Home News Tuesday Afternoon News, September 11th

Tuesday Afternoon News, September 11th


Le Mars Middle School Remembers 9-11

(Le Mars) — Anyone under the age of 20 doesn’t have any memory or first-hand knowledge of the tragic set of events that occurred on this day, 17 years ago when jet airliners had been hi-jacked by terrorists groups, and flown directly into the World Trade Center twin towers in New York, the Pentagon in
Washington D.C. and the field in Pennsylvania. The Le Mars Community Middle School held a special assembly this morning at the Middle School auditorium sharing with 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students the historical events of that fateful day. Several members of the Middle School faculty and administration
participated in the program by recalling the timeline of events that occurred on that day of September 11th, 2001. Le Mars Community guidance counselor Kari Kopperud organized the program that also featured photos and videos of the buildings on fire, with people fleeing for their lives, and the fire, police, and other emergency medical personnel going into the burning buildings to attempt to rescue people. Kopperud explains why she wants the students to know what had happened.

The students were quiet and attentive during the special assembly program, but you may wonder if the Middle School students fully understood the gravity and impact of the tragic day, 17 years ago.

Le Mars Fire Chief Dave Schipper was a guest speaker at the morning program.
Schipper informed the students that he, and 21 other firefighters from Iowa traveled to New York, and visited Ground Zero, days following 9-11 and offered comfort to his fellow firefighters and their families in New York.
Schipper says 343 firefighters lost their lives on 9-11 when the World Trade Center buildings had collapsed. Kopperud says it is important to educate students about the events that took place on September 11, 2001.

Steve Shanks serves as the Le Mars Community Middle School principal and says it is vitally important that today’s student know and understand American history. Shanks says 9-11 is definitely a day to remember, hopefully for many years in the future.

This morning’s program lasted for about 45 minutes.



Le Mars Pickle Ball Courts Officially Open With Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony

(Le Mars) — The city of Le Mars formally introduced today the new Pickle Ball courts located adjacent to the tennis courts at the Municipal Golf Course.
Although the four new courts have been completed for a few weeks, a ribbon- cutting ceremony was held Tuesday to officially welcome the sport to Le Mars.
Pickle Ball has been growing in popularity within the past couple of years, especially in Le Mars. Several retired people, who enjoyed playing tennis, but are not as mobile, say they enjoy the sport of Pickle Ball. The game is similar to tennis, but on a  smaller size court. The ball that is used is a
whiffle ball, nearly the same size of a tennis ball, and the paddles are similar to table tennis or ping pong, but slightly larger. Like ping pong paddles, Pickle Ball paddles utilize a hard surface, instead of the mesh-woven
surface found on tennis rackets. The center net is the same height as a tennis court net, and similar in looks, but shorter in length.



Explosion At Polaris Plant Sends Employee To Hospital

SPIRIT LAKE, Iowa (AP) – Authorities say a man was hospitalized after an explosion rocked a plant in northwest Iowa, setting off a fire.
Firetrucks were dispatched to the Polaris Industries plant in Spirit Lake around 9:30 p.m. Monday. Officials say the employees had been evacuated by the time firefighters arrived. The man taken to a hospital hasn’t been identified.
Spirit Lake Fire Chief Pat Daly says a blast in the plant’s paint room caused the fire. The damage was contained there. It’s unclear what caused the explosion.
Polaris employs about 500 people at the plant, producing motorcycles under the Indian Motorcycles brand.



Auditors Question Whether Long Grove City Employee Actually Worked The Hours Claimed

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – State auditors say a man employed full time by an eastern Iowa city and a nearby water and sanitary district likely didn’t put in his 40 hours at both jobs and spent hundreds of working hours at casinos.
An audit report issued Tuesday cited more than $290,000 in unsupported or improper spending by the city of Long Grove and nearly $287,000 in unsupported or improper spending by the Park View Water and Sanitary District.
The two had asked for the special audit, concerned about the financial activities of Joel McCubbin. Long Grove hired him in 1987 and the district made him its full-time operations manager in 1994.
The auditors estimated the district overpaid McCubbin thousands of dollars because he probably only worked 24 a week.
The auditors also said a comparison of city time sheets against
McCubbin’s players club cards showed he was at casinos during his reported work hours on nearly 220 days.
Associated Press efforts to reach McCubbin were unsuccessful. Scott County court records don’t show that he’s been charged with any crime.



Des Moines Police Acquire Machine To Help Solve Gun Related Crimes

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Des Moines police have installed a machine that officials say will help detectives solve gun crimes faster.
Officials said at a news conference Monday that the Des Moines department is the first in Iowa to install an in-house system that analyzes and matches shell casings to firearms. The machine accesses a federally run ballistic imaging network.
Department Chief Dana Wingert says it can take months for the state crime lab to return testing results. His detectives now hope to get their own results in 24 to 48 hours – a key time frame when investigating gun crimes.
Des Moines police plan to use the machine for neighboring departments as well.
The Des Moines Register reports that a federal grant provided money for the machine.



Vinton Man Charged After Shooting At Police Officers

VINTON, Iowa (AP) – A Vinton man who authorities say fired a gun toward officers has been charged with three crimes.
The Iowa Public Safety Department says 43-year-old Lyle Fowler on Friday shot toward officers sent to check his welfare. The two officers fired back, but no one was wounded in the exchange.
The department says the officers were Sgt. Benjamin Parmater and Patrol Officer Katlyn Schimerowski of the Vinton Police Department.
Benton County court records say Fowler is charged with two counts of armed assault on a peace officer, two counts of interference with official acts and two counts of going armed with intent. His attorney didn’t immediately return a call Tuesday from The Associated Press.
Fowler’s preliminary hearing is scheduled for Sept. 18.



Steam Leak Kills University of Northern Iowa Maintenance Employee

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (AP) – A steam leak at a University of Northern Iowa dining hall has killed a maintenance worker.
The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports the employee died Monday morning while working on malfunctioning equipment at the Rialto dining center on the Cedar Falls campus.
University spokesman Aaron Clingingsmith says 61-year-old Kevin J. Bley died from injuries he received while testing a steam distribution service, which heats water for the center’s dining service. The dining hall had been closed since last week because of problems and was being brought back online.
No one else was injured.