News


Russ Bushong
The drowning death last weekend of fisherman Mike Meidell, 52, of West Plains reminded some area residents of at least two previous tragedies that occurred when a solitary fisherman headed out in a boat on Norfork Lake – and didn’t come back. Russ Bushong Gainesville city council member Lana...

Times photo/Jessi Dreckman Ken Burnett, one of the Ozark County Sheriff’s Department dispatchers, manages informational and emergency calls, including all 911 calls in the county. In response to emergency calls, the dispatcher often “tones out” one or more of the county’s 14 volunteer fire departments, and those firefighters and first responders are frequently the first on scene, ahead of deputies and the Ozark County Ambulance. But many of those departments have fewer than 10 trained personnel on their rosters, and sometimes no one is available to respond. Most departments say more volunteers are urgently needed.
Editor’s note: Ozark County Times staff members Jessi Dreckman and Sue Ann Jones contacted all 14 volunteer fire departments that serve Ozark County to gather information about who they are, how they serve their communities and  what they need from the residents of their districts. This week’s...

Ozark County Sheriff’s deputies, volunteer firefighters and first responders and Missouri State Highway Patrol Water Division troopers descended on Norfork Lake at Udall Saturday evening to look for a West Plains fisherman who had launched his boat there Friday – and didn’t come back. Photo courtesy Todd Young
By water, land and air, in temperatures that sank into the single digits, a team of determined Ozark Countians and Missouri State Highway Patrol Water Division personnel searched Saturday, Sunday and Monday for Mike Meidell, 52, of West Plains, who launched his fishing boat Friday onto Norfork Lake...

Using a $10,000 donation from the Leroy and Ovia Marie McGinnis Fund in the Ozark Community Foundation with other grant funding that’s been applied for, Gainesville High School is “reutilizing” its current library into a learning lab / media center. This architectural rendering by Sapp Design shows how the traditional library space will be remodeled.
Gainesville R-V School District is not getting rid of its library, says superintendent Jeff Hyatt, responding to recent social media posts that made claims to the contrary. “We’re relocating and remodeling the current junior high / high school library to become a combination computer learning lab...

Bakersfield and Tecumseh VFDs responded to put out the fire of this 2006 Dodge Ram 2500 truck belonging to Bakersfield fire chief Greg Watts and wife Zaylor Feb. 20. The cause of the fire was electrical, a fire investigator found.
Bakersfield Volunteer Fire Department chief Greg Watts and wife Zaylor lost their 2006 Dodge Ram 2500 truck to a fire early Wednesday, Feb. 20. Zaylor told the Times she had started the truck around 7:30 that morning to let it warm up before going to the store with her daughters.  “I usually let it...

Mark Twin presenter Don Nicholson
The Ozark County Historium will welcome a very special guest at 10 a.m. Thursday, March 7, when none other than the venerable Mark Twain visits for a morning of stories and conversation. Missouri’s famous native son will talk about his views on life, characterized by his well-known wit and wisdom....
  Absentee voting for the April 2 general municipal election has begun. Registered voters in the Gainesville and Dora school districts, as well as a few Ava School District voters who live in Ozark County,  who are unable to go to the polls on Election Day should contact the Ozark County Clerk’...

Back-to-back district champs Members of the Class 1 District 3 champion Dora Falcons basketball team are, from left, (front row) manager Xavier Jewell, Dylan Martin, Mason Luna, Isaac Haney, Landon Luna, Evan Smith, Auston Luna, Robbie Luna, Trace Luna, manager Isaac Luna; (back row) assistant coach Joshua Strong, assistant coach Paxton Smith, Bo Collins, Cayden Peck, Colby Hoover, Waylon Masters, Korey Murphy, Bryson Luna, Jacob Freiman, Kyle Hambelton, head coach Rick Luna, manager Curtis Warren. Photo by Karla Smith
The Dora Falcons beat defending state champion Eminence Redwings 64-59 Friday, Feb. 23, to win the Class 1 District 3 championship. “I’m super proud of my team’s effort,” said Dora head coach Rick Luna. “Going up against the defending state champs was no easy task.” The win marks back-to-back...

The Lutie school board voted unanimously last week to transition to a four-day school week beginning with the 2019-2020 school year.
During its meeting Thursday night, Feb. 21, the Lutie R-VI Board of Education approved the district’s transition to a four-day school week beginning in August for the 2019-20 school year. The vote was unanimous in favor of altering the district’s schedule to fewer, but longer, days of instruction...

An Air Evac helicopter takes off from Haskins Ford Thursday morning about four hours after a vehicle carrying Ava-area residents Richard Corn, Casey Dawn Shelton and her six-month-old baby Chaseton floated off the crossing in high water about 6 a.m. The victims escaped from the car and then waited, too cold to walk for help. Area resident Dan Donley saw them while checking cattle about 9:30 a.m. and summoned help. Pictured, from left, Tracy Meal, Theodosia Area VFD; Gainesville VFD chief Ed Doiron; Dr. Aaron Newton with Ozark County Search and Rescue, and TAVFD EMS director Allen Edgington. Times photo / Amelia LaMair
Ava-area resident Casey Dawn Shelton says the Ozark County first responders who descended on Haskins Ford Thursday morning to rescue her and her baby, Chaseton, and her rooommate, Richard Corn, were “amazing and caring.” But she wants everyone to know that “God is the real hero. He made it all...

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Ozark County Times

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Gainesville, MO 65655

Phone: (417) 679-4641
Fax: (417) 679-3423

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