareness was held to educate 4th and 5th grade students in the county about the many sectors in agriculture. The Decatur County Farm Bureau and the Central Trail FFA teamed up to sponsor the yearly event.
Governor Branstad and Lieutenant Governor Reynolds visited CD School to review the newly implemented TAP Program.
Leon Fire Department received a new slide-in water tank unit for their grass truck.

May 14...

Logan Brown and Malorie Irving were CD's 2014 Arion Award winners.
Kate Havens was recognized by Governor Branstad for her academic excellence.
Dalton Rhum made a hole-in-one on hole number seven at the Leon golf course.

May 21...

Ryan Fulkerson, who was found unconscious in a ditch north of Decatur, died of his injuries. The DCI was helping county officials investigate the homicide.
The Central Decatur Cardinals qualified five events to compete at the State Track Meet.
Rosa Sondag, CD's Ag instructor, was presented the Teaching Excellence Award from National Honor Society president, Austin DeLong.

May 28...

Cait Conner, a Simpson College graduate, joined the Journal-Reporter staff as an intern.
Noah Simon qualified for the State Boys' Golf Tournament.
Central Trail FFA members Dillon DeLong, Marcus Foltz, Logan Brown and Austin DeLong restored a 1946 Model B John Deere tractor.

June 4…

Leon and Decatur County were enduring the invasion of the 17 year cicadas/locusts.
CD retiring teachers and staff were Tina Hill, Jeanne Cesteros, E.B. Sherman, Kathay Hoyt and Craig Hoyt.
Noah Simon finished third at the boys' state golf tournament.
The CD girls golf team qualified for the girls' state golf tournament.

June 11…

Alli Masters, 7th grade student at Central Decatur, earned a position on the Iowa National Junior High rodeo team. She competed in the finals held in Des Moines.
Storms accompanied by "buckets" of rain swept through the county. Lamoni reported 6 to 8 inches and more in some locations. At the Brandon Eastin home north of Davis City, trees were uprooted, limbs broken and a windmill was flattened.
The new Little River Bait house was opened.

June 18…

Flood assistance was available for Decatur County as a result of the severe storms on June 3.
Loop Rawlins was to entertain at the Leon Rodeo scheduled for July 2, 3, 4 and 5.
Stephanie (Perkins) Mahan graduated with a degree in Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) from Des Moines University.

June 25…

Allison Reynolds, nurse at the Decatur County Hospital, received the 2014 Daisy Award for extra ordinary nurses.
The town of Pleasanton was making plans to celebrate the 4th of July for the 157th time.

July 2…

Kay Herring, of Davis City, received a 2014 Governor's Volunteer Award from Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds during ceremonies held in Pleasant Hill. She was honored for her service, dedication and leadership to SCICF.
Doug Kouba was selected as the 2014 Grand Marshal of Leon's 4th of July parade.

July 9…

Local contestants, Logan Hullinger, Andrew Leeper and Chance Masters received some of the top prize money at the Leon Rodeo. Over 705 cowboys and cowgirls competed at the rodeo.
Lacey Jensen was crowned the 2014 Leon Rodeo queen and Hope Lowry was named princess.

July 16…

The Decatur County courthouse clock tower received a new coat of paint.
Joyce Young retired from the Decatur County Hospital after thirty-three years of service in the radiology department.
Three new medical professionals joined the CHCSI staff. They were Rebecca Nunn-Ryan, ARNP; Jen Spoerl, ARNP; and Dr. Jessica Stark, DDS.

July 23…

Hanna Mendenhall was crowned queen of the 2014 Decatur County Fair. Alayna Link was crowned fair princess.
Cierra Clark, representing Central Trail FFA, sang the National Anthem at the Iowa Corn Indy 300 at the Newton Speedway.

July 30…

Decatur County Public Health reported that there were 14 confirmed cases of Pertussis (whooping cough) in Decatur County.
Residents had the opportunity to share their ideas for improving Leon at a design workshop by the Leon Community Visioning committee.
A Cabela's video crew filmed a commercial on the farm owned by the late Clyde Taff near Blythedale, MO. Grandson Danny Taff of Denver was the producer.

August 6…

The Decatur County Jail Authority rejected all bids on the new jail project. It was to be rebid at a later date.
Community Health Centers of Southern Iowa announced that its 340B Program pricing was again available in the Leon and Lamoni Hy-Vee Pharmacies.
Todd Savely was the newly hired City of Leon police officer.

August 13…

Cayle and Jason Buckingham opened Buck Naked Sporting Goods on the westside of the Leon square.
The Decatur County Hospital Auxiliary presented a check for $10,000 to hospital CEO Suzanne Cooner.
Neshamah Breshears, Cierra Clark and Jeremy Deemer, and Macson Lindsey performed in the Bill Riley Talent Shows at the Iowa State Fair.

August 20…

CD School started August 19 with five new staff members: Britta Stowater, 6th grade; Patty McHenry, kindergarten; Alexa Groff, high school science; Fern Wilson, elementary nurse and Ben Stoner, elementary P.E.
The Leon City Council approved the sale of land north of the hospital and the purchase of land north of the Leon Cemetery.
Elizabeth Hamilton joined the nursing staff at S.C. Home Health.

August 27…

Teresa Gentry retired after 34 years of carrying mail for the Leon Post Office.
Decatur County was designated a "Skilled Iowa Community."
Jacob Hayworth and Kaleb Ogier were selected to have their film, "Pain Killer," shown at a Dallas, Texas film festival
Madison Leahy donated stuffed animals to the Decatur County Hospital ER to be given to children who come to the ER for treatment.

September 3…

Joe and Joanie Boggs of Weldon received the Iowa Farm Environmental Leader Award from Governor Terry Branstad during ceremonies held at the 2014 Iowa State Fair.
City Clerk, Angie Blades, submitted her letter of resignation to the Council.
Work was beginning on the repairs of the blue water tower.
CD Cardinals defeated the Nodaway Valley Wolverines 33-12 in the season opener.

September 10…

The Decatur County Hospital welcomed Dr. Ed Wehling, D.O. to its staff.
Josh and Lucretia Coon opened Hour Place, a convenience store, located in the former Pumps+ building on East 1st Street in Leon.
James Murphy, 43, escaped from the Decatur County Jail on September 5 and was apprehended late September 6.
Phase I of the renovation of the Masonic Park was begun. New signage was installed.

September 17…

The re-surfacing of NW Little River Lake Road was completed.
James Murphy, the inmate who escaped from the Decatur County jail, plead guilty to a list of charges. He faced 55 years in prison and was not eligible for parole until he served 17 ½ years.
Lucinda Williams celebrated her 101st birthday.
Central Trail FFA officer team assisted at the Grand River Rodeo.

September 24…

The Central Decatur locker room renovation project was nearing completion.
A new American flag was donated to Central Decatur High School by the South Central Iowa Community Foundation.
A new ‘birdhouse" Lending Library was installed on the southwest corner of the Court house lawn.
October 1…
CD Homecoming queen and king candidates were: Jacy Scott, Jacey Masters, Morgan Kofoid, Annalise Minnick, Kaleb Ogier, Trenton Wells, Noah Simon and Peyton Gilbert.
Leon Park and Rec Board was awarded a $7,500 Wellmark grant to be used at the Masonic Park.
An indoor archery range was in the plans to be located above Buck Naked Sporting Goods.

October 8…

Annalise Minnick and Noah Simon were crowned queen and king of Central Decatur's 2014 Homecoming. Crown and football carriers were Breegan Lindsey and Asher Norman.
CD's cross country team held a successful Color Run. Over 150 participated in the run/walk which was a fund-raiser for the team.
Dr. Dan Heffron gave a special presentation on health and wellness to the music department at Simpson College in Indianola.
Angie Blades was recognized for 10 years of service to the city of Leon as City Clerk.

October 15…

Kolton Hewlett was presented with the "Volunteer of the Month" award from the Volunteer Center of Southern Iowa. Program director Amanda Edsall made the presentation.
A concrete slab was poured on the northwest corner of the court house lawn. This was to be the future home of Decatur County's Freedom Rock.
CD South Elementary took part in the Healthiest State Walk.

October 22…

The Leon Brethren Church celebrated its 100th anniversary with its yearly songfest.
Contracts were awarded for the new Decatur County Jail.
Local residents enjoyed the Leon Chamber of Commerce's Fall Festival.

October 29…

CD Coach Manny Atwood was the recipient of the 2014 Roushar-Evans Service Award recognizing him for his many years of service and quality of teaching the game of basketball.
Central Decatur officially had 701 students in grades K-12. This was the highest enrollment in 8 years.
Osceola's Farm and Home store was completely destroyed by fire.

November 5…

The Central Decatur football team won the first round of Class 1A playoffs by defeating Pella Christian 38-14.
A large boulder from northern Missouri was placed on a cement slab in the Decatur County Courthouse lawn to become the county's Freedom Rock to be painted in the Spring of 2015.

November 12…

Central Trail FFA members Brock Boswell, Alex Foltz and Alexis Reno received their American FFA Degree at the convention held in Louisville, KY.
Central Decatur Drama department presented "South Pacific" at the SCIT Theatre.
Leon Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting for new business Hour Place.

November 19…

The first snow of the season arrived with snow totals between 2 and 4 inches.
CD schools honored local Veterans at their annual Veterans Day assembly and program.
The Leon City Council finalized the City Administrator contract with Greg Crocker.
Preliminary ground work had commenced at the site where the new jail will be built.

November 26…

CD School Board approved soil samples and site surveys toward the possible construction of a new track/football field and bus barn.
The Leon Alco store posted going out of business signs on their doors.
Landon Burke was sworn in as a new deputy with the Decatur County Sheriff's department.
Junior Jennings retired after 45 years as a city employee.

December 3…

Dr. Mark Easter sustained injuries in a single car accident that occurred because of slick road conditions.
Four Central Decatur football players were selected as All-Stars from the KAAN Radio Bethany, MO listening area. They were Peyton Gilbert, Kyle Palmer, Trenton Wells and Peyton Pedersen.
A fire destroyed the mobile home of Trae Buckingham in Decatur City.
Davis City held a public meeting to discuss the condition of their wastewater system.

December 10…

Cord Hamilton, Nash Dykes and Gavin Smith were pictured with Santa at the annual Leon Noel where they told Santa their wishes for Christmas.
Kristin Schaff, Grant Smith, Isaac Hall and Maizee Lindsey planted twelve trees at the Masonic Park in Northwest Leon. This was part of a community betterment project they started last year in their 6th grade school year (2013-2014).
Winners in the Leon Noel Christmas tree decorating contest were three Decatur County 4-H clubs. They were the Decatur County Achievers, the Wranglers and the Decatur County Dynamites.

December 17…

The Central Decatur Jazz band earned a repeat trip to the state competition in 2015.
Kat Akers, owner of Fusion Dance Studios, announced that classes were going strong with 58 members participating.
Both CD high school basketball teams were undefeated in this year's season going into Christmas break.
Trenton Wells and Colton Ranney finished in first place at CD's Invitational Wrestling tournament. Wyatt Dale placed second.

December 24…

2014 Lighting contest winners were Lila Deemer, 1st; John and Jane Chaille, 2nd; and Eric and Laria Rasmussen, 3rd.
The Iowa Department of Education received a directive that there was to be no automatic granting of waivers to start school early.

December 31...

Long-time Decatur County treasurer, Mary Andrew, passed away at her home in Leon. She served as treasurer for almost twenty years.
The Cardinal Quartet: Brianna Keeney, Cierra Clark, Annalise Minnick and Mary Lindsey, performed the National Anthem before the start of the Iowa Energy basketball game at Wells Fargo in Des Moines.