4 INJURED IN MOTORCYCLE/PICKUP COLLISION – A married couple injured after their motorcycle collided into the side of a pickup early Saturday evening on U.S. 81/287 south of Decatur are expected to make full recoveries. The driver, Roger Ferguson, the pastor of First Baptist Church in Justin, suffered several dislocated bones in the wreck. He was flown to JPS Hospital in Fort Worth. His wife Marla was ejected from the bike according to one witness. She has since been taken out of ICU at Wise Regional in Decatur and is now in stable condition. The couple was southbound on U.S. 81/287 when a pickup pulled out in front of them near NRS Trailers. The motorcycle, which was traveling 55 to 60 mph, struck the rear driver’s side tire with such impact it tore the wheel off the truck and spun the pickup 180 degrees counter-clockwise, leaving it immobile and sitting in a ditch in the median. The driver of the pickup, Brandie Hood, and her husband, Jerry, both of Chico, were uninjured in the wreck. Three children were seated in the back seat of the truck. Two were taken to Cook Children’s in Fort Worth after they complained of soreness. Hood told DPS officers she didn’t see the motorcycle coming. Any potential charges, such as failure to yield, are still pending investigation.
EARLY VOTING BEGINS – Early voting starts today for the May 11 city council and school board elections. Only a few local entities have contested races: Chico ISD, the City of Decatur and Decatur ISD, Northwest ISD and the City of Rhome. Early voting runs today through May 7 and hours for Decatur, Northwest and Rhome are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, except Tuesday, April 30, and Tuesday, May 7. The polls are open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. those days, as they will be on election day. The poll in Chico is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. There are no extended hours. Read more in the weekend Wise County Messenger on news stands now.
TOP HONORS – The Decatur High School journalism program added more honors during the Texas Interscholastic League Press Conference in Austin over the weekend. The newspaper, on-line and year book staffs brought home 39 individual honors while senior Cristin Morgan received the Josten Scholar Award. The on-line version of the school newspaper received a silver award and the print version a bronze award at the event, ranking the DHS journalism program among the tops in the state. Cindy Berry is the journalism teacher at the high school.
REGIONAL TRACK – Several local track athletes will be headed to state after their performance at regional competition this weekend. Decatur’s Haley Dennard won first place in the 800 meters, and Nicole Neighbors finished second in both the 100 hurdles and 300 hurdles. Northwest had a trio of first place winners including Kellee McCann in the 3,200, Zach Kirkland in the 800 and Desiree Freier in pole vault. Kiarra Simpson won second place in discus. Alvord’s Savannah Williams also advanced to state in the 800.
HOMES FOR WOUNDED WARRIORS – When the J. W. Hart Professional Bull Riders event comes around on June 8 there will be a presentation of up to five homes for wounded military veterans thanks to a major fund raising event by WC Challenger Charities. An estimated 170 persons attended an event Saturday at the First Baptist Church in Decatur where two wounded veterans – Brandon Blackwood and Jerimiah Frost – told how much the homes they had received through the Military Warrior Support Foundation had meant to their families. Andrew Rottner of WC Challenger Charities said that money for three homes had been secured and the drive was only $33,000 short to provide five homes to be presented during the bull riding event.
COMMUNITY HEALTH EDUCATION – Governor’s Ridge and Angels Care Home Health will host the second in a series of community education sessions 10:30-11:30 a.m. Tuesday at Governor’s Ridge, 300 E. Devereaux St. in Decatur. The topic is “enjoying fitness at any age.” There will be refreshments and a complimentary lunch following the seminar. RSVP at (940) 627-1104 or RSVP@governorsridge.com.
PHANTOM BALL – Wise Hope Shelter’s annual Phantom Ball fundraiser continues through the end of the month. Buy a ticket or sponsor this “non-event,” and support programs provided by Wise County Domestic Violence Task Force. Mail contributions to P.O. Box 569, Decatur, TX 76234 or drop by 608 N Bus. 81/287 in Decatur. Call (940) 626-4585 for more information.
POETRY CRAFTERNOON – The Decatur Public Library is celebrating National Poetry Month with a teen Poetry Crafternoon 4-6 p.m. Tuesday. Participants will enjoy poetry-inspired crafts such as book spine poetry, coffee cozys and more. Ages 12 and up are invited. Call (940) 393-0290 for more details.
RETIRED EDUCATOR MEETING – Wise County Retired School Personnel meets at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday at the Decatur Civic Center. All active and retired school personnel are invited. Call (940) 575-2341 to register.
GOSPEL SINGING – The monthly Gospel Opry is at 7 tonight in the G. C. Rann Little Theater on the second floor of the Wise County Heritage Museum on South Trinity Street in Decatur. Admission is free, but an offering will be accepted toward the expenses of the Museum.
4-H FUNDRAISER FOR RELAY – Join Wise County 4-Hers 4-8 tonight at CICi’s pizza as they raise money for their Relay for Life Team.
FUNERALS – Memorial service for John Bailey, 64, of Lake Bridgeport is 10 a.m. Wednesday at Jones Family Funeral Home in Bridgeport.
SERVICES for Dorothy Wagner, 72, and Blanca Nunez, 75, both of Decatur are pending at Coker-Hawkins Funeral Home in Decatur.
MEMORIAL service for Donnie Spurlock, 55, of Rhome is 10 a.m. today at Center Point Church in North Richland Hills. Coker-Hawkins is handling arrangements.
FUNERAL for Tonni S. Wittsche, 49, of Decatur is 10 a.m. Wednesday at Moore Funeral Home in Arlington.