Satcher is newly hired Brilliant football coach

From left are Roger Satcher, his son Asa Satcher and his wife Lea Able Satcher. Roger is a native of Stonewall, Miss., and has 37 years of coaching, teaching and administration experience.

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
BRILLIANT — Brilliant School has hired Roger Satcher as the new head football coach after the resignation of former coach Brian Gunnels.
Satcher brings decades of coaching and school administration experience. From 1995 to 2005, Satcher worked as head baseball coach, defensive coordinator, assistant principal and athletic director for Jasper City Schools.

Schools take a look at safety measures

Marion County and Winfield superintendents met with Marion County law enforcement officials at the central office in Hamilton to discuss school safety measures.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
HAMILTON — Marion County Superintendent of Education Ann West met with Marion County Sheriff Kevin Williams as well as police chiefs from every municipality in the county to discuss safety and security in schools for the future.
In attendance were West, Winfield City Schools Superintendent Randy Thomley, Williams, Bear Creek Police Chief Doug Hallman, Hamilton Police Chief Ronny Vickery, Hackleburg Police Chief Kenny Hallmark, Guin Police Chief Doug Webb and Winfield Police Chief Brett Burleson.

Lightning strikes twice at gas facility

A fire occurrs at the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company of Kinder Morgan on County Highway 56 in Shottsville Saturday night.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
SHOTTSVILLE — Both the Shottsville and Byrd fire departments were called to a major emergency situation during the stormy conditions that occurred on the night of Saturday, July 30.
Shottsville Fire Department was the first to arrive on the scene to respond to the fire located on County Highway 56 at the facility operated by the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company of Kinder Morgan.
“We just saw a big ball of fire on top of one of the buildings,” said Shottsville Fire  Chief Jeff Williams.

Horsing around in Hamilton

Children enjoy the Marion County Stampede that took place just a few months ago. Gann aims to get youth interested in horse competitions.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
HAMILTON — After the massive success of the Marion County Stampede just a few months ago, county resident Jamie Gann plans to bring more horse events on a more regular basis to the youth and other residents of Marion County.
During a regular meeting held on Monday, July 18, at the commission office in Hamilton, Gann suggested that the county lease him property located just off of Highway 43 South.

Winfield honors 8U, Cunningham

Trey Cunningham

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
WINFIELD — The Winfield City Council recognized the 8U boys Dixie Youth state champions and discussed plans to honor World Championships silver medalist Trey Cunningham during its regular meeting on Tuesday, July 19.
Players and coaches of the team stood holding a celebratory banner as the council passed a resolution recognizing them for their achievements.

Signal light may stay

Wes Spiller from ALDOT discusses the traffic signal during a recent council meeting.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
HAMILTON — Hamilton business owners Watha Williams and Darryl Crabtree voiced their concerns about the potential removal of the stop light located on First Avenue Southeast in downtown Hamilton.
In May, Hamilton Mayor Bob Page and the Hamilton City Council voted to take down the stop light on First Avenue Southeast in order to alleviate traffic that builds up on Military Street’s main intersection near the Marion County Courthouse.

Murder in the first degree

James McCracken

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
HAMILTON —Hamilton resident James Ray McCracken was arrested on suspected murder in the first degree charges this weekend on Saturday, July 23, in Hamilton.
The Hamilton Police Department, along with the Marion County Sheriff’s Department, made the arrest on the day of the incident.
McCracken, 77, born in November of 1944, is currently being held in the Marion County Jail in Hamilton on a $500,000 bond.

Miss Hamilton, outstanding teen visit Hamilton council

Pictured from left are Hamilton City Councilmen Scott Robertson and Wade Williams, Mayor Bob Page, Miss Outstanding Teen Harper Howard, Miss Hamilton Emee Baldwin and Hamilton City Councilmen Matt Sims, Ross Reed and Scott Tyra.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
HAMILTON — Miss Hamilton, Emee Baldwin, and Miss Hamilton’s Outstanding Teen, Harper Howard, attended the Hamilton City Council to speak to the mayor and council about their time in Hamilton and their goals after winning the competitions.

Marion County surviving in drought conditions

Marion County is in a minor drought condition, facing abnormally dry to moderate drought this season.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
MARION COUNTY — The heat in Alabama, while not entirely abnormal for a July in the state, may have some farmers and gardeners slightly worried about droughts in the area.
While Marion County has certainly been no dust bowl this year, a recent report by the U.S. Drought Monitor shows that Marion County is facing abnormally dry to moderate drought this summer.

SWAT trains for shooter response

Justin Cottingham eases around the corner just out of a classroom in the hallway of Winfield City High School during a SWAT training exercise.

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
WINFIELD — The Winfield City Police Department’s newly formed Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team swept the halls and cleared the classrooms of Winfield City High School on Thursday, July 7, during a training exercise.
Officers engaged in drills using unloaded weapons and trained using Simunition, blank cartridges that fire a paint marker and allow officers to safely train with real firearms without risk of severe injury.

Cunningham wins silver for Team USA

Trey Cunningham

By Luke Brantley
Staff writer
EUGENE, ORE. — Winfield native Trey Cunningham won second place and a silver medal in the men’s 110-meter hurdle at the World Championships on Sunday night, July 17.
Cunningham crossed the finish line with a time of 13.08, a few hundredths of a second behind teammate and defending world champion Grant Holloway, who finished in 13.03.

Sales tax holiday this weekend

MARION COUNTY — Alabama’s 17th annual sales tax holiday for school-related items begins at 12:01 a.m. Friday, July 15, and ends at midnight Sunday, July 17, giving individuals the opportunity to purchase certain school supplies, computers, books and clothing free of the state’s four percent sales or use tax.

Brilliant vet participates in Old Glory Relay

Leif Dickinson carries the American flag through Brilliant.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
BRILLIANT — Brilliant Veteran Leif Dickinson had the honor of participating in carrying the American flag during a major relay called the Old Glory Relay on Tuesday, July 5, in downtown Brilliant.
Dickinson, along with the Salute for Veterans program, ran 2.6 miles straight through the heart of his hometown, with the last half-mile stretching up a steep incline.

Over a thousand attend Summer Ramp

Seth Durkin stands center stage as Ramp ministry team Chosen performs.

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
HAMILTON — The Ramp in Hamilton kicked off its annual Summer Ramp event on Thursday, June 23, inviting over 1,000 young people from around the world to Hamilton to join the event.
The ministry, led by Hamilton native Karen Wheaton, holds several conferences every year, bringing young people to Hamilton to participate in Christian worship gatherings.

Schools facing effects of “Don’t Say Gay” bill

By Louis Mellini
Staff writer
MARION COUNTY — An Alabama law prohibiting transgender K-12 students from using the bathroom which aligns with their gender identity, while also prohibiting discussion of gender identity and sexual orientation, is now law and will be up for vote as a new rule for schools in the state this week.
While the law came into effect in April of this year, The Alabama Board of Education voted whether or not to implement the new law as a rule for schools in the state.