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The Van Wert County Courthouse

Sunday, May. 28, 2017

Flooding image-Kear Road trailer court 5-25-17

Although the emergency declaration of the Van Wert County Board of Commissioners has now expired, with water receding in creeks across the county, a flash flood warning was still in effect Friday night in anticipation of the rain received overnight Friday that will send more water into local creeks and other waterways. Meanwhile, County Emergency Management Director Rick McCoy noted that people who had flooding have asked if any financial assistance will be available, as many homeowners don’t have flood Insurance. “Because this was an isolated area of flooding and the state and federal threshold criteria was not met, no financial aid is available to the area,” McCoy noted. The local American Red Cross chapter continues to give out clean-up kits at no cost to those affected by calling 419.238.9977. Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

POSTED: 05/27/17 at 10:07 am

CHP donates to Salvation Army 5-2017

The employees of Community Health Professionals in Van Wert donate $1,000 to the building fund of the Salvation Army. Shown are (from the left) Salvation Army Lieutenant JB Brookman, Denise Gerdeman, Tori Heuker, and Heather Lawrence. (photo submitted)

POSTED: 05/27/17 at 9:42 am. FILED UNDER: News

Submitted information

Gasoline prices over the Memorial Day weekend are poised to be their lowest since 2005 for motorists in Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, and Illinois, while motorists in Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina, and South Carolina are on the cusp of the same feat.

For those in the Great Lakes, much of the reason for the cheapest Memorial Day in 12 years can be pinned on a smooth transition to summer gasoline, and few major refinery kinks in the area.

Average gasoline prices are down big versus the start of Memorial Day last year: 22 cents per gallon lower in Ohio, 13 cents in Indiana, 9 cents in Illinois, and 8 cents in Michigan. The change is a less stark 5 cents in Georgia and Kentucky and 2 cents in North and South Carolina.

“We thought last Memorial Day and summer was a terrific time to get out and take a road trip, but it has been a remarkable start to 2017, leading to possibly seeing the cheapest gas prices in 12 years over the Memorial Day weekend for several states — with prices in some spots lower than we started the year,” said Patrick DeHaan, GasBuddy senior petroleum analyst. “It’s absolutely astonishing and I’m sure motorists won’t complain about it.”

POSTED: 05/27/17 at 9:38 am. FILED UNDER: News

Frickers donates to Aqua Park 5-2017

Fricker’s will be sponsoring a Business Day at the Camp Clay Aqua Park this summer. Local businesses purchase the day for the Van Wert community; access includes swimming, a floating playground, zipline, paddleboats, a half-acre beach, and the 3,600-square-foot splash pad. New features include water cannons at the splash pad and a log roll to accompany the zipline and aqua toys. To learn more, the visit the YMCA website at Shown are Fricker’s representative Fred Ferguson, along with Camp Clay Director Kevin Morrison, and Fricker’s staff members Ciara Nidiffer, Victoria Klausing, Alice Bauman, and Destiny Fuller. (YMCA photo)

POSTED: 05/27/17 at 9:36 am. FILED UNDER: News

Flood image-kids playing on Burt St. 5-25-17

Van Wert County residents begin to clean up on Friday after heavy rains caused flooding in the city of Van Wert and a number of villages and rural areas in the county on Thursday. Above, kids play in high water on Burt Street, near Cable Street, while (below) a blue heron fishes in high water in a rural area of the county (click here for more flood photos). Bob Barnes/Van Wert independent

Flood image 5-25-17-Blue heron fishing

POSTED: 05/26/17 at 8:20 am. FILED UNDER: News

DAVE MOSIER/independent editor

The Van Wert County Council on Aging celebrated paying off its facility debt with a mortgage burning ceremony held Thursday morning at the Council’s Senior Center on Fox Road.

Van Wert County Council on Aging Executive Director Kevin Matthews (left) speaks while Council Board members and others listen during a mortgage burning ceremony on Thursday at the senior center. Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

Van Wert County Council on Aging Executive Director Kevin Matthews (left) speaks while Council Board members and others listen during a mortgage burning ceremony on Thursday at the senior center. photos by Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

Council on Aging Executive Director Kevin Matthews welcomed those attending, which included former director Cindy Wood and current and former staff, as well as Board members, former Van Wert mayor Don Farmer and his wife, Nancy, and a number of senior citizens.

Matthews said that the Council on Aging purchased the current Senior Center and two adjacent buildings in November 2009 after it became evident that the Council’s former facility on East Crawford Street could no longer meet the increasing needs of the local senior citizens group.


POSTED: 05/26/17 at 8:00 am. FILED UNDER: News

Parrish donation to YWCA 5-2017

The YWCA of Van Wert recently received a donation from Teresa Parrish, who was the big winner of the United Way Fiesta Friday Fun. Parrish wanted to donate her $1,000 winnings directly to one United Way agency, the YWCA. The donation will be used for upkeep and maintenance purposes on the YWCA facility. YWCA Executive Director Kimberly Laudick thanked Parrish for her continued support and generous donation. With Parrish (center) are United Way Executive Director Vicki Smith (left) and Laudick. The YWCA is a United Way and Van Wert County Foundation funded agency. (YWCA photo)

POSTED: 05/26/17 at 7:49 am. FILED UNDER: News

Submitted information

Due to the recent inclement weather, the concert by the Van Wert Area Community Concert Band scheduled for Fountain Park at 7 p.m. today has been moved to the Niswonger Performing Arts Center of Northwest Ohio.

POSTED: 05/26/17 at 7:45 am. FILED UNDER: News

DAVE MOSIER/independent editor

With Town Creek levels higher than they have been in five decades in the city of Van Wert, and the Van Wert Board of Commissioners declaring a state of emergency in the county, volunteers and organizations are stepping up to help those hit by flooding and other high-water issues.

Things were bustling Friday afternoon in Brumback Library's Children's Department as hordes of volunteers showed up to help move books, computers, and other equipment upstairs. Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

Things were bustling Friday afternoon in Brumback Library’s Children’s Department as hordes of volunteers showed up to help move books, computers, and other equipment upstairs. Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

The Van Wert Area Chamber of Commerce is offering its office at 118 N. Washington St. from 8 a.m. until at least 4:30 p.m. for those who need access to WIFI, a phone, fax, copying or office space.

The local American Red Cross chapter is also stating that anyone who needs assistance because of flooding issues should call the Van Wert office at 419.238.9977. Flood cleanup kits will also be available at the Wren Fire Department, or from the Red Cross emergency response vehicle on the scene there.

The County Health Department is also providing information on water safety, flood water cleanup, and food safety for residents and businesses dealing with high water issues (see story below).

Meanwhile, neighbors are helping neighbors, and scads of volunteers are providing assistance to sandbag and for other flood-related tasks.

A large contingent of volunteers converged on Brumback Library this afternoon to remove books, computers, and other equipment from the library’s Children’s Department in the basement and place them in the Reading Room on the ground floor.


POSTED: 05/25/17 at 6:09 pm. FILED UNDER: News

Submitted information

In the wake of flooding and other high-water issues caused by the high amounts of rain the county saw overnight Wednesday, the Van Wert County Health Department is providing the following information on water and food safety and floodwater cleanup:

Water Safety

  • Only use water from a safe source for drinking and washing or preparing food.
  • Use bottled water that has not been exposed to flood waters, if it is available.
  • Those who don’t have bottled water should boil or disinfect water to make it safe (see steps below).
  • For those have a well that has been flooded, the water should be tested and disinfected after flood waters recede. Those who suspect a well may be contaminated should contact the Van Wert County Health Department at 419.238.0808, extension 105.

VW County Health Dept. logo 3-2017Flood Water Cleanup

  • Keep children and pets out of the affected area until cleanup has been completed.
  • Wear rubber boots, rubber gloves, and goggles during cleanup of affected area.
  • Remove and discard items that cannot be washed and disinfected (such as, mattresses, carpeting, carpet padding, rugs, upholstered furniture, cosmetics, stuffed animals, baby toys, pillows, foam-rubber items, books, wall coverings, and most paper products).
  • Remove and discard drywall and insulation that has been contaminated with sewage or flood waters.
  • Thoroughly clean all hard surfaces (such as flooring, concrete, molding, wood and metal furniture, countertops, appliances, sinks, and other plumbing fixtures) with hot water and laundry or dish detergent.
  • Help the drying process by using fans, air conditioning units, and dehumidifiers.
  • After completing the cleanup, wash hands with soap and warm water. Use water that has been boiled for 1 minute (allow the water to cool before washing hands).
  • Wash all clothes worn during the cleanup in hot water and detergent. These clothes should be washed separately from uncontaminated clothes and linens.


POSTED: 05/25/17 at 6:00 pm. FILED UNDER: News


This drone photo by Van Wert County Emergency Management Director Rick McCoy shows the extent of flooding in the southwest portion of Van Wert County. According to McCoy, up to 7 inches of rain fell in portions of the county. The Paulding County EMA is also warning residents of the village of Payne and the Flatrock Creek area that the creek will be rising rapidly (click here for aerial flood photos by Steve Bailey and Randy Thompson and other photos by Scott Truxell).

POSTED: 05/25/17 at 10:25 am. FILED UNDER: News