The Week in Vicksburg

Published 12:00 am Thursday, December 14, 2000

Week of December 4, 2000

Seasonable weather was the rule during the week with frost seen several mornings. Daytime temperatures ranged from 40 degrees to 57 while at night the thermometer gave readings that varied from a 25 degrees to 38. Rainfall was measured at 0.04 inch one day.

The Mississippi River continued to fall during the week, dropping from a reading of 11.2 feet on the Vicksburg gauge to 9.1 feet by week’s end. Forecasters believed the river would reach a level of about 7.6 feet by today.

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The advisory board for the Vicksburg Convention Center looked at the proposals submitted by Compass Facility Management and the SMG Corp. to take on management of the three-year-old facility. They found wide variation in the bottom-line figures, but found money from the city would still be needed. Some members said they’d need additional information before they could make a recommendation.

Vicksburg officials awarded the contract for widening the intersection of Mission 66 and Clay Street to J.B. Talley Inc. of St. Martinville, La. They also awarded a contract to resurface North Washington Street to APAC of Mississippi.

Officials of PolyVulc USA Inc. said they were being forced to lay off about half of the company’s 43 employees because of a drop in demand for some of their products. They said they hoped they would be able to recall the workers after Jan. 1.

Officials at the Warren County Health Department said the long-awaited flu vaccines would arrive within days. They asked those not in the high-risk groups to wait a week or so before getting their shots.

Mario Lush of Port Gibson died when the pickup he was riding in was hit from behind on U.S. 61 South about 10 miles south of Vicksburg. Larry Thompson of Warren County was the driver of the other vehicle.

Many of the remaining members of Company B 106th Engineers of the 31st Infantry Dixie Division gathered in Vicksburg to mark the 60th anniversary of being called up prior to World War II.

Jimmy Heidel, executive vice president of the Vicksburg Warren County Chamber of Commerce, believes Warren County will get some spinoff industries from the Nissan plant that will be built in Canton. He also said there’s a possibility existing industries will be able to do business either with the plant or some of its suppliers.

Retired police Capt. Clyde Harris was appointed by the Mayor and Aldermen of the City of Vicksburg as a member of the Civil Service Commission. He is the first former police officer named to the commission.

Warren County Supervisors approved a contract with the Central Mississippi Planning and Development District for help in redrawing the districts from which supervisors, school board members, justice court judges and constables are elected. The district changes will be needed after the 2000 census information is released in 2001.

The Rev. Eric Thomas, pastor of the First Baptist Church, was out of town for several days on a peace mission to Israel. Traveling with a group of nine other ministers put together by Discovery Ministries, Thomas was to meet and pray with the mayor of Jerusalem, president of Israel and at least one former prime minister.

Officials at the International Paper Vicksburg Mill announced plans to shut down one final time in 2000. The mill’s fourth shutdown was blamed on inventory oversupply that has plagued the company all year.

The wreck of an 18-wheeler on the Interstate 20 bridge over the Mississippi held up traffic in the westbound lanes for several hours Tuesday. The truck driver said a blowout caused the wreck.

The Children’s Health Insurance Program to provide health insurance to children who need it suffers from an image problem, said Sean Courtney, director of the Mississippi Consumer Assistance Program. Courtney was speaking at a community forum at the Good Shepherd Community Center.

A Warren County trial jury returned a verdict of guilty of child abuse against Crystal Buffington at the end of a two-day trial. Buffington was accused of beating her daughter. Judge Frank Vollor set sentencing for later this week.

Vicksburg’s Riverfront Park has become so popular with local residents and visitors as a place to visit and picnic that the present facilities have become crowded. As a result the City of Vicksburg has decided to build two new pavilions on the site.

Greg Ross, Marquis McCroy, Josef Buchanan and Kevin Palmer entered guilty pleas in federal district court and will be sentenced in April. The four were accused of the attempted armed robbery of the Mutual Credit Union branch at Waterways Experiment Station.

The antebellum home Anchuca, which has been operated for years as a bed and breakfast inn, is on the sale block and was to be auctioned with its contents. Loveta Byrne, the owner, said she wanted to sell the house because she wanted to spend more time with her family.

Local deaths during the week were Willie Louis Donerson Sr., Brenda Joyce Wallace, Hazel Davis Melsheimer, Sue D. Wilson, Ricky Youmans, Mary Lou Davis Burnett, Cornelious Drew “C.D.” Smith Sr., James “Bud” Wade Jr., Joseph Lewis DeMent, John A. Kelly Sr., Charles Eric Fowler, Mary Lee Newman, Marie L. Ver Beck, Jean McNay Bird, Louis Brady, the Rev. Jimmy Conn and Harold Junior Tinnin.