Poche family donation supports 2 scholarships and NSU Fishing Team

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Gage Ulrich of Pineville and Jackson McGee of Shreveport are recipients of this year’s Dylan Kyle Poche Memorial Scholarships, presented to Northwestern State University freshmen students who join the NSU Fishing Team. Both expressed gratitude to the Poche family for the scholarship during a presentation Aug. 24.

The $14,000 donation to the NSU Foundation was funded by proceeds from the Dylan Kyle Poche Memorial Bass Tournament held at Toledo Bend. This year’s tournament took place March 24 with 213 boats participating. Ulrich and McGee will each receive $2,500 for the Fall 2018 and Spring 2019 semester. The family donated an additional $4,000 to the NSU Fishing Team to defray expenses as they attend tournaments around the country.

“We hope the tournament continues to grow so we can give more and more scholarships,” said Burt Poche.

The Dylan Kyle Poche Memorial Fishing Scholarship was established by Poche’s parents, Burt and Shelley Poche and Misty Ott. Poche was a 2015 graduate of Natchitoches Central High School and an avid outdoorsman. He excelled at tournament fishing and was a member of the NCHS Fishing Team and the NSU Fishing Team as a freshman. He passed away in January 2016. Preference for the scholarship is given to students from Natchitoches, Sabine, Rapides, Caddo, Bossier, Winn, Grant or DeSoto parishes who join the NSU Fishing Team with preference given to those who participate in the Dylan Kyle Poche Memorial Fishing Tournament.

“This family had something very tragic happen, but they did something wonderful by establishing this scholarship that helps individual students and the NSU Fishing Team,” said NSU Development Officer Jill Bankston, CFRE.

“This is a game changer both in the lives of these young men and for the NSU Fishing Team,” said NSU President Dr. Chris Maggio. “I hope every time you cast that line you think about the fine young man you represent. This is a strong family and I think about the kind of person Dylan was and what he represented. We couldn’t have found two better people to receive the scholarships.”

The NSU Fishing Team is open to all students and taps into the growing popularity of organized competitive bass fishing. The team competes in FLW, B.A.S.S. and Collegiate Bass circuits.

More information about Poche and the tournament is available at dylankylepoche.com. Information the NSU Fishing Team is available at BeADemon.com/fishing. To apply for a scholarship through the NSU Foundation, visit northwesternalumni.com/form or contact Kelly Krouse at kayk@nsula.edu or (318) 357-4248.

NSU presents centenarian Stine with Nth Degree

Stine Family
Northwestern State University honored alumnus J.W. Stine of Sulphur with the Nth Degree, a special award that recognizes an individual for meritorious service to others. Stine, a World War II veteran combat pilot and long-time Louisiana businessman and philanthropist, celebrated his 100th birthday July 22.

Stine was born to Sulphur residents Andrew Stine and Elma Landry Stine and attended Sulphur High School, where he played quarterback for four years. He enrolled at Normal College, as NSU was then known, on a football scholarship in 1939 and lived in Caspari Hall, then a men’s dormitory. He left school to join the U.S. Army Air Corps, now the U.S. Air Force, in 1943 and was sent overseas in 1944.

Just before he left to serve overseas, he married his high school sweetheart Dorris “Dee Dee” Drost in 1944. They were married 67 years until her passing in 2011 and raised six sons and one daughter. Stine has 31 grandchildren and 71 great-grandchildren.

In World War II, Stine flew more than 40 combat missions as pilot of a B-26 Marauder in the 17th Bombardment Group, which conducted missions against targets throughout the Mediterranean, Italy, France and Germany.

After the war Stine and a friend started a construction company and later a lumber company in Sulphur, now called Stine Lumber Company. He became the sole owner in 1952, and during the 1960s and 70s, all six of his sons joined him in the family business. Headquartered in Sulphur, the company employs 850 associates at 10 locations in Louisiana and one in Mississippi. Although he has been retired for many years, Stine still has an office in the business. Stine Lumber hosted a 100th birthday celebration at each of its stores on Aug. 4, a private family celebration also took place.

Stine is a member of Our Lady of Prompt Succor Catholic Church in Sulphur and has been a member of the Knights of Columbus and the American Legion for many years. He has supported many organizations in the community and in 1989, was awarded Citizen of the Year by the Diocese of Lake Charles.

Closure of St. Denis Street Extended Until Further Notice


The City of Natchitoches would like to advise the public that the temporary closure of St. Denis Street from Second Street to Third Street originally set to end Tuesday, August 21, 2018 will remain closed until further notice, due to the extent of work being done to upgrade waterlines and recent rain fall in the area.

During this closure, traffic may detour around the work site via the adjacent network of City streets. When traveling near the work zone, motorists are advised to exercise caution and to observe all warning signs and flagger instructions.

For questions relative to this temporary closure, please call the Mayor’s office at (318) 352-2772.

Notice of Death – August 24, 2018

Notice of Death 2017


Laura Lee Price Carroll
July 26, 1932 – Aug. 21, 2018
Visitation: Saturday, Aug. 25 from 5-8 pm and Sunday, Aug. 26 from 1-2 pm at Calvary Baptist Church
Service: Sunday, Aug. 26 at 2 pm at Calvary Baptist Church of Natchitoches
Interment: Calvary Baptist Church Cemetery

Hayward Odean Steadman
Feb. 17, 1943 – Aug. 21, 2018
Service: Saturday, Aug. 25 at 3 pm at Old Bethel Baptist Church in Natchitoches
Interment: Old Bethel Baptist Cemetery
Visitation: Friday, Aug. 24 from 5-8 pm at Old Bethel Baptist Church, located at 504 Old Bethel Church Road in Natchitoches

Josephine Coutee
Nov. 25, 1917 – Aug. 20, 2018
Visitation: Saturday, Aug. 25 from 9-11 am at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Cloutierville
Service: Saturday, Aug. 25 at 11 am at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Cloutierville
Interment: St. John the Baptist Catholic Cemetery

J.L. Hicks
Visitation: Saturday, Aug. 25 from 9-11 am at Restoration Apostolic Church, located at 175 Fairgrounds Road
Service: Saturday, Aug. 25 at 11 am at Restoration Apostolic Church\
Interment: Lawrence Serenity Sanctum

Edith Farley
Visitation: Saturday, Aug. 25 from 11 am – 1 pm at the St. Peter Baptist Church in Campti
Service: Saturday, Aug. 25 at 1 pm at the St. Peter Baptist Church
Interment: Campti Community Cemetery

Beverly Jo Prudhomme Shields
Visitation: Friday, Aug. 24 from 6:30-8:30 pm at the Agape Love Center, located at 1515 Texas Street in Natchitoches
Service: Saturday, Aug. 25 at 2 pm at the First Baptist Church, located at 1116 Amulet Street in Natchitoches
Interment: Lawrence Serenity Sanctum


Brenda A. Pardue
Oct. 15, 1942 – Aug. 21, 2018
Visitation: Saturday, Aug. 25 from 5-9 pm at Southern Funeral Home and Sunday, Aug. 26 from 1-2 pm at The Family Church
Service: Sunday, Aug. 26 at 2 pm at The Family Church
Interment: Garden of Memories in Winnfield

Mary L. Pattain-Mitchell
May 26, 1942 – Aug. 21, 2018
Arrangements TBA

Karwaski Miles
March 13, 1980 – Aug. 22, 2018
Arrangements TBA

Frederick Evans
June 8, 1964 – Aug. 22, 2018
Arrangements TBA

Mildred Sherman
Jan. 17, 1927 – Aug. 21, 2018
Arrangements TBA

Beverly Shields
January 25, 1943 – Aug. 19, 2018
Arrangements TBA

How does the new traffic signal work?

Traffic Light

In an effort to improve traffic flow at the Williams and St. Clair Avenue intersection, the LA Department of Transportation and Development installed a new traffic signal head in July to the unsignalized approach of St. Clair on the side of the intersection that was not previously controlled by a traffic signal.

Police Chief Mickey Dove said since the installation of the new signal, motorists still aren’t using the intersection correctly. A camera system was installed to operate the new signal. When motorist pull ahead of the white stop line that’s painted on the road, the sensor can’t pick up their vehicle.

Drivers must stop immediately before the white line, or the traffic signal will not change accordingly. Drivers coming from St. Clair must wait through the cycle set up for the traffic lights at that intersection. DOTD encourages motorists to drive cautiously through the intersection and be aware of all traffic control devices now present as traffic patterns have changed with the installation of the new signals.

Job Opening: Rhodes Properties and Development

Position – Project Manager

Rhodes Job Opening

Job Description – The PM is responsible for developing and maintaining job budgets and schedules from inception to completion. The PM is responsible for coordinating all crews, subcontractors, and suppliers. The PM will be based out of Natchitoches but will require travel to regional locations.

Compensation – The PM will be equipped with Smart Phone, Computer, Truck, and all necessary equipment to complete job tasks. Pay is commensurate to level of experience.

Please drop off your resume & fill out an application at our office at 404 Rapides Drive, Natchitoches.

Paid Notice

TNR Meeting looks to gauge community interest

NHS TNR Program
In an effort to ascertain interest in forming a trap, neuter/spay and release program for feral cats in Natchitoches Parish, the Humane Society will hold a meeting for interested parties Thursday, Aug. 30 at 6 p.m., at the City Municipal Building (Old Chamber of Commerce) 560 Second Street.

Discussion will be held of what would be needed from volunteers to make the program work as well as options for fundraising and grants.

The turnout for this meeting will determine whether the Humane Society will move forward with the program.

Address any questions to natchitocheshumane@yahoo.com or contact the NHS via facebook.

LSMSA Ranked Top 1% of America’s Best High Schools

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The Louisiana School for Math, Science, and the Arts (LSMSA) has once again been ranked within the top one percent of public high schools in the nation, according to Niche’s 2019 Best Public High Schools in America list. Additionally, the school’s teachers were again listed as the third best public school faculty in the country. This is the fourth year in a row the school has received high rankings from Niche.

“I love it here,” said History Instructor Kelly Lankford, who is entering her seventh year at the school. “LSMSA ranks so highly because the faculty love it here, and the students respond to that.”

Lankford stated that the environment and the community are what make the school such a unique one to attend.

Recent graduate Caitlin Foster (‘18) reflected the same sentiment. “I loved the community between the students and the teachers here,” she said. “It always felt open, and everyone was willing and happy to help.”

“Attending the school is a very unique and rigorous opportunity for Louisiana’s best students to not only earn an internationally recognized diploma, but to also gain a significant number of college credit hours,” said Executive Director Steve Horton.

Through articulation agreements with schools in the University of Louisiana system, students have the opportunity to earn up to 74 hours of college credit for their LSMSA courses as well as pursue an associate’s degree while enrolled at LSMSA. Additionally, a robust Memorandum of Understanding with Northwestern State University gives students access to more than 80 courses that qualify for dual enrollment.

“All of our students are academically driven,” Horton continued. “However, we offer many opportunities for participation in athletic programs at LSMSA and through our partner parish schools. We appreciate the recognition given to us by Niche–both for our school and also for our excellent faculty and staff.”

Niche’s annual K-12 rankings are based on a rigorous analysis of dozens of statistical factors and millions of reviews from students and parents. Along with the rankings, Niche also released 2019 report cards, which assign letter grades to more than 100,000 K-12 schools and districts across America on topics like academics, college readiness and teachers.

LSMSA earned an A+ in academics, teachers, clubs and activities, administration, college prep, health and safety, and resources and facilities.

Currently, LSMSA is the only state-funded residential high school that specializes in nurturing the academic excellence of some of Louisiana’s top sophomores, juniors, and seniors. With the competitive nature of admission into the school, students from all over the state actively seek out acceptance into the program.

For the school’s full ranking, visit https://www.niche.com/k12/louisiana-school-for-math-science–and–the-arts-natchitoches-la/rankings/.

Double the Fun with the Hamptons of Natchitoches OPEN HOUSE Event!


Rhodes-Main Open House 08-25-18


Join the Rhodes Realty team Sunday, August 26 from 1-3PM at the “Hamptons of Natchitoches” for their largest Open House event yet! Complete with boat rides, hot dogs, snacks and drinks at both homes, Rhodes Realty is doubling the fun with two stunning properties, 805 Red Bow Drive and 932 Hampton Road. Local bank representatives will be available for all your home loan questions.

“These two beautiful homes are the closest you will get to true waterfront resort style living for miles around,” says Kathy Richmond, Rhodes Realty listing agent for both homes.

These homes are only minutes away from downtown shopping and will soon be even easier to access. Parish President Rick Nowlin confirmed new asphalt road work will begin in September, 2018!

805 Red Bow Drive: $599,000
3BR, 3.5BA, 3,400SF

805 Red Bow Drive

932 Hampton Road: $499,000
4BR, 3.5BA, 3,010SF

932 Hampton Road


Directions: From Natchitoches: Keyser to Hwy 494, Left on Hampton Road. From Alexandria: I-49 to Exit 127 Flora/Cypress. Cross over Hwy 1 to Hwy 494, continue approx 8-10 miles. Cross over Pratts Bridge, turn right on Hampton Rd.

For more information contact Kathy Richmond at 318-332-8357 or Rhodes Realty at 318-238-8357. Rhodes Realty is located at 404 Rapides Drive in Natchitoches.

Ponderings with Doug – August 24, 2018

The Apostle Paul wrote, “Forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on.”

Step one, forgetting. Step two straining forward. That is how we think. What if there is only one step in pressing on? The “and” implies two. It is the additive conjunction, right? You can’t have one thing, when “and” is present.

The 20th-century Quaker theologian Elton Trueblood once called and the “holy conjunction.” He emphasized this in important subjects like Christ’s humanity and divinity, roots and fruits, the inner life of devotion and the outer life of service.

He pointed to Jesus’ statements regarding the great commandments: “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ … And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself’” (Matthew 22:37-39).

But the late M. Scott Peck, a psychiatrist and best-selling author who wrote a lot about religious themes, took the idea of a holy conjunction further. He argued that the ability to integrate faith and reason into our lives is part of what constitutes integrity. “Instead of an either/or style of mentation, we are pushing for both/and thinking. We are not trying to get rid of reason but promote ‘reason plus.’ Reason and mystery. Reason and emotion. Reason and intuition. Reason and revelation. Reason and wisdom. Reason and love.”

Peck goes on to say that the holy conjunction allows us to envision a world where a business can make a profit and be ethical, where government can promote political order and social justice, where medicine can be practiced with technological proficiency and compassion, where children can be taught science and religion.

Today, the holy conjunction is more necessary than ever, allowing one to be politically conservative and advocate social justice or where one can be politically liberal and promote personal responsibility. “The holy conjunction is the conjunction of integrity,” Peck says.

The point is that forgetting and looking forward can be considered one action. That seems like a glaring contradiction. How can you forget and look forward at the same time?

Parker J. Palmer, who writes on spirituality, says that more than once he “despaired at the corrosive effect” upon his spiritual life of his contradictions. He explains, “I had thought that living spiritually required a resolution of all contraries and tensions before one could hope, as it were, to earn one’s wings.” But he says that as he labored to remove these contradictions before presenting himself to God, his spiritual life “became a continual preliminary attraction, never quite getting to the main event.”

Palmer eventually realized he had to become less focused on the contradictions in his life and more focused on what God wanted him to learn. “Perhaps,” he concluded, “contradictions are not impediments to the spiritual life, but an integral part of it. Through them we may learn that the power for life comes from God, not from us.” This makes the grace of God “a gift to all of us whose lives are pulled between the poles.”

And to that point, Palmer quotes the Trappist monk and author Thomas Merton, who said, “I have become convinced that the very contradictions in my life are in some ways signs of God’s mercy to me; if only because someone so complicated and so prone to confusion and self-defeat could hardly survive for long without special mercy.”

Pressing on!

Ben D. Johnson Educational Center Receives $15,000 Grant from Newman’s Own Foundation

Ben Johnson Center

Ben D. Johnson Educational Center Receives $15,000 Grant from Newman’s Own Foundation

Ben D. Johnson Educational Center has been awarded a $15,000 grant from Newman’s Own Foundation, the independent foundation created by the late actor and philanthropist, Paul Newman. The award to Ben D. Johnson Educational Center was made by Newman’s Own Foundation as part of its commitment to address issues of fresh food access and nutrition education.

The grant to Ben D. Johnson Educational Center will be used to create a year-round Green Market providing west Natchitoches with increased access to fresh, locally produced food. The market is a component of the programming under development at 400 MLK Jr. Drive, a space that has a history of providing educational opportunities and support for area residents.

The Ben D. Johnson Educational Center was founded to honor the legacy of a man who provided economic, educational, and social support to Natchitoches. As important as his business accomplishments were- his holdings represented one of the largest minority-owned enterprises in the state- Mr. Johnson’s lifelong commitment to his community is his true legacy.

Claire Prymus, founder and Board Chair, “the Ben D. Johnson Educational Center is grateful for this generous financial support that will help us bring positive change to the entire community through food-based social enterprise.”

The mission of Ben D. Johnson Educational Center is to build community in Natchitoches and give access to social and economic success for all of its residents.

Founded by Claire Prymus in honor of her late uncle, the Ben D. Johnson Educational Center is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization with a commitment to building community and providing access and opportunities for residents in Natchitoches, Louisiana.

DNA results confirm identity of body found in Bayou Pierre

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According to Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office detectives the results of the State Crime Lab DNA analysis confirmed that the body found floating in Bayou Pierre on May 16 was that of K’yia Monique Pier, 19 of the Natchitoches/Coushatta area. The investigation is ongoing and the Sheriff’s Office asks that anyone with information regarding K’yia contact Det. Jonathan Byles at 318-357-7830.