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.
by Emily Armentrout
Brittany Hobson, Indiana Wesleyan University student and 2011 graduate of Southwood High School, began making jewelry as a hobby when she was in the 8th grade. As a sophomore, Hobson was able to go to India on a mission trip with Friends Church. Never did Hobson think that such a “girly” hobby could be used to bring people to Christ, but as she has learned over the past five years, “God’s a creative God,” Hobson told The Paper.
“I met Eric Fleck from Friends Church and he just randomly asked me if I wanted to go to India. I didn’t even know him, but I was going to India,” Hobson explained.
Fleck works a lot creating sustainable income while in India. Hobson was able to work for the first time with some women in making jewelry while visiting India in 2009. After her first visit to India, she knew she wanted to return. Her second trip to India actually began in Atlanta, Ga., at Passion conference in May 2013. 60,000 youth members gathered at the Georgia Dome and Hobson found in her group of 10 people someone who had been praying for her. He was not praying for Brittany specifically, but for a woman to come along and help him with his business venture. Cole Johnson had decided to build a factory in India for women to make scarves to make and sell to support their families. Though Hobson doesn’t make scarves, she was the woman he had been waiting for, and Hobson found herself back in Kolkata, India in August 2013, a few months after meeting Johnson.
“This was a total God thing. 60,000 people and he had been praying for a woman to come along,” Hobson told The Paper.
While in India in 2009 and 2013, Hobson worked with an organization called Kolkata City Mission. KCM provides jobs for women but they also offer the spiritual side by presenting the gospel so the women can come to know Christ as their savior. Hobson worked with women from four different slums and another American girl from Indiana Wesleyan, Faith Neidig of Plymouth. Neidig is a 2013 graduate of Indiana Wesleyan University.
“I could not have done this trip without her. She agreed to be a part of this mission trip out of blind faith and assisted me with jewelry making and was able to entertain the children while I did additional training with the mothers,” Hobson said of her traveling partner.
Hobson and Neidig brought back a suitcase full of the jewelry that was made during their visit. While home, the girls sold that jewelry for a total of $3,000. The money made from the sale was sent back to Kolkata to build the factory that Johnson envisioned.
Working with the women and children in the slums was the portion of the trip that changed Hobson’s life.
“These are strong women. I have to check my attitude so I am not coming in as an American who is all ‘let me show you something,’ but I get to be a part of it. God is allowing me to be a part of something bigger than myself,” said Hobson. “We were able to spend time in the slums. Last time, we got to spend time with the kids and that was probably one of my favorite parts. We didn’t speak the same language, but we didn’t have to, we just giggled the whole time at each other,” added Hobson.
Hobson’s third trip is scheduled for the end of July, where she will check in on the women she trained during her trip last year, who have been working with a woman from Australia. After checking in on those women, she will work with a new organization in a different area with 12-15 new women to train on making jewelry. Training the women there to make jewelry offers them a sustainable job and income. Hobson thinks of this as the “new mission movement.”
“These organizations offer a sustainable income. They don’t just hand them money that won’t last,” explained Hobson. “We’re empowering these women to support their own families.”
Offering women in India sustainable income offers them an opportunity to remove themselves from prostitution.
“Kolkata is one of the biggest cities for prostitution and sex trafficking. They have the biggest red light district. Not all women are necessary trapped in it, but they are selling themselves to support their families,” Hobson told The Paper. By coming alongside the women that Hobson works with, they give them other options to support their families. Making only 200 rupees a day, which translates into $2 a day in American money, it is hard to escape poverty in Kolkata. These women are paid every time they work when they make jewelry.
Hobson and Neidig’s return trip to India has been fully funded by donations.
“I’ve sent out support letters every time and God blesses me with double,” said Hobson.
They have already purchased their tickets and Hobson is currently working on purchasing the supplies necessary to create the pieces of jewelry. Financial contributions can be made to Hobson and she will use the money for jewelry supplies but also distribute the funds for other ministries within the Delhi City Mission and Kolkata City Mission. Checks can be made and sent to Brittany Hobson at 7382 S State Road 13, Wabash.
Though Hobson’s primary task is to help these women create jewelry, she intends to focus more on the other aspect of the organizations she will be working with. Hobson wants to be more intentional in bringing the women and children she comes in contact with to Christ.
“When I go, somehow I need to get through to those women that Jesus loves them and that there is redemption and eternal life.”
Most of the women she will encounter are Hindu and it is very hard for women to convert because you often lose your entire family.
“In reality, jewelry is going to help them support their family and that’s what they need, but it doesn’t save them. They are not going to get into Heaven because they made some jewelry on Earth. That’s what these organizations do; they give them what they need in their here and now, but they also give them Christ,” said Hobson.
Hobson couldn’t believe the difference in poverty in India compared to the United States, but the United States, like India, has lost souls according to Hobson.
“Lost souls are lost souls. This community has a lot of lost people and a lot of need. Poverty is real in India, and it is real here. It looks different, but it’s still an issue. People are needing Christ over in India and people are needing Christ here,” said Hobson.
“Jewelry is such a girly thing and I never thought it would be something I could use for anything greater and look where it is now. Look at your gifts. Don’t count any of your gifts as something stupid or something you can’t use. God blesses people with certain things that are unique. Pray for the opportunity to come along. It doesn’t have to be overseas. If you have the opportunity, no matter where, just do it. If God wants you there, the money will come,” Hobson said.
You can follow Hobson’s journey this summer on her jewelry Facebook page, Jewels for Jesus- India, 2014.”