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Thursday, 06 August 2015 12:11

MCN Transit opens Wetumka satellite office

WETUMKA, Okla. — The Muscogee (Creek) Nation Transit Authority is expanding its services to the Wetumka area. Transit will host the grand opening of its satellite location at 11 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 10 at the MCN Southern Regional Office in Wetumka.

The MCN Transit Authority provides transportation services across the 11-county jurisdiction to citizens, Native Americans and the general public.

The new location features an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant van and bus, two drivers and a dispatcher.

“We’ve been trying to expand in that area through the transit system,” MCN Tribal Transportation Program Manager Charley LaSarge said. “We’re trying to branch out because our ridership numbers keep growing.”

Regular office hours for the satellite location will be from 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday.

The cost for a one-way trip within the Wetumka city limits is $0.50. Transit charges $7 per trip for each county line crossed.

The MCN Transit Authority completes an estimated 80,000 rides per year and possesses a fleet of 22 vehicles including buses, vans, trolley and ADA compliant vehicles.

To request MCN Transit Authority services or inquire about cost for services, contact: 918-732-7909.

Published in Okmulgee in the News

Okmulgee County schools are primed and ready for the 2015-2016 school year to begin. Details on the southern county schools, Henryetta, Wilson, and Dewar were highlighted in a previous article (here), this one will highlight Okmulgee, Beggs, Morris, and Preston.

Preston is set to begin on August 13 with a Teacher Meet and Greet on August 11 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Two new teachers have been hired in the elementary as well as a new high school science teacher.

Morris will have the kids returning on August 20 with an open house held on August 18 from 6 to 8 p.m. Beggs also begins on August 20, with their open house scheduled for August 18 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Okmulgee Public Schools will report back on August 6 with orientation for the Primary school on August 4 at 5:00 p.m.

According to the Okmulgee Primary School calendar, meet the teachers will begin for OES at 5:30 p.m. Freshman Orientation for Okmulgee High School will be held on July 30 at 5:45 p.m. at the Clell Warriner Theatre.

Manna Day will be held on August 1 at First Baptist Church in Okmulgee. Forms were available starting July 28.

On behalf of Okmulgee News Network, we wish all students a happy and productive school year.

Published in School News


Col. Cynthia Tinkham, Director of Personnel for the Oklahoma Army National Guard, was the
speaker for Tuesday's Lions Club special meeting honoring some of our local veterans. Vet-
erans from the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines were represented, and comprised veterans
from WW II, Korea, Viet Nam, and Afghanistan. Pearl Thomas sang "The Lord's Prayer" while
her daughter, Trish Kilian, performed Native American sign language--a very moving performance.

Col. Tinkham enlisted in the Oklahoma Army National Guard in 1989 when she went with a friend
to the recruiting office, and found herself enlisting, also, at the age of 25. Working through the
ranks, she was able to attend Officers' Candidate School and was commissioned a 2nd Lieuten-
ant in 1991. In 2009, she deployed with the 45th Agribusiness Development Team in Afghanistan's
Paktia Province to help farmers improve production.

In June, 2014, she received attention she wasn't seeking when she became the first woman to lead
one of the Oklahoma Army National Guard's top commands, overseeing the Oklahoma Regional
Training Institute in Oklahoma City, where troops are trained. The position is one of five "colonel-
level" commands in the Guard. The others oversee infantry, artillery, troop command, and Camp
Gruber, the guard's training facility in Braggs. None has been led by a woman until now.

Tinkham downplayed setting a gender milestone. "I think when you wear the uniform, it's not about
you; there's something bigger than you. So, to get all of this attention...has been kind of discon-
certing for me because I'm just doing my job that I love to do". Pictured with the Colonel is Lions
President Duaine Janzen presenting a 95-year-club coffee cup honorarium.
(Photo and information provided by Dean Craig with excerpts by Kyle Hinchey of The Oklahoman)

More photos from the day:


Published in Okmulgee in the News
Tuesday, 19 May 2015 14:17

A memorial mass for Bill Fritch

A memorial mass for Bill Fritch will be held at 10:00 A.M. on Wednesday, May 27, 2015 at Saint Anthony Catholic Church. Bill was born January 8, 1949, and passed away on Sunday, May 17, 2015. Arrangements have been entrusted to McClendon-Winters Funeral Home, Okmulgee.

Published in Obituaries
Tuesday, 19 May 2015 14:16

Ronald "Rock" Gahm obituary

Ronald Joe "Rock" Gahm, a longtime resident of Henryetta, passed away peacefully at home in Henryetta on Tuesday, May 19, 2015 at the age of 64. Rock was born on August 29, 1950 to Orbra Gahm, Sr. and Mildred Cavanaugh Gahm. He grew up in Henryetta, attending Henryetta Public Schools and graduating from Henryetta High School in 1968.

Rock attended college at Okmulgee Tech where he studied business. Following his education, Rock worked in Tulsa for Affiliated Foods as a shipping/receiving warehouseman. He later worked for several years at Henryetta Pallet Company as a night foreman. He spent approximately 15 years working at Anchor Glass Company where he finally retired as an inspector.

Rock loved to fish and play golf. He was a loving husband, son, and father and he will be missed by the many who know and loved him.

He is preceded in death by his wife Rita, who died in 1983; his mother and father; and a sister, Patricia Lay.

Rock is survived by his son, Justin Ross Gahm and wife Amanda of Henryetta; step-sons, Kurt Titsworth and wife Jannet of Okemah and Kevin Titsworth of Okemah; a brother, Orbra Gahm of New Orleans, LA; and a good friend, Rodney Maynard of Broken Arrow, OK; as well as numerous other extended family and many good friends.

Viewing and visitation will be held at Integrity Funeral Service on Thursday, May 21, 2015 from 10:00am until 8:00pm.

A funeral service for Rock is scheduled for Friday, May 22, 2015 at 10:00am at Integrity Funeral Service with Rev. James Page officiating. Interment will be at Westlawn Cemetery of Henryetta under the direction of Integrity Funeral Service.

Pallbearers will be Rodney Maynard, Butch Glover, Robert Lewis, Dean Green, Nip Rogers and Keith Palmer. Honorary pallbearers will be Don Gaither, Tom Henry, and Eldon Overson.

Published in Obituaries
Monday, 23 March 2015 19:59

Dick Bailey obituary

baileydickDick Bailey was born Wednesday, September 23, 1925 in Dewar to the late Charles Bailey and Barbara (Kittrell) Bailey. He passed away at his home on Monday, March 23, 2015 at the age of 89. He served his country in the Army Air Corps and later attended the University of Oklahoma. Dick married Mary Lou McCulloch on February 12, 1950 at the First Christian Church in Okmulgee. Dick was a founding member of the Okmulgee Elks Lodge # 1822 and a long time board member of the OADA. He was also a member of the Okmulgee Masonic Lodge #199. In Dick’s spare time, he would go down to the car dealership and always loved wheeling and dealing. Dick loved watching OU football, but most of all spending time with his family. He really enjoyed checking his stock and cattle. Dick was in the Oklahoma Cattleman’s Association and was a member of the Phi Kappa Psi at the University of Oklahoma.

Dick was preceded in death by his wife Mary Lou, parents, a brother K.D. Bailey, sister Mary Romine, son-in-law Max Keck and a daughter-in-law Pat Bailey.

Survivors include his children Mike Bailey of Okmulgee, Jill Keck of Okmulgee and Bill Bailey of Owasso, his grandchildren, Luke Keck and wife Angela of The Woodlands, Texas, Bart Bailey and wife Megan of Morris, Becky Birchall and husband Adam of Jenks, Cole Bailey and wife Brittany of Okmulgee and Betsy Bailey of Norman and a special niece, Riley Daily and husband Spencer of Okmulgee.

A funeral service will be held 1:00 P.M. Friday, March 27, 2015 at the First Baptist Church with Dr. Dennis Taylor officiating. Interment will follow in the Okmulgee Cemetery. Casketbearers will be Gary Moores, John Day, Kenneth Mann, Eldon Day, James Remington, Paul Brown, Corky McAdams and Bruce Mabrey. Honorary casketbearers will be Paula Ross, Chris Boyd, Jo Carlton, Millie Smith, Saundra Nunley, Tracey Durrett, Kenny Baughn, and Bob Inglish. Friends may visit the funeral home Thursday from 12:00P.M. -8:00 P.M. The family suggest memorial contributions be made to the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation and St. Jude’s children Hospital in Dick’s memory.

Published in Obituaries
Wednesday, 18 March 2015 13:31

Beggs Annual Summer Food Program

Come and join us this summer for our annual Summer Food Program. The program will run May 18 through June 25 with breakfast and lunch being served Monday through Thursday to children ages 1 – 18 years of age at no cost.

Adults may purchase a meal if they would like. An Adult breakfast is $2.25, Adult Lunch is $3.50. A bus will go through town to pick up any children interested in the program and will also take the child back to spot picked up after meal has been served.

A Keystone Food Service menu will be available on site and also posted on the school website at www.beggs.k12.ok.us. Breakfast will be served from 7:30 to 8:30 Monday through Thursday. Lunch will be served from 11:30 to 12:30 at the Elementary cafeteria site.

If you have any questions or need to know bus route contact Sandra Howell at the Child Nutrition Office at 918-267-3643 There will be no meals served Monday May 25 due to Memorial Day. Keystone Food Service Menu Coming Soon! Check Website for Menus!

Published in What's Happening?
Monday, 02 March 2015 12:50

Oklahoma has more Quakes than California

State insurance professionals are embracing a new rule aimed at helping Oklahomans make the right decision about earthquake insurance. More than 2,500 property insurance agents, customer service representatives and adjusters have completed a continuing education course on earthquake insurance.

With our state experiencing more earthquakes than California in 2014, more and more people are getting earthquake coverage. With the new education requirement, insurance professionals will learn about how earthquake policies can widely vary in the premiums, deductibles and exclusions. The course will help them pass on these details to their customers.

In 2012 Oklahoma ranked 19th in the number of earthquakes well behind Alaska as number 1 and California as number 2. That has changed dramatically over the past year.

Saturday, Feb. 21, there were 25 earthquakes registered worldwide. Of the top dozen earthquakes in magnitude, four were in Oklahoma, four in Oregon and four in Puerto Rico. Oklahoma had a fivefold surge in earthquakes last year, making it by far the most seismically active state in the Lower 48.The Sooner State was shaken by 564 quakes of magnitude 3 and larger, compared with only 100 in 2013, according to an EnergyWire analysis of federal earthquake data. California, which is twice the size of Oklahoma, had fewer than half as many quakes.

Researchers and many people in the state believe the quakes are linked to oil and gas activity, namely deep-underground disposal of drilling waste fluid.

"Who'd have ever thought we'd start having so many earthquakes out here in the middle of the country?" asked Max Hess, a county commissioner in Grant County, which had 135 quakes last year. He also thinks the quakes are related to oil and gas, which has been an economic boon for the rural county northwest of Oklahoma City.

"It's been good," Hess said of the drilling, "but it's got its drawbacks.

"But many in Oklahoma, where 1 out of every 6 jobs is linked to oil and gas, have been slow to embrace a connection, even as the pace of earthquakes has picked up and complaints have grown louder.

"I think a lot of it has to do with the drought," said fellow Grant County Commissioner Cindy Bobbitt, "with maybe the disposal mixed in.

"From 1975 to 2008, Oklahoma averaged one to three quakes of magnitude 3 or greater a year, according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Then the number began to rise. There were 20 such quakes in 2009.
“We knew business and home owners would be looking for ways to protect their property from earthquakes,” said Doak. “Our goal was to make sure consumers had access to appropriate information regarding earthquake insurance. It was apparent to us that the best way to communicate that message was directly through insurance professionals.”

Gov. Mary Fallin signed an emergency rule requiring one hour of earthquake insurance continuing education in August 2014. The requirement went into effect in January of this year.

“We are happy the insurance industry in Oklahoma is taking the opportunity to get educated on a relatively new topic for Oklahomans,” Doak said. “The information learned in this course will ensure that Oklahomans get the best possible advice from their insurance agent.”

For information on earthquake insurance contact the Oklahoma Insurance Department at 1-800-522-0071 or visit their website at www.oid.ok.gov.

Published in Statewide News
Monday, 16 February 2015 16:08

Oleta Gibbins obituary

Services for Oleta Gibbins, 79, of Morris OK will be held at 10:00 AM on Thursday, February 19, 2015 at the McClendon-Winters Funeral Home Chapel, Okmulgee with Rev. Donald Hogue Jr. officiating. Interment will follow in the Marble City Cemetery in Marble City, Oklahoma. She was born January 20, 1936 in Marble City, Oklahoma to Virgil and Ollie (Watkins) Mullen and left this life on Friday, February 13, 2015 in Tulsa after a short illness.

Oleta was a loving wife, mother, and grandmother. Family and friends were special to her and she enjoyed spending time with both. While her children were growing up she spent her time volunteering as a Cub Scout den mother, a Camp Fire Girls leader, and was active in various PTA organizations. She attended many of her children's school activities and was always quick to brag on their accomplishments, even after they reached adulthood.

On November 15, 1958 she married the love of her life, R.L. Gibbins, in Stigler, Oklahoma. Together they raised five children: Bob, of Tahlequah, OK, Denise, of Broken Arrow, OK, Kevin, of Okmulgee, OK, Leslie, of Waco, TX, and Michelle Qualls, of Coweta, OK. They have two grandsons, Jimmie and Matthew Qualls, both of Coweta, OK.

She was preceded in death by her husband, R.L. , on May 29, 2014, her parents, and three brothers, Otis, Winford, and Paul.

Those left to cherish her memory are her children and grandsons, a brother, Frank Mullen, sisters Virginia Church and Evelyn Matthews, and many cousins, nieces, nephews, and loved ones.

The family suggests that memorials be made to the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation.

Published in Obituaries

OKMULGEE, Okla. — Hundreds of students from around the state of Oklahoma will travel to the Muscogee (Creek) Nation capital to compete in the 16th Annual MCN Challenge Bowl, which is one of the largest cultural events hosted by the tribe.

The Challenge Bowl quizzes participants about Mvskoke culture, history, government and language while teaching traditional values, tribal pride and sportsmanship.

The annual event draws more than 700 students from nearly 30 schools.

"The Muscogee Nation sets a standard of excellence unlike any other type of competition. We strive to keep the standard of information at the highest level using our culture, language and government as the guidepost to teach our children. We believe that teaching these standards to our children will form the foundation for their future. We are planting the "Long Rooted Grass" within our children so that whatever comes up against them, the roots of their people will hold them fast and steady," according to the MCN Challenge Bowl Mission Statement.

Teams of four from schools, communities and tribal towns will vie for the chance to call themselves MCN Challenge Bowl champions.

Two teams compete against each other in each match. Teams are divided into high school, middle school and elementary divisions.

The Challenge Bowl is sponsored by the MCN Johnson-O'Malley Program.

The event will also announce the two winners of the Belvin Hill Memorial Scholarship.

For more information about the MCN Challenge Bowl, please visit www.muscogeenation-nsn.gov.

Published in Okmulgee in the News
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