Friday, February 28, 2020

Louisville PD Makes Major Drug Arrests

On Thursday, February 27th at approximately 3:30 PM, a traffic stop was made on Park Street for improper tag display and tint violation. During the stop, approximately 76 grams of alleged Cocaine, 302 grams of Marijuana, 425 Hydrocodone pills, 869 Ecstasy pills, and 6 Oxycodone pills were found. The estimated street value of the amount seized was over $20,000. Also during the investigation, $26,902 cash and 2 firearms were discovered. 

 The 2 subjects were then taken to the Louisville Police Department for questioning and then to the Winston County Correctional Facility for booking. The 2 people arrested due to this incident were Warren Jerome Goss, age 51 of Louisville, MS and Arron Lashon Hughes age 27 of Louisville, MS.

Goss was charged with Trafficking in Controlled Substance (Ecstasy), Trafficking in Controlled Substance (Cocaine), and Trafficking in Controlled Substance (Hydrocodone). 

Hughes was charged with Trafficking in Controlled Substance (Ecstasy), Possession of Controlled Substance (Marijuana), and Possession of Firearm by a Convicted Felon. 

They both have an initial appearance scheduled on Friday, February 28th before Judge David Wilson in Louisville Municipal Court. LPD Chief of Police Sean Holdiness urges anyone with information on a crime or illegal activity to contact the Louisville Police Department at 662-773-3511 or Winston County CrimeStoppers at 662-773-9999. All information will be kept confidential and anonymous.

LPD press release

Presley Urges FCC to Adopt New 988 Dialing Code

Mississippi Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley has sent a letter to Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai urging the FCC to adopt a proposal creating a new three-digit phone number, 988, that will direct callers to suicide prevention and mental health services.

“Any actions we can take to improve access to suicide prevention and crisis intervention services will save lives and give hope to our communities affected by these crises,” Commissioner Presley said in the letter.

In 2018, Congress passed and the President signed into law the National Suicide Hotline Improvement Act. As part of that law, it required a study to determine the feasibility of “a simple, easy to remember, 3-digit dialing code” to connect users to suicide prevention and mental health crisis services. In December 2019, the FCC began proposing rules to implement the plans associated with the law and designate 988 as the official number.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, where 988 calls will be directed, is a national network of 163 crisis centers funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Currently, the Lifeline is available by calling 1-800-273-TALK and through online chats. In 2018, counselors that are part of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline answered over 2.2 million calls and over 100,000 online chats.

“Suicide prevention and mental health issues affect so many of our families and communities,” Commissioner Presley said. “Giving those who are struggling to overcome thoughts of suicide or mental health issues an easy to remember, direct line to immediate help should be something we in government act on swiftly.”

Thursday, February 27, 2020

MSU, ECCC Sign MOU for Bachelor of Applied Science Degree Program

Mississippi State University and East Central Community College in Decatur signed a memorandum of understanding on February 26, 2020 to formalize partnership programs for students enrolled in technical education programs.

The agreement outlines a pathway for ECCC students to complete MSU’s new Bachelor of Applied Science program, leveraging the strengths of both institutions to provide more opportunities in technical education and meet current and future workforce demands.

“We need more two-year and four-year graduates to move Mississippi forward,” MSU President Mark E. Keenum said. “By working together, I believe we’ll be able to better assist our fellow Mississippians in gaining the education they need to compete for the jobs of the 21st century. We are committed to helping all of our BAS students excel, succeed and earn a bachelor’s degree—building on the excellent foundation they have been given at ECCC.”

“East Central is pleased to partner with our colleagues at Mississippi State to expand educational opportunities for graduates with an associate of applied science (AAS) degree,” said ECCC President Billy Stewart. “I believe that the opportunity to earn the BAS degree will prove to be a win for the state of Mississippi, ECCC, MSU, and most importantly, our students, and we thank Dr. Keenum and his staff for providing this new educational pathway for them.”

MSU launched its BAS program in August, significantly expanding the university’s acceptance of technical credit from community colleges and military training. It is intended to serve the needs of adults who have completed a technical associate’s degree program through a community college or the military and need additional education to advance their careers.

The agreement between MSU and ECCC outlines which courses must be completed at each institution to fulfill degree requirements. An MSU advisor will assist in guiding ECCC students through BAS program pathways. Additionally, ECCC and MSU-Meridian will work together to provide classroom space for the delivery of synchronous online courses.

Students enrolled in the Bachelor of Applied Science program will have access to advisors from MSU-Meridian and MSU Online. Credits in the degree program can be earned through online or in-person courses, providing the flexibility that has become a hallmark of MSU’s nationally ranked online offerings.

For more on the Bachelor of Applied Science program, visit

For more on East Central Community College, visit

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Winston County Official Switches Political Party Affiliaton

Winston County Coroner Scott Gregory has announced he is switching political parties and will now be affiliated with the Republican Party. Gregory said, "The values of the Democrat Party have drifted so far to the left and are now a huge departure from what the party stood for when I first was elected to public office. As a result, I felt like I had no choice. Today's Democrat Party no longer even remotely reflects my personal values and, in my opinion, neither do they reflect the values of the vast majority of the citizens of Winston County."

Winston County Republican Party Chairman Mark Forsman said, "We welcome Coroner Gregory to our party. Ours is a large tent and we have plenty of room under it for other elected officials who, like Scott, have been pushed to the point of no return. Our party's platform pertaining to the rights of the unborn, citizens’ rights to bear arms afforded by the 2nd amendment, and even providing secure borders for our citizens are only three of the major differences between the two major political parties."

Forsman noted that numerous county officials in several of our neighboring counties who were elected under the banner of the Democrat Party in recent years have switched to the Republican Party. "As Coroner Gregory has said, a political party can only move so far away from the core values of the citizens before elected officials have to seriously consider their party affiliation,"

Forsman said. "We believe this trend will continue and we will gladly welcome those who wish to join us here in the Grand Ole Party."

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Fannie Lou Hamer, a Black History Story Voter Suppression and State-sanctioned Violence. theme for 2020 Black History Month is African Americans and the Vote. None more than civil rights leader Fannie Lou Hamer bore witness to the violence of Jim Crow and demanded inclusion of black delegates in the Democratic Party. Mrs. Hamer endured much violence in her pursuit of getting African Americans registered to vote. On August 22, 2020, it will be 52 years since Mrs. Hamer delivered her “I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired,” speech. She described the scare tactics and African Americans lack of access to the Democratic Party.

She had traveled from Mississippi to Atlanta, GA to the Democratic National Convention (DNC) on behalf of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party. This organization challenged the all-white Mississippi delegation to the DNC. Millions of viewers heard her speech which was about voter suppression and violence in Mississippi against those who were registering African Americans to vote.

Black History Exhibit Reception Held

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Honoree Rev. Sylvester Miller and his family at the Black History Exhibit Reception

Friends of Dean Park, Inc. (FODP) sponsored a Black History Exhibit and Reception at Winston County Library on Saturday, February 22, 2020. Rev. Sylvester Miller was honored as a civil rights worker, pastor of two churches, businessman, and owner of Lee's Restaurant in Louisville. The exhibit will be available throughout the month of February. The theme was African Americans and the Vote – the national theme.

The group of approximately 70 people was welcomed by librarian Beth Edwards. Sandra Howze introduced the honoree Rev. Miller. He proceeded to share many stories of his encounters with discrimination in Mississippi as well as in Flint, Michigan when he and family migrated there. He shed tears as he talked about his time in the military and how he was treated after returning to the states to not have the freedom that he fought for. He also shared his success as an educated African American male who taught school for 32 years in Michigan. He talked about his local business as well as businesses that he and his wife had in Michigan. He is the owner of Lee’s Restaurant of Louisville and invited people to visit. It is available to rent for parties, reunions, meeting, and there is an All You Can Eat Buffet on Sundays.

Young adult Tremond Miller, a coach in the Starkville School District, spoke about voting as it relates to what Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and others marched about. He spoke about the Voters Rights Bill of 1965. Dr. King’s speech given May 17, 1957 during the Prayer Pilgrimage March about Give us the Ballot was mentioned.

Rosa Sanders was present for the signing of her book A Journey without A Destination which was published November 2019. It can be found on Amazon. According to a preview by the author, the book is about three sisters who lived in South Carolina who were sold as slaves to a master in Mississippi. They were able to escape from him, ride a ferry as Stole-Away, swim the Mississippi River, hide in the woods and make it to a place that they had never heard of. They worked in fields with other slaves until they were able to travel to Mississippi. They married and started a community of their own which is now called the Hathorn Community in Noxapater, MS.

Elmetra Patterson, curator of the exhibit and president of FODP, gave a synopsis of the exhibit and a tour of the library followed. She thanked Walmart and Atty. Linda Hampton for their donations which helped with food, drinks and art supplies for the exhibit.

Since the theme this year is African Americans and the Vote, FODP acknowledged the Winston County Voter and Education League's achievements throughout the month of February. The league’s success stories include:

• Partnered with others in a lawsuit to redistrict the county which resulted in two black majority districts

• Successfully worked to elect the first black candidates, deceased Supervisor Larry Miller and deceased Election Commissioner Helen Hathorn in District 4

• Successfully negotiated with the NAACP and Louisville officials that led to changes from at large wards to 2 majority black wards. This led to the election of the first black alderman, Billy Metts and later, deceased Rev. D. A. Moore, Bessie Love and Eugene Crosby

• Successfully worked to elect the first black school board member, Charles Holmes; followed by Annette Jernigan, Larry Baker and Cathy Edwards

• Supported a strong slate of minority candidates pursuing the offices of Circuit Clerk, Chancery Clerk, Tax Assessor, Justice Court Judges and Sheriff. This effort resulted in the election of Robert Beck as Justice Court Judge and Walter Coburn as sheriff.

The Winston County Voter and Education League is seeking new members and volunteers to help register and educate voters for the upcoming election which is crucial to our community.

The FODP thanked all who attended. If you are interested in joining for their work in the community and at Dean Park, please contact them at: Friends of Dean Park, Inc., P. O. Box 365, Louisville, MS 39339, 510.672-2106.

Submitted by: Elmetra Patterson

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 Rev. Miller with his spouse Tanesha Hampton-Miller

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Rosa A. Sanders, author, speaks about her book

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Coach Tremond Miller speaks about voting

Monday, February 24, 2020

ECCC Baseball Gets Back on Winning Track With Sweep of East Mississippi

Gavin Bailey
The East Central Community College Warriors put an end to a four-game losing streak with a baseball doubleheader sweep over the visiting East Mississippi Lions on Sunday, Feb. 23, at the Clark-Gay Baseball Complex in Decatur.

East Central came from behind to win the opener 6-4, and then used a big fifth inning to win game two 9-1.

East Central is now 4-4 on the season. The EMCC Lions are 0-6.

East Central was scheduled to hold its annual Rush Invitational over the weekend, but rain during the week forced the cancellation of that event setting up the Sunday doubleheader with EMCC.

A two-run double by sophomore second baseman Eli Harrison (Newton County) in the bottom of the eighth inning pushed the winning run across the plate to give East Central the 6-4 win in game one. Trailing 4-3 heading to the bottom of the eighth, Harrison doubled with two men on and no outs to give East Central a 5-4 lead. Freshman third baseman Amani Larry (Bossier City, La., Parkway) singled in Harrison to give the Warriors an insurance run and the 6-4 final margin.

Sophomore catcher Gavin Bailey (Newton County) gave East Central an early 1-0 lead in game one with a solo home run in the bottom of the third. Larry also had an RBI single in the fifth and sophomore right fielder Jesse Boydstun (Winston Academy) singled in a run in the seventh.

Seven East Central pitchers held the Lions to five hits in the opener. The Warriors collected 11 hits in the victory.

The Warriors led game two 4-2 when five runs crossed the plate in the bottom of the fifth to put the game away. Boydstun had an RBI single and sophomore center fielder Dakota Kennedy (Choctaw Central) drove in two runs with a triple in the inning. Freshman left fielder Clayton Cook (Mize) had three RBI in the game with a single and two sacrifice flies. Freshman catcher R.J. Fletcher (St. Martin) had an RBI double in the game.

Sophomore right-hander Walker Johnson (East Webster) got the win on the mound. He threw the first five innings and gave up just three hits while striking out eight batters. East Central pounded out 11 hits in the seven-inning contest.

Next up for the Warriors is Northeast at home for a doubleheader Wednesday, Feb. 26, starting at 3 p.m. at the Clark-Gay Baseball Complex on campus. Coastal Alabama-South will visit Decatur for a doubleheader on Saturday, Feb. 29. First pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m.

Friday, February 21, 2020

ECCC to Hold Second Annual District Wide Day of Service March 13

The second annual EC Cares for our Community day, a time when East Central Community College faculty, staff, and students will give back to the communities in the college’s five-county district of Leake, Neshoba, Newton, Scott and Winston counties, is scheduled for Friday, March 13, 2020.

“Community Partnerships is one of five institutional commitments of our 2020 Vision strategic plan at East Central Community College,” said Dr. Billy Stewart, ECCC president. “Setting aside this day to allow our faculty, staff, and students to volunteer in the communities of our district not only meets that strategic initiative, but allows us to give back to and engage the people in our communities as well.”

Service locations for the second EC Cares for our Community day include Coyote Hills Equine Rescue & Therapeutic Riding and Hope Missions, both located in Newton; Carlisle Crisis Center in Forest, New Beginnings Adult Day Care and Neshoba Baptist Association, both in Philadelphia; City of Carthage Parks and Recreation and Main Street Chamber of Leake County, both in Carthage; Winston County Library in Louisville, and Nanih Waiya Community Park in Nanih Waiya.

Service activities will include cleaning, sorting and organizing, pressure washing, building raised flower beds, painting, weeding and mulching, general yard work, and shelving and organizing books, among other requested tasks.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

East Central’s Braelyn Boykin Named MACJC Softball Pitcher of the Week

East Central Community College sophomore pitcher Braelyn Boykin capped off a big first weekend of the 2020 season by being selected as the Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges Softball Pitcher of the Week.

The product of Mize High School compiled a 2-0 record with one save as the No. 15 ranked East Central Lady Warriors opened the season with a 4-0 record in games played Feb. 15-16.

She pitched a one-hit shutout in the season-opening 10-0 win over Coastal Alabama-North in Decatur Feb. 15, and came on in the seventh inning of the 4-2 game two win to pick up a save.

The next day she also got the win as East Central defeated East Central College (Mo.) 13-3 in the Northeast TigerFest in Booneville. She pitched the first three innings of that game and gave up no runs on two hits.

East Central will next play five games over two days in the Rush Invitational in Meridian Feb. 21-22. The Lady Warriors will face No. 13 Trinity Valley (Texas) at 9 a.m. and San Jacinto College-South (Texas) at 11 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 21, and then Parkland College (Ill.) at 9 a.m., No. 2 LSU-Eunice (La.) at 11 a.m., and Bishop State (Ala.) at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 22.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Lady Warriors Win, Warriors Fall in MACJC Basketball at Hinds

The East Central Community College Lady Warriors completed the season sweep of the Hinds Lady Bulldogs with a 62-57 win Monday, Feb. 17, while the Warriors fell to the Bulldogs for the second time this season, this time by a score of 73-68.

The games were played at J.D. Boyd Gym on Hinds’ Utica campus.

Sophomore guard Jariyah Covington (Starkville) led the Lady Warriors with 15 points, while sophomore guard Mylisha Hammond (McComb) added 10.

The ECCC Lady Warriors improve to 10-12 overall and 5-8 in the South Division. The Hinds Lady Bulldogs are now 3-17 overall and 1-12 in the division.

Sophomore guard Kareem Thompson (Florence, Ala.) led the Warriors with 16 points, while sophomore forward JaQuarius Smith (Noxubee County) and freshman guard JaMichael Wilson (Rayville, La.) scored 15 and 10, respectively.

The Warriors fall to 9-13 overall and 4-9 in the MACJC South Division. Hinds is 13-7 overall and 8-5 in the division.

The East Central teams will play their final games of the season on Sophomore Night against Southwest on Thursday, Feb 20, in Brackeen-Wood Gym in Decatur. Those games tip off at 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. The sophomore basketball players, cheerleaders, Centralettes dance team, and Color Guard will be recognized during the evening.

Sophomore Night is a “White Out” game and all East Central fans are encouraged to wear white.

The games can be heard on WKOZ “Cruisin” 98.3 or watched via live stream video at

Shelton State Sweeps East Central in Baseball Action

The visiting Shelton State Community College Bucs picked up a pair of victories over host East Central Community College in baseball action Sunday, Feb. 16, at the Clark-Gay Baseball Complex on campus.

The visitors from Tuscaloosa, Ala., won the opener 4-1 and came from behind to win the nightcap 8-4.

With the losses, East Central falls to 2-2 on the season. The NJCAA Division I Shelton State Bucs improve to 5-2.

In the opener, the Warriors managed just four hits to 10 for Shelton State. East Central’s lone run came on a steal of home by sophomore second baseman Roper Ball (Nanih Waiya) in the bottom of the seventh to make the score 2-1. Ball had doubled to open the inning.

Shelton State added two runs in the top of the eighth to seal the win.

A two-run homer in the top of the fourth gave the Bucs the lead in the seven-inning game two. A couple of home runs in the bottom of the frame gave East Central a 3-2 lead. Freshman shortstop 

Amani Larry (Bossier, La., Parkway) led off the inning with a solo shot and freshman utility player Branson Sharpley (Taylorsville) had a two-run homer later in the inning.

The Warriors’ lead was short-lived as Shelton State moved back in front 6-3 in the top of the fifth with a pair of homers. An RBI single by freshman designated hitter Jesse Boydstun (Winston Academy) in the bottom of the sixth pulled East Central to within 6-4, before the Bucs scored two more in the top of the seventh for the 8-4 win.

The Warriors travel to the state of Florida to take on Pensacola State on Tuesday, Feb. 18. First pitch of the doubleheader is 2 p.m.

The next home action is the Rush Invitational to be held at the Clark-Gay Baseball Complex Friday through Sunday, Feb. 21-23. East Central will face Bossier Parish (La.) at 11 a.m. on Feb. 22 and then Jefferson College (Mo.) at 7 p.m. that night. Other teams participating during the weekend include East Mississippi, Mississippi Gulf Coast, and Wallace State (Hanceville, Ala.).

Most all home games can be heard on WKOZ “Cruisin” 98.3 or watched via live stream video at

Monday, February 17, 2020

ECCC Softball Remains Undefeated With Two Wins In Northeast TigerFest

A day after sweeping its season-opening doubleheader against Coastal Alabama-North, the No. 15 East Central Community College softball team traveled north Sunday, Feb. 16, to compete in a couple of games in the Northeast Mississippi Community College TigerFest held in Booneville.

The Lady Warriors moved to a perfect 4-0 on the young season with a five-inning 13-3 run-rule win over East Central College (Mo.) in the opener. East Central then defeated Southwest Tennessee 5-0 in the second game shortened to four innings due to time limits on tournament games.

East Central scored in every inning in the opener while collecting 12 hits. Sophomore designated hitter Annabell Watkins (Leake Academy) knocked in four runs with a double and a three-run homer. Freshman second baseman Landree Amis (Newton County) continued her hot start to the season with a single, double, and triple and three RBI. Freshman third baseman Zharia Richardson (Harrison Central) had two hits and two RBI.

Sophomore Braelyn Boykin (Mize) moved to 2-0 in the circle. She pitched the first three innings, giving up no runs on just two hits and three strikeouts.

Game two was scoreless heading to the bottom of the third when sophomore left fielder Olivia Houston (Northwest Rankin) and sophomore catcher Anna McNeer (Canton Academy) opened the inning with singles. After a walk to Richardson, Watkins brought in the first run with a sacrifice fly. Freshman right fielder Sidney Rone (Ethel) then made the score 3-0 with a two-run double. The fourth run of the inning came in on a fielder’s choice.

East Central added a final run in the bottom of the fourth on a Houston single followed by a Richardson double.

Sophomore Brooklyn King (George County) picked up the win giving up just three hits in the shutout.

East Central will next play five games over two days in the Rush Invitational in Meridian Feb. 21-22. The Lady Warriors will face No. 13 Trinity Valley (Texas) at 9 a.m. and San Jacinto College-South (Texas) at 11 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 21, and then Parkland College (Ill.) at 9 a.m., No. 2 LSU-Eunice (La.) at 11 a.m., and Bishop State (Ala.) at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 22.

The next home action is not until March 6 when Coahoma visits for an MACJC conference doubleheader beginning at 3 p.m. at the Softball Park on campus.

Most all home games can be heard on WKOZ “Cruisin” 98.3 or watched via live stream video at

Friday, February 14, 2020

ECCC Basketball Teams Sweep Visiting Meridian

The East Central Community College basketball teams got back in the win column with a sweep of the teams from Meridian Community College Thursday, Feb. 13, in Brackeen-Wood Gym on the campus in Decatur.

The East Central Lady Warriors opened the evening with a come-from-behind 62-55 win. The Warriors followed with an 85-82 win over the Meridian Eagles.

The sweep avenged a pair of losses when Meridian hosted East Central back on Jan. 21.

The ECCC Lady Warriors outscored the Lady Eagles 35-27 in the second half after trailing at the intermission. Sophomore guard Jariyah Covington (Starkville) led a balanced scoring attack for East Central with 15 points.

The Lady Warriors improve to 9-12 overall and 4-8 in the South Division. The Meridian Lady Eagles are now 7-14 overall and 4-8 in the division.

In the men’s action, East Central nearly let a 13-point halftime lead slip away against the Eagles. The Warriors led the entire game until Meridian tied the score at 80-80 with under a minute to play. But a big three-pointer from the corner by freshman guard Brandon Tilley (Hattiesburg, Oak Grove) with 20 seconds to play and two free throws from sophomore forward JaQuarius Smith (Noxubee County) helped seal the Warrior win.

Meridian hit 30 of 34 free throws in the game, including 11 in a row late in the game. East Central was 14 of 18 from the free throw line.

Freshman guard JaMichael Wilson (Rayville, La.) led East Central with 24 points. Smith added 20, freshman guard Lee Cotton (Cleveland Central) scored 14, and freshman guard Kareem Thompson (Florence, Ala.) had 12.

With the win, East Central is now 9-12 overall and 4-8 in the MACJC South Division. Meridian is 8-13 overall and 3-9 in the division.

Having been eliminated from postseason play, the East Central teams will close out their seasons next week. The Warriors and Lady Warriors will face Hinds in Utica at 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 17, before closing out the season with Sophomore Night and a  “White Out” game against Southwest on Thursday, Feb 20, in Brackeen-Wood Gym. Those games also tip off at 5:30 and 7:30 p.m.

All home games can be heard on WKOZ “Cruisin” 98.3 or watched via live stream video at

LeAnn Sanders Shelton Book Event

The Winston County Library recently hosted Pickens County, AL author LeAnn Sanders Shelton for an event featuring her book “Red Stitches”. The book talks about losing her arm as a child in a lawn mower accident and going on to overcome so many obstacles in order to achive her passion – playing competitive softball. “LeAnn is a true inspiration,” said librarian Beth Edwards. “She played pitcher, batter and outfielder and was inducted into the Dixie Softball Hall of Fame.” She calls her book “Red Stitches” because it was the red stitches on a softball that held her life together after the accident.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Rev. Sylvester Miller honored at Black History Exhibit Reception

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Rev. Sylvester Miller, III at Lee’s Restaurant
The Friends of Dean Park, Inc. is sponsoring a Black History Exhibit at the Winston County Library throughout the month starting February 5th. Rev. Sylvester Miller, owner of Lee’s Restaurant, will be honored. The Reception will be Saturday, February 22, 2020, 9:30 a.m. – 12 Noon. Rosa Sanders will be there signing her newly published book.

Rev. Miller of Louisville, Mississippi was chosen to be honored because he has a rich history in civil rights, especially regarding voters’ rights. He is a businessman who has returned to Louisville after migrating to Flint, Michigan for years. He returned to Louisville in 2018 with his wife Mary Lee Anderson Miller who passed shortly after they moved. He is the owner of Lee’s Restaurant which is named after his deceased wife.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

ECCC Baseball Opens 2020 Season With Sweep of Mississippi Delta

East Central outfielder Jesse Boydstun 
slides into third
The East Central Community College Warriors scored a pair of 10-2 wins to open the 2020 baseball season with a sweep over the Mississippi Delta Trojans Sunday, Feb. 9, at the Clark-Gay Baseball Complex on the campus in Decatur.

ECCC scored in every inning on its way to a 10-2 run-rule win in the opener that was called after seven innings. The Warriors used an eight run bottom of the fifth inning in the seven-inning game two to take another 10-2 win.

Four ECCC pitchers combined to hold Mississippi Delta to two runs on just five hits in the opener. Sophomore right-hander Tanner Knight (Eupora) got the win. The Louisiana Tech signee pitched the first three innings and gave up no runs on two hits with five strikeouts.

East Central collected 10 hits in game one, with sophomore second baseman Roper Ball (Nanih Wayia), freshman right fielder Jesse Boydstun (Winston Academy), and freshman first baseman Stephen Wolf (Madison, St. Joseph Catholic) each with two hits. Boydstun knocked in two runs.

The Warriors stole eight bases in the win, with Ball, Wolf, and sophomore left fielder Dakota Kennedy (Choctaw) with two each.

Kennedy got East Central on the scoreboard first in game two with a full count leadoff homer to left field in the bottom of the first. The Warriors led 2-1 heading to the bottom of the fifth when eight runs crossed the plate. Boydstun had a two-run single, Kennedy a two-run double, and freshman shortstop Amani Larry (Bossier, La., Parkway) an RBI single in the frame. Ball stole two more bases in game two.

Sophomore right-hander Walker Johnson (East Webster) had a good outing on the mound to open the season, throwing the first four innings. He gave up one run on three hits with six strikeouts.

ECCC opens the season 2-0, while the Mississippi Delta Trojans are 0-2.

East Central will next host Shelton State (Ala.) in a doubleheader beginning at 2 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 14.
The Warriors then travel to the state of Florida to take on Pensacola State on Tuesday, Feb. 18. First pitch of the doubleheader is 2 p.m.

All home games can be heard on WKOZ “Cruisin” 98.3 or watched via live stream video at

ECCC to Officially Open New Football Operations Center with Ribbon Cutting

East Central Community College will officially open its new Warrior Hall football operations center with a ribbon cutting ceremony at 1 p.m. on Thursday, March 5, on the campus in Decatur.

The 12,300-square-foot facility is located just outside the north end zone of Warrior Field at Bailey Stadium.

The ceremony will include remarks by ECCC President Dr. Billy Stewart, Board Chair Dr. Jimmy Hollingsworth, Head Football Coach Ken Karcher, and Director of Athletics Paul Nixon in the Thomas E. Hannah and Ray E. Hannah Team Meeting Room, followed by the ribbon cutting and self-guided tours.

Warrior Hall contains locker rooms for players and for coaches, a team meeting room, position conference rooms, coaches’ offices, an equipment room, a players’ lounge, and a laundry room. It will also house a state-of-the-art training room with hydrotherapy pool to be used by student-athletes in all nine varsity sports at the college.

The architect for Warrior Hall was Eley Guild Hardy Architects of Biloxi. The contractor was J&J Contractors Inc. of Collinsville.

Monday, February 10, 2020

2020 ECCC Baseball Team

Members of the 2020 East Central Community College baseball team and their respective high schools include (front row, from left) sophomore catcher Gavin Bailey, Newton County; sophomore pitcher Braxton Rose, Newton County Academy; freshman infielder Kiel Reed, Brandon, Hartfield Academy; freshman outfielder/pitcher Tri Vaughan, Benoit, Washington School; sophomore catcher/infielder Eli Harrison, Newton County; freshman infielder Ian Barjam, Santa Domingo, Dominican Republic; freshman pitcher Grant Johnson, Hernando; freshman pitcher Calvin McClendon, Leake Central; freshman pitcher/infielder Hunter Barrett, Sumrall; and freshman outfielder/pitcher Robert Sanford, Seminary; (middle row, from left) head coach Neal Holliman; assistant coach Matt Mitchell; freshman infielder Benjamin Luckett, Yazoo County; freshman outfielder Clayton Cook, Mize; freshman utility player Branson Sharpley, Taylorsville; sophomore infielder/pitcher Roper Ball, Nanih Waiya; freshman infielder Amani Larry, Bossier, La., Parkway; freshman catcher R.J. Fletcher, St. Martin; redshirt freshman outfielder/pitcher Courtland Posey, Port Gibson/Hinds Community College; and assistant coach Adam Chamblee; and (back row, from left) freshman pitcher Gates Pee, Clinton; sophomore pitcher Walker Johnson, East Webster; freshman outfielder/pitcher Jesse Boydstun, Winston Academy; freshman pitcher Jeremy Martin, Slidell, La., Northshore; sophomore pitcher Tanner Knight, Eupora; freshman outfielder/pitcher Conner Hicks, Stringer; freshman infielder Dylan Bond, Lewisburg; sophomore outfielder Dakota Kennedy, Choctaw Central; and freshman infielder/outfielder Stephen Wolf, Madison, St. Joseph Catholic.

Saturday, February 8, 2020

ECCC Football Welcomes 20 New Players During National Signing Day

East Central Community College head football coach Ken Karcher announced the addition of 20 new members to the Warrior football team on National Signing Day Wednesday, Feb. 5. The newcomers are all high school seniors.

“We are excited to welcome these 20 young men to our football family,” said Karcher. “Our staff once again did an excellent job in finding young men who are good football players and a good fit our mission at East Central. We are looking forward to working with each one of them. We will continue to look to meet other needs as we work through the spring.”

Players signing with ECCC Feb. 5 included:

  • Rish Alford, a 5-9, 195-pound linebacker from Houston High School.
  • Ethan Bond, a 6-3, 270-pound offensive lineman from Columbia High School.
  • Keyser Booth, a 5-7, 155-pound running back from Jefferson Davis County High School in Bassfield.
  • Juke Boozer, a 6-3, 190-pound wide receiver from Rockmart High School, Ga.
  • Kyle Brewer, a 5-11, 190-pound athlete from Magnolia Heights School in Senatobia.
  • Demarquese Gibson, a 5-11, 190-pound running back from Grenada High School.
  • Ray Gibson, a 6-2, 270-pound defensive lineman from Neshoba Central High School.
  • Eli Gooden, a 6-0, 270-pound offensive lineman from Hartfield Academy in Flowood.
  • Kristian Hopkins, a 5-11, 200-pound linebacker from Louisville High School.
  • Kedrick Horton, a 6-3, 235-pound tight end from Mize High School.
  • Manuel Hillman, a 6-0, 185-pound long snapper from Petal High School.
  • Josten James, a 5-9, 165-pound defensive back from Stone High School in Wiggins.
  • Phameko James, a 6-2, 185-pound wide receiver from Hazlehurst High School.
  • Ke’Sean Johnson, a 5-11, 205-pound athlete from Quitman High School.
  • Sadarion Magee, a 5-10, 170-pound defensive back from Columbia High School.
  • RJ Proctor, a 6-1, 260-pound defensive lineman from Petal High School.
  • Michael Rush, a 6-1, 285-pound offensive lineman from Union High School.
  • Deandre Shorts, a 5-10, 170-pound defensive back from Jefferson Davis County High School in Bassfield.
  • Kevin Walters, a 6-1, 300-pound defensive lineman from Petal High School.
  • Larry Wilson, a 5-9, 160-pound running back from Hazlehurst High School. 
The East Central Community College Warriors open the 2020 season on Thursday, Aug. 27, when they host East Mississippi Community College at 6:30 p.m. in Bailey Stadium on the ECCC campus in Decatur.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Several Mississippi Counties Top List of Most Disadvantaged Areas in the Country

Mississippi communities are among the most disadvantaged in the nation, based on income levels, health and social mobility, according to a recent study.

A recent analysis by researchers at the University of Michigan’s Poverty Solutions initiative and Princeton University’s Center for Research on Child Wellbeing created a nationwide index for counties it found to be at a "deep disadvantage" in the country.

The study looked at poverty and deep poverty rates, life expectancy and low birth rates, among other factors.
It revealed five separate counties in Mississippi in the top 10 list as the most poor areas in the nation.

Those counties and their rank are:
  • 3. Claiborne County
  • 4. Issaquena County
  • 5. Holmes County
  • 7. Leflore County
  • 9. Coahoma County
The study also listed a total 21 counties in the state in its top 100 index, which represents more than 20% of the entire country. 

Child hunger in Mississippi is real: Let's solve the food insecurity problem.

The study— in its analysis— found three trends:

  •  Rural counties are much more likely to be disadvantaged. Of the top 100 most disadvantaged communities, 80 are rural—including 19 rural counties in Mississippi. Only nine are cities. This finding is significant because rural areas are more likely to lack infrastructure and investment to alleviate poverty.
  • Disadvantage is clustered and largely driven by historical context. Regions with high levels of disadvantage include the Mississippi Delta, the Cotton Belt, Appalachia, Tribal Nation Lands, areas near the Texas-Mexico border and the Rust Belt cities of Cleveland; Detroit; Flint, Michigan; and Gary, Indiana. One theme across these areas of deep disadvantage is a long history of racial and environmental exploitation.
  • Disparities in health and economic outcomes: In terms of health, people living in the most disadvantaged areas are more likely to die a full 10 years before their counterparts in the most advantaged areas. The average poverty rate of the 100 most disadvantaged communities (34.8%) is more than four times higher than the poverty rate among the 100 most advantaged communities (7.3%).
All five Mississippi counties in the top 10 are along the Mississippi River. Four of the counties in the top 10 are located in South Dakota, home to the Native American Sovereign Tribal Nations.

Give Us the Ballot

C:\Users\elmetra patterson\Documents\Martin Luther King speaks photo.jpg
On May 17, 1957, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led a group of 25,000 on The Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom. It was a non-violent demonstration in Washington, DC and an early event of the African-American Civil Rights Movement, especially for the right to vote.

One of his least known speeches was made that day. It is so appropriate today because of the theme for this year’s Black History Month – African American and the Vote. His speech is named “Give Us the Ballot” which is the demand followed by the different changes that voting rights for African Americans will affect. His call for voting rights for African Americans is not only morally right but will lead to change for the better for all of America. He encouraged the follower to show love and understanding and abstain from violence. His speech to the president of the United States and every member of Congress asking them to give African Americans the right to vote went as follows:

Give us the ballot, and we will no longer have to worry the federal government about our basic rights.

Give us the ballot, and we will no longer plead to the federal government for passage of an anti-lynching law; we will by the power of our vote write the law on the statute books of the South and bring an end to the dastardly acts of the hooded perpetrators of violence.

Give us the ballot, and we will transform the salient misdeeds of bloodthirsty mobs into the calculated good deeds of orderly citizens.

Give us the ballot, and we will fill our legislative halls with men of goodwill and send to the sacred halls of Congress men who will not sign a “S o u t h e r n M a n i f e s t o” b e c a u s e of their devotion to the manifesto of justice.

Give us the ballot, and we will place judges on the benches of the South who will do justly and love mercy, and we will place at the head of the southern states governors who will, who have felt not only the tang of the human, but the glow of the Divine.

Give us the ballot, and we will quietly and nonviolently, without rancor or bitterness, implement the Supreme Court’s decision of May seventeenth, 1954.

On May 17, 1954, the Supreme Court issued its landmark Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka ruling, which declared that racially segregated public schools were inherently unequal. The justices ruled unanimously that racial segregation of children in public schools was unconstitutional. The decision overturned the 1896 Supreme Court case Plessy v. Ferguson. The Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom was exactly three years after the 1954 decision.

Dr. King stated, “In the midst of these prevailing conditions, we come to Washington today pleading with the president and members of Congress to provide a strong, moral, and courageous leadership for a situation that cannot permanently be evaded. We come humbly to say to the men in the forefront of our government that the civil rights issue is not an ephemeral, evanescent domestic issue that can be kicked about by reactionary guardians of the status quo; it is rather an eternal moral issue which may well determine the destiny of our nation in the ideological struggle with communism.”

Submitted by: Jackie "Rip" Eichelberger

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Black History Celebration and Theme with Friends of Dean Park, Inc.

C:\Users\elmetra patterson\Pictures\Carter G. Woodson 2.jpgCarter G. Woodson
Carter G. Woodson
founder of Black History Month

Black History Month is the annual celebration of achievements by African Americans and a time for recognizing the central role of blacks in U.S. history. It is the brainchild of noted historian Carter G. Woodson and other prominent African Americans. Woodson believed that his role was to use black history and culture as a weapon in the struggle for racial uplift.

February is Black History Month and the 2020 National Theme for is "African Americans and the Vote," according to the Association for the Study of African American Life and History. The theme highlights the sesquicentennial (150 years) and centennial (100 years) of the fifteenth and nineteenth amendment. The theme will highlight suffrage of Blacks throughout American history. Blacks have been denied the right to vote by various means, e.g., poll taxes, memorizing the constitution, criminal records, property ownership, Voters ID and today there are conniving methods that are more sophisticated. Voter suppression is widely spread in the United States today as a method of denying the right to vote to Blacks and some others.

In 1870, non-white men and freed male slaves are guaranteed the right to vote by the Fifteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Disenfranchisement after the Reconstruction Era began soon afterwards. Southern states suppressed the voting rights of black and poor white voters through Jim Crow Laws. The Jim Crow laws enforced racial segregation in the Southern United States. They were enacted in the late 19th and early 20th centuries after the Reconstruction period. Jim Crow was enforced until 1965 with the Voters Right Act. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 is a landmark piece of federal legislation in the United States that prohibits racial discrimination in voting.

The Friends of Dean Park, Inc. is sponsoring a Black History Exhibit at the Winston County Library 301 Park Street, Louisville, MS, throughout the month starting February 5th. Elder Sylvester Miller and Lee’s Restaurant will be honored. The Reception will be Saturday, February 22, 2020, 9:30 a.m. – 12 noon. Rosa Sanders will be there signing her newly published book. We have a special guest speaker to be announced later.

Submitted by: Elmetra Patterson

Presley Warns Public of Car Sales Scam on Facebook

Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley is alerting the public of a scam affecting businesses in the Northern District involving car sales on Facebook.

The scammers are creating Facebook pages and posing as real local businesses, often showing some of the same inventory as being available from them. The scammer collects a sum of money, usually a down payment, and leaves the buyer to collect an automobile from the legitimate business. The legitimate business, in turn, has received no money from the buyer and is unaware of the scam until the buyer shows up to collect the automobile they believe they purchased legitimately.

Here are a few things to look at to help determine if a Facebook page is possibly a scam page:

  • The business page’s name may be slightly different. For instance, instead of John Doe Auto, it could be JD Auto or Jon Doe Cars.
  • Information to contact the business could be suspicious. For instance, a local dealer providing a different number than that listed on their website or a personal or private email address that is not listed on the dealership’s website.
  • The prices of vehicles offered are far lower than the current market value.
  • Is the page itself suspicious? Is it a newly created page? Are there multiple pages found similar to the real one?
  • Check to see if people have left reviews of the business on the page. Are people listing they are satisfied with the business?

“If a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is—no matter if it’s in-person, over the internet, or otherwise,” said Commissioner Presley. “With new ways to search for deals and sales online and through Facebook and other social media, there is an opportunity to connect people in communities about what neighbors and others around the area have for sale. But it also presents the prime opportunity for scams and scammers to prey on folks just trying to get a good deal.”

Commissioner Presley continued: “I recommend doing a Google search and verifying the information matches search results, like the dealership’s website or other legitimate websites. And as we regularly advise on all scams, never give personal information over the phone, through Facebook, or on suspicious websites. And if they’re asking for money to be sent over the phone, through social media, or on the internet, that’s also another sign it could be a scam activity. Be alert and vigilant.”If you have been a victim of this scam with a monetary loss, please report it to your local authorities or to Commissioner Presley’s office. To report a scam to Commissioner Presley’s office, please call 1-800-637-7722.

Monday, February 3, 2020

2020 ECCC Softball Team

Members of the 2020 East Central Community College softball team and their respective high schools include (front row, from left) sophomore pitcher Brooklyn King, George County; sophomore utility player Katelyn Morson, Vicksburg, Warren Central; sophomore utility player Kaylee Webb, Ruston, La.; sophomore infielder Annabell Watkins, Leake Academy; sophomore outfielder Olivia Houston, Northwest Rankin; sophomore pitcher/infielder Braelyn Boykin, Mize; sophomore catcher/infielder Anna McNeer, Canton Academy; and sophomore infielder Kailee Swindle, Hattiesburg, Presbyterian Christian; (middle row, from left) freshman manager Cambre Ellis, Neshoba Central; sophomore manager Callie Roach, Louisville; freshman catcher/outfielder Landree Amis, Newton County; freshman infielder Zharia Richardson, Harrison Central; freshman outfielder Savannah Jones, Leake Academy; freshman catcher/outfielder Sidney Rone, Ethel; sophomore manager Kelli Ficken, Central Hinds Academy; and freshman manager Lane McTaggart, Lawrence County; and (back row, from left) head coach Leigh White; sophomore infielder Hannah Dufault, Hurley, East Central; freshman pitcher/infielder Gracey Baucom, Purvis; sophomore outfielder Parker Breland, Union; freshman outfielder Khadajah Cowan, Gautier, Resurrection Catholic; freshman catcher/infielder Morgan Partridge, Enterprise; and assistant coach Ryan McTaggart. (EC Photo)