Friday Afternoon Wreck Severely Injures Molino Man

May 29, 2009


A Molino man was severely injured in an accident Friday afternoon near Highland Baptist Church.

Christopher S. Grimm, 31, of Molino was involved in the accident on Highway 95A just south of Nancy Lane.

The Florida Highway Patrol says Grimm was was northbound on Highway 95A when an unknown southbound vehicle crossed into his path at about 4:10 p.m. That caused Grimm to take evasive action. He lost control, ran off the road, overturned and struck a tree, according to the FHP.

Grimm was transported from the scene to Sacred Heart Hospital in Pensacola by LifeFlight.

The FHP said the identity of the other driver and vehicle involved in the accident was unknown.

The Molino and Cantonment stations of Escambia Fire-Rescue and Escambia County EMS also responded to the call.

Pictured above: Christopher S. Grimm, 31, of Molino was severely injured in this accident Friday afternoon  near Highland Baptist Church. Pictured below: Grimm was transported from the scene by LifeFlight. Submitted photos by Brenda Kahalley for, click to enlarge.


May 29, 2009


NHS Holds Senior Honors Night

May 29, 2009


The Northview Class of 2009 held Senior Honors Night at the school Thursday night.

For a complete photo gallery from the event, click here.

The following awards, honors and scholarships were presented:

Summa Cum Laude (4.0 or higher GPA):  Luke Fletcher Killam, valedictorian; Lanie Jeannine Eubanks, salutatorian; Olivia Kaylen Bryan; Briana Renea Halteman; Amanda-Ann Morgan Sellars; Ashley Arlene Snow and Brittney Dawn Brown.

Magna Cum Laude (3.85 or higher GPA): Gabrielle Renae Hicks, Brett Andrew Hanks, Chelsea Ellen Sims, Gretchen Danea Boughner, Stormy Brooke Hayes and Danielle Althea Brown.

Cum Laude (3.5 or higher GPA): Alexander Martin Abbott, Melissa Nicole Garrett, Jody Wade Levins, Jessica Maria Mothershed, Richard Kyle Braun, Jamison Blayne Garrett, Amy Nicole Conner and Samantha Ann Macks.

Atmore Chamber Ambassador: Patrick McPherson

Atmore Rotary Club Academic All Stars: $400 recipients: Gretchen Boughner, Lanie Eubanks,Briana Halteman, Luke Killam; $300 recipients: Kayla Brewer, Amy Conner, Stormy Hayes, Melissa Garrett, Jessica Mothershed, Chelsea Sims and Ashley Snow.

Charles and Mayson Scholarship: Luke Killam

Escambia River Electric Cooperative: Olivia Bryan

First National Bank of Atmore Award: Luke Killam

McDonald Award: Shaquania Lewis

Pensacola Civitan Club: Amanda Sellars

Pensacola Junior College: Chelsea Sims and Garbell Wesley

Principal’s Leadership Award: Luke Killam

Spirit of the Chief Award: Luke Killam

Qunit and Rishy Studer Group Scholarship: Briana Halteman

Tri-City Rotary Club: Luke Killam

United Bank of Atmore Award: Lanie Eubanks

University of West Florida: Luke Killam, Olivia Bryan, Lanie Eubanks, Briana Halteman and Gabrielle Hicks

US Army Scholar Athlete: Luke Killam and Briana Halteman

USNA/NROTC: Amanda Sellars and Shaquaina Lewis

Jim/Jumi Ross Memorial Scholarship: Kayla Brewer and Amanda Sellars

Walnut Hill Ruritan: Patrick McPherson

Beta Club Stoles: Brittney Brown, Samantha Macks, Olivia Bryan, Jessica Mothershed, Lanie Eubanks, Amanda Sellars,Briana Halteman,  Chelsea Sims, Luke Killam and Ashley Snow.

Beta Club Medals: Jessica Mothershed, president; Lanie Eubanks, vice president; Olivia Bryan, secretary; Luke Killam, treasurer

Rho Kappa: Ashley Snow, Lanie Eubanks, Luke Killam, Amanda Sellars, Briana Halteman, Olivia Bryan and Brett Hanks.

Delata Kappa Gamma-Eta Chapter: Chelsea Sims

Dr. Alec Kessler Memorial Student-Athlete Scholarship: Luke Killam

EHS Class of ’62 Scholarship: Gretchen Boughner — $1000

Faulkner State College: Jamison Garrett

Huntingdon College: Patrick McPherson

Florida Bright Futures Recognition

Florida Medallion Scholars — 4 years: Alexander Abbott, Stormy Hayes, Gretchen Boughner, Gabrielle Hicks, Richard Braun, Luke Killam, Kayla Brewer, Samantha Macks, Brittney Brown, Samantha Merritt, Danielle Brown, Kristina Nellums, Amy Conner, Amanda Sellars, Lanie Eubanks, Chelsea Sims, Jamison Garrett and Ashley Snow.

Florida Academic Scholars — 4 years: Olivia Bryan, Briana Halteman and Brett Hanks.

Gold Seal Vocational — 2 years: Jody Levins and Patrick McPherson

John E. Frenkel, Sr. Educational Grants: Samantha Merritt

Pensacola Civitan Club Scholarship: Luke Killam — $1000

The King’s College:  Olivia Bryan – $ 48,000 (4 years)

Subject Area Awards

Jody Levins

Jessica Taylor, Visual Arts HAA
Jacqueline Loewen, Visual Arts Exemplary

Briana Halteman – Drum Major & John Philip Sousa
Jake Carlson – Outstanding Marching Award
Lanie Eubanks – Outstanding Marching Award

Business Technology
Web Design 1 – HAA
Samantha Merritt
Web Design 2 – HAA
Garbell Wesley
Web Design 3 HAA
Brandon Coburn

Diversified Education
Jessica Mothershed — HAA
Ashley Snow –Exemplary
Amie Sutton — Exemplary

Family & Consumer Science:
Chelsea Sims

NTV Television Production:
Olivia Bryan and Brandon Coburn

Language Arts
Hon Eng Lanie Eubanks – HAA
Hon Eng Luke Killam — Exemplary
Reg. Eng Ashley Snow — HAA
Reg. Eng Chelsea Sims — Exemplary

Lanie Eubanks – HAA

Briana Halteman – HAA Chem Honors
Lanie Eubanks – Exemplary Chem Honors
Luke Killam – Exemplary Chem Honors

Shakeria White

Social Studies
Chelsea Sims — HAA Eco. H
Jody Levins — HAA Eco.
Gretchen Boughner — Exemplary

Technology Education
Kenneth Jackson – HAA–Construction Tech
Cordell Paige- Exemplary – Construction Tec
Brandon Coburn – HAA — Drafting
Luke Killam – Exemplary — Drafting
Ashley McGhee – HAA — CCC

Pictured above (L-R):  Luke Killam, Lanie Eubanks, Olivia Bryan, Briana Halteman, Amanda Sellars, Ashley Snow and Brittney Brown were among the award winners at Northview High School’s Senior Honors Night.

Historic Day At Carver/Century And Molino Park

May 29, 2009

Today was a historic last day for North Escambia schools. Century will no longer has a public school, and Molino Park saw its first ever class of kindergarten students finish the fifth grade.

It was the last day the town of Century had  public school. With the last bell at Carver/Century K-8 School today, the school  was no more. It ended a legacy of Blackcat Pride that has included Century Elementary, Carver Middle and Century High School. A divided Escambia School Board voted 3-2 to close Carver/Century and consolidate it with Bratt Elementary and Ernest Ward Middle to save an estimated $600,000 per year.

Molino Park Elementary School opened in 2003, the product of the consolidation of Molino Elementary and Barrineau Park Elementary. The first class of kindergarten students at Molino Park in 2003 left  the school today having finished fifth grade. Today’s graduating fifth graders were the first class to have attended Molino Park their entire school careers.

Complete photo coverage of the final bell at Carver/Century K-8 will be posted Saturday morning here on

Tax Collector Gone, Courts To Stay In Century

May 29, 2009

taxclosedfront.jpgThursday was the last day of business at the Escambia County Tax Collector’s office in Century, but the Clerk of the Courts says his office will remain open.

Earlier this month, both county officials said they were closing their offices in the Billy G. Ward Courthouse. After a public outcry and an Escambia County Commission resolution against the closings,  Clerk of the Courts Ernie Lee Magaha announced that his office would remain open. But Tax Collector Jane Holley said that her office was still closing.

“It was a very difficult decision, and I mean that in a very heartfelt way,” Holley said, adding that Friday would be the first day in 32 years that there had not been a tax collector’s office in Century.  “It is a decision I did not take very lightly, but it is something I had to do.”

Holley said her final decision to close her Century office was based upon needed budget cutbacks and low utilization, especially over the last three years.

The next nearest Escambia County Tax Collector office is in Cantonment, and Holley said she would monitor the traffic at that office to determine how many customers were coming from Century, Walnut Hill, McDavid and surrounding areas. She said she would not rule out reopening the Century office in the future.

“But for now, we feel that we can still take care of the citizens in the Century area,” she said.

Most tax collector business can be conducted by mail, on the phone or online, Holley said. Hunting and fishing licenses, vehicle tags and titles can even be purchased by Escambia County residents at the Santa Rosa County Tax Collector’s office in Jay.

Tax Collector Services

  • Services as the Century branch of the Escambia County Tax Collector’s office have been redirected to the Cantonment branch, 470 South Highway 29. The Cantonment office offers all tax collector services including driver’s licenses by appointment.
  • Hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and until 6 p.m. on Wednesdays. Call 438-6500 ext. 252 for information and to schedule an appointment for a driver’s license.
  • For more information including how to make payments online, visit the Tax Collector’s website,

Confirmed Rabid Raccoon Found In North Escambia

May 29, 2009

raccoon.jpgA rabid raccoon has been found in North Escambia, prompting the Escambia County Health Department to urge caution among area residents.

The raccoon was shot and killed by a resident on Crabtree Church Road in Molino after it attacked his dog. That raccoon has been confirmed to have rabies, according to Ed Parent with the Escambia County Health Department. He did not know where on the 5-mile long Crabtree Church Road the incident occurred.

He said it is not believed that the raccoon had contact with any people other than the resident that shot it. The resident used gloves to handle the raccoon after it was dead, Parent said, and the raccoon did not infect the man. Additionally, Parent said there have been no reports of any animal bites in Escambia County at area hospitals during the past several weeks.

The dog bitten by the raccoon has been quarantined in a kennel and is being observed for any signs of the illness, but, so far, the health department said the dog appears to be fine.

“It is important that people stay away from raccoons,” Parent said. “They may or may not appear aggressive. You can’t just look at a raccoon and tell if it might be rabid by the way it acts.”

Anyone concerned about a raccoon on their property can call the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission at (850) 265-3676. In the event of an emergency only, call (850) 245-7710.  Anyone that finds a dead raccoon on their property should not touch the animal and should call one of the numbers immediately.

Tri-City Ledger, Atmore Advance Receive State Awards

May 29, 2009

Two area newspapers picked up multiple awards in the 2009 Alabama Press Association Better Newspaper Contest.

The Tri-City Ledger in Flomaton received five awards in their circulation size division, and The Atmore Advance received 10 in their category. There were 2,917 entries from 76 newspapers in the contest.

The Tri-City Ledger was honored five times:

  • Best Sports Page, third place
  • Best Local News Coverage, second place
  • Best Spot News Coverage, first place for “’We have to go now!’” by Joe Thomas & Janet Cooper (2/21/08)
  • Best Editorial, second place for “Unacceptable” by Joe Thomas (8/7/08)
  • Best Feature Photo, second place for “Picking out produce” by Janet Little Cooper (6/12/08)

The Atmore Advance was honored 10 times:

  • Best Presswork, third place
  • Best Lifestyle/Family Pages, third place
  • Best Local Economic Coverage, third place
  • Best Local Education Coverage, second place
  • Best Business Story or Column, second place for “Reaching New Heights” by Adam Prestridge (10/8/08)
  • Best Editorial, third place for “Hines, BOE operate in secret” by Adam Prestridge (4/2/08)
  • Best Local Sports Column, first place for “A big Little League memory” by Adam Prestridge (4/13/08)
  • Best News Photo, first place for “Marty’s takes a hit” by Adam Prestridge (4/20/08)
  • Best News Photo, second place for “Pritchett to fill seat” by Adam Prestridge (1/20/08)
  • Best Special Section, for “Horizons 2008” by staff (2/27/08)

The awards will be presented July 18 at APA’s 138th summer convention at Perdido Beach Resort in Orange Beach.

FDLE Returns To Walnut Hill In Police Shooting Investigation

May 29, 2009


The Florida Department of Law Enforcement returned Thursday afternoon to the scene of a weekend shooting by the Atmore Police Department.

Danny Ray Williams, 33, died Monday from wounds he received when he was shot by Atmore Police early Sunday morning in Walnut Hill. Atmore Police say Williams was seen leaving the scene of a shots fired call in Atmore when they gave chase. That chase came to an end on Highway 97 just south of Kansas Road when officers fired on Williams’ car after they say he attempted to run over them.

Thursday afternoon, investigators from the FDLE were back at the scene.  One investigator used a metal detector to search the area where Atmore Police said they fired the shots that led to Williams’ death, while another searched the grassy ditch and a portion of a wheat field. The location is just south of the spot where Williams’ car came to a stop in a muddy field.

Mike Morrison, spokesperson for FDLE, said that an investigation such as the one into Williams’ shooting can often take 45 to 60 days to complete. He said it was not unusual for investigators to return to a scene as they did Thursday afternoon in Walnut Hill. Once the FDLE investigation is complete, their findings will be turned over to the State Attorney’s Office for review.

To read an Atmore Police Department press release describing their version of the incident, click here.

To read the original story about the incident from Sunday morning, click here.

To read about Williams’ court record and outstanding warrant, click here.

For an exclusive photo gallery from the scene, click here.

Pictured above: Thursday afternoon, FDLE investigators were back at the scene of an Atmore Police shooting along Highway 97. Behind the investigators, the spot where Danny Day Williams reportedly backed into the wheat field. Pictured below: Car tracks in the area where Atmore Police say Williams turned around and tried to run over two officers. photos, click to enlarge.


Blog: A ‘Perfect’ 5, An Open Letter To Molino Park’s FCAT Best

May 29, 2009

It seems that a 5 is not always a 5.

Late last week, we ran a story entitled “Molino Park Student One Of Four In Escambia With Perfect FCAT Scores”. In that story we named Molino Park student Sarah Perritt as one of four students in all of Escambia County to score a “perfect 5″ on the reading and math third grade FCAT.

That story has created quite the uproar. Everyone in the Molino Park family is, as we are, very proud of Sarah. But it created a lot of confusion when letters went home to parents notifying them that their child too had score a 5 on both the reading and math FCAT.

That lead many a proud mom, dad and grandparents to contact us wondering why we did not name their child in the story.

The Escambia School District highlighted the fact that the four students had scored perfect on both the reading and math FCAT in a press release sent to the media. In most people’s minds, admittedly in our mind at first, that meant the students scored a 5 on both the reading and math FCATs. There is information available to us, to anyone, that will show you how many children scored a 5 on the reading and how many scored a 5 on the math. But nothing in the numbers made publicly available indicate how many of those scored the 5 on both. As it turns out, there are quite a few at Molino Park.

But a “perfect” score on the FCAT indicates that Sarah and the three other students in the county got each and every question correct in both subject areas. It is possible to miss some number of questions and not obtain a “perfect” score, but still receive a 5.

We would happily run the names of the students that scored a 5 at Molino Park and all the other schools that we cover, but schools are not allowed to release student FCAT scores.

We did want to clarify the story from last week and explain how the story came to be. We also want to offer our congratulations to the students that scored a 5 on the FCAT from any school, and offer our congratulations to each and every student that did their best on the FCAT, regardless of their score.

Molino Youth To Kick Off Summer

May 29, 2009

Youth in and around Molino will kick off summer in a big way after school today with Second Annual Summer Kick-Off.

The big event will be hosted by Impact Student Ministries, a ministry of Victory Assembly of God.

The Summer Kick-Off is open to all students sixth to 12th grade, and will be held from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m.. There will be free food and live entertainment. There is no admission cost. Call (850) 587-2295 for more details or visit

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