Friday, May 26, 2017

SPORTS STORY>>Titans searching for quarterbacks

Leader sports editor

Jacksonville football got about 45 to 50 players out to spring practice the last few weeks. The number is in line with recent years, but disappointing compared to the number of students that participated in the offseason. Coach Barry Hickingbotham said about 73 total took part in the offseason program.

The upside is, the ones who remained are a hard-working group.

“I’ve got guys left that are competing and working extremely hard,” said Hickingbotham. “We’re replacing a whole lot and have a lot of things to figure out, but the guys are working hard to get there.”

Quarterback Harderrious Martin and running back Shawn Ellis are the two key offensive players coming back. Martin, however, is likely to share a lot of time under center as coaches work on other creative ways to involve the team’s most dynamic athlete in the offense.

Juniors Trey Newsome and Shavarious Curley, and sophomore Ardarius Haynes are competing for the backup quarterback position. Haynes was the starter for the Titan freshmen team last year.

Jacksonville played an unadvertised spring scrimmage last Friday. Hicking-botham says the results were mixed, about what he expected at this early stage.

“There were some good plays and some bad ones,” Hickingbotham said. “What I like about my guys competing for quarterback is that they’re trying hard to learn. Of course we’d start HD (Martin) if we had to play tomorrow. None of the other guys have separated themselves at this point, but I like the effort of all of them.”

Hickingbotham has a busier summer scheduled for the team this year. The team will be competing in 7-on-7 tournaments at Atkins and UA-Monticello, as well as hosting its own. That’s on top of a few full-contact team camps coaches are planning on attending.

“We’re going to keep working,” Hickingbotham said.

The JHS 7-on-7 tournament is scheduled for June 13 at Jan Crow Stadium.

More details will be forthcoming.

SPORTS STORY>>Jackrabbit football spends on helmets, players’ safety

Leader sports editor

The Lonoke High School football program recently became the first football program in Arkansas to take a hi-tech approach to monitoring their entire body of student athletes. The Jackrabbits adopted Riddell’s InSite Impact Response System – a head impact monitoring technology from the leading football helmet manufacturer – for the upcoming season.

Riddell InSite is a football helmet-based sensor technology that alerts sideline staff when a player experiences significant impacts during games and practices.

The latest software delivers more information about player head impacts, including the location of the impact. It also offers new training opportunities based on data trends by player, and highlights Lonoke High’s commitment to protecting its players not only through technique, but through technology.

“We believe we can keep our players safer with this new technology. Anytime we can become more aware of head injuries in our sport we should take that opportunity,” said Taggart Moore, Lonoke Senior High varsity football head coach. “Through teaching proper technique and our SpeedFlex helmets with InSite technology, we believe we can minimize head injuries for many seasons to come.”

InSite was developed based on Riddell’s Head Impact Telemetry System (HITS) and Sideline Response System (SRS), a technology that has analyzed more than 5 million impacts since 2003. This integrated technology fits into the liner of a Riddell helmet and is used to monitor players and alert the sideline to significant head impacts sustained during a football game or practice.

For instance, if a player collision sends an impact report score of 99, an indicator is automatically sent to a monitor (usually a team trainer) on the sideline. The same is true for a fifth impact score of 95. Furthermore, the metric can be adjusted by sideline monitors. Meaning the impact score that generates an automatic indicator can be lowered.

“Anything you can do to make a sport safer is a good idea,” said Lonoke athletic director Marc Sherrell. As Athletic Director, I see this type of helmet technology being the wave of the future in high school and college football. In Lonoke, we decided to be leaders in bringing about this technology rather than jumping on the train at a later date. We’re excited to give our student athletes the opportunity to use it.”

The Lonoke School District spent approximately $52,000 on 180 helmets for every player in grades 7-12. That’s roughly $290 per helmet, which is a bargain. Retail price for the SpeedFlex helmet is $399 for a single unit, while the impact monitoring system is another $150 per unit.

SPORTS STOR>>Lady Bear newcomer is soaring

Leader sports editor

Change might be the defining word for the first season of high school athletics for soon-to-be Sylvan Hills junior Mia Heard. She transferred to Sylvan Hills from Lisa Academy just before her sophomore year, delighting in moving to a school that actually has a track program, and she helped the Lady Bears with their first state championship in 13 years.

On top of moving to a different school and taking on a new level of competition, Heard was asked to take up a new event, the long jump. At the beginning, she didn’t want to.

By the end, she won the event in the Meet of Champions, where top performers from every classification come together to determine the best of the best.

“My first time doing it, I really didn’t want to because I thought it would be too much on my legs,” said Heard, who was already a top sprinter for her age group on Arkansas’ AAU circuit. “After I started doing it, it became one of my favorite events.”

Heard jumped a personal best 18 feet, two-inches at the MOC. Sylvan Hills coach Grover Garrison knew she had all the right tools to be a long jumper, and says it didn’t take a lot of convincing.

“She had some experience with the triple jump, so I told her we’re going to start teaching the long jump,” said Garrison. “Her response was, ‘I can’t long jump.’

“I’ve never heard of a kid with the speed, power and coordination to triple jump to be able to long jump. She didn’t show any other signs of not wanting to do it. Her first jump during indoor season was around 16-10. She won that meet with a 17-2 mark, I knew then we had something to work with.”

Heard, who is the daughter of WM Jr. and Tamika Heard, began competitive track when she was 9 years old with the Christian Competition Track Club, but she says high school competition was tougher due to having to compete not just with people her own age, but people two and sometimes three years older.

She continues AAU track, and will compete in her first summer meet today at UALR. Heard also competes in the 100-meter dash, the 200-meter dash, the 4x100-meter relay and the triple jump. She also ran the 4x400-meter relay in one meet this year.

But it’s the new one that she’s taking the greatest liking to.

“I feel like the long jump is becoming my best event,” Heard said. “I want to hopefully get it out to 19 (feet) next year.

Moving from coach to coach in different events, and then switching coaches altogether from AAU to high school can take its toll, but Heard has a calm approach.

“It’s a little different because everyone has a different coaching style,” Heard said. “One thing I learned I need to do is just focus on what this coach is telling me instead of getting confused about someone else saying something different. Sometimes I just try to follow what I think is best or what makes most sense to me.”

Heard said of all the coaches, Garrison is the most demanding, but there is an upside to that.

“He’s harder than the other ones,” Heard said of Garrison. “But the work has paid off. Winning the state championship is just more motivation. It’s been worth it. This team has been willing to work.”

The head Bear reciprocated.

“I noticed that she was very coachable and could grasp instructional concepts quite well,” Garrison said. “She emerged into a team captain in her first year, which is not common in our program. The exciting part about Mia’s development is that there’s plenty more to get. You will see even better jumps in the future.”

EDITORIAL>>Memorial Day celebrations

We first celebrated Memorial Day as a response to the unprecedented carnage of the Civil War, in which some 620,000 soldiers on both sides died. The loss of life and its effect on communities throughout the country led to spontaneous commemorations of the dead. Now it honors all fallen military members and the freedom we have because of them.

We use that freedom to travel (about 37 million of us will hit the road) and consume about 71 million hot dogs, or 818 per second, on Memorial Day. Most of those hot dogs, as well as burgers and steaks, will be grilled as close to 60 percent of us will fire up the old Weber.

And the barbeque sauce of choice will be hickory, followed by mesquite, honey and spicy-hot closing in quickly.

Memorial Day is a day that we should all remember that we are hot dog, barbecue-lovin’ Americans who view the holiday as the unofficial start of summer and will, between passing the mustard and ketchup, take time to honor our bothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, aunts and uncles who have made that ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.

For only one thing rings true on Memorial Day: Honoring the members of the armed forces who died protecting this country and our freedom.

Celebration events abound in Jacksonville, Sherwood, Cabot and Beebe this weekend.

The Jacksonville Museum of Military History, at 100 Veteran Circle, will hold a Heritage Day from 10 a.m. till 5 p.m. today. Admission is free.

A special exhibit on Arkansas’ role in World War I will be on display all day. It was created by the Arkansas State Archives to commemorate the centennial of the First World War.

There will be American and German re-enactors of World War II soldiers, live music. Free hot dogs and hamburgers will be served from 11:30 a.m. till 1 p.m.

The film “Injury Slight...Please Advise” will be shown at 1:30 p.m.

The Arkansas Department of Veteran Affairs will host the Central Arkansas Memorial Day Ceremony at 10 a.m. Monday at the Arkansas State Veterans Cemetery in Sherwood.

The ceremony will honor all who served in the armed forces and recognize the sacrifice of those who paid the ultimate price for our freedom and their families.

Because of limited space, visitors are asked to park at Sherwood Forest, 1111 W. Maryland Ave. Free shuttle buses will run continuously between Sherwood Forest and the cemetery from 8:30 to 9:55 a.m. Shuttle buses will resume after the service.

Right after the ceremony, the Arkansas Veterans Coalition and the VWF Auxiliary will host the annual picnic at Sherwood Forest.

The American Legion in Cabot will host its annual bell-ringing ceremony at 11 a.m. Monday at the Veterans Park Community Center.

The Beebe VFW Post 7769 will hold a Memorial Day ceremony at 11 a.m. Monday at the Veterans Memorial at West Dewitt Henry Drive. After the service, snacks will be served at the post at 1405 E. Center St.

Don’t let the patriotism parade pass you by.

TOP STORY>>Churches help vets memorial

Leader staff writer

The Beebe Ministerial Alliance and First Baptist Church of Beebe gave the city $2,000 at the city council meeting on Monday to repair the Veterans Memorial on West Dewitt Henry Drive.

High winds from a March thunderstorm toppled and broke two stone monuments.

The monoliths were etched with the names of local veterans who served in the military.

“We were saddened to hear of the destruction of the Veterans Memorial, and we wanted to make a contribution to rebuild the memorial,” said Ministerial Alliance president First Baptist Church Pastor Bob Hall.

Mayor Mike Robertson said the estimate for the new monuments is $16,000.

Parks director Lynn Hatcher spoke about $3,400 improvements at the parks.

Lunnie Park basketball court will be resurfaced and have two new goals. The Idaho Street park will have its half-court resurfaced and a basketball rim installed.

Fireman’s Park will be updated for younger children. Three basketball goals will be lowered to six feet.

“We don’t have anything for the little fellows to get started on the basketball court,” Hatcher said.

Fireman’s Park has a small play structure for the little kids. The mayor wants the park for children and their parents. It is often used for birthday parties. He said young adults use inappropriate language around children. Graffiti is written on the tables and trash is left on the ground. They can use the other parks that are more closely monitored.

The council passed a resolution to condemn the struc ture at 503 E. Oklahoma St. Code-enforcement officer Milton McCullar said no work was done to the house after a notice was issued to conform to code.

The council approved a moratorium on the condemnation of 103 N. Main St. New Life Church purchased the property and agreed to bring the building up to code within six months.

Aldermen approved the police department to purchase four used 2013 Dodge Charger police cars for $51,000 from the state of Missouri. They will replace aging police vehicles.

TOP STORY>>Area men charged in drug bust

Federal and local police Wednesday morning arrested dozens of accused drug and gun dealers in central Arkan-sas, including a Jack-sonville man and a former Jacksonville resident.

Christopher S. Newman Jr., 26, of Jacksonville has been charged with conspiracy and intent to distribute cocaine and use of a telephone to distribute drugs. Authorities seized $4,019 in drug proceeds.

John Webster Batton, 38, of Searcy, formerly of Jacksonville, was charged with conspiracy to distribute heroin.

They appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Patricia S. Harris on Friday and pleaded not guilty. They face five to 40 years in prison if convicted.

Wednesday’s operation culminated in an 18-month joint investigation into several drug-trafficking organizations, primarily in Little Rock.

The investigation was led by the FBI and Little Rock and North Little Rock police.

Twenty-five people were arrested —joining the 27 people indicted who were already in custody — while several individuals remain at large. Fifty of the 61 defendants are from Little Rock. Some defendants face 10 years to life in prison.

Agents seized more than two kilograms of cocaine, one kilogram of heroin, more than a pound each of crack cocaine and methamphetamine and eight ounces of fentanyl.

Arkansas State Police, National Guard and Pulaski County sheriff’s deputies assisted in the arrests.

In late 2015, the FBI and North Little Rock police began investigating the drug-trafficking activities of North Little Rock gangs. Investigators soon learned the gangs’ source of drugs came from individuals in Little Rock.

After several drug purchases, wiretaps and search warrants, FBI and Little Rock police identified more than 60 suspects.

Officers seized these drugs during more than 25 controlled purchases, as well as during the execution of multiple search warrants.

In addition, agents seized 25 guns and approximately $241,000 of drug proceeds.

The largest involved a 33-defendant, 67-count indictment alleging heroin and cocaine conspiracies, both headed by Aaron “Black” Clark, 33, of Little Rock.

TOP STORY>>Plans unveiled for next phase

Leader senior staff writer

About 150 people turned out Thursday at the Jacksonville Community Center to review and discuss plans with state Highway and Transportation Department specialists for widening Hwy. 67/167 from the Main Street overpass to the Vandenberg interchange — the last of a four-phase project from I-40 to state Hwy. 5 in Cabot.

The job would improve 2.25 miles of Hwy. 67/167, including interchange improvements at Main Street, James Street, Gregory Street and Vandenberg Boulevard at a cost of $122 million.

The work is slated to begin in 2019 and for completion in 2022.

The widening — from two lanes north and two south to three lanes each — began with the section from I-40, past McCain Boulevard and Kiehl Avenue to just south of Redmond Road and is complete.

The second phase, beginning at the Redmond Road interchange and running just north of the Main Street overpass, is well underway and should be done sometime next year.

Preliminary work has begun on the segment from north of Vandenberg to Cabot and the Thursday meeting was to discuss the final link — and perhaps the most challenging — from the Main Street overpass to the Vandenberg interchange.

The widening requires replacing bridges and overpasses along the way, changing the alignment of on- and off-ramps and the conversion of T.P. White and John Harden frontage roads between Main and Vandenberg to one-way frontage roads.

While there is still an opportunity for a little fine tuning, the alternatives have boiled down to “build” and “don’t build,” Danny Straessle, the highway department’s communications director said.


At this point the build alternative “includes system-wide improvements necessary to improve the traffic flow and safety of this corridor,” according to the department.

Without the work, congestion on the main sections of the highway is projected to rate “E” and “F” — the worst levels of service — by 2041 during morning and evening peak hours where passing is impossible and the slowest moving vehicle controls the travel speed. Most of the signalized study intersections are expected to operate at an overall level of service of “F” during the peak hours.

The build alternative would potentially require the relocation of three residential owner occupants, six businesses, and two business landlords, according to Highway Department documents.

“The six businesses impacted include an animal hospital, a nail salon, hair salon, tobacco shop, tax office, and a donut shop,” according to the report.

It would require purchase of approximately 19.2 acres of right of way from 129 properties and 11 relocations. Total residential and business relocation costs with the Build Alternative are estimated at $627,500 (in 2016 dollars).

The AHTD also has a new Hwy. 67/167 interchange programed at state Hwy. 5/321, just west of Cabot. 

$122.7M TOTAL

Construction costs in 2016 dollars for the Main Street through Vandenberg interchange is $89 million, plus $11.5 million in utility relocation costs and $22.2 million in right-of-way costs for a total of $122.7 million.

Work continues on replacing the two Main Street overpasses, the scene of many accidents including at least one death in recent years.

Congestion at the Vanden-berg interchange — the main gateway to the Little Rock Air Force Base should receive some relief by the 2022 completion of that final phase, according to Jacksonville Mayor Gary Fletcher.

A Texas turnaround under the highway will connect the two frontage roads and better traffic lights will help move traffic through that bottleneck, Fletcher said.

A left-turn signal for traffic from John Harden and Toneyville will help, as will better coordination and flow from North First Street and from T.P. White Drive.

Businesses are wary of the proposed changes, the mayor said, including motel owners.


“It’s not a perfect plan,” he said, alluding to what he called “the fear factor,” Fletcher said. They fear that one-way frontage roads will hurt business, but he said the same fears by businesses on frontage roads in the McMain Road were proven to be unfounded and that many new businesses have opened along those roads.

Fletcher said he was meeting with business owners and operators, including motel managers, later Friday.

He said he has issues with the sizing of some drainage culverts and placement of some on or off ramps.


The department will be accepting comments by mail, Attn. Jon Hetzel, 4701 Northshore Drive, North Little Rock, Ark. 72118 or by email Info@ConnectingArkansas until 4:30 p.m. June 9.

State Rep. Bob Johnson of Jacksonville, state Sen. Eddie Joe Williams and Cabot Alderman Douglas Warner were among the officials who joined Fletcher at the meeting.

The following changes can be viewed in annotated figures 9-12 at


Here are the changes on the Highway Department’s aerial photos:

Northbound — starting at Main Street, major changes include turning T.P. White Drive into a one-way frontage road all the way to Vanden-berg Boulevard; relocating the northbound off ramp to 2,000 feet south of James Street; relocate northbound on ramp to 450 feet south of James; north of James, T.P. White continues as a one-way frontage road.


Then north of James Street and North Bailey Street, a northbound off-ramp passes in front of Gwatney Chevrolet onto the frontage road, which then passes under a new Gregory Street overpass reconnecting the halves of Gregory Street.

The northbound on-ramp will be relocated north of Gregory Street from its current locations between James Street and Gregory Street. Then, north Second Street is extended to T.P. White Drive, which continues as the one-way northbound frontage road.

A dedicated turnaround lane from northbound T.P. White will pass under the existing Vandenberg Boule-vard overpass, merging onto the southbound one-way John Harden Drive frontage road.

Meanwhile, the T.P. White Drive approach at the intersection of Vandenberg and North First Street will be eliminated.

North of Vandenberg, T.P. White will be remain a two-way frontage road and north of Madden Road, a new northbound off ramp will be constructed at the existing location of the current on ramp.

Southbound — traffic can get off the improved ramp just north of Vandenberg Boulevard or else exit on the ramp between James and Gregory streets.


To get onto the southbound highway from Vanden-berg, traffic can use the on-ramp 1,700 feet south of Vandenberg.

Existing roadway will be modified to allow traffic from the Walmart Supercenter to intersect with Gregory Street, which would allow motorists to take the new Gregory Street overpass across the highway join North First Street.

The existing southbound on ramp will be removed. Southbound highway traffic can exit onto the one-way southbound John Harden frontage road 1,000 feet before James Street.

About 300 feet south of James Street overpass, highway traffic can exit in time for North Metro Medical Center.

The southbound onramp will be relocated 2,200 feet south of James.

Part of the existing phase I work, John Harden Drive will stop at Marshall Road at New China restaurant.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

OBITUARIES >> 5-27-17


Karen Leila Barker-Leavitt, 49, of Owasso, Okla., passed away May 20.

She was born a twin with her brother, Kevin Lynn Barker, to Ben and Ruby Barker on March 28, 1968.

Karen attended Owasso schools, where she played softball and the flute in the high school band.

Karen’s passion and delight were her family, friends and pets. She loved spending time with her grandson, Porter and her family, Jim, Casey and Zack.

She also loved to watch Nascar races. Karen grew up spending her free time fishing and loved being outdoors.

Karen was preceded in death by her son, Anthony Barker.

She is survived by her grandson, Porter Barker, and his mother, Sheri; sons, Casey and Zachary Leavitt; her husband and partner, Jim Leavitt; her brothers, Ben (Thelma) Barker III, Scott (Mary) Barker, and Kevin Barker; her parents, Ben and Ruby Barker, and she also leaves behind many loving relatives and friends.

Funeral services will be at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 28 at Moore’s Cabot Funeral Home. Visitation will be from 1 till 2 p.m. prior to the service. Interment will follow at Mount Pleasant Cemetery in Cabot.

Arrangements by Mowery Funeral Service in Owasso, Okla., and Moore’s Cabot Funeral Home, 501-843-5816. Sign the online guestbook at


Funeral services for Thomas Eugene Colvert, 73, of Branson, Mo., were held May 25 in the First Baptist Church of Forsyth, Mo., with Pastor Jeramie Henson officiating. Burial followed in the Ozarks Memorial Park Cemetery in Branson.

Services were under the direction of Snapp-Bearden Funeral Home and Crematory, Branson.

Mr. Colvert passed away on May 23.

Thomas was born Aug. 11, 1943, in North Little Rock to Carl and Elizabeth (Gilliam) Colvert.

He attended and graduated from Jacksonville High School. Thomas married Gilda Holt on Dec. 20, 1963, in Benton. They had celebrated 53 years together this past December. To this union they were blessed with three children.

Thomas worked for the Arkansas Louisiana Gas Company as a service tech and retired after 25 years.

He was a member of First Baptist Church in Jacksonville, and after moving to Branson was a member of the Forsyth First Baptist Church.

Thomas was a very devoted Arkansas Razorbacks fan.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Carl and Elizabeth “Betty Lou” Colvert, and one infant sister, Carol.

Thomas is survived by his loving wife, Gilda Colvert; one son, Jeff (Suzanne) Colvert; two daughters, Tommi (Harry) Kaelin and Karen (Scott) McCaulley; one sister, Peggy Hembree; a mother-in-law, Hazel Holt, all of Branson, Mo.; three grandchildren, Stephanie (Joey) Starke, Matthew Gambino and Katherine Colvert, and two great-grandsons, Peter and Benedict Starke.


Joyce J. Slaughter, a resident of Lumberton, Miss., for 26 years, entered eternal rest on May 12 at the age of 69.

Ms. Joyce was very proud to be a military wife and cherished each and every day. In her spare time she enjoyed doing arts and crafts projects. She was very talented at painting and writing.

Ms. Joyce was a very strong woman who had an infectious laugh that could brighten any dark day. She absolutely loved and adored her fur-babies and would take them traveling with her wherever she would go.

Ms. Joyce and her husband, Baxter, made several trips to Germany with their fur-babies. She had such a gentle and kind soul and would take in any stray animals that she came in contact with.

Funeral services were held at White Funeral Home in Poplarville, Miss., at 11 a.m. May 19. Visitation began two hours prior to service time. Interment followed at Biloxi National Cemetery in Biloxi, Miss.

An evening visitation at White Funeral Home was held from 6 until 9 p.m. on May 18.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Marvin and Bonnie Ivey, her step-mother, Lillian Ivey, and a sister, Beverly Ivey.

Ms. Joyce Slaughter leaves to cherish her memories to her husband of over 50 years, Baxter W. Slaughter; one brother, Terry Ivey and his wife Tami, her sweet fur-babies, a host of nieces, nephews and friends.

Online condolences can be offered at

EVENTS >> 5-27-17


The Jacksonville Museum of Military History will hold a Heritage Day from 10 a.m. till 5 p.m. today. Admission is free.

“Looking for something fun and inexpensive for the family on Memorial Day Weekend? Enjoy and celebrate Arkansas’ rich military heritage by attending Heritage Day at the Jacksonville Museum of Military History,” the announcement says.

A special exhibit on Arkansas’ role in World War I will be on display all day. It was created by the Arkansas State Archives to commemorate the centennial of the First World War.

There will be American and German re-enactors of World War II soldiers, live music by the Dogtown Ukulele Band from 11:30 a.m. till 12:15 p.m. and Crystal Gray from 12:15 till 1 p.m. Free hot dogs and hamburgers will be served from 11:30 a.m. till 1 p.m.

The film “Injury Slight...Please Advise” will be shown at 1:30 p.m.

The museum, which is at 100 Veterans Circle, will be closed on Monday for Memorial Day. For more information, call 501-241-1943 or email

The museum also invites people to attend the Memorial Day ceremony at the Veterans Cemetery on Maryland Avenue in Sherwood at 10 a.m. Monday.


The Lonoke County Museum will host a living history day from 10 a.m. till 2 p.m. today. Admission is free.

Re-enactors will be working in the museum’s displays. Guests are encouraged to bring their cameras.

The museum is at 215 S.E. Front St. in Lonoke.


Life Tabernacle will hold a gospel-singing event at 6 p.m. today. The church is at 23903 Hwy. 107, outside of the air base’s back gate heading towards Vilonia.

Inspiring movie Sunday at Zion Hill Baptist

Zion Hill Baptist Church in north Pulaski County will show the movie “Miracles from Heaven” at 5 p.m. Sunday.

The church is at 11923 Zion Hill Road near Hwys. 107 and 89.

The event is free and open to everyone.


The Central Arkansas Development Council will distribute free groceries starting at 9 a.m. Wednesday at several Lonoke County. Income guidelines must be met and ID is required to receive food, which may include dry pinto beans, carrots, corn flakes, cranberry juice, fruit mix, peanut butter, peas, black-eye peas, potato flakes, raisins, beef stew, powder milk and vegetable soup.

The food will be distributed at the following locations: Cabot Church of Christ, 500 N. Second St.; the Ward Chamber of Commerce, 80 W. Second St.; Austin City Hall, 202 Hendricks St.; the Woodlawn Senior Center, 10070 Hwy. 31 N., and the Lonoke County Fairgrounds, 800 W. Third St. in Lonoke.


The North Metro Medical Center Auxiliary will hold a new book sale from 7 a.m. till 3 p.m. Thursday and Friday in the Jacksonville hospital’s cafeteria.

The event is open to the public. Proceeds will help patients and their families and hospital employees. For more information, call 501-982-7001. The hospital is at 1400 Braden St.


The Sherwood Chamber of Commerce will hold its 41st annual community fish fry from 5 till 7 p.m. Thursday, June 8 at Sherwood Forest, 1111 W. Maryland Ave.

Tickets are $12 for adults, $6 for kids ages 6 to 10 and children under 5 eat free.

Tickets can be purchased at the chamber office, 295 W. Kiehl Ave., or at the mayor’s office at city hall, 2199 E. Kiehl Ave. Tickets can also be purchased from any chamber board member.

For a list of current board members and contact information, or for more information, call chamber director at Marcia Cook, 501-835-7600 or


Goodsell Truck Accessories’ 18th annual car and truck show will be held from 10 a.m. till 4 p.m. Saturday, June 10 at 401 Municipal Drive. The event was rained out twice recently. Proceeds will benefit the Jacksonville Museum of Military History.

The car show is organized by the Arkansas Street Machines car club. For more information, call 501-982-2245.


Mount Pisgah Baptist Church in Jacksonville will hold its vacation Bible school June 5-8.

Classes are held for all ages each evening from 6 till 7:15 p.m. This year’s theme is “Discovering the God of the Universe,” Colossians 1:15-16.

The service portion begins at 7:30 p.m. with the following ministers will speak: Rev. Dwight D. Townsend, pastor of Longley Baptist Church in Little Rock on Tuesday, June 6; Bishop Kenneth Robinson of Antioch Full Gospel Baptist Church in Little Rock on Wednesday June 7; Rev. Phillip Pointer, pastor of St. Mark Baptist Church on Thursday, June 8.

The church is at 1017 Ray Road. For more information, call 501-982-6215 or email


The annual McRae school reunion will be held at 4:30 p.m. Saturday, June 10 at Beebe Middle School, 308 N. Wilks St. in McRae. The class of 1967 will be honored on its 50th anniversary and will present a program at 5:30 p.m.

Dinner costs $6 and will be served at 6:15 p.m.

“If you went to school at McRae, but did not graduate from McRae, still come, we would love to see you. I’m sure you will see someone you know,” said the announcement.


The Jacksonville High School Class of 1987 will hold its 30-year reunion Friday, June 9 and Saturday, June 10 in the high school’s field house. All classmates, family and friends are invited to attend.

To purchase tickets, visit

CLASSIFIEDS >> 5-24-17


Attn: Diabetics  If you are between 18-75 years and have Painful Peripheral Neuropathy with Diabetes and Pain in Both Legs. Join our Phase 3  Study for the  Treatment of  Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy, This study involves  Intramuscular Injections (IM) of VM202 in both calves and the study lasts 9 months. Call Clinical Trials for more info: (501) 227-6179. Visit


HARRELL LAWN Service, specializing in hedge trimming, flower beds, mowing and edging. (501) 259-1607.

FOR ALL of your carpentry and remodeling needs - metal roofs, decks, privacy fences, doors, windows, floor repairs and coverings. 25 years of experience. Call (501) 266-0410.

PERSONAL TOUCH Lawncare. All push mowing, blowing and edging. Call anytime (501) 772-3240.

ETHEL’S EDUCATIONAL Express Child Development Center is now accepting new enrollments and all vouchers. Summer School Program...Hurry, before all openings are taken. Call Ethel at (501) 241-1172 or (501) 747-8713 today!

BUSH HOGGING fields and lots. Free estimates. Call Danny, (501) 681-4504.

CARPET RE-STRETCHING and repairs. 33 years experience. Free estimates. References available. Serving Cabot/Jacksonville/Sherwood area. Call (501) 538-5261, no text message please.

DIVORCE WITH OR WITHOUT children $125.00. Includes name change and property settlement agreement. SAVE hundreds. Fast and easy. Call 1-888-733-7165, 24/7.


WANTED: EXPERIENCED trim carpenters, hanging interior doors, running ceiling molds, trimming windows and baseboards. 40 hours/week, work rain or shine. Transportation furnished from shop, but still need valid license. (501) 681-9938.

IMMEDIATE HIRE, International company, with over 25 years in business, has 10-15 openings in local office. We are looking to expand our operations and need people to help advertise for our company. No experience needed. $350-$725 week to start. Call for interview, (501) 605-1303.

SALES ASSISTANT/COMPUTER-ACT, excellent phone, set appointments, good office skills and presentation. NLR (501) 771-2800.

Lawn Care and Gen. Apt. Maintenance help needed in Jacksonville. Please email: or fax 501-375-3141.

HELP WANTED: Female caregiver. Must love cats. Need immediately. Call Doris, leave message. (501) 743-8129.

DIRECT CARE POSITIONS - Provide support to individuals, including assistance with daily and Personal care. Excellent Benefits. Qualified candidates MUST APPLY ONLINE: NeuroRestorative Timber Ridge, 15000 Hwy 98, Benton Ar 72019. Drug-free work environment. Clean Background and MVR • EOE.

LEAD MAN WANTED - Central AR Pre-Fab Metal shop taking applications for lead man, salary negotiable, Send resumes to:

CLASS A CDL TEAMS – NEED ASAP! SIGNING BONUS ON DAY ONE! DRIVE FOR FedEx GROUND! Harrison, LR and Memphis. START 50 CPM, Premium Mileage Pay, great benefits. HOME 2 DAYS PER WK.  Must have 1 yr. of exp.  and able to get doubles endorsement. Call/text for more info. 870-754-5100 or email:

JOIN OUR TEAM!  Little Rock Based Company is seeking OTR Drivers for our dry van division. Qualified applicants must be 23 years of age, have a Class A CDL with 2 years Verifiable Over the Road Experience. New pay package, Home every weekend, Paid holidays and vacation, Quarterly Safety Performance Bonus, Benefits (After 60 Days) Blue CrossMedical (We pay 50% of drivers), Delta Dental, Delta Vision and 401k (Matched Up To 4%). or call (501) 228-8800.

CDL Flatbed Drivers Needed - $600.00 Sign on Bonus, Great pay, Health Ins, Retirement, Plan, Vacation, Holiday Pay, Home Weekly, 90% No-Tarp, Uniforms and Jackets Provided. Earn $50,000.00 to $65,000.00 Yr.  Call Chuck or Jeremy 501-945-1433 Apply in person:5007 E. Broadway, NLR.


CAINE AUCTION - Sat. June 17th @ 9:00 am CST,  729 HWY 64 West. Wynne, AR, 72396. BULL CHEVROLET, BUICK, GMC, relocated to their new facility and everything in the old dealership must go!!!. Partial list: Antique Vehicles, Memorabilia, Signs, Service Manuals, Parts Manuals, Trade ins, Boats, Tractors, Toys!! Details,pics,TERMS and list go to: and click on “Upcoming Auctions”. 10% buyers premium onsite. Internet bidding avail 15% buyers premium online. Joey Cain, 501-258-5518. Lic.#2041.


YARD SALE, 5/26, 8 am-5 pm, 5/27, 8 am-noon, 309 Lynn Ln., Lonoke. Furniture, household goods, clothes, misc.

MULTI-FAMILY YARD sale, 5/26 and 27, 65 Carriage Cv., Austin. Little bit of everything.

HUGE FAMILY garage sale, 5/26 and 27, 8 am-3 pm, 10204 Hwy. 89, Furlow. Furniture, kitchen items, washer, clothes, collectibles, antiques and more.

RUMMAGE SALE, 5/25 and 26, 7 am-5 pm, 8 miles north of Lonoke, off Hwy. 31, follow signs. Lots of misc. lots of 25¢ items including clothes and toys.


2000 CADILLAC El Dorado, bad motor, good straight body, light blue w/dk. blue top, $2,000. (501) 749-9882.

2002 DURAMAX rear end out of a 3500, 8-bolt pattern w/brake assembly, $500 obo. (501) 352-8484, Jim.

HONDA RIM, aluminum 4-hole, 7-spoke, 15x5.5, 195/60/15 tire, $50 obo. (501) 882-2142.

USED TIRES, BF Goodrich Touring, 205/65R15, very good, $25; Goodyear 205/65R16, good, $20; Firestone P205/65R15, fair, $15. (501) 266-2732, Lonoke.

USED TIRES, (3) Goodyear Wrangler AT Kevlar 275/55R20, only 20,000 miles on them, $225. (501) 380-5544.

1995 HONDA Civic and 1998 Ford F-150 pickup, both run good, $1,650 ea. obo. 952-3937, Jax.

‘98 FORD F-150, single cab, SWB, pwr. steering and brakes, A/C, 5-spd. trans., $2,800. (501) 288-0735, no texts.

1990 MAZDA MX-5 Miata, 101,205 miles, $4,500. (501) 533-7726.

2006 PONTIAC Montana, tan, 107,000 miles, 3.5 V6, loaded, super clean, 3rd row, heat and cool air, $5,500. (573) 217-5511 or (573) 217-5500.

SINGLE AXLE trailer, 4x8, $150. (501) 743-8442.

TRI-FOLD PICKUP Tonneau cover, fits several models of Ford trucks, 2014 down, $225. (501) 580-4176.


KAWASAKI 2005 Vulcan Classic 800, lots of extras, adult driven, garage kept, 26,000 miles, $3,000. (501) 676-3358.

COACHMAN, 2009 bumper pull, 26’ bunkhouse, no slide, $7,000. (501) 796-8023, no texts.

BASS TRACKER PT175, 50 hp. motor, electric trolling motor, fish finder and trailer, $5,400 obo. (501) 286-7268.

‘04 SPORTSCOACH motorhome, 38’, 2 slides, all bells and whistles, extra clean, low mileage. (501) 982-7916.

2007 KAWASAKI Nomad 1600 trike, all new tires, loaded, 14,400 miles, $10,500. (501) 658-1802.

TRAILER HITCH for 5th wheel, max. weight 18,000 lbs., max. pin weight 4,500 lbs., $895. (501) 982-6812.

DURACRAFT 14x18x36”, deep boat w/storage box, trailer, 15 hp. Evinrude electric start motor, $1,500 firm. (501) 658-0767.

Fleetwood Providence Class A Diesel, excellent condition, fully loaded, 4 slides, only 16,500 miles, $109,900. (501) 843-7491.


JOHN DEERE Arrow 266, no hood, needs seat cover, runs and mows,42” cut, $375. (501) 983-1445.

2003 FARMPRO 2420 tractor, looks good, runs good, has tiller, disc, scoop and bush hog (needs work), $3,800. (501) 983-1445.

SEARS MOWING deck, 42” cut, $125; horse-drawn metal buster. (%01) 843-5475.

120 GAL. pond form w/waterfall attachment and water pump. Also, pallet of creek bottom bedrock, $400 obo. (501) 628-2238.


ARKY BARKY’S now open - great selection of beautiful puppies, guaranteed. Also, doing grooming and doggie supplies. 9714 Hwy. 107/JFK, Sherwood, (501) 819-6094.

HAY FOR sale in Austin, good mixed grass in barn, 4x5 net-wrapped, 1st cut and 2nd cut available. Local delivery. Also, garden manure available. Call (501) 416-8107 anytime.

WHELPING BOX, 44x44, solid wood, $100. (501) 266-2732, Lonoke.

WEIMARANER/DOBERMAN mix, 4.5 months old, aprrox. 50 lbs., “Duke and Elsa” (brother and sister), to good home. Call/text: (501) 563-1333.

FREE TO good home, male dog, black Schnauzer/Terrier mix, all shots, neutered, excellent watchdog. (501) 983-0090.

FEMALE PUPPY, no papers, about 2 mos. old, needs big yard, has shots. (501) 517-4481, Jax.

CHICKENS, nice barred rock, buff orpington and Rhode Island reds. (501) 259-8785.

FREE, 4 laying hens. (501) 322-5501, Des Arc.

FREE DOG, German Shepherd/Catahoula mix, current on shots, housebroken, great w/older kids and other dogs, outside dog, needs fenced yard in country, includes lg. doghouse and accessories. Owners deployed. Text: (501) 259-4203.

FREE DUCK dog, well-trained and born to hunt. (501) 804-7373.

FREE TO good home, 3 very sweet kittens, (501) 858-8649, Beebe, text only.

FREE 6 yr. old Calico, spayed, declawed (front), shots current. Molly is not a lap-sitter or cuddler. Call/text: (870) 703-8944, Garner.

2’x2’x5’ CAGE, $50. (501) 983-1445.


WANTED- 10 HOMES In your county needing METAL ROOFS, SIDING OR WINDOWS For Our before and after brochure.  Offer good for brick, frame or mobile homes. SAVE HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS. We are opening a branch office and will be using these homes for our 2017 brochure. No money down financing. Payments $89/Mo. Free estimates. Senior/Military discounts. wac CALL NOW!! 866-668-8681.

CARPORT FOR SALE - Protection Against pollen, hail, ice, snow, sun and falling limbs,  90mph wind and 20lb snow rating, 12’ wide x 20’ long $777 delivered, Call 800-643-8728, OD Funk Manufacturing Inc.

SAWMILLS from only $4397.00- MAKE and SAVE MONEY with your own bandmill - Cut lumber any dimension. In stock ready to ship! FREE Info/DVD: 1-800-578-1363 Ext. 300N.

(2) 5 hp. singe-phase pumps, 230 volts, 60 hz.,, pd. $3,500,  $200 ea. (501) 837-7225.

CRISTAL D’ARQUES Durand France crystal grand piano trinket/jewelry box, excellent! Made in France, $20 cash. (501) 983-4168, Jax.

TALON GHOST paint ball gun, clear w/view loader, needs C02, $30 obo. (501) 882-2142.

GUITAR, SPECTRUM 38” concert style, acoustic, in box, case, pick and electronic tuner, $50. (501) 266-2732, Lonoke.

IRON SMOKER charcoal, 20x15, Oklahoma Joe, $150. 982-6812.

GIRL’S INFANT car seat, excellent condition, $25. 516-3810.

RED, WHITE and blue trike planter, new cond., $15; 4 wall mirrors, $5-$15 ea.; 1970 Carrom board, good condition, $15. (501) 983-4168.

GUITAR AMP by Fender, Campion 100, new, lots of features, $250. 941-7719, Cabot.

MOBILE HOME, must be torn down and removed, ASAP, no axles. (501) 266-9836.

GOLF CLUBS and bag w/wheels, $100. (501) 982-6812.

52” CEILING fan w/5 lights, gold w/brown blades, good condition, $20. (501) 835-9795.

VICTORY PRIDE 10 4-wheel mobility scooter, 9 mos. old, $750. (501) 322-4096.

AVON 1977 old grist mill sugar and creamer set, new, made in Japan, $10; compact “DressMaker” sewing machine, works great, $15. (501) 983-4168.

AVON COLLECTORS - 1969 Pyramid of Fragrance “Brocade” w/cologne and box, $15; 2 nice Pier One natural wicker chairs, $25 ea. (501) 983-4168, Jax.

ELITE JAZZY Scooter, excellent condition, have electric lifts or ramps, all for $1,500, optional. (501) 676-0618, leave msg.

GOLF CLUBS, Calloway X-20 irons, Cleveland driver, Odyssey putter, golf bag and misc., $300. (501) 920-8558, Beebe.

GOLF CLUBS, Wilson flat shaft irons, Taylor driver, putter and many miscellaneous with bag, $200. (501) 920-8558, Beebe.

INFINITI TABLET w/keyboard and accessory kit, $125. (501) 743-8129, Doris.

JAZZY SELECT 14 power chair, 2 batteries w/charger, reduced price $1,000. (501) 743-8129.

BOOK COLLECTORS: First Editions, some over 100 yrs. old, also, first edition of Roots and Crisis at Central High w/dust cover, $25 ea. (501) 983-4168, Jax.

KOHLER DOUBLE sink w/Delta fixtures, very good condition, $100. 843-5376.


5-PC. BEDROOM set - dresser, mirror, full/queen headboard, rails, chest of drawers, good condition, $350 firm. (501) 319-5429.

GOOD FRIGIDAIRE chest-type freezer, medium-size, $75. (501) 259-3389.

FULL-SIZED wooden bedroom set, $200; dining room set w/hutch, $400; leather lift recliner, $1,200. (501) 676-2105.

QUEEN MATTRESS, good condition, no bad places, free. 743-8442.

SOLID WOOD, dark 4-post, queen-size bed, $190; upholstered headboard, $40. (501) 605-1701.

BEAUTIFUL 3-PC. entertainment center w/2 lighted speaker towers, pics. avail., $200. (501) 676-8911.

TABLE, RATTAN, round, glass top w/4 chairs, very good, clean condition, pics. avail., $85. (501) 676-8911.

TABLE, RATTAN and bamboo, white, hexagon, glass top w/4 chairs, very nice, pics. avail., $85. (501) 676-8911.

HOT POINT 4-cycle washer, good condition, pics. avail. $75. (501) 676-8911.

SOLID WOOD furniture, no scratches, dresser, armoire, nightstand, medium brown, $100. (501) 613-7588.


IN BEEBE: very nice, 2 Bedroom/2 Bath apartments. All utilities paid including basic cable. Washer and dryer furnished. $700 month. Twin Lakes Apartments. Call Lisa at 278-0498.

COZY, one room studio apartments in Jacksonville. Bed pulls down from wall in Living Room in front of wood burning fireplace. Includes appliance filled kitchen. Starting at $325 plus utilities, deposit $200.  No children or pets. Camp Construction, (501) 982-0434.

35 CARRIAGE Cove, Austin, 1458 sf, 3 BR, 2 BA, fenced in backyard. (501) 590-2438.

3639 HWY. 367, Austin, 1,000 sf, 2 BR, 1 BA, fenced in backyard. (501) 590-2438.

FOR RENT: quiet country living, 10 miles north of air base, 2 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath, attached garage, new throughout, large deck, large yard, pets negotiable. Call for info. (501) 733-5712 or (501) 413-9128.

HOUSE FOR rent, in Ward: 3 bedroom, 2 bath, 2-car garage, $800 month, $500 deposit. (501) 941-0650.

For Lease: 2045 sq. ft., 3 Bedroom, 2 Bath Home on 5 acres in a country setting. Features a 2-car garage, spacious upgraded kitchen, oversized master suite, hardwood floors and large fenced pet friendly yard. 30 minutes to LRAFB. Beebe School District. $1600 per month. Call Missy for more details @ (501) 425-1006.


CABOT 4 BR/3 BA, 2303 sq. ft.! See full ad w/pics on, search by MBO402659. Call or email us before it’s gone!

FSBO: 3 bedroom with a partially finished 4th bedroom upstairs, 2 bath, 2 stories, 2,000 sq. ft. home, extra large 2-car garage, fantastic, well-established military friendly, family friendly neighborhood and just 1 mile from 67/167. It is 25 minutes to the LRAFB front gate. Stove, microwave, refrigerator and dishwasher included. Can also include all household furniture if the price is right. Asking $164,000 obo. Located in Beebe, AR. Call or text: (501) 207-1137.


Have a title to your Car, Boat, or Mobile home? Get a new home with any trade-in! Call 501-653-3205.

VERY CLEAN 3 BED 2 BATH Singlewide for sale! call 501-653-3202.

SPORTS EVENTS >> 5-27-17


The Future Lady Titan Volleyball Camp will be held from 8:30-11:30 a.m. June 5-8 at the JHS gymnasium. All female students entering grades 3rd through 8th are invited to take part. Campers will develop individual skills and team concepts, with a stress on fundamentals, sportsmanship, self-confidence and team play. Each camper will receive a camp T-shirt, and special achievement awards will be given the last day of camp. Registration is $55, $45 for JNPSD employees. Registration forms can be mailed with checks payable to Jacksonville athletics to the attention of Savannah Jacoby, Jacksonville High School, 2400 Linda Lane, Jacksonville, AR 72076. Campers can also register the first day of camp starting at 8 a.m.

For more information, contact JHS volleyball coach Savannah Jacoby at


The Optimist Club Junior Olympic Golf Qualifying Tournament will be held Saturday, June 10 at the Conway Country Club. The tournament is open to boys and girls ages 10-18, and flight winners will qualify for an expense-paid trip to the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships in Palm Springs, Fla., in July. Registration fee is $50 and payable to Conway Country Club. To register, call Conway Country Club at 501-450-9159, or visit


The Jacksonville Lions Club will hold its 36th annual Golf Scramble at Southern Oaks Golf Course on Friday, June 16. The format is a 4-person scramble. Registration is $100 per person and includes range balls, greens fee, cart and unlimited on-course beverages. Mulligans and skirts will be available for $5 at registration. The deadline to register is June 13.

Sponsorships are also available for $700, $300 and $150.

For more information, call Dianne Williams at 501-912-4343 or email Or call Bob Lester at 501-680-0815 or email


The annual Chamber/Base Golf Tournament is now registering teams for its four-person scramble that will be held June 23 at the Deer Run Golf Course on the Little Rock Air Force Base. The tournament joint event between the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce and the Little Rock AFB is $125 per person, and the entry fee includes lunch, carts, beverages and range balls. Deadline is June 9 and limited to the first 42 chamber members to register. For more information, call the chamber office at 501-982-1511 or email

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

TOP STORY >> Every child can eat free during summer

The Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance kicked off its summer- meal program for children on Tuesday at Warren Dupree Elementary School.

The program serves free breakfast and lunches during the summer for children ages 6 weeks to 18 years old.

Students were given apples and pencils. They learned where meals will be served when school is out for summer.

To find a summer-meal site visit

Jacksonville-North Pulaski School District

The following Jacksonville schools will serve breakfast from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. and lunch from noon to 1 p.m.

Dupree Elementary, weekdays June 12-30

Jacksonville High School, weekdays June 5-23

Jacksonville Middle School, weekdays June 5-30

Pinewood Elementary, Tuesdays-Thursdays, June 6-29

Cabot School District

Westside Elementary, weekdays, June 1 to July 29. Breakfast from 7:30 to 8 a.m. and lunch from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Ward Central Elementary, weekdays, June 1 to July 29. Breakfast from 7:30 to 8 a.m. Lunch from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Lonoke School District

Lonoke Elementary, weekdays, June 1 to July 30. Breakfast from 7:30 a.m. to 8:15 a.m. Lunch from 11 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.

Beebe School District

Beebe Primary School cafeteria, weekdays from May 30-Aug. 4. Breakfast is from 7:30-8:30 a.m. Lunch is from 11a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Stoney Ridge Place, Thursdays, June 8 to July 27. Lunch only from noon to 12:30 p.m.

Lunnie Park, weekdays from May 30 to Aug. 4. Lunch only from 11a.m.-11:30 a.m.

Antioch Community Church on Mondays, June 5 to July 24. Lunch only from 11:50 a.m. to 12:20 p.m.

McRae City Park, Wednesdays, June 7 to July 26. Lunch only from 11:50 a.m. to 12:20 p.m.

TOP STORY >> Students stock up prizes

Leader staff writer

The top student stock market teams from around the state, including Jacksonville and Beebe, gathered recently at Verizon Arena in North Little Rock to be honored for their prowess at making money.

But the event saluting the top 1.5 percent of the 8,000 participants had a more somber than celebratory aura about it as one of the young winners had died a week earlier in floods that had ravaged parts of the state.

Rosie Howard, a 10-year-old from Robert E. Lee Elementary in Springdale, who had teamed up with classmate Angela Albarran to take second place in the Region 1 elementary division, was found dead after she had jumped a fence in her backyard and landed in a ditch of fast moving floodwaters. She was one of seven Arkansans to die in that late April storm.

Arkansas Economics, which sponsors the Stock Market Game and the banquet, invited Rosie’s family to the event. Ray Hobbs, president and CEO of Hart Tackle Co. and chairman of the Economics Arkansas Foundation, took a few minutes to pay tribute to Rosie and her enthusiasm and excitement for life whenever he saw her at school.

“She was always working on a project to make the school better,” Hobbs said.

When it came to the winning Beebe teams it was the girls against the guys and the girls took first. The team of Madelyn Elkins and Abby Patterson took home a trophy, medallions, certificates and shared $125 cash. The pair, along with their adviser Lori Shannon, were asked to speak to the gathering of young financiers.

Shannon said it was hard to express the feelings and energy she saw in the classroom when the students were involved in the nine-week virtual-reality stock market activity.

“Students were handed $100,000 in virtual computer money and told to invest it. The game put the students’ minds in a place they had not been before. You can’t get this type of experience or training out of a book,” Shannon said.

“There was excitement in the classroom … electricity in the air,” Shannon added.

Elkins and Patterson, both eighth graders, said they would use what they learned from the game to their benefit when they got older.

Because the game was for a relatively short time, Elkins said the team looked for volatile stocks that were on the move, “but it was very unpredictable.”

Patterson added, “That too many stocks in one area was not good, so we spread out our choices to create a safety net.”

The Beebe guys, Alex Holland, Zach Joyner and Jaime Rodriquez, and their coach Mark Pinkerton took second place in their division and region and the students shared $75 cash, plus a trophy, medallions and certificates.

Pinkerton, who splits his time between coaching and teaching economics, said the activity shows the students that this is something “they can do, and that they can start early.” One of the objectives for Pinkerton is for students to understand how current events can affect stocks. “What happens in Washington, D.C., or overseas, is important,” Pinkerton said.

In Region Six, the Arnold Drive Elementary team of Chauncey Butler, Khalia Lockett, Loren Markham and Khalil Lockett, took second place and shared $75 cash.

“We actually got $20 each because our teacher chipped in five more dollars,” explained Butler.

Arnold Drive also had the top elementary financial writer in the state. Fifth-grader Mackenzie Turner nabbed top honors with her essay, “If Life Gives You Questions, Google Gives You Answers,” in the Investwrite contest, an offshoot of the Stock Market Game. She won $75 all for herself.

In her essay, Turner wrote, “Back in the old days, if people needed information it was off to a row of heavily-bound encyclopedias, looking for the right volume, then searching by hand for the correct page. Boy, they had it tough. Now when life gives you questions, Google gives you answers. Google has become such a large part of our lives today it is more than a company name, it’s a verb – ‘just Google it.’”

She closed her essay saying, “Google has been the second most valuable brand in the world, behind only Apple Inc. in 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016, with a valuation of $133 billion. As of November 25th Google’s stock price was $780.23 a share. This can be considered a reasonable price for a long-term investor that has time to wait for continued growth.

“My recommendation for a long-term investor would be to purchase as much Google stock as financially possible. Google has had many large price swings, but over time the swings have turned upward for great profit. Google is still considered a young company and is continuing to grow.”

The national contest, sponsored by the Security Industry and Financial Markets Association Foundation, asked students to describe a company that was started by one or two people and evolved into a major company and a good investment.

The winning Arnold Drive stock market team had advice for those wanting to invest, “Buy when the stocks are low.”

Khali Lockett said they looked at companies they knew, but more importantly looked for good numbers and rankings.

All elementary schools, plus the middle school, in the Jacksonville-North Pulaski School District participated.

TOP STORY >> Airmen’s body to come home

The body of an Arkansas airman, who died in a plane crash nearly 65 years ago in Alaska, will be returned here Friday with full military honors.

Little Rock Air Force Base officials will receive the remains of Staff Sgt. Robert Dale Van Fossen at the Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport.

Van Fossen, a graduate of the Greenbrier High School Class of 1949, and 51 others have been resting on an Alaskan glacier since 1952.

Their plane’s wreckage was discovered in 2012, when efforts began to recover the bodies.

In March 2016, Van Fos-sen’s family was notified that a positive identification had been made and that his remains would be returned to Arkansas, according to a news release from 19th Airlift Wing Public Affairs.

Van Fossen was one of 41 passengers onboard a Douglas C-124A-DL Globemaster II that crashed into Mount Gannett on Nov. 22, 1952.

Nicknamed “Old Shaky,” the plane was flying from McChord Air Base in Tacoma, Wash., to Elmendorf Air Force Base near Anchorage, Alaska. Its crew of 11 also perished.

The passengers were members of all four military branches. Van Fossen was in the Air Force at the time of the crash. He had also served in the Arkansas Army National Guard.

The Patriot Guard will escort his body from the airport to Heber Springs for burial in a family plot.