Athens News Courier (Newspaper) - May 26, 2009, Athens, Alabama
East Limestone High Academic Achievers PAGE 5AThe News Courier
Tuesday, May 26, 2009Index
Bernice Blakely Mauvis Phillips Danny Thornton Abigail Valladares Peggy Sue Wise Sports ........................IB
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President Barack Obama avoided a racial controversy on his first Memorial Day in office by sending wreathes to separate memorials for Confederate soldiers and for blacks who fought against them during the Civil War.
Thursday, May 28
•4 p.m. - Tanner High School
• 6 p.m. - East Limestone High School
• 7 p.m. - Athens High School
• 8 p.m. - Ardmore High School
Friday, May 29
• 4 p.m. - Elkmont High School
• 6 p.m. - West Limestone High School
• 8 p.m. - Clements Hiah School
News Courier staff wins 23 Associated Press awards
The News Courier’s news staff recently won 23 awards in the Alabama Associated Press Managing Editors contest.
Winning entries include:
• Best News Features, second place, Jean Cole, “Can bloodsport be stopped,” about cockflghting; honorable mention, Karen Middleton “Eat more chicken,” about a man res
cued by cows;
• Best Lifestyles Features, second place, Karen Middleton, “Blind man mows lawn by feel;”
• Best Business News, second place, Karen Middleton, water board investigation; third place, Jean Cole, “Quarry battle isn’t over;”
• Best Education News, second place, Jean Cole, “Tanner fights rise in dropouts;” honorable mention, Jean Cole, “How badly is gym needed?”
• Best Investigative Reporting, second place, Karen Middleton, water board investi-
See Awards, page 7A
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Gamble pays off when driver decides not to pit with leaders during caution and NASCAR calls race just five laps later in rain-shortened Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte, N.C..
SPORTS, PAGE IBServing Athens and Limestone County: A Community of Tradition and Future
Night on floor of Leyte jungle haunts remainder of man s life
Editor's note: This is Part II of a two-part feature about the late Thomas Berzett who fought on Leyte in the Philippines in World War II. He returned to Athens from the war a changed man, haunted by demons that took over his life.
Second in a series
By Karen Middleton [email protected]
John Gormley of Summer Hill, Pa., met Thomas Berzett of Athens when they took Army Air Forces basic training at Keesler Field in Biloxi. They were to spend the next 40 months together.
“I never knew any of Tom’s habits before he entered the servibe,” Gormley
wrote to Tom’s sister, Patty, in 1953 when she was distressed about her brother’s alcoholism.
“While in the service he drank whenever the opportunity presented itself,” said Gormley.
Gormley’s letter was recently unearthed when relatives were cleaning out Patty’s possessions, according to Susan Sandlin of Elkmont, Tom’s niece. She thought the letter was especially fitting at a time when Tom had been referred to — although not by name—in a recent story about former sheriff Buddy Evans.
Evans’ sons, Johnny and Jerry, grew close to Tom when the sheriff’s family
See Haunts, page 7A
NEWS COURIER/KIM RYNDERS
Susan Sandlin of Elkmont reads once more a 1953 letter from a Pennsylvania man who served in World War II with her uncle, Thomas Berzett, which helps explain why he turned to alcohol after the war.
Reutimann gets first win in rain
City will refinance bonds for upgrades to schools, fire safety
By Karen Middleton
karcn^nthcnsncw s-couricr. com
The Athens City Council will meet Wednesday because of a delay due to the Memorial Day holiday.
The work session will begin at 4:30 p.m. with a 15-minute presentation by Public Works Department Director James Rich and go into regular session at 5 p.m.
Heading the regular calendar will be approval of an ordinance to refinance general obligation school bonds and general obligation warrants.
City Clerk John Hamilton said the refinancing of the 1999 bonds would bring in new money for school improvements and also provide funding toward City Hall improvements and the new fire station No. 3 in Martin Luther King Jr. Industrial Park off Roy Long Road.
Also on Wednesday’s agenda are these items:
• Equipment purchase for Cemeteiy, Parks & Recreation;
• Resolution to begin construction of the new fire station on Cowford Road to serve Black’s Landing;
• Approval of low bid for switchboard panels for the Athens District Substation;
• Approval of low bid for voltage regulator controls for the Electric Department;
• Travel expense for the Water/Wastewater Department;
• Ordinance to amend rates for potable water service for the water department;
• Ordinance to amend volume charges for the Water Department; and
• Adoption of the revised 2009 Water and Wastewater Department budget.
Making a name for Belle Chevre
NEWS COURIER/KAREN MIDDLETON
Tasia Malakasis, left, owner of the award-winning Belle Chevre creamery near Ardmore, checks a new batch of goat cheese as it is withdrawn from the extruder by her head cheese maker Viola Mills.
Goat cheese known across nation, little in Limestone
By Karen Middlkiyjn
Imagine a young professional woman changing her life for cheese.
Tasia Malakasis, a former marketing specialist for software companies, is determined to make her Belle Chevre goat cheese a brand name across the nation — if not here.
Few people in Limestone County know that a goat cheese once served in Bill Clinton’s White House to Middle East digni
taries was manufactured in a tiny building off Bethel Road near Ardmore.
While technically bearing an Elkmont address, the cheese operation is closer to Ardmore. Malakasis became the owner in January 2007, but goat cheese has been made onsite for 20 years under a previous owner.
Huntsville native Malakasis was recently recognized in Country Living Magazine as one of six women entrepreneurs. She was
See Cheese, page 3A