The Van Wert County Courthouse

Sunday, Jun. 17, 2018

It was perfect weather as the Endless Summer Band entertained a large crowd in Fountain Park with a variety of  musical numbers during the second of this season’s Summer Music Series concerts sponsored by The Van Wert County Foundation. Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

POSTED: 06/16/18 at 7:19 am

VW independent/submitted information

The Van Wert Amateur Radio Club, in conjunction with other clubs in the United States, will celebrate the 75th Diamond Anniversary of ham radio.

An open house is scheduled from 2 p.m. Saturday, June 23, until 2 p.m. Sunday, June 24, at the Van Wert County Emergency Management Agency building off Lincoln Highway in Van Wert. The event is open to the public to watch amateur radio worldwide communications take place.

Amateur radio is a hobby and, by law, completely non-commercial. Individual amateur “ham” radio operators pursue the avocation for personal pleasure through their own, as well as club stations, communications with fellow ham operators globally. They practice electronics, computers, and radio and television wave behavior. Radio amateurs are thus “amateurs” in the true sense.

Amateur radio operations can be detected in designated bands throughout the radio spectrum using a variety of modulation methods, including Morse code and image modes, such as television and facsimile “fax” machines. Amateur radio use of the air waves is for personal satisfaction and for forwarding the “state of the art” of electronics and communications techniques.

Throughout the history of amateur radio, enthusiasts have made significant contributions to science, engineering, industry, and social services. Research by amateur radio operators has founded new industries, built economies, empowered nations, and saved lives in times of emergency.

Area residents interested in seeing ham radio in action are invited to the local celebration next weekend.

POSTED: 06/16/18 at 7:10 am. FILED UNDER: News

Bee Gee Realty & Auctioneers is sponsoring a Business Day at the YMCA’s Camp Clay Aqua Center on Tuesday, June 26. Because of the sponsorship, those using the Aqua Center that day will pay only a $3 admission charge. Shown with Camp Clay Director Kevin Morrison is Bee Gee owner Bob Gamble and a number of his staff members. YMCA photo

POSTED: 06/16/18 at 7:06 am. FILED UNDER: News

Submitted information

COLUMBUS — High temperatures are forecasted across Ohio this weekend and into next week, and the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) is urging people to take precautions to prevent potentially dangerous heat-related illnesses, including heat stroke and heat exhaustion.

“Heat-related illnesses pose a serious health risk for all people, but especially for the very young, the elderly, and individuals who are overweight or have chronic medical conditions,” said ODH Medical Director Clint Koenig, M.D. “These illnesses are preventable by taking precautions like drinking plenty of cool fluids and monitoring or limiting outdoor activities.”

Here are some tips to follow during periods of high temperatures and high humidity.

Be A Good Neighbor

  • Family, friends and neighbors are urged to periodically check on the elderly and those with chronic medical conditions since they are among those at highest risk for heat-related illnesses.
  • Encourage them to stay in air-conditioned environments as much as possible, and to look for an air-conditioned shelter if necessary.
  • Recommend that they take cool showers or baths to cool down.
  • Tell them to seek medical care immediately if they have symptoms of heat-related illness like muscle cramps, headaches, nausea or vomiting.

Drink Cool Fluids

  • Help your body sweat and cool down by staying well hydrated with water. Don’t wait until you are thirsty before you start drinking water.
  • Adults should drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day. Monitor your body – you may need to drink more on hot and humid days.
  • Drink from two to four cups of water every hour while working or exercising outside.
  • Avoid fluids that contain alcohol or caffeine, because they can add to dehydration and increase the effects of heat illness.


POSTED: 06/16/18 at 7:00 am. FILED UNDER: News

DAVE MOSIER/independent editor

Van Wert Health staff, physicians, board members, and business and government leaders got the chance to see the inside of the local hospital’s $12.5-million Van Wert Health North facility during a ribboncutting and tour opportunity on Thursday.

Shown is the 1.2-tesla Hitachi Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanner at the Van Wert North facility in the Towne Center shopping center. Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

Tim Jurczyk, chairman of the hospital’s Board of Trustees, put it simply:

“Van Wert North not long ago was just an idea, now it is reality,” he said, adding, “Van Wert Health North will be another jewel in the crown of Van Wert County.”

Van Wert Health President/CEO Jim Pope thanked all those who participated in the project, including staff and board members who were involved in the project from the time it was conceived nearly 1½ years ago.

“Something like this just doesn’t happen,” Pope noted, “it takes a lot of thinking and a lot of forethought.”


POSTED: 06/15/18 at 7:55 am. FILED UNDER: News

Local resident Terry Dietsch has completed another video of a local landmark, this time, Central Insurance Company and its Fire Museum (above). “The Fire Museum Tour is my best local video yet,” Dietsch said, noting that, with the tastefully manicured grounds, building architecture, and historic fire equipment on display at the Central Insurance Companies’ home office, “it was exciting to bring the yearlong project into fruition.” For this and other videos, local residents can also view this and other Dietsch videos at

POSTED: 06/15/18 at 7:36 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

The Ohio Technical Center of Vantage Career Center recently celebrated the graduation of seven students from the Police Academy.

These students participated in 10 months of a rigorous course of study that saw them attending class four nights a week and many Saturdays to complete 700 hours of training in a wide variety of Peace Officer skills.  These include Human Relations, Firearms, Driving, Investigation, Physical Conditioning, Traffic and Homeland Security among others.

Vantage Career Center Police Academy graduates include (front row, from the left) Kameran Clemons of Oakwood, Trevor Williamson of Continental, Nathan Owens of Convoy; (back row) Eijah Wortman of Convoy, Skyler Maassel of Paulding, Samuel Nickols of Paulding, Chase Kuhn of Van Wert, Police Academy Commander Bruce Showalter. Vantage photo

According to Bruce Showalter, commander of the Vantage Police Academy, this was an outstanding class, the first ever to have 100 percent passage rate on the physical conditioning portion of the curriculum on the first attempt.

Furthermore, despite the intensity of the training and the demanding schedule, three of the seven students had perfect attendance.

Kameran Clemons of Oakwood took the top academic and physical conditioning awards for the class, while Elijah Wortman of Convoy and Samuel Nickols of Paulding joined Clemons in earning a perfect attendance award.

Commander Showalter, who has served as Police Academy commander for the past 15 years, also announced his retirement from the position. Showalter was given a plaque thanking him for his service by Kit Tyler, Ohio Technical Center director, and Pete Prichard, former OTC director.

POSTED: 06/15/18 at 7:35 am. FILED UNDER: News

DAVE MOSIER/independent editor

A total of 20 people were arraigned Wednesday in Van Wert County Common Pleas Court on indictments handed down last Friday by the June session of the County Grand Jury.

Robert Arnold III, 34, of Van Wert, entered not guilty pleas to one count each of burglary, a second-degree felony, and trespass in a habitation, a felony of the fourth degree. Bond was set at $10,000 cash or commercial surety and Arnold will appear for a pretrial conference at 3 p.m. Tuesday, June 26.

Cyle Black, 32, of Van Wert, pleaded not guilty to one count each of aggravated possession of drugs and possession of heroin, both felonies of the fifth degree. He was released on a personal surety bond and will appear for a pretrial conference at 2 p.m. June 26.

Adam Blatteau, 37, of Van Wert, entered a not guilty plea to one count of telecommunications harassment, a felony of the fifth degree. He was released on a surety bond, but must have no contact with the alleged victim in the case. He will appear for a pretrial conference at 9 a.m. Friday, July 13.

Ecco Burker, 33, of Van Wert, pleaded not guilty to one count each of receiving stolen property and forgery, each a felony of the fifth degree. She was released on a surety bond and will appear for a pretrial conference at a later date.


POSTED: 06/14/18 at 6:32 am. FILED UNDER: News

The Van Wert Area Chamber of Commerce held a ribboncutting Wednesday to celebrate the opening of the Van Wert Physical Therapy-Hometown Therapy Group office at 1119 Westwood Drive. The business, which was founded by four therapists who provide a variety of physical therapy services, is open from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Shown with staff members from the business are Chamber staff and board members.Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

POSTED: 06/14/18 at 6:26 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

The United Way of Van Wert County recently revealed its final campaign total was at 104 percent, which was $20,000 over the $475,000 goal set last year. Over the past year the 2017-18 campaign committee has worked hard to involve county businesses and residents in various events and campaigns, raising funds for the 27 United Way supported agencies.

The recent “Fiesta Fun Friday” reverse raffle event, which was held at Willow Bend Country Club on May 4, was a great success and was able to bring in nearly $15,000 to help reach the goal. The $1,000 grand prize winner, Thad Lichtensteiger, graciously donated $500 back to the United Way.

“The ability to reach the goal set has been a great accomplishment,” said United Way Executive Director Vicki Smith. “We can say this is the largest campaign goal we have met in the past 10 years.

“It has been a privilege to work with an amazing board, caring community, and great individuals that give unconditionally,” Smith added.

“The campaign focus this year was increased involvement from the community, stressing that small contributions from a larger number of people can have a tremendous impact,” said United Way 2017-18 Campaign Chair Pat Crummey. “We wanted to increase community support of the United Way’s mission and develop a sense of being a “community hero” and the response was overwhelming. Thank you from myself, the campaign committee, and the Van Wert County United Way.”

For more information on giving to the United Way or volunteering, contact the United Way at 419.238.6689 or email

The United Way office has moved to 136 E. Main St. in Van Wert for those who would like to stop in. Those wanting more information can also check the United Way out on Facebook or watch for its upcoming 2018-19 campaign video.

POSTED: 06/14/18 at 6:16 am. FILED UNDER: News

Van Wert Rotary Club has chosen the 4-H Exchange Club to receive proceeds from its 29th annual Rotary Dinner and Auction. The auction program has provided nearly $800,000 to support Van Wert community organizations and activities, and all of the funds raised each year go to the selected project. This year’s dinner and auction will be held Saturday, October 20, at Willow Bend Country Club. Money raised will be used for the Holiday Lights at the Fair drive-through light show — the Exchange Club’s main fundraiser. Funds raised are used to travel to other states to experience 4-H all over the nation, with club members leaving June 10for a weeklong stay in Emmet, Idaho. For more information, contact Tisha Fast at 419.238.9441 or 4-H contacts Cindy Harting at 419.203.1413 or Jay Gamble at 419.203.2234. Shown are Exchange Club members and advisors with Rotary Club members. Rotary photo

POSTED: 06/14/18 at 6:11 am. FILED UNDER: News