Officer David Rigney touched many lives
By Shaun Tilghman
News Editor – North Manchester News-Journal
Just over a week has passed since the accident that claimed the life of North Manchester Police Officer David Rigney, and in the wake of tragedy, communities across Wabash County have joined together not only in mourning the loss, but also in celebrating his life.
The 39-year-old LaFontaine native was off-duty when the crash occurred last Monday afternoon. Rigney was heading south on State Road 15 when his SUV fishtailed and crossed into the northbound lane, where it was struck by a school bus, before returning to the southbound lane and being struck by another vehicle – he was pronounced dead at the scene.
Sgt. Brian Enyeart, a veteran of the North Manchester Police Department, said the loss was devastating on many different levels.
“People outside of law enforcement don’t understand the bond that law enforcement officers have – it’s more than just as coworkers or even friends, we truly are ‘brothers in blue’,” Enyeart said. “There is a lot of stuff that is easier to talk about with other officers than with other people, because they just don’t understand. With Dave, you always knew if you needed anything you could call him and he would be there to help you out.”
by Gary Andrews
Not only did the Wabash Lady Apache basketball team open their 2014-15 season with an impressive 60-44 win over Mississinewa Friday; they got to be part of history as senior Claire Cromer went off for 42 points to set the Wabash single game scoring record.
The Lady Apaches dominated right from the start, jumping out to an 11-0 lead and leading 14-4 after the end of the quarter. Claire Cromer had all 14 points for Wabash.
Mississinewa would cut the Wabash lead to 16-10 early in the second quarter before Shelby Stone buried two shots from behind the arch to build the lead to 22-10. The Indians again cut the lead to single digits before Cromer drained back-to-back three’s, then hit four straight free throws to increase the lead to 31-18. At 31-22 Cromer would hit a shot before the buzzer as Wabash led 33-22 at the half.
Kristin Cromer and Sarah Puckett would get in on the scoring action in the third while Claire Cromer kept rolling as the Lady Apaches built their lead to 45-25 before leading 45-26 after three.
Claire Cromer would hit a three to get the Wabash scoring going in the fourth as sister Kristin hit two free throws as Wabash rolled to a 60-44 win.
Claire Cromer led the way with 42 points. Shelby Stone and Kristin Cromer added 6 points each, Sarah Puckett 4, Katie McCauley 2.
By Bill Barrows
Periodically, I have the privilege to witness heartwarming and amazing things that happen in the course of my daily activities in youth sports at the Wabash County YMCA. This week, I watched as a young man took a huge step forward on a long road back to regaining his health.
Jace Randel’s parents, Jason and Amanda, registered him to play 4th & 5th grade tackle football in August. Jace expected to play with a number of his classmates on the Cowboys team this fall while learning some life lessons along the way. He had no idea the roller coaster ride he had in front of him.
”On Aug. 20 (ironically, the same day as the first football practice) Jace began not feeling well. I took him in to his pediatrician after a few days of stomach pain. He ordered blood work, just to be sure it wasn’t an appendicitis. The blood work came back abnormal,” explained Amanda.
After consulting with their pediatrician, the Randels prepared for a trip to Riley Hospital.
“The Pediatrician explained to us that Jace's blood work had come back abnormal, and after consulting with a few Riley Oncologists, they thought Jace had leukemia.” Amanda continued, “We were being sent to Riley to run more blood work and prepare him for a bone marrow biopsy.” Jason & Amanda told their son what this meant; Jace was crushed.
“I told him that we were NOT putting our faith and trust into one test. We would be putting our faith in God who, we KNEW, could do anything!!” She explained, “What a calming affect that can have on a person, to know WHO is in control and WHO is all powerful,”
The blood work at Riley came back inconclusive. Jace received a platelets transfusion in order to perform the biopsy to prevent excessive bleeding. He had an allergic reaction to the platelet transfusion. Instantly, he began to break out in hives and his throat started swelling. After giving him large doses of Benadryl, he was finally able to sleep. The biopsy came back negative. Several other tests were run, for conditions such as; mono, autoimmune markers, and vitamin deficiencies, and all came back normal. Normal was a relative term. Jace wasn’t getting any worse, but was also wasn’t getting any better either.
by Gary Andrews
The Southwood VolleyKnights had one last game scheduled for the year Saturday and it was the state championship. The Lady Knights had won nine straight games to win the sectional, then defeated Clinton Central 3-0 for the regional title. Last Saturday Southwood won the very tough Bremen semi state by topping Adams Central 3-1 and Hammond Bishop Noll 3-2 for the semi state title. Saturday at Ball State the VolleyKnights had the task of taking on defending state champion Providence for the state title.
Southwood, the 2A public school state champion hung tough, but the power hitting of Providence ended up being too much as the VolleyKnights fell 17-25, 14-25, 18-25.
Providence got off to a 10-3 start in game one before the Knights shook off the championship jitters and started to go to work. Emilie Harnish would get a kill and Bailey Lundmark a block during a 5-0 run to close the gap to 10-8. Providence would then score 10 of the next 14 points to open a 24-15 lead before two Sami White tips kept the game alive, but one last Pioneer kill ended game one 17-25.
Southwood jumped out to a 4-0 lead to start game two with Sami White serving. Kaitlyn Murphy had a kill with White scoring on an ace and a tip. Bailey Hobbs would get a kill as the Knights extended their lead to 8-3 before the Pioneer’s got hot. Providence would score 6 of the next 7 points to tie the game at 9 before a White tip and an Emilie Harnish ace made it 11-9. With Southwood up 12-10 the sleeping giant awoke as Providence went on a 10-1 run to grab a 20-13 lead on their way to the 25-14 final.
Nancy Hoffman the James M. Hammond III award on March 13 from the Indiana Association of Rehabilitation Facilities (INARF). This award is presented to outstanding executives and administrators in the human services industry.
Hoffman graduated from Manchester University. Her first job after graduation was at Arc of Wabash County. She has been employed at Arc for 38 years. Nancy has performed many different job duties while working at Arc, and through her dedication and expertise, she has demonstrated compassion and determination towards serving people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families. Positions she has held are: Daily Living Skills teacher, Workshop Manager, Case Coordinator, Program Director, and Executive Director. While working at Arc, Nancy also taught Special Education classes at Manchester University. She was able to provide her students with a clear picture of the challengers and rewards a Special Education teacher may face in this field by sharing real life experiences she has had with people she has served in Wabash County.
Nancy has cultivated quality programs and services through her leadership. Her commitment to excellence has been recognized by CARF for the services they provide with 3-year accreditations award in 1994, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2009 and 2012. As a CARF Surveyor herself, Nancy stays informed about CARF regulations and often brings back innovative ideas and practices she observes at other agencies. Under her guidance, management staff has implemented some of those ideas, improving how services are provided.
Approximately 10 years ago, Nancy was made aware that several people who attended the day services program were soon to be homeless. The agency providing their residential care was closing in a very short period of time. At that time, Arc did not offer any type of home-based care. Nancy decided, with Board approval, that Arc would develop a residential program and offer services in the homes of these individuals. From finding and furnishing houses and apartments to assisting with all the little things that make a place a home, Hoffman ensured the program’s success. It took a lot of work in a short period of time, but Nancy helped make it happen. That program has expanded and Arc now provides services to 12 individuals who live in their own homes.
Nancy is an entrepreneur as well as a good steward of the agency’s funding. There have been a couple of years, because of reimbursement challenges, that tough decisions had to be made. Some of Arc’s programs were eliminated because Arc could no longer provide excellent service and cover their costs. Scrambling to keep the Sheltered Workshop program viable was and is a challenge. Nancy worked to find other sources of revenue that were not connected to a subcontract company or the government. Three major programs were developed: a mailing service, shredding services, and the newest program, a cardboard recycling service.
Expanding the services offered through Arc’s Day Services Programming, Nancy authorized the start of an art program, and more than 20 people with disabilities wanted to participate. The art classes started in March and the year finalized with an art show at a local gallery. Nancy has supported the addition of an agency cat that, in her own way, provides services to those in need of a soft, purring friend. In the past, Nancy was involved in Wabash County’s Special Olympics, and for several years, helped athletes participate at the local, state and national level. She has supported Arc’s participation in the Chili for Charity Cook-off and has been very proud of the many “Most Unusual Ingredient” wins. She claims that each year as a taste tester, she finds their chili to be the best, no matter what unusual ingredient it contains, even shark meat.
Many years ago, Nancy was instrumental in the creation of the Wabash County Local Rural Transportation Committee and continues to actively participate in both the local and regional Rural Transportation committees. Nancy was also a key player in the creation of the Wabash County Nonprofit Alliance, which sponsored excellent local trainings to Wabash County. This committee effectively managed a grant that was used to offer trainings locally for a low cost to Wabash County companies and individuals.
Nancy is a member of the following organizations: Wabash County Chamber of Commerce, INARF, The Arc of Indiana, and of the United States, ICEArc, Elks and the North Central Indiana Society of Human Resource Managers.