The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

December 26, 2013

2013 Year in Review

OTTUMWA — Here's part one of the year in review as taken from Courier headlines.

January

Gas prices dropped below $3 per gallon for the first time in a couple years. They would end the year below that mark as well.

Maria Valencialiono was the New Year’s Baby for Ottumwa.

The Iowa Department of Education said Ottumwa student numbers were up, reversing a long-term decline.

Ottumwa High School’s Victory Bell was stolen. The theft, thought to be related to scrap metal prices, has not yet been solved.

Volunteers put in work on getting some of Ottumwa’s public clocks working again, including the clock on Ottumwa High School.

Former Ottumwa Transit Authority director Pam Ward was indicted on federal charges related to her tenure. Her trial resulted in a hung jury, and prosecutors declined to pursue the case further.

The annual eagle watch in Ottumwa drew people downtown on a cold Saturday in hopes of spotting Ottumwa’s most popular winter visitors.

The 833rd Engineer Company was called up for service in Afghanistan. The announcement was made only a couple weeks before their third deployment in the past 12 years.

An Ottumwa police officer badly damaged a patrol car when he hit a garbage truck, sparking a community-wide discussion on how officers handle the vehicles.

Ottumwa Police Chief Jim Clark announced his retirement. Tom McAndrew, a longtime officer in the department, was selected as his successor.

Construction of Ottumwa’s new elementary school was on schedule, though officials had yet to pick a name for the building.

Oskaloosa and Fairfield were announced as overnight stops for RAGBRAI. The Fairfield stop eventually wound up in the Guinness Book of World Records.

Lightning was blamed for a house fire, the first of what would become a very busy year for Ottumwa firefighters. By year’s end, 40 structure fires took place within city limits.

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Local News
  • 0417 OTT Earth day color photo 1 -T -M Cargill celebrates Earth Day by educating ALBIA — In honor of Earth Day on Tuesday, April 22, employees from Cargill Eddyville and Cargill Pork are visiting with students at Grant Elementary and Lincoln Center in Albia all this week. On Wednesday the Courier caught up with them as they went

    April 16, 2014 3 Photos

  • 0417 OTT Saving Center color photo -T -L -M Hedrick building has friends HEDRICK — The community wants a civic center, and they've been willing to work for it. "I'd say we have 15 to 25 volunteers each time," Tommy Smith of Hedrick said. "These are all good people." Smith was volunteering his services at the Easter Brunch

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Southern Iowa farmers preparing for planting OTTUMWA — Even though the winter seemed to linger like Iowa was going through an ice age and cold and wet weather has highlighted the early spring, farmers are starting to get out to their fields to put down fertilizer and get fields ready for planti

    April 16, 2014

  • 0417 OTT Camp Wapello fence photo -T -M -L Good fence irritates good neighbor DRAKESVILLE — For 82 years, Camp Wapello’s iconic entryway has welcomed people to peacefully coexist with nature. Now there’s a 400-foot barbed wire fence down the middle of the road. In February, Davis County Supervisors approved vacating of portion

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Carrying bookbags a balancing act OTTUMWA — Permission slips. Notes from teachers. School activity announcements, birthday invitations, report cards and homework to sign. Kids bring home a lot of stuff. But is it done fairly? The school board this week was asked by ranking members of

    April 16, 2014

  • Van Buren supervisors deny hog confinement permit application KEOSAUQUA — A proposed swine building in Chequest Township didn’t receive a seal of approval from Van Buren County Board of Supervisors. Supervisors voted Monday to recommend to the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to deny the permit. Supervisor

    April 16, 2014

  • 0417 OTT Beth Howard bw cover -L -T -M 'Ms. American Pie' tours with her new book ELDON — With many hours and countless miles on her RV "The Beast," Eldon's pie lady, Beth Howard, is celebrating the release of her new book with a tour of southwestern states. Howard's second book, "Ms. American Pie: Buttery Good Pie Recipes and Bol

    April 16, 2014 2 Photos

  • Van Buren to share FFA with Harmony KEOSAUQUA — Van Buren Community School Board approved a recommendation from its administration to share the ag program with Harmony for the 2014-15 school year. The decision means that Van Buren students would travel to Harmony to receive ag instruct

    April 16, 2014

  • Attorney withdraws after client disappears OTTUMWA — Authorities are still looking for an Ottumwa man who didn’t show up for court proceedings. When they find him, he’ll need a new attorney. Jacob Nordyke faces charges of interference with official acts and possession of drug paraphernalia. H

    April 16, 2014

  • Waste Management wants to stay in Keosauqua KEOSAUQUA — Waste Management told the city of Keosauqua that it was not interested in ending the contract it has for solid waste and recycling services it provides to the city. A representative told the city mayor that it intends to fulfill the contr

    April 16, 2014

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