Linda M Howland Nellie B Hayslip Russell E Bailey Gladys M Perdue Commissioners meet in Columbus with DP&L CEO Tom Raga Missing the Dirtrollers The farms that aren’t forgotten Flora Hilderbran Commissioners to meet with DP&L officials New state graduation requirements called a ‘train wreck’ Catching up with Keller Senior Profile: Justin Knechtly Piketon size is too much for Lady Indians, Peebles falls in sectional finals Greyhounds grab Senior Night win Indians finish regular season riding six-game winning streak Harper, Hupp, Defense lead Lady Devils to fourth consecutive sectional championship West Union Elementary recognizes Students of the Month for January Second Healthy Hero awarded by Adams County Health and Wellness Coalition Coal company files to intervene in power plant closings Senior Profile: Jessica Sowards Senior Profile: Dennis Welch Dorothy E Walls Mabel Chamblin Michael R Jones Marie I Simmons Ray Johnson One thing to remember this President’s Day Adams County Deer Harvest down over 21% MLSD amends five-year budget, prepares for future with power plant closings Lady Dragons triumph in sectional opener Lady Hounds eighth graders capture SHAC Tournament title Gary L Fetters Sr Boys Sectional brackets released ‘We’re only as good as the way we treat others’ Another round of smiles Adams County Board of DD members recognized Terry L Unger 8th Grade Lady Devils ousted in tourney semis WU’s McCarty signs with Ohio Christian Joyce A Huddleson Carolyn Spires BREAKING NEWS: Peebles police search for man accused of selling marijuana-laced sweets Decision Time BBN Senior Profile: Summer Grundy Lady Devils fall to Southeastern, 56-48 Devils outlast Manchester 47-44 in double overtime Peebles holds second Hall of Fame Ceremony Senior Profile: Patrick England Sowards hits 1,000, ties PHS three-point mark County agencies prepare for sweeping budget cuts Manchester Council votes to cut police chief’s hours Wrestling debuts in Adams County Peebles Library hosts book signing As plants power down, community must step up Raymond P Dryden Alva Palmer Billie L Shoemaker Judith Long Brent A Arn Girls basketball sectional pairings announced WU’s Weeks will continue gridiron career at next level West Union JH Boys drop pair at Ripley Eighth Grade Lady Hounds roll into SHAC semi-finals Janet A Kennedy DP&L moving ahead with plans to close power plants Outreach Center in Peebles is a hub of giving River Sweep contest winners announced Gordley hits 1,000 mark, but Indians drop crucial SHAC contest to Lynchburg Manchester lifters compete at Piketon Senior Profile: Madelyn Sanders Charles L Hurd Randy Casto Bobby Strunk Dorothy J Scott Chester A Lanter Coach David Smalley picks up 500th career win at Rio Grande Dustin Holbrook Senior Profile: Camron Gordley As usual, optimism abounds on 2017 Reds Caravan Breeze, Beasley newest members of NAHS Athletic HOF Two humble men Adams County Manor Home Health Care makes road to recovery easier Don and Venita Bowles named as Outstanding Fair Supporters ‘Tip off For Tammy’ is a huge success, joint effort by two schools Husted campaign makes stop in Peebles Benefit held for double-lung transplant recipient I loved that muddy water, building in the creek Margaret E Broughton Larry A Hanson DP&L press release confirms closing of power plants Eighth grade girls showdown lives up to hype, North Adams wins in overtime, 45-43 Senior Profile: Raeanna Stamm North Adams Football sign-ups coming soon North Adams JV girls go 11-4 with win over Peebles Harper wins MaxPreps/JJHuddle Athlete of the Week West Union duo headed to the college gridiron Lady Devils make it 11 straight with win at Peebles Adams County residents attend Trump Inauguration A Look back at our Archives Peebles native comes home to film documentary

Keller’s Night in Peebles

A standing-room-only crowd of basketball fans raised an astounding $37,000 during the “Black Out Cancer” benefit held for Keller Beech Wilson during the North Adams/Peebles game on Friday, Jan. 29. Keller is the three-year-old son of Jennifer Beech and Kyle Wilson, of Peebles.

“We are absolutely amazed by everyone’s generosity,” said event organizer, Mandy Knechtly. Knechtly, along with Carisa Kremin and Misty Arey, all of Peebles, organized the fund raiser after Keller was diagnosed with a rare form of A.L.L. Leukemia in early January.

The evening’s fund raising events included: a silent auction of donated items, the live auction of two basketballs signed by Keller and the members of both basketball teams and cheerleading squads, the selling of Black “Keller Strong” t-shirts, the selling of Southern Ohio Beard Society T-shirts and a 50/50 Split the Pot Raffle.

The highlight of the evening, a live skyping event with Keller and his parents, brought the crowd to their feet as the family’s image was projected in real time onto the wall of the gymnasium.

“It was an extraordinary night,” said Kremin, “We owe special thanks to Mr. Vogler and Scout Kremin for successfully bringing off the Skyping event, I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house.”

A “Be The Match” Bone Marrow Donor Drive was held throughout the evening. Seventy-nine people registered. “We had a wonderful night at the BE THE MATCH table,” said Beth Seaman, of Peebles, “Dannie Moore, representative from BE THE MATCH, said the night was a huge success. She said the average drive turns out around 25 donors, and we more than tripled that. And I’m still collecting swab kits. People of all ages came to visit us on Friday. We had people that were too young ask about registering to donate. We encouraged them to register with BE THE MATCH when they turn 18. Only those between 18-44 can register at donor drives, but anyone between the ages of 18-60 can request to have a kit sent to them through the mail by visiting the link http://join.bethematch.org/save2match16. Please keep in mind that anyone between the ages 45-60 will be assessed a $100 fee to register. It’s truly amazing the selfless act of so many.”

The evening was a demonstration of community cooperation at it’s best.

“Two communities came together to show what living in Adams County is all about,” posted Amy Huffman Swango on the PHS Boosters Facebook page. “Not Red or Green, but a sea of black raised over $12,000 for our little hero, Keller.”

Timothy Morrison of Seaman, also posted on the NA Boosters FaceBook page. “What an awesome turnout tonight at Peebles HS. I am proud of both our schools and our teams. What a great night to come out to help support Keller and his family. The money that was raised to help was great. Tonight was a win for Keller and the ball signed by both teams and cheerleaders was awesome. I am proud of our communities and our county. It was great night to help a great cause.”

The live auction, conducted by auctioneer Dean Brown raised $5,200. The autographed NA basketball was purchased by Deirdre Hutchinson Mills and the staff at NA Elementary School for $1,207. The winning bid for the autographed Peebles basketball went to the following businesses for $2,000: Ty Pell Surveying, Dean Brown-Auctioneer, McFarland Blacktop Sealing, Swango Logging, Lloyd Excavating, Roy Willman, Carla Wesley – Meigs Twp Fiscal Officer, Dr. David and Jodi Parrett, Peebles Youth Basketball, OK Auto Parts, County Line Carry Out, and Moose and Brenda Brown.

The afghan embroidered with “Keller Strong” was purchased by Jeanmarie Decker, Alton Swayne, and the Athletic Boosters for $2,000. The First State Bank kicked off the Split the Pot drawing with a $100 donation. The drawing, which raised $2,000, was won by Shawn R Hudge,l who donated the winnings back to the Keller.

The Silent Auction raised $3,900. “We are so grateful to everyone who donated items for the silent auction,” said organizer Misty Arey, “The people who placed bids were incredibly generous, we all feel so blessed to be able to do this for Keller and his family.”

The Southern Ohio Beard Society raised $1,100, and the Athletic Boosters concessions another $1,000. All of the “Keller Strong” T-shirts sold out in the first ten minutes. The remaining funds were individual donations of money presented to the Keller Strong benefit throughout the evening.

“There are things more important than basketball and you saw that tonight,” said Peebles boys varsity coach Josh Arey. “We appreciated both crowds tonight and it was a wonderful atmosphere.”

Donations and ideas for fundraisers are still coming in.

Emily Young posted the following on her Facebook page: Coin Wars! Calling all COINS!!!! Okay friends, West Union Elementary School is collecting Coins for Keller. Keller Beech Wilson is the 3- year old son of our fourth grade teacher Jennifer Beech. Each homeroom’s collections will be weighed daily, with the winning classroom earning a pizza party. My third graders are very competitive, so I’m asking all my friends to clean out their couches, empty the bottom of their purses, clean out the cup holders in your car, and donate! We have until Feb. 12 to collect all your spare change. PS— If our school raises $2000 we have a promise that a certain principal will shave his head.

To donate to the Keller Strong fund, or to purchase “Keller Strong” T-shirts, contact Carisa Kremin at 937-779-7648, Misty Arey at 937-798-1733, or Mandy Knechtly at 937-470-3986.

Keller and his parents were able to join the fun at Friday night’s game and benefit via Skyping.
http://www.peoplesdefender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/web1_Keller1.jpgKeller and his parents were able to join the fun at Friday night’s game and benefit via Skyping. Mark Carpenter | People’s Defender

The North Adams and Peebles cheerleading squads together led the crowd in a spirited “Keller Strong” cheer.
http://www.peoplesdefender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/web1_Keller2.jpgThe North Adams and Peebles cheerleading squads together led the crowd in a spirited “Keller Strong” cheer. Mark Carpenter | People’s Defender

These young students from North Adams Elementary made a number of signs showing their support for the evening’s cause.
http://www.peoplesdefender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/web1_Keller3.jpgThese young students from North Adams Elementary made a number of signs showing their support for the evening’s cause. Mark Carpenter | People’s Defender
Community benefit raises $37,000

By Patricia Beech

pbeech@civitasmedia.com

Reach Patricia Beech at 937-544-2391 or at pbeech@civitasmedia.com

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2016 People's Defender