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Vicksburg, Warren County residents show their resilience during trying time

Although Vicksburg residents experienced water outages and power outages this week, residents still experienced positive happenings in the River City.

The Vicksburg Catholic School got some help from a group of a half-dozen parents and local officials who rigged up a giant pump system to keep the school’s sanitation system functional. Powered by a towboat pump and two large water tankers, the system worked by replacing the city’s water supply with water from two large tanks. An 18-wheeler with a 10,000-gallon tanker trailer provided water for St. Francis Elementary School, and a smaller 1,000-gallon tank did so for St. Aloysius High School.

“It is unbelievable that we have that many talented people who have the resources to make it happen,” VCS principal Buddy Strickland said. “There’s no price tag you can put on it. We are ever so grateful for their expertise.”

The Warren County Fire Department helped make sure the Vicksburg Fire Department was prepared during the water crisis by moving resources closer to the city. They also provided water to Promise Hospital to keep the air conditioner running and the county jail to flush toilets.

More positive happenings in Vicksburg this week:

  • Vicksburg opened its newest walking trail Saturday with a ribbon cutting ceremony at Halls Ferry Park. The route is a 3/4-mile walking trail that goes around the main parking area at Halls Ferry Park, the tennis courts and baseball and softball fields. It also features benches and two water stations, one to allow people to fill their water bottles, and another that is handicap accessible.
  • The Vicksburg Warren School District has been designated as a Ford Next Generation Learning program community.

“This is huge for us,” Vicksburg Warren Schools Superintendent Chad Shealy said. The Ford NGL program is a five-phase, approximately three-year program aimed at transforming existing secondary education into an educational program that prepares students for life, college and other careers.

According to a Ford facilitator, the program’s results include students being better prepared for college and careers, and the community’s labor force being strengthened for the future.

“When you talk about Vicksburg and where it’s going, I hear all the time that ‘I want it to be as good as it was,’” Shealy said. “We’re about to be something we’ve never been before. This community is about to be the answer for a lot of things across the nation and people are looking at us. Any school system is only as good as the people that are in it (and) we have a fantastic community.”