Northwestern State sets program record with eight perfect Academic Progress Rate scores

A record eight of Northwestern State’s 14 sports posted a perfect single-year Academic Progress Rate score as nearly every athletics team improved their multi-year score in metrics that measure student-athletes academic eligibility and retention.

Baseball, men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s cross country, women’s track, softball and tennis all logged marks of 1,000 during the 2019-20 academic year.

The eight perfect scores is an NSU best since the NCAA started collecting APR data in 2004-05. NSU has recorded six perfect scores twice and has had at least three teams with perfect scores in eight of the last nine years.

“Winning in the classroom continues to be a high priority for NSU Athletics as evidenced by the most recent NCAA APR report,” said NSU Director of Athletics Greg Burke. “Congratulations are in order to all NSU teams for continuing to score well on the annual APR report and especially to the eight programs which registered perfect scores.

“The collaborative effort of student-athletes, coaches, the academic and compliance staffs and our outstanding faculty contributed to another academic success story.”

All eight teams would have received public recognition from the NCAA, which typically recognizes teams in the top 10 percent of their respective sports, but the organization isn’t publishing nationwide APR data because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The banner APR year pushes NSU’s multi-year scores (four-year rolling averages) to impressive levels.

Eight programs have a multi-year score of at least 975, including men’s cross country (1,000), softball (992), women’s track (991), baseball (988), women’s cross country (988), women’s basketball (986), volleyball (979) and men’s basketball (976).

Men’s cross country accumulated its 10th perfect score in program history and has a streak of six consecutive perfect marks.

The APR provides a real-time look at a team’s academic success each semester by tracking the progress of each student-athlete on scholarship. The APR accounts for eligibility and retention and provides a measure of each Division I team’s performance compared to peers.

Since the APR’s creation in 2003, NSU is among a relatively small group of institutions that have never received public warnings or penalties for any sport falling below the benchmark score, initially 925, now 930.

PHOTO: Chris Reich/NSU Photographic Services


Remember This?: The Last Request

By Brad Dison

On Wednesday, June 19, 1957, workers drilled, moved and crushed the earth at the Rattlesnake Uranium Pit Mine, 37 miles north of Monticello, Utah. 46-year-old James W. Rodgers normally worked outside the open pit mine and had only been moved inside the mine that very day to help in drilling operations. 33-year-old Charles “Chuck” Merrifield operated a power shovel, a bucket-equipped machine used for excavating earth or fragmented rock. June 19 was the first day that James and Chuck worked together.

At about 3:30 p.m., Dee Gardner, a truck driver at the mine, saw James walk from the pit to the red pickup truck assigned to James for working in the mine. The truck was owned by the mining company and painted a high-visibility red for safety. James told Dee and other workers nearby, “I guess I’m going to have to kill him (Chuck) before I leave this job.” James retrieved a .38 caliber revolver from the truck and headed back into the pit. James walked back past Dee and toward Chuck’s power shovel. Another mine worker told Dee, “I guess Rodgers is going to scare Chuck with a gun.”

At the power shovel, James motioned for Chuck to get off of the machine. Chuck stood up, put one foot down out of the cab, and James began firing his pistol. The first shot was not aimed at Chuck and hit the ground. A split second later, James aimed the pistol at Chuck and fired until the revolver was empty, with each shot taking effect. Chuck fell to the ground. Dee was afraid to move because he “felt Rodgers didn’t like [him] either.” James turned to Dee and other witnesses and said, “Well, I guess that takes care of that.” James put the pistol back in his belt and walked toward the pickup truck. He passed another mine worker as he neared his truck. James calmly told him, “Well, he asked for it and he got it.” James got into the pickup truck and drove away. Chuck died within a few short minutes.

Law enforcement officers in Utah set up roadblocks on the main roads in the area but James had taken a back road into Colorado. Utah law enforcement officers notified Colorado police near the Utah line of the shooting and told them to be on the lookout for the bright red mine truck. A policeman near Cortez, Colorado, about 100 miles east of the mine, recognized the vehicle immediately and initiated a traffic stop. The officer told James that a lot of policemen were looking for him, to which he replied, “Yes, I guess you are.” The officer arrested James without incident. He was armed with a .22 caliber rifle and the .38 caliber pistol he used in the shooting. James reassured officers that he “wasn’t going to shoot anybody else.” While in custody, James eagerly confessed to killing Chuck.

When questioned about the shooting, James told reporters, “I can’t tell you why I did it. He’d been getting on my nerves for some time and I knew it was going to lead to serious trouble… But I just can’t explain why I did it. He came at me one time with a wrench in his hand and I thought he was going to hit me. He didn’t, but I felt he didn’t like me and he kept on needling me. Not anything in particular, but all the time. I just couldn’t take any more of it. But I can’t tell you why I shot him.”

In court, James pled not guilty by reason of insanity. His attorneys argued that James was suffering from Syphilis which impaired his mental processes. The disease, his attorneys argued, had deteriorated his brain, which affected his thinking and reasoning capabilities. After two trials and a host of appeals, James was ultimately found guilty and sentenced to death by firing squad.

In the early morning hours on March 30, 1960, Sheriff Seth Wright and prison warden John Turner sat with James and waited for daylight, the time of his execution. The sheriff held a black hood that would be put over James’s head during the execution. James looked at the hood and asked the sheriff, “What you got there?” Sheriff Wright replied, “something to keep you warm.” “Don’t worry,” James answered, “I’ll be where it’s warm pretty quick.” When it was time to go to the prison field, Sheriff Wright asked if he was ready. James quipped, “Yes, give me an hour’s head start.” Just before the five riflemen “blasted him into eternity,” Sheriff Wright asked James if he had a last request. “Sure,” James replied, “how about a bullet-proof suit?” His request was denied.

Sources:
1. The San Juan Record (Monticello, Utah), June 20, 1957, p.1.
2. The San Juan Record, December 12, 1957, p.1.
3. Deseret News (Salt Lake City, Utah), December 9, 1958, p.21.
4. The Ogden Standard-Examiner (Ogden, Utah), March 30, 196


WATER MAIN LEAK-PAYNE SUBDIVISION

The City of Natchitoches would like to notify the public of a Water Main Leak in the Payne Subdivision. Residents in this area may experience low water pressure.

Repairs to the leak will be made Wednesday morning (7/28/2021). Crews are gathering material and equipment now.

Updates will be posted tomorrow morning as repairs get underway.

For further information or questions regarding the Water Main Leak, please contact the Utility Department at (318)357-3850.


Podcast: Marcus Jones joins Billy West LIVE

PART ONE
Marcus Jones joins Billy West Live and discusses his Interim Appointment as President of Northwestern State University.

The interview includes Marcus’ educational background and experiences teaching and in administration of higher education.

Marcus answers questions about his vision for the immediate future of NSU and increasing on-campus enrollment for Students in Natchitoches.

PART TWO

Marcus Jones answers questions related to his commitment to higher education in general and specifically related to keeping NSU competitive in Division 1 Athletics, especially football.

Marcus also discusses the position of permanent President of NSU and whether or not he will be a candidate for that position. Marcus also discusses his views on whether a terminal degree is necessary or required to be the permanent President of NSU.


Notice of Death – July 27, 2021

NATCHITOCHES:
Andrew Wesley (Lil’ Andy) Daniels
September 20, 2011 – July 24, 2021
Service: Sunday, August 1 at 1 pm at Blanchard-St. Denis Funeral Home

Bruce Clark
July 26, 2021
Arrangements TBA

Otis Lil’ Bug James Williams
October 01, 1984 – July 23, 2021
Service: Saturday, July 31 at 2 pm in the Winnfield Memorial Funeral Home Chapel

Juanita Virece
April 18, 1967 – July 25, 2021
Service: Saturday, July 31 at 11 am in the Winnfield Memorial Funeral Home Chapel

Alice Lovick
July 21, 2021
Service: Wednesday, July 28 at 3 pm in the New Light Baptist Church Cemetery of Marthaville

Sam Telsee
July 22, 2021
Arrangements TBA

Cynthia D. French
May 15, 1958 – July 05, 2021
Arrangements TBA

SABINE:
Houston Lane Randolph
July 25, 2021 – July 25, 2021
Service: Wednesday, July 28 at 2 pm at Noble Cemetery

Ken Busby
November 18, 1940 – July 25, 2021
Service: Friday, July 30 at 11 am at Little Flock Baptist Church, located at 1805 Little Flock Road in Many

Maurice Malmay
February 28, 1939 – July 25, 2021
Service: Wednesday, July 28 at 10 am at St. Joseph Catholic Church

WINN:
Tracey Thomisee
February 22, 1998 – July 18, 2021
Service: Wednesday, July 28 at 10 am at Montgomery United Pentecostal Church


City Council recognizes NSU Purple Pizzazz Pom Line, NSU Cheer at brief Monday night meeting

The Natchitoches City Council recognized Northwestern State University’s Purple Pizzazz Pom Line and NSU Cheer at a brief meeting on July 26. The special recognition was for NSU Cheer winning first place for its Time Out Routine and the Purple Pizzazz Pom Line for winning first place in the Division I Home Routine at the Universal Dance Association Camp.

Agenda items included:

ORDINANCES – INTRODUCTION:
Execute A Lease In Favor Of The Louisiana Agricultural Finance Agency, Of That Property Located In The Natchitoches Regional Airport, Described As Lot 10, And Further Providing For Advertising Of The Lease And An Effective Date.
Amend The 2021-2022 Budget To Reflect Additional Revenues And Expenditures

RESOLUTIONS:

Approve The Assignment Or Sublease Of A Lease Agreement Of Lot 39 In The Natchitoches Regional Airport From Etiole Patrimony, L.L.C. To Nor-Wes, Inc., Including An Authorization Of The Mayor To Execute An Instrument Approving The Assignment Of The Lease.

Advertise And Accept Bids For A Forklift/Telehandler For The Purchasing Warehouse (BID NO. 0638), A 47’ Sheave Height Digger Truck For The Utility Department (BID NO. 0639), And A Pulse Closing Transfer Switches (BID NO. 0640).
Approve That Instrument Titled Memorandum OF Understanding (The “Agreement”) Between The City Of Natchitoches And JBL Communication, LLC DBA V1Fiber, Which Agreement Provides For An Understanding Between The Parties On Matters Concerning Cooperation In Locating And/Or Potentially Obtaining Capital Funding For Various Telecommunication Projects; Prescribing Terms and Conditions For Said Agreement, And Authorizing The Mayor To Execute Same.

ANNOUNCEMENTS:

The next scheduled City Council meeting will be Monday, August 9, 2021.


The River Blackout Bingo – Jackpot Starts at $225.00 Tuesday morning

Join Trini & Ashley LIVE for  River Blackout Bingo!   Your chance to win begins at 7 am on 94.9 The River.

JACKPOT STARTS: $225.00

To obtain your Virtual Bingo Card:   just TEXT the following on Tuesday morning at 7:00am:

TEXT “riverbingo” (all one word) to 21000

You will receive a notice and a link.  Just click the link to obtain your River Blackout Bingo Card!

Trini & Ashley will start call the numbers starting at 7:15am.

If you have a Blackout Bingo, be the first caller to the River Lines: 318-581-4025.

The first Blackout Bingo to call and verify their card as a winning card wins the jackpot!


Utility work will cause lane closures on July 27 on University Parkway – TODAY

The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) advises motorists that beginning on Tuesday, July 27, 2021, there will be lane closures on LA 6 Business (University Parkway) in the City of Natchitoches.

These lane closures are scheduled to begin at approximately 7:00 a.m. on July 27th and reopen at approximately 5:00 p.m. on July 28th.

These lane closures are necessary to allow for utility work, and will require a detour for thru traffic. Detour information is as follows:

Permit/Detour section:

1) West Bound Lane Between Behan Street & MLK Drive
Detour North onto Caspari Street and proceed West onto Bossier Street and proceed South onto MLK Drive and back to LA 6 Business (University Parkway)

2) West Bound Lane Between 2nd Street & Boyd Street
Detour North onto 2nd Street and proceed West onto Bossier Street and proceed South onto Boyd Street and back to LA 6 Business (University Parkway)

3) Detour for Large Trucks for these Lane Closures with Detours
a) Large Trucks heading North Bound on LA 1 must take the LA 1 Bypass to LA 6 Business intersection
b) Large Trucks heading South Bound on Jefferson Street must take LA 1223 (Mills Street) to LA 1 then proceed to LA 1 Bypass to intersection of LA 1 and LA 6

This work will be performed WEATHER PERMITTING.

Safety Reminder:

DOTD appreciates your patience and reminds you to please drive with caution through the construction site and be on the lookout for work crews and their equipment.

Area residents should exercise caution when driving, walking, or biking near an active construction zone.

Additional information:

Call 511, visit http://www.511la.org, or download the Louisiana 511 mobile app for additional information. Out-of-state travelers may call I-888-ROAD-511 (1-888-762-3511).


Opportunity: School Secretary

JOB VACANCIES: School Secretary

QUALIFICATIONS: High School Diploma or equivalent, Associate or Bachelor’s Degree preferred, excellent
communication skills, and proficiency in computer skills.

SALARY: According to Parish Salary Schedule

TERMS OF EMPLOYMENT: 10 months

WHERE TO APPLY:
Linda Page, Personnel Director
Natchitoches Parish School Board
P. O. Box 16
Natchitoches, LA 71458-0016
(318) 352-2358

DEADLINE: Tuesday, July 27, 2021, 3:00 p.m.

APPLICATIONS: Application packet should consist of a letter of application, resume’, and two letters of reference.


NSU Alumni Association will host gathering at Cane River Brewing

The Northwestern State University Alumni Association will host an After Hours event at Cane River Brewing on Thursday, Aug. 5. The gathering will take place from 6-7:30 p.m. for all NSU alumni, supporters and friends.

Those who would like to attend should RSVP to alumni@nsula.edu to ensure an accurate headcount for food. There is no charge to attend.

NSU Trivia will begin at 7:30 p.m. following the After Hours event.


Introductory course on FB to be offered

Northwestern State University’s Office of Electronic and Continuing Education will offer a course “Developing Social Media Skills in FB” on Saturday, July 31 and August 7 from 10 a.m. until noon in the second floor classroom in South Hall. The fee is $55.

The introductory social media course will teach participants how to streamline your account for your specific needs, create content, interact with posted content and more.

For more information or to register for classes call (800) 376-2422 or (318) 357-6355.


NSU will offer Notary Prep course

Northwestern State University’s Office of Electronic and Continuing Education will offer a Notary Public Exam Prep Course starting Tuesday, August 24. Class time is 6:30 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday until December 2. The early bird fee is $430 until August 18 is and $450 after that date.

In partnership with Louisiana State University-Shreveport, this 52-hour course is an introduction to notary public fundamentals. The instructor, attorney and notary Jennifer Brown, distributes significate course study guides and materials to assist in your preparation for the exam. This course will be delivered via online video conferencing. The instructor will provide you with a conferencing link to join the class once enrolled.

Requirements for the course are that participants must have broadband access, a camera and sound. The test is based on the Louisiana Secretary of State’s newest edition of “The Fundamentals of Louisiana Notarial Law and Practice,” only available at www.sos.la.gov or by calling (225) 922-0507 for further information. You must have this book on the first day of class.

Visit the Louisiana Secretary of State’s Website’s Notary and Certifications for qualifications at www.sos.la.gov or call (225) 922-0507. In order to take the Louisiana State Notary Exam, students must be Louisiana residents and registered to vote in Louisiana.

For more information or to register for classes, go to checkout.nsula.edu or call (800) 376-2422 or (318) 357-6355.


Notice of Death – July 26, 2021

NATCHITOCHES:
Bruce Clark
July 26, 2021
Arrangements TBA

Otis Lil’ Bug James Williams
October 01, 1984 – July 23, 2021
Arrangements TBA

Shirley Ann Grappe Eiland
June 22, 1943 – July 23, 2021
Service: Tuesday, July 27 at 3 pm in the chapel of Blanchard-St. Denis Funeral Home

Juanita Virece
April 18, 1967 – July 25, 2021
Service: Saturday, July 31 at 11 am in the Winnfield Memorial Funeral Home Chapel

Alice Lovick
July 21, 2021
Service: Wednesday, July 28 at 3 pm in the New Light Baptist Church Cemetery of Marthaville

Sam Telsee
July 22, 2021
Arrangements TBA

Cynthia D. French
May 15, 1958 – July 05, 2021
Arrangements TBA

SABINE:
Maurice Malmay
February 28, 1939 – July 25, 2021
Service: Wednesday, July 28 at 10 am at St. Joseph Catholic Church

WINN:
Tracey Thomisee
February 22, 1998 – July 18, 2021
Service: Wednesday, July 28 at 10 am at Montgomery United Pentecostal Church


McAlister’s Deli is OPEN!

McAlister’s Deli® opened its doors in Natchitoches today, July 26,  at 10 a.m. Known for its genuine hospitality, McAlister’s Deli is home to handcrafted sandwiches, always-fresh salads, giant stuffed spuds, and McAlister’s Deli Famous Sweet Tea™.   

“We are excited to open our new McAlister’s Deli location in the town of Natchitoches,” said Todd Darst, Area Director. “We look forward to welcoming the local community into our restaurant and sharing our table together!”

McAlister’s Natchitoches offers a variety of ways for guests to dine. Guests can dine-in, delivery, a pick up station inside the restaurant, and a pickup window— where guests place their order online and drive thru to pick up their order to provide an even quicker dining experience.

The Natchitoches restaurant will be open daily from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. For more information, please call the restaurant at 318-581-4011, or visit us on the McAlister’s Deli – Natchitoches Facebook page.

McAlister’s guests always have the opportunity to skip the line by placing their order through the McAlister’s app and rewards program or online at www.mcalistersdeli.com and can conveniently pick up their order to go or select delivery. Download the app and sign up today for a free tea! Select McAlister’s locations now offer Tableside ordering on premise where guests can order their meals from the comfort of their table.

McAlister’s also offers a variety of fresh, made-to-order catering options including breakfast, snacks, spud bars, salads, sandwich trays, box lunches and desserts, and always comes with a side of genuine hospitality. Whether it’s for one person or one hundred, a business meeting or a family reunion, they can cater a feast to please any crowd.   


City Council Meeting Tonight – 5:30 LIVE

Natchitoches City Council will have a pre-council meeting beginning at 5:00 p.m. and ending at 5:30 p.m. to discuss non-agenda items. The City Council meeting will begin promptly at 5:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Monday of each month and will be reserved to only items on the Agenda. The public is invited to both the pre-council meetings and council meetings with the understanding that items not on the agenda will not be discussed at the scheduled council meetings, but the public is welcome to discuss any topic at the pre-council meetings. The City Council Meetings are held at the Natchitoches City Council Chambers located at 716 Second Street, Natchitoches, Louisiana.

Any Citizen that wishes to observe the City Council meeting live may do so at:

https://www.facebook.com/NPJNatLa

NATCHITOCHES CITY COUNCIL MEETING
JULY 26, 2021, 5:30 P.M.

A G E N D A

1. CALL TO ORDER

2. INVOCATION

3. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

4. READING AND APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF JULY 12, 2021

5. SPECIAL RECOGNITION: NSU’s Purple Pizzazz Pom Line and NSU Cheer

6. ORDINANCES – INTRODUCTION:
#042 Petite Ordinance Authorizing The Mayor Of The City Of Natchitoches, Ronnie Williams, To Execute A Lease In Favor Of The Louisiana Agricultural Finance Agency, Of That Property Located In The Natchitoches Regional Airport, Described As Lot 10, And Further Providing For Advertising Of The Lease And An Effective Date.

#043 Elie Ordinance Amending The 2021-2022 Budget To Reflect Additional
Revenues And Expenditures

7. RESOLUTIONS:
#056 Harrington Resolution Approving The Assignment Or Sublease Of A Lease Agreement Of Lot 39 In The Natchitoches Regional Airport From Etiole Patrimony, L.L.C. To Nor-Wes, Inc., Including An Authorization Of The Mayor To Execute An Instrument Approving The Assignment Of The Lease.

#057 Elie Resolution Authorizing The Mayor To Advertise And Accept Bids
For A Forklift/Telehandler For The Purchasing Warehouse
(BID NO. 0638)

#058 Nielsen Resolution Authorizing The Mayor To Advertise And Accept Bids For A 47’ Sheave Height Digger Truck For The Utility Department (BID NO. 0639)

#059 Petite Resolution Authorizing The Mayor to Advertise And Accept Bids For Pulse Closing Transfer Switches (BID NO. 0640)

#060 Harrington Resolution Authorizing The Mayor to Advertise And Accept Bids For The Renovation Of The Texas and Pacific Railroad Depot (BID NO. 0627)

#061 Nielsen Resolution Approving That Instrument Titled Memorandum OF Understanding (The “Agreement”) Between The City Of Natchitoches And JBL Communication, LLC DBA V1Fiber, Which Agreement Provides For An Understanding Between The Parties On Matters Concerning Cooperation In Locating And/Or Potentially Obtaining Capital Funding For Various Telecommunication Projects; Prescribing Terms and Conditions For Said Agreement, And Authorizing The Mayor To Execute Same.

8. ANNOUNCEMENTS:
The next scheduled City Council meeting will be Monday, August 9, 2021.

9. ADJOURNMENT:

NOTICE TO THE PUBLIC
In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, if you need special assistance, please contact the City Clerk’s Office at (318) 352-2772 describing the assistance that is necessary. If you wish to address the Council, please complete the “Request to Address City Council” form located on the entrance table.


C & J’s Expo Promotes Small Businesses

Over 25 small businesses from throughout the area gathered at the LSHOF and NW Louisiana History Museum to showcase their wares and services and to promote entrepreneurship Saturday, July 24. The C & J’s Expo was the idea of spicemaker and caterer Edna Mae Love and Stationer Uniquely JD Industries. Those two businesses, and Coushatta’s American Bank and Trust, sponsored the event.

The Expo was opened with a prayer by Natchitoches Mayor Ronnie Williams, Jr. The businesses ran the gamut from savory spices and food trucks to spas and beauty products. A steady stream of attendees browsed the booths and enjoyed music from a DJ. Launch Network was on hand with information on their services for assisting in starting and running a business.

The initial Expo was quite a success, and the Natchitoches Parish Journal commends all of the men and women who came to showcase their dreams and hard work. As the sign to the Expo said: “There is nothing more exciting than being your own boss.”