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START 2021 IN A BRAND NEW RIDE! 1411 Glenn Blvd SW, Fort Payne, AL 35967

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THE SOUTHERN TORCH / FRIDAY, JANUARY 22, 2021 / VOL. 7, NO. 4 / $1.00

DCSO Releases 2020 Statistics

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Fort Payne Shutters DeKalb Theatre

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SPORTS

• 2021 DeKalb Co. Tournament • All-County Cheer and Football

COMMUNITY • Loomis Bros. Circus Returns to Rainsville • Check out our Upcoming Events in DeKalb County!

By Southern Torch Staff FORT PAYNE, Ala. — The DeKalb County Sheriff's Office has released their annual statistics for 2020. The numbers listed below reflect all activities that the DCSO has worked on from the past year, including the total number of arrests made, number of calls answered, and the amount of illegal drugs seized. This data helps DCSO operate more effectively and efficiently and enables them to better serve the citizens of DeKalb County. • Total Miles Driven: 608,322 • Number of Calls Answered: 6,731 • Number of Reports Taken: 3,239 • Civil Papers Served: 2,367 • Civil Papers Attempted to Serve: 2,274 • Subpoenas Served: 2,254 • Subpoenas Attempted to Serve: 1,487 • Total Arrest: 2,154 • Number of Assist: 3,195 • Number of Search Warrants/Consent: 336 • 911 Hang up Calls Answered: 681 • Alarm Calls Answered: 987 • Cases Closed: 906

> DCSO, P4

POLITICS

In the newly-drawn 2021 budget for the City of Fort Payne, the DeKalb Theatre received no funding and thus, will be shut down until further notice. (MapQuest)

By Marla Jones Managing Editor marla@southerntorch.com

FORT PAYNE, Ala. — The Fort Payne City Council conducted their regularly scheduled meeting via a virtual platform on Tuesday. The Council adopted the FY2021 Municipal Budget in the amount of approximately $27 million, which did not

include funding, aside from utilities, for the historic DeKalb Theatre. The Boom Days event also received no funding in the current budget. According to Fort Payne Mayor Brian Baine, the city opted against funding for its public event venues, which also resulted in the layoff of three (3) City employees with another being moved to

the Parks and Recreation department. "I do not know what will happen to the theatre for sure though it does look like the doors will be shuttered for a period of time," said Maurey Roberts, the former Special Events and Venues Manager, who was laid off. "Also, I do not know what will happen with Boom Days."

By Marla Jones Managing Editor marla@southerntorch.com

RAINSVILLE, Ala. — On Tuesday, the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) along with the DeKalb County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) hosted a drive-thru COVID-19 vaccination clinic. The event, which was held at the Northeast Alabama Agri-Business Center,

• READY TO TRAVEL IN 2021? GIVE MARLA A CALL: 256-638-4040

> FP, P4

• Rainsville Amends Budget • DA Sentences Habitual Offender • Inside The Statehouse with Steve Flowers

BUSINESS • ADPH Releases Vaccine Provider Dashboard • See Who's Featured in Our Business Spotlight!

COVID-19 Vaccines Reach DeKalb had 500 doses of the new vaccine for first responders, healthcare workers, and people over the age of 75. While the clinic did eventually run out of its allotted doses, EMA Deputy Director Michael Posey stated that ADPH plans to return to DeKalb County on a monthly basis until all the population has a chance to receive the vaccine or until it becomes available at local pharmacies and

physician offices. DeKalb County EMA Director Anthony Clifton stated the COVID-19 vaccine would likely be held on February 18 and include extended people groups that were not eligible this time. "I just want to encourage you to take this COVID vaccination. We need shots in the arm, not on the shelf, said Governor Kay Ivey. For more information, please visit alpublichealth.gov.

  

Baine stated he hoped to revisit funding for the DeKalb Theatre next year. Previously, the Fort Payne City Council allotted $200,000 to the Fort Payne City School system to provide school supplies for students, however, in the updated budget, only $50,000 has been made available

 

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SYLVANIA PHARMACY YOUR FRIEND, YOUR DRUGSTORE! Visit our website at www.southerntorch.com for daily news updates and pick up your weekly print edition at news stands every Friday.


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FRIDAY — JANUARY 22, 2020

THE SOUTHERN TORCH

START 2021 IN A BRAND NEW RIDE! 1411 Glenn Blvd SW, Fort Payne, AL 35967

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BancorpSouth Buys FNB

By Marla Jones Managing Editor marla@southerntorch.com

SCOTTSBORO, Ala. — BancorpSouth Bank recently announced the merger agreement with FNS Bancshares, Inc., the parent company of FNB Bank. BancorpSouth Bank is headquartered in Tupelo, Mississippi, with approximately $24 billion in assets. BancorpSouth operates approximately 310 full-service branch locations as well as additional mortgage, insurance, and loan production offices in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Tennessee, and Texas, including an insurance location in Illinois.

FNS was founded in 1900 in Scottsboro, Alabama. The bank operates 17 full-service banking offices in Alabama, Georgia, and Tennessee. The merger will expand BancorpSouth’s presence in Jackson, DeKalb, and Marshall counties in Alabama and the Chattanooga, Tennessee-Georgia, and Nashville-DavidsonMurfreesboro-Franklin, Tennessee areas. As of September 30, 2020 (unaudited), FNS, reported total assets of $786.5 million, total loans of $492.5 million, and total deposits of $665.9 million. Under the terms of the merger agreement, BancorpSouth will issue 2,975,000 shares of

common stock, plus $18.0 million in cash, for all outstanding shares of FNS capital stock, subject to certain conditions and potential adjustments. Based upon the closing price of BancorpSouth common stock on January 12, 2021, the transaction is valued at approximately $108.4 million or $90.04 per share of FNS common stock. “We are excited

about this partnership and look forward to welcoming FNS’s teammates and customers to BancorpSouth,� stated BancorpSouth Chairman and CEO Dan Rollins. “FNS is a 120-year-old institution with deep ties in its local markets and is an ideal fit with our culture as a relationship-driven community bank. We’re looking forward to

working with its experienced team of bankers to assist even more families and businesses with their banking needs.� FNS Board Chairman Alan Gay said, “Our customers have come to expect exceptional service from our bank, so we’re pleased to have an opportunity to join forces with another more than a 100-yearold company that

continues to operate as a true community bank. BancorpSouth’s resources and strengths, and its commitment to maintaining strong local leadership, will enable our bankers to continue and enhance service to our customers.� Upon completion of the transaction, FNS CEO Steve Rownd will serve as a BancorpSouth division president. The merger has been unanimously approved by the boards of directors of both companies. The merger is anticipated to close during the first half of 2021, pending the receipt of regulatory approval, the approval of FNS shareholders, and the satisfaction of other customary closing conditions.

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FRIDAY — JANUARY 22, 2020

THE SOUTHERN TORCH

COMMUNITY

Remembering Rene Ramos By Southern Torch Staff admin@southerntorch.com

FORT PAYNE, Ala. — Last week, the DeKalb County Sheriff's Office announced the passing of retired deputy Rene Ramos. Ramos served in the department for over 15 years in several different positions including patrol deputy, school resource officer, investigations, and chief jailer. "Deputy Ramos was definitely an outstanding example of a professional Law Enforcement figure. I have many great memories of Deputy Ramos and so do many others at our office that will live on forever," said DeKalb County

Loomis Bros. Circus Returns to Rainsville

By Southern Torch Staff admin@southerntorch.com

(DeKalb County Sheriff's Office)

Sheriff Nick Welden. " Not only did he serve DeKalb County with true professionalism and patriotism, but he also serves this county in the same manner. Men like this nowadays are hard to come by. I’m glad the Lord Blessed me and allowed me to know such a fine man!" The thoughts and prayers of the entire Sheriff's Office are with Ramos's family and friends.

RAINSVILLE, Ala. — The family fun returns to Rainsville when Loomis Bros. Circus presents “3-Rings of Fun For 2021!”— a limited 2-day engagement running Monday, February 8 and Tuesday, February 9 at the Northeast Alabama Agri-Business Center with daily performances at 4:30 and 7:30 pm. In their biggest production to date, “America’s Greatest Circus”, features an international cast of performers and exotic animals including White Siberian and Royal Bengal tigers, Asian and

African elephants, American Liberty show ponies, and more— all backed by the fabulous Loomis Brothers Circus Orchestra. As always, renowned ringmaster Justin Loomis will be your guide to the pageantry for a spectacle where all your favorite circus acts abound. From the beautiful aerial ballet to the exciting motorcycle globe, to the dangerous den of ferocious tigers - you and your family will partake on a magical journey around the world without even leaving your seat! Plus, you will not want to miss the North American premiere of the

UPCOMING EVENTS Submit your local upcoming events to zach@southerntorch.com to be featured in an upcoming edition! January 22, Grand Opening of Lookout Mountain Creamery and Desserts - The grand opening of Fort Payne's brand new Lookout Mountain Creamery and Desserts will be held on Friday, January 22. They are located at 2612 Gault Ave. N in Fort Payne. January 25, DeKalb Co. Republican Women Meeting - The DeKalb County Republican Women will host their 2021 kickoff meeting at the DeKalb County Commission Chambers on Monday, January 25. Britney Garner, the President of the Alabama Federation of Republican

Women will be the featured speaker. January 27, Elwood Staffing Hiring Event Elwood Staffing of Fort Payne will host a hiring event on Wednesday, January 27 from 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 1000 Gault Ave. S in Fort Payne. A Spanish translator will be available and the event will include openings in Fort Payne, Dogtown, Rainsville, and Valley Head! January 30, 2021 Meet the Hornets Dinner Auction - The 2021 Annual Meet the Hornets Dinner Auction will be held on Saturday, January 30 at 5 p.m. at Ider Baptist Church. The

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event is hosted by the Ider Baseball Team. February 6, Alabama Bass Federation Qualifying Tournament - The Mountain Lakes Chamber of Commerce will host the Qualifying Tournament for the Alabama Bass Federation on Saturday, February 6 beginning at 6 a.m. on Lake Guntersville near Goose Pond Colony. February 8-9, Loomis Bros. Circus - It's the return of family fun! Come on out and experience a good old-fashioned three-ring circus when Alabama's favorite touring circus brings their big show for 2021 back to Rainsville! Loomis Bros. Circus features over 90 minutes of wonder and excitement with traditional circus act and live music. For tickets and showtimes, please visit loomiscircus.com/ tickets. February 20-21, Little Britches Rodeo at the

SOUTHERN TORCH • 98-3 WILD COUNTRY • 101-7 THE TORCH Staff:

Southern Torch (USPS Periodicals #19790) is published each Friday by Southern Torch, Inc. 203 Main Street E, Rainsville, Ala. 35986. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Southern Torch, P.O. Box 614, Rainsville, Ala. 35986-0614.

Eloise Smith, General Manager Marla Jones, Managing Editor/Sports Joe Sims, Radio Operations Manager Zach Hester, Art Director/Reporter Amy Thrash, Account Executive Jenna Sue Payne, Account Executive B. Annette Little, Account Executive Teresa Smith, Traffic Director Dylan Smith, Jackson Blaze Managing Editor Lindsey Jones, Accounting Marshall Stiefel, Distribution Manager Tim Jones, Account Executive

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Agri-Business Center - The Little Britches Rodeo will return to the Northeast Alabama Agri-Business Center on February 20 and February 21. Get ready for a 2 1/2 hour adventure for those who aren't afraid to explore on your knees, belly, in the mud, and through tight tunnels. The adventure includes a helmet, cave lamps, and a fun, informative guide! The cost is $5 per person, but those under 18 are free. This event is organized by the Alabama Little Britches Rodeo Association. For more information, please visit their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ albra.rodeo or visit nealagribusinesscenter.com.

“High-Flying Eagles “acrobatic troupe all the way from Belarus. Join us at the 7:30 pm performance on Tuesday, February 9 for Southern Torch Night at the circus where you will have a chance to meet the Southern Torch staff and watch them ride the elephant to welcome you into the Circus! The circus remains the best value in family entertainment with full-priced adult tickets still costing only $20. As a bonus, each adult ticket includes free admission for up to 2 children ages 2-12. Tickets can be purchased online at loomiscircus.com or at the door beginning one

hour prior to each showtime. Seating is general admission — so be sure to arrive early to grab the best spot! Finally, to help the community mitigate the spread of COVID-19, Loomis Bros. Circus will be taking extra precautions at each event to promote the health and safety of valued guests, crew members, and performers. To learn more about these additional measures, visit loomiscircus.com/ COVID19. The Northeast Alabama Agri-Business Center is located at 1571 McCurdy Avenue N, in Rainsville, Alabama.

Welcome Home?

By Marla Jones Managing Editor marla@southerntorch.com

RAINSVILLE, Ala. — After returning home for the first time in two weeks, a Rainsville man found a naked man in his living room. On Thursday, January 14, the Rainsville Police Department arrested Michael Lynn May (37 of Boaz), who has been charged with drug possession, possession of drug paraphernalia, and third-degree burglary. When the McCurdy Avenue homeowner discovered the unwelcome visitor, he called the police. May told officers

Last week, Michael Lynn May was arrested on drug and burglary charges after being found naked in the home of a Rainsville man. (DCSO)

that he did not know how long he had been at the home and he didn't know the homeowner. He also told officers that he had taken several Xanax pills. May is currently being held in the DeKalb County Jail without bond.


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FRIDAY — JANUARY 22, 2020

THE SOUTHERN TORCH

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FROM PAGE 1

ALABAMA — The Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) has created a new facet of their COVID-19 data dashboard to include non-hospital locations that have been selected to receive part of Alabama's small vaccine allocation. "While hospitals in a few areas of the state have begun vaccinating other groups, most hospitals are still working to ensure their frontline workers are vaccinated," ADPH said via Facebook.

"Information about hospital vaccine availability will be added later when vaccine is available for additional groups." Only healthcare workers, first responders, and people over the age of 75 are eligible to receive a vaccine for COVID-19. According to the newly-released dashboard on alpublichealth.gov, a total of 158,116 vaccine

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Faith

   

      



ADPH Releases Vaccine DCSO Distribution Dashboard By Zach Hester Reporter zach@southerntorch.com



doses have been administered in the State of Alabama, out of a possible 446,150 vaccines that have been delivered to the state so far. The dashboards lists three locations in DeKalb County as vaccine providers, including the DeKalb County Health Department, Rainsville Drugs, and North DeKalb Primary Care. According to ADPH, the sites listed may not have vaccine on hand. As of press time, vaccines were only being adminstered via appointment. Please contact the DeKalb County Health Department at (256) 845-1931.

• Sex Offender Checks: 309 Narcotics & Interdiction Unit • Drug Cases: 656 • Methamphetamine Seized: 8,795 grams • Marijuana Seized: 36,298 grams • Spice Seized: 736 grams • Pills seized: 2,224 • Heroin seized: 20 grams • Cocaine seized: 44 grams • Cash Seized: $115,305 • Cars Seized: 13 Investigations Unit • Number of Cases Assigned: 742 • Number of Cases Closed: 515 "This is something we felt like needed to be open to the public for many reasons," said DeKalb County Sheriff Nick Welden. "We would like to show just what takes place in our county and how it is wholeheartedly fought day in and day out 24/7 for the residents of DeKalb County." "We are a family that fights for your family and I hope this shows just that! We look forward to serving you in 2021," he concluded.

FP

FROM PAGE 1 for Fort Payne’s teachers. The money saved by excluding this program will the hiring of two police officers. The first reading of Ordinance 2021-02 was presented that allowed the City to adjust the rates by 3%, recurring every year for sanitation and sewer service. “I’m still not in favor of the recurring payment, being so much more than the cost of living index, right now,â€? stated Councilmember John Smith. “I think we need it because we are out of equipment over there but to just write a blank check that we are going to raise 3% thus every year, with no end in sight, I’m not for sure, I can live with it.â€? Since this is the first reading, the Council will vote on the Ordinance at the next meeting. In other business the Council approved: • An appraisal for the sale of the DeSoto Golf

Course (The County Club will not be shut down immediately but will phase out in order to give time for those who use this facility currently for meetings) • Annual bids for d fuel, sewer piping, rock, J b gravel, and asphalt • The appointment F S of John T. Davis and C Kenneth Larson to the Fort Payne Improvement o Authority Board F • The appointment S of Terry Camp to the Fort M b Payne Water Board • Resolution 2021-01 M which authorizes TARCOG to administer S the $450,000 CDPG grant, for the demolition S W of the Old Hospital w building on Forrest Ave. C • Ordinance 2021-01 which would allow businesses to advertise on the DeKalb Theatre Marquee (call Sonya at Fort Payne City Hall for advertising applications) The next meeting of the Fort Payne City Council will be held on Tuesday, February 2.

    

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FRIDAY — JANUARY 22, 2020

THE SOUTHERN TORCH

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PUBLIC NOTICES LEGALS MORTGAGE FORECLOSURE NOTICE DEFAULT HAVING BEEN MADE in the payment of the indebtedness secured by that certain Real Estate Mortgage executed by KENNETH YARBROUGH, the mortgagor, to FIRST BANK OF THE SOUTH, the mortgagee, which mortgage was recorded on March 20, 2015 in Mortgage Book 2089, Page 117 in the Office of the Judge of Probate, DeKalb County, Alabama; and which mortgage was re-recorded on April 6, 2015 in Mortgage Book 2091, Page 98 for the purpose of clarifying that the property is not the homestead of the Mortgagor or his spouse; and that certain Additional Advance secured by said Mortgage recorded on May 29, 2015 in Mortgage Book 2097, Page 344; and that certain Additional Advance secured by said Mortgage recorded on February 28, 2016 in Mortgage Book 2132, Page 275;and that certain Additional Advance secured by said Mortgage recorded on March 30, 2016 in Mortgage Book 2136, Page 176; and that certain Additional Advance secured by said Mortgage recorded on November 17, 2016 in Mortgage Book 2169, Page 173; and that certain Assignment of Leases and Rents recorded on November 17, 2016 in Miscellaneous Book 463, page 27;and that certain Additional Advance secured by said Mortgage recorded on April 6, 2017 in Mortgage Book 2188, Page 137; and that certain Additional Advance secured by said Mortgage recorded on September 21, 2017 in Mortgage Book 2212, Page 247; and that certain Additional Advance secured by said Mortgage recorded on October 5, 2017 in Mortgage Book 2214, Page 142; and that certain Additional Advance secured by said Mortgage recorded on April 25, 2018 in Mortgage Book 2232, Page 3010 in the Office of the Judge of Probate, DeKalb County, Alabama; AND DEFAULT CONTINUING, notice hereby is given that under the power of sale contained in said mortgage, I will, on behalf of First State Bank of DeKalb County, as successor in interest to First Bank of the South, proceed to sell on February 10, 2021, during the legal hours of sale; to-wit: 11:00 o'clock a.m. to 4:00 o'clock p.m., in front of the main entrance door to the DeKalb County Courthouse in Fort Payne, Alabama, to the highest, best, and last bidder for cash, the following described real estate situated in DeKalb County, Alabama, and described as follows: The Southwest Fourth of the Northeast Fourth of Section 5, Township 9 South, Range 8 East. Containing 40 acres, more or less, in DeKalb County, Alabama. The mineral and mining rights in said lands are hereby excepted from this conveyance. Said sale is for the purpose of securing payment of the indebtedness secured by said Mortgage, together with the costs of foreclosure.

Honorable Ronnie E. Osborn, Judge of Probate. NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that all persons having claims against the said Estate are hereby required to present the same within the time allowed by law or the same will be barred.

***Alabama law gives some persons who have an interest in property the right to redeem the property under certain circumstances. Programs may also exist that help persons avoid or delay the foreclosure process. An attorney should be consulted to help you understand these rights and programs as a part of the foreclosure process.

persons having claims against the said Estate are hereby required to present the same within the time allowed by law or the same will be barred.

LEGALS

To be published: January 15, January 22, and January 29

To be published: January 8, January 15, and January 22

IN THE DISTRICT COURT OF DEKALB COUNTY

LEGALS

Case No.: CS-2020-900112

IN THE PROBATE COURT OF DEKALB COUNTY

Kimberly Dianne Brown, Plaintiff vs. Marvin Paul Gilbert III, Defendant

Case No.: 2021-12

LEGALS IN THE PROBATE COURT OF DEKALB COUNTY Case No.: CS-2020-140 IN RE: The Estate of Brenda Jean Anderson, deceased NOTICE OF FINAL SETTLEMENT Edward Anderson, Executive of the Estate of Brenda Jean Anderson, deceased, has filed a petition for final settlement in the above matter and the 9th day of February 2021 at 9:30 o'clock a.m., has been appointed as the day for Final Settlement of said Estate; and said Petition and the matters presented therein shall be heard. To be published: January 8, January 15, and January 22

LEGALS IN THE PROBATE COURT OF DEKALB COUNTY Case No.: CS-2020-140 IN RE: The Estate of Brenda Jean Anderson, deceased NOTICE OF FINAL SETTLEMENT Edward Anderson, Executive of the Estate of Brenda Jean Anderson, deceased, has filed a petition for final settlement in the above matter and the 9th day of February 2021 at 9:30 o'clock a.m., has been appointed as the day for Final Settlement of said Estate; and said Petition and the matters presented therein shall be heard. To be published: January 8, January 15, and January 22

LEGALS

To be published: January 15, January 22, and January 29

NOTICE TO MARVIN PAUL GILBERT, III OF CUSTODY/PATERNITY ACTION NOTICE TO Marvin Paul Gilbert, III, the defendant at father of the child of Kimberly Dianne Brown, whose whereabouts are unknown, you must answer the Petition for Paternity and Custody and other relief by February 28, 2021, which shall be (30) days after the last publication of this Notice. If you fail to timely file an answer, a judgment of default may be rendered against you in CS-2020-900112.00, District Court of DeKalb County, Alabama. To be published: January 8, January 15, January 22, and January 29

LEGALS IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF DEKALB COUNTY Case No.: CS-2020-900175 Juana Alcon Raymundo, Plaintiff vs. Carlos Mendoza Cruz, Defendant NOTICE OF DIVORCE PROCEEDINGS CARLOS MENDOZA CRUZ, whose whereabouts are unknown, must answer the Complaint for Divorce and other relief by the 1st day of March, 2021, or, thereafter, a judgment by default may be rendered against him in Case No.: DR 2020-900175, in the Circuit Court of DeKalb County, Alabama. WATSON & WATSON 139 West Main Street Albertville, Ala. 35950 To be published: January 8, January 15, January 22, and January 29

IN THE PROBATE COURT OF DEKALB COUNTY

LEGALS

Case No.: CS-2021-2

IN THE PROBATE COURT OF DEKALB COUNTY

IN RE: THE ESTATE OF SYBIL LANELL BANKS, DECEASED

Case No.: 2021-7

NOTICE TO FILE CLAIMS TAKE NOTICE that Letters Testamentary having been granted to THOMAS ALAN BANKS, as Personal Representative of the Estate of SYBIL LANELL BANKS, deceased, on the 11th day of January 2021, by the Honorable Ronnie E. Osborn, Judge of Probate. NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that all

IN RE: THE ESTATE OF STEVE ALLEN WALKER, DECEASED NOTICE TO FILE CLAIMS TAKE NOTICE that Letters Testamentary having been granted to NELDA BROWN, as Personal Representative of the Estate of STEVE ALLEN WALKER, deceased, on the 11th day of January 2021, by the

IN RE: THE ESTATE OF STEVE ALLEN WALKER, DECEASED NOTICE TO FILE CLAIMS TAKE NOTICE that Letters Testamentary having been granted to NELDA BROWN, as Personal Representative of the Estate of STEVE ALLEN WALKER, deceased, on the 11th day of January 2021, by the Honorable Ronnie E. Osborn, Judge of Probate. NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that all persons having claims against the said Estate are hereby required to present the same within the time allowed by law or the same will be barred. To be published: January 15, January 22, and January 29

LEGALS IN THE DISTRICT COURT OF DEKALB COUNTY, ALABAMA Case No.: JU-2020-259.01 In the Matter of W.T.T., a minor (D.O.B. 8/2/17) NOTICE OF PETITION BY BRANDON TINKER AND ANY OTHER INTERESTED PARTY Brandon Tinker, and any other interested party, please take notice that a Petition to Terminate Parental Rights regarding the minor child, W.T.T., in the above-styled matter has been filed in said Court by Megan Garner, Petitioner, and that the 4th day of March, 2021 at 10:00 o'clock a.m. has been set for hearing on the same at the DeKalb County Courthouse in Fort Payne, Alabama. Brandon Tinker, and any other interested party, be advised that if you intend to contest this termination of parental rights, you must file a written response on or before the 22nd day of February, 2021 with counsel for said Petitioner, and with the Clerk of the District Court or thereafter a judgment by default may be rendered. DONE this 7th day of January, 2021. To be published: January 15, January 22, January 29, February 5

LEGALS IN THE PROBATE COURT OF DEKALB COUNTY Case No.: 2021-13 IN THE MATTER OF ROGER DALE BURT,

DECEASED NOTICE TO: KEITH ALLEN BURT ADDRESS: UNKNOWN To: Keith Allen Burt, you are notified that the 11th day of Feburary, 2021 at 11:00 o'clock a.m., is set as a date and time for hearing the Petition for Probate of the Last Will and Testament of Roger Dale Burt, deceased, Probate Office, DeKalb County, Alabama, Case Number: 2021-13. You may appear and contest the same if you deem it proper. Attorney for the Petitioner Jack Floyd, Esquire 808 Chestnut Street Gadsden, Ala. 35901 To be published: January 15, January 22, and January 29

LEGALS MORTGAGE FORECLOSURE NOTICE DEFAULT HAVING BEEN MADE in the payment of the indebtedness secured by that certain Real Estate Mortgage executed by Ronnie Coots and wife, Lisa Coots, the mortgagors, to FIRST BANK OF THE SOUTH, the mortgagee, which mortgage was recorded on July 13, 2016 in Mortgage Book 2150, Page 201 in the Office of the Judge of Probate, DeKalb County, Alabama; AND DEFAULT CONTINUING, notice hereby is given that under the power of sale contained in said mortgage, I will, on behalf of First State Bank of DeKalb County, as successor in interest to First Bank of the South, proceed to sell on February 24, 2021, during the legal hours of sale; to-wit: 11:00 o'clock a.m. to 4:00 o'clock p.m., in front of the main entrance door to the DeKalb County Courthouse in Fort Payne, Alabama, to the highest, best, and last bidder for cash, the following described real estate situated in DeKalb County, Alabama, and described as follows: Tract 4 of the Billy Wagner properties according to a plat recorded in the Office of the Judge of Probate, DeKalb County, Alabama in Plat Book 7, Page 311 (Slide 213) and to which reference is hereby made for a more particular description of the lands herein described. Also conveyed is an easement for the maintenance of an existing field line system more particularly described as follows: Commencing at the Southeast corner of the Northeast Âź of the Northeast Âź of Section 22, Township 6 South, Range 8 East of the Huntsville Meridian, DeKalb County, Alabama, run North 88 degrees 04 minutes 05 seconds West with the South boundary line of the Northeast Âź of the Northeast Âź of said Section 22 for 307.94 feet to an iron pin marking the Southwest corner of a 0.69 acre tract of land; thence run North 43

degrees 44 minutes 18 seconds East with the Northwest boundary line of said tract for 135.00 feet for a point of beginning of a 40 foot wide easement for a septic field line system; thence run North 75 degrees 00 minutes West for 100.00 feet for a point off ending of said easement. Said easement being 40 feet in width lying 20 feet on each side of the above described centerline and having a centerline length of 100.00 feet, and is to serve the property as described as the 0.69 acre tract referenced to above. Said easement is lying in the Northeast Âź of the Northeast Âź of Section 22, Township 6 South, Range 8 East of the Huntsville Meridian, DeKalb County, Alabama. Said sale is for the purpose of securing payment of the indebtedness secured by said Mortgage, together with the costs of foreclosure. ***Alabama law gives some persons who have an interest in property the right to redeem the property under certain circumstances. Programs may also exist that help persons avoid or delay the foreclosure process. An attorney should be consulted to help you understand these rights and programs as a part of the foreclosure process. To be published: January 22, January 29, February 5

LEGALS IN THE PROBATE COURT OF DEKALB COUNTY, ALABAMA Case No.: 2021-20 IN THE MATTER OF THE ESTATE OF JEFFREY WARREN LUSK, deceased LETTERS OF ADMINISTRATION ON THE ESTATE OF JEFFREY WARREN LUSK, deceased, having been granted to the undersigned on the 18th day of January, 2021, by the Honorable Ronnie Osborn, Judge of Probate of Said County, notice is jereby given that all persons having claims against said estate, are hereby required to present the same within the time allowed by law, or the same will be barred. To be published: January 22, January 29, and February 5

DEATH NOTICES CORNER STONE

Freedom Point Church of God at 6 p.m.

Linda Joyce Atkins - 78 of Sulphur Springs, died on Wednesday, January 13. Services and burial were held on Friday, January 15 at Sulphur Springs Cemetery.

Jep Jack Sutton - 67 of Valley Head, died on Monday, January 18. Services were held on Wednesday, January 20 with burial in Stewart Cemetery.

Bueford Porter - 75 of Trenton, Ga., died on Friday, January 15. Services were held on Monday, January 18 with burial in Pinehaven Memorial Gardens. William David Burk - 89 of Ider, died on Saturday, January 16. Services were held on Wednesday, January 20 with burial in Steele Cemetery.

BURT

W.T. WILSON Wannet Guinn - 85 of Fyffe, died on Tuesday, January 12. Services and burial were held on Thursday, January 14 at Green’s Chapel Cemetery. Dawn Lynette Little - 53 of Langston, died on Wednesday, January 13. Services and burial were held on Friday, January 15 at Langston Cemetery.

Gregory Scott Staley - 55 of Fort Payne, died on Monday, January 11. Services will be held by the family at a later date.

Violet Wadkins - 95 of Sylvania, died on Wednesday, January 13. Cremation services provided by W.T. Wilson Funeral Chapel.

David Roger Poulton - 62 of Fort Payne, died on Thursday, January 14. Services will be held on Saturday, January 23 at

Joseph Dewey Hobbs - 67 of Collinsville, died on Thursday, January 14. Cremation services provided by W.T.

Burt Funeral H omes

Wilson Funeral Chapel. Tevis Lee Car - 86 of Fort Payne, died on Friday, January 15. Services were held on Monday, January 18 with burial in Green’s Chapel Cemetery. Waymon Daniel Veal - 59 of Valley Head, died on Saturday, January 16. Services were held on Thursday, January 21 with burial in Town Creek Cemetery. Jesse Raybon “Buck� Wilborn - 83 of Section, died on Saturday, January 16. Services and burial were held on Tuesday, January 19 in Green’s Chapel Cemetery.

CROSSVILLE Joe Crump - 60 of Crossville, died on Thursday, January 14. Private services were held by the family with burial in Lathamville Cemetery. Cindy Nash - 68 of Crossville, died on Friday, January 15. Services were held on Monday, January 18 with burial in Mt. Pleasant Cemetery.

   

WILSON

    

Carolyn Greenwood Burch - 74 of Fort Payne, died on Tuesday, January 12. Services were held on Saturday, January 16 with

  

burial in Adamsburg Cemetery. Donald Earl Goodman Sr. - 83 of Fort Payne, died on Tuesday, January 12. Services were held on Thursday, January 14 with burial in Glenwood Cemetery. Gwen Smith - 90 of Valley Head, died on Thursday, January 14. Barbara Lewis Copeland - 77 of Fort Payne, died on Saturday, January 16. Private graveside services will be held. Shelby Kennedy McIntyre - 83 of Fort Payne, died on Saturday, January 16. Services were held on Wednesday, January 20 with burial in Glenwood Cemetery. Lee Swart - 84 of Fort Payne, died on Sunday, January 17. Services were held on Tuesday, January 19 with burial in Oakley City Cemetery in Kansas. Joseph William Biddle - 86 of Fort Payne, died on Sunday, January 17. Services were held on Tuesday, January 19 with burial in Holly Springs Cemetery. Martha Bolton Bobo - 88 of Fischer, died on Sunday, January 17.

Services and burial were held on Wednesday, January 20 in Fischer Cemetery.

RAINSVILLE Rene Ramos - 71 of Rainsville, died on Tuesday, January 12. Services were held on Friday, January 15 with burial in Broadway Cemetery. Larry Buttram - 74 of Sylvania, passed away on Thursday, January 14. Services and burial were held on Friday, January 15 in Union Grove Cemetery.

January 20, 2021, at 1 p.m. at Rainsville Funeral Home Chapel with Dr. Mike Mitchell and Dr. Pat McFadden officiating. Burial followed in Broadway Cemetery with Rainsville Funeral Home directing. Visitation was held on Wednesday, January 20, 2021, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. She is survived by her niece, Renee Wright (fiance, Jordan Shores) and brother, Johnny W. Wright (wife, Lynne Wright). She was preceded in death by her husband, Bob Bishop and parents, Orin Welden and Lucille Townsend. Arlin R. “Buck� Badgett - 74 of Blake, died on Tuesday, January 19. Private graveside services will be held.

Nancy Wright Bishop - 68 of Rainsville, Ala., passed away on Sunday, January 17, 2021, at Memorial Hospital. Funeral services were held on Wednesday,

Dorris Rains Smith - 94 of Chavies, died on Tuesday, January 19. Services and burial were held on Wednesday, January 20 at Mountain View Memory Gardens.


6

FRIDAY — JANUARY 22, 2020

POLITICS

DA Announces Sentencing of Habitual Offender

By Southern Torch Staff admin@southerntorch.com

FORT PAYNE, Ala. — On Tuesday, January 19, Dennis John Johnson was sentenced by DeKalb County District Attorney Mike O'Dell on the following charges: • 20 years for Attempted Assault 1st • 20 years for Certain Persons Forbidden to Possess a Firearm • 12 months for Attempt to Elude • 12 months for Reckless Endangerment Johnson was sentenced in the court of Judge Andrew Hairston on charges stemming from guilty verdicts returned by a jury on November 18, 2020. Johnson's initial arrest came from an April 20018 car chase that involved numerous law enforcement officers. Officers chased Johnson through Fort Payne, all the way to Chattooga County, Ga., where the chase ended after Hammondville

Police Chief Gary Shavers attempted to deploy a spike strip. Johnson was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Summer McWhorter and Assistant District Attorney Dennis Thompson. "Not only the safety of law enforcement officers, but also the safety of citizens of this county were put in jeopardy as a result of this Defendant’s actions," said McWhorter. "The verdicts of the jury and the sentences handed down by the judge show that this illegal and dangerous behavior will not be tolerated here." "This result would not be possible without our partners in law enforcement," added District Attorney Mike O'Dell. " Many thanks to the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office and the Fort Payne Police Department for their work in seeing this case through until the end."

THE SOUTHERN TORCHT

Rainsville Amends Budget

By Marla Jones Managing Editor marla@southerntorch.com

RAINSVILLE, Ala. — (Full video at southerntorch.com) The Rainsville City Council held their regularly scheduled meeting on Monday, January 18. During the meeting, the Council voted to amend the budget. This will allow adjustments to pay scale, revenue, an increase in budgeted costs, and capital outlay. The amended budget will make pay scale adjustments to Waste Water Treatment Plant, dropping to two operators for the rest of the year. With changes to the pay scale for graded operators, the personnel cost would drop approximately $10,000 for the remainder of the fiscal year. With the pay scale adjustment in the budget, a position will be added to the police department pay scale for a lieutenant, which would increase personnel cost by $2,500 for the remainder of the year. The net change in

the 2021 budget due to the pay scale adjustments would be $7,500 lower in cost. The City of Rainsville had an increase in gross tax receipts by $45,000 based on the final 2020 collections. The amended budget will include a $19,000 increase in expenditures. Due to the unforeseen cost of replacement of lights at the Public Work Department in the amount of $17,000 and the need to add new netting at the Sports Complex in the amount of $2,000. In capital outlay, the Council approved the following: • Upgrade of handicap entrance at the library in the amount of $3,000 • Ceiling replacement and floor refinishing at the Bevill Center in the amount of $27,900 • Cost of new public safety vehicles at a financed cost of $660,000

• Proceeds from debt issued for new public safety vehicles $660,000 • The net changes in the 2021 budget would be $30,900 in increased expenditures. The 2021 budget surplus is increased from $269 to $2,869, In other business, the Council approved: • Wave Air Purifier for the Bevill Center (This item will be purchased by the DeKalb County Commission) • Box inlet on the corner of Everett/Scott Street in the amount of $1400 to Boozer Construction • Voice Analysis Training for Josh Wilson and Todd Bowen of the Rainsville Police Department in the

amount of $6,090, which includes equipment • Public Information Training for Todd Bowen in the amount of $180 • Chair for Dispatch in the amount of $1,197 • Resolution 1-18-2021 to surplus a Mahindra Tractor at the Wastewater Treatment Plant • To start Phase 1 of the Scada System (which helps run the system) at the Wastewater Treatment Plant • Purchase cameras at the Wastewater Treatment Plant in the amount of $1,485 from Farmers Telephone Cooperative The next meeting of the Rainsville City Council will be February 1 with a work session beginning at 4 p.m. and the regular session at 4:30 p.m.

INSIDE THE STATEHOUSE Alabama's Prison Issues Continue in 2021

By Steve Flowers Political Columnist www.steveflowers.us

MONTGOMERY, Ala. — As the 2021 Regular Legislative Session looms, the 800-pound gorilla in the room is the prison issue. The situation has grown more dire and imminent because the U.S. Justice Department has now filed suit against the State of Alabama. When Kay Ivey took office in January of 2019, she and the new legislature knew that they were going to have to address the prison problem in the state. Fixing prisons is not a popular issue. It wins you no votes to fix a broken prison system. Prisoners do not vote.

However, victims of crime generally are voters, and they are adamant and vociferous in their beliefs that those who committed crimes should be put behind bars, locked up, and the keys were thrown away. Judges also believe in strict prison sentences, especially in Alabama. Our judges are elected in the Heart of Dixie. Therefore, our prisons are overcrowded. Our men’s prisons are currently at 157% capacity. Governor Ivey and this legislature did not cause this problem. It has been building up and festering for years. The chickens have just come home to roost under their watch. Alabama prisons

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Steve Flowers is Alabama’s leading political columnist. His weekly column appears in over 60 Alabama newspapers. He served 16 years in the state legislature. Steve may be reached at www.steveflowers.us.

have been overcrowded and understaffed for years. Ivey’s predecessor, former Governor Robert Bentley, proposed legislation that would have built new prisons with a bond issue. Lawmakers considered several courses of action but never came up with a solution. The major obstacles to finding a remedy through legislative action is the cost factor and the location of any new prisons. Having a state prison in your district is a political plum for any legislator, especially those in rural

districts. A prison is an economic boom to locals. It not only provides a host of jobs but also has peripheral economic benefits. The state realized the seriousness of this problem in April of 2019 when the Department of Justice stepped in and said Alabama has to do something or they will. The Feds have in the past taken over Alabama’s Prison System during the George Wallace vs. Judge Frank Johnson era. In recent years the federal government has taken over California’s prison system due to overcrowding. The ultimate leniency threshold seems to be 150% capacity. When the Justice Department sent the warning, we were at 175% capacity. During the 2019 legislative session the legislature, led by Senator Cam Ward, took some actions toward recidivism that has had an immediate

Joseph K. McNew, D.V.M • Linda Galbraith, D.V.M. • Jessica Jones, D.V.M.

impact. The Justice Department edict not only called Alabama out on overcrowding, but they also addressed the excessive violence and the lack of mental health treatment among the inmates. However, they hung their hat on the constitutional rights that Alabama’s prisoners are not being provided adequate human conditions of confinement. Therefore, the cornerstone solution is three new mega men’s prisons. Governor Ivey took the bull by the horns and made an executive decision to proceed without legislative approval or input. She made the decision quietly and without discussion or hesitancy to go with private developers to build three men’s new correction facilities. The proposed sites are in Bibb, Elmore and Escambia Counties. The Department of Corrections already has major prisons in all three of these counties, which makes it a logical decision. Three separate prime developers have

been chosen by the governor to finance, build and maintain the three prisons that the state would lease and operate. The states’ cost for leasing these facilities would be capped at a total of $88 million a year. The Department of Corrections and the Governor say they can pay for the leases on new prisons through cost savings. A good many legislators do not like Governor Ivey’s unilateral decision to proceed with contracting for new prisons without their consent. This is a big-ticket item that the legislature would like to be involved with since they are responsible for the funding and balancing of the state’s budgets. The legislature will also need to address other issues outlined in the Department of Justice edict. This major issue of overcrowding seems to be a big tar-baby that the state legislature and governor have to focus on and resolve in the year 2021. See you next week.


FRIDAY — JANUARY 22, 2020

THE SOUTHERN TORCH

7

DeKalb County Basketball Tournament By Marla Jones, Sports Editor marla@southerntorch.com

RAINSVILLE, Ala. — The DeKalb County Basketball Tournament kicked off on Monday with the #1 Plainview Varsity Boys defeating thr #8 Valley Head Tigers, 83-40. Jonah Williams led the Bears with 39 points. Ethan Bain led with 16 points for the Tigers. Plainview will face the Sylvania Rams, who defeated the Collinsville Panthers, on Friday night. The Rams defeated the Panthers, 68-54 with Jarrett Hill leading the Rams with 24 points. Colton Wills had 29 points for Collinsville. On Monday, the Plainview Lady Bears defeated Valley Head, 90-28. Lauren Jimmerson led the Lady Bears with 21 points. Lydia Crane led the Valley Head Lady Tigers with nine points. The Plainview Lady Bears will face the Ider Hornets, who defeated Geraldine on Tuesday, 70-54, on Thursday night at 6 p.m. On Monday, the Fyffe Red Devils defeated Crossville, 77-26. Micah Johnson led Fyffe with 20 points, while Landon Cox had 16 for the Lions. The Red Devils will advance to the semi-final round on Friday night where they will face the Geraldine Bulldogs, who beat Ider, 92-49.

ALL-COUNTY FOOTBALL

UT Lets Pruitt Go

By Marla Jones Sports Editor marla@southerntorch.com (Kristy Gallagher | AHSAA)

PICTURED (no particular order): Ty Bell, Malachi Mize, Eli Benefield, Justin Stiefel, Kyle Dukes, Chase Wooten, Levi Carroll, Jacob Mitchell (Fyffe); Marcos Vega, Noah White, Brody McCurdy, Jathan Underwood, Mason Cooper, Ethan Hope, Bryson Richey (Plainview); Jordan Burt, Bryson Morgan, Luke Harrison, Hayden Fletcher, Eian Bain, Levi DeMarco (Valley Head); Caleb Hall, Caleb Benefield, Garrett Barclay, Anthony Baldwin (Geraldine); Brayden Harris, Keenan Wilbanks, Sawyer Hughes, Braiden Thomas (Sylvania); Blake Sparks, Dalton Hughes, Malachi Orr (Collinsville); Ernesto Lopez, Hunter Haston, Colton Adkins (Crossville); Hunter Robinson, Matt Norman, Jesse Massey (Ider). Player of the Year: Brody Dalton (Fyffe); Offensive MVP: Ike Rowell (Fyffe); Defensive MVP: Caleb Lyles (Fyffe) (Kristy Gallagher | AHSAA)

CHEER PICTURED (no particular order): Sydney Skelton (Collinsville); Briley Buttram, Emma Dalton, Alyssa Howell, Aubrey Jones, Cassidy Lance, Ava Smith, Haylin Veal (Fyffe); Dessa Faulkner, Taylor Hill (Geraldine); Emma Hayes, Makinley Traylor (Ider); Katie Bryan, Caroline Cooper, Ellie White (Plainview); Isabella Corbin, Gabriela Green, Ava Howell, Abby Shrader (Sylvania); Emma Harrison (Valley Head).

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — After weeks of speculation in potential recruiting violations, the University of Tennessee made the decision to let head football coach, Jeremy Pruitt go. Pruitt was hired by the program in 2017. He finishes his career with an overall record of 16-19. A notice of intent to terminate letter was sent to Pruitt by University of Tennessee officials on Monday. The school said in a statement that in addition to Pruitt, it also issued termination letters to assistant coaches Brian Niedermeyer and

Shelton Felton, four members of the on-campus football recruiting staff, the director and assistant director of football player personnel and a football analyst. "While the investigation is continuing, the information presented to us indicates serious violations of NCAA rules, they occurred and that these serious infractions warrant immediate action," UT chancellor Donde Plowman stated to ESPN. “While I would like today to lay out the entirety of what has been shared with us, the fact is I cannot while the investigation continues. When we can do so, without compromising the investigation and without violating NCAA bylaws, we will do that.�



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8

FRIDAY — JANUARY 22, 2020

THE SOUTHERN TORCH

AUCTIONS UNITED 

COURT ORDERED SALE

by The Circuit Court of DeKalb County, AL

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CONTACT MARLA AT

256.638.4040 • 256.605.4427 marla@southerntorch.com

Real Estate Terms: A 10% Buyers Premium will be added to the highest bid and will be paid the day of the sale. The balance is due at closing on January 8, 2019. Office Furniture & Property Terms: A 10% Buyers Premium will be added to the highest bid. The total amount will be due the day of the sale.

(800) 222-5003 AUCTIONSUNITED.COM

For more information, call Jim Givens at Auctions United (800-222-5003), Wilson Realty (256-845-1530), Randy Wilson (256-997-6972), or Beau Wilson (256-844-7298).

LOCATION: The Main Street Plaza Shopping Center is located at 200 Main Street West in Rainsville, AL. The Rainsville Finance property is located at 180 Main Street West in Rainsville, LA. (Next to the Main Street Plaza Shopping Center). ALL INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THIS BROCHURE WAS DERIVED FROM SOURCES BELIEVED TO BE CORRECT, BUT IS NOT GUARANTEED. ANY ANNOUNCEMENT MADE FROM THE AUCTION STAND SHALL TAKE PRECEDENCE OVER ANY PRINTED MATTER IN THIS BROCHURE.

16 Commerce Court, Rome, Ga. • James Givens, AL Broker Lic. Q4D 8246 • James Givens, AAL 1218

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