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Local and Regional News 051624


Traffic Fatality


A pedestrian who was struck by a car in the West Memphis area last week has died.


Arkansas State Police report that 60-year-od Rodney Raper of West Memphis was attempting to cross East Broadway in West Memphis around 10:40 p.m. on May 7th when he was hit by an eastbound car.


Mr. Raper was transported to Regional One in Memphis where he later died.


The police report noted that road conditions were dry at the time of the accident.



FC Phone Scam


A Forrest City woman told police that she was victimized in a recent phone scam.


The 60-year-old woman told Forrest City PD that someone claiming to be from Publisher’s Clearing House called her back in March saying that she’d won $9.5 million and a 2024 Mercedes.


The caller instructed the woman to send $800 and to open a bank account that her winnings could be deposited into.


The woman said she sent the money and complied with all the instructions, but said the calls kept coming.


She said that seven different callers contacted her, repeatedly asking her to send more money in the form of a Green Money Card from a local dollar store.


Police are investigating.



Earthquake Recorded


An earthquake was recorded early this (Thursday) morning in northwest Tennessee. (Channel 8, Jonesboro)


According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), a magnitude 3.8 earthquake was recorded at 3:19 a.m. in Dyer County, Tenn.


The USGS reported that the epicenter was approximately 4.3 miles south of Ridgely, Tennessee.


As of 4 a.m., 110 people had reported feeling the earthquake, including residents in Caruthersville, Missouri and in southern Illinois.


Go to the USGS website for the latest information.



Probation Officer Position Open


The First Judicial District of Arkansas, Juvenile Division, is seeking a full time Juvenile Probation Officer for Cross and Woodruff counties.


This position is responsible for providing supervision for juveniles entering the Juvenile Justice System through Probation or Diversion Programs.


Job duties include the following:

1. Maintain regular office hours, with occasional after hours/weekend on-call hours as needed.

2. Meet with juvenile and their families on a regular basis to monitor compliance, as well as maintain contact with other parties involved in the case.

3. Maintain up-to-date case files and database entries, draft documents, provide written & verbal court reports and testify in court.


Minimum Qualifications for applicants are:


1. Bachelor’s Degree in sociology, psychology, criminology or related field OR equivalent experience in a field related to youth/law enforcement.

2. Must pass criminal background check and child maltreatment check and be free of any serious violations.

3. Must pass pre-employment drug screen.

4. Must maintain a valid Arkansas Driver’s License.

5. Must be proficient in Microsoft Office; experience in Contexte preferred; good reading/writing skills essential. 


Please send resumes to



Summer Work Program


The Urban and Community Forestry Society (UCFS) is now registering area youth for a 10-week summer work program.


Participants must be 16 to 18 years old and reside in St. Francis, Lee, Phillips or Monroe counties.


The program will provide fun work-based learning, structural training and career introductions. Workers will be paid $15 per hour for up to 26 hours per week.


The UCFS is a membership-based group dedicated to helping residents grow and care for the trees in their community.


For more information about the organization, visit


To register for the work program, call the East Arkansas Regional Youth Employment Initiative in Forrest City at 870-667-1758.


The deadline to register is May 24th.



FCHS Scholarship Numbers


Congratulations to the Forrest City High School Class of 2024 for earning more than $13 million in scholarship offers.


This year's class had four Million Dollar Scholars:


--Salutatorian Kagan Word led with $3,160,000 in scholarship offers.

--My'Lan Harper had the second highest total with $1,539,000

--Alicia Taylor was third with $1,536,290

--Co-Valedictorian Nia Williams was the fourth Million Dollar Scholar with $1,280,650 in scholarship offers





--The Forrest City School Board will meet Thursday (5/16) at 5:30 p.m. in the Jr. High School Library.


--The East Arkansas Community College Board of Trustees will meet Thursday (5/16) at 6 p.m. in the EACC Boardroom.


--The Lee County School District, along with the Lee County Cooperative Clinic will be hosting an immunization/registration clinic at the Lee High School Parent Center, May 17th from 1-3 p.m. Parents must be present for scholars to receive the necessary immunizations. They will also be conducting early registration for the 2024-25 school year.


--The Preservation of African American Cemeteries organization will hold its 15th “Memorial in May” Cemetery Preservation Regional Conference, May 17-18 at the Mississippi River State Park, Multi-Purpose Center in Marianna. The conference theme is “Cemeteries of Lee County: Revealing the History of Early Black Communities”. The Convention will be hosted by the Lee County Cemetery Association. The conference is free, but registration is required. For more information, contact Katie Jones at 870-494-5731 or R.E. Lee Jr. at 904-328-0645.


--The Forrest City High School 2024 ESPY Awards will be held Monday, May 20, beginning at 6 p.m. at The Grand Venue, located at 2615 South Washington St. Come out in your Semi-Formal All Black Attire & Sneakers and help celebrate our 2023-24 athletes and their accomplishments. For more information call 633-1464.


--A representative from Legal Aid of Arkansas will be at the Forrest City Public Library Tuesday (5/21) from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Call the library at 870-633-5646 to make an appointment.


--Forrest City Country Club will host a 2-Man Scramble Golf Tournament, May 25 and 26. Play starts at 1pm on Saturday and Sunday. Entry fee is $250 per team that includes practice round, shrimp boil dinner, Calcutta and will feature a Ducks Unlimited Silent Auction fundraiser. For more information, contact Kirk Billingsley at 901-218-3955 or Matt Howton at 870-270-7371.


--Ridgecrest Golf Club in Forrest City will host a Four Ball golf tournament, June 1-2. The event will feature 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. tee times, with Calcutta & dinner. First place:  $1,200, Second place:  $800 and Third Place:  $400. For more information, contact Jackie McKennon at 870-866-5823 or Tony Downey at 870-270-0361.





--Funeral service for Dale Lynn Emmerson, 73, of Forrest City will be Thursday (5/16) at 10 a.m. at Stevens Funeral Home Chapel. Burial will follow at Forrest Park Cemetery. Stevens Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.


--Funeral service for Eva McClure, 82, of Forrest City will be Friday (5/17) at 11 a.m. at New Light MB Church. Burial will follow at Stanley Grove Cemetery in Caldwell. Visitation will be Thursday from 4-6 p.m. at New Eden Funeral Home Chapel. New Eden Funeral Home of Forrest City is in charge of arrangements.


--Funeral service for Jordan Harold Breathett Jr., 78, of Chicago, formerly of Forrest City will be Saturday (5/18) at 11 a.m. in the chapel of Miles Mortuary. Buial will follow at Jericho Church Cemetery. Miles Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.


--Funeral service for Queen Ester Burnett, 80, of Brinkley will be Saturday (5/18) at 11 a.m. at the Brinkley Convention Center. Burial will follow at St. John Cemetery in Brinkley. Public viewing will be Saturday from 10 a.m. until the time of the service at the Brinkley Convention Center. McNeal-Coleman Funeral Home of Brinkley is in charge of arrangements.


--Funeral service for Frederick Smith, 78, of Forrest City will be Saturday (5/18) at 12 p.m. at the Forrest City Civic Center. Burial will follow at Forrest Park Cemetery. Visitation will be Friday from 5-7 p.m. at Miles Mortuary, which is in charge of arrangements.


--Funeral service for Francis Humphrey, 87, of Forrest City will be Saturday (5/18) at 1 p.m. at Saints' Temple Church of God in Christ. Burial will follow at El Cannon Cemetery. Visitation will be Friday from 2-4 p.m. at Miles Mortuary, which is in charge of arrangements.





--Arkansas Baseball--


University of Arkansas ace Hagen Smith will aim to keep the Razorbacks unbeaten in weekend openers tonight (Thursday) at No. 4 Texas A&M.


But the Arkansas rotation will undergo a shakeup after that, Coach Dave Van Horn announced Wednesday.


For only the second time all season, Smith will not be followed by the combination of right-hander Brady Tygart (4-3, 3.86) and lefty Mason Molina (3-2, 4.44), who have struggled in recent outings.


Van Horn announced that sophomore right-hander Gage Wood (3-1, 3.03) will take the mound for Friday's 7 p.m. game, and he will leave the starting pitcher for Saturday's regular season finale up in the air.


The No. 2 Razorbacks (42-10, 19-8 SEC) and the Aggies (42-10, 17-10) will battle for the SEC West title over the weekend, and both teams are still eligible to win the overall SEC championship.


One win will clinch the division for Arkansas, which has won or shared four of the past five West titles.




The application deadline for the Registered Nursing Traditional Track program at East Arkansas Community College has been extended until Monday, May 20th at 4 p.m.


In addition to the application, the required testing and documentation must be submitted to the Allied Health Office Building by May 20th as well.


For more information or to schedule your entrance exam, call 870-633-4480, ext. 408 or email


A Healthcare Provider CPR course will be offered at EACC on Thursday, June 6th.


The class teaches CPR skills including ventilation with a barrier device, a bag-mask device, and oxygen; use of an automated external defibrillator; and relief of foreign-body airway obstruction.


For more information or to register, call 870-633-4480, ext. 333.



PW School News


The Palestine-Wheatley School District will present student awards this Friday, May 17th at the high school cafeteria.


Awards for students in grades 7 & 8 will be presented at 8:30 a.m. and awards for grades 9-12 will be at 10 a.m.


The Palestine-Wheatley School District will offer FREE physicals to athletes for the 2024-25 school year in grades 8 -12 on May 16. This will include band students.


Contact your child’s school for information on how to access the online physical form. Only students with completed forms will receive physicals.



ASP Seat Belt Campaign


Arkansas state and local law enforcement officers are joining the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in urging drivers to buckle up ahead of the national Click It or Ticket high-visibility seat belt enforcement effort.


The campaign coincides with the Memorial Day holiday, running from May 20 to June 2.


State safety officials reminds citizens that buckling up is not just a safe thing to do, it’s the law.


During the Click It or Ticket campaign, the law enforcement community will be working to ensure the message gets out to drivers and passengers that “injuries and lost lives can be prevented by simply wearing a seat belt.”


In 2023, the seat belt use rate in Arkansas was 79.7%, which is well below the national seat belt use rate of 91.9%.


Participating law enforcement agencies will be taking a no-excuses approach to seat belt law enforcement, writing citations day and night.


For more information on the Click It or Ticket campaign, please visit



EACC Registration Underway


Priority registration is underway for the upcoming summer and fall terms at East Arkansas Community College.


Advising and testing for new students are available on campus and virtually.


Call 870-633-4480, ext. 252 or email to schedule an appointment for testing or to meet with an advisor.


Summer I term classes will begin on Tuesday, May 28th.

Red Cross Blood Appeal


The American Red Cross is asking the public to give blood during Trauma Awareness Month in May to keep hospitals prepared for all transfusion needs, including emergencies.


Type O blood donors and donors giving platelets are especially needed right now.

•       Type O negative is the universal blood type and what emergency room personnel reach for when there is no time to determine a patient’s blood type in the most serious situations.

•       Type O positive blood is the most used blood type because it can be transfused to Rh-positive patients of any blood type.

•       Platelets are often needed to help with clotting in cases of massive bleeding.


Those who come to give through May 19 will be automatically entered for a chance to win a trip for two to the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series races at Darlington Raceway Labor Day weekend.


Book a time to give now by visiting, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App.



EACC Summer Programs


The Community Education and Workforce Development programs at East Arkansas Community College have announced the Summer Schedule of classes for students of all ages.


The schedule offers a wide variety of unique Kids on Campus programs and camps including: Children’s Theater Camp, Pickleball, Junior Golf, Basketball, Spike-it Volleyball, Youth Horseback Riding, Gymnastics and much more.


There are also classes designed for specific age groups, including

Preschool-ages 3 and 4; Kindergarten through 2nd grade; and for students in grades 3 through 8.


Also, the Personal Interests and Senior Sage (students aged 50+) classes for adults include Yoga, Water Aerobics, Conditioning, Applied Piano, and more. 


The schedule for Professional Development classes includes Healthcare Provider CPR intended for participants who provide healthcare to patients in a variety of settings.


The complete schedule of Summer classes is available online at  Pre-registration is required for all classes and events.


Tuition waivers are available for credit classes for students aged 50+ and discounts are available for children who register for 3 or more classes. 


For more information about classes, fees, and locations, please call 870-633-4480 ext. 333.



School News


The Forrest City School District is looking for college students with 60 credit hours or above or individuals with 60+ college credit hours to work in their 2024 Freedom School Program as a Summer School Intern.


Interested applicants should send their resume and unofficial transcript to Forrest City Superintendent Dr. Tiffany Hardrick at


Lee High School in Marianna has been presented with an amazing opportunity for their Class of 2025 scholars who are interested in the medical field to participate in a six-week camp this summer at UAPB.


Selected scholars can earn $375 a week. Weekly transportation will be provided. Scholars will participate in activities throughout their senior year and earn a $2,500 scholarship towards college upon completion.


Call Lee High School at 870-295-7130 for more information.

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