Home News Thursday News, December 2nd

Thursday News, December 2nd


Le Mars Fire And Rescue Issues November Monthly Report

(Le Mars) — Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department has issued its monthly report for November.  During the past month, firefighters responded to 26 calls consisting of both fires and accidents.  The EMS side responded to 104 calls of which 73 calls were 911 emergency calls, and 31 calls were transfers, nine of those transfers were to Sioux Falls.  The full-time duty staff responded to eight calls consisting of investigations of odors, illegal burning, alarms, and etc.  Twice the Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department were called for special operation calls for confined space or hazardous materials.  The local fire and rescue operations had 12 requests for services including programs, talks, filling SCBA air tanks, agency assists, classes, fire drills, evacuation drills, and storm siren testing.  The total number of calls for November was at 152 calls.




City Extends The Dates For Grass, Leaf, Twig, and Branch Disposal Site

(Le Mars) — City officials have decided to extend the dates for the city’s grass, leaf, twig, and branch disposal site.  It will remain open for this coming Saturday, December 4th, and next Wednesday, December 8th, and the following Saturday, December 11th.  The hours remain the same.  Wednesday is from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  The disposal site is located on the west side of town near the Riverside ballparks.




Le Mars Community Schools Having To Focus On Grief Counseling Following Fatal Accident Involving Franklin Elementary Student

(Le Mars) — Tragedy struck the Le Mars Community when it was learned that a ten-year old student of Franklin Elementary School was the victim of a fatal traffic accident Tuesday afternoon.  The shock of knowing a young child’s life has been cut short affects most all of us, but it especially is emotional for students, teachers, and school officials, particularly for those who knew the student and the family.  As a result of the tragic deadly accident, Le Mars Community Schools had counselors available at the schools to help the students and staff deal with their grief.  School superintendent, Dr. Steven Webner explains the program.

Webner acknowledges that after a serious event such as the fatal accident, the school day is anything but normal activity.  However, he says guidance counselors and teachers try to visit with the students, and attempt to have students busy with activities.

Webner continues to discuss the emotional support system available for students and the entire school district.

In addition to the school’s guidance counselors, additional assistance is available and can be provided by Plains Area Mental Health and the Northwest Iowa Area Education Agency.

Webner says the special counseling will go on as long as it is needed.  He adds that every child is different.  Webner says the school administration and faculty and staff wants to express its sympathy and thoughts go to the grieving family.




Le Mars Christmas Lighted Parade Scheduled For Saturday

(Le Mars) — The annual Le Mars Christmas Lighted Parade is scheduled for this coming Saturday, and organizers say this year’s parade will feature additional floats and entries.  Joel Johnson serves as the coordinator of the lighted parade.

Johnson says he can’t recall when exactly the lighted Christmas parade first started in Le Mars, but he says a group of gentlemen created the idea, and it has been an annual event for the last few decades.  He says there will be some new entries as well as many of the traditional favorite floats associated with the parade.

Johnson says everyone is welcome to participate in the lighted Christmas parade, as there isn’t any entry fee.  He says a few new rules have been implemented for parade participants.

Johnson wants to invite the entire community to come out Saturday evening to view the parade.  He says since COVID prevented having the parade last year, he is expecting a good crowd for this year.




COVID-19 Hospitalizations Up 14 % in Iowa

(Des Moines, IA)  —  State health officials are reporting a 14-percent increase this past week in the number of COVID patients in Iowa hospitals.  The Iowa Department of Public Health’s website shows the number of patients hospitalized with the virus Wednesday morning is 721.  Nearly 24 percent of those patients are in intensive care units.  This is the fourth straight week Iowa hospitals are reporting an increase in the number of COVID.  The state’s data indicates 69 percent of Iowa adults are fully vaccinated while 72 percent of Iowans age 12 and up have had at least dose of COVID vaccine.




Council Bluffs High School Teacher Accused Of Leaving Threatening Notes At School

(Council Bluffs, IA)  —  A teacher at Abraham Lincoln High School in Council Bluffs is accused of leaving notes threatening gun violence at the school.  Thirty-seven-year-old Katrina Phelan confirms the handwriting on the four notes is hers, but she says she doesn’t remember writing them.  The notes were found in Phelan’s classroom or by the teacher herself.  Investigators say she apparently had no intention or means of carrying out the threats.  She told detectives she may have written the notes to bring attention to the fact the school isn’t a safe place.




Incident Outside City Hall Results In Arrest Of Boone Arts Commission Member

(Boone, IA)  —  An incident outside City Hall has resulted in the arrest of a member of the Boone Arts Commission.  Fifty-four-year-old Amy Rasmussen faces five charges including assault, harassment, and disorderly conduct.  She spent the night in the Boone County Jail and was released on bond Tuesday.  Boone police responded to a report of a fight Monday at 8:00 p-m.  Rasmussen admitted “getting into a physical altercation” with three other women who serve on city commissions or the city council.  A preliminary hearing for her has been scheduled for next week.




New Beef Processing Plant Coming To Southwestern Iowa

(Council Bluffs, IA)  —  A southwest Iowa company has hired a Wisconsin company to design its proposed 500-thousand square foot beef processing plant. Cattlemen’s Heritage lead developer, Chad Tentinger (Tent-ing-ger), says the plant will be built in northern Mills County.  “A couple of things that will be different — from the front of it, it won’t look like a processing plant — it will look like an office building. Design is very important to us,” according to Tentinger. “It’ll also have state-of-the-art equipment in it. A lot of new equipment that maybe wasn’t available five years ago.”   He says the design process will take several months. The plant is expected to employ 750 people and should process 15-hundred head of cattle each day.




Iowa State AD Pollard Diagnosed With Testicular Cancer

(Ames, IA)  —  Iowa State University athletics director Jamie Pollard is battling testicular cancer.  Pollard disclosed his diagnosis in a letter to Cyclone fans.  He says the cancer was discovered after he had some groin pain four weeks ago following a running workout.  Pollard revealed that he had surgery to remove his right testicle last Tuesday.  He says they found out the following day it was cancerous.  A follow-up appointment determined the cancer had not spread from the original site and his bloodwork was normal.  Pollard wrote, “I hope that I have limited the extent of my cancer through early detection and treatment.”




2 National Finalists for $1 Million New Year’s Powerball Drawing From Iowa

(Clive, IA)  —  Two of the five national finalists for a one-million-dollar New Year’s Powerball prize drawing are from Iowa.  Lottery spokesperson May Neubauer says it’s the third year for the ‘Powerball First Millionaire of the Year’ promotion.  She notes Iowa has never had a finalist and no state has ever had more than one.  One finalist is Rob Long of Waterloo who buys tickets for a pool of his co-workers, friends, and family who call the group Lotto 22.  Shari Beenken from the small Kossuth County town of Titonka is the other finalist.  Beenken and Long had to keep the news from others until today (Wednesday).  They each have already won ten-thousand dollars in cash and a ten-thousand-dollar home entertainment package.  Players had to enter non-winning tickets to get a chance at the New Year’s drawing.