PLANE GOES DOWN IN NEW FAIRVIEW — A plane either crashed or made a hard landing in a field Sunday afternoon in New Fairview. Emergency responders were dispatched to the area of Farm Road 407 and South County Line Road around 4 p.m. after someone reported seeing a small plane flying low in the area and then smoke, according to initial reports to dispatchers. After searching the area, first responders located the plane in the middle of a field east of County Road 4717 not far from the Wise/Denton County line. “Upon arrival of first responders, no pilot or other persons were located,” said Sgt. Ricky Hunter, spokesperson with the Texas Department of Public Safety. “The FAA was notified and has taken over the investigation.” Wise County EMS, East Wise Fire Department, Wise County Sheriff’s Office and DPS also responded to the scene.
MORE FIREFIGHTERS HEAD TO PALO PINTO — Six more firefighters from three Wise County fire departments are headed to Palo Pinto County today to help battle the large wildfire. Two firefighters from East Wise, two from Chico and two from Wise County ESD No. 1 (Boyd) will join a task force. The group will take apparatus, carrying collectively 10,500 gallons of water. Three Boyd firefighters, including chief Jason Paradise, two firefighters from Paradise and two from Bridgeport were deployed Friday evening with a joint task force, which also included firefighters from Montague County fire departments. The group returned Sunday. Powell said Wise County Fire Marshal Jeff Doughty assembled the local resources. Powell coordinated with emergency management coordinators in Palo Pinto and Montague counties. The firefighters joined a Wise County Medic and EMS personnel, which headed to Palo Pinto County Friday night to aid in the response to a massive wildfire. The medic crew is being deployed with the North Texas Emergency Medical Task Force 2. Wise County EMS Administrator Randall Preuninger said the crew with Medic 7 is likely to be deployed five to seven days. The crew is working to support firefighters battling the Dempsey Fire, which is more than 11,500 acres. It is between Graford and Mineral Wells. According to the Texas A&M Forest Service social media, the fire is just 27 percent contained. Aviation resources are assisting firefighters.
FORMER CITY ADMINISTRATOR INDICTED FOR THEFT — Toni Wheeler, the former city administrator for Aurora, was indicted Thursday by a Wise County grand jury for theft by public servant. According to district court records, Wheeler was indicted for the first degree felony offense of theft of property more than $300,000 by a public servant. Investigators began looking into possible criminal activity following a fire that destroyed Aurora city hall on June 1, 2021, and found evidence that Wheeler stole more than $650,000 from the city, according to the probable cause affidavit with Wheeler’s arrest warrant. She was arrested Dec. 16, 2021. Read more online or in the midweek Wise County Messenger.
HEAT RELIEF — After temperatures topped out at 103 degrees Friday and 101 Saturday in Decatur, a cold front will bring slightly cooler temperatures for the beginning of the work week. Highs Monday and Tuesday are expected to be in the upper-80s with overnight lows in the upper-60s. We have a slight chance of thunderstorms this morning.
GROUNDWATER UPDATE — Upper Trinity Groundwater Conservation District General Manager Doug Shaw will provide an update to Wise County commissioners during their meeting at 9 this morning in the historic courthouse.
RENAMING COUNCIL CHAMBERS — The Decatur City Council will consider naming the council chambers after longtime city manager Brett Shannon at its meeting at 6 tonight.
GOSPEL OPRY SING-ALONG — The monthly Gospel Opry Sing-Along is 6:30 tonight in the G.C. Rann Auditorium of the Wise County Heritage Museum in Decatur. Admission is free. A collection will be accepted to be used toward the expenses of the museum.
FUNERALS — No service is scheduled for Elray Hay, 81, Rhome. Hawkins Funeral Home in Decatur is handling arrangements.
SERVICES for Jane Dixon, 99, and Scott Kallio, 80, both of Bridgeport are pending at Hawkins Funeral Home in Bridgeport
SERVICE for Donna Thompson, 78, formerly of Newark is pending at Hawkins Funeral Home in Boyd.
MEMORIAL service for James “Jimmy” Carter, 67, of Decatur is 10 a.m. Saturday at Hudson & Torres Family Funeral in Bridgeport.
SERVICE for Charlotte Ann (Partain) Bailey, 79, will be held at a later date.