“Cane River Bohemia” Book Signing Held at Cammie G. Henry Research Center

Patricia Austin Becker (4)

NSU’s Cammie G. Henry Research Center was the scene of a sold out book signing for “Cane River Bohemia: Cammie G. Henry and Her Circle at Melrose Plantation” Thursday October 18th. The book is written by Patricia Austin Becker, who teaches English at Bossier High when she is not writing about history, is published by LSU Press. The author first became interested in her subject when touring Melrose Plantation. She heard about the artist’s colony Cammie Henry hosted from shortly after her husband’s death in 1918 until shortly before her death in 1948 and became curious about the woman behind it all. Ms. Becker was unable to find any books concerning Cammie Henry. That lack was to set her on a five year research quest going through Cammie Henry’s papers at the NSU archive. The result is an interesting story of a unique woman who raised a family, ran a plantation and hosted an artist’s colony featuring writers, painters and other creative artists. The signing also marked the opening of a display at the Cammie G. Henry Research Center of items and papers relating to Cammie Henry, her family and some of the writers and other artists who lived and worked at Melrose.

Alpha Beta Alpha Promotes Libraries at NSU

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There is a student organization founded by Eugene Watson, the namesake of Northwestern State University’s Watson Library, that is still going strong after over 60 years. Alpha Beta Alpha is a fraternity dedicated to the promotion of library science. The organization was founded at NSU by the librarian Eugene Watson in the 1950’s. The 25 members of NSU’s Alpha chapter carry on the fraternity’s mission with monthly meetings centered around different themes. October’s meeting was held October 18th at the NSU library and, of course featured a Halloween theme. Even Watson, a mannequin who is the library’s mascot, joined in the fun with a wig and little black dress. NSU is joined by Pennsylvania’s Kutztown University in hosting a Alpha Beta Alpha chapter. Scholars’ College sophomore Jean McQuilling is the fraternity’s president.

Ponderings with Doug – October 19, 2018


There are several of “us” who are outnumbered in Natchitoches.

“We” are Alabama fans. I am an Alabama fan because I was born in the state. In Alabama one does not inquire as to political affiliation, one wants to know “are they an Alabama fan or an Auburn fan?” I grew up in a home, where we had a dachshund named “Bama.” We had another dachshund named, “Schlitz” but that is another article.

The irony is that my kids and money when to LSU.

One of my guilty pleasures is to watch Nick Saban’s press conferences. I enjoy his post-game press conferences. No matter how bad Bama has thumped the opposition, Saban is always calling the team to make improvements to some part of the game. I’m telling you LSU fans right now, if the Bama-LSU game comes down to a field goal, Bama is toast. Our field goal kicker has two left feet and our punter has the shanks. Maybe that game will be rained out!

In my warped world I wonder what would happen if Nick Saban gave a post-worship service press conference.

You must imagine Coach Saban standing behind a podium with a Coke on the edge of the podium. Behind him is a digital screen with the logo of the Methodist church and our primary sponsor floating on the screen. Who is our primary sponsor?

Coach Saban speaking, “How are you guys doing?”

“Well, today we had a great church service. The sinners are a very good team this year, but I was proud of the way we competed and overcame adversity. I was also pleased that we got off to such a good start in the first service. It is important against a team who runs the distraction offense to get off to a quick start in the service.

We had couple of false starts early. During the offering the usher going down the wrong aisle could have hurt the service, but we over came that. We will work with our ushers this week on developing quickness and making sure none of the money falls out of the offering plate. If the ushers are controlling the offering, the rest of the team works better. The choir and the organists were flawless today.

We made some adjustments before the contemporary service. We are so proud of that group. With the college kids out for fall break, we brought in some of our younger players. They did a great job. Every player needs to be ready to get in the game. Every player needs to improve every week.

We are proud of our preacher. He is a good service manager. He doesn’t throw homiletic interceptions. He does a great job of time management during his sermons. He is really growing as a leader of the church. When the music is good, it takes so much pressure off him and makes his reading of the room more precise.

So next week, we have a big challenge before us. We will be at full strength in next week’s service. Only a couple of minor injuries, a tenor in the choir sprained his voice trying to get the high C. One guy in the back bumped his head when he fell asleep during the sermon.

You guys know our big rival is the opening of deer season. This is a rivalry Sunday. This date has been on our calendar since last year. The other team will be ready to play. They will have their licenses in hand, their stands ready and their guns loaded. We were challenged last year by deer season. We didn’t finally defeat them until the big Christmas Eve service. It looks like they are going to be strong again this year.

You guys in the media, don’t tell our church how good they are. I don’t want the team eating the rat poison thinking that because we had one good Sunday that is all we need to do. We need to work the process every Sunday. We need to improve every Sunday. We need to grow as a team. We need to do the things that we know bring success. We need to do our jobs well.”

If you want to imagine Coach Ed Orgeron doing the same thing, you must first have a person who can interpret someone speaking in Cajun tongues. Ed Orgeron would also be more enjoyable and encouraging.

What if Sunday morning church was more like Saturday night in Tiger Stadium?

Would you want to miss that?

Free Tootsie Rolls this Saturday

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The Natchitoches Knights of Columbus will be giving out free Tootsie Rolls this Saturday, Oct. 20. Their annual “Tootsie Roll Drive” is a national effort to collect funds for the mentally challenged. Watch for their yellow vests and collection cans at local stores and please be generous. Every little bit helps. Pictured above are Henry Rachal, Chad Thibedeax and Barry Antee.

Lumber Mill Owner Arrested for Theft

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A Natchitoches Parish man is accused of theft by misappropriation. On October 15, 2018, Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) enforcement agents arrested 73-year-old Larry R. Davis who is accused of misappropriating funds for timber valued at $128,000.

LDAF Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M., said, “Investigators started receiving complaints in April from logging companies in Avoyelles, Natchitoches and Rapides parishes that timber was being delivered to Davis Lumber Co. in Natchitoches Parish and the loggers were not being compensated for the delivered timber.”

LDAF agents conducted an investigation and discovered that Davis allegedly sold the timber delivered by logging companies without compensating the victims. Investigators also said Davis misappropriated funds intended to be paid to the victims for their timber.

Agents obtained arrest warrants on Davis in Rapides Parish for theft over $5,000, in Natchitoches Parish for theft over $25,000, and Avoyelles Parish for theft over $25,000.

Davis was booked into the Natchitoches Parish Detention Center on Oct. 15. He was released on a $25,000 bond.

Job Opening: Head Chef at Ben D. Johnson Educational Center

BDJ Job Opening

JOB TITLE: Head Chef/Culinary Trainer
POSITION: This is a full time salaried position
LOCATION: Ben D. Johnson Educational Center, 400 MLK Drive, Natchitoches
REPORTS TO: Executive Director

BENEFITS: Benefit Package including Paid Time Off (PTO), Staff Meals

The Head Chef is responsible for the overall management of the Legacy Café’s kitchen operations, including all food preparation and production, management of daily kitchen operations to ensure exceptional quality and presentation of meals, managing all other food preparation employees, food and supply purchasing, planning and executing all menu items and specials for both the café and catering business centers.

The Head Chef will also act as the Culinary Trainer who will instruct students in all phases of culinary training both in the kitchen and classroom settings.

Send your resume to: drussell@bdjcenter.org

You may call with questions: (318) 460-7460

Job_Description – HEAD CHEF

Letter to the Editor: Marthaville Cemetery, Inc. meeting this Saturday (Tomorrow)

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At the annual membership meeting of the Marthaville Cemetery, Inc. in June 2018, the membership voted unanimously to have a special election on this Saturday, October 20, 2018 at 10:00am, because no election was held at the annual meeting.
In the current Articles of Incorporation of Marthaville Cemetery, Inc. (MCI) it states that the only way to replace a vacant or an expiring term of an officer or a broad of directors member is through an election.

The current appointed President, a James Gandy, published in a follow-up letter in August of 2018 to all members of MCI that the meeting would be held as voted on by the members that attended the annual meeting.

The only qualifications stated in the articles of incorporation and current by laws for an officer or director is to have a relative buried in the Marthaville Cemetery and attend in person the meeting.

A letter dated September 30, 2018, post marked October 9, 2018 written by Gandy states that the election meeting has been cancelled because no one submitted qualifications to him. No where in MCI articles or by laws does it state that, only you have to be a current member and attend the election meeting.

Therefore, many local current members had a meeting and agreed to go forward with the election meeting. We have been denied access to the minutes of MCI meetings and have been denied access to the mailing list for the above letters by Gandy.

Therefore we request you publish in NPJ notice that the election of new broad members and officers will be held as voted on by the current members, this Saturday, October 20, 2018, 10:00 am at the cemetery.

This notice has been published three times in the local newspaper, the Natchitoches Times. It has been published in social media by many current members, Many members have been called via phone and asked to call others. Had we had access to the current mailing list of the above letters, we would have mailed a letter to all that received the above letters.

As stated in writing by Gandy, the only way to address him now is through his attorney, Ronald Brandon, Many, La. We talked to Mr Brandon and notified him we were having the above meeting. We also notified the current appointed broad of directors, except treasurer Mrs Glyndal Gandy who was not at her stated home address.

We are requesting security by the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s office, and will have an Louisiana Bar Attorney conduct the written agenda election procedure.
We have also notified our current Louisiana State Elected Senator and State Representative.

Thank you in advance for helping us spread the word.

Fuzzy Hennigan

Foundation with Missing $19,500 is Supposed to Be Audited This Year

By Edwin Crayton



At the October 19, 2018 meeting of the Natchitoches Community Improvement Foundation (NCIF), I pointed out that according to section 6.10 of their bylaws, the foundation is supposed to be audited every three years. That would mean 2018. Chairman Leo Walker seemed both caught off guard and irritated by my suggestion but grumbled that an audit would be done although he did not commit to a time period.
When the audit does happen, it seems proper that as part of that process, those involved should ask and document in writing what happened to $19,500 which NCIF has admitted is unaccounted for. That is because the foundation has never explained what happened to the money or even given any kind of written statement about it. Although the missing funds were revealed in an auditor’s report in 2014, there has never actually been any written documentation of any kind put on record or offered to the public to explain what really happened specifically to the money, or to at least explain in writing, why the foundation has not been required to account for these public funds. The foundation meets quarterly on the second Tuesday of each “meeting” month usually at 7pm at First Baptist Amulet. Next meeting should be January 8, 2019. Check the local paper. NCIF board members are: Leo Walker, Oswald Taylor, Ed Ward Jr., Billye Sue Johnson, Brenda Milner, Shaniqua Hoover, Mildred Joseph, Estelle Braxton, James Below Jr., Catherine Hoover, Kelvin Porter, Renee Porter, Gwendolyn Williams, Diane Blake Jones and Gwen Hardison

“You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.”

Jesus Christ, speaking in John 8:32

Notice of Death – October 18, 2018

Notice of Death 2017


Linda Spillman Franz
August 31, 1943 – October 17, 2018
Service: Sunday, Oct. 21 at 1:30 pm at St. Anne Chapel at Old River, located at 3659 Old River Road in Natchez


Earl Anders
September 9, 1943 – October 14, 2018
Visitation: Friday, October 19 at 5 pm at Warren Meadows Funeral Home in Many
Service: Saturday, October 20 at 2 pm at Cedar Grove Baptist Church
Interment: Cedar Grove Cemetery

Public invited to attend school board candidate forum


The A+ Coalition will hold a School Board Candidate Forum, to take place at the Natchitoches Arts Center Building at 716 2nd Street on Tuesday, Oct. 23 at 6 pm. Candidates will each be given three minutes to speak.

The Forum will be live streamed on the Natchitoches Parish Journal.

The Chamber does not endorse any candidates but does support policies that align with A+ Coalition Goals, outlined below. By the end of the 2025-2026 school year:

Zero C, D or F schools in the district
50% mastery or better on 3-8 assessments
More than 50% of students should graduate with some form of dual enrollment credit
District ACT score ≥ 21
95% graduation rate

For more information about the A+ Coalition and how you can get involved, visit apluscoalition.com.

Chamber luncheon speakers talk healthcare in Natchitoches Parish

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The Natchitoches Area Chamber of Commerce held its monthly luncheon Oct. 17, which provided a comprehensive update on healthcare in Natchitoches. Speakers included Kirk Soileau, CEO of the Natchitoches Regional Medical Center; Tom Matuschka, VP of Business Development and Philanthropy for NRMC; and Sarah Stewart, Radiation Oncology Administrator for the Northwestern Louisiana Cancer Center.

NRMC’s Organizational goals include:

  • Be recognized by Press Ganey in the TOP 5% of Hospital Customer Satisfaction nationally, which is judged on how the hospital’s patients rate it and recommend it
  • Be a top 100 Hospital in the US
  • Earn the Malcolm Baldridge National Quality Award within 5 year

The hospital’s organizational focus includes:

  • Zero patient harm
  • Exceed quality goals and benchmarks
  • Move to become a TOP 100 Hospital
  • Become an organization where people want to join the team
  • Not accept anything but an exceptional patient and family experience

Core Purpose: Care for the Natchitoches community

Mission: Excellence Everyday

Vision: Making the hospital people’s first choice for care

NRMC achieved the prestigious Pathway to Excellence designation by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. The ANCC Pathway to Excellence Program recognizes health care organizations that have the essential elements of an ideal nursing practice environment. There are currently 166 Pathway Organizations worldwide with only two in Louisiana.

The NRMC Wound Care Center has won three national awards in a row from Healogics, the nation’s largest provider of advanced wound care services. With four hyperbaric oxygen therapy chambers and a well trained team, NRMC’s Comprehensive Wound Care Center provides specialized treatment for chronic or non-healing wounds. The experienced team offers an effective means to promote healing, thereby helping to restore healthy tissue and skin.

Planned hospital expansion for the 2019 final year includes:

Revenue bonds under approval for growth and infrastructure projects (9 million)

Completion of the HVAC replacement authorized by the hospital board 7 years ago for 3.5 million (this project is 70% complete)

Reimbursement of the Rite Aid Building Property purchase and its renovation (12 month process) for healthcare use (4 million)

Expansion of the Comprehensive Wound Care Center through a new construction project and ED/Ambulance renovation (13 month project for 2.2 million)

Renovation project to open a Breast Center with 4D Digital Mammography, which should be completed under 90 days once a contractor has been selected after bids (500,000)

Tom Matuschka spoke about a Community Health Needs Assessment the hospital performed.

Sarah Stewart talked about the Cancer Center and its role in the Natchitoches community. It offers radiation oncology services including CT scanner for CT simulation, Monaco Treatment Planning System, Dual Energy Linear Accelerator for state-of-the-art radiation therapy, and Board Certified Medical Physicists and Dosimetrists. Medical oncology services provided include clinical trials, medical oncology, medical hematology and non-chemo and chemotherapy infusions. The Center is also able to offer new services including endocrinology and diabetes and thyroid management.

The Center averages 110 patients per year. Top Diagnoses (51% of total volume) include breast, lung, and prostate cancer. Patients come from all over Natchitoches, Sabine, Winn and Red River Parishes and more.

Cane River Brewery owners speak to Rotary Club

Cane River Brewer Rotary Meeting 10_16_18

Drake Owens of the Natchitoches Rotary Club introduced the speakers for the meeting, Justin Krouse and Cade Gentry from the Cane River Brewing Company. They discussed how original class projects in a restaurant management class at Northwestern led to an idea to create, plan and construct the Cane River Brewing Company. They shared the history of the business, location, products, and brewing process. They noted the facility will be open to the public in the near future to sample and purchase their beers.

Pictured above, from left are Richard White, club president, Cade Gentry and Justin Krouse, Cane River Brewing Company, and Drake Owens, Natchitoches Rotary Club.