January 20th - 26th, 2020
Monday, January 20th
Tuesday, January 21st
Free promoting and propagating heirloom seeds and plants class. Class begins at 6:30 p.m. in the Clinton County Youth Building.
Wednesday, January 22nd
Free “Living a Healthy Life” workshop at the Betty Brazelton Center, 707 Oak St., Lathrop, from 10 a.m. - noon. Pre-registration is required. Call Micky at 816-368-8816 to register.
Thursday, January 23rd
Friday, January 24th
Saturday, January 25
Receive Farm Management Awards
Left to right: Albert Pease Wesley Norton, Ronald Adam, Irene Adam and Scott Adam.
Mr. and Mrs. Ronald Adam and Mr. and Mrs. Wesley Norton were recipients of the 1969 County Farm Management Awards. They were selected from several applicants by a local committee in late summer.
Presenting the awards was Mr. Albert Pease, manager Agribusiness Department, Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, who act as sponsor of this program for western Missouri.
The Adam and Norton families were chosen for their achievements and progress both on and off the farm. They would be the first to remind us that they haven’t reached some “utopia” in farming, but they have made achievements in agriculture through planning, record keeping and soil erosion control.
The awards were presented at the 45th annual Soils and Crops Conference.
SGT. GETS AN EAST BUCHANAN BULLDOG SHIRT...Sgt. Overfelt of the Mo. Highway patrol was honored and thanked for his leadership in the D.A.R.E. program to the 5th grade students at East Buchanan. Principal Miller, left presented the gift.
WHAT DRUGS MEAN TO ME...Three 5th graders spoke to the D.A.R.E. graduation crowd last Friday in the East Buchanan gym. Those students were Brad Jackson, Jenny Smith and Phillip Weaver. Forty-seven 5th graders received diplomas for their participation in the drug abuse program.
5th Graders Graduate D.A.R.E. Program
The students of East Buchanan 5th grade, their teachers Nancy Clark, Roberta Deremer and Donna Elliott and Elementary Principal Paul J. Miller participated in graduation ceremonies in the E.B. Gym last Friday.
They were one of only nine schools in the state to qualify in the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program. Sgt. Greg Overfelt of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, Troop H was the D.A.R.E. information office who led the students through this important program.
Brad Jackson, Jenny Smith and Phillip Weaver were chosen by their classmates to give their personal commitments to the drug program. Each student received a diploma issued by Superintendent of School Roger Adamson and St. Overfelt.
The featured speaker for the event was State Senator Pat Danner of the 12th District.
Following the program, refreshments were served in the elementary gym.
The East Buchanan Bulldogs took home the hardware in the 2010 Bill Burns Classic basketball tournament, winning the championship over the North Platte Panthers on Saturday, January 16. The Bulldogs celebrate with their crowd, hoisting the trophy high.
Auditor finds special road district is doing its duty
PRESS RELEASE • Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway released a follow-up report Tuesday, January 14, to her audit of the Plattsburg Special Road District, located in Clinton County. After the audit found former district secretary and treasurer Ava Langner misappropriated more than $286,000, federal authorities charged her with stealing. The follow-up review examined progress the district board has made in implementing recommendations from the audit, which gave a rating of “poor.”
The follow-up review found that of the ten recommendations contained in the audit, the district board has implemented five, partially implemented another two, and is in progress on implementing the other three. The follow-up review found the board is now working to improve oversight of funds. Those changes include conducting reviews of accounting records and checks before approving disbursements. The board is also working to improve processes related to the receipt of funds.The full follow-up can be found on the state auditor’s website.
“A call to our Whistleblower Hotline led to the audit that uncovered a seven-year history of a public official using hundreds of thousands of dollars in taxpayer money to pay personal credit card bills and benefit her provate business,” Auditor Galloway said. “While the district board has put into place several of the audit recommendations, I urge them to fully implement all the recommendations in order to safeguard public funds and restore the trust of citizens.”
The 2019 audit found that the improper payments from the district’s account to Langner and her company began shortly after she was appointed in 2011 to handle bookkeeping for the district. The payments grew to more than $50,000 a year and totaled more than $156,000 before she was fired by the district board in October 2018. Over the same period, Langner made more than $125,000 in electronic payments from district funds to pay her personal credit card bills. As recommended by the audit, the board continues to work with law enforcement on criminal prosecution of Langner. The board has also increased its insurance against certain financial crimes.
The audit determined that Langner falsified financial statements to hide some of her misappropriations. She also may have created or modified other official records even after she had been fired from the district and the State Auditor’s Office had served her with a subpoena for the documents.
January 13th-19th, 2020
Galvanized Ganders At Trimble
No...it’s not Saturday night washup time at the goosery. Just a Canada maxima trying to raise a family in a Trimble Wildlife Area high-rise goose apartment.
Geese normally are thought of as ground nesters and they are in the Canadian barrens where there isn’t much else but ground. In Missouri, the birds readily accept elevated nests. Some geese have adopted osprey nests and goslings have fallen 80 feet out of nests onto a graveled stream bank without damage.
Many Canada geese will not nest in latitudes as low as Missouri. But the Giant Canadas seem to like it here. The Canada goose population which, Missouri hunters see each fall nests on the southwest shore of Hudson Bay, Canada. When the department moved birds from Trimble to Schell-Osage to try to establish a flock, there was fear the birds would home back to Trimble, but they didn’t. And they took to tubs quickly, even though they never had nested in tubs.
Kansas City 2-A All District
Congratulations to Kansas City Class 2-A All District selections for 1989 season for the East Buchanan Bulldogs. Second team selections were Kris Kelsey at offensive tackle and Cory Clark at defensive back. This is an outstanding honor for these young men, and we are proud of their accomplishments for this season.
Winter refuses to release its chilling grip on Clinton County
Plattsburg’s northern water tower resembled a big icicle as a result of the recent winter blizzard that struck the Midwest the past few weeks. Plattsburg City Administrator DJ Gehrt said that residents shouldn’t be concerned about the water supply since the tower is mainly used for storage. He also added that there are a couple of theories regarding the cause of the freezing water on the tower.
“We know that the freezing was not caused by an overflow.” said Administrator Gehrt. “Most likely the freezing was caused by the snow hitting the tower and melting as a result of the warm water inside. Then as it dripped down the surface it re-froze. The second theory is that we have a cracked panel, but that is less likely.”
Mr. Gehrt said that the City would be placing safety barriers around the tower to keep folks back as the weather warms.
“Our biggest concern is safety and the potential damage to the County’s communication shed beneath the tower once the ice begins to melt,” said Gehrt. “If it gets windy we might have to close part of 7th Street, but that is unlikely.”
The Regional Arthritis Center and Northwest Missouri Area Agency on Aging will be offering a free Living a Healthy Life workshop in Lathrop. Living a Healthy Life is a Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP) for adults living with a chronic condition, such as heart disease, diabetes, fibromyalgia, chronic pain, arthritis, and other chronic conditions.
CDSMP is an evidence-based health program developed by Stanford University with proven results based on rigorous study and scientific evidence. Some of the program goals include improving your knowledge of living a healthy life with a chronic condition, identifying and learning the latest pain management approaches, learning to manage fatigue and stress more effectively, finding solutions to problems caused by your condition, understanding the role of exercise and nutrition in chronic disease self-management, learning how to form a partnership with your health care team, and more.
Participants will also receive a free “Living a Healthy Life with Chronic Conditions” workbook and relaxation CD.
This six-week workshop will be held at the Betty Brazelton Center, 707 Oak Street in Lathrop, on Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to noon. Classes begin January 22 and will conclude February 26. Class size is limited, so pre-registration is required. You may sign up by calling Micky Bates, NWMOAAA Health Coordinator, (816) 368-8816, or email firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact Karen Dreyer with Arthritis Community Services, (816) 271-7057.
The Final Chapters of 2019
Clinton County says goodbye to the decade with titles, tears and historic moves.
As we do each year, The Clinton County Leader is looking back at the headlines that made history in 2019. Last week, we tackled the first half of the decade’s last year. This week, we’ll be reviewing the headlines from July through December (by newspaper issue date).
Don and Janette Lile serve as Grand Marshals of the Plattsburg Fall Festival Parade.
Lathrop football beats Maryville to end Spoofhounds’ home winning streak.
East Buchanan softball wins a district championship.
Norm Stewart speaks at the Iba Family Court dedication banquet.
County finishes 2019 in the black, carries $264k into the new year
Clinton County will enter 2020 on a financial upswing, not only finishing the past year in the black, but actually rebuilding its reserves.
Though the official final numbers weren’t available Thursday, January 2, the Clinton County Commissioners projected that they had finished 2019 approximately $264,000 in the black in the General Revenue budget.
That’s a far cry from how the county finished 2018. Last year, the commissioners had to borrow $51,000 from the county road and bridge fund just to make it through December, as the county had $135,482 in general bills and payroll against approximately $84,000 cash on hand. That was after the county had already spent its emergency reserve.
Clinton County ended 2017 with just $9,717 remaining in the General Revenue fund. And that was a year after the county ended 2016 with just over $500,000 in the General Revenue fund.
Though the county will have some additional funds at their disposal this year, the Clinton County Commissioners said they’ll continue with the tight financial oversight that corrected their course in 2019.
“It feels great to end the year in the black,” said Presiding Commissioner Pat Clark. “We plan to continue building off of that. We’ll still continue to monitor budgets for each office, the expenditures, and try to plan for some of those expenditures instead of going right out and getting them.”
“It’s a good thing that we’re in the black instead of the red,” added First District Commissioner Gary McCrea. “That’s new and unique. But that still doesn’t mean that the county is flush, because we are not. Our economic outlook is still bleak.”
Second District Commissioner Larry King just wrapped up his 15th year in office and said 2018 was the worst, financially, during his tenure, insinuating that though they have money in the bank, that doesn’t mean their financial situation has been solved.
“Just because we came out in the black with money left over, I still have the belief that if you’re going to spend $5 you need to have $10 in our pockets,” King said. After coming in over budget in recent years, the Clinton County Sheriff’s Department collectively stayed under budget in 2019. Both the sheriff’s operation budget and jail budget were in the black, while the dispatch area came in over budget.
BY CLINT DYE | LEADER REPORTER
Every high school football season in Missouri, only a handful of coaching staffs get the chance to coach their teams into the month of December, earning a spot in the state championship game of their respective classes.
Competing for a state title is the goal that every coach, no matter the size of the school, wants to attain and one that doesn’t come easily. For some, it never happens.
This past season, Odessa High School defensive coordinator Jeremy Helton helped lead the Bulldogs to their first state championship since 1994. Being part of a state championship game wasn’t entirely new to Helton. His first taste of high school football at the state championship level came as a player when he was part of the 1992 Plattsburg team that finished as the state runner-up that year.
Playing for a state title was a goal he and his teammates wanted to achieve throughout their high school careers.
“That was one of the greatest experiences of my life,” Helton said. “Our only goal was to go and win a state championship. It really drove us all, but we came up short. That is how I now approach coaching football. Winning a state championship is the ultimate goal. It may not be realistic with every team, but if that’s not your goal then I don’t understand what would drive you. It’s what drives me.”
After graduating high school in 1994, Helton attended college at the University of Central Missouri, receiving his degree in history. Once out of college, he returned to Plattsburg in 1998 for his first assistant coaching job under another Plattsburg alumni, Greg Smith.
“I was glad to get the experience at Plattsburg. If I hadn’t done that then I probably wouldn’t have continued coaching long term,” Helton said. “It was a lot of fun coaching in a community where you know all the relatives of the players or had known a kid since they were really young. It was a great experience.”
Helton’s next step in his coaching career led him to Kearney High School, where he was a part of two state championship teams in 2002 and 2003. While at Kearney, he was an assistant to current Odessa head coach Mark Thomas. It was during their first stint together that Thomas was impressed with the competitive drive Helton had for the game of football.
“Jeremy is very passionate about the game. I never saw him play but my guess is he coaches very similar to how he played,” Thomas said. “Intense, emotional, intelligent, focused, fearless, tough, committed, determined, never give up. All of those characteristics describe Jeremy Helton.”
Even more impressive to Thomas was Helton’s relationships with his players.
“Jeremy deeply cares and loves his guys, his players, and they know it,” Thomas said. “He doesn’t have to tell them because he shows them every day. He protects them, nurtures them, and pushes them to get as much out of them that he can.”
After his time at Kearney, Helton took a five-year hiatus from coaching. During his time away, he owned Bert and Ernie’s restaurant in Plattsburg. His return to the gridiron came in 2008 when he served as defensive coordinator for Andy McNeely at Plattsburg.
Helton’s only year as a head coach came in 2009 when he led the football program at Charleston, Missouri. Eventually he found his way to Richmond, where he won a third state championship in 2010 working as the special teams and defensive backs coach.
While in Richmond, Helton coached under Rob Bowers, making this the third Missouri Football Coaches Association (MFCA) Hall of Fame inductee he had the opportunity to work with, the first two being Greg Smith and Mark Thomas.
“It’s huge to me that I have worked for some really great head coaches,” Helton said. “I’ve worked for three hall of fame coaches and have been pretty fortunate in that situation. All three of them had a big impact on my career. I’m pretty picky with who I am willing to work for. I’m not willing to work for just anybody. It’s too important to me.”
A two-year stint at Belton High School reunited Helton with Mark Thomas before the two eventually made their way to Odessa and brought the Bulldogs their first state championship in 25 years.
“Jeremy can bring to your staff whatever you need. All you have to do is ask him and you can count on it being done and done well,” Thomas said when asked about his time at three programs with Coach Helton. “Jeremy and I are cut from the same cloth. If you are going to do something, you do it right and you do it to the best of your ability. If you are not willing to do it that way, which is the right way, then don’t bother doing it at all.”
With almost two decades of coaching under his belt and four state championships, Jeremy Helton has seen his fair share of success. Even with that level of success, the most important thing to Coach Helton continues to be the bond he has with his players and the impact he has on their lives.
“When you coach somebody, you get to know them on an entirely different level,” Helton said. “We spend so much time with our players that you get to know each other really well – the good, the bad and the ugly. I don’t have kids of my own, and I am kind of at that age now where the kids that I coach are my kids.”
Photo courtesy of Kory Hales | The Odessan
Let’s Go Missouri
Mark Frederic Sturgess, son of Rev. and Mrs. Don Sturgess, sports a M. U. sweat shirt. The shirt was a gift from his brother John, who is a student at Missouri University.
TRADITION CONTINUES...(with some help). Each New Year’s Day, Charlie Hoskins fires his shotgun to officially begin the year of golf for the new year. Due to a sore right shoulder, Charlie performed his duties with some assistance. Shown above, kneeling, Don Foland, Charlie Hoskins, Skip Tinnen and official over-see-er J.C. Ketchem.
The Clinton County Commissioners began the 2010 budget hearings on Tuesday, January 5. (Above) L to R – First District Commissioner Charlie Dawson, County Clerk Mary Blanton, County Emergency Management Director Blair Shock, Second District Commissioner Larry King and Presiding Commissioner Randall Relford crunch the numbers on the Emergency Management budget.
Tinsel Tastes Good To Dee Ann Strong.
Dee Ann Strong, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Jon Strong, was one year old the 24th of November. Just the right age to pull the tinsel from the tree and break a few ornaments. She has three brothers, Randy, Jon Jr., and Greg, and one sister Sandy who keeps her informed about Santa Claus and from un-doing packages before Christmas.
The Camera Interests Twins More Than Gifts
Gifts will come in pairs at the Cliff Linthicum household this year for the identical twin daughters, Leasa and Treasa. The girls are eighteen months old, so Christmas is still a mystery, as well as Santa Claus.
Gower Decorating Contest
LIGHTING WINNERS...The Ronald Barton house at 305 Gregory Drive won the Christmas home decorating contest in Gower. The contest was sponsored by the EB FFA.
SECOND PLACE...The home of Kathy Wolfe at 408 Clearview in Gower won second place in the Christmas home decorating contest. The contest was sponsored by the EB FFA.
Plattsburg decorating contest winners announced
For the second year in a row, The Wooden Dove took first place in the Business Christmas Decoration Contest, sponsored by “plattsburgmo.com”. Although web voting in general was down quite a bit from last year, mass supporters of The Wooden Dove logged on to the website to show their support, beating out their competition by nearly 70 votes.
Coming in second place for the businesses was the Senior Center, with their display of deer and nostalgic toys and rounding out third place was the Clinton County Extension with a green garland and red bow display.
The Wooden Dove will be rewarded with a gift certificate for a spiral ham and their name will be engraved on the traveling plaque that will continue to be displayed in their store.
In the home decorating contest, the first place winner was Dan and Beth Shepherd, 517 E. Concord; second place when to Jack and Debra Gibson, 109 Carter and third place was filled by Darrell and Sylvia Conner, 6326 NW Bethany Church Road. Aside from bragging rights, the winners will also be given $50, $40 and $25 consecutively in Plattsburg Bucks.