2012: The Year in Review


A year of tragic endings and uplifting victories in Clinton County

January 12 – Budget requests from county office holders come in over projected revenues; Plattsburg’s Pamida store to become ShopKo; Judge rules in favor of state in Brooke Gray horse teeth-floating case; Travel Express demolished, slated for renovations.


January 19 – A stand-off between a Lathrop man and local police ends peacefully; Joe Trotter earns contract extension as Plattsburg Administrator; Lathrop residents to vote on $4 million water bond; Topeka fire truck finds new home in Plattsburg.


January 26 – Lathrop mourns the passing of beloved educator Bill Burns; County investigates shooting in rural Plattsburg; Sen. Roy Blunt visits Cameron Regional Medical Center.


February 2 – Crime rates in both Plattsburg and Lathrop on the downturn; Charges reduced from murder to manslaughter in Richard Dale Vardy shooting case; Plattsburg council approved plans for new Dollar General, skate park;


February 9. – Retired Plattsburg teacher Don Pelzel shares his life story with Leader Readers; Proposed wedding facility in rural Clinton County is sidelined by court action.


February 16 – Lathrop schools will continue four-day school week; Two Independence, Mo. men die in plane crash near Shatto Dairy on Highway 33; Lathrop wrestling wins program’s first district title.

February 23 – Clinton County R-III cuts $550,000 from annual budget, decides against four-day week; Deadly accidents force state to review intersection of Highway 116 and Highway 69; City of Plattsburg to begin planned improvements on water system; Lathrop’s Tyler Berg wins second state wrestling title, Mules place 3rd as a team.


March 1 – CCR-III board delays contract extension for Supt. Stucker; Andy McNeely resigns as PHS football coach after taking on CCMS principal, activities director duties; Lady Tigers beat Lady Mules, Mules beat Tigers in district basketball.


March 8 – Police cases involving juveniles triples in Clinton County; Lathrop’s Jim Crenshaw files for State Rep. seat; Sixth-seed Lady Tigers play the part of Cinderella, take second in District 16.


March 15 – CCR-III avoids further budget cuts; The Leader launches new website; Dollar General announces store coming to Gower; Dr. James Neely announces he’s running for State Rep.


March 22 – Amid contentious debate, Clinton County Republicans leave delegates unbound to any certain candidate; Plattsburg Police Sgt. Larry Jackson honored for saving the life of a fellow officer; CCR3 votes to keep maintenance, technology services in house; Charles Shoemaker and Jerry Hoskins named veterans of the month.


March 29 – Clinton County R-III approves extension for Supt. Stucker, cuts staff; Plattsburg’s Glenn Gibson member of team that sends rover to Mars; Candidates vying for CCR-III school board attend Tinnen Publishing’s candidate forum; Local track teams begin the spring sports season.


April 5 – Dave Schauer wins second term as Plattsburg Mayor; Lathrop voters approve $4 million water infrastructure bond; Lathrop High School takes proactive measures in addressing downturn in graduation rates; Lathrop, Clinton County to be prime viewing area for 2017 total eclipse.


April 12 – High bids keep Lathrop downtown improvements project from fruition; Clinton County honors its dispatchers; Benefit dinner helps Lathrop volunteer Coetta Whiteley; Despite wet weather, local Easter celebrations go as planned.


April 19 – Derek Wilson named new Plattsburg football coach, Danny Knapp named Ellis principal; Plattsburg’s Gordon Gengelbach honored with Plattsburg Chamber’s lifetime support award; Construction continues on new Trex Mart in Lathrop; Lathrop Council hears proposal for beer garden at annual Friendship Festival; Paradise Locker picks up national awards; Lathrop’s Tyler Berg signs to wrestle at University of Missouri.


April 26 – City of Plattsburg purchases MoDOT building; Engineering costs threaten Lathrop’s city budget; Jim Banks retires from the Clinton County Sheriff’s Department; Plattsburg Chamber Awards: Volunteers of the Year – Lou and Berdyna Proctor, Business of the Year – Oakridge of Plattsburg, Organization of the Year – Ministerial Alliance, Clinton County Middle School Teacher of the Year – Lisa Owen, Ellis Elementary Teacher of the Year – Reanne Worland, Plattsburg High School Teacher of the Year – Helen Whitely, Ellis Student of the Year – Christopher Collins, CCMS Student of the Year – Tanner Bahora, PHS Student of the Year – Melissa Querrey; Plattsburg baseball comes back to beat Lathrop in a wild one.


May 3 – Accident claims the life of 2010 Lathrop grad Mat Tucker; Juvenile arrested in connection with rash of thefts in Plattsburg; Lathrop Mules win KCI Conference track championship; Charges dropped against Richard Dale Vardy in January shooting in rural Plattsburg; Terry Small and Ashlyn Stevens are named PHS Prom King and Queen; Camille Rounds and Collin Haahr are named LHS Prom Queen and King.


May 10 – Local law enforcement collect 233 lbs. of prescription meds in drug take-back effort; Plattsburg hosts Special Olympics; Mike and Toni Shrewsbury receive Monsanto grant, dedicate the $2,500 to LHS FFA; Construction continues on Plattsburg Dollar General store.


May 17 – Deadly accidents force the installation of warning lights at the intersection of Highway 116 and Highway 69 in Eastern Clinton County; Planned improvements to Plattsburg’s Birch Street are set to begin; Plattsburg PD arrests three in connection with vandalism at Plattsburg Country Club; Plattsburg’s Dirk Talley is honored for his service to the Clinton County Soil and Water Conservation District.


May 24 – Judge reverses decision of the county, deems permit for wedding facility near Trimble insufficient; The Defreece and Sons Cabinet Shop in Plattsburg catches fire the first time; Pat Huffman leaves legacy nursing at KU; The race between Clinton County Prosecutor Bill Burris and Judge Brent Elliott for 43rd Judicial Circuit Judgeship heats up; Mrs. Ausmus retires as Plattsburg principal; Lathrop Mules pole vaulters take three of the top five spots at state.


May 31 – Lathrop Police Chief Leonard Eads announces his plans to retire at the end of June; Plattsburg’s American Legion Post 97 shares its story with Leader Readers; Clint Hylton announced he’ll run for Missouri State Rep.;


June 7 – Cameron soldier Dalton Clemons, 20, seriously injured in IED blast while serving in Afghanistan; A drop-off in sales tax revenues doesn’t faze county officials; Clinton County Sheriff Porter Hensen features on the cover of The Missouri Sheriff; Father Jeff leaving St. Ann’s.


June 14 – Plattsburg pharmacy sold to Red Cross, Proctors retire; GRM to begin connecting Lathrop homes to high-speed fiber optic internet; Lathrop Rotary announces it is no longer pursuing a beer garden at the Friendship Festival;


June 21 – Lathrop woman Carol Thompson goes missing; Lou and Berdyna Proctor share their story with Leader Readers; Lathrop Antique Club needs younger members to keep tradition alive; Peggy Rapp announces retirement from FSA;


June 28 – Plattsburg photographer Keith Foster featured on Vogue website; More than 350 bikers rumble through the county for Janey’s Ride, raising $40,000; The Wall that Heals, a traveling tribute to Vietnam veterans, visits Lathrop; Massive budget cuts payoff as CCR-III doubles reserves in a single year; Big V in Smithville celebrates 50 years in the biz;


July 5 – Dry weather forces burn ban for Clinton County, Plattsburg fireworks postponed; Commission hears $5.7 million proposal for new county jail; City of Plattsburg announces utility rates may go up; Plattsburg’s Jacob Ward earns Eagle Scout honors; Lathrop R-II teachers, staff to receive pay increases; Shopko to hold grand opening in Plattsburg.


July 12 – Father Phillip Luebbert begins his service at St. Ann’s; Heat and below average rainfall begin to take toll on area farm crops; Reward increased in case of missing Lathrop, Mo. woman Carol Thompson; City of Plattsburg asks residents to conserve water; Area law enforcement officer Jason Rogers is transported home to Lathrop as he battles cancer; LHS cheerleaders Rebekah Knight and Miranda Sims are named All-American Cheerleaders by UCA.


July 19 – Clifford D. Miller, of Trimble, charged with the murder of Edgerton, Mo. sisters Brittany Haarup and Ashley Key; Shopko officially opens in Plattsburg; City of Plattsburg ups utility rates, water violation from May 2012 reported; Donald Mick sentenced to seven years for crash that killed Plattsburg’s Jerry Cheesman; Clinton County R-III adds high school cross country program;


July 29 – Peggy Rapp retires after four decades at Farm Services Agency; On word that the Westboro Baptist “Church” would picket the funerals of slain Edgerton sisters, counter-protestors fill the small Platte County town; Improvements along Birch Avenue complete, opened to the public; Candidates for Missouri’s Eighth District Representative debate the issues at public forum.


August 2 – Missy Scott named 2012 Lathrop Friendship Festival Queen; Leonard Eads named Lathrop Rotary Citizen of the Year; Rick and Doris Berry serve as Grand Marshals; Tinnen Publishing to sponsor documentary on the late Rep. Jerry Litton; First Lathrop resident connected to GRM’s high-speed fiber optic internet system.


August 9 – 2012 Primary Election: James T. Crenshaw def. Clint Hylton in State Rep. primary, Brent Elliott defeats Bill Burris in 43rd Judicial Democratic primary, I.D. Smith edges Bill Webb in 1st District Commissioner Democratic primary; Farmers dig in as lower-than-expected yields a certainty; The Kelley Flores Memorial Mexi-fest brings out a crowd.


August 16 – Shatto Milk back on store shelves after a brief shutdown; Recount likely in First District Democratic primary; Cindy Anderson retires as the Trimble postmaster; Sam Graves visits Cameron; Roxanne Pendleton named Pastor at Plattsburg First Christian Church; Lathrop R-II increases debt service levy in anticipation of increased payments for new high school.


August 23 – The Plattsburg Fall Festival kicks off after move from fall to August; Glen Garton named Lathrop Chief of Police; Plattsburg City Council looks to address downtown parking, antiquated Christmas decorations; Community raises money to replace sidewalk outside Plattsburg’s American Legion Post 97; Tinnen: “Akin best thing to happen to Democrats”; Cameron man and two children die in fire; National organization joins in search for Carol Thompson.


August 30 – Plattsburg Fall Festival: Whitney Perren named Festival Queen, Genice Read serves as Grand Marshall, Rev. Charles and Corbetta East named Chamber of Commerce Persons of the Year; Showers do little to chase off fire danger; Both Plattsburg and Lathrop begin the football season with victories; Lathrop’s Dan and Jane Snodgrass named Clunton County Farm Family at State Fair; Bill Webb’s request for recount dismissed in court.


September 6 – Clinton County Commission cuts property tax rate; Irish dignitaries visit Plattsburg, Lathrop R-II graduation rate plummets below 80 percent; Maligned Missouri Senatorial candidate Todd Akin makes a campaign stop in Plattsburg; Lathrop First Baptist Church files suit against city looking to resolve de-annexation dispute.


September 13 – Clinton County burn ban lifted; McGee Conservation Area opens to the public; Trex Mart in Lathrop prepares to open; Early-morning fire claims the life of a Lake Arrowhead resident; Brett Daffron wins the Plattsburg Country Club Championship.


September 20 – Stretch of Highway 116 to be named after fallen Lathrop soldier Issac Jackson; Downtown parking proving to be a challenge for City of Plattsburg; Akin makes another stop in Clinton County; Governor Jay Nixon to visit Cameron in October.


September 27 – Allegations leveled at Lathrop Senior Citizen Housing, Inc., James Crensahw; Charges in child abuse case against Plattsburg’s RaDawn Kelley increased from Class C to Class B felony; Lathrop football beats Lawson for the first time in 13 years; Lathrop Middle School puts iPads to work; The Clinton County Leader wins nine awards from Missouri Press Association’s 2012 Better Newspaper Contest.


October 4 – Sgt. Issac B. Jackson Memorial Highway, covering Highway 116 between Lathrop and Plattsburg, dedicated; Crash in Caldwell County sends five Clinton County residents to the hospital; Shannon Todd pleads guilty to voluntary manslaughter in 2011 killing at Turney’s Down Under Camp Resort; Three Lady Tigers golfers advance to sectionals.


October 11 – Lathrop senior Tyson May runs for over 200 yards and four touchdowns as the Mules beat Plattsburg for the first time since 2004; On their way to victories, Governor Jay Nixon, State Attorney General Chris Koster and Treasurer Clint Zweifel visit Cameron; Haleigh Oetting and Zach Shelton named 2012 PHS Homecoming King and Queen; Tinnen Publishing, Leader Readers raise $1,000 for Senior Center.


October 18 – Lathrop citizen Jim Eames passes away at 92; 90-year-old Clinton County twins Darleene Saunders and Alleene Keesaman share their story with Leader Readers; Lathrop Antique Club hosts its annual Living History Festival; County to faces revenue shortages by the end of the year; Enrollment increases force Lathrop R-II add another teacher; CCMS Principal Andy McNeely named Exemplary New Principal by school principals association.


October 25 – Holt, Mo. couple charged with murder in the death of four-year-old Lucas Webb; Lathrop seniors McKenzie Groves and Brandon Stimelsky named 2012 Homecoming Queen and King; David Eads to discontinue residential trash pick-up in Lathrop; Redgate to take over recycling in Plattsburg; Plattsburg football to play Lathrop in opening round of new district playoffs.


November 1 – Plattsburg’s Marti Riddle shares her ghost hunting experiences; Plattsburg’s Cam Collins honored for his service to Plattsburg football; Lathrop R-II enrollment sets record highs; Mules down Tigers in district football opener; LHS student Ali Hutchinson to compete in Miss Missouri Teen pageant; Lady Mules volleyball takes second in district tournament.


November 8 – 2012 General Election: Dr. James Neely beats James T. Crenshaw for Eighth District State Rep. seat, Sheriff Porter Hensen and Assessor Jerry Howard edge out Republican challengers; Lathrop Mules win district title; LHS alum Jesse Allen Gochenour dies in car accident; Vigil held for missing Lathrop woman Carol Thompson; Lathrop’s Clay Evans and Blake Vaughn, Plattsburg’s Trevor Jones, Wyatt Marsh and Ashton Lile qualify for state championship cross country meet.


November 15 – Clinton County R-III begins four-day week discussions; After roberry, Stewartsville food pantry soldiers on; Lathrop’s Donald Griffin spearheads flag project; Lathrop falls to Holden in the Missouri Class 2 Quarterfinals.


November 22 – The parents of the late Mackintyre McDill-Garton, the boy who wanted to build a church, share their story with Leader Readers; Shannon Todd sentenced to seven years for milling in Turney; Hy-Klas Foods donate 30 Thanksgiving dinners across the county; Flu bug forces Lathrop to shut down for a day.


November 29 – Parent group to research four-day school week for CCR-III, survey planned; City of Lathrop willing to de-annex First Baptist Church property; Plattsburg Community Christmas on the horizon; Trimble City Hall moves to Community Center; Former Ohio State player Joel Penton speaks to CCR-III students.


December 6 – Dearborn, Mo. couple win nearly $300 million in record lotto rake; Plattsbrug Community Christmas tradition grows with successful year; Shawn Griffin pleads guilty to second degree murder and armed criminal action, sentenced to 25 years.


December 13 – County revenues lag behind projections, commission dips into emergency funds; After nearly four decades, Larry Graham to retire from CenturyLink; Jackie Graham and the Lady Tigers take third in KCI Conference basketball tournament; Rep. Graves nominates Lathrop’s Brandon Maddick for Naval Academy; Plattsburg Tour of Churches draws a crowd; Bevy of toys, $2,500 raised in Hartzell and Sons’ toy drive.


December 20 – Three dead, including CCMS student, in apparent murder/suicide in northern Clay County; Community shares their thoughts on possible four-day at CCR-III; Lathrop Lady Mules upset Hamilton in basketball; Plattsburg students share artwork, letters to Santa.

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  1. Lathrop woman gone Missing Carol Thompson June 15, 2012 is the correct date that was reported to the police & when family was notified. June 21, 2012 isn’t correct in this article.. Thank you Judy Courtney-Carol Thompson Sister

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