Three receive VFW National Public Servant Awards for Indiana during ceremony at Worthington VFW

 National Public Servant Awards Ceremony at Worthington VFW Post 7117 on Saturday, July 14, 2018: Past Indiana VFW Commander Johnny Capps, Indiana State Police Trooper Randall Van Arsdale, Worthington Fire Chief Kyle Steward, Worthington Captain Terry Koons, Worthington VFW Quartermaster Ken Stalcup and Commander Kermit Wilcox. Photos by Anna Rochelle.

National Public Servant Awards Ceremony at Worthington VFW Post 7117 on Saturday, July 14, 2018: Past Indiana VFW Commander Johnny Capps, Indiana State Police Trooper Randall Van Arsdale, Worthington Fire Chief Kyle Steward, Worthington Captain Terry Koons, Worthington VFW Quartermaster Ken Stalcup and Commander Kermit Wilcox. Photos by Anna Rochelle.

Three local men who received VFW National Public Servant Awards Saturday in a short ceremony at Worthington VFW Post 7117 were obviously humbled to receive such a prestigious award.

Those receiving the National Public Servant Awards for Indiana included EMT and Firefighter, Captain Terry Koons, Indiana State Police Trooper Randall Van Arsdale, and Firefighter/EMT/Fire Chief, Sgt. Kyle Steward.

The VFW National Public Servant Awards recognize individuals who put their lives on the line every day to protect and serve the community and do so in a manner in keeping with the ideals and values of the VFW organization.

The awards are given annually by the National VFW organization to one emergency medical technician (EMT), one firefighter and one law enforcement officer in each state.

This year in Indiana, the three recipients in the state were nominated by Worthington VFW Post 7117 where Quartermaster Ken Stalcup said he feels this is an important program because these people put their lives on the line every day and it’s important to recognize the contributions they make.  

It was a quiet ceremony attended by friends, family and VFW members. After the presentation, all enjoyed a meal and snacks provided by the Worthington VFW.

The awards were officially presented to all three by Past VFW State Commander Johnny Capps, assisted by Worthington VFW Commander Kermit Wilcox and Quartermaster Ken Stalcup.

Commander Capps thanked Stalcup, chairman of the nominating committee, and the local post for an outstanding job in selecting these candidates.

To the three recipients, Capps said, “As combat veterans, we know what it’s like to serve and we thank you for your service and your commitment.”

All three recipients received beautiful certificates in large leather-like bound cases with the photo and signature of the National VFW Commander, which underscored the significance of the award.

Below: Photos of the presentations and certificates with biographical information on each recipient.

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 Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States
VFW National Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) Award
Awarded to
Captain Terry Koons

In recognition and utmost appreciation of his dedication and selfless service to the Worthington Fire Territory.

During Terry Koons’ outstanding career, he has demonstrated a record of extraordinary and courageous service to the community and the nation. His exceptional devotion is illustrative of the esteemed core values and traditions of the profession of emergency responders, further evidenced by the high degree of admiration and respect from both his peers and the local public he serves.

Captain Terry Koons is truly a premier example of all EMTs and this honor reflects the proudest ideals and values of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States.

 Terry Koons receiving VFW National Public Servant Award.

Terry Koons receiving VFW National Public Servant Award.

Terry Koons is a firefighter and emergency medical technician (EMT) who has served with the Worthington Fire Territory, formerly known as the Worthington-Jefferson Township Volunteer Fire Department, as a volunteer firefighter/first responder/EMT for over 41 years.

He’s a graduate of Martinsville High School and currently employed full-time by New Fashion Pork. He keeps busy with part-time employment in emergency services and continues to volunteer his time with Worthington Fire.

For the last 30 years, Koons has been working part-time as an EMT for the Greene County Ambulance Service – he works shifts out of every GCAS station in the county.

For 21 years, Koons has been working part-time as a firefighter/fire rescue/EMT at the Ellettsville Fire Department.

In the past, Koons also worked part-time, for about 10 years, at the Wayne Township Fire Department in Indianapolis and from there, back in the mid-1980s, Koons others from Worthington Fire brought the first responder program back to Worthington and Greene County. This was a significant turning point in the service the local volunteer department was able to provide to the community as they started training all of Worthington’s firefighters to also serve as emergency first responders.

Koons is a Captain with Worthington Fire Territory, serves as a firefighter and EMT, plus he is the department’s training officer.

Koons resides south of Worthington, is an active member of the First Christian Church in Linton and several other civic organizations including the Worthington V.F.W. Auxiliary, the Sons of the American Legion, the Switz City Masonic Lodge, Terre Haute Scottish Rite and Greene County Shrine Club.

He is the proud father of two children, Tara (Koons) Shadoin and Kyle Koons, and grandfather of four.

When asked about other awards, he declined to list any and humbly nodded to the just-received VFW National Public Servant Award.         

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 Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States
VFW National Law Enforcement Award
Awarded to
State Trooper Randall Van Arsdale

In recognition and sincere appreciation of his dedication and selfless service to the Indiana State Police.

During Randall Van Arsdale’s outstanding career, he has maintained a record of highly professional and exemplary service to the community and the nation. His extraordinary commitment clearly illustrates the proud core values and traditions of the law enforcement profession, further highlighted by the degree of admiration and respect of both his peers and the local public he serves.

State Trooper Randall Van Arsdale is truly an exceptional example of all who serve the community and this honor reflects the proud ideals and high standards of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States.

 Randall Van Arsdale receiving VFW National Public Servant Award.

Randall Van Arsdale receiving VFW National Public Servant Award.

Indiana State Police Trooper Randall Van Arsdale is assigned to the Indiana State Police Bloomington Post. His primary patrol area is Owen County but he frequently patrols in Greene County as well.

Van Arsdale has been a trooper since 2012 after working his way up the law enforcement ladder gaining experience in several areas over the years.

He is a graduate of White River Valley High School and was employed by the Owen County Sheriff’s Department as a jail officer for five years - his first job in law enforcement. He then served as the Gosport Town Marshal for two and one-half years before moving into motor carrier enforcement. He served eight and one-half years in the Motor Carrier Enforcement Division of the Indiana State Police before his appointment as an ISP Trooper.

He is also a member of the T.I.P. Team, the ISP’s Tactical Intervention Platoon, a riot and tactical crowd control squad with special training, and he is still certified as a motor carrier enforcement officer.

Van Arsdale resides in southern Owen County and is the Youth Leader at the Jefferson Baptist Church in Coal City. He and his wife, Brenda Van Arsdale, are the parents of six children.

When asked about other awards he has received during his career, he glanced at the National Public Servant Award, shook his head and said there was nothing to mention that compares to this honor from the National VFW.

He did, however, want to recognize his father. Van Arsdale came from a large family – he was the youngest of eight children. His father, Elbert Van Arsdale, served for 35 years in the Indiana State Police Motor Carrier Enforcement Division.      

Kyle Steward Certificate.jpg

Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States
VFW National Firefighter Award
Awarded to
Fire Chief Kyle Steward

In recognition and utmost appreciation of his dedication and selfless service to the Worthington Fire Territory.

During Kyle Steward’s outstanding career, he has displayed an exceptional record of exemplary and courageous service to the community and the nation. His extraordinary commitment is in keeping with the esteemed core values and traditions of the firefighter profession, further manifested by the high degree of admiration and respect of both his peers and the local public he serves.

Fire Chief Kyle Steward is truly a role model to all firefighters and this honor reflects the proudest ideals of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States.

 Kyle Steward receiving VFW National Public Servant Award.

Kyle Steward receiving VFW National Public Servant Award.

Kyle Steward is the Fire Chief of the Worthington Fire Territory and he is employed full-time by Bloomington Fire Department.

Steward’s father is a long-serving member of Worthington Fire so Steward became interested in firefighting early in life then followed in his father’s footsteps.

He graduated White River Valley High School in 2002 then got a degree in Fire Science from IVY Tech. For three years while in college, he worked part-time with the Greene County Ambulance Service.

But he’s been serving as a volunteer firefighter with the Worthington Fire Department for 17 years. He well remembers that he started in 2001, one week before 9-11, and now he is Fire Chief.

He’s also a Sgt. at the Bloomington Fire Department where he has been serving as a full-time firefighter/EMT for 13 years.

Steward resides in Worthington and is active in the Folsom Memorial United Methodist Church in Worthington. He is also a member of the Worthington VFW Auxiliary and the Sons of the American Legion in Worthington.

He and his wife Alison Steward have two children, Hank and Eli. Steward is the son of Mike and Jane Steward of Worthington and he also wanted to recognize his grandfather, Harry Freeman, a veteran of World War II who served as a past Commander of Worthington VFW Post 7117.

Steward wanted to express his thanks and appreciation to Ken Stalcup and everyone at Post 7117 for the nomination.

“Truly is an honor,” said Steward.

When asked about other awards he has received, he also declined to list any.

“As far as awards, I have received several in my short career,” said Steward, “but nothing as honorable as receiving one from a national organization that serves those who have fought and died defending our great nation.”

Three to receive VFW National Public Servant Awards, Saturday at Post 7117

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Three individuals nominated by Worthington VFW Post 7117 have been selected as the three recipients in the state of Indiana of VFW National Public Servant Awards.

The public is invited to attend a special awards ceremony this Saturday, July 14, at 2 p.m. at the Worthington VFW Post.

The VFW National Public Service Awards are considered to be prestigious awards recognizing those that put their lives on the line every day to protect and serve the community.

Only three individuals are recognized in each state, one Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), one Firefighter, and one Law Enforcement Officer.

This year’s awards will be presented to: EMT Captain Terry Koons, Fire Chief Kyle Steward and Indiana State Trooper Randall VanArsdale.

Certificates will be presented to all three by Past VFW State Commander Johnny Capps.

Worthington VFW Post 7117 will be open to the public for the presentation and the community is invited.  

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Worthington Tri Kappa’s Soda Shop Craft Series continues with event in late July

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Sign up now to create your own wooden farmhouse sign in another unique crafting event in late July.

Sponsored by Worthington’s Tri Kappas, you’ll be able to make your own custom sign on Saturday, July 28, from 1-4 p.m. at the Route 67 Diner in Worthington.

But supplies for your sign must be ordered ahead of time and the deadline to sign up is Friday, July 20.

To sign-up, visit the 2 Avocados website at www.2avocados.com/#!/8/featured/Sign_Parties/176

Participants will be able to pick paint and color combinations during the session.

This event is a part of a series of special craft sessions sponsored by Worthington’s Delta Nu Chapter of Tri Kappa this summer to help raise funds for their philanthropic projects.

In this session on July 28, participants will work on a 15” x 24” sign. The cost is $45 each. All supplies are provided.

For more information, visit the event page on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/events/158241631560848/ or contact Susan Bays at 812-875-3934.

Turning Point Education Center offering free education, training, certifications

Turning Point Educational Center (TPEC), a part of the Open Arms Family and Educational Services, near Switz City, is now offering free High School Equivalency, CNA certification, Teaching Assistant certification, and welding certification.

TPEC can also refer students for free CDL, HVAC, Computer Tech, Administrative Assistant with a Microsoft Office Specialist, Clinical Medical Assistant, and Automotive training.

CNA Schedule - 6 week course on campus and Lyons Nursing Home

  • August 20 – September 28
  • October 8 – November 16
  • January 14 – February 22 (No classes in March due to spring breaks and vacations)
  • April 1 – May 10
  • June 10 – July 19

Welding Schedule - 7 week course on campus and at Bloomfield High School

  • August 20 – October 5
  • October 15 – December 7 (No classes the week of Thanksgiving)
  • January 14 – March 1 (No classes in March due to spring breaks and vacations)
  • April 1 – May 17
  • June 10 – July 28

Contact Michelle Ellis at Open Arms at 812-659-2533, 812-659-2443/or 812-384-7131 for more information.

Story involving Worthington incident free for all to read on GreeneStreets crime blog

 Terasitta Thompson

Terasitta Thompson

Story posted today in Greene County crime about a Switz City woman, who allegedly harassed employees at a store in Worthington for four days in a row, who was arrested for public intoxication. Most posts are subscriber stories but some are posted with open access.

Click here to read on the GreeneStreets crime blog - this story is free for all.

Libraries Rock! Win rewards for reading in the WJ Library’s summer reading program for teens

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Teens who read can qualify for rewards in the 2018 Summer Reading Program for Teens at the Worthington Jefferson Township Public Library.

This program is for readers in grades 7-12.

Readers can earn a weekly reward and they can aim to win a special grand prize awarded at the end of the program.

The summer program started on Monday, June 4, so some participants who joined in at the start will have a head start on late-comers, but it’s never too late to give it a shot. And all teen readers who sign-up and meet the requirements are eligible for the weekly rewards no matter when they join the program. The program ends on Wednesday, July 11.

In order to qualify for a weekly reward, the reader needs to read at least two hours per week. Participants are given a pen and a journal to record their reading time. Their reading material must come from the WJ Library’s collection. If the participant read for at least two hours during a week and recorded it in their journal, their journal will be signed and stamped by library personnel and the reader will be given a reward. (Only one reward per reader per week.)

To qualify for the grand prize, readers must turn in their journal before closing time on Tuesday, July 10. Then on Wednesday, July 11, the participant who read the most will win a prize package of gift cards.

If anyone wants to participate and does not have a library card, just go in to the library with a parent or guardian. Anyone who is age 17 or under must have a parent or guardian with them to get a library card.

Any student from the White River Valley school district can get a library card. Call the library for more information.

The Worthington Jefferson Township Public Library is open on Mondays and Wednesdays from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.; Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12 noon until 8 p.m.; Fridays from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.; and Saturdays from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. The library is closed on Sundays. The library is located at 26 North Commercial Street on State Road 67/US 231 in Worthington.

For more information, call the library at 812-875-3815 or visit Worthington Jefferson Township Public Library online  or on Facebook @WorthingtonJeffersonTownshipPublicLibrary.

Libraries Rock! WJ Library’s summer reading program offers crafts and fun for kids preschool-6th grade

Still to Come: Amazon John from Silly Safaris on Monday, then Rocks and Minerals on June 25, Professor Steve's Super Sonic Sound Show on July 2 and Wonder Lab's Symphony of Science on July 9.

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Any child from preschool through sixth grade is welcome to attend the 2018 Summer Reading Program at the Worthington Jefferson Township Public Library on Mondays and Wednesdays from 1:30 until 2:30 p.m. from now until Wednesday, July 11.

Although the program got started in early June, WJ Library Director Andrea Fuller said children can join in at any time for any session.

At the last session at the end of the program, three lucky winners will receive $25 iTunes gift cards. For every day that a child attends a program session, for every guest they bring, and for every hour that they read or were read to, their name will be entered into the drawing for the gift cards. (Only one winner per child.)

Upcoming program sessions include:

  • Monday, June 18 – Amazon John from Silly Safaris
  • Wednesday, June 20 – Craft Session
  • Monday, June 25 – Indiana Rocks and Minerals
  • Wednesday, June 27 – Craft Session
  • Monday, July 2 – Professor Steve’s Super Sonic Sound Show
  • Wednesday, July 4 – Closed for the holiday
  • Monday, July 9 – Wonder Lab’s Symphony of Silence
  • Wednesday, July 11 – Lunch and Awards

The Worthington Jefferson Township Public Library is open on Mondays and Wednesdays from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.; Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12 noon until 8 p.m.; Fridays from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.; and Saturdays from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. The library is closed on Sundays. The library is located at 26 North Commercial Street on State Road 67/US 231 in Worthington.

For more information, call the library at 812-875-3815 or visit Worthington Jefferson Township Public Library online  or on Facebook @WorthingtonJeffersonTownshipPublicLibrary.

Open Arms 6th Annual Spirit Sprint in Worthington: Results and Photo Gallery

 With a start and finish line in the Worthington Park, the annual Open Arms Spirit Sprint attracts runners and walkers from Worthington and Greene and surrounding counties who run or walk through the streets of Worthington on a 3.2 mile course. Volunteers staff the registration tables and provide water at aid stations along the route. This was the sixth year for the Spirit Sprint which takes place each year on a Saturday morning in early June. The race logo, selected by popular vote, changes each year.        

With a start and finish line in the Worthington Park, the annual Open Arms Spirit Sprint attracts runners and walkers from Worthington and Greene and surrounding counties who run or walk through the streets of Worthington on a 3.2 mile course. Volunteers staff the registration tables and provide water at aid stations along the route. This was the sixth year for the Spirit Sprint which takes place each year on a Saturday morning in early June. The race logo, selected by popular vote, changes each year.        

WORTHINGTON -- A seventh grade student at Bloomfield Junior-Senior High School claimed top prize in the 6th Annual Open Arms Christian Ministries Spirit Sprint 5K Run/Walk on Saturday, June 2, in Worthington.

Justin Beard, the son of Brad and Julie Beard, toured the 3.2 mile course in 19:12.9, just over 45 seconds ahead of second place runner Skylar Sorokoty, from Spencer, who had a time of 19:58.7.

Rachel Wiseman, of Bloomfield, was the first female finisher in 23:48.2. She was the ninth overall finisher. Second place female was Rebecca Roberts, of Bloomington, in 25:24.7, who placed 13th overall.

More than 100 runners and walkers participated in this year’s event that started and finished at the Worthington Town Park.

For the third straight year a team of runners and walkers from Greene County Chiropractic in Worthington claimed the ‘Holy Grail Trophy’ for having the most registered participants among church groups, organizations or teams with 14. Smithville Christian Church placed a close second with 13 and Bloomfield First Christian Church followed with 12 participants.

Age group winners in the 5K included: 1-14 age male – Eli Crites (21:52.1 – 5th overall); 15-19 age male – Blaine Gilstrap (21:14.1 -3rd overall); 20-29 age male – Caleb McHenry (27:46.5 – 17th overall); 30-39 age male - Skylar Sorokoty  (19:58.7 – 2nd overall); 40-49 age male – Dick Brown (23:13.6 – 6th overall); 50-59 age male – Pip Chamberlain (29.04.4 – 21st overall); 60-69 year old male – Richard Rainey (28:49.5 – 20th overall); 70-99 age male – James Hert (47:48.5 – 53rd overall); 1-14 age female – Adalyn Wiseman (28:41.2 – 18th overall); 15-19 female – Christina Davis (25:46.2 – 14th overall); 20-29 age female – Jennifer Hert (31:20.8 – 25th overall); 30-39 age female – Rebecca Roberts (25:24.7 – 13th overall); 40-49 age female – Britney Lynn (27:19.3 – 15th overall); 50-59 age female – Rebecca McHenry (36:08.2 – 37th overall); 60-69 age female – Karen Firestone (36:08.5 – 38th overall).

Kids Race winners were: age 4 and under – Gavin Rice; age 4-6 – Azleigh Goodman; and age 7-12 – Leo Miller.

Proceeds for this year’s event were earmarked for Open Arms’ foster care training and services.

This year’s corporate sponsors included: McHenry Homes, Inc.; Powers Orthodontics; Marner Wood Products LLC; Greene County Chiropractic, LLC; Owen County State Bank; Dyar Real Estate; Greene County General Hospital; Odon Locker Company; Scott Powers, DDS; Wabash Valley Correctional Facility; Christian Financial Resources; Poole Mill Produce and The Original Company Radio Group.

Open Arms Family and Education Services is located near Switz City. The not for profit agency operates the Miriam Group Home, administers foster care/adoption services and offers students at the Turning Point Education Center (TPEC) high school equivalency classes and testing, high school credit recovery classes and career training.

Open Arms Spirit Sprint 2018 Photo Gallery:
Photos by Nick Schneider provided
courtesy of Open Arms.

IDEM issues Air Quality Action Day for Saturday for area that includes Greene County

IDEM issues Air Quality Action Day for two Indiana regions

INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) has issued an Air Quality Action Day and is forecasting high ozone levels for Saturday, June 16, 2018 in the following areas: 

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  • Southwest Indiana – Daviess, Dubois, Gibson, Greene, Knox, Perry, Pike, Posey, Spencer, Vanderburgh, and Warrick 
  • West Central Indiana – Vigo 

IDEM encourages everyone to help reduce ozone by making simple changes to their daily habits. You can:

  • Walk, bike, carpool or use public transportation
  • Avoid using the drive-through and combine errands into one trip
  • Avoid refueling your vehicle or using gasoline-powered lawn equipment until after 7 p.m.
  • Turn off your engine when idling for more than 30 seconds
  • Conserve energy by turning off lights or setting the air conditioner to 75 degrees or above 

Anyone sensitive to changes in air quality may be affected when ozone levels are high. Children, the elderly and anyone with heart or lung conditions should reduce or avoid exertion and heavy work outdoors. 

IDEM examines weather patterns and current ozone readings to make daily air quality forecasts. To learn more about ozone or sign up for air quality forecasts, visit www.SmogWatch.IN.gov or download their iPhone App: 

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/smogwatch/id882860480?mt=8 

Ground-level ozone is formed when sunlight and hot weather bake vehicle exhaust, factory emissions and gasoline vapors. Ozone in the upper atmosphere blocks ultraviolet radiation, but ozone near the ground is a lung irritant that can cause coughing and breathing difficulties. 

About the ozone standard: On October 1, 2015, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) finalized the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ground-level ozone. The new rule sets more stringent standards, lowering both the primary (health-based) and secondary (welfare-based) standards from 75 parts per billion (ppb) to 70 ppb. IDEM encourages all Hoosiers to be proactive and help reduce ozone for those who may be sensitive.

About IDEM
IDEM (www.idem.IN.gov) implements federal and state regulations regarding the environment. Through compliance assistance, incentive programs and educational outreach, the agency encourages and aids businesses and citizens in protecting Hoosiers and our environment.  

Sign up deadline is Saturday: Make your own custom sign in Tri Kappa Soda Shop Craft Series

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Sign up now to create your own wooden farmhouse sign in a unique crafting event in late June.

Sponsored by Worthington’s Tri Kappas, you’ll be able to make your own custom sign on June 30 from 2-4 p.m. at the Route 67 Diner.

But supplies for your sign must be ordered ahead of time and the deadline to sign up is Saturday, June 16!

To sign-up, visit the event page on Facebook: Tri Kappa Sign Fundraiser

This event is a part of a series of special craft sessions sponsored by Worthington’s Delta Nu Chapter of Tri Kappa to help raise funds for their philanthropic projects.

The Tri Kappas partnered with Bear Rug Studio to present this “Soda Shop Craft Series” this summer and the June 30 session is their second of three events.

In this session, participants will receive a 10” x 18” primed MDF board trimmed in a pine frame with a custom stencil. The cost is $45 each.

During the event, the owners of Bear Rug Studio will be available to guide all crafters through the afternoon as they create their own sign. They say all supplies are provided and zero creative ability is required to successfully create the sign.