Win $100 This Week

This is the first week of the Marketplace Chevrolet College Football Pickers Contest. Enter
today. Someone will win $100 this week.

Everyone in the parish is invited to guess the winner of ten area college football games.
And there are a couple of local high school games to guess the number of points scored as
tie breakers. The entry coming closest to correct will win the money.

Deadline to enter is 4:00 pm Friday. CLICK HERE to enter and win!

Gloster man taken into custody

News Release
August 28, 2023
Sheriff Jayson Richardson
DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office

At 10:22am on August 28, 2023, 911 Dispatchers received a call from an individual claiming to have shot his mother inside a residence on Meadow Drive in Gloster, LA. Upon arrival, deputies were able to make contact with the caller/suspected shooter, identified as Seth Strickland, a 24 year old white male from Gloster. Strickland was immediately taken into custody. Simultaneously, other responding deputies made their way into the residence where they located the suspects mother, Joyce Strickland (49yo white female), on the floor. Investigators with the DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office also responded and this incident remains under investigation.

Mrs. Strickland was pronounced deceased at the scene as a result of one apparent gun shot to the back of the head. At this hour, Mrs. Strickland’s family has been notified. Seth Strickland was transported to the DeSoto Detention Center where he was booked on a charge of 2nd Degree Murder. On behalf of Sheriff Richardson and staff, we send our condolences to the family during this difficult time.

74th Demon Battalion hosts Activation Ceremony

By Sid Hall, Military Affairs Coordinator / ROTC Program Manager

Northwestern State University’s Department of Military Science conducted an Activation Ceremony for the 74th Demon Battalion on Aug. 24. The military tradition allows the commander to assess the readiness and discipline of the unit and commemorates the unit’s history and lineage. ROTC’s curriculum and training ensures Cadets’ scholastic, athletic, and leadership abilities are developed and tested, preparing each for their unique career paths.

“We are extremely excited for the new year. Not only is this our largest freshman class in over 25 years, but these Cadets are strong academically and physically,” said Lieutenant Colonel Josh Drake, professor of Military Science. “While we do not expect all of them to contract with the Army, although it would be amazing if they did, the Demon Battalion has boundless potential. It is an honor to teach and mentor them as each Cadet begins their lifelong journey.”

Joining the program this semester are Erica Babers of Natchitoches, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing; Rachel Bell of Shreveport, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems; Jamar Benjamin of Natchitoches, pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice; Kyra Cole of DeRidder, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Psychology; Mya Dunn of Shreveport, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing; Miguel Flores of Ball, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering Technology; Megan Franchino of Santa Rita, Guam, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering Technology; Camryn Huff of Leesville, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing; TaLayja Jefferson of DeRidder, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, and Angelina Jones of Lafayette, Scholars’ College, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Biology; Grace Kerney of Barksdale Air Force Base, pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice.

Also joining are Malaiah Ledet of Alexandria, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing; Jemena Leopoldo of Vivian, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Health and Exercise Science; Miriam McDaniel of Natchez, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing; Jacob Mullican of DeRidder, Scholars’ College, pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in History; Ariel Rhodes of Shreveport, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing; Jackson Sabbides of Pineville, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Biology; James Shelton of Lafayette, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Molly Stelly of Lafayette, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, and Corneilya Williams of Leesville, pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Devonte Tanner and Cameron Willett are students at Louisiana State University-Alexandria. NSU’s Department of Military Science serves as their ROTC host program.

Also new to the Demon Battalion is Demarkus Lawson of Fort Johnson, pursuing a Master of Science in Homeland Security. With over three years as an enlisted soldier, Lawson joined the program under the Army’s Green to Gold program. After completion of the program and graduation, he will commission as an Army officer.

The Demon Battalion Commander and Command Sergeant Major, Cadet Lieutenant Colonel Loren Higginbotham and Cadet Command Sergeant Major Andrew Wesley, attached the streamer of the 74th Demon Battalion symbolizing the activation of the Battalion.

This year’s Battalion staff includes Battalion Executive Officer, Cadet Major Arianna Astorga of New Iberia; Battalion Operations Officer, Cadet Major Brendan Campbell of Pearland, Texas; Personnel Officer, Cadet Captain Jan Amutan of Bossier City; Intelligence and Recruiting Officer, Cadet Captain Caiden Matthews of Shreveport; Logistics Officer, Cadet Captain Breanna James of Stonewall; Communications Officer, Cadet Captain Brooklyn Guerra of Abbeville; Physical Training Officer, Cadet Captain Peyton Bordelon of Alexandria; and the Battalion’s Color Sergeant is Cadet Todd Gladish of Willis, TX.

In his remarks, Higginbotham offered this advice to the new cadets.

“This program is what you make of it. Apply yourself and push to exceed the standard. Work to make each day better than the last and embrace the family we have established here,” he said.

Cadets were then recognized for their summer achievements.

ROTC Advanced Camp is a 35-day training event designed to develop cadets’ critical thinking and problem-solving skills and forge them into tough, adaptable leaders who can thrive in ambiguous and complex environments. Higginbotham, Bordelon, Astorga, James, and Wesley completed Advanced Camp at Fort Knox, Kentucky.

Army ROTC Basic Camp is a 32-day training event designed to develop cadets’ leadership skills, train them on individual and junior leader tasks, and develop and reinforce the Warrior Ethos and Army Values. Cadet Lawson Turner of Haughton completed Basic Camp at Fort Knox.

Sophomore cadets stand in as the “enemy” on the opposing forces to facilitate Advanced Camp field training exercises. Cadet Christian Holmes volunteered for this duty, which will help to prepare him for Advanced Camp next summer.

Cadet Troop Leader Training provides the opportunity to shadow Army officers and learn first-hand how active duty units operate and conduct training. Three Demons participated this summer:

Cadet Astorga served with the 92nd Civil Affairs Battalion, U.S. Army Special Operations Command, Fort Liberty, NC.

At Fort Riley, Kansas, Cadet Bordelon served with the 541st Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 1st Sustainment Brigade, 1st Infantry Division and with A Company (Black Cats), 3rd Battalion (Assault Helicopter), 1st Aviation Regiment, Combat Aviation Brigade.

Cadet Wesley served with Commanche Troop, 5th Squadron, 7th Cavalry Regiment (Garry Owen), 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Georgia.

The scope of the Army Air Assault School is to train on missions performed by rotary wing aircraft, aircraft safety, aero-medical evacuation procedures, pathfinder operations, principles and techniques of combat assaults, rappelling techniques, and sling-load operations. Cadets Higginbotham and Matthews were recognized for earning their Air Assault wings. Both agree with the school’s moniker, “The Ten Toughest Days in the Army.”

Before closing out the ceremony, Wise Family Foundation Scholarships, established by the family of Major General (Retired) Erbon W. Wise of Sulphur, were awarded to first-year Cadets Jamar Benjamin, Megan Franchino and Molly Stelly.

Information on Northwestern State’s ROTC program is available at 

Pictured above ROTC Activation: NSU Demon Battalion Commander Cadet Lieutenant Colonel Loren Higginbotham, left, and Cadet Command Sergeant Major Andrew Wesley (facing away), assisted by Cadet Todd Gladish, left, attached the streamer of the 74th Demon Battalion symbolizing the activation of the Battalion during an Aug. 24 ceremony.

Bad ideas and brain cramps

Some things are plain stupid. No gray area.

3-D Dumb.

Some people I know where robbed recently, but in his haste the robber dropped a piece of paper that was, unfortunately for him, a personal reminder of his upcoming court appearance. It included his name and address.


And then there was the story out of Opelousas this week of the gentleman who stuck a handgun in his waistband. The gun was loaded, a live round in the chamber. It went off. Now, the man from Opelousas —and I use the term “man” loosely here — is not as loaded as he once was – although the story did contain the phrase “underwent reattachment surgery” and “Police had not determined why (stupid man’s name) was walking around with a pistol in his pants.”

Easy. No brain in his head.

Stupid move.

There are lots of ways to say that a guy’s parents don’t have to worry about the Yale Admissions Department clogging up the family doorway to offer their kid a scholarship. For no other reason than they make me laugh, I’ll offer my Top 10.

He’s a few crumbs short of a biscuit.
Somewhere, a village is missing its idiot.
It’s almost like he has a small piece of brain lodged in his head.
Dumb as a bag of hammers/sharp as a bowling ball.
He has a room temperature (or shoe-sized) IQ.
He’s a regular “Elbert” Einstein.
He’s lost all contact with the mothership.
He doesn’t have both oars in the water.
He fell out of the Stupid Tree and hit every branch on the way down.
My favorite: The wheel is turning but the hamster’s dead.

We all swallow a Stupid Pill from time to time.

But then there are things more along the lines of bad ideas. We call them mental muscle spasms. Brain cramps.

A boss buddy of mine found out the hard way this week that the letters T and G are very close to each other on the keyboard. For this reason, he will never be ending a work email with the phrase “Regards” again.

Muscle spasm.

I was told of a funeral in which the preacher, who kept candy in his desk, said that each Sunday morning the deceased would come into his office and, with a “Good morning!” and a smile, “go through my drawers.”

Brain cramp.

Finally, the worst idea I’ve heard of in a long time happened last week in Detroit, where Hall of Fame voice of the Detroit Tigers Ernie Harwell passed away at 92. A public viewing was held at Comerica Park, where the Tigers play. I am not a big “lying in state” guy to start with, but a casket on the warning track is off base on several levels. I didn’t like the picture of Ernie lying there, flowers all around, his statue by him, velvet ropes marking “foul ground,” for lack of a better term.

“Hey dad, remember when you took me to the ballpark and we saw Mr. Ernie dead?”

“Those were great times son!”

At least there was no danger of him being hit by a foul ball. At least the ballclub didn’t lay their humble, summer-sweet play-by-play guy out during a game. Thankfully, the Tigers were on the road.

As was, I guess, Ernie.

(Originally published May, 2010)

Contact Teddy at

What Can You Do for Me?

It’s always been a part of human DNA to be a little selfish. While we try not to be, it’s human nature to want more than the next person. All of us are trying to keep up with the Jones’s and I don’t mean the owner of the Dallas Cowboys. The Lord tells us in James 3:16, “For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.” As humans, we try to obey God’s command, but the sinful side seems to prevail more often than we would like to admit.

Today’s professional anglers have a tough time trying to avoid being selfish with so many anglers seeking sponsorship from specific companies. There’s only so much money companies are willing to part with to sponsor an angler, and the pool is shrinking.

Twenty years ago, anglers could go out on tournament day, catch a good five fish limit and cash a big check in order to draw the attention of sponsors. But times have changed. Fast forward to 2023 and that’s no longer good enough. Anglers now must have a personality and the ability to talk to people. They need good communication skills and must have a big social media presence.

Sponsors today want anglers who can sell a product and can represent their sponsors in a good way. Catching fish on tournament day is secondary. When anglers approach sponsors today, it’s not about how good an angler you are or how many tournaments you’ve won. Sponsors want to know what you as an angler can do for them and how much product you can sell. It’s all about what the business world calls ROI (return on investment).

These companies can be very demanding of an angler’s time by using them for promotional events like boat shows and speaking engagements. Catching fish today is not high on a sponsors list of what’s important to the sponsorship agreement. These anglers today are paid and, in some cases, paid extremely well to represent certain companies. But these demands can put a strain on an angler’s ability to compete consistently and can hinder his or her ability to prepare for an event. So, there must be a happy balance for both the angler and the sponsor.

During my time going around and speaking to high school fishing teams, the first question asked almost every single time is, “How do I get sponsors?” My response is always the same. First, don’t worry about sponsors. Learn how to find fish and develop your fishing skills so you can be competitive. Next, take speech in high school and college. Anglers today must have the ability to talk to people, make a good impression and sell a product. Then make sure you have a strong social media presence with a lot of followers. If you can do these things really well, sponsors will come to you.

Till next time, good luck, good fishing and don’t forget your sunscreen! Melanoma does not discriminate!

Steve Graf

Logansport Chamber of Commerce holds monthly meeting

Pictured: Senator Barry Milligan with Cora and Robert Billingsley

The Logansport Chamber of Commerce had their monthly meeting at the Logansport Library on Tuesday
evening, August 1. There were special guests in attendance that were recognized. Sheriff Jayson
Richardson, Senator Barry Milligan and the Robert Billingsleys.

Sheriff Richardson is the current president for the DeSoto Parish Chamber of Commerce. He spoke on
the success of the parish under his tenure as president and as sheriff.

Robert and Cora Billingsley were the donors of the building given to the Chamber. The building was once
the Western Auto Store where Mr. Billingsley spent much of his time in his earlier years working for his
parents. He is happy to contribute in making Logansport successful for another generation to enjoy.
Senator Barry Milligan is a first term senator. He is former military and when he was injured he turned
banker. He was raised in a small town and appreciated the honor of visiting Logansport. The Senator
spoke on his duties for our state and how much he loves serving as it reminds him of his service to our

Mayor Judge Cordray spoke up commending Senator Milligan for monies for the roads, canopies and
lights in Logansport. The new Community Center has also benefited from the monies from the state. He
also thanked Jayson for his service.

The folks in attendance dined on finger foods and a special cake for the occasion as the Chamber
conducted regular business. President James Walker recognized Tori Dyess, that owns Loco Gringos Hat
Company in Logansport, as she was able to make hats and take to a Jason Aldean concert in
Connecticut. She spoke of meeting the down to earth singer and was happy to support a “small town”

In other chamber business, President Walker talked about the improvements to the building. The roof is
nearly complete, and the A/C will soon be put in. There will be a ribbon Cutting for the State Line Liquor
sometime this month. Tabitha Fletcher will open her salon, X7 Esthetics soon where the Chamber office
used to reside.

The next meeting will be 6:00pm Tuesday, September 5 at the Logansport library.

Photo credit: Nicole Tull

The Young Brave

On December 12, 1923, Byron, an electrician, and Tillie, a schoolteacher, welcomed a young Indian brave to the world. The young brave spent most of his youth in the town of Mission on the Rosebud Indian reservation in South Dakota. He and the others on this particular reservation were members of what the federal government called the Rosebud Sioux Tribe. The elders called it Sicangu. His father was one-quarter Sioux. His mother had no known Native American blood. Like his parents, the young brave spoke fluent English, but little to no native tongue. One day, the young brave was walking in Mission when he saw an Indian sitting on a bench. “He had long hair, wore a blanket, and could not speak English.” Most of the people he saw on the reservation were Americanized, although he pointed out that his friends in school included Alex Raincounter and Chris Yellow Robe, boys with Indian names.

In 1938, the 15-year-old brave met who would become his high school sweetheart, Dorothy Jo, not on the reservation as his parents had met, but at an Ella Fitzgerald concert. The young brave was surprised to learn that his sweetheart was three-eighths Cherokee Indian. In decades past, their love for each other would have caused controversy between the tribes. The different tribes would have forbidden them to be together as it was in the teenage tragedy song “Running Bear,” made famous by Johnny Preston in 1959 (one of the two singers on the recording who provided the “uga-uga” and other Indian war cries was the not-yet famous George Jones). In the song, Running Bear, a young Indian brave, was in love with an Indian maid named Little White Dove. Their tribes were separated by hatred as well as a mighty, raging river. The song ends with the Running Bear and Little White Dove swimming out to be together. After a passionate kiss, the two drowned in the swift current. “Now they’ll always be together in their happy hunting ground.” By the 1940s, the Sioux and Cherokee tribes were no longer at war, and on January 12, 1945, the young brave and Dorothy Jo married with the blessing of their families.

The young brave was always proud of his Indian heritage. He once said, “I’ve always bragged about being part Indian, because they are a people to be proud of. And the Sioux were the greatest warriors of them all. They’ve been called the greatest light cavalry in the history of man.” He quipped, “And I have never been on a horse without falling off.”

We know very little about the young brave’s life on the reservation because he rarely spoke about it. We may know little about his early life, but we all know the young brave. Last Wednesday, August 26, the young brave breathed his last. He was just three-and-a-half months shy of reaching his 100th birthday. From 1972 to 2007, we welcome him into our homes. He was the host of the longest-running daytime game show in North American television history, The Price is Right. You and I know that young brave from Rosebud Reservation. His name was Robert William “Bob” Barker.


1.      Argus-Leader (Sioux Falls, South Dakota), March 25, 1962, p.17.
2.     “Bob Barker, Iconic Host of “the Price Is Right”, Dies.” Time, 26 Aug. 2023, Accessed 25 Aug. 2023.
3.     “Legacy Robert ‘Bob’ Barker – SD Hall of Fame Programs.” n.d. Accessed August 27, 2023.

Northwestern State University’s N-Side View Day set for September 30, 2023

Northwestern State University’s Office of University Recruiting will hold its annual Fall N Side View Day on Saturday, Sept. 30 beginning at 8 a.m.

NSide View Day offers a behind-the-scenes glance into college and university life. Parents and students will discover student organizations, learn about academic programs, get information
on the admissions process and receive helpful tips from faculty and current students.

During the event, prospective students and parents can tour campus facilities and get information on financial aid, living on campus, housing, meal plans, campus involvement and amenities,
such as the Wellness, Recreation and Activities Center and the Esports Lounge.

“The best way to learn what Northwestern State offers its students is to visit the campus and city of Natchitoches in person and meet with the people who ensure our students are successful,” said Director of Enrollment Services Van Erickson. “It is a pleasure to welcome prospective students and their parents to NSU. We know they will find N Side View to be a valuable experience.”

Current Northwestern State students agree that attending N Side View Day can be helpful for those who are considering attending NSU.

“It was an awesome experience to get to meet fellow students and co-workers at N Side View Day and to get a sneak peek at what life at NSU is like,” said Carter Causey,
a freshman business administration major from Leesville.

Qualified students can take Accuplacer Exams through NSU Credit Connection that could lead to them receiving college credit. Students can take the Accuplacer exam for $25 for placement
in English and math classes, as well as take Credit Connection placement exams for free for credit in English 1010 and 1020; Math 1020 and 1060; Science 1010, Fine Arts 1040 and Spanish 1010.

A student reception will be held on Friday, Sept. 29 at the Arnold J. Kilpatrick President’s Residence. Those attending can meet NSU President Dr. Marcus Jones along with key faculty
and staff. A link to sign up for the reception is at

Those attending NSide View Day can also visit the 17th Annual Natchitoches Car Show on Front Street where more than 400 classic cars will be on display. Admission is free. Tickets will also be available for the Eastern Illinois – Northwestern State football game which kicks off at 6 p.m. in Turpin Stadium.

Those wishing to participate in N Side View Day can sign up at NSU.LA/NsideView

United Way opens donations for families affected by recent fires

United Way of Northwest Louisiana (UWNWLA) is encouraging monetary donations to its United for NWLA Disaster Relief Fund to support families that have been evacuated from their homes and have experienced household damage due to unforeseen fires. Dollars raised from this fund will provide relief to the families affected within UWNWLA’s ten-parish region (Bienville, Bossier, Caddo, Claiborne, DeSoto, Natchitoches, Red River, Sabine, Webster, and Winn).

The purpose of the United for NWLA Disaster Relief fund is to provide immediate assistance to victims of recent natural disasters, such as tornadoes, fires, hurricanes, etc. Anytime a natural disaster is declared, UWNWLA reactivates the fund to support our community’s most urgent needs.

“From Sabine to Shreveport, we’ve seen multiple fires occur, forcing our community’s families to evacuate and leave behind necessities, memories, and more,” said LaToria W. Thomas, UWNWLA President & CEO. “For families already struggling to make ends meet, the loss of a home pushes these families deeper into financial insecurity. Our goal for this fund is to help those with nowhere left to turn and begin rebuilding our communities.”

UWNWLA, urges individuals who have been displaced and are seeking resources for damage assessment, shelter, food insecurity, and more, to call its health and human service hotline, 211.

To donate to the United for NWLA Fund, please visit 

Ware Youth Center is hiring

Ware Youth Center is seeking female and male staff to work directly with juveniles in both secure and non-secure settings. Applicants must have a high school diploma or GED, no criminal history, a valid Louisiana Driver’s License, and a strong desire to help improve the quality of life for the youth served at WYC. Benefits include state retirement, health insurance, vacation leave, sick leave and several holidays.

Applicants should apply at Ware Youth Center, 3635 Hwy 71 in Coushatta. Ware Youth Center is an equal opportunity employer.


By Doug De Graffenried

There are days when I think I drive for a living. I commute from Gibsland to Ruston daily. There are days I do a couple of round trips.  I drive a bland white Toyota hybrid. I established long ago that my car is smarter than I am. It certainly takes care of me. 

The cruise control has two settings, politically correct and drive up on their bumper before changing lanes. I opt for the bumper drive setting. That setting keeps me at optimum driving attention.

There is another feature I’ve come to appreciate. The rearview mirror is not a mirror but a camera. It gives a wider field of vision. My vision is not blocked if I’m hauling something in the back of the car. It took a day or two to get used to the idea, but now I don’t think I could return to the old-fashioned rear-view mirror.

The car has warning lights galore. It reminds me to check the backseat before I exit the car to make sure there is not a child or perishable food sitting on the seat. I have learned that if any item over 40 pounds is in the back seat, it must be belted in. To fail in that safety requirement means the warning horn will blare the whole trip. It is nice for my car to warn me that I have a sack of bird seed on the backseat.

The warning light I have learned to loathe is the tire pressure light. The tire pressure light is always on. This morning it was on because all four tires claimed to have pressure problems. They were all at 34 psi, and I thought that was pretty good. I know that in the wintertime the pressure will fluctuate. I was not anticipating this issue in the dog days of August. Is my car overly sensitive? Do I have a bad sensor or two in the tires? Can I learn to ignore the warnings? After all I come from a time when we would get out of the car, look at the tire and then manually check the tire pressure.

What is the relationship between the driver and the warning lights? Especially if these warning lights were created by some dufus who thought it was a good idea to know your tire pressure all the time. I know what you are saying, ignore the warning lights at your own peril. I agree. However, I’m being warned about a non-problem. I don’t have a tire pressure problem; my car has a calibration issue.

That perpetual light on my dashboard is a spiritual reminder. There are a ton of things to worry, fret, and stew about. Some of these worries are life altering. Others are like the light on my dashboard, a mere distraction. Maturity brings the wisdom to differentiate between the two.

For large and small distractions, Jesus is the antidote.

“Do not let your hearts be troubled, believe in God believe also in me.”

Big News for Vernon Parish

We at Journal Services, LLC are pleased to welcome our newest publication, Vernon Parish Journal. This online publication joins 12 others across Louisiana. Join us in welcoming Rick & Mary Lou Barnickel, publishers of the new Vernon Parish Journal.

“We feel the people of Vernon Parish – Leesville, New Llano, Anacoco, North Fort Johnson and South Fort
Johnson, and surrounding towns – deserve their own publication,” said Bill Vance. “At Journal Services LLC, we pride ourselves in covering local parishes with high-quality news and advertising to keep our readers up to date on what’s happening in their communities.”

All Journals cover local news, features, and sports. Subscriptions are – and always will be – free. Please visit and sign up today – CLICK HERE.

Click to visit any of our journals:

Bienville Parish Journal
Claiborne Parish Journal
DeSoto Parish Journal
Jackson Parish Journal
Lincoln Parish Journal
Natchitoches Parish Journal,
Sabine Parish Journal
Shreveport-Bossier Journal
Rapides Parish Journal
Vernon Parish Journal
Red River Parish Journal
Webster Parish Journal
Winn Parish Journal

This & That… August 30,2023

Nichol’s Hunter’s Tax Free weekend is Sept. 1 & 2. All hunting related merchandise and camo will be tax free!

Stonewall Library is going through the alphabet using stories, crafts, and snacks. Join them each Wednesday at 10AM. Call Ms. Kathy at 318.925.9191 for more information.

North DeSoto High School single game football tickets will only be sold ONLINE this year. NDHS will share more information on the purchasing process for home games in the coming weeks.

Mark your calendars…Crusin’ in Grand Cane 10th Annual Car, Truck and Tractor Show will take place Saturday, October 21 from 9am to 2 pm. For more information contact Dianne Mason, Event Chairwoman at 318.858.2556 or

Notice of Death – August 29, 2023

Betty June Angele Stadler
October 16, 1936 — August 25, 2023
Service: Wednesday, August 30 at 10am at Rose Neath Funeral Homes – Mansfield

Gary Sidney Niette
November 3, 1959 – August 26, 2023
Service: Wednesday, August 30 at 10:30am at St. Anne’s Catholic Church, 4310 LA-485, Robeline

Curtis “Curt” W. Nix
June 20, 1939 — August 22, 2023
Service: Thursday, August 31 at 2pm at Bethel Congregational Methodist Church,1316 Union Grove Church Rd, Pleasant Hill

Richard “Pete” Sepulvado
October 5, 1958 – August 26, 2023
Service: Friday, September 1 at 2:00pm at Spring Ridge Baptist Church, Pleasant Hill

Richard W. Booker, Sr.
September 22, 1939 — August 28, 2023
Service: Saturday, September 2 at 11am at Rose Neath Funeral Homes – Mansfield

Our lunch box of memories

This was the text message:

“My Lone Ranger lunchbox lunch every day for 5 years.

2 PB&J’s wrapped in tinfoil and thermos of sweet tea.

No snacks or exotic stuff from my mom.

That was it.”

Felt like getting a message in a bottle from a castaway, and knowing it was much too late to help him. “If I could have just gotten the guy some Fritos, or a Bite-Size Milky Way,” I’m thinking …

But what really got me was “lunchbox.” Had never thought about it much, but I missed the entire “lunchbox” cycle of a kid’s life. I was a ride-the-bus, eat-in-the-cafeteria kid.

Old school.

Never had a lunch box. (Except one time on Halloween when Mrs. Alice in second grade let us dress up and have a party and our parents could come for an outside picnic lunch so I packed one and my lunch box was called “a paper sack.” No idea why I’ve always remembered that. Dressed up like a pirate. Wonder if I packed fish and chips and something to keep me from getting scurvy and rickets?)

In the ignorance of rural youth, I never knew there were Lone Ranger lunch boxes, because surely I would have wanted one. Would have coveted one. A little tin box with a matching thermos, filled with peanut butter and jelly or maybe even “round steak” (bologna) on fresh white bread. What was in it wouldn’t have mattered much. I suspect the box itself was the thing.

I’ve studied and found there were Gomer Pyle lunch boxes. Gilligan’s Island. The Hulk. Happy Days. The Six Million Dollar Man. And — are you kidding me? — Superman.

Ignorance is bliss, thank goodness. I was lucky for what I didn’t know. I hope if I’d have had a lunch box that it would have been The Lone Ranger or Batman and not something stupid like The Waltons or Little House on the Prairie.

“Hey, which one of you losers belongs to this Partridge Family lunch box?!,” the kid with the Evel Knievel lunch box was wanting to know.

Sometimes I wonder what Lunch Box Life would be as a grownup.

“Hey TA, let’s go eat a gourmet burger or some enchiladas. I’m buying.”

Me: “Y’all go ahead. I’ll just eat this deviled ham and some moldy Ritz from my Wonder Woman lunch box.”

It would be all about the lunch box for me.

But things happened for me as they were supposed to, because one of the best memories of my wasted youth was the smell of a certain food baking each mid-morning at Lake View Elementary. That aroma was the portal to olfactory heaven. We’re talking — and I shouldn’t even have to write this — yeast rolls, the smell of hope and comfort and joy.

I love the smell of elementary school yeast rolls in the morning.

Mrs. Erline Perritt was the magic behind the memory. Black hair pulled back tight and under a hair net to showcase a round face always smiling. The yeast rolls she made on those giant sheet pans were things of fluffy goodness that could keep you battling through spelling class, knowing that if you could hold out a little while longer, she’d be putting a couple of those on your tray, maybe sneaking you one for dessert.

What smelled better to a little kid back then? A cheerleader’s perfume, maybe? But I doubt it.

Mrs. Erline Perritt. I didn’t need a lunch box. She was my real-life Wonder Woman.

Contact Teddy at

Pickers Contest Awards $100 Weekly

Welcome to the Marketplace Chevrolet College Football Pickers Contest. Each week the
DeSoto Journal will award $100 to the reader who does the best job of predicting the
outcome of ten college football games.

Here is the entry blank for the first weekly contest. Just CLICK HERE and complete the
form. Then hit “Submit” at the bottom and you are entered. Tell your friends or share this
article so they can enter too.

The first contest entry deadline is 4:00 pm Friday, September 1, 2023. So don’t delay. Get
your entry in today. It only takes a couple of minutes, and you could win the $100 weekly
prize. Persons entering who are not currently Journal subscribers will be given a
complimentary subscription.

CLICK HERE to enter the Marketplace Chevrolet College Football Pickers Contest. You
could win the first week’s $100 prize.

Senior Citizen Fun Day

The DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Office and the DeSoto Council on Aging will host Senior Fun Day today from 9am -12pm at the DeSoto Sheriff Training Facility. The event is open to senior citizens aged 60 and over. There will be plenty of food, door prizes, Bingo, and much more! 

To schedule a ride, you can contact the DeSoto Council on Aging Transportation Department at 318-872-2270. 

The DeSoto Sheriff Training Facility is located at 120 Sprocket Lane, Grand Cane, LA.

DeSoto Fire District 8 hiring

DeSoto Fire District 8, located at 13011 Hwy 175 Mansfield, is taking applications for full time positions. Deadline to apply is September 8. Applicants must obtain a current State Civil Service Exam score.

Full time salary begins at $33,500. Employment includes annual paid vacation days, department paid health insurance, state retirement, free training and a $7200 state supplement (paid monthly after probationary period).

Go by the station or call 318.872.2453  for more information.

Sheriff Richardson urges caution

Sheriff Jayson Richardson urges residents to be mindful of the risk the area currently faces as it pertains to Wild Fires. Many adjacent areas to the south are already facing severe conditions due to swiftly spreading fires. Although it has been nice not having to mow every 15 minutes, this drought has severely put the area at risk.

Rain is not in the forecast for quite some time. The Parish wide Burn Ban is now a State Wide Burn Ban, and there are major concerns that any small spark could spread rapidly and even become deadly. Sheriff Richardson asks that all residents work together to prevent such disasters from taking place in our communities.


By Doug De Graffenried

I met Bubba the Dragonfly on Tuesday morning. Bubba was trapped by glass. He had flown in through the architectural features that lined the hallways of the building. The architectural features around the elevators were real windows. Bubba had flown into the building and was having a hard time exiting the premises. I watched him for several minutes. I decided to act when I watched Bubba back up and fly at full speed toward the glass. Bubba was a big dragonfly, and he made an audible thud when he hit the glass.

That was enough for me. I picked Bubba up off the ledge of the window and walked him over to one of the architectural features in the building and turned him loose. Bubba flew away triumphantly.

I had several thoughts, watching Bubba fly.

I wondered if Bubba knew that church aphorism, “When God closes a door, he opens a window.” No, he doesn’t! There are times that God says, “No.” We are the guilty parties by continually testing the doorknob. Very often, we are the mistaken parties thinking this opened window is God’s doing. There are times the door is closed, and the window has impenetrable glass to cause you to stop and change directions. We call that repentance which simply means, “to turn around.” Bubba reminded me that in my own life, I need some repentance going on.  I’m responsible for that. There are places I need to change direction!

The other thing I thought about as I watched Bubba fly away was that what we all need is a savior. We are banging our heads against walls that we can never penetrate. We shouldn’t be banging our heads according to the paragraph above. But we are habitual in our habits. They might not benefit us, but we are so used to doing the same thing and we keep at it. A savior intervenes. 

A savior not only shows us a new and better way but will put us on the path to that new and better way. For our part, we are called to have faith in this savior. 

While I was watching Bubba fly free, I offered a prayer of thanksgiving to Christ my Lord. He set me free from the power of sin. He opened a new way of being and living. He called me into this crazy thing called “the ministry.” 

Before Jesus I was trapped. Since Jesus, I have been set free to experience abundant life in Christ.

The Apostle Paul put it this way, “For freedom Christ has set us free.”

Ware Youth Center is hiring

Ware Youth Center is seeking female and male staff to work directly with juveniles in both secure and non-secure settings. Applicants must have a high school diploma or GED, no criminal history, a valid Louisiana Driver’s License, and a strong desire to help improve the quality of life for the youth served at WYC. Benefits include state retirement, health insurance, vacation leave, sick leave and several holidays.

Applicants should apply at Ware Youth Center, 3635 Hwy 71 in Coushatta. Ware Youth Center is an equal opportunity employer.

UPDATE: Red Flag Warning

A Red Flag Warning means that extreme fire weather conditions are either occurring now, or will shortly. A combination of strong winds, low relative humidity, and dry vegetation can contribute to extreme fire behavior. Avoid all outside burning and welding today. Do not toss lit cigarette butts outside. Report wild fires to the nearest fire department or law enforcement office.

Say “Yes” phone scam

An old phone scam is reported to be making a comeback. The Say “Yes” scam, also known as the “Can you hear me” scam first appeared in 2017. It was so prevalent back then that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a warning to consumers at that time. In recent months, it has resurfaced.

Consumers should be wary of answering calls from numbers they do not know. The goal of the scam is to record the person called saying “yes” during the conversation then use the recording to authorize unwanted charges to credit cards or bank accounts.

How the scam works: the consumer answers the phone, and the caller may say they are with a credit card company, a utility company or even a bank. The caller asks “Can you hear me?” and records the victim answering yes. The recording then can be turned into a voice signature that can be used to place unauthorized charges by phone.

The FCC gave the following tips in 2017 to help ward off unwanted calls and scams. They still hold true today:
• Don’t answer calls from unknown numbers – This is the most obvious and simplest precaution. Let unknown calls go to voicemail.
• If you answer and the caller (often a recording) asks you to hit a button to stop receiving calls, just hang up. Scammers often use these tricks to identify and target live respondents.
• If you receive a scam call, write down the number and file a complaint with the FCC so it can help identify and take appropriate action to help consumers targeted by illegal callers.
• Ask your phone service provider if it offers a robocall blocking service. If not, encourage your provider to offer one. You can also visit the FCC’s website for information and resources on available robocall blocking tools to help reduce unwanted calls.
• Consider registering all of your phone numbers on the National Do Not Call Registry.