UP: To Kenzy Reese Biddle, daughter of Heather and Jesse Biddle, of Waverly, and the first baby born in the Mid-Ohio Valley. Kenzy was born at Camden Clark Medical Center at around 1:45 p.m. New Year's.
UP: To the volunteers and the business donations that made it possible to renovate the atrium at Blennerhassett Middle School. The atrium, which sits in the center of the school, is 35 years old and was badly deteriorating. Efforts to renovate the area picked up in 2011, spearheaded by $3,000 worth of materials donated by the school's business partner Home Depot. Congratulations to all of the people participating in this worthy project.
UP: To Ohio State Highway Patrol Trooper Timothy M. Gossett who was honored Jan. 5 for his action in helping an impaired driver escape a burning car. On Dec. 6, Gossett was dispatched from the Marietta Post to a one-vehicle accident on Ohio 550. When he arrived he found a vehicle on fire and stuck in the mud, with the vehicle's occupants intoxicated. He ordered the men out, but one was unresponsive and didn't realize the car was on fire. Gossett then pulled the man from the vehicle to safety. During his recognition ceremony, a humble Gossett noted he did what firefighters do everyday. That is true, but by doing his job, Gossett saved a man's life. He certainly is deserving of this recognition.
UP: To a bill proposed by Delegate Gary Howell, R-Mineral, which would make it a felony to disrupt emergency communications by stealing or attempting to steal line. The bill is intended to beef up punishment for people who steal fiber optic cable thinking it is copper wire. These brazen thefts have caused major damage and have shut down emergency communication, putting lives in danger. Many law enforcement agencies in the state - including those in the Mid-Ohio Valley - support this bill. Hopefully, beefing up penalties for this ever-increasing crime may help to deter it somewhat.