Do We Need Another Beauty Queen?

By Journal Publisher John Brewer

Every school has a Homecoming Queen.  And there seems to be a queen chosen for each fair or festival you attend.  So that got me to thinking, the Journal needs to hold a pageant and select our queen.

Yes! We do need a queen!

We will rent a prominent hall to hold the pageant.  There can be entries from churches, schools, and social clubs.  Moms and grandmoms can prepare the contestants outfits.  We can have competition in talent, swimsuit, camo, and other categories.

It will be a great time.  So, send your entries in. There is no entry fee.  And the tickets to the pageant will be free also.  The Journal will be selecting our “Miss Information” in the near future. 

We’ll do it right after we wrap up our quadra-annual Ugly Baby Contest.

Runoff In Mansfield Mayor’s Race

In the Mayor’s race last Saturday, Mansfield voters gave Police Jury member Thomas Jones 43% or 626 votes.  Incumbent Mayor John Mayweather, Sr. polled 34% or 502 votes.  And Joseph Hall, Jr. got 23% or 330 votes.  That set up a runoff April 30th between Jones and Mayweather because no candidate got a majority or 50% plus one.

First place finisher Thomas Jones told the Journal it was the result of his team working door to door to get his message out.  “We need to move forward, to clean up the city, to bring back jobs and businesses and we need better housing,” Jones said.  He added “We need more businesses to create more jobs to give our children some reason to stay here.”

Looking forward to the runoff on April 30th, Jones said his message will be the same.  “We need to get more people out to vote.  We are going to target those who did not vote last Saturday and get them to vote in the runoff,” Jones added.

Incumbent Mayor John Mayweather, Sr told the Journal, “I’m in it to win it.”  He said over the past two years, when everything was shut down by the pandemic, his concern was keeping the city afloat.  “My hands were tied by COVID.  My job was to keep the city safe.  Revenue was down but we kept our people on the job.  I had to rotate people in and out to keep the office open safely.”

Mayweather said, “We were working together with the Sheriff’s Department, the District Attorney and the people to keep Mansfield going.  Now we will be doing something for our young people, improving recreation, and cleaning up the city.  We are ready for the next four years.”

Four years ago, Mayweather was again in a runoff.  “We won last time against the same opponent.  I am not worried about an uphill battle, said Mayweather.  He added, “I trusted in the Lord and came out on top.  I am a Christian and I believe in the Lord.  He makes the decision and I am satisfied with whatever He decides.

As for his strategy in the runoff election, Mayweather said, “The only thing different in the runoff is run.  I am gonna run like never before.  Running 100 miles per hour to do what I need to do to win the election.  We have got to get the people out to the polls and vote.”

The Secretary of State supplied this information about the April 30th Municipal General Election:

The deadline to register to vote through the GeauxVote Online Registration System is April 9.  The deadline to register in person passed on March 30th.

Early voting is April 16-23 (excluding Sunday, April 17) from 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m.

The deadline to request an absentee ballot is April 26 by 4:30 pm (other than military and overseas voters). You can request an absentee ballot online through our Voter Portal or in writing through your Registrar of Voters Office.

The deadline for a registrar of voters to receive a voted absentee ballot is April 29 by 4:30 p.m. (other than military and overseas voters).

On election day, the polls are open from 7 a.m.-8 p.m.

Band Fundraiser Saturday Night

The North DeSoto Band is holding a fundraiser tonight to purchase new uniforms and instruments and cover expense of competitions and other band  activities.  A few advance tickets are available today at the school office.  Otherwise get them at the door.

Students and faculty will be showing their talent during the competitions.  And family and friends can help assure the winning act will get a $250 award by bringing cash to donate.  The contestant gathering the most donations will be crowned Fan Favorite.

Tickets at the office today are $15 with six and under for $10.  At the door, tickets will be $20 and $15.  North DeSoto’s Got Talent will be held in the school gym Saturday at 7:00 pm. The lead sponsor for this fundraiser is Marketplace Chevrolet Buick.  Funds raises will benefit the NDHS Band.

Logansport Football Star Tonzaiha Bland Earns National Football Foundation Award

By Doug Ireland

Tonzaiha Bland was a building block for the Logansport High School football team the last four years, with his bulk and sheer strength providing a game-changing attribute for the Tigers on the offensive and defensive lines.

He has also been an anchor for the team and a shining example for Logansport students of all ages with his academic excellence.

That combination earned Bland, a senior at LHS, a place among nine north Louisiana senior scholar-athletes honored last week in Shreveport at the annual National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete Awards Banquet.

Receiving NFF Scholar-Athlete Awards and $500 scholarship grants along with Bland were Caleb Aillet of Byrd, West Monroe’s Tag Banks, St. Mary’s Graeme Fidelak, Luke Gibson of Mangham, Connor Heard from Minden, Benton’s R.J. Moore and Jed Worthey III of Cedar Creek.

Head football coaches around north Louisiana nominated senior players who carry at least a 3.2 cumulative grade point average, have earned all-district honors and are involved in extracurricular activities. Logansport Tigers’ coach Kevin Magee nominated Bland.

Bland was anything but for the Tigers, who reached the Class A state finals in his senior season. Magee says Bland is by far the strongest player he’s ever coached, and even considering Magee’s years as quarterback at Northwestern State, Bland may be as strong as any player he’s been around. A 415-pound bench press and a 650-pound squad lift make the case.

An offensive and defensive lineman for the Tigers, Bland made LSWA and LHSCA All-State first team on the defensive front. He earned first-team All-District 3-1A honors both ways in his last two seasons at LHS. He is a shot putter on the track and field team.

Bland carries a 3.2 GPA and plans to major in architecture at Louisiana Tech, or nursing either at Tech or Northwestern.

The event hosted by the NFF’s S.M. McNaughton Chapter of North Louisiana is annually coordinated by Logansport native Toni Mitchell Goodin, the chapter’s secretary.

Retired Northwestern football coach Sam Goodwin received the McNaughton chapter’s Contributions to Amateur Football Award. He is the winningest football coach in Northwestern history with 102 wins from 1983-99. His Demons won conference championships in 1984, 1988, 1997 and 1998, making FCS playoff appearances in the latter three seasons and reaching the national semifinals in 1998.

The winner of the McNaughton Chapter’s Distinguished American Award was George Sirven, who has managed KTBS-TV as the station emerged as a significant community partner with its sponsorship of major events such as the Freedom Fest Fourth of July celebration, and promotion of many civic causes including St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

Last fall, KTBS celebrated the 25th anniversary of its popular Friday Football Fever scoreboard show, which was just named Best Sports Show by the Louisiana Association of Broadcasters. The native Cuban is a naturalized American citizen who early in his television career shot high school football footage for Griffin when both worked for KSLA-TV.

North Desoto’s Evan Howe Earns KTBS/Johnny’s Pizza Bob Griffin Scholarship

By Doug Ireland

Evan Howe of North DeSoto High School was among nine north Louisiana senior scholar-athletes along honored last Thursday night at the annual National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete Awards Banquet.

Receiving NFF Scholar-Athlete Awards and scholarship grants were Caleb Aillet of Byrd, West Monroe’s Tag Banks, Tonzaiha Bland of Logansport, St. Mary’s Graeme Fidelak, Luke Gibson of Mangham, Connor Heard from Minden, Benton’s R.J. Moore and Jed Worthey III of Cedar Creek.

Howe was the first recipient of the KTBS/Johnny’s Pizza Bob Griffin Scholarship, named in tribute of the iconic local TV sportscaster who covered area high school football and other sports for over a half-century. Griffin was also on the local NFF chapter’s board of directors.

Not only is Howe a well-decorated football player, but he’s also been part of a championship fishing team at North DeSoto. A hard-hitting linebacker, he was a two-year first-team all-district choice and made the All-Area first team last fall, also earning All-State honorable mention.

Carrying a 3.8 grade point average, Howe was already taking high school classes in algebra and English as an eighth-grader. He has continued to challenge himself academically with Advanced Placement classes in high school.

Howe helped with hurricane relief efforts in south Louisiana last year. He plans to attend Northwestern State and will compete on the Demons’ fishing team.

Head football coaches around north Louisiana nominated senior players who carry at least a 3.2 cumulative grade point average, have earned all-district honors and are involved in extracurricular activities. North DeSoto coach Dennis Dunn nominated Howe.

Logansport native Toni Mitchell Goodin is the secretary of the S.M. McNaughton north Louisiana chapter of the NFF and is the catalyst behind the annual awards dinner at East Ridge Country Club in Shreveport.

Also honored at the event were legendary retired Northwestern State football coach Sam Goodwin (Contributions to Amateur Football Award) and longtime KTBS-TV general manager George Sirven (Distinguished American Award).

Goodwin is the winningest football coach in Northwestern history with 102 wins from 1983-99. His Demons won conference championships in 1984, 1988, 1997 and 1998, making FCS playoff appearances in the latter three seasons and reaching the national semifinals in 1998.

Thirty-eight of his players reached the NFL, and 22 won All-American honors, including College Football Hall of Fame member Gary Reasons. Goodwin also coached 1998 National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete winner Dr. William Broussard and two other Academic All-Americans, along with 42 all-conference selections. After ending his collegiate coaching and administrative career, his love for coaching the game returned him to prep football sidelines in Arkansas and then back in Louisiana at Pineville, Alexandria Senior High, Natchitoches Central, Lakeview and St. Mary’s.

The Pineville native is in the Southland Conference Hall of Honor, NSU’s N-Club Hall of Fame, and the hall of fame at his alma mater (Henderson State) and the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame for his playing career at Henderson and his high school coaching accomplishments in the 1970s at Little Rock-Parkview, where his teams won five state championships in the nine seasons he started the program and coached there.

Sirven has managed KTBS as the station emerged as a significant community partner with its sponsorship of major events such as the Freedom Fest Fourth of July celebration, and promotion of many civic causes including St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

Last fall, KTBS celebrated the 25th anniversary of its popular Friday Football Fever scoreboard show, which was just named Best Sports Show by the Louisiana Association of Broadcasters. The native Cuban is a naturalized American citizen who early in his television career shot high school football footage for Griffin when both worked for KSLA-TV.

Durham Indictments: Trump Really Was Spied On

By Royal Alexander

In the midst of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, historic inflation, record high gas prices and the inexplicable confusion some people have regarding whether men should be allowed to compete against girls in sports, it would be easy to have overlooked the report a few weeks ago of special prosecutor, John Durham.  It also doesn’t help that the national so-called media, once again, was slow to cover the story and did so only cursorily when it did.

What did we learn from the first installation of these startling court filings?

The crux of the filing is that an internet services company and its owner, Rodney Joffe, “exploited his access to non-public and/or proprietary Internet data” including “Internet traffic pertaining to the Executive Office of the President of the United States.”  Joffe was not only monitoring internet traffic to the White House during the Trump presidency but also internet traffic to Trump Tower and President Trump’s apartment on Central Park West.

I note that every time a government website is accessed the individual accessing it has to acknowledge they have the right to do so, or they will be subject to prosecution, so hacking the White House servers is certainly an indictable offense.  However, what happened here is a classic insider attack because a system can never be secure from people who are authorized to access it and who are unethical or crooked.  Joffe’s company had the technical authorization, if not the legal authority, to access the server under the contract but of course only for the legitimate purpose of the contract.  (Joffe’s scheme was to monitor Trump’s servers using access to internet traffic granted to him and his company under a DOD cybersecurity contract).

In perhaps the understatement of the year, the Wall Street Journal noted that “White House communications are supposed to be secure, and the notion that any contractor—much less one with ties to a presidential campaign—could access them is alarming enough.  The implication that the data was exploited for a political purpose is a scandal that requires investigation under oath.” (WSJ, 2-15-22).  Will that ever happen at a time when the Deep State in D.C. holds so much power? Probably not.

Many of us have believed this for years but national “media” and social media further underscored their obvious double standard in the way they ignored and actively suppressed the Clinton corruption story which is demonstrably true—versus their saturation coverage of the purely speculative Trump/Russia collusion story—which is demonstrably false, as Robert Mueller and his team made clear after $32 million dollars and 18 months of investigation.

As Fox News Contributor, Jason Chaffetz, explains the bombshell revelations contained in the Durham filings “could have profound implications on Americans’ ability to trust our institutions.”   The Durham filings confirm what so many Americans already suspected—that President Donald Trump was right about his opponents infiltrating his private information—including during the time he was president and in the White House—and that Hillary Clinton’s campaign consistently lied to the American people about it. 

We should enumerate the several astounding conclusions that can be drawn from the filings:

One, our federal government can’t be trusted to protect our data.  Secondly, our White House communications are not secure. (How is this even possible?).  Thirdly, U.S. Intelligence Agencies like the FBI can be and have been weaponized for partisan politics.  We can no longer trust our law enforcement agencies or federal courts to investigate, prosecute and try people on a non-partisan basis.  The existence of a federal investigation may or may not be rooted in real evidence of criminal actions, depending on whom their subject is.  Fourth, if there was any remaining doubt there is no longer that we cannot trust mainstream news outlets who buried this story. (See also the 2020 Hunter Biden laptop story which the often-dishonest media only now, in March 2022, acknowledges was a major story, one damaging to the Biden presidential campaign).  Fifth, there is simply no justice—no equal protection of the laws—if Hillary Clinton and those around her are not held accountable.  (Jason Chaffetz, 2-16-22, FOX).

The point here is that some very bad actors involved in the Hillary for America campaign worked together to manufacture false information to make it look like Trump was conspiring with Russia.  They delivered the false information to the FBI and CIA in order to prompt an investigation which they could then have the media report on, making it look like the Trump-Russia collusion allegations had substance behind them when they clearly did not.

The conclusion is that Trump was spied on by the FBI later (through illegally obtained FISA warrants) but by Hillary’s campaign initially and the entirety of the Trump-Russia allegations were made up out of whole cloth by the Hillary for America campaign, which paid handsomely for them.

These filings make painfully clear that we are at a point in American history that a presumption of falsity and untrustworthiness must be made whenever our national media or government institutions make a “statement” regarding the “news.”  There is simply no reason to believe them at face value, and every reason not to.

The WSJ concludes that the “unfolding information” contained in the Durham filings “underscores that the Russia collusion story was one of the dirtiest tricks in U.S. political history … and Mr. Durham should tell the whole sordid story.”

LSWA Class B All-State Basketball

By DANIEL GREEN written for the LSWA

Editor’s Note:  One player from DeSoto Parish got Honorable Mention.  Stanley Lady Panther Maggie Walker.  The Stanley girls made it to round two of the playoffs this season until beaten by Zwolle.  Here is Green’s report:

Winning Class B basketball titles is nothing new for Fairview’s Rylee Cloud or Jordan Crawford of Simsboro. Their teams have won the last three LHSAA Class B championships.

The senior duo now adds another major honor to their career resume. Crawford and Cloud were selected as the Outstanding Player award winners on the Class B All-State squads selected by the Louisiana Sports Writers Association.

Cloud is a University of Arkansas softball signee. She was the lone returning starter for Fairview, where expectations are always high. However, Cloud and her teammates overachieved, according to head coach Kyle Jinks.

The result was a third title in a row with Cloud in a lead role averaging 26 points, five rebounds, four assists and four steals per game to lead the way. Two of Cloud’s teammates, Reesie Jinks and Bella Smith also made the all-state squad.

Crawford is joined by teammates Nick Maryland and Chilaydren Newton on the LSWA squad. Crawford averaged 16 points a game and grabbed eight rebounds per outing and was a district MVP.

Oak Hill’s Kaci West, who won a state championship as a player at Starks, and Lacassine’s Micah Rasberry netted Coach of the Year honors.

West guided Oak Hill to the most single-season wins in school history and a first-ever appearance. West’s squad rallied past Anacoco to reach the state finals for the first time in school history. Oak Hill’s Alexis Dyer also was selected for the first team.

Rasberry and Lacassine had a remarkable season. The Cardinals earned the No. 4 seed in the playoffs and reached the LHSAA tourney for the first time in many years. The Cardinals lost to eventual champion Simsboro in the semifinals.



First team

Player School Ht. Cl Avg.

Jordan Crawford Simsboro 6-2 Sr. 16.0

Kenneth Montgomery Zwolle Jr 6-0 Jr. 19.0

Dustin Welch Anacoco 6-3 So. 20.0

Nick Maryland Simsboro 6-3 Sr. 16.0

Aaron Garcia Lacassine 6-0 Jr. 20.0

Second team

Player School Ht. Cl Avg.

Jamaria Clark Doyline 6-2 Jr. 31.0

Chilaydren Newton Simsboro 6-4 Jr. 18.0

Bret Jinks Fairview 5-8 Jr. 17.0

Chris Williams Choudrant 6-2 Sr. 20.0

Ethan Roberts Saline 6-3 Sr. 18.0



Honorable mention

Brylon Tyler, J.S. Clark; Jamaria Markray, Doyline; Jake Forbes, Holden; Steve Seamons, Forest; Gage Remedies, Florien; Tyren Thomas, Zwolle; Landon Strother, Fairview; Conner Ashford, Lacassine; Bennett Briggs, Christ Episcopal;  Decorien Dixon, Country Day University Academy; Alex Kovall, Episcopal of Acadiana; Chase Taylor, Anacoco


First team

Player School Ht. Cl Avg.

Rylee Cloud, Fairview 5-5 Sr. 24.0

Alexis Dyer Oak Hill 5-10 So. 17.0

Bailey Davis Anacoco 5-10 So. 14.0

Madison Suire Hathaway 5-4 So. 17.0

Reesie Jinks Fairview 5-5 Fr. 15.0

Second team

Player School Ht. Cl Avg.

Chloey Guidry Hathaway 5-4 Sr. 21.0

Latoya Holmes Florien 5-6 Jr. 10.0

Bella Smith Fairview 5-11 Jr. 14.0

Cambree Courtney Holden 5-9 Jr. 15.0

Natalie Yancey Glenmora 5-4 So. 15.0



Honorable mention

Jalexia Caldwell, Castor; Kylee Portilloz, Choudrant; Cali Deal, Quitman; Ikeia Brown, Simsboro; Lexi Parker, Family Community; Maggie Walker, Stanley; Olivia Sepulvado, Zwolle; Emma Tucker, Oak Hill; Gracie Miller, Midland; Sydnie Cooley, Lacassine; Kaiya Causey, Negreet; Paige Mayo, Anacoco.

Men of Prayer To Hold Cross Walk

Good Friday there will be a Cross Walk. Organizers say It will begin at North DeSoto High School at 9:00 am.  The walk will go north on Hwy 171 to Stonewall Frierson Rd and then coming back south on Hwy 171 to the school.  The distance will be 7 miles. 

The public is invited to take part in the entire walk, or you can do part of it.  There will be transportation to and from the school if needed. 

Anyone may participate: Men, Women, Students and Families.  The Good Friday Cross Walk is April 15th from 9:00 am until 12:30 pm.

Bass Fishing Ban Coming

By Steve Graf, Ranger/Daiwa Pro Staff

Well, we knew this day was coming, but I did not expect it to be in my lifetime. Bass fishing is being attacked, and some states are looking to ban it by 2025. It really angers me to know that a form of our heritage is being taken away by a minority group that would rather hug a tree or kiss a bass rather than eating one. These people who stand at boat ramps and protest any form of angling are the same people pushing the “New Green Deal” that President Biden ran on. While this can be upsetting and make you angry, make sure to read the entire article to get my full perspective.

If this doesn’t get every outdoorsman’s attention, I don’t know what will. Since I was a kid in the early 70’s, I’ve heard about people who don’t believe in fishing. They think that the pain inflicted on a bass as it is caught is inhumane. Now understand, they have no proof of this other than those in their group who have the ability to communicate with fish. Fish have said to them that the pain and suffering they go through is uncalled for and unnecessary. According to the tree huggers, the fish feel that no one has stood up for them until now. The fish have spoken and are tired of people thinking they know what’s best for them. So, I wanted to hear their side of the story.

To complete my own study, I decided to Google “fish language” on the internet, and to my amazement I discovered an online class that would teach me “fish language” so that I could do my own research and interview largemouth bass. This course really was a challenge even with my B.S. degree from Northwestern State. I was never one to try and learn a new language, but I felt it was vital for me to be able to get a true perspective as to what bass go through. After six weeks of intense bass language study, I was ready! Now all I needed was some bass to talk with and see things from their perspective.

How was I going to capture some bass for my study? Ha…I grabbed my Daiwa rod and reel combo (valued at $500), hooked up my Ranger bass boat and headed to Lake X. The first thing I noticed after arriving at the lake was that I could hear the fish talking underwater as I backed my boat in the water. I never noticed this before until I learned “fish language.” You know sound travels extremely well in and across water. It was so loud; it was like being at a rock concert with Hootie and the BlowFish, a very popular band in the fish world. Since learning to speak “fish language,” I now was hearing things in a whole other manner. Only someone who knows “fish language” can ever relate to what I’m talking about. 

Now for my study…after making my very first cast, I hooked a good size largemouth bass. I listened intently as the hooked fish jumped, but there was no sound, no screaming or moaning. I thought, “That’s strange, nothing at all….not a sound was made.” Now you would think if hooking a fish really hurt, there would be some horrifying sounds echoing across the water as the fished jumped trying to throw my bait out of its mouth. What I did hear was other fish cheering the hooked bass on and encouraging him to throw the bait back to me…kind of like how bulls cheer on other bulls as they try to throw the cowboy off during a rodeo. The bass were actually more excited to see if their friend could succeed at getting rid of the bait that hooked him.

As I continued to reel and bring the fish on board my $85,000 Ranger boat, still no screaming, no chirping, no howling. But this is where my “fish language” course finally paid off. I asked the fish if being hooked hurt him? His response absolutely blew me away when he said, “No.”  I then asked, “Well, do other bass feel pain when they are hooked?” Again, the bass said, ”No,” but shared that one thing that really bothers them is when humans allow them to flop on the deck of the boat, especially those with carpet as it takes their protective slime off their bodies which can lead to infections.  So, I finally had my proof that fish really don’t feel pain from being hooked. I had heard it straight from the horses (or in this case) the bass’s mouth. I thanked him for participating in my study and released him unharmed back into the lake like all good bass anglers do.

My conclusion was this…just like our political parties today, they make up fake news for their own benefit. Now we all know that there is no “fish language” course you can take, but to make this article more believable I thought it was necessary that you think that. Again, our politicians do this every single day; they make stuff up that they think we will believe.  They think we are like bass in that we have a brain the size of a pea. So, is it true that bass fishing will be banned by 2025? Probably not, but I thought it would be a good April Fool’s joke!!! Till next time, good luck, good fishing and don’t forget to set the hook….especially now that you know bass feel no pain!!!   

Seeing Through Different Eyes

Recently in his World History class, Jeremy Burnett and his students were analyzing the advancements in technology during WWI through the eyes of a journalist. They discussed how WWI ushered in the use of gas/chemical warfare which affected everyone, including women and children.

To give the World History students at North DeSoto High a little more realism to the lesson on the difficulties of wearing gas masks and performing everyday tasks,  Mr. Burnett taught the lesson wearing a modern era gas mask.  It was a sight to see!

(Editor’s note: The lesson is very topical with reports in the news that Russia is considering the use of chemical and biological weapons in the war against Ukraine.  World treaties following World War I outlawed the use of chemical weapons.  The Geneva Protocol outlining chemical weapons in warfare was signed in 1925.  Russia (as the Soviet Union ratified the protocol in 1928.)

Notice of Death – Friday, April 1, 2022

Lucy Hunter

January 22, 1946 to March 25, 2022

Saturday Services April 2, 2022 at 2:00 pm at Jenkins Funeral Home Chapel.

Irma McDuffy

August 3, 1939 to March 27, 2022

Saturday Services April 2, 2022 at 11:00 am at Springville B.C. Coushatta, La.

Katie L. DeWitt-Price

March 12, 1950 to March 26, 2022

Saturday Services April 2, 2022 at 11:00 am at Jenkins Funeral Home Chapel.

ETC… For Friday, April 1, 2022

The Scholastic Book Fair rolled out of Logansport High Thursday morning. Thank you to all the moms, dads, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and everyone else that sent money to be spent.  Total sales:  $7,140.60.  Teachers were able to spend $1523.73 for books for their classrooms.

River City Fest Parade Entry deadline is tomorrow.  All parade entries must be turned in by Saturday, April 2.  Don’t miss out, we’re gonna have one heck of a good time.

Another reminder that today, April 1st is the deadline to apply for the DeSoto Schools summer intern program.

Celebrate Recovery Stonewall is holding a special worship service tonight. Tell a friend. Bring a friend. Be a friend is the motto.  The service will be at 7:00 pm tonight at Stonewall United Pentecostal Church.

Severe Thunderstorm Warning

The National Weather Service in Shreveport has issued a

* Severe Thunderstorm Warning for…

  Southeastern De Soto Parish in northwestern Louisiana…

  Western Red River Parish in northwestern Louisiana…

  West central Natchitoches Parish in northwestern Louisiana…

  Southwestern Bienville Parish in northwestern Louisiana…

  Northwestern Sabine Parish in northwestern Louisiana…

  Southeastern Shelby County in eastern Texas…

  Northern Sabine County in eastern Texas…

* Until 1145 AM CDT.

* At 1101 AM CDT, severe thunderstorms were located along a line

  extending from 14 miles south of Bossier City to 10 miles east of

  Stonewall to Mansfield to 16 miles east of Logansport to 6 miles

  west of Converse to 6 miles southeast of Patroon to Rosevine,

  moving east at 35 mph.

  HAZARD…60 mph wind gusts.

Voters Turn Out To Upset Incumbents

DeSoto Parish residents went to the polls Saturday and cleaned house.  Incumbent mayors running for re-election were turned down outright or forced into a runoff.

According to the unofficial vote count from the Louisiana Secretary of State’s Office, DeSoto Police Juror from District 4D, Thomas Jones gathered the most votes in a three man race.  Jones got 43% of the vote.  Incumbent John Mayweather, Sr. came in second with 34%.  And Joseph Hall, Jr. gathered 23% of the vote.  That will put Mayweather and Jones into a runoff election.

Challenger Ken Kaffka took the Mayor’s office in Stonewall.  Kaffka gathered 58% of the vote to Mayor Randy Rodgers’ 42%.

And Longstreet Mayor Wanda Sue Lewis Fields lost to challenger Connie Jackson.  Jackson overwhelmed Fields with 67% of votes cast.

Results from the four Alderman races in Mansfield show one incumbent victorious and one defeated.  Christopher Washington Thomas, representing District B won.  Kevin Campbell lost his District E seat.  Districts C & D had newcomers and in District C Vicki Jackson won.  In District D Antonio Washington was elected.

In the multi-parish Judge Court of Appeal race, Erin Leigh Waddell Garrett polled 57% of the ballots while Craig Marcotte got 43% of the vote.  District wide with 92 of 159 precincts reported, Marcotte had 57% to Waddell Garrett’s 43%.

Statewide Principal of the Year Candidate From NDHS

DeSoto Schools and North Desoto High are proud of one of their own going for a statewide honor.

We are excited to announce, Mrs. Tamela Phillips, North DeSoto High School Principal, has been named a Louisiana Principal of the Year Semifinalist!  We are proud of you, Mrs. Phillips!  You are the DeSoto difference!

The Louisiana Department of Education will announce the winner later.

Tornado Watch and Hazardous Weather Outlook

Tornado watch outline update by the NWS storm prediction center at Norman, Oklahoma at 5:25 am Wednesday, March 30, 2022.

Tornado watch 75 is in effect until 1:00 pm CDT for DeSoto Parish and a large area of North Central Louisiana, Arkansas, and east Texas.

Earlier on Tuesday the Shreveport office of the National Weather Service issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook for most of Northwest Louisiana including Red River Parish.

Showers and thunderstorms will become widespread beginning near sunrise this morning and continuing across the remainder of the region during the day Wednesday before the storms move east of the region Wednesday Evening.

The primary threats associated with these storms will be damaging wind gusts and isolated tornadoes. Some of these storms could also produce large hail and brief heavy downpours.

Kansas basketball: A psychiatrist’s dream

By Teddy Allen

Kansas is a 4.5-points favorite against Villanova Saturday in the first of two NCAA Tournament semifinal games. Duke and North Carolina will follow at approximately 7:49; the Blue Devils are a 4-points favorite.

Hello, Awesome Saturday Night. Except …

If you see a Kansas fan between now and then, and if he or she is gnawing on tree bark and unable to mumble a complete sentence, move along. Yes, the Jayhawks are favorites. Yes, Kansas has a basketball tradition as rich as anyone’s.

But yes, Kansas come Tournament time is a heartache waiting to happen.

East Coast. West Coast. Midwest. Deep South. Historically, the Kansas basketball program has arguably left more hoop-loving hearts broken all over this great land and on the Final Four Road than any other program that’s ever dared nail up a peach basket.

They’ve got the awesome old-school gym. The simple, bright, cheerful uniforms you could probably wear to church and get away with. That happy-go-lucky Jayhawk mascot.

It’s a program that’s strung together a ridiculous 31 straight NCAA Tournament appearances, the most ever. All the Jayhawks do is win.

Until it’s time to finish. Kansas has only three NCAA Tournament titles in its illustrious history.

Which is three more than lots of programs, for sure. Most anyone would trade for what Kansas has been able to do, generation after generation.

And still, their reputation is that of a Bracket Buster. Kansas giveth, and Kansas taketh away. Saturday will mark the program’s 16th trip to the Final Four, which means that for all their trips to the mountaintop, the Jayhawks have left as King of the Hill only once every five times.

They’ve been runners-up six times, college basketball’s equivalent of baseball’s 1950s’ Brooklyn Dodgers and 1990s’ Atlanta Braves.

Bridesmaids City.

Recent history:

In 2010, Northern Iowa, historically one of the finest programs in all of the great state of Iowa, bounced them out.

In 2011 as the Tournament’s No.1-seed, Kansas was dismissed by VCU in the Elite Eight. (Time flies; Shaka Smart seems like last week.)

2014, they got Stanford-ed, although it’s important to remember that Kansas was Joel Embiid-less thanks to an unfortunate injury.

2016 and 2018, well, we’ll come back to that in a sec.

In 2020, the Jayhawks were ranked No. 1 in some polls and … The Ultimate Indignity … the Tournament was pandemically cancelled.

So here they are again with head-scratching Kansas, never ranked No. 1 this season, yet champions of the Midwest Regional and the only No.1 Regional seed left in the ballgame. If you are a Kansas fan, you are probably preparing for a dagger where it hurts.

But who knows? Bill Self could become just the 16th guy in the college game to win multiple national titles. Kansas could do what the 1952 and Self’s 2008 team did and win it all.

Very un-Kansas-like, they’ve even won it when they weren’t supposed to. I happened to be there hanging around in Kemper Arena in Kansas City in 1988 when “Danny Manning and the Miracles,” a 6-seed, upset No.1 Oklahoma, 34-3 and winners of 21 of its last 22 games, 83-79. The game was tied 50-50 at the half, the small (for a Final Four) arena was an explosion of cheers and colors and gasps and drama, and the whole thing was more fun than a little bit.

And maybe the same will be true this weekend. Maybe. With Kansas being a favorite over Villanova in the Saturday semis, that’s a step in the right direction.

Except … remember we mentioned 2016 and 2018? Kansas played Villanova in the tournament both those years. And lost. First, in 2016 when the Jayhawks were the top-seeded team in the tournament.

And then in 2018, when Kansas lost to the underdog Wildcats … in the semifinals.

Contact Teddy at

Fellowship Community Church

Celebration on the Hill is one of the biggest events of the year at Fellowship Community Church.  On April 16th it is the annual Celebration on the Hill. 

The celebration will feature food trucks, bounce houses, a mechanical bull and of course a huge Easter egg hunt. Everything runs from 11:00 am until 1:00 pm. 

The church asks that you register your child for the egg hunts here:

And don’t forget to bring Chairs and picnic blanket, Easter baskets, money for the food trucks, and plenty of sunscreen.

Fellowship Community Church is located on US 171 just north of Kickapoo.

Summer Intern Program

DeSoto Schools announced the launching of the DeSoto Summer Internship Program. During the summer students will be allowed the opportunity to earn a wage of $10.00 an hour while working in various roles throughout the district. During these internships, students will apply skills learned in the classroom to real-life situations while also learning the soft skills necessary to be successful in the workplace.

DeSoto Summer Internship Program will be an 8 week program allowing students to work 20-32 hours Monday-Thursday each week. The program runs May 23, 2022 – July 29, 2022.

Students will not work June 24, 2022 – July 10, 2022.

DeSoto Summer Internship Program will have positions available at most schools and with the maintenance department. The Maintenance Department includes Operations, IT, Transportation and Food Service. 

To be eligible to apply, students must be 16 years or older and a student of DeSoto Parish Schools, have reliable transportation to and from work, have at least one letter of recommendation from school staff, and have a resume.

If you are interested in applying for a summer internship, please complete an application using the Google Form below. Application Deadline will be April 1, 2022. Interviews will be at school level the week of April 19, 2022.

Click DeSoto Summer Internship Program Application or visit:

Outpatient Medical Center

Outpatient Medical Center is recruiting a nurse practitioner, physician assistant, or a physician to provide primary care at its Natchitoches or Leesville location.  We are a federally-qualified health center offering weekday ambulatory primary care to anyone, but especially the underserved. 

A rewarding career serving those with greatest need, excellent benefits, no Holidays, and competitive pay for a workstyle that supports a family life. 

Anyone interest may contact us at or call 318-357-2071 (ext. 3202).

The Influence of Misfortune Upon the Gifted

By Brad Dison

When Mary Porter was in her final year of high school, she wrote an essay entitled “The Influence of Misfortune Upon the Gifted.”  She had no way of knowing how well that title fit the life of her son, William Sydney Porter.  In 1882, twenty-year-old William Sidney Porter decided to relocate from Greensboro, North Carolina to rural Texas to alleviate his persistent coughing.  While in Texas, William worked as laborer on a sheep ranch, as a surveyor, as a newspaper writer and cartoonist at the Houston Post, and finally, in 1891, as a paying and receiving teller for the First National Bank of Austin.  During his tenure at the bank, William worked part time on a humorous weekly newspaper of his own creation called The Rolling Stone.

It was while he was working for the First National Bank of Austin that misfortune struck.  In 1894, William’s boss accused him of embezzling $1,100.00.  William defended himself as well as he could, but the bank’s accounting ledgers were rarely balanced due its “loose methods.” He explained that he had been a loyal employee of the bank for four years.  There was nothing William could say that would save his job.  After being fired, William worked on The Rolling Stone full time.  He was lucky not to be prosecuted.

In 1895, William moved with his family to Houston to work at the Houston Post after The Rolling Stone failed to turn a profit.  William’s luck ran out when the First National Bank of Austin was audited.  After reviewing the bank’s ledgers, the federal auditor found evidence of embezzlement.  William’s ex-boss told the auditor that William had been fired for embezzling money.  William was indicted on the embezzlement charge and arrested in Houston.  William’s father posted bail and William was released.  His trial was set for July 7, 1896.

On the day before his trial was to begin, after much discussion with his wife, William fled to New Orleans then took a ship to Honduras.  At the time, Honduras had no extradition treaty with the United States.  William’s wife, Athol, and daughter, Margaret, were to join William in Honduras at a later date.  Misfortune struck William again when his wife contracted Tuberculosis.  Despite being a fugitive, William quickly returned to Austin to be with his wife.  William’s wife, 29-year-old Athol Estes Porter, died on July 25, 1897.

While grieving over the loss of his wife, William stood trial for embezzlement.  He tried to persuade anyone who would listen that he was innocent, but on February 17, 1898, he was found guilty and sentenced to five years in prison.  He began serving his prison sentence at the Ohio Penitentiary in Columbus, Ohio the following month.  It must be noted that William’s predecessor in the job had a nervous breakdown and his successor tried to commit suicide.  The First National Bank of Austin, the loosely-run bank in which William was convicted of embezzling of money, eventually failed.

William was able to turn the misfortune of prison into a fortunate situation.  One newspaper reporter claimed “The prison term, to a man of Porter’s sensitive temperament and culture—he was of the best blood of Virginia and North Carolina—was crushing, yet it revived and stimulated his genius.”  For the entirety of his prison term, William wrote short stories with a fervor.  He knew no one would publish stories sent from a convicted criminal in the penitentiary, so William enlisted the help of a friend.  Each time he completed a story, William mailed it to his friend.  Upon receiving it, his friend discarded the prison envelope, addressed a new envelope to William’s publisher, and the publisher was none the wiser.  To ensure that no one learned that the stories were written by a convict, William chose a pen name that he had used on occasion. 

William’s stories became wildly popular.  Newspapers proclaimed after his death that his “name and fame…is secure in American literature.  He was one American writer who was touched with the fire of genius.  After Poe, he was the greatest American master of the short story, and in depicting American life he excelled Poe and was equal to Mark Twain.”  William entered prison “a man chastened by misfortune.”  He emerged as an American icon, a man “whose genius had been stimulated and inspired.”  William Sydney Porter became famous for stories such as “The Gift of the Magi,” “The Ransom of Red Chief,” and “The Caballero’s Way” in which he introduced his most famous character, Cisco Kid.  His pen name was … O. Henry.


  1. Austin American-Statesman, August 1, 1897. P.3.
  2. The Chattanooga News, November 3, 1916, p.4.

Photo caption: William Porter Working in the Teller Cage of First National Bank of Austin circa 1892

Refuge of Hope Church

The DeSoto Parish Chamber Of Commerce welcomed Refuge Of Hope Church to the community. Their doors are now open, and they invite you to join them on Sundays at 9 AM for prayer, 10 AM for Sunday School, 11 AM and again at 6 PM for worship. They also have a midweek service on Thursday night at 7:30 PM.

Refuge of Hope Church is an Independent Holiness Pentecostal Ministry. Their focus is to reach the lost, those bound by sin, addictions, and who have lost hope. They have experience working in prison ministry and drug rehabilitation.

As partners with the Shreveport Pregnancy Center and the future new Pregnancy Center opening in De Soto parish this summer, they are excited to reach the community with the gospel and to share their testimony of the hope and refuge they found in Christ.

They’re located 2 miles off I-49 near Carmel at 4797 Hwy 509. The pastor, Douglas Christian, welcomes your questions and calls. His number is 318-663-4003.

Men of Prayer April

The monthly Men of Prayer gathering will be the first Thursday in April at the Community Center in Stonewall.

Robbie Gatti does a lot of great things.  But if you really stand back and watch him, you will soon realize that one of the greatest things he does is share the Gospel.  There have been lives impacted and changed by his determination to spread what our God is all about.

Come out and hear him on April 7th at Men Of Prayer in Stonewall.  You will also experience powerful worship, music and a great manly meal.

Fish Fry A Success

The March edition of Clara Springs Camp’s Fourth Friday Fish Fry is being termed a success.  There was a great number of people served.  And the meal was outstanding.

Clara Springs said, “Thank you Westside Baptist Church (Natchitoches) for helping us at our March Fourth Friday Fish Fry. 367 people were served. It was a great time of fellowship and of course delicious fried fish!”

Clara Springs Camp is located in southern DeSoto Parish near Pleasant Hill.