Homecoming Week Update from North DeSoto High

There has been an update to NDHS’s  Homecoming Week schedule.  First, the homecoming game Friday night is a forfeit by the opponent, Pickering.  However, the homecoming week activities are continuing.

Homecoming Dress Days for the rest of the week:

Tonight, Wednesday September 29th – Outer Banks – beach bum, vacation or preppy.

Thursday September 30th – Friday Night Lights – class colors head to toe.

There will be a parade on the North DeSoto campus on Thursday beginning at 9:30 am.

The Friday activities are being moved to October 15th with a pep rally at 2:00 pm.  Alumni will be recognized at 6:30 pm prior to the game.  The homecoming court will be presented at halftime in the game.

North Desoto’s Senior Night presentation will be moved to the Woodlawn game on October 29th.


Reinstating Logansport American Legion Post

Last Saturday, American Legion LA Post 157 held a re-instatement meeting where Mike Armstrong was elected to serve as Post Commander and was sworn-in by District Commander Linda Resendez.

Appointments included David Mark Armstrong as Post Adjutant, David Armstrong as Chaplain, and Fred Methvin as Sergeant at Arms Pro Tempore.

In attendance was Louisiana State Senator Barry Milligan, several American Legion District representatives, and a number of current Post members, many of whom have been active with the American Legion for over 20 years.


Sheriff’s Department is Hiring

Interested in employment with the DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office?  PLEASE NOTE:  LOCATION FOR THIS EVENT HAS CHANGED.  It will be held at the Stonewall Government Plaza in Stonewall, LA on October 09, 2021.

DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office has a multiple step hiring process.  Throughout this process, applicants will be screened with a reading and comprehension test, physical fitness assessment, background check, and interview.

For more information regarding our process and to obtain a copy of our hiring packet, you may visit our website at dpso.org/employment

Please pre-register for this testing by completing the above hiring packet and submitting it at our main office, located at 205 Franklin Street, Mansfield, LA 71052 during normal business hours (M-F / 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. excluding holidays). 

NEXT TESTING DATE:  OCTOBER 09th  |  9:00am.

Although all are welcome to apply for any position, it is worth noting that on this testing date we will be seeking to fill positions in Patrol only. 

INFORMATION ON TESTING PROCESS:

Upon arrival, applicants are expected to take a written test consisting of reading, comprehension, and vocabulary.

Immediately following this test there will be a Physical Assessment (or Physical Fitness Test) for ONLY those applying into Corrections and Patrol.

All testing will be held at:  STONEWALL GOVERNMENT PLAZA / SUBSTATION, 1746 Highway 171, Stonewall, La.


Guest For Coin Toss

The Griffins welcomed graduate and veteran Gage Nichols to the game Friday night.  He participated in the coin toss prior to the game with Sterlington.

North DeSoto High expressed their appreciation to Marine Lance Corporal Gage Nichols, a graduate in North Desoto High School Class of 2018. Gage has been deployed on the ship, Iwo Jima, since February.

Nichols received orders to deploy to Kabul, Afghanistan on August 12th. His 1st Battalion, 8th Marines were the first on the ground at the airport, keeping the vital lifeline open for vulnerable Afghans attempting to flee and any U.S. citizens who remained in the country. He was in the last battalion to leave the airport on August 30th.

Lance Corporal Nichols is currently stationed at Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, North Carolina.


High School Discussion Groups

Tenth graders at North Desoto High School engaged in student-led discussions around characters in Hamilton, the musical.  This study is part of updated Louisiana Guidebook lessons for high school through the LearnZillion digital platform.  The school said there were awesome discussions in this group.


The General Plot

By Brad Dison

In 1945, General inherited a large multilevel house which was in disrepair.  The wooden structure was in danger of collapsing and the masonry was crumbling.  The floors creaked and swayed, especially when walked on.  The light fixtures in the lower rooms swayed when someone walked on the floors above.  One light fixture in the house seemed to be lower with each passing day.  General referred to the creaking and moaning of the house’s rotting timbers as ghosts.  General had an architect inspect the house who remarked that “the beams [in the house] are staying up there from force of habit only.”  The house was in danger of collapsing.  The last straw came in June of 1948 when a leg of a piano crashed through an upper floor and through the ceiling of the dining room.  In November of 1949, General moved into a residence nearby so that the house he inherited could be reconstructed.  The house had too much sentimental value for it to be demolished.

Not everyone liked General.  In fact, some people wanted to kill General, and he knew it.  For this reason, General surrounded himself with bodyguards, some of which were police officers.

At about 2:15 on the afternoon of November 1, 1950, two men, Griselio Torresola and Oscar Collazo, set a plan into motion to murder General.  They had learned that General had moved into the temporary residence.  Griselio approached the residence from the west side, while Oscar approached from the east.  Police officer Donald Birdzell stood on the front steps of the residence.  Oscar, with pistol in hand, snuck up behind the Birdzell and pulled the trigger.  Snap!!!  Oscar had forgotten to chamber a round in his pistol.  Birdzell turned as Oscar chambered a round.  Oscar fired the pistol and struck Birdzell in his right knee.  As Oscar approached the steps which led to the front door, another bodyguard stepped out of the residence and shot Oscar in the chest.  Oscar collapsed and writhed in pain at the foot of the steps.

Meanwhile, on the west side of the residence, Griselio shot police officer Leslie Coffelt four times at close range.  He turned his pistol on policeman Joseph Downs and shot him three times.  Griselio shot officer Birdzell in his other knee. Griselio had no more rounds in the gun and stopped to reload.  General, who had been taking a nap on the second floor, peered out of a window directly over the front door to see what the commotion was.  General was a First World War combat veteran and was not frightened by the gunfire.  People yelled for General to get away from the window.  He obeyed their command.  At that moment, Coffelt, though severely injured, fired a single shot at Griselio before falling to the ground unconscious.  The bullet from Coffelt’s pistol struck Griselio in the head and killed him instantly.

When the shooting was over, three guards were wounded including 40-year-old Leslie Coffelt, who died later that evening during surgery.  Oscar survived and spent the next 29 years in prison.  In an interview with Time magazine about the murder plot, General calmly said, “the only thing you have to worry about is bad luck.”  General grinned and said, “I never have bad luck.”  General remarked that he was unafraid because he “had been shot at by professionals” during the First World War.

Although the shooting lasted less than a minute, General survived a murder attempt in what was described as “the biggest gunfight in Secret Service history.”  You see, the house General inherited was the White House.  General was the Secret Service’s code name for… President Harry Truman.

Sources:

  1. The Philadelphia Inquirer, November 2, 1950, p.1.
  2. Mahan, Sydney. “66 Years Ago Today, President Truman Survived an Assassination Attempt at Blair House.” Washingtonian. November 1, 2016. washingtonian.com/2016/11/01/president-truman-assassination-attempt-blair-house/

Photo caption:  The entrance to General’s temporary residence (1) where one of the would-be assassins was wounded.  The other tumbled into bushes (2), fatally shot.  Shots were fired from sentry box (3) at the gunmen while two guards were wounded in the other box (4).  A guard on duty at the entrance steps was wounded and stumbled into the street (5). General appeared at window (6).


Teachers of the Year

The DeSoto Parish School board has issued congratulations to this year’s Teachers of the Year.  They were chosen by the faculty at each school.

Representing Logansport High School is Rebecca Falcon.  Andrew Dufour was selected from Mansfield High.  North Desoto’s Teacher of the Year is Emilie King.  And from Stanley High the teacher selected is Tiffany Nolen.  The complete list of those selected is on the flyer below.

Also, the school board congratulated the District Principal of the Year. She is Tamela Phillips from North Desoto High School.


Caught in the Act!

If you live in the Stonewall area of DeSoto Parish, you have been blessed with two of the Good Lord’s favorite people, Randy and Pam Rogers!

These two have dedicated their golden years to giving back, and they are doing an incredible job with that mission!

We learned of their heroics when BJ Coker took the time to nominate them for this week’s Kiss Country Caught in the Act Award.  And that letter made them an easy choice to recognize this week. Just read for yourself how wonderful these two really are!

Randy is the Mayor of Stonewall, LA. He and his lady are continuously doing for the community inside and outside the Town. Randy is also on the water board for the area. The mayor position pays hardly anything, the water board zero. But yet he is out there, operating heaving equipment for the good of the community along with town business, his wife ‘Pam’ the same as if he’s tied up at the same time something else is going on, then she will make the Mayor’s office present by filling the void. I have personally watched him help folks for no other reason but to help. I have seen him with shovel in hand digging on water meters just to make the box look better. He just recently helped a widower with their septic system, paid for out of his own pocket. It’s amazing how much he does for this town that goes unrecognized, he and his Lady are the best of the best and don’t stop. Another thing he does is he is a member of the Kris Kringle Society, when you meet him you’ll understand why. His role as Santa is a every year occurrence for them, he makes sure to help the children locally and afar. As a whole, you just can’t ask for anything more for what they do, Stonewall is a rapidly growing town, they are on top of it as with a good man shining, there is a Lady that keeps the luster lit for him

Randy and Pam Rogers, thank you for being so amazing! You are a big reason why this is the greatest place in America to live!

From Kiss Country Radio station.


DeSoto Sports Report

Here are the results of high school football games in the parish last Friday.

On 9/24, the Mansfield varsity football team won their home non-conference game against Minden (LA) by a score of 46-25.  Mansfield has a bye week.

On 9/24, the North DeSoto varsity football team lost their home non-conference game against Sterlington (LA) by a score of 38-35.  North Desoto is idle Friday after Pickering forfeited.

On 9/24, the Logansport varsity football team lost their away non-conference game against Jonesboro-Hodge (Jonesboro, LA) by a score of 47-26.  Friday night the Tigers host Rosepine.


Let’s Not Abandon Our Constitution to The Administrative State

The U.S. Constitution is the rarest, most extraordinary governing document of all time and, with the exception of the Bible, has had the greatest impact of any written work in human history.   That’s because it contains the formal enshrinement, guarantee and protection of the precious rights and liberties we hold and cherish as individuals and citizens.  Perhaps most importantly, it stands as the bulwark of freedom against any and all encroachments and infringements by government upon those sacred rights.

Our Constitution is premised upon the transcendent belief that these unalienable, fundamental rights flow from natural law and do not flow from—are not given or bequeathed to us by—government.  Rather, they are God-given rights and, as such, we view them as intrinsic to and inherent in every human being.  We possess them merely based upon the fact of our birth (many of us believe deeply they should be extended to unborn babies, as well).

Further, as we know, the Constitution prescribes both the explicit powers and express limitations of government.  And one of the painstakingly crafted provisions is found in Article 1, Section 1 which clearly states that “all legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.”  Another carefully written provision involves Article 1, Section 7 which mandates that “every bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate shall, before it become a law, be presented to the President of the United States.”

That, in summary form, is how laws are legitimately made in this country.  Well, that began to change dramatically with the start of massive federal spending and accompanying massive government programs.  Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal was the beginning of this change but LBJ’s Great Society also sparked enormous growth of federal government spending and the creation of equally enormous federal programs.  This unprecedented federal spending and these huge programs had to be administered and this is what gave rise to the oppressive administrative state we live in today.

Well, this expansive administrative state—and the huge federal agencies that comprise it—are unconstitutional.  Why is that? Because these agencies and the career bureaucrats who run them are unknown, faceless and were never elected to anything.  Yet, they are making and enforcing laws upon the American people!  They make policy decisions every day that affect millions of Americans.

The issue is well stated here: “The Founders understood that there are two fundamental ways in which government can exercise its authority.  The first is a system of arbitrary rule, where the government decides how to act on an ad hoc basis, leaving decisions up to the whim of whatever official or officials happen to be in charge; the second way is to implement a system grounded in the rule of law, where legal rules are made in advance and published, binding both government and citizens and allowing the latter to know exactly what they have to do or not to do in order to avoid the coercive authority of the former.”  (Heritage Foundation, Ronald Pestritto).

Well, we chose the second way!  We opted for the rule of law which affords guarantees like notice, due process and equal protection of the laws to every citizen—a process designed to insure what we have come to call “fundamental fairness.”  Further, we govern ourselves in an equally predictable manner: we elect our President and our U.S. Senators and U.S. Representatives to implement in policy and law the will of the American people.  These elected officials are accountable to us because their every official action is heavily and constantly scrutinized and, in the next election, we may throw them out of office (of course, this assumes we have free and fair elections) and elect someone else when we feel our political will is not being honored.

There is no place in our constitutional scheme for powerful federal agencies who decide what the laws applicable to their agencies mean—they interpret statutes for themselves—and, unfortunately, the U.S. Supreme Court and lower federal courts, through the ill-advised legal doctrine of Chevron Deference, have given up their most important role—interpreting statutes and adjudicating agency disputes—instead choosing to defer to “agency expertise.”  The reason this is so dangerous is because a federal agency—like, for example, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)—has often abused its authority and been dictatorial in its view of its own power while being largely unaccountable to the Congress.

For example, the EPA, in conjunction with the Army Corps of Engineers, has jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act to regulate “navigable waters” which are defined as “the waters of the United States, including the territorial seas.”  (The Rivers and Harbors Act is often dubiously used also).  The dispute is almost always about what qualifies as “navigable water.”  Well, in the past, unsurprisingly, the EPA and the Corps have tried to expand their authority by implementing an agency rule that would define “navigable waters” as even including all ditches—any ditch, even a man-made ditch—in a farmer’s field, for example.  It even includes depressions or low points in a field that are dry most of the time except when it rains.  (Heritage Foundation, Daren Bakst).  This is insane.

This also means that if the EPA and Corps are not checked and reined in but continue to expand their authority over more waters, property owners will have to secure additional permits to use their own land!  They will have to get permission from federal bureaucrats to use and enjoy their property because of the presence of so-called “navigable waters” that were never intended to be regulated under the Clean Water Act.  If property owners don’t comply with the law, they can even face civil penalties as high as $37,500 per day per violation, or even criminal penalties. (Id.)

This is what is most concerning about the burgeoning growth of the administrative state in our country.  There is no accountability.  Ultimately the Congress is going to have to stop deferring—whether due to laziness or timidity—to these powerful federal agencies (who often have their own agendas) and reassert its authority to define what terms like “navigable waters” mean.  One of the most hallowed rights of all—private property rights—are at stake.  Congress must act to correct these kinds of agency abuses and, in the meantime, the federal courts—whose duty and province is emphatically to “say what the law is” (Marbury)—must stop deferring to these agencies and interpret these statutes for themselves.  Otherwise, we are not adhering to the rule of law in our constitutional scheme.


Public Rifle Siting Dates Announced

Sheriff Jayson Richardson will be opening the DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office Rifle Range to public residents on two available dates in October. The dates below will be reserved for DeSoto Parish hunters to have an opportunity to sight in their rifles for hunting season. Sheriff Richardson is pleased to offer this service to our residents free of charge, in a safe environment.

The Range will have shooting lanes open with targets at 100 yards. All stations will be equipped with a shooting bench and lead sled to assist hunters. Basic targets will be available at the range, but shooters are allowed to bring their own targets. You will need to bring your own weapons, ammunition, hearing and eye protection. Limited hearing and eye protection may be available at the range if needed. A Range Instructor as well as other deputies will be on site and available to assist citizens to ensure safety. Proper sanitation of equipment will also be in place between each shooting session.  Registration is not required; however, the range will only be open to DeSoto Parish residents during the dates and times provided below.

Dates:  

Saturday, October 16, 9am – 4pm

Saturday, October 23, 9am – 4pm

Location:

DeSoto Parish Training Facility

120 Sprocket Ln., Grand Cane, LA


A Birthday Celebration

News from the DeSoto Parish Library

On September 24th, Mrs. Kriston had an awesome time with the kiddos at Pelican Branch Library this evening.  She said, “We celebrated Johnny Appleseed’s birthday.

Children participated by painting apples, making paper crafts, making an apple volcano, making an apple sensory ball and having some great apple snacks.


A Thankless Job

By Steve Graf

We’ve all, at one time or another, had those jobs that nobody else wants. Those jobs, where no matter what decisions you make, everyone will not be happy. If you’ve ever run a bass tournament, you’ll find out quickly that there’s not a bigger bunch of whiners on the planet than bass fishermen. If you feed them hamburgers for good performance, they want to know why they didn’t get a ribeye. They really are the most selfish and spoiled outdoorsmen that exist. They like to be catered to and hailed for their skills and abilities to catch bass. Another way to say it…they’re brats!

Without Tournament Directors (TD’s), anglers would be the inmates running the asylum. TD’s are the guys that run bass tournaments for different organizations all across the country and have a tough job trying to satisfy bass fishermen. They don’t write the rules, they just enforce them, even when they know it will hurt an angler or a team. That’s not their intention to hurt anyone, but it’s a part of the job that goes with being a tournament director. Sometimes they have to be the bad guy whether it’s a one-pound penalty for a minor violation, or worst, a disqualification, which is rare. An example of a one-pound penalty would be weighing a dead fish. If there’s one thing that’s really emphasized in bass tournaments today, it is keeping your fish alive before weigh-in. An example of a disqualification would be not wearing a life jacket either during practice or on tournament day.

But without good TD’s, bass tournaments would be a mess. They constantly have to hear anglers complain about this and that including, but not limited to, accusations from other anglers like… they were fishing too close, they were fishing my spot, they ran through a no wake zone, they weren’t wearing their life jackets….and the list goes on and on! Bass fishermen love rules, as long as they don’t apply to them. No matter what the TD decides on a situation, someone will not be happy. But for a fishing circuit or tournament trail to be successful, it better have a good strong TD who’s not afraid to hurt someone’s feelings. Nothing will ruin a tournament trail quicker than a weak director who does not enforce the rules, or even worse, changes or alters the rules the morning of a tournament. This will make anglers load their boats and leave….. never to return. Every tournament trail that’s ever failed, was usually because rules were not enforced with consistency. If things aren’t run the right way, anglers will abandon ship quicker than setting the hook on a big bass.

So today, I salute all the guys who have taken on that role of TD and had to be the bad guy every once in a while. They spend countless hours on the road and away from their families just like anglers do. In some cases, they literally go from one event to the next, loading and unloading, breaking down and setting up. They make sure the polygraph exams are done correctly. They coordinate all take-offs the morning of the tournament and they make sure all anglers are off the water safe and on time. Then they have to run the weigh-in and pass out checks, before packing up and heading to the next event. So, the next time you’re in a bass tournament or following a bass trail, tell the tournament director “thank you” for doing a great job. Till next time, good luck, good fishing, and don’t forget to set the hook!


Pelican Library Big Buck Contest

From the first of October through the end of deer season, the Pelican Library branch will conduct a big buck contest.  For 2021 the library is adding a 12 and under category.

The contest rules are below.  The library said, “Shoot straight and the best of luck!”

There is no pre-registration and no cost to enter.  Just take a picture and take or send it to the library by email, snail-mail, or bring it by during library hours.  Just supply your name and phone number.

The library would also like to know your story.  Where and when you got the big buck and what you used to take the buck down.  They said they wanted to hear all the details.

The prize for the largest buck entered is $100.  And this year they are also offering $100 to the biggest buck in the 12 and under category.  The library said the winner of last year’s big buck contest, Nick Shoalmire is furnishing the prize to the 12 and under winner.


Tools of the Trade

It is 80’s day at North DeSoto Lower Elementary today, and the kids have been discussing “tools of the trade” in class!  School Resource Corporal, Brett Randolph thought it would be nice to show the kids some of the tools used by the DeSoto Sheriff’s Office!  Sheriff Jayson Richardson attended the demonstration, accompanied by K9, SWAT, and many others to show off equipment and explain what each one is used for. 

Students were excited to receive stickers, lanyards, pens, pencils, and other cool things from Sheriff Richardson as they enjoyed learning about the HydraTrek, Marine, Motorcycles, DARE, and a demonstration from K9 Rex.  

We always enjoy the opportunity to speak with our local students to not only teach, but to further build a relationship of trust when they see a deputy or officer out in public.  We send a special thanks to our educators at NDLE for allowing us that opportunity!


Great Catfish Dinner

A crowd turned out Friday evening for catfish, hush puppies, all the trimmings plus killer bread pudding for dessert.  The occasion was the Fourth Friday Fish Fry at Clara Springs Camp.

Mandi Mills said, “Thank you Westside Baptist Church for helping us feed 304 people tonight at our September Fourth Friday Fish Fry!! Special thanks to Malcolm Durr for the display of Clara Springs artifacts!”

The Journal was there signing people up for our emails of each edition.  Many folks signed up to receive the new DeSoto Parish Journal.

As we were leaving, Bubba Mills reminded us that the October 22nd fish fry would be the last one of this year.  So, mark your calendar now for the fourth Friday in October.


Kennel Tech I

Pay Range:  $12.81 – $19.22

Qualifications:

Three (3) to five (5) years’ experience in a kennel environment or animal care field, preferred.

Must possess a valid Driver’s License.

High School Diploma or State accredited GED

Must possess a Louisiana State Certified Euthanasia Technician Certificate (CAET) or be able to obtain certification within (1) year from date of hire.

The ability to provide humane treatment to animals, custodial care, adoption or euthanasia of animals within standard operating guidelines and policies.

Basic computer skills.

Applications will be accepted until 4:30 p.m., Wednesday, October 8, 2021 at the Human Resources Office, 105 Franklin Street, Mansfield, LA or the Administrative Office, 101 Franklin Street, Mansfield, LA.

Application and a copy of the job description may be obtained from the Human Resources Office, Administrative Office or desotoppj.com.


Solid Waste Superintendent

Pay Range:  $55,488 – $79,932

Qualifications:

High School Diploma, or GED

Possess a Level 1, Class A Solid Waste Operator’s Certificate.

Five (5) years progressively more responsible supervisory experience in solid waste management.

Must be able to pass a pre-employment drug screen, physical and background check.

The ability to plan, initiate and execute procedures and policies and to solve and properly explain, verbally and in writing with persons at all levels.

Applications will be accepted until 4:30 p.m., Friday, October 15, 2021, at the Human Resources Office, 105 Franklin Street, Mansfield, LA or the Administrative Office, 101 Franklin Street, Mansfield, LA.

Application and a copy of the job description may be obtained from the Human Resources Office, Administrative Office or .desotoppj.com.