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Local News Archives for 2016-03

Arrest Made in Bomb Threat at Marysville Honda Plant

An Arrest has been made after a bomb threat sent home first shift associates at the Honda plant in Marysville Wednesday morning.
Jeffery Martinez
According to a release from the Union County Sheriff's office, Jeffery Martinez, age 30 of Bellefontaine, was arrested on Thursday afternoon on the Marysville Honda Plant Campus for allegedly writing the threats on a bathroom wall. Martinez is reported to be a contractor at NEX transport. Honda evacuated the plant around 11:30 AM on Wednesday for the safety of the associates.
Bomb squads with bomb sniffing dogs from several police and sheriff departments were on the scene and after an initial investigation including an extensive search and sweep of certain areas of the plant, no suspicious devices were found. Marysville Auto Plant production was resumed at 6:30 PM Wednesday evening.
Martinez is charged with one count of inducing panic, a felony of the third degree, and will be arraigned Friday at 8:00 AM. Due to the serious nature of the threat, a criminal investigation is ongoing and additional charges are pending.


US 30 Blocked by Overturned Semi

A stretch of U.S. 30 east of State Route 235 near Ada was blocked for most of the night due to an overturned semi.


According to information from the Findlay Post of the Ohio State Patrol, the driver of the semi, who's name is not available, drove off the left side of the road and over-corrected causing the semi to overturn.


Both lanes of 30 were closed to allow for the removal of contents from the trailer and clear the wreckage.


The driver was not injured.


The road was reopened around 5:30 this morning.



Honda Plant in Marysville Shuts Down First Shift Due to Threats

The Honda plant in Marysville sent first shift employees home and evacuated the premises due to some sort of threat.


Honda officials released a statement that reads:


Earlier today, Honda security learned of a potential threat to associate safety at our Marysville Auto Plant. As a precaution, we have made the decision to evacuate and dismiss associates beginning at 11:30 am.


The safety and security of all associates is a top priority so Honda moved quickly to assure safety.


Honda has notified law enforcement officials and they are on-site and fully investigating. At this time no additional information can be shared.


No decision has been made yet about second shift operations.


The release stated that their associates are aware of our production notification system.


Two Injured in Car/Train Collision This Morning

Two people were injured after their minivan was struck by a train east of Ada this morning.


According to information from Sheriff Keith Everhart, the Dodge minivan was being operated north on Township Road 55 by Mikala Rostofer, and the driver failed to stop for a westbound Norfolk Southern train. Rostofer was taken by helicopter to an undisclosed hospital. A passenger in the van, Katrina-Davis Rostofer, was transported by Ada EMS squad. Sheriff Everhart said their injuries were non life-threatening.


No other information is available at this time as the crash remains under investigation.


Two Cars Damaged But No Injuries in Tuesday Afternoon Crash

There were no injuries in a two vehicle crash that occurred Tuesday afternoon.


According to the Hardin County Sheriff's Office report, 17 year old Nathan Price, of Ada, was cited for failure to yield after he drove his car from County Road 65 onto State Route 309, where it was struck by an eastbound vehicle being driven by 30 year old Jaimee Frey, of Kenton.


Moderate damage occurred to the vehicles.


Ohio Department of Education Seeking Comments

COLUMBUS-State Representative Robert Sprague (R-Findlay) today announced that he is encouraging constituents of the 83rd Ohio House District, particularly parents, to provide feedback to the Ohio Department of Education on Ohio's current learning



The Ohio Department of Education (ODE) recently announced a plan to review the standards and update them, if proven necessary. Before undergoing the review process, however, ODE is asking parents to review the English language arts and math standards by visiting www.ohio-k12.help/standards in order to improve education in Ohio for all students.


As defined by ODE, learning standards outline what students need to know and be able to do at each grade level. Based on those standards, individual school districts then develop their own curriculum.


Education experts will review the feedback, from which teacher committees will propose changes. The State Board of Education will then vote on the proposed changes. The deadline for comments and input is April 5, 2016.


City Council Members Hear More About Boxing Club

The Kenton City Council met in regular fashion Monday evening in council chambers.


After roll call, the prayer, and the Pledge of Allegiance, several citizens addressed council.


Lonnie Rettig, a citizen of Lima, Ohio, addressed council with his idea to open a boxing club for troubled and angry youth in Kenton. Rettig owns South Side Spartans Gym, Inc., a 501c-3 based in Lima that serves over twenty youth in Allen county.


Rettig has been a coach for over 20 years and is looking for "the bad kids, the kids who are getting in trouble, the kids who need to get off the street, the kids who need a chance." The program serves children ages 5-24, both males and females, and teaches Olympic style boxing, discipline, and promotes self-awareness and positive life habits. Rettig is specifically looking for a building to utilize in Kenton for the program. Any citizens wishing to know more about the program or those who may know of a building can contact Rettig via Facebook or by phone at 419-234-0120.


Police Chief Dennis Musser recognized new police officer Shane Wood for his exemplary performance at the accident on North Main Street and Carrol Street earlier this month, during which a Kenton pedestrian was struck and killed by a semi. In an email received by Musser, a witness to the incident commended Officer Wood on his care, concern, and professionalism while trying to soothe and calm the various witnesses. Chief Musser commended Wood and said that he was "the right choice for the department." Musser also passed around one of the new body cameras for the police department; the cameras are panoramic and capable of continuous filming and still photography alike. Lastly, Chief Musser introduced Jennifer Brand, the newest hire for the police department. Brand joins the department from Forest, Ohio.


Judge Greg Grimslid gave an annual report for the Municipal Court for the year 2015 and introduced the new Clerk, Jenifer Alger. Judge Grimslid applauded his staff for handling nearly 4,000 cases in 2015 and processing over one million dollars in payments and fees. Judge Grimslid spoke positively about the new e-ticket program being utilized in cooperation with the Ohio State Patrol and the online payment option for court fines through the county website, www.hardincourts.com. Grimslid also mentioned that the county is looking to change their collection process, and is currently looking for a collection agency to handle that particular task.


Under Communications and Petitions, the council received minutes from the Tree Commission meeting held on March 10, 2016. According to the minutes, Micah Smith will be addressing council at a later date about residents who are removing trees without permits and Rick Smith will be attending the Tree City USA Awards on April 20. Kenton was named a Tree City USA once again.


The council also received notice from the Department of Commerce Division of Liquor Control that all alcoholic sales permits will expire on June 1, 2016. The council voted to waive the right to objection of any applications for renewal of current liquor licenses. Council President Joel Althauser also mentioned the transfer from JR Hickel and Mary Margaret Richards, doing business as Thomas Family Tavern, to Merrill Kaufman, Kim Kaufman, Matthew Bailey, and Susan Bailey, doing business as Skinnys Tavern. The council voted to waive the right to object to the transfer.


During committee reports, the council heard from:

Safety Committee - the safety committee will hereafter meet the Tuesday after the first normal council meeting of the month at 2:30pm. The next meeting is scheduled for April 12. Safety Service Director Jim Hites is going to install an additional streetlight on Hillcrest Lane within the next 60 days to strengthen lighting for the YMCA and City Pool parking lot. Per the suggestion of Hites, an officer may be checking for speeding drivers on Silver Street for the foreseeable future. Discussion has begun about possibly changing truck routes after the fatal accident earlier this month at North Main Street and Carrol, but more discussion will be necessary before a decision can be made.


BKP Board - The BKP Board approved the resignation of Michael Freidrick, effective March 31. The board is also looking into updating the server and computer system in the BKP building and switching the billing software, though no decisions have formally been made.

Finance Committee - The next meeting of the Finance Committee will be Monday, April 4, 2016 at 5:30pm in council chambers. They plan to discuss pending five year financial plans and water and sewer rates. The next written test for the fire chief will be held on Monday, April 11, 2016. The committee noted that if two or three firefighters pass the exam, the committee will need to request funds to implement an oral exam to determine the new chief.


Downtown Revitalization - There will be a meeting in April before the spring cleanup.


MOP - MOP has not met, but they will have a report analyzing the pay scale updates for city employees by April 1.


Regional Planning - Regional Planning will be meeting on the evening of April 7.


Cemetary Board - The Cemetary Board will meet next Monday, April 4.


During old business, the council read three pieces of legislation for a second time. The legislation was for garage shop supplies, appropriations that are mostly backed by checks and other revenue, and the employee handbooks and moving money to the general fund. All three pieces moved to third reading.


In new business, the council heard a piece of legislation regarding appropriations for the hiring of a new firefighter. It is estimated that the hiring of a new firefighter could potentially save $6,000 or more in overtime that would be incurred. Since the earliest date to hire the new employee would be June, the legislation moved to second reading.


After a brief pass for comments, the meeting was adjourned. The next meeting of the Kenton City Council will be Monday, April 11, 2016 at 7:00pm in council chambers.


Stolen Vehicles Investigation Leads to Arrest of 3 Kenton Teens

TnreeKenton teenagers are facing charges following an investigation into two stolen vehicles.


According to the Hardin County Sheriff's Office report, deputies were requested by the Kenton Police Department to provide assistance in recovering a vehicle that had been stolen in Kenton Monday.


It was located on State Route 235 south of State Route 309, and through an investigation, it was discovered that the suspects abandoned the vehicle after it became stuck on 235. The suspects then stole another vehicle from a residence in the 18,000 block of 309.


The two 17 year old boys and one 14 year old girl were later located and arrested. They have so far been charged with theft without consent, and the incident remains under investigation.


Layman Family Farm Damaged by Sunday Thunderstorm

A local family farm sustained heavy damage from the severe thunderstorm that rumbled through Hardin County Sunday night.




Several grain bins and wagons were damaged or destroyed on the farm of Jan Layman on County Road 119 when the storm blew through with its 50 to 60 miles an hour wind gusts.



Layman noted that he discovered the damage the next morning. He said 7 grain bins were damaged or destroyed as was a grain dryer. There was also damage to the farm shop and equipment barns.



Layman, looking on the bright side, said the repairs should be made in time to prevent a delay in spring planting in a few weeks.






All pictures were taken by, and used with the permission of, Holly Layman.


$5,000 Reward Offered for Scioto Village Fire Information


The Hardin County Sheriffs office and the Kenton Fire Department are still seeking information about the deadly Scioto Village fire that occurred on November 17th 2015.


The Ohio Blue Ribbon Arson Committee is offering a $5,000 reward and fliers are being posted near the Scioto Village apartment complex. The reward is offered to anyone who can furnish information leading to the identities of the person or persons responsible for the fire.



Click Image to See More Photos


The fire occurred during the early morning hours of November 15th and spread quickly through the Scioto Village Complex before the fire department was able to extinguish the fire. That fire injured several people and claimed the life of 30 year old Brandon Argabright who succumbed to his injuries 10 days after the incident.



Click Image to See More Photos


The Ohio Blue Ribbon Arson Committee was started in 1973 to bring together law enforcement, firefighters, and the insurance agency.


You can contact the Hardin County Sheriffs Department detective Conley at 419- 673-1268 ext 2106 or Kenton Fire Department investigator Peterson at 419-673-1235.


Click Here for the Initial Story from WKTN and see Photos from the fire.


Severe Storms Swept Through Hardin County Late Sunday Evening


A Severe Thunderstorm with straight line high winds swept through Hardin County late Sunday evening.


The storm brought high winds between 40 and 50 MPH including heavy rainfall to the area and caused tree debris to cover many roadways. The storms caused damage to the roof of the Durez Cooperation and sent a parked tractor trailer to it's side. 


Storm Roof

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Along with tree debris, a metal structure blew to a resting place on the west side of the road in the 13,000 block of US 68. 


Storm Damage

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The remains of a camper that overturned and is now completely destroyed along the same stretch of US 68.


Storm Damage

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Power was lost to businesses and some residents on the south side of Kenton for a period of time and 100 residents in the Forest area remain without power due to 7 transmission lines being down in remote areas. Power will be out to these residents for most of your Monday.


Storm Damage

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Damage also occurred to a Kenton Airport Hangar and a camper that was parked in the 13,000 block of US 68 was completely destroyed after being blown over several times.


Truck Overturned

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A tree was lifted out of the ground near Myers Addition in Kenton.


Tree Damage

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Two Vehicle Accident Saturday Afternoon on State Route 31

An accident occurred Saturday Afternoon at the intersection of State Route 31 and Township Road 265.
According to the report from the Hardin County Sheriffs office, A vehicle operated by Christina Reebel age 40 of Richwood was traveling Southbound on State Route 31 and was attempting to turn left onto Township Road 265 when a vehicle operated by Richard Karcher age 78 of Forest, who was stopped on Township Road 265, made an attempt at turning left and struck the side of Reebel's vehicle. Minor damage occurred to both vehicles and no injuries were reported.
Karcher was cited for failure to yield.


Annual Beef Banquet Held

The 2016 Beef Ambassador Cassidy Deckling.
Marcia Hoovler, the Vice President of the Hardin County Cattle Producers, opened the event and thanked all of those in attendance for attending. She then introduced the 2016 beef ambassador, Cassidy Deckling. Deckling explains that having an ambassador instead of a queen, creates more opportunity for youth.
"It gives you a wider range like guys can be ambassadors also. They wanted to give more opnions for different people and you can have three ambassadors and that gives you a wider range." Said Deckling.
She shares what she hopes to accomplish as the 2016 beef ambassador.
"We want to do more things to get the youth more involved. People that are in 4-H or are coming in to FFA because the beef industry is growing and we need more people to participate and we're thinking of having more events at the fair to get kids interested." Explained Deckling.
Scholarship Winners: Molly Wilson, Nicole Sutherland, Ross Thompson, Tyler Skidmore, and Clay Gerfen. Not Pictured is Cecily Preston.
Paige Guenther then introduced the winners of the Cattle Producer's Scholarship. They were,Tyler Skidmore, Ross Thompson, Clay Gerfen, Nicole Sutherland, Molly Wilson, and Cecily Preston.
The Snider Family, Derek, DeDe, Dave, and Demi Snider
Dave and DeDe Snider were then awarded the Cattle Producers' service award for their years of service to the cattle producers as directors, and for their many years operating the steak barn at the fair.
Retiring Director Tony Good was also recognized for his service to the cattle producers.
Frank Phelps of the State Cattlemen's Association gave an update on the state wide events that are planned as well as a recap of the recent beef expo. Darlene Wagner of the Ohio Cattle Women's Association also gave a report on her organization. 
From Left to Right: Lane Underwood, Ross Thompson, Caleb DeLong, and Garrett Royer
Director Holli Underwood recognized Ross Thompson, the exhibitor of the Champion Market Steer, Lane Underwood, the reserve champion exhibitor, Caleb DeLong, The exhibitor of the Champion steer that was Born and raised in Hardin County, and Garrett Royer who was the reserve champion exhibitor. They were each awarded a belt buckle as a token of congratulations from the Cattle Producers.
Olivia Whiting, Smantha Lowe, Bryan Searson, Samantha Unger, and Clay Gerfen were recognized as the winners of the Rate of Gain contest at the fair this past year.


Kenton and Dunkirk Easter Egg Hunt - Huge Success (Photos)

Easter weekend in Hardin County brings the annual Easter Egg Hunt to Kenton and Dunkirk.
Easter Egg Hunt 2016
The 2016 Egg Hunt in Kenton sponsored by the Hardin County Optimist Club got kicked off in Egg-citing fashion on a sunny Saturday afternoon. The temperature at the start of the action was in the lower 50's, the eager crowd was out in light jackets and carrying soon to be heavy baskets. The youngest kids got to start right at 1PM and their little legs swarmed the egg cover grass lawn around the courthouse to gather their candy filled delights. The next groups were released by increasing age until the final group of 10 year olds got to spring to action to gather their colorful and sweet treats. All that remained after the kids engulfed the lawn was the usual green grass around the beautiful Historic Downtown Kenton Courthouse.  
Thumbs up to Easter Hunt
An attempt to get an interview with Easter Bunny was unsuccessful because he had to hop up to Dunkirk Community Park. So I hopped into my vehicle and followed the bunny all the way to the Dunkirk CIC and Community Business sponsored Egg Hunt.
I arrived to a magnificent view of  multi-colored grass covered in egg shaped gems. The youngsters were anxiously awaiting 2 PM to get started roaming the vast fields to gather their own little delights. Once again the youngest group got to go first and were off to the races over some mumbling and grumblings of the older kids. Much to the relief of the older children, and possibly the adults,  the next groups where release in increasing order by age. Cheers and laughter could be heard over the unmistakable sound of little mouths chomping down on their favorite candy.
After the egg rush the kids and parents waited to hear their names to see if they had won one of many incredibly cool prizes. The sly Easter Bunny hopped away during the action heading off to the next egg hunt and this reporter was unable to catch up this time around.
Dunkirk Easter Bucket Full


Multiple Easter Egg Hunt's Scheduled for Easter Weekend in Hardin County


The annual Easter Egg Hunt's are scheduled for Saturday and Sunday around Hardin County.


Kenton Easter Egg Hunt


In Kenton the Hardin County Optimist Easter Egg Hunt was held in downtown Kenton, around the courthouse, and started at 1:00 PM this Saturday Afternoon. This event was for ages 0 to 10 years old.


Click Here To Read Story and See the Kenton Photos




In the Dunkirk area the Dunkirk CIC and Community Business sponsored Easter Egg Hunt started at 2:00 PM. This event was for kids age 0 to 10 years old. Kids under 2 could receive their eggs from the Easter Bunny. Lots of candy and prizes was given away.


Click Here to Read Story and See More Dunkirk Photos


On Sunday the Kenton Full Gospel Church will hold an Easter Egg Hunt on Sunday following the service which starts at 10:30 AM. Baskets provided and all ages are welcome to attend. Gift certificates will be given away and everyone is welcome to attend.


Happy Easter from 95.3 WKTN!


Two Accidents on Friday Along Same Street Only Hours Apart

Kenton Police Department and Ohio State Patrol responded to two accidents Friday along the same stretch of East Columbus street, within a few hours of each other, and under the same circumstances.
The first incident occurred around 11:30 AM at the exit of 1005 E Columbus St. and involved two vehicles. According to the report from the Ohio State Patrol, Charles Bayes of Forest attempted to exit the Kmart parking lot onto East Columbus Street and failed to yield to a car operated by Hershel Howell of Kenton traveling on Columbus Street. Damage occurred to both vehicles and a passenger, Lee Elaine Howell of Kenton, was transported to Hardin Memorial Hospital with possible injuries.
67 accident
The second incident occurred around 2:15 PM at the exit of 1241 East Columbus Street and involved two vehicles with multiple injuries. The Kenton Police Department report states that a vehicle operated by Hanah Stansbery of Forest attempted to exit the Wal-mart parking lot onto East Columbus Street and failed to yield and the vehicle struck the passenger side of a Westbound vehicle operated by Heather Eatherton of Forest. 5 people where transported to Hardin Memorial Hospital with possible injuries.


Two Vehicle Injury Accident on US 30 Leaves Family Trapped

A two vehicle multiple injury crash occurred Friday evening on US 30 leaving a family trapped after the accident.
Injury Accident
According to a release from the Ohio State Highway Patrol, a vehicle driven by Patti Lauck, age 60 of Mount Blanchard, was driving northbound on County Road 183 and stopped at the intersection of US 30. Lauck traveled across the eastbound lanes of US 30 safely but failed to yield to westbound traffic. Lauck struck a vehicle being operated by Cynthia Eakin, age 28 of Findlay. Eakin's vehicle was struck on the left side and overturned leaving both Eakin and her husband Randy trapped inside the vehicle along with two children. They were extracted from the vehicle using mechanical means.
US 30 Accident
Mrs. Eakin and one trapped child were flown by Life Flight to Saint Vincent Medical Center in Toledo with life threatening injuries. Mr. Eakin and and the other trapped child were transported to Blanchard Valley Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. A third child, who was not trapped inside the vehicle, was transported with minor injuries.
The crash remains under investigation.


Several Items Reported Stolen From a Vehicle Thursday Morning


Several Items Reported Stolen From a Vehicle in Kenton on Thursday Morning.


According to the report from the Kenton Police Department the theft occurred between Wednesday night and Thursday morning in the 600 block of South Detroit Street in Kenton. Lisa Peyton of Kenton reported the theft of several items from a vehicle including a camo purse with pink trim containing a  phone case, insurance card, food card, and $200 in cash.









5 Juveniles Roaming Streets at 2:04 AM in Kenton

5 juveniles were found to be roaming the streets at 2:04 AM Thursday morning.
A Kenton Police Department Officer was on patrol in the area of West Ohio Street near South Market Street on Thursday around 2:00 AM when he observed a group of 5 people who appeared to be under the age of 18. Upon making contact with the subjects it was determined that the oldest member of the group was only 14 years old and the least cooperative and most disrespectful of the group. The other 4 where identified as being either 12 or 13 years old. 
The 5 juveniles where transported to the Kenton Police Department and the Hardin County Sheriff's office assisted in notifying the parent or guardian to pick up their child or children.
All juveniles were cited for Unruly Juvenile Offenses and a copy of the report is being sent to the Hardin County Juvenile Prosecutor office for review.


Two Vehicles Reported Stolen Thursday Morning in Kenton

Two vehicles were reported stolen to the Kenton Police Department Thursday morning.
Auto Theft
The first incident was reported at 7:00 AM Thursday in the 200 block of Letson Ave. A Dark Blue 1997 Toyota Corolla owned by Allen Lease of Kenton was left unlocked and was stolen sometime through the night.
The second incident was reported at 9:00 Am Thursday in the 600 block of North Main Street. A black 2015 Acura ILX owned by 23 year old Alysha Coulson of Hilliard Ohio was stolen sometime through the night. Coulson told the Kenton Police Department that she failed to take the key fob that is used to start the vehicle out of her vehicle and she also failed to lock her vehicle.
The investigation is pending at this time.


Kenton Man Sentenced on Charges Including Involuntary Manslaughter

A Kenton man was sentenced on charges including involuntary manslaughter. 
According to documents from Prosecutor Brad Bailey's office:
.Vernon P. Reed Junior, was sentenced to total of four years and nine months in prison on one count each of involuntary manslaughter and tampering with evidence. Reed, who was serving five years community control after being sentenced in April of 2015 on a charge of trafficking in heroin, was indicted on the involuntary manslaughter charge in December of 15. The indictment stated that Reed, "did cause the death of another or the unlawful termination of another's pregnancy as a proximate result of the offender's committing or attempting to commit a felony, to-wit, corrupting another with drugs and/or trafficking in heroin." He pleaded guilty to the involuntary manslaughter and tampering with evidence charge earlier this month.
Also in Court recently, Justin E. Caldwell was placed on five years community control with conditions on one count of attempted tampering with evidence. 
Both cases were heard by Judge Scott Barrett. 


Colon Cancer Awareness Month with Dr. Schirmer on At Issue

The month of March is Colon Cancer Awareness Month.
Dr. Timothy Schirmer, who sees patients in the Specialty Center at Hardin Memorial Hospital, said colon cancer does not have to be deadly, "Colon cancer prevention can be done through colonoscopies and the like, by removing the polyps before they can have a chance to turn into cancer, so I think that's a big difference between many other types of screening programs is that we can actually prevent the cancer."
For the complete discussion, tune in At Issue tomorrow morning at 7:35 on WKTN.


Severe Weather Awareness Week Good Time to Prepare

Whether it's wind, rain, thunder and even sometimes, snow - Ohio is known for its volatile spring weather.


And during "Severe Weather Awareness Week," Ohioans are being encouraged to be prepared. On Tuesday, counties throughout the state, including Hardin, held simultaneous tornado drills at 9:50 a.m. Gary Garnet with the National Weather Service in Cleveland says the test is a good reminder for schools, businesses and families to have emergency plans in place should dangerous weather strike, "We change from cold to warm very fast; severe weather can oftentimes come up very quick, with little or sometimes no warning. So, people need to think about severe weather action plans, particularly if they're commonly in outdoor places."


During a tornado drill or an actual tornado, he says people should get as low to the ground as possible - get under something, cover their heads and keep shelter until the storm has passed.


Garnet adds another crucial piece of preparedness is understanding the difference between a "watch" and "warning." A watch means conditions are favorable for severe weather; a warning indicates severe weather is already occurring or will be soon.


Ohio experiences more than a dozen tornadoes every year, and just last week a small twister caused damage near Dayton. But Garnet says other types of severe weather also are dangerous, "Damaging winds out of thunderstorms, winds that get 50,60,70 miles an hour, they knock over trees, power lines, do minor damage to structures. But we also get flash flooding, which is very common, and a lot of people drive into flooded waters."


(UPDATE-VICTIMS IDENTIFIED) Two Young Girls Killed in Fire Near Waynesfield

Two young girls were killed in a fire that occurred this morning at a house near Waynesfield this morning.


According to a release from Wayne Township Fire and EMS Chief Albert Presnell, two children, identified as 7 year old Keelin Doty and 10 year old Trinity Lhamon, died in the blaze.


House Fire Waynesfield Ohio


The fire in the 18,000 block of County Road 196, was reported by a neighbor around 6:45 this morning. The house was fully engulfed in fire upon arrival of emergency personnel.


All attempts to rescue the victims were unsuccessful, and the two children were found inside later.


The Ohio State Fire Marshall's Office was dispatched to investigate the fire, along with the Wayne Township Fire Department, Auglaize County Coroner's Office and detectives from the Auglaize County Sheriff's Office.


No other details are being released at this time as the fire remains under investigation.


Wind Advisory Issued for Thursday Morning Through Evening

A Wind Advisory for Hardin County will be in effect Thursday morning starting at 9AM until 6 PM in the evening.
Wind Advisory
The National Weather Service issued a Wind Advisory due to wind 20 to 30 MPH with gust up to around 50 MPH. Winds will increase Thursday morning and continue into the evening. Scattered tree and power line damage is possible along with some minor property damage in the highest gusts. High winds can make driving difficult especially for higher profile vehicles.
A wind Advisory is issued when sustained winds are forcasted to be 31 to 39 MPH or gusts will range from 46 and 57 MPH. 
Stay tuned to 95.3 WKTN on the radio and on the web at www.WKTN.com for the latest updates


WKTN Tower Re-Lamped

Work was done Wednesday afternoon to re-lamp the WKTN tower on State Route 309 just east of Kenton.



Joe Armey, from Armey Satellite in Fort Wayne, Indiana, is doing the work wearing an RF suit to protect him from RF radiation from the antenna.



Armey is replacing 4 side markers and 2 600 watt beacons at the top of the 270 foot tower,








ODA Seeking Nominations For Conservation Awards

REYNOLDSBURG, Ohio (Mar. 22, 2016) - The Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) is accepting nominations to honor Ohio farm families who are leaders in conservation for the 2016 Conservation Farm Family Awards.


"Many Ohio farmers are committed to conservation, and we want to honor them for efforts they have made to protect Ohio's natural resources," said ODA Director David T. Daniels. "With these awards, ODA is able to recognize farmers who have taken extra steps toward protecting the land using conservation practices they have implemented on their own farms."


The Conservation Farm Family Award program has recognized Ohio farm families since 1984 for their efforts in managing natural and human resources while meeting both production and conservation goals. Individual farmers, partnerships or family farm corporations are eligible for nomination, provided a substantial portion of their income is derived from farming. The judging is based on the nominee's use of new and traditional conservation techniques, comprehensive management, individual initiative in applying conservation measures and the nominee's willingness to share conservation information, experiences and philosophy with others.


Five area finalists will be selected from across the state and will be recognized at the annual Farm Science Review in September. They will also receive a $400 award, courtesy of the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, and be featured in the September issue of Ohio Farmer Magazine.


Nomination forms can be obtained from local county soil and water conservation districts or by visiting ODA's website at www.agri.ohio.gov. The forms can be submitted by email to dswcagri.ohio.gov or by mail to Ohio Farmer Magazine, C/O Ohio Department of Agriculture 8995 E. Main St., Reynoldsburg, Ohio 43608. The forms must be returned by Friday, May 20.


The awards program is sponsored by the ODA Division of Soil and Water Conservation, Ohio Farmer magazine, Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, Hancor Inc., Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts and the United States Department of Agriculture's Natural Resources Conservation Service.


School Repairs and Basketball Program Issues Discussed at School Board Meeting

The Kenton City School Board met in regular fashion Monday evening at the Board Office. The meeting began with a presentation from Kenton Middle School Teachers Traci Jones and Amy Long who had a presentation on the Kenton Middle School Upstanders. Students Ryenne Caudil, Tawshia Keen, Chelsie Clark, and Eden Cronley spoke about their experience with the Upstanders.


Here is Audio about the Outstanders:


Jennifer Penzarski talked about the changes for the 2016-2017 school calendar year. Penzarski wanted to note that the school start of day for Kenton High School would change to 8:10 am to 3:00 pm and that the Kenton Elementary times would be from 8:00 am to 2:45 pm. The change to times would allow for a single round of bus's to pick up the kids from their schools. The bus routes will be reworked to be more efficient and decrease cost for providing transportation.


The total hours of instruction for the 2016-17 school year will be reduced from the previous year. The K-6 instructional hours will be reduced by 61.75 hours and the KMS and KHS by 17.5 hours and Penzarski talked further about the difference in the schools total hours is due to the elimination of the two-hour delays for professional development and eliminating downtime for busing. The professional development days will now be full days and have been strategically selected to be around holidays. Penzarski reminded the board that every hour will now count against the total hours if a weather delay or cancelation occurs due to the new calendar structure.


The teachers are being presented with two possible calendar options and will be able to vote on the school beginning and end dates. One calendar would have the school starting date be on August 22nd but will not include time off for the Hardin County Fair while the other would have school starting on August 18th and take the week off for the fair. The School Board will take final action on the 2016-17 school calendar at the April 18th board meeting.


During the public participation portion of the meeting Rodney Hensel talked about the basketball program and mistreatment of the players by the basketball coaching staff. Hensel is a 1976 Kenton High School graduate who talked about his experience as a basketball player in past compared to today. Hensel told the board “I usually don't get involved in this sort of things, but I feel that somebody needs to stand up for what I and many other feels is a disservice to our student athletes and the boys basketball program.” Hensel continues “I'm not going to bring up how bad of a record we have, I could almost live with that, if it wasn't for some of the actions by our coaching staff.” Hensel was joined by several other student athletes and parents to voice their concerns to the board. The main thing Hensel thinks the students have learned from the basketball program is that “If you don't have a good leader at the top you are set to fail.”


Basketball Mistreatment Concerns with audio from Rodney Hensel:


In committee reports the finance committee talked about the painting of Mcintosh that used to hang in the Kenton High School library has been refinished and is ready to be placed in it;s new home at the Kenton Elementary School. The Facilities Committee discussed the serious safety and liability issues in connection with the Kenton Middle School gymnasium roof and chimney plus the condition of the entire school roof and highly recommended that the board approve the resolution to repair the damage with a total cost of around $97,000. The Extracurricular Committee read the names to recognize the students accomplishments in Winter Sports. Here is a complete list:


Boys Bowling: Dylan King Honorable Mention


Girls Bowling: Shelby Pfeifer Honorable Mention


Boys Basketball: Hunter Phillips Honorable Mention


Girls Basketball:

Ashley Morris 1 st Team, Ellie Miller 3 rd Team, Layne Taylor Honorable Mention


Wrestling District Qualifiers:

C.J Cook, Tobias Mendoza, Dustin Edler, Riley Fitsgerald, Noah Eikenberry 2nd State 176Lbs.



Mo Gray Lima Area Swimmer of the Year and placed 5 th at state 100m Breaststroke


Swim District Qualifiers:

Mo Gray, Ashton Cole, Jenna Sherman, Mary Lautar, Morgan Kohl, Elaina Shaub, Sarah Thomas, Mason Bloom


State Power Lifting Champions: Kenton 5 years in a row.


The resolution passed to repair the Kenton Middle School Gymnasium Roof and Chimney for the approximate $97,000. The board also approved the creation of several positions for special education. Kenton had partnered with Auglaize County for special education classes when the student numbers where lower but now that the classes are made up almost entirely of Kenton students the creation of these new positions makes more sense and cost possible cost savings of approximately $50,000 depending on contract negotiations. The board approved the creation of the following positions:


6 – 5.75 Hour Educational Assistant Positions

2 – 8 Hour Educational Assistants with bus riding duties

9 – Full Time Certified Teaching Positions


The next regular meeting for the Board of Education will be held on April 18th, 2016 at 7:00PM.





Injury Accident Near Upper Sandusky on Sunday Afternoon

An injury accident involving two vehicles occurred Sunday afternoon near Upper Sandusky.
According to the report from the Wyandot County Sherriff's Office, a vehicle driven by Florence Lewis, age 87 of Tiffin, was traveling south on County Highway 121 around 3:30 PM when he attempted to cross US 23 and struck a vehicle operated by Teresa Salizzoni, age 45 of Logan, driving eastbound on US 23.
Salizzoni and a passenger in her vehicle, Tersa Salizzoni, age 45 of Logan, were both transported to Wyandot Memorial Hospital by Upper Sandusky EMS for possible injuries.
Lewis was cited for failure to control.


Structure Fire in Kenton Early on Saturday Morning

A structure fire was reported in Kenton during the early hours of Saturday morning.
According to information from the Kenton Fire Department, a report of a structure fire located at 505 W. Carrol St. came in at 2:44 am. When the fire department arrived on the scene, light smoke was coming out of the west side of the structure. After making entry the fire was located in the Kitchen and extinguished. The Kenton Fire Department was on scene until 4:11 AM and was assisted by Kenton Police Department, Hardin County Sheriff's office and BKP. American Red Cross volunteers also assisted at the scene. 
The fire remains under investigation.


(UPDATE) Accident on St Rt 309 East of Kenton Saturday Evening

Two vehicles were heavily damaged in a crash that occurred Saturday evening on State Route 309 just east of Kenton.


Accident 309


According to the Hardin County Sheriff's Office report, 73 year old Larry Adams, of Dola, pulled from the driveway of Christian Missionary Alliance Church onto 309 stating he didn't see a westbound car being operated by 54 year old Richard Flowers, of Kenton.


The collision spun Adams' vehicle into the concrete pillar at the entry to Grove Cemetery.


There were no injuries, and so far, the only charges that have been filed were against Flowers for driving under the influence.


Wapakoneta Community Mourns the Death of a Local Teen

WAPAKONETA, OH - According to a Facebook post by Petersburg Parishes, LeeAnn Jose died peacefully Saturday morning at 6:47 in the University of Toledo Hospital.
“LeeAnn's family thanks the Wapakoneta community for praying for her and them, Please continue your prayers."
LeeAnn was a junior at Wapakoneta City Schools and they released a statement on Facebook.
“Our hearts are filled with sorrow this morning as we have learned of the passing of LeeAnn Jose. There are not adequate words to express how much we will miss LeeAnn. LeeAnn was a beautiful soul, a cherished friend and a talented student. She will remain in our hearts in treasured memories. We ask that you keep her family in your prayers as they mourn her loss. We also ask that you keep her friends, classmates, our students and our staff in your thoughts.”


Retirement Party Held For Kenton Fire Chief

A retirement party for Kenton Fire Chief Russ Blue was held Friday.


His last day was yesterday, and numerous people dropped by the fire station to wish him well.


Looking back on his over 41 year career, the Chief said perhaps the worst fire he was ever called to as a firefighter was the Spanky's's fire in 1980, "That was a large loss of life we had, and there was nothing we could have done. Everybody was gone, they perished before we were ever on scene, but we gave it our best shot. We did everything we could, and it didn't;t change anything, and it's still an unsolved fire. It was ruled as undetermined, and that's probably the way it will always stay. I wish there was a way we could have solved that one, and we might in our own minds, we probably have solved it, but we would never be able to solve it in court, so it's just going to pass."


On this his first day of retirement, what will the chief do if he hears a large fire now?, "Oh I'll probably go watch." In all serious though he said, "It will be different, it really will. It'll be hard not to want to go in, but you know I'd probably still would show up just to help the guys with anything they need, just be there for their support."


The Easter Bunny Arrives at Kroger Today

The Easter Bunny arrives at the Kroger store this (Saturday) morning at 11am sharp in a limo from Ohio Limo of Bellefontaine.







WKTN's Dennis Beverly will be along once again this year for the ride.


Parents take your camera to have a picture taken of your child as the Easter Bunny will visit with the kids until 2 Saturday afternoon. There will also be special activities taking place for the kids as well.


The Easter Bunny's appearance is made possible by Ohio Limo of Bellefontaine, Kenton's Kroger store and WKTN


(UPDATE) Three Vehicle Crash With Injuries on SR 67 Friday Evening

Three vehicles were heavily damaged in a crash that occurred late Friday afternoon on East Columbus Street.


Accident 67


According to the Kenton Police Department report, 75 year old Ray Marshall, of Forest, was driving a pickup truck east on Columbus Street, and he failed to stop in time to avoid colliding with a car that was stopped for a red light in front of the Walmart store. That car, which was driven by 17 year old Araina Miller, of Kenton, was then pushed into a third vehicle being operated by 49 year old Sarah Zickafoose, of Kenton.


A passenger in Miller's vehicle, 18 year old Ciera Navas, of Kenton, was transported to Hardin Memorial Hospital.

The crash remains under investigation.






Three Sentenced Recently in Common Pleas Court

Three people were sentenced recently in Hardin County Common Pleas Court.


According to documents from Prosecutor Brad Bailey's Office:


.Rodrick D. Stevens was sentenced to a total of 4 years and 5 months in prison on one count each of illegal assembly or possession of chemicals for the manufacture of drugs in the vicinity of a juvenile and improper handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle.


.Nathan C. Spaulding was sentenced to 15 months in prison on one count of domestic violence with a specific finding that the defendant had been previously convicted of domestic violence.


.Chad E. Goodin was placed on five years community control with conditions on one count of possession of heroin.


All cases were heard by Judge Scott Barrett.


New Alliance Board Chairman Talks About His Duties on At Issue

The new Chairman of the Board for the Hardin County Chamber and Business Alliance is looking forward to his new duties.


Brian Sprang said he started on the board as Vice-Chair in March of 2015, "I served under Tim Street, and got to know the organization, and got see both sides, the full board meetings that we have every other month, and then in the other months of the year, we have the executive board meetings, so as chairman of the board of the Chamber and Business Alliance, I am responsible for running the executive meetings as well as running the board meetings."


For the complete discussion, tune in At Issue, tomorrow morning at 7:35 on WKTN.


Zanesfield Driver Injured in Crash

A Zanesfield teenager was injured in a one vehicle crash that occurred on State Route 235 in Roundhead Township Wednesday afternoon.


According to the Hardin County Sheriff's Office report, 18 year old Hayley Phillips was driving north on 235 and she travelled off the left side of the road. The car went into the ditch where it struck a culvert, fence row and utility pole before rolling over and coming to rest on its driver's side. Phillips was able to escape the car, and a passerby notified authorities.


The car was heavily damaged, and Phillips was transported to Lima Memorial Hospital by Roundhead EMS.


Tree Town Festival Committee Seeking Nominations

The 2016 Tree Town Festival Committee is requesting suggestions from Forest residents for the Parade Grand Marshall and Community Spirit Awards.


Picture from 2015 Tree Town Festival Parade


The event, which is sponsored by Jackson Forest Emergency Medical Services and the Forest Fire Department, will be held July 8, 9 and 10 in Gormley Park.


Suggestions can be made by email to tree town festival at hotmail dot com or call 419-273-2520 and leave a message. You can also visit the Village of Forest website and click on the "contact us" link.


Suggestions should be submitted by April 17.


Acura Brings NSX Specialty Car Production to Marysville

MARYSVILLE, Ohio (AP) - The next generation of Acura's top-of-the-line NSX is ready to begin full production in Ohio in late April.


It's the first time in the showcase car's 27-year history that it will be made outside of Japan.


Honda Motor Co. plans to make 800 per year in Ohio for global shipment.


Engineering project leader Clement D'Souza said Acura seeks to tap the U.S. market and distinguish itself from European competitors like Lamborghini and Ferrari.


He said the craftsmanship and technology in the 2017 NSX will "be a huge boost not only to the Acura brand, but also to the Honda brand global-wide."


The 2017 NSX starts at $156,000. It features a 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V-6 engine with 573 horsepower that is hand-built in Anna, Ohio. It's an all-wheel-drive hybrid, with three electric motors that assist in acceleration and handling.


Vast Majority Against Closing Juvenile Prisons For Rehab Facilities

By a nearly 2 to 1 margin, Visitor Poll voters are against closing Ohio's three juvenile prisons and replacing them with rehabilitation facilities.


Of those responding to the question, 62% said no they are not in favor of closing the juvenile prisons. The remaining 38% were in favor of the move. 


Click here to view story






Columbus Man Killed in Crash Tuesday Afternoon on S.R. 117

A Columbus man was killed in a two vehicle crash that occurred Tuesday afternoon on State Route 117 in Roundhead Township.


According to a release from Hardin County Sheriff Keith Everhart, 38 year old Omar Ali was driving south on 117 and attempted to pass two vehicles including a semi tractor trailer unit.

While in the northbound lane, his vehicle was involved in a head-on collision with a car being operated by 23 year old Jordan Gayfield, of Virginia.


Ali was pronounced dead at the scene. A passenger in his car, Abdukadir Osman, of Columbus, and Gayfield were both taken by helicopter to undisclosed hospitals in critical condition.


The crash remains under investigation.


Ohio Super Tuesday Results and Several Money Issues For Hardin County.

After 648 hours to vote by mail and 211 hours to vote in person the Ohio Election Primary has came and gone. Hardin county has 17,596 registered voters and in last nights election 6,998 ballots were cast which is 39% of the total voters in our county.
On the ballot were several local money issues along with the presidential candidate primary and US Senator and Representative primary.
On the local front, a tax levy for Blanchard Township and Buck Township failed to pass in Tuesday nights election. The Blanchard Tax levy for purposes of current expenses failed with 230 voters against and 161 for the levy. Buck Township Tax Levy for maintaining and operating Wolf Creek Cemetery also failed to garner enough votes to pass with 214 voting against while 148 voted in favor of the levy. The only tax levy to pass was the Jackson-Forest Township Levy for purposes of providing emergency ambulance services with 344 voters in favor while 140 voted against the levy.
In the contested race for US Senator Republican Rob Portman defeated Don Elijah Eckhart with 3,971 votes to 791. On the Democratic side of the US senator race Ted Strikland was the winner with 998 votes to P.G Sittenfields 211 and Kelli Prather's 185 votes. Republican Robert Sprague was vying to be the candidate for Republican Representative for District 83 and succeed with 3,192 votes to his competitor Kevin Rettig's 1,151 votes.
The results for the presidential race in Hardin county mirrored the final results for the entire state of Ohio. Democrat Hillary Clinton gathered 771 voters while Bernie Sanders collected 669 votes. The republican side decided to vote for Ohio's current Governor John Kasich by providing him with 2,265 votes in comparison to his opponents, Donald Trump picked up 1,953 and Ted Cruz got 917 votes. With this result John Kasich receives the entire 66 delegates for the State of Ohio and Hilary Clinton receives 75 delegates for the convention.
There where a number of uncontested candidates in Hardin County here is a full list of the results.
Rep U.S. Representative REP    
Bob Latta   4231 100.00%
Rep Chief Justice of the Supreme Court 1/1/17 REP    
Maureen O'Connor   4122 100.00%
Rep Justice of the Supreme Court 1/1/17 REP    
Pat Fischer   2131 50.14%
Colleen Mary O'Toole   2119 49.86%
Rep Justice of the Supreme Court 1/2/17 REP    
Pat DeWine   3997 100.00%
Rep Judge 3rd Dist Court Appeals 2/9 REP    
Amy Ikerd   983 25.19%
Richard Henry Palau   365 9.35%
William R. Zimmerman   2554 65.45%
Rep Judge 3rd Dist Court Appeals 2/11 REP    
Stephen R. Shaw   3652 100.00%
Rep Member of State Central Committee, Man REP    
Ryan P. Hite   3681 100.00%
Rep Member of State Central Committee, Woman REP    
Cheryl Blakely   1552 41.12%
Cheryl Buckland   2222 58.88%
Rep Judge of Common Pleas REP    
Scott N. Barrett   4178 100.00%
Rep County Commissioner 1/2 REP    
Randall S. Rogers   4084 100.00%
Rep County Commissioner 1/3 REP    
Robert D. Carder   2394 100.00%
Rep Prosecuting Attorney REP    
Bradford William Bai   4048 100.00%
Rep Clerk of Court of Common Pleas REP    
Carrie L. Haudenschi   4052 100.00%
Rep Sheriff REP    
Keith A. Everhart   4527 100.00%
Rep County Recorder REP    
Brenda J. Rainsburg   4153 100.00%
Rep County Treasurer REP    
Denise K. Althauser   4266 100.00%
Rep County Engineer REP    
Michael L. Smith   4147 100.00%
Rep Coroner REP    
Lawrence J. Kuk, Jr.   4205 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Kenton 1 REP    
James C. Finch   170 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Kenton 2 REP    
John W. Moore   347 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Kenton 3 REP    
Bill Bostelman   204 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Dunk/Blan REP    
Christine Lawrence   213 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Buck REP    
Carrie L. Haudenschi   127 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Cessna REP    
Gerald Potter   89 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Dudley REP    
Nathan Andrew Brooks   153 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Goshen REP    
Robert W. Wood   136 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member MV/RY Hale REP    
Edward Elliott   107 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member For/Jax REP    
David Book   302 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Ada North REP    
Peter A. Previte   191 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Ada South REP    
Robert C. Simmons   246 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Liberty REP    
Robert D. Hubbell   375 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Lynn REP    
Thomas Wilcox Jr.   132 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Alg/McG/Mar REP    
Charles Van Dyne   307 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member McDonald REP    
Robert Radway, Jr.   157 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Pleasant REP    
Ron B. Rogers   344 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Roundhead REP    
Eugene Royer   134 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Taylor Creek REP    
Sharon Sams   111 100.00%
Rep Central Comm. Member Washington REP    
Michael D. Dilts   158 100.00%
Dem U.S. Representative DEM    
James Neu, Jr.   1011 100.00%
Dem Justice of the Supreme Court 1/1/17 DEM    
John P. O'Donnell   980 100.00%
Dem Justice of the Supreme Court 1/2/17 DEM    
Cynthia Rice   1000 100.00%
Dem Judge 3rd Dist Court of Appeals 2/9 DEM    
Randall L. Basinger   989 100.00%
Dem State Representative Dist 83 DEM    
Mary E. Harshfield   1009 100.00%
Dem County Commissioner 1/2 DEM    
Joseph A. Hord   1089 100.00%
Dem Central Comm. Member Kenton 1 DEM    
Joseph A. Hord   60 100.00%
Dem Central Comm. Member Kenton 2 DEM    
Wes Broseke   102 100.00%
Dem Central Comm. Member Kenton 3 DEM    
Stephanie McCullough   75 100.00%
Dem Central Comm. Member Kenton 4 DEM    
Russell H. Frost   39 100.00%
Dem Central Comm. Member Dunk/Blan DEM    
Russell W. Ludwig   69 100.00%
Dem Central Comm. Member Buck DEM    
Shirley Robson   23 100.00%
Dem Central Comm. Member Cessna DEM    
Madelyn Lowery   27 100.00%
Dem Central Comm. Member Goshen DEM    
Daryl G. Flowers   20 100.00%
Dem Central Comm. Member For/Jax DEM    
Rebecca L. Snider   81 100.00%
Dem Central Comm. Member Ada North DEM    
Donald L. Traxler   100 100.00%
Dem Central Comm. Member Ada South DEM    
Robert Michael Hubbe  



Election Night Results for Ohio Primary March 2016

Local Results


Local and Money Issues


Blanchard Township

For The Levy 161

Against The Levy 230


Buck Township

For The Levy 148

Against The Levy 214


Jackson/Forest Township

For The Levy 344

Against The Levy 140


Republican Representative District 83

Robert Cole Sprague 3192

Kevin Rettig 1151


Statewide Races Results


Republican President AT LARGE

John Kasich 2265

Donald Trump 1953

Ted Cruz 917

Marco Rubio 107


Democrat President Candidate

Hillary Clinton 771

Bernie Sanders 669

Roque “Rocky” 25


Republican US Senator Candidate

Rob Portman 3971

Don Elijah Eckhart 791


Democrat US Senator Candidate

Ted Strickland 998

P.G. Sittenfeld 211

Kelli Prather 185



High Wind Advisory Issued for Wednesday Morning Through Evening

A Wind Advisory for Hardin County and surrounding areas will be in effect Wednesday morning starting at 8AM until 8 PM in the evening.
Wind Advisory
The National Weather Service issued a Wind Advisory due to wind 20 to 30 MPH with gust up to around 50 MPH. Winds will increase Wednesday afternoon and continue into the evening. Scattered tree and power line damage is possible along with some minor property damage in the highest gusts. High winds can make driving difficult especially for higher profile vehicles.
A wind Advisory is issued when sustained winds are forcasted to be 31 to 39 MPH or gusts will range from 46 and 57 MPH. 
Stay tuned to 95.3 WKTN on the radio and on the web at www.WKTN.com for the latest updates


21 Precincts Open Around Hardin County For Primary Election Day

Today is Primary Election Day, and the polls opened) at 6:30 this morning.


As far as local races, there are only uncontested candidates on the ballot today.


As for money issues, there are three township issues. One is in Blanchard Township for current expenses. Buck Township for maintaining and operating Wolf Creek Cemetery and Jackson-Forest Ambulance District for the purposes of providing ambulance service and emergency medical service.


Of course in the presidential race, Hardin County Republican voters will decide between Donald Trump, Gov. John Kasich, Senator Ted Cruz and Senator Marco Rubio. Democratic voters will choose between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders.


21 precincts will be open today. One change is for Pleasant Township voters who will now vote in the Arts and Crafts Building at the Hardin County Fairgrounds. They used to vote at the Abundant Life Assembly of God Church, but Board of Elections Director Sandy Bookmyer said the move will save approximately $200 per year.


The polls close at 7:30 tonight, and election coverage can be heard starting at 8 on WKTN.


Kenton City Council Supports Warriors First Project

The Kenton City Council is moving forward on proposing legislation to cooperate with the Warriors First project at Saulisberry Park.


At the regular council meeting Monday evening, Reverend Scott Johnson presented an update on the plans for the park as a camping and retreat center for veterans and a nature path for all. Johnson explained that state legislation is pending that would extend city water and sewer resources to the site, as well as a petition for state funding that would provide for the creation of a new reception and administration building at the entrance of the park.


After describing the progress on the project, Johnson proposed a collaboration between City of Kenton resources and the Warriors First group that would allow Warriors First to utilize a potential donation of the grindings from street projects in Kenton to pave a path on the island at Saulisberry Park. The proposed trail is tentatively called "The Bryan Beaman Memorial Nature Trail" in memory of the late Beaman. David Beazley moved for the creation of legislation that would create such a cooperative effort, and the motion was seconded by Patti Risner. Council will be reviewing the legislation after its creation.


Johnson said, "We want the trail to be accessible to all people. Where can you go to see our national bird, the Bald Eagle, in nature? It's time we rally around this hidden treasure, this diamond in the rough in our own community."


In other council news, all members spoke their sincere appreciation and best wishes to retiring Fire Chief, Russ Blue. A celebration for his retirement will be Friday, March 18 from 11:00am to 4:00pm at the fire department. Council President Joel Althauser said, "It will be so different without you. You are involved in so many things, and you do each of them well."


Spring Cleanup: Dates have been set for the 2016 City of Kenton Spring Cleanup, to be held at the Hardin County Fairgrounds April 18-April 21, 8:30am to 6:00pm. The schedule is as follows:

April 18th - 1st Ward

April 19 - 2nd Ward

April 20 - 3rd Ward

April 21 - 4th Ward


The city will accept the following items:

Appliances (refrigerators and/or freezers must have freon removed), scrap metal, car batteries, wooden furniture, televisions, mattresses and box springs, carpet, wood, paneling, and siding (wood, paneling, and siding must be cut in three (3) foot sections and all nails removed.)


The city will NOT be accepting the following items:

Tires, toxic waste, brush, yard clippings, garbage, liquid waste, fluorescent light bulbs, earth, sand, brick, stone, plaster, or any other substances accumulated as a result of building or remodeling.


Any resident unable to transport to the fairgrounds may place any of the accepted items in front of their residence as close to the curb as possible with easy access to them. If a resident is unable to put the items in front of their residence, assistance is available. A release form must be signed by the resident for the assistance. Please call the city building at 419-674-4850 with any questions.


During committee reports, Teresa Styer summarized the minutes of the finance committee meeting held on Monday, March 7. The fire department requested a transfer of $25,000 in order to hire a 13th firefighter, to begin work in June 2016. It was moved later in the meeting to create legislation for council to consider for this monetary transfer (moved by David Beazley, seconded by Pegg Wren.)


The downtown revitalization committee announced the downtown cleanup will take place on April 30 from 9:00am to 12:00pm. Volunteers are needed to spruce up the downtown area. A rain date will be set in case of adverse weather.


The other committees had yet to meet.

Under new business, the council reviewed three pieces of legislation dealing with the transfer of funds for maintenance of equipment, labor relations handbooks, and supplies. All three legislative pieces were moved to second reading.


During comments, Safety Service Director Jim Hites said that the cities parks are set to open April 1. He also said that the new police cruisers, set to replace the two that were damaged in the shooting incident in February, will hopefully be ready for delivery next week.


Lieutenant Rob Lutes spoke on behalf of the police department and said that body cameras have been ordered. The department will work with the law director on policy and records retention needs, and then will be put into service. He also mentioned that the new officer had started her probationary period, and work had started on the radio tower. It was noted that both officers involved in the February shooting have been cleared, and the investigation report revealed that there were no violations of law. Mayor Randy Manns specifically mentioned that the report indicated the officers used "great restraint in the use of deadly force."


Fire Chief Russ Blue introduced the new firefighter, Brian Williams, who joins the department from Marion. The next written testing for fire chief replacement will be on April 11.

Chamber and Business Alliance President Jon Cross spoke to council about the economic development in Hardin County. He announced the newly elected Board Chairman, Brian Sprang, who was welcomed in at the annual meeting. Economic Development will host a Hardin County Education & Business Summit on Friday, March 18 from 7:45am to 9:00am at the Kenton Elks Lodge #157. Cross hopes that a career prep meeting, to be held with representatives from all the county schools, will encourage career prep in Hardin County and strengthen the workforce for further economic development. Other upcoming Chamber and Business Alliance meetings:

Alliance "Business After Hours" - Thursday, March 17, 4:30pm to 6:00pm at the OSU Extension Office in Kenton

Annual Chamber Legislative Breakfast - Friday, April 8, 8:00am to 9:30am at the Plaza Inn Family Restaurant in Mt. Victory

Cross also mentioned that the popular event "Eats on the Street" will be returning to Kenton on June 24. More details will be available about that event later this spring.

Council moved into closed session at the conclusion of the meeting to discuss property acquisition.


The next meeting of the Kenton City Council will be on Monday, March 28, 2016 at 7:00pm in Council Chambers.


Immigrant Who Accidentally Ran Over Son is Sentenced in Marysville

MARYSVILLE, Ohio (AP) - A man who accidentally ran over his 4-year-old son with a van in central Ohio has been sentenced to six months in jail, most of which he's already served.


Natividad Jesus Hernandez pleaded guilty to forgery and a misdemeanor count linked to vehicular manslaughter in January, more than two years after the December 2013 accident.


A Union County judge on Monday sentenced the 32-year-old father to 180 days in jail. He'd served 167. He also faces five years of probation.


Investigators say Hernandez is from El Salvador and used a permanent resident card with someone else's registration number. Questions about his immigration status remain unresolved.


His attorney says the heartbroken man will seek a way to stay in the United States legally.


Ohio High Court Adopts Use of Gender-Neutral Language

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - The Ohio Supreme Court is adopting the use of gender-neutral references in family court cases in place of words such as husband and wife following the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling legalizing gay marriage across the country.


The updates to the Ohio high court rules and forms take effect Tuesday.


The Ohio order also includes father, mother, parent and spouse in its description of terms expressing familial relationships.


This covers the areas of divorce, child support, guardianships, adoption, domestic relations and domestic violence.


The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling last summer declared Ohio's 2004 gay marriage ban unconstitutional, along with similar bans in 13 other states.


A Barn Fire Occurred on Saturday Afternoon (with Pictures)

A barn fire occurred Saturday afternoon.


Barn Fire

Photo Courtesy of Kelly Dickinson

According to information from the Marseilles Fire Chief Steve Dickinson, at 12:25pm the Marseilles volunteer fire department responded to a fully engulfed barn fire located at 21,694 Co. Rd. 100. Fire fighters where on the scene until 5:00 PM Saturday evening and were able to extinguish the fire.  Marseilles Fire was assisted by Forest Fire and the Hardin County Sheriff office.

No further information at this time.


Barn Fire

Photo Courtesy of Kelly Dickinson


2016 Dairy Banquet Held on Saturday Afternoon with Audio

The Hardin County Dairy Service Unit held the Annual Dairy Banquet on Saturday March 12th at the Plaza Inn Restaurant.
The 2016 Dairy Banquet began with Dairy Service Director Philip Bauer opening up the banquet with recognition of the Dairy Directors, thanking the banquet contributors, and individuals from the community who attended the event this year. 
The 2015 Dairy Princess Robin Feasel introduced the 2016 Princess candidates Meadow Rose Cromer and Mackenzie Kater. Each candidate gave a prepared speech to the banquet attendees.
Meadow Rose Cromer is a Ridgemont student and she talked about 8 things that she has learned from being a Dairy Farmer's kid. One of her lessons...
Mackenzie Kater is a student at Hardin Northern wants to inform the community about the benefits of Dairy products.
After the speeches it was announced that the 2016 Dairy Princess would be Meadow Rose Cromer. 
Dairy Princess
LEFT: Robin Feasel RIGHT: Meadow Rose Cromer
Next on the Dairy Banquet agenda was the announcement of the 2016 Dairy Scholarship winners. Scholarship Committee members Peggy Cahill and Bret Rager said that this year they had 6 applicants and the winners for the 2016 scholarships were Joy Boone and Hope Hazelton.
LEFT:Hope Hazelton RIGHT: Joy Boone
Mark Badertscher, the OSU Extension Agriculture Educator gave an update on the new legalities of applying fertilizer such as manure to fields in the winter months. Jami Dellifield, the Family Consumer Science Educator at the OSU Extension office, introduced herself to the crowd and shared her new programs.
The annual meeting of the Hardin County Dairy Service Unit will be held at the OSU Extension office in Kenton on Tuesday March 15th at 7:00 pm. 


Body of Missing Hardin County Woman Found

The body of a missing Hardin County woman was found on Saturday.



According to information from Sheriff Keith Everhart, the body of 57 year old Toni Schorr was found on her property in southwest Hardin County in an area that had been previously searched.

She was last seen on February 24, and a search was initiated.

Sheriff Everhart added that preliminary results of the investigation indicate she died from self-inflicted wounds, but could not release anymore information as the investigation continues.


Richwood Man Killed in Sunday Evening Crash

A 60 year old Richwood man was killed in a crash that occurred in the 27,000 block of State Route 37 Sunday evening.



According to a release from the Union County Sheriff's Office, a car driven by Bill Ferguson ended up off the left side of the road where it struck a catch basin and a tree.

Ferguson was taken by MedFlight Helicopter to OSU Wexner Medical Center in Columbus where he later died.

The crash remains under investigation.


Ohio Gas Prices Up From Price 1 Month Ago

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Ohio's average price for regular gas going into the workweek remains lower than a year ago but has climbed from this time last month.


The price per gallon in Ohio was about $1.93 in Monday's survey from auto club AAA, the Oil Price Information Service and WEX Inc. That's up about 37 cents from a month ago, but 31 cents less than the $2.24 average at this time last year.


The national average for regular fuel was about $1.94 on Monday, up from about $1.70 a month ago and $2.44 a year ago.


Gas prices that have been lower recently due to lower crude oil prices are likely to continue to climb as the refinery maintenance season begins and as some refineries cut production in response to abundant supplies.


Pork Producers Hold Annual Pork Banquet

Doug Heilman, the president of the pork producers, opened up the event and introduced the producers director Nancy Weaver. She called on Sarah Thomas, who was the 2015 Hardin County Pork Queen. She spoke about her past year as queen.
Weaver then explained that no applications were turned in for the 2016 pork queen. Thomas agreed to fulfill the queen's duties for another year. 
"I plan to travel to different county fairs as well as attend the Hardin County Fair and I also plan to promote pork in different ways such as putting up posters, or just going and talking to the public. I also plan to participate in all of the different pork activities at the Hardin County Fair." Said Thomas. 
Heilman then announced the winners of the scholarships. They were Corey Thompson, Michael Willeke, Tyler Skidmore, Mackenzie Reel, Katie Martino, Carrie Morris, and Calynn Morris. 
Steve Searson, the Vice President of the producers, gave a report on their fair restaurant. He also presented Ashton Dye, the exhibitor of the grand champion pig that was born and raised in Hardin County, as well as Connor Scott, who was the reserve champion exhibitor, with a token of their congratulations. The pork producers sponsors this show annually at the fair. 
Mark Badertscher, the OSU Extension Agriculture Educator gave an update on the new legalities of applying fertilizer such as manure to fields in the winter months. Jami Dellifield, the Family Consumer Science Educator at the OSU Extension office, introduced herself to the crowd and shared her new programs.


State Powerlifting Meet at Kenton High School

Kenton High School hosted the 2016 Bill McClain Ohio High School State Powerlifting Meet.




Competition took place today for the lightweight, middleweight and heavyweight divisions for boys and the lightweight and heavyweight divisions for girls.




Trophies were awarded to the top six boy's teams and top three girls teams.


Next week, Division I, II and III competition will be held.


Lima Man Looking To Expand Youth Boxing Gym in Kenton

Adults who would like to get involved with a boxing gym for youth ages 6 and up are being sought.


Lonnie Rettig, who runs Southside Spartans Boxing Gym in Lima said their looking for adults who are looking to sacrifice their time to start a gym in Kenton, "It would be a partnership basically. It would be kind of an extension of the gym here in Lima, and to go into Hardin County and to set up something in Kenton and run a legitimate boxing gym to foster and help some of the adults who are in the community, raise up and be assistant coaches, help these guys get to and from events, and keep these guys busy, keep them off the street."


He said often times youth without something to do become bored, "They're looking for something. Sometimes they're angry, sometimes they're just looking to occupy themselves. They find out that they can do boxing and they can hit bags and have some fun. It reality, we as adults are helping these kids deal and cope with some of their anger issues and some of the issues that they're having in the gym. Sometimes kids don't even know why they like boxing. They just know that it offers them a lot of peace and safety in the end, and that's what we're trying to establish."


If any adult would like to get involved Rettig said, "They contact me at 419-234-0120. They can look me up on Facebook. we have a Facebook page- Southside Spartans Gym- and you can inbox me through Facebook."


Remember To Spring Ahead This Weekend

A reminder that Daylight Savings Time returns this weekend.


Remember to turn your clocks ahead one hour before going to bed Saturday night otherwise you will be late one hour for everything Sunday morning.


Daylight Savings Time returns Sunday morning at 2 when we spring ahead to 3.


Pedestrian Killed In Downtown Kenton After Being Struck by Semi-Truck

A fatal accident involving a pedestrian and a semi-truck had a corner of downton Kenton closed for several hours Thursday evening.




  1. Fatal Accident 03/11/2016
  2. Fatal Accident Road Blocked
  3. Fatal Accident Police


Around 7:45 PM Thursday evening a pedestrian was attempting to cross the street when a turning semi-truck struck her.


According to Cheif Dennis Musser,



According to the Ohio State Patrol Release, Karen Winegardner age 54 of Kenton, was walking her bicycle westbound across N. Main St. near the Carroll St. intersection in Kenton. At the same time a semi-truck operated by Daniel Figy age 51 of Wasseon, Ohio was Eastbound on Carroll St. and attempting to make a turn onto Main St., the semi alledgedly struck Winegardner who was pronunced dead at the scene.



Witnesses at the scene said Figy continued to drive South on Main St. and was later stopped by a Hardin County Sherriff Officer in the 800 Block of South Main St.


Also assisting at the scene was the Hardin County Corner's Office, Kenton Fire Department, and BKP EMS.


The intersection was closed for the investigation and opened around 1:00 AM Friday Morning. No charges have been filed at this time.


The crash remains under investigation.



Two Sentenced Recently in Common Pleas Court

Two people were sentenced recently in Hardin County Common Pleas Court.

According to the documents from Prosecutor Brad Bailey's Office, the following two individuals were each placed on five years community control with conditions:


.April D. Tillman on one count of illegal cultivation of marijuana.


.Charles E. Webb, also on one count of illegal cultivation of marijuana.


Both cases were heard by Judge Scott Barrett.


Chief Blue Talks Retirement on At Issue

A Kenton fire chief who has worked under eight mayors and seven safety service directors will be retiring next week.


The last day for Russ Blue, who became chief in 2002, will be Friday March 18, "After a career of about 41 years and eight months. It's been a great career. I'm going to miss it, but it's time. We have a lot of young guys at the department now, and I think it's time to make a change, and I want to move on and enjoy life and spend more time with my wife and my children and grandchildren and play a little golf when I get a chance."


Chief Blue said it would have been impossible for him to do his job without the support of his wife and family, and for the complete discussion, tune in At Issue, Saturday morning at 7:35 on WKTN.


Fair Board Holds Annual Consignment Sale

The twenty ninth annual consignment sale is set for Saturday at 9:00 AM. Howard Lyle, the president of the Hardin County Fair Board, explains the purpose behind the auction.


"The fair board took it over twenty nine years ago as a money making project to pay for upkeep and different things and equipment that we have to buy for the fairgrounds." said Lyle.


If you have something that you'd like tio consign, the deadline to do so is 5:00 this evening. You can bring those consingments to the fairgounds.


"We like to keep it farm macheniery type items we do have some vehicles but most of those have to be pre-approved before they are brought in and everything has to be titled. There's a collection of different items out here." explaind Lyle.


The Hardin County Junior Fairboard will also have a food stand where all of the proceeds will go back to the Junior Fair Board to help them purchase ribbons and other awards for the fair.


To see pictures of what's consinged, click here.


Female Pedestrian Struck and Killed by Semi-Truck in Kenton

A fatal accident involving an female pedestrian and a semi-truck had the corner of Main St. and Carroll St. closed in Kenton.


This story has been updated follow link below to see the latest information.


SEE THE LATEST STORY HERE: Pedestrian Killed In Downtown Kenton After Being Struck by Semi-Truck



The Kenton Police Department responded to reports of an injury accident around 7:45 pm Thursday evening involving a Semi-truck and a pedestrian.


According to reports from the scene the pedestrian with a bicycle was allegedly struck by a semi-truck turning from Carroll St. onto Main St. near the Armory in Kenton. The truck continued South after the incident and was located in the 800 block of Main St. 


The Ohio State Patrol and Kenton Police Department are investigating this incident.


Stay Tuned to 95.3 WKTN on Friday for more information.






United Way Campaign Reaches Goal

The United Way of Hardin County has reached thier goal for the 2015 campaign.



Pictured above: Dave Sturgeon, Merleen Barnes, Bonnie McBride, Madelyn Lowery, Phyllis Griffith.  Second row; Chad Guckes, Linda Garmon, Deb Rall, Nancy Wilcox, Matt Phillips, Darlene Foreman. Third row; Matt Manns, Kim Reffner, Deb Phillips, Beth McKinley & Jennifer Nelson.  Not Pictured are Sherrill Titus, Judy Ludwig, Jessica Parsley and Jay Bostelman.


The United Way Board would like to Thank everyone who donated money and time to the United Way to make our campaign a success. 


With the money coming in from Out of County we have reached our goal of $215,000.00.


Mid Ohio Energy's New Building Progressing

The new facility that will house Mid Ohio Energy Cooperative on State Route 309 across from Hardin Hills Health Center is on track towards completion.



Mid Ohio's Director of Marketing and Member Services, Tim Street, said the building has come a long way since groundbreaking in late July of last year, "They are working on the interior of the building. When weather permits, they are working on the exterior, but they're really a lot of rough ends on the electrical and plumbing on the inside, and we've got quite a few crews in there working, so at this point everything seems to be going as planned, and we look to be in there hopefully by the first of August."


He said once in the building, they will be better able to serve their members, "It's an opportunity for us to basically expand our footprint of operations. We've just outgrown the physical structure of the facility where we are here at 555 West Franklin, and having the opportunity to purchase the 16 acre site out on 309, it's just going to be a nice fit for our business model and for us, it's our committment to the community. We certainly were'nt going anywhere, but it's an opportunity for us to expand and have some extra room to breathe. We're somewhat land locked here with the three acre site we're on, and to go to a 16 acre site and have plenty of in and out access, it's just going to be a good place for us to be for our membership and our employees."


Belle Center Man Uninjured in Late Night Crash

A Belle Center man escaped injury in a one vehicle crash that occurred just before midnight last night on County Road 90 in Cessna Township.

According to the Hardin County Sheriff's Office report, 41 year old Scott Weber was driving east on 90 when he said he swerved to avoid hitting a deer. That caused him to lose control of the car, which ended up off the right side of the road where it struck a guide wire on a utility pole.

Heavy damage occurred to the vehicle.


Mt. Victory Man Injured in Pickup/Buggy Crash

One person was injured in a crash involving a pickup and horse drawn buggy that occurred this morning on State Route 31 at County Road 190.


According to information from the Hardin County Sheriff's Office, at around 6:40 this morning, the buggy operated by Daniel Lambright, of Mt. Victory, was struck by a pickup truck being driven by 34 year old Scott Snoke, of Forest. Lambright was taken to Lima Memorial Hospital by BKP. His injuries were not believed to be life threatening.


Complete details are not available at this time as the crash remains under investigation.


Familiar Face to Fill Commissioner Seat For Unexpired Term

The Hardin County Republican Executive Committee met last night to select a person to fill out the remainder of the late Ed Elliott's term as Hardin County Commissioner.


After interviewing several candidates, the committee selected Gerald Potter to serve for the remainder of the term.


Gerald Potter


After being selected Potter said it was it's a "humbling experience for people to feel as though I have the experience to step back into the postition. It's kinda interesting that the seat I took back in 2001, Mr Elliot had held before that. He had step down to run for state representative and I was elected to his seat back then."


Elliott, who passed away in January, was on the March 15 primary ballot against Robert Carder, who will now be unoppossed next week. Carder will however face no-party candidate Roger Crowe in November.


Longtime Kenton Business Owner Dies

A longtime Kenton business owner has passed away.



Paul Willard Root Jr., who was known as Butch to his friends, died yesterday at Kenton Nursing and Rehabilitation Center at the age of 89.


He was president of the Root Lumber Company, which has been family owned and operated in Kenton for over 90 years. He retired and passed the business to his son, Paul.

One of his proudest achievements was the development of the Fairway View subdivision, commonly known as the Root Addition.


A Celebration of Life for Paul Willard Root Jr. will be held at 11:30am Monday March 14 at St. John's Evangelical Church. Friends will be received from 9:30 until time of service on Monday at the church.


Schindewolf-Stout-Crates Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.


Counterfeit Currency Received By Local Business in Forest

Counterfeit $20 bills were received by a local area business in Forest.


According to a release from the Village of Forest Police Department, they received a report from a local business regarding counterfeit $20 bills being passed as legitimate currency. 


The Village of Forest Police Department asks for local area businesses to be on guard and check your cash carefully.


Look for security features and use counterfeit detection pens or machines if available. Also look at this general overview of $20 bill security measures:




Report any and all suspicious activity, call their office 419-273-2552 or 419-767-0029 or by dialing 911 in an emergency.


Annual Sheep Banquet Held

Pictured from L to R: 2015 Lamb an Wool Queen, Shaye Creamer; 2016 Lamb and Wool Queen, Claira Wilson; and 2016 Scholarship Winner, Hannah Heilman.


Peter Previte, the master of ceremonies, opened the 2016 lamb banquet asked Kenny Williams, the vice president of the sheep improvement association to introduce Adam Wagner who was last years Hardin County Fair grand champion market lamb exhibator as well as the exhibator of the 2016 market lamb that was born and raised in Hardin County. He thanked all of those in attendance for their support of the sheep industry within the county.


Gary Wilson and Roger High were introduced as the entertainment for the evening. They shared their experiences from their summer trip to Europe with other Hardin County residents that are involved in the sheep industry. They toured numerous sheep operations throughout Scotland, England, Wales, and Ireland. 


Jeff Bowers introduced Hannah Heilman who was the Sheep Improvement Association's winner of a $500 scholarship. Heilman will be attending Bowling Green State University, majoring in dietetics, in hopes of becoming a dietician.


Kristie Fay the chairwoman of the 2016 Lamb and Wool Queen Committee then introduced the 2016 Hardin County Lamb and Wool Queen which was Claira Wilson who is a sophomore at Hardin Northern High School. Wilson plans to help get younger children involved in 4-H and FFA to start showing sheep at the fair.


A silet auction was also held with the proceeds going to the Sheep Improvement Association's scholarship fund.


Hardin County Ag Society Met Saturday Night

The Hardin County Agricultural Society met Saturday, March 5th at the Hardin County Fairgrounds for their regular March Meeting.  There were 17 directors present and 6 guests present


 Howard Lyle, President, called the meeting to order.

Brian Harder, 4-H advisor from the Forest/Jackson 4-H Club spoke about having new wash racks built at no cost to the fair board.  They would be a self-standing/self-contained unit.  They would probably not be ready until the 2017 fair.  This proposal was accepted, but the plans for the unit need to be approved by the Ground’s Committee and then the project could progress. 


Last month’s minutes was approved with the correction that the .50 open class entry fee is not for livestock open class entries, just for still projects.


The Financial Reports and bills to be paid were approved.

There were no items to discuss from the Executive Committee.

Jim Bidwell spoke on behalf of the Grounds Committee.  Minutes from their Feb. 15th meeting were discussed.  Pete Fout stated his work to the arts & crafts building is now done.  He’s currently working on updating the beef rest rooms.  He has purchased the hydrant supplies for the new camping spots.  Consignment items are now ready.  Pete and Deb Fout were given the approval to do what is needed to update the caretaker’s house.  The ground’s committee report from Feb. 15th was approved.  Items to be done are painting the show arena and letting AEP hold their AEP training at the fairgrounds in May.  The next ground’s committee meeting will be on Tuesday, March 15th at 7pm.  


Craig Stump, chair of the Camping Committee, stated that they will be starting to lay out where the new camping spots are going to be and hydrant work will be started soon.

Rob Wilson, from the entertainment committee, stated an entertainer for Saturday Night of the fair has committed and when the contract is signed a press release will go out.  The board approved to have Derby Dog Productions from Madison, Ohio put on the Hardin County Demolition Derby this year.


Judi Cronley stated that all livestock updates for the fair book are needed by Friday, March 11th.  Nancy Rickenbacher brought up the idea of having all awards to be at the end of the Jr. Fair section in the fair book, not to be after each section in the book.  The board stated that would be a good idea.  The board approved to have the show arena advertising signs increase in price to $750 for 3 years, up from $500.  It was also noted, if the advertiser has a complicated wish, the price could increase for that advertiser.  Kelly Buchenroth proposed the idea of having mulch laid in the show arena and not saw dust.  He had mulch samples for everyone to see. 


Janie Seiler, representing the Rides/Concession Committee, stated 2016 fair contracts will be going out next week.

Nancy Rickenbacher, representing the JR. Fair board, stated that FCCLA would like to not having premium money for their students and prefer a check to the school for their participation in the fair.  The board approved to give each school who participates in FCCLA to receive $100.  


Craig Stump, stated the next Horse Committee will be on Monday, March 7th.  He spoke about splitting the Jr. Fair horse show into 2 days.  The board approved this idea and the Jr. Fair Horse Speed Show will be held on Tuesday of the fair.

Hour of Inspiration for Sunday of the fair was discussed by Bob McBride, with no final plans made yet.


Under old business:  It was noted all fair book changes need to be given to Judi Cronley by Friday, March 11th.  Farm machinery items for the Consignment Sale will be collected at the fairgrounds March 9th, 10th and 11th from 9am-5pm, with the Consignment Sale being on Saturday, March 12th starting at 9am.  A final count for directors attending the spring district meeting in April was done.


Under new business: Judi Cronley is starting a quarterly newsletter that will be emailed to people in the community.  If anyone wants to be on email list, please let her know.  The first newsletter of this year, will be going out this month after the Consignment Sale.  Kerry James proposed how the 2016 fair bumper sticker will look.  Kelly Buchenroth gave an update on the Fair Foundation success.  Jr. Fair exhibitors are increasing in who’s donating to the fund.  Total overall donations for 2015 were close to $15,000.  The next regular fair board meeting will be Saturday, April 2ndth at 7:30pm.


Ohio offers $30,000 grants to improve police relations

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Ohio's criminal justice services agency says local and state governments can apply for up to $30,000 in grants to improve relationships between communities and law enforcement agencies serving them.


The Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services says it's now accepting applications for the Ohio Community-Police Relations Grant Program.


Karhlton Moore, the agency's executive director, says the grants are focused on helping law enforcement and communities that want to improve, enhance or create stronger relationships.


Applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. on March 31.


The grants are available to all units of state and local government, as well as faith-based or nonprofit organizations.


Police departments that apply must be working toward certification through the Ohio Collaborative Community-Police Advisory Board.


New roles for pharmacists in battle against addictions

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A tool for helping battle Ohio's deadly addictions epidemic is adding new dimensions to the jobs of pharmacists.


A state computerized reporting system gives pharmacists quick access to patients' prescribing histories as they weigh whether to fill suspicious prescriptions.


The state Board of Pharmacy says Ohio's system helped lower by 71 percent the number of patients going from doctor to doctor in search of drugs last year.


Kroger pharmacist Sarah Burke says the system is so easy to use she runs all prescriptions for controlled substances through it.


Burke says her regular focus on customer service now includes awkward situations where she must occasionally turn demanding patients down.


The pharmacy board provides guidelines for handling such situations.


Report: JobsOhio created a record number of jobs in 2015

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Ohio's privatized economic-development agency says in its annual report that it's created a record 23,602 jobs last year.

JobsOhio also attracted $6.7 billion in corporate investment last year, increasing the agency's percentage of both jobs landed and investments made by approximately 10 percent compared to 2014.

The nonprofit says the new jobs have an annual payroll of $1.1 billion, which represents a 17 percent increase over last year's payroll creation. The Cincinnati area ranked first in jobs created by the agency.

JobsOhio reported that it also retained a total of 54,233 jobs carrying $3.1 billion in annual payroll from last year.
The agency is now in its fifth year after being established by Republican Gov. John Kasich and state lawmakers.


Barn Fire On Saturday Evening Near Ridgeway

A barn fire occured on Saturday evening near Ridgeway.
According to reports, firefighters from Richland Township where dispatched around 9:00 pm to a fully engulfed barn fire located at 20686 Co. Rd. 155 Ridgeway. 
The Barn looked to be a total loss once the flames where distinguished. Richland Township Fire Department received mutual aid from Kenton Fire Department, Ridgway Fire Department, Rush Creek Fire Department, Mt.Victory Fire Department, South East Hardin Ems, and the Hardin County Sheriffs Department.
No injuries were reported and the cause of the fire is still under investigation.


Negotiations Continue over $350M Windmill Farm in Hardin County

KENTON, Ohio (AP) - EverPower officials continue to negotiate with Logan County commissioners over the construction of a windmill farm that would stretch from Hardin to Logan counties.
The two sides are trying to reach an agreement on taxes while land for the proposed windmill farm's 105 turbines is surveyed.
Jason Dagger, manager of the $350 million Scioto Ridge Wind Farm project, says the project is expected to generate $1.8 million in annual tax revenues, with almost half going to school systems in those counties.
Hardin County, which will have 87 of the windmills, already has in place a taxation rate of $9,000 per megawatt of electricity.
Electricity generated from the windmills will be sold on the open market and is expected to power more than 50,000 homes annually.
Source: The Lima News


Longtime Kenton Doctor Dies

A doctor who practiced in Kenton for just over three decades has passed away.

Dr. William F. Binkley died Wednesday March 2 at the age of 94.

He was a doctor of general internal medicine throughout his career. He practiced in Kenton for 31 years before moving to Columbus in 1986.

Private family services for Dr. Binkley will be held.


Next President Should Pick Supreme Court Justice According to Visitor Poll

A majority of our Visitor Poll voters are in favor of the next president picking a Supreme Court justice.


When asked if the U.S. Senate should hold hearings on President Obama's nominee, 59% said no they should wait for the next president. The remaining 41% said though that the Senate should hold hearings on Obama's pick.


Vote now in this week's Visitor Poll.


Support Increasing For Replacing Juvenile Prisons With Rehab Facilities

Ohio's three juvenile prisons are among the oldest in the nation, and there is a new push to shutter them along with facilities in 28 other states.


A new national campaign calling for the closures, Youth First, released a poll Thursday showing about 77 percent of Americans favor changing the focus of the juvenile justice system from incarceration to rehabilitation.


Erin Davies with the Juvenile Justice Coalition in Ohio says prisons are not a safe, supportive environment that's needed to help troubled kids become positive, contributing members of society, "When youths go away to a facility, they may learn skills in a vacuum where they're away from their peers, their family, their environment. But community-based programs really help teach a youth skills that they need where they live."


Davies explains that Ohio has been a national leader in transitioning to safe, less expensive, more effective programs. She says there were nearly three thousand youths in locked-down facilities in 1992, compared with about one thousand today. Ohio once had more than 10 juvenile prisons and is down to three.


Da'Quon Beaver spent most of his youth in juvenile prisons in Virginia and now advocates for reform. He says anything that happens in an adult prison also occurs in youth facilities, including fights, riots and sexual abuse. Beaver says there are very few opportunities for education, "For 12 hours a day, our kids aren't doing anything. They're not learning. They're not being rehabilitated. They're sitting in a unit with no windows, watching a box TV with about four channels. But the worst of this abuse came from how far our youth are from their families."


Seventy percent of respondents in the poll supported requiring states to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in the youth justice system, and more than half favor redirecting the savings from closing youth prisons to community-based programs.


One Sentenced Recently in Common Pleas Court

A Wharton man was sentenced recently in Hardin County Common Pleas Court.

According to the document from Prosecutor Brad Bailey's Office, Jarred G. Smith was placed on five years community control with conditions on one count of vandalism. Smith was ordered to serve 80 days local incarceration and pay just over $1200 to the victims.

The case was heard by Judge Scott Barrett.


Man Uninjured in Roll Over Crash

A Kenton man escaped injury in a roll over crash that occurred around 7:30 Thursday morning on State Route 81.

According to the Hardin County Sheriff's Office report, a car driven by 20 year old Joby Mowery, drifted off the right edge of the roadway, and the driver over-corrected. The car travelled left of center before ending up off the right side of the road where it overturned in a field resulting in heavy damage.

No citations were listed on the report.


Ohio Unemployment Rate Rises to 4.9 Percent, Matches US Rate

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Officials say Ohio's unemployment rate rose again in January to match the national rate, which dropped compared with the previous month.


The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services said Friday that the state unemployment rate was 4.9 percent in January, up from the revised 4.8 percent in December.


The national rate dipped from 5 percent in December to 4.9 percent in January.


The number of unemployed workers in the state rose by 6,000 to 279,000. Ohio's nonagricultural wage and salary employment basically held steady.


Job gains were reported in sectors including education and health services, leisure and hospitality, and trade, transportation and utilities. Losses were reported in professional and business services and in government employment.


Two Groups Aim To Support Caregivers

Two organizations are teaming up to provide support to caregivers of cancer patients.


Karla Ritchey, Director of Rose Outreach, is joining up with Not By Choice Outreach to start the services, "Rose is an acronym for Reaching Others through Spiritual Encouragement, and Rose Outreach wants to help the caregivers and given them somebody that they can talk to, because when you're caring for somebody with cancer, it's hard, so we want to be able to get together and just talk."


For the complete discussion, tune in At Issue, Saturday morning at 7:35 on WKTN.


Patrol Continues Focus on Impaired Driving Arrests in 2016

(Findlay)  – As part of the Patrol’s ongoing effort to contribute to a safer Ohio, troopers are continuing their increased focus on impaired driving enforcement – and these efforts are paying off.


For the fourth year in a row, troopers removed well over 24,000 impaired drivers from Ohio roadways.

OVI-related crashes accounted for 35 percent of all fatal crashes in Ohio in 2015, a percentage that has remained steady for the past 3 years.


There were 14,227 OVI-related crashes on Ohio roadways, killing 395 and injuring 8,478. Speed was a contributing factor in 60 percent of all OVI-related crashes. Of drivers considered at-fault in OVI-related crashes, 54 percent were in their 20’s and 30’s, and 71 percent were male.


“We need motorists to commit to keeping our roads safe by planning ahead to designate a driver and insisting that everyone in the vehicle is buckled up,” said Lt. Matt Crow “You can also help fight the battle against impaired driving by actively influencing friends and family to do the same.”


Last year, state troopers from the Findlay Post, arrested 301 impaired drivers in this area.


The public is encouraged to call #677 to report impaired drivers, drug activity or stranded motorists.


United Way Board Member Leaving After Six Years

A member of the United Way of Hardin County board is leaving after six years of service.


Bonnie McBide (right) presents a certificate to Barb Winzenried


Barb Winzenried is stepping down after serving on several committees for United Way.


The organization thanked her for her service, and added that she will be missed.


Winzenried was presented a certificate of appreciation by Bonnie McBride.


Ottawa-Glandorf Uses Fourth-Quarter Surge To Top Upper Sandusky 79-67

Ottawa-Glandorf pulled away in the fourth quarter to defeat Upper Sandusky 79-67 in Division II boys basketball district semifinal action Wednesday at Ohio Northern.


The Titans (19-5) and the Rams (23-1) were tied at 56-56 with 6:41 to play in the game after a layup from Upper Sandusky's Kameron Beekman. However, Ottawa-Glandorf strung together a 15-4 run over the next four minutes to seize control of the game.


Jordan Verhoff had 27 points, 6 assists and 4 rebounds for the Titans while Kordell Stover added 18 points and 11 rebounds, Nick Weihrauch had 15 points and Zac Unterbrink scored 11 points.


Ry Adams had 27 points on 9-of-11 shooting from three-point land to lead the Rams while Beekman and Cory Miller scored 12 points apiece.


Hardin Leadership Classes Start Soon

Hardin Leadership classes for 2016 are about to begin.


Steering committee member Krane Stahler said the first class will be held Thursday March 10 and will continue the second Thursday of each month through November. Stahler adds that participants will learn a number of things, including local government, "Last year, we had two classes that we revolved around at the courthouse, and local government officials came in and talked about their roles, their day to day operations, what their job entails, whether it be auditing, whether it be zoning, whether it be treasurer or sheriff's department. Sheriff Everhart came in and talked to us, so it's all kinds of different ways that you get to see."


The deadline to register for the 2016 class is this Friday March 4, and if you would like more information, email Krane Stahler at kstahlerquestfcu.com, and Hardin Leadership can also be found on Facebook.


Upper Sandusky Takes on Ottawa-Glandorf in Basketball Action Tonight

The state-ranked Upper Sandusky Rams will take on Ottawa-Glandorf tonight in Division 2 boys basketball district semifinal action at Ohio Northern University.


It has been quite a year for the Upper Sandusky Rams. The Rams ran the table in the regular season, going 22 and 0 and winning the Northern 10 with a 16 and 0 league mark. Upper Sandusky finished second in the final Associated Press Division 2 state poll and got the second seed in the Ohio Northern district before opening postseason play with a 62 to 55 win over Wapakoneta on Friday.


The unbeaten Rams will face a stiff test tonight as they face the Ottawa-Glandorf Titans, who were seeded third in the district. The Titans, co-champions of the Western Buckeye League, have won seven of their last eight games to improve to 18 and 5 for the season.


WKTN will carry tonight's game live, with the pregame show starting at 6 p.m. The opening tip is set for 6:15 p.m. at Ohio Northern.


The winner of the game will advance to Saturday's district final to play the winner of tonight's nightcap at Ohio Northern featuring Defiance and Elida. Defiance, who shared the WBL title with Ottawa-Glandorf, is 18 and 5 and was the district's top seed while eighth-seeded Elida is 10 and 14 and needed to pull off a pair of upsets in the sectional to make it this far.


Saturday's district championship game will tip off at 2 p.m.


Woman Arrested on Outstanding Warrant

A Kenton woman was arrested following a routine traffic stop Monday evening.

According to the Kenton Police Department report, an officer on patrol observed a vehicle failing to completely stop for two stop signs and also failing to signal while making a turn.

The officer initiated the traffic stop and discovered the driver, identified as 20 year old Jayme Rowe, had an outstanding warrant through the Hardin County Sheriff's Office.

She was taken into custody without incident.


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