Notice of Death – August 29, 2021

Dorothy “Dot” Roig Knecht
August 06, 1930 – August 24, 2021
Service: Monday, August 30 at 1 pm at Trinity Episcopal Church

Theresa “Terri” Durr
March 12, 1960 – August 25, 2021
Service: Tuesday, August 31 at 10 am at the Bethel Methodist Church

CLTCC Campuses Closed Monday Due to Hurricane Ida

Due to the threat of Hurricane Ida, all 8 CLTCC campus locations will be closed Monday (August 30). Students and Employees are encouraged to monitor CLTCC electronic mail, Central Louisiana Media, and official social media accounts for updates. CLTCC encourages everyone to plan and be safe during this severe weather event.

Media Contact:
James Sawtelle, Chancellor
(318) 880-8288

Kisatchie announces closures as Hurricane Ida approaches

Due to the impending possibility of Hurricane Ida and subsequent winds and rain expected for Louisiana, the Kisatchie National Forest will enact the following closures: Friday, August 27 – Sandstone Multiple-Use Trail, Caroline Dormon Trail, Kisatchie Hills Wilderness Trails and all Kisatchie Ranger District campgrounds in Natchitoches Parish are closed. All other designated campgrounds and trails within the forest on the Calcasieu, Catahoula, and Winn Ranger Districts will close Sunday morning, August 29 (this includes the Claiborne Multiple-Use trail.) All campgrounds and trails on the Caney Ranger District (near Shreveport/Minden) will remain open. Driving and parking within any location in Kisatchie National Forest is discouraged considering falling tree threats during weather events. 


As, the National Weather Service and National Hurricane Center continue to monitor the progress and track of Tropical Storm Ida which is expected to make landfall as a hurricane along the Louisiana coastline, the Natchitoches Office of Emergency Preparedness and City of Natchitoches has announced that sandbags will be available today, August 27, 2021, at the Natchitoches Public Works Department located at 110 Mill Street, Natchitoches between the hours of 10:30am and 4:30pm.

Additional updates concerning Tropical Storm Ida will be released as they become available.

Cane River Creole NHP – Closed Aug 29-30

Oakland and Magnolia Plantations at Cane River Creole National Historical Park, will be closed on Sunday and Monday, August 29-30, as Tropical Storm Ida is expected to make landfall in Louisiana over the weekend. The plantations WILL remain open to visitors all day on Friday (today) and Saturday. I’ll send out another note when the park reopens, hopefully sometime early next week.

NSU will be closed Monday, Aug. 30 due to severe weather threat

All Northwestern State University campuses will be closed and classes cancelled Monday, Aug. 30, due to the possibility of flooding and other threats from a projected major hurricane aimed at the South Louisiana coast.

The National Weather Service reported Friday that Tropical Storm Ida is likely to become a Category 3 hurricane before coming ashore Sunday.

Gov. John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency across Louisiana Thursday because of the potential impact of the storm.

Northwestern interim president Dr. Marcus Jones said, “Our first concern is for the safety of students, faculty and staff. We encourage students and others not to travel Monday when the university is closed and to exercise extreme caution throughout the weather emergency.”

Severe weather conditions could result in flooded roadways, downed trees and powerlines and other hazards as Ida moves through the state.

Residence halls and dining facilities will remain open at Northwestern Monday, and other essential offices and personnel will be accessible. The 24-hour computer lab in Russell Hall will remain open. Campus events scheduled for Aug. 30 will be postponed.

Dining information for Monday, Aug. 30 is as follows.

Iberville – Open for brunch 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Open for dinner 4:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m.

Vic’s – Closed

Steak and Shake – Open 11 a.m. -6 p.m.

Cafe Demon – 7 a.m.-3 p.m.

Chick-fil A – 10:30 a.m.- 7 p.m.

Jones said plans are for the university to reopen Tuesday for classes and other normal operations.

Parish President declares state of emergency for Natchitoches

President Richmond has declared a state of emergency for Natchitoches Parish. Hurricane Ida is forecasted to make landfall late Sunday evening, with possible impacts for our Parish from Sunday night through Wednesday morning. The storm is currently predicted to make landfall as a major category 3 or stronger.

Residents should begin storm preparations immediately. While several forecast models have the eye of the storm passing over the south central and eastern portions of the state, it is still possible of Ida’s track to veer to the west and follow a similar path as Hurricane Laura did a year ago.

Because of this residents should prepare for a significant impact including life and property threatening winds, impassable roads, large amounts of debris, and extended power outages.

Now is the time to stock up on essential items, such as:
– non perishable food
– bottled water
– gas for cars, generators, and debris removal equipment
– flashlights
– batteries
– medicine

Make sure cell phones and all portable chargers are charged and ready before the storm hits.

Residents who require electricity for life sustaining medical equipment should have a backup power source ready or make arrangements to temporarily relocate if necessary. Residents living in manufactured homes should also make plans to temporarily relocate if necessary.

For residents with generators: DO NOT run the generator inside your home if you lose electricity. The generator should be placed outside and as far away as possible from any open windows.

All residents should continue to monitor updates from the National Weather Service as the storm approaches, and take all precautions to keep you and your family safe.

Fireworks Display and Street Closures for Friday, August 27

NATCHITOCHES – The City of Natchitoches would like to advise the public that on Friday, August 27th, 2021, Front Street from Church Street to St. Denis Street will close at 5:00pm to vehicular traffic in preparation for the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame Taste of Tailgating VIP event to be held at Mama’s Oyster House and Papa’s Bar and Grill.

The following streets will close at 8:45pm in preparation for a 9:15pmfireworks display during the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame’s Rockin’ Riverfest event on the downtown riverbank.

• Church Street bridge
• Williams Ave from Whitfield Ave. to Henry Ave.
Church Street and Williams Avenue will open upon conclusion of the fireworks display once the Fire Marshal has given the all clear.

In preparation for these events, the Downtown riverbank will remain closed to all vehicular traffic throughout the day on Friday, August 27, 2021.


(CRESTON)-Early this morning at approximately 2:41am, Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Deputies and Natchitoches Parish Fire Protection District #2 responded to NATCOM 911 Center reports of a vehicle fire on La. Hwy 9 near Creston according to the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies and NPFD #2 arrived on scene discovering a single-vehicle crash involving a fatality.

Louisiana State Police and the Louisiana State Fire Marshal’s Office at the request of Natchitoches Parish Fire District#2 were notified and responded to the scene.

One person was pronounced dead on the scene by Natchitoches Parish Deputy Asst. Coroner Steven Clanton.

Autopsy and toxicology results are pending.

The identity of the person has not been released at this time pending notification of next of kin.

The crash is being investigated by Troopers assigned to LSP Troop-E Alexandria.

Any additional information related to the crash and identity of the victim will be released by the Louisiana State Police.

On behalf of the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office, we extend our sympathy to the family of the victim.

The 2021 Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame Induction Welcome Reception Starts the Fun!

Several hundred sports enthusiasts and area residents were joined by NSU’s own Doug Ireland and the other inductees into the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame at the welcome reception for the LSHOF’s 2021 class held Thursday, August 26. The event was free and open to the public and was an excellent opportunity to meet some of our state’s sports legends.

The official portraits of each inductee were on display for the first time to the general public. Each portrait shows the inductee in the context of his or her sport and is a tradition of the Hall of Fame. In addition, a silent auction of donated items and sports memorabilia helped raise funds for the organization.

The festivities are far from finished. Friday will feature a concert along the riverbank complete with signature Natchitoches quality fireworks show. Saturday morning will feature the Junior Training Camp on the NSU campus in which young people will be able to test their abilities, win prizes and learn what it takes to succeed on-and off-the playing field. The weekend will culminate at the induction dinner Saturday evening at the Natchitoches Events Center.

Steps to help prevent the spread of COVID-19

Steps to help prevent the spread of COVID-19

If you are sick with COVID-19, or think you might have COVID-19, follow the steps below to care for yourself and to help protect other people in your home and community:

  • Stay home except to get medical care

  • Stay home. Most people with COVID-19 have mild illness and can recover at home without medical care. Do not leave your home, except to get medical care. Do not visit public areas.

  • Take care of yourself. Get rest and stay hydrated.

  • Take over-the-counter medicines, such as acetaminophen, to help you feel better.

  • Stay in touch with your doctor. Call before you get medical care. Be sure to get care if you have trouble breathing, or have any other emergency warning signs, or if you think it is an emergency.

  • Avoid public transportation or ride-sharing.

  • Separate yourself from other people

  • As much as possible, stay in a specific room and away from other people and pets in your home.

  • If possible, you should use a separate bathroom. If you need to be around other people or animals in or outside of the home, wear a cloth face covering.

  • Monitor your symptoms

    o Symptoms of COVID-19: fever, cough, shortness of breath, loss of taste/smell.

  • Follow care instructions from your healthcare provider and local health department. Your local health authorities may give instructions on checking your symptoms and reporting information.

  • When to Seek Emergency Medical Attention:

    o Look for emergency warning signs* for COVID-19. If someone is showing any of these signs, seek emergency medical care immediately:

     Trouble breathing
     Persistent pain or pressure in the chest  New confusion
     Inability to wake or stay awake
     Bluish lips or face

• *This list is not all possible symptoms. Please call your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you. Call 911 or call ahead to your local emergency facility: Notify the operator that you are seeking care for someone who has or may have COVID-19.

  • Call ahead before visiting your doctor:
    o Call ahead. Many medical visits for routine care are being postponed or done by phone or telemedicine.

    o If you have a medical appointment that cannot be postponed, call your doctor’s office and tell them you have or may have COVID-19. This will help the office protect themselves and other patients.

  • If you are sick wear a cloth covering over your nose and mouth

    o You should wear a cloth face covering, over your nose and mouth if you must be around other people or animals, including pets (even at home).

o You don’t need to wear the cloth face covering if you are alone. If you can’t put on a cloth face covering (because of trouble breathing, for example), cover your coughs and sneezes in some other way. Try to stay at least 6 feet away from other people. This will help protect the people around you.

o Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2 years, anyone who has trouble breathing, or anyone who is not able to remove the covering without help.

  • Cover your coughs and sneezes
    o Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
    o Throw away used tissues in a lined trash can.
    o Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

  • Clean your hands often

    o Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. This is especially important after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.

o Use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry.

o Soap and water are the best option, especially if hands are visibly dirty.

o Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • Avoid sharing personal household items

    o Do not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, or bedding with other people in your home.

    o Wash these items thoroughly after using them with soap and water or put in the dishwasher.

  • Clean all “high-touch” surfaces everyday
    o (High touch surfaces include phones, remote controls, counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, keyboards, tablets, and bedside tables.)

o Use household cleaners and disinfectants. Clean the area or item with soap and water

or another detergent if it is dirty. Then, use a household disinfectant.
o Clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces in your sickroom and bathroom; wear

disposable gloves. Let someone else clean and disinfect surfaces in common areas, but

you should clean your bedroom and bathroom, if possible.
o If a caregiver or other person needs to clean and disinfect a sick person’s bedroom or

bathroom, they should do so on an as-needed basis. The caregiver/other person should wear a mask and disposable gloves prior to cleaning. They should wait as long as possible after the person who is sick has used the bathroom before coming in to clean and use the bathroom.

o Clean and disinfect areas that may have blood, stool, or body fluids on them.

‘It’s really incomprehensible:’ Longtime Demon SID Doug Ireland reflects on upcoming Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame induction

It may not have been “Mama” calling him home like it was for Bear Bryant, but a phone call from his alma mater more than three decades ago brought Doug Ireland to the place he calls home.

Standing in the center of the 24,000-square foot edifice he poured his heart and soul into helping become a reality, Ireland finally took center stage during a Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame press conference to speak about himself instead of simply interviewing others.

“I wouldn’t have come back to anywhere else,” said Ireland, one of three Distinguished Service Award in Sports Journalism honorees announced Thursday during the Class of 2021 Hall of Fame induction news conference. “I worked at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette when it was USL from (19)82 to 85 with Hall of Famer Dan McDonald. That was a wonderful experience, and I loved what I was doing but wound up in the sports writing business and loved what I was doing there.

“I couldn’t imagine going anywhere until Northwestern called. I always thought I was going to go up the ladder as a sports writer and had some great experiences – covered some great games and some Hall of Famers – but Northwestern called. That’s home. Natchitoches already had my heart. They had me at hello.”

Typically, it’s Ireland who offers the initial “hello” from the Hall of Fame to its newest inductees, serving as the Hall’s chairman. He then emcees the annual news conference that airs live on Cox Sports Television.

Ireland, who spent more than 30 years as the sports information director and an assistant athletic director at Northwestern State, pulled double duty this time as the Hall inducted its second class in two months after the Class of 2020’s induction was postponed a year by the COVID-19 pandemic.

As one of the driving forces behind the physical creation of the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame and Northwest Louisiana History Museum that anchors the north end of downtown Natchitoches, Ireland saw his share of delays. The proverbial wait was worth it, however, for Ireland when the museum thrust open its doors in 2013 with a larger-than-life induction class headlined by Shaquille O’Neal, who dubbed the town “Shaqitoches.”

“No,” Ireland emphatically stated when asked whether he doubted the project would reach completion. “The greatness of the institution is so profound. You go all the way back to the first induction class in 1958 and the heroes, the legends, the stories. That transcends any region of the state. From Ida on the Arkansas border to Grand Isle, from Lake Providence to Lake Charles, there’s Louisiana sports history that anchors the state. Fortunately, governmental leaders and politicians all the way up to the governor’s office – certainly the lieutenant governors – they all understood that. That’s what kept us going.

“The building was far more than we dared to dream. To see it come to fruition was incredibly gratifying. Most of all, to have Hall of Famers who had been inducted – some for many years, some in their later years – to be moved by that experience and to be able to walk through here was pretty good stuff. Shelia Thompson-Johnson, who was our first girls All-American basketball player and later a player and athletic director at Louisiana College, she came and hug me and cried.”

Befitting his reputation as a storyteller and someone who shined a light on others for close to four decades, Ireland continued to talk about others on a day where he was honored. Even as fellow Louisiana Sports Hall of Famer Kent Lowe asked him about his career, invariably Ireland turned it around to focus on someone beside himself.

“It’s really incomprehensible,” he said. “I’m here on the shoulders of so many people who have been my teammates, my colleagues, my mentors – from the Northwestern and sports information perspective, the sports journalism perspective and from the Hall of Fame perspective. This is the people’s sports temple in Louisiana. Our state leaders from 2000 forward, for the past 21 years, have been so supportive of recognizing how important sports are in this state and how much a part of the true culture and heartbeat of the state sports are. It is a mass of people who have allowed me to receive this accolade, and I’m absolutely blown away by the reality of it.”

Natchitoches Parish Early Childhood Network hosts Online Job Fair for Type III Child Care Centers

The Natchitoches Parish Early Childhood Network is hosting an online job fair beginning Aug. 27.

Whether hoping to find a fresh start, a better job, or a new career, job seekers will find a wealth of exciting opportunities working in Early Childhood Education. All local Type III Child Care employers are eager to hire for immediate openings in a wide range of fields.

Staffing is a challenge for any business, but this is perhaps most true for the child care industry. We need to find qualified, responsible candidates who we can trust to care for our young children. Job responsibilities are diverse and challenging however extremely rewarding to those that enjoy education, growth and development in children.

“We are excited at the response we have received from employers who want to participate in this online job fair. This opportunity connects our community’s talented workers with great employers looking to hire. This job fair is a great way to connect with multiple employers by completing one application. The number one goal is to provide and sustain  dedicated educators and staff to our youngest learners in this community. Working with these sites will offer higher education opportunities, pay incentives, and the joy of working with children that learn and grow at an extremely fast rate. The work is hard, the hours are long, but the reward is in ensuring children are receiving high quality education and care as they acquire a lifelong love for learning,” said Amy Metoyer-Roberson, City of Natchitoches Early Childhood Coordinator.

This opportunity is open to the entire community and those wishing to relocate to Natchitoches. One application is all you need to submit for employment consideration amongst 9 Child Care Centers. Positions vary from Lead and/or Assistant Teachers, Floaters, Substitutes, Cooks, Van Drivers, Assistant Directors, and so much more. Options for Full-time, Part-Time, and Seasonal workers are also available.The opportunities are endless with positions available to begin immediately pending an approved Background Check.

Your application will only be shared with centers you select for employment consideration.

Each Center will contact you directly to schedule interviews and next step procedures however please note :




Application for Employment Link:

For more information, please contact Early Childhood Coordination, Amy Metoyer-Roberson at


Kiwanis Club of Natchitoches Elects New Board Member

Kiwanis Club of Natchitoches elected member Tiffany Woods to the club’s 2021-22 Board of Directors. The club was virtually visited by Darren Green, the incoming division lieutenant governor. Green was joined by other members of the Kiwanis Club of Alexandria. Green spoke about the role of lieutenant governor and led a discussion where club best practices were shared.

Pictured left to right is club president Craig Caskey and incoming board member Tiffany Woods.

Make storm preparations now for Tropical Storm Ida

As Tropical Storm Ida approaches, Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M., is urging both livestock and pet owners to monitor weather advisories and prepare their property, pets and/or livestock.

“Though the track of this storm remains uncertain, some areas in Louisiana could experience flash flooding and coastal flooding from storm surge,” Strain said. “Livestock and pet owners should be prepared to move animals to higher ground or evacuate, if necessary.”

Strain said no evacuations have been issued at this time but recommends checking the condition of trailer tires, having livestock health documentation in order and anything else you may need if you must evacuate and move livestock.

Important livestock items to take during an evacuation:

Health records, identification (especially proof of EIA testing for horses)
Special medications
Bridles or leads

Important pet items to take during an evacuation:

Health records, identification
Food, water and bowls
Special medications
Pet carriers

Livestock owners should identify an area on the property that is least likely to flood where animals can quickly and easily be moved when severe weather threatens the area.

Livestock owners who need assistance should call their local Office of Emergency Preparedness (OEP). For additional information related to pets during disasters, contact your local animal control and/or OEP.

By law, the LDAF is designated by the Louisiana Homeland Security and Emergency Assistance and Disaster Act to assist in the evacuation and sheltering household pets for evacuated citizens going to shelters during declared emergencies. The LDAF has two mobile pet shelters to assist in keeping family pets in close proximity to their owners when an evacuation is necessary.

Obit: John Thomas Colligan

January 23, 1975 – August 19, 2021

A service to honor the life of John Thomas Colligan will be held at 1 pm on Saturday, August 28, 2021 at Blanchard-St. Denis Funeral Home. Burial will follow at L.C. Weaver Cemetery in Campti, LA. The family will receive friends from 5 pm until 8 pm on Friday, August 27th at Blanchard-St. Denis Funeral Home.

John, 46 years of age and a resident of Elgin, TX passed away on August 19, 2021. Although John’s formative years were tough years, it was overcoming those adversities that shaped his character and made him a strong person. He was a truly gifted artist and demonstrated his talents through drawing, painting, glass blowing and even authoring a children’s book. He dearly loved his family and friends, of which he made numerous friends throughout the course of his life. Being an animal lover, he especially was fond of turtles and cats. He enjoyed sci-fi movies, particularly all of the Star Wars movies that he attended with his mother. For many years he worked in the Asset Protection Department of Wal-Mart, and genuinely enjoyed his line of work. He will forever be remembered by his family and friends as a loving and caring person that beyond doubt followed the beat of his own drum. It was those great characteristics that made him the man we will severely miss.

John is survived by his mother, Myra Myers and husband Clem of McKinney, TX; the closest of brothers, Channing Colligan; his children, Ethan and London; and a step-sister, Sara Nelson and husband Wes of Mansfield, TX and their children, Cadence, Davis, and Cora, who John loved like his own children; as well as uncles, aunts and cousins.

Northwestern State names 33 new faculty for 2021-22 year

Northwestern State University is welcoming 33 new faculty for the 2021-22 academic year, according to Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Greg Handel.

New faculty in the College of Nursing and School of Allied Health are Dr. Mattie “Geneva” Caldwell, Emily H. Horton, Tamra Manns, Dr. Stacy Mayeux, Kelli Rachal, Dr. Susan Steele-Moses and Lamia Zeidan.

James D. Cox and Dr. Joseph Straub are new faculty in the School of Biological and Physical Sciences.

Joining the faculty in the Dear School of Creative and Performing Arts are Dr. Sean Bartley, Dr. Robert E. Cardwell, Jonathan Clayton, Dr. John Franklin, Pedro Guevara and Andrew Killion.

The School of Education is welcoming new faculty Dr. Amy Craig, Dr. Jonathan Elmore, Dr. Kathryn Gentry, Dr. Debra Jo Hailey, Dr. Christy Hornsby, Dr. Ginger Kelso, Dr. Laura Beth Norman and Kristen Walker.

New faculty in the Department of Health and Human Performance at Dr. Zidong Li and Dr. Tara Tietjen-Smith.

Dr. David Clark, Catherine B. Faucheaux and McKenna Marsh are new faculty in the College of Business and Technology.

Also joining the faculty are Dr. Jie (Jessica) Zhang of the Department of New Media, Journalism and Communication Arts, Dr. Adonay Sissay of the Louisiana Scholars’ College, Dr. Khirsten Doolanof the Department of English, Foreign Languages and Cultural Studies and Jessica Fultz and Kirby Peddy of the Department of Social Work.

Here is a brief profile of each new faculty member.

  Continue reading

Did He Hear From His Mary?

By Joe Darby

I do not dabble in spiritualism. I am probably the opposite of what you would think of as “New Age.” I’ve never owned any crystals, a Ouija Board or a Tarot card deck. None of that is for me.

But I am fairly certain I heard the voice of my sweet wife, who as you know departed early this month. It could have been a hallucination but it really didn’t feel like it.

A few mornings ago I was sleeping — not dreaming — when I distinctly heard a voice say “Hey,” in an attention-getting but friendly way. It woke me up instantly and I looked down to see my dog Baby looking up at me, like she does when she wants to go out. Had Baby developed the ability to communicate with me. No. The voice sounded very much like Mary’s.

If this experience was real I suspect it was Mary’s way of letting me know she is okay and nearby. And also to tell me that I should get up and take care of the needs of our dog! If someone else had told me that this had happened to them, I’d probably be skeptical and believe it may have been some kind of dream. But when one experiences an event like this one’s self, that puts a whole new perspective on such things.

Another instance of departed souls apparently remaining near us was related to me by my daughter Becky, who sat next to me at Mary’s funeral. Becky later told me that she detected the strong presence of the distinctive perfume scent of my mom, Becky’s grandmother, who died 22 years ago. “Nonnie was definitely there with you, Daddy,” Becky said.

Here’s one more. If one person says they experienced a spiritual phenomenon, you could take it as you will, perhaps. But when two witness it simultaneously, it becomes a lot more credible. When my daughters Becky and Liz were young, we lived next door to their maternal grandparents. When Pawpaw C. grew ill, he would ring a little bell to let people know he needed something.

Not too long after he passed away, the girls were visiting Granny C. in her house. They suddenly looked at each other and said, at the same time, “Did you hear that?” Yes, they had both heard Pawpaw’s bell. And I think it may have happened once or twice more, also.

So, there you have my modest contributions to the probability of an afterlife. Such incidents can give us great comfort. They can also strengthen our belief in the existence of God. Some folks will remain doubtful, saying manifestations of signs from departed loved ones are imaginary or misinterpreted. I am now leaning very strongly the other way.