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The Fort Scott Tribune FORT SCOTT, KANSAS 66701, SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 23, 2013
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Inside Today Sports — Fort Scott Community College baseball sophomores sign with four-year schools for 2014. See Page 8.
What reason do you have to smile today? “More blessings than I can count.” Deb Halsey, Fort Scott
Free bingo at Buck Run Community Center
Brent Bollinger gets life sentence By Jason E. Silvers
The Fort Scott Tribune Bourbon County District Judge Mark Ward handed sentences down Friday morning to Brent Bollinger, who was found guilty by a jury in September of first degree murder, aggravated arson and aggravated endangerment of a child. Attorneys representing both sides of the case and several family members of the defendant and victim attended the sentencing hearing for Bollinger in Bourbon County District Court. A two-week trial in the case of Bollinger, who was involved in a house fire on Grant Road on Oct. 13, 2011, that left his wife, Brenna, dead and his then 2-year-old son, Bryson, badly burned, ended Sept. 18. Bollinger also suffered severe burns in the fire.
Brent Bollinger For the count of felony murder, Bollinger received a sentence of life in prison in the Kansas Department of Corrections with the stipulation that he will not be eligible to go before a parole board for at least 20 years. Bollinger also received a sentence of 61 months in the KDOC for the count of aggravated arson and a 7-month sentence in the KDOC for the count of child endangerment. He is eligible to receive credit
for good behavior for the counts of arson and child endangerment, but not the murder count. Bollinger was also ordered by Ward to pay $6,253 in restitution costs to the victim’s family. Ward ruled the sentences are to run consecutively. He also said the case was given a domestic violence designation. “This case divided up much of the community,” Ward said at the conclusion of the hearing. “Now it’s time for the healing process to begin.” Attorneys representing the state recommended the maximum possible sentences under state law for the aggravated offenses. Three members of Brenna Bollinger’s family, including her mother, Ganette Davidson, and stepfather, Kevin Davidson, as well as her grandmother,
Karen Stewart, made comments to the judge prior to sentencing and also urged the judge to hand down the maximum sentences for Bollinger. Bollinger had no comments when Ward told him of his opportunity to speak during the hearing. “This is a horrible tragedy at the hands of one person,” Kevin Davidson said. “He took a life, and injured and disfigured another human for the rest of his life. There’s a 4-yearold boy who will never heal from the actions of the defendant. Our daughter is never coming back. Anything less than the maximum sentence … makes no sense to our family.” As Ganette Davidson was too emotional to speak before the judge, a letter she had prepared for the judge was read during the proceeding. The letter
“Keeping all the balls in the air; when you become the caregiver,” a Hospice 101 presentation, is from 7 to 8 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 27 at the Xavier Room, lower level of Mercy Hospital Fort Scott. Breakfast will be provided. The facilitator is Marci Williams, Mercy Home Health and Hospice Community Liaison. For more information, call (620) 2238090 or visit mercy.net/ fortscott.
PAGE INDEX Daily Record.............Page 2 Calendar....................Page 3 Op/Ed........................Page 4 Comics......................Page 5 Classifieds........... Pages 6, 7 Dear Abby.................Page 7 Sports............Pages 8, 9, 10 Linderhof................Page 12
129TH YEAR - NO. 228
See SENTENCING on page 12
The top of the Milrose Block building on Wall Street in downtown Fort Scott is lit. Soon the Historic Downtown area will be decorated for the holidays. The holiday season kicks off in Fort Scott on Dec. 3 with several activities, including the annual parade at 6 p.m.. Applications for parade entries are due by Nov. 27 at the Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce Office. For more information, contact the Chamber at 223-3566. Other activities include lighting of the Mayor’s Christmas Tree.
Preschool screening appointments accepted
Hospice 101 is Wednesday
talked about the affects of the crimes on the victims – Brenna and Bryson Bollinger. “Brent should pay for what he has done,” she said in the letter. “Brent can still have a life, even though he’s locked up. His loved ones can hear his voice … they can still see their child
Lighting the Block
There is a free community bingo game from 9 to 10 a.m. on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month at Buck Run Community Center. Staff will provide the bingo cards, the caller and the coffee. Prizes are provided by the Fort Scott Recreation Commission.
USD 234 will be holding preschool screenings for children up to five years of age on Friday, Dec. 6. Children may have: vision, hearing, speech and communication, motor skills, socialization skills, and general development screened. The screenings will take place at Fort Scott Preschool Center, 409 S. Judson St, Fort Scott, Kan., 66701. Appointments can be scheduled Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., by contacting Darlina Harris at (620) 223-8965. The deadline for scheduling an appointment is Tuesday, Nov. 26. The purpose of the screenings is to locate and iden-
Tammy Helm/Tribune photo
Replacing the old boiler is just going to have to wait, say commissioners By Tammy Helm
Tribune Managing Editor The Bourbon County Commissioners voted on Friday to make repairs to the 35-year-old boiler in the Bourbon County Courthouse instead of replacing it with a new system. Maintenance Supervisor David Neville presented the commissioners with estimates he received from Design Mechanical Inc., of Kansas City, Kan., which
hired an engineer to inspect the boiler and provide an estimate for a replacement. “It is rather costly, but there is a lot to be done,” Neville said. The estimate for replacing a leaking section of the boiler is $12,000. Replacing all 14 sections is estimated at $40,000. Replacing the entire boiler has been estimated at $197,000. Neville explained the pros and cons of each option. Besides having a boiler that would be up-to-
date with current codes, by replacing the entire boiler, there is a potential savings of 40 to 60 percent in the county’s gas bills, according to the statement from Design Mechanical. “There’s no guarantee,” Neville said. “But that would bring it up to code and when it comes time when we have to change our hot water tanks out, they could be updated to the code and those would also be in and out on a second vent, but that is included
in this price. But it’s rather extensive to bring it up to code.” Later in the discussion, County Clerk Kendall Mason said the county has spent $12,000 in gas bills since January heating the courthouse and correction center. “There’s no doubt you’ll save, but to what extent, I don’t know,” Neville said. With the boiler issue arising in October, after the county’s 2014 budget was set, cost is the downside of
a total replacement. Neville said making repairs would be cheaper, but there is no guarantee that repairing one section might cause another section to break. “It could be a domino effect, and it could not,” Neville said. “It’s something that will have to be addressed in the future, as far as meeting codes.” At this point, the counSee BOILER on page 11
Many remember where they were on that fateful day Friday marked the 50th anniversary of the day John F. Kennedy was shot as his motorcade passed through Dealy Plaza in Dallas, Texas. Kennedy was riding in a convertible with its top down with his wife, Jacqueline, and Texas Governor John Connally and his wife, Nellie. Kennedy was rushed to Parkland Hospital where
he died. Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested and charged as the lone shooter. Two days later as police led Oswald from the Dallas Police Headquarter to transfer him to the Dallas County Jail, Oswald was shot by Jack Ruby. While many theories as to whether Oswald acted alone in the assassination continue to raise debate, Kennedy’s death also has become a date in history which people of a certain
age remember in detail. Several in Fort Scott shared their memory of where they were when they learned JFK had been assassinated. Troy White, Fort Scott I was in Air Force tech school in Aurora, Colo. We went out in the drill field. And they announced it was then he had been killed. Allen Warren, Fort Scott I was going to school at Allen County Commu-
nity College in Iola. I was shocked. And then I remember seeing (Lee Harvey) Oswalt shot, I was watching live TV. Chuck Fischer, Fort Scott I was in the service (Air Force) in Germany, I was sitting in the NCO (non-commissioned officer) Club drinking beer. I was in a little disbelief, I really didn’t believe it would happen. I was surprised. Carla Sheets, Pittsburg
I was a senior at College High in Pittsburg. I was in Algebra class, and it was right after lunch time. We had an instructor who was young, and I remember he came out of the office and all of us were sitting there, and you could tell obviously he had been crying. We were just stunned a teacher had been crying. People just couldn’t believe that it happened then. Being that age
By Matthew Resnick
The Fort Scott Tribune
© 2013 Rust Communications
See JFK on page 12
Page 12 • Saturday, November 23, 2013
The Fort Scott Tribune • Fort Scott, Kan.
After Thanksgiving Luncheon Leftover Turkey Salad Herbed Hot Rolls Cranberry Crumb Tart
Martha Meinsen Scott Photo
Left Top to bottom: The Spode blue and white turkey plates.; Holiday turkey soup.; A turkey sandwich, a Thanksgiving evening tradition.; A slice of cranberry crumb tart. Above: Leftover turkey salad.
Holiday leftovers Thanksgiving is fast approaching. It’s the family holiday. It’s the feast holiday. It’s the “beginning of the Christmas season” holiday. And it’s a day of traditions. What food is served and when. What games are watched. The Macy’s Parade which keep the children entertained while turkey is roasted and side dishes prepared. Each family’s Thanksgiving meal may start with turkey and dressing but from there it is family tradition as to whether there are white potatoes, mashed or sweet potatoes (usually in casserole form) or both,
Lines from Linderhof Martha Meinsen Scott vegetables or vegetable casseroles, salads, rolls and cranberries (from sauce, to jellied to salad). Thanksgiving at Linderhof had it’s roots in my childhood (although early on, I took the oysters out of the dressing) with mashed potatoes, green beans, hot rolls of some sort (we were never purists about homemade – mother served brown and serve, for she was not a yeast baker), real cranberry sauce, and a relish tray of little sweet pickles and black and green olives. Husband Jim brought to the table the pimento and cream cheese stuffed celery and the addition of canned cranberry sauce. In my childhood, pie was always pumpkin and only pumpkin with freshly whipped cream but as long as his mother celebrated Thanksgiving with us, she always made the pies. “Granny” Smith pies
Sentencing Continued from Page 1
every week for the rest of his life. All we have are photos, videos and memories.” Davidson continued in the letter by saying she could not believe how Bollinger had “showed no remorse or accountability for his actions.” “He covered up everything he did,” she said in the letter. “He never mentioned Bryson in the two 911 calls. Brent knows what he did. He only cared for himself, as usual.” She also added, “Brent will stand in front of God one day” and urged the judge to “make him feel the pain my daughter felt.” Stewart, also emotional and teary while standing before the judge, made eye contact with Bollinger while she spoke. She said she did not know how someone “could do this to another person, especially Brenna, who still loved you.” “You don’t know the pain you have caused my family,” she said. Stewart added, “This pain will never go away. She meant a lot to me.” “I have to go through the holidays without Brenna,” she said, adding she also had the difficult task of telling her grandchildren that their mother is “not coming
we called them and besides the pumpkin she always brought at least one other kind – usually coconut cream because that was my favorite. When she passed away a few years ago, the one thing that I wanted of hers was those well used pie tins! Then there is the rest of the turkey to be dealt with. Turkey sandwiches on Thanksgiving night. Always eaten with a tall glass of cold milk. Turkey made into casseroles, eaten with noodles, chunks for salads until finally all that is left are the bones. Those bones go into the soup pot and make the best soup ever! A new salad I made last year that proved a winner and one that I will make again this year is Leftover Turkey Salad. It tastes a lot like Thanksgiving Day and is a nice change from the casseroles that we usually put the leftover turkey in. In fact, it was so good that I have served it this November as a luncheon dish for company. On my Spode turkey plates, of course! A cranberry crumb tart makes a good dessert and is a nice change from pumpkin pie. LEFTOVER TURKEY SALAD 3 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes 1 T. olive oil back.” “I don’t think he (Bollinger) can ever be cured,” she said. Prior to sentencing, Ward said the court had reviewed the pre-sentence investigation reports and also impact statements made by family members. Attorneys on both sides of the case said they also reviewed the PSI and the defendant’s criminal history and had no objections. Ward said the criminal history check indicated that Bollinger had one prior conviction, a misdemeanor. Paul Morrison, Bollinger’s attorney, also had a chance to issue comments on behalf of the defendant prior to sentencing and called the case “a horrible tragedy.” “My client is disfigured and physically disabled, not to mention the scarring,” of which he said would last a lifetime. “He’s lost the use of one leg below the calf. And his family suffers as well.” Morrison said his client was taken into custody at the age of 25 and has “given up his youth as a result of this conviction.” Morrison told the judge he has tried or been involved in more than 50 homicide cases and it is rare that the defendants in such cases are granted parole. He said Bollinger would “at the earliest be in his 50s” if and when he is allowed an early release from prison.
salt and pepper to taste 3 cups cooked turkey, cubed 1 red onion, chopped 2 ribs of celery, thinly sliced 1/3 c. dried cranberries Preheat oven to 350. In a medium bowl, toss cubed sweet potatoes with olive oil and season lightly with salt and pepper. Place sweet potatoes on baking sheet and bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until potatoes are golden brown and tender when pierced with a fork. Put turkey, onion, celery, sweet potatoes and cranberries in a bowl. Toss with dressing. Serve on a bed of lettuce. NOTE: sage in the added about of chopped salad.
I had fresh garden and a tablespoon sage to the
Dressing: 1/3 cup olive oil 1/4 c. cranberry sauce (leftover or canned whole berry) 2 T. raspberry vinegar (or more to taste) 1 1/2 t. Dijon In a small bowl, whisk together all ingredients. Pour into a Mason jar. Drizzle dressing over salad and toss to coat all the salad.
Attempts to reach members of Brent Bollinger’s family for comment were unsuccessful. Bollinger will remain in the custody of the county until he is transferred to the KDOC. As of Friday, Bollinger has served 665 days in the Southeast Kansas Regional Correctional Center. He was arrested and booked on charges in January 2012.
JFK Continued from Page 1
and young, you thought, “Oh my gosh, what’s happening to our country? I don’t believe it happened here.” Phil Hammons, Fort Scott I was a sophomore at the University of Kansas, and I was walking between classes. I went through the student union and the big room with a whole bunch of TVs on the west wall. There were hundreds of people in that room, and there wasn’t a sound. And everybody was staring at the TVs. I remember I asked some guy, “What’s happened?” and he said the President’s been shot. And I’ve never forgotten it. There were people crying and embracing. There were people kneeling on the floor. It’s one of those things you just don’t forget.