Athens News Courier (Newspaper) - November 13, 2005, Athens, Alabama
National Education Week turns attention to the classroom 6A
Tide falls in OT
LSU spoils Bama’s dreams of a perfect I season with 16-13 OT thriller IB
Serving Athens and Limestone County: A Community of Tradition and Fi hre
Si nday, November 13, 2005
o-frct tn/frtnCnBobby Vaughn of AthensSubscriber of the dayCourt rules for mother
Giles County found at fault in 2003 drownings at Veto
BY SONW Tl RNLR
sonnv(a athensnews-courier.com The Giles County, Tenn., Highway Department has been found at fault in the Feb. 16, 2003, drowning of 10-year-old Emmett Ferguson and his 7-year-old sister Eliza Ferguson on the rain-sw ollen Elk River near Veto.
The ruling came recently after sever
al days of testimony before Giles County Circuit Judge Jim T. Hamilton in Pulaski. Tenn. The judge ruled that the mother of the children, Donna Ferguson, is entitled to $500,000 in damages.
In addition, the count found that “no degree of fault" should be attributed to the victims' aunt, Lisa Norwood who was driving the car that night when it
ran off the bridge
into the water. Norwood survived, but the children were swept away by the current and drowned.
Hamilton's order said there was “no excuse” why Giles County did not close Veto Road to traffic on both the north and southside of Hargrove-Johnson Bridge that night. The bridge separates Prospect, Tenn., to the north and Veto to the south.
After the ruling, members of the family said it wasn't about the money, but the fact that Giles County should bare the burden of w hat happened that night.
In issuing the order, the judge concluded that “the placing of signs by the
See Drownings, Page 2A
Other Views 5A
Our Opinion 4A
Chance Carr Davis Myrtle E. Evans A.E. Poff Martha A. Porter Floyd Coleman Quillen Jr. Patsy L. Williams
Daily Bible Moment
liet iis lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us.
* 322 Hwv. 31 N- Athens
-.TrT-W Obit line 256-771-0934
Open house to kick off the holidays
By Tashia Lovell
It's only November, but it wouldn't hurt to begin Christmas shopping.
Today from 1 p.m.-5 p.m. there will be a Christmas Open House in Athens hosted by the Greater Limestone County Chamber of Commerce.
It’s a kick-off to the Christmas shopping season.
Pat Bullington, office manager for the Chamber of Commerce, said that it costs $85 for chamber members to participate in the open house and $100 for non-members.
Merchants participating in this year's open house are Pablo's on Market, Gray & Holt Dry Goods, Exit Reality Group, Limestone Drug, Kid’s World, CEI Bookstore, The Grasshopper, Cluxton’s Jewelry and John Deere Toys & Apparel.
At each participating busi-
See Holidays, Page 2A
Hey, Sound Off:
Two things...Finally, the News-Courier has a reporter w ith the courage to ask hard questions about the way our local politicians conduct government business. The reporter has finally exposed what many suspected all along: back room politics are alive and well in our city.
Secondly, why doesn't Athens have a Veteran's Day Parade? If no one will offer to sponsor it, then I propose that next year all of us veteran’s meet in a local parking lot at 10 a.m. and we'll have our ow n damn parade! Karen Middleton can be the grand marshall*
Hey, Sound Off:
Someone needs to ask “Mayor Dan" why Mr. Ming was at the Annexation Committee’s “non-meeting"... but can we believe any answer other than obvious?
More Sound Off Valley, 6A
Dabbing her eyes with a wad of toilet paper, Donna Green struggles to explain what drug use has done to her life.
— Part 1 of a series
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Mother’s drug use is costly
Bv Karin Gri nden
CNUI News Service Terre Haute. Ind., 2003
At 17 she snorted her first line.
By 23, she was shooting up.
A mere four years later, Donna Green sits on a hospital bed at a Terre Haute nursing home, where a crayon drawing by her daughter and a poster of The Doors are taped to the wall.
Dabbing her eyes with a wad of toilet paper, Green struggles to explain what drug use has done to her life.
“Don’t do it," she said, crying softly.
Words don’t come easily anymore. She clenches her fists, raising and shaking them in frustration over difficulty speaking, a result of a stroke in October.
The right side of her face is numb. She also has trouble writing and remembering certain time periods.
Methamphetamine abuse rotted her lower teeth; she now wears dentures.
Bruise-like splotches of purple mar the underside of her arms from injecting meth. Her face is drawn and her skin is pale.
Although she's decades younger than the woman in the next bed, Green feels nearly as old as her roommate.
See Meth, Page 3A
Joseph C. Garza/The Tribune Star, Terre Haute, Ind. Former methamphetamine user Donna Green holds out her arms to show the condition of her skin as she talks about how the drug affects one s body as she visits with her sister, Cindy Jo Green, Dec. 19, 2002 at Royal Oaks Healthcare & Rehabilitation Center in Terre Haute, Ind.
Crystal meth on increase in Limestone
Bv Karen Middleton
uncnews(it pclnet. net
Local law enforcement officers say that the crystal methamphetamine epidemic sweeping nearby counties has not reached comparable levels in Athens and Limestone County, but there are signs that local meth use and production are on the rise.
The first sign that a nearby “meth lab" is cooking is often theft reports of chemicals such as anhydrous ammonia and unusually large purchases of lye, sulfuric acid, ephedrine-containing products, and red phosphorus.
Athens Police Sgt. Trevor Harris said police have not made an arrest in a summer theft of anhydrous ammonia from a tank at the old ConAgra plant, which caused a leak and the evacuation of several local residents.
Limestone County Sheriff Mike Blakely said one of the first times he heard of crystal meth being used locally was in the mid-1980s when he interviewed convicted murderer Kenny Thomas as part of an anti-drug educational tape to be shown to students.
Thomas was convicted of the 1984 murder of 82-year-old
See Increase, Page 3A
Local woman featured on holiday soda
By Tashia Lovell
task ia(a. athensnews-courier. com
East Limestone resident Tina Swann is not the average mother and wife. She has been a model for a few years and part of her face can currently be found on the label of a bottle of soda.
Her flavor—“Brussels Sprout Soda.”
Swann was selected to be on one the bottles of Jones Soda Company’s national holiday packs.
The pack, which includes five drinks, can be purchased locally at Target in Huntsv ille for
“Once they're gone, they’re gone,” Swann said.
There will be no more of these specific packs made.
“I hope that they sell really well,” she said.
While the initial excitement of it all is great, Swann is really happy to be a part of a national fund-raiser for St. Jude Children’s Hospital.
She said that a portion of the money from the sales of the national pack would go for St. Jude research.
She believ es that her purpose of being apart
See Soda, Page 3A
News-C'ourier/ Kim Rynders
Tina Swann holds a bottle of Jones Soda Co. soda with part of her face on the label. The picture was chosen to be on the label of the “Brussels Sprout Soda,” in the company’s holiday pack.