Five Cenla residents arrested on drug charges

By Everything Cenla staff

Five Central Louisiana residents were booked into the Rapides Parish Jail on drug charges after sheriff’s deputies arrested them at a home believed to be a meth lab, according to the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office.

The arrests were made at 469 Louisiana Highway 1206 in Deville. The report indicates the parish’s criminal interdiction deputies used an arrest warrant to enter the property. When they arrived, the five suspects allegedly ran from deputies causing a chase that went through a shed, which deputies reported as being a partially built meth lab.

Deputies caught all five of the suspects then search the building where they allegedly found two additional meth labs.

Those arrested are:

Kristen Futrell, 20, of 114 Maid Marion Dr. Dry Prong

Brala Everett, 20 , of 657 Gene Gunter Rd. Deville

Kyle Giardina,38, of 469  HWY 1206 Deville, La.

Robert Maxwell, 24, of 141 Worwick Rd., Jena

Bryan McCormick,26, of 469 Hwy 1206 Deville

State police suspect alcohol a factor in Natchitoches Parish fatal crash

By Everything Cenla staff

Lauren D. Delrie,  21, of Chopin, was killed in a one-vehicle accident  early Sunday morning when the vehicle she was in went off of the right side of Louisiana Highway 490 and hit a tree, according to Louisiana State Police Troop E.

Delrie was pronounced dead at the scene, and the driver, Joseph D. Delarcerda, 21, also of Chopin, was seriously injured.

State Police report the accident occurred about 9:15 a.m. east of Interstate 49. Delarcerda was driving a 1997 Honda Accord eastward on Highway 490 when he lost control of the vehicle resulting in it hitting a tree on the right side of the highway.

Delarcerda or Delrie were not wearing seatbelts. Delarcerda was taken to Rapides Regional Medical Center for treatment.

Routine toxicology tests and charges are pending. The crash remains under investigation.

Rodney Alexander receives Guardian of Small Business Award

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), the nation’s leading small business association, today named U.S. Rep. Rodney Alexander, R-Quitman, a Guardian of Small Business for his outstanding voting record on behalf of America’s small business owners in the 111th Congress.

NFIB President and CEO Dan Danner, who presented Alexander with the decoration, said “In the 111th Congress, Representative Alexander proved that he is a champion of small business. The Guardian of Small Business Award is a token of the deep appreciation that small business owners have for elected officials who promote and protect their right to own, operate and grow their businesses.”

Alexander said he was pleased to receive this important recognition.

“I am proud to be named a Guardian and vow to do everything I can to keep the American Dream alive,” said Alexander.

“These days, small businesses are hesitant to hire and scared to expand due to the uncertainty created by Washington’s harmful policies. It frustrates me to imagine how many potential entrepreneurs and small business owners have been discouraged because our tax policies hamper the entrepreneurial spirit.

“Especially during these trying times, raising taxes will essentially eliminate even more jobs; it will bring job creation and economic recovery to screeching halts. When approximately 15 million individuals remain unemployed, for us to continue down this reckless path is unfathomable.”

Dropping out of the race would show real leadership

By Leonard Ford
Columnist, The Light

It is no secret that I’ve been hoping and praying that at least one or more of the four blacks vying for the mayor’s seat in the City of Alexandria would gracefully drop out of the race.

So far it’s only a wish, but I remain hopeful that Von Jennings, Roosevelt Johnson, the Rev. Joseph Franklin or Jay Johnson would see the light for the good of Alexandria’s mankind.

It appears my hopes may be dwindling as time is almost near and each candidate is putting out signs, circulating printed materials, participating in forums, launching Web sites and staging fundraisers. I fear no one will throw in the towel and call it quits.

However, just in case one or two heeds my call in order to give the best qualified candidate among them a chance to defeat Jacques Roy, I have developed the perfect statement to use in announcing to the public reasons for getting out of the race.

Here is that statement:

“After much thoughtful consideration and discussion with my family, friends, and supporters, I am here today to tell you that I have officially withdrawn my candidacy for mayor of Alexandria, but I have done so with great regret.  As much as I would like to lead the progress of Alexandria over the next four years, and as I strongly as I believe  I have the qualifications, experience, vision, and  ideas to govern this city, it is apparent  with three other black candidates in the race that I have little or no chance of  being elected mayor. I’ve come to realize that I will not be able to get, especially with the others (blacks) in this race, a majority of black votes to win outright or even reach a runoff if one is needed. This is a hard fact that I couldn’t just ignore. As much as I want Alexandria to have a black mayor, and as much as I want to be that black mayor, I can honestly say here and now that both will not happen in this current race due to four of us being on the ballot. I know that electing someone as mayor should be based upon their qualifications and experience rather than their skin color, but there is nothing wrong with wishing that a city with almost a 52 percent black population  have a black mayor.”

“Making this decision was not an easy one, but it was the right thing for me to do at this time.  Doing so does not make me weak, does not mean that I didn’t have faith in myself to win, and doesn’t mean that I didn’t have faith in you to vote for me. I may be dropping out of this race, but I plan to make it my business over these next four years to be in the know about all aspects of city business, and to do what I can for the betterment of Alexandria. Thank you.”

Of course, I’m being facetious, but having four black candidates in this mayoral race is nothing to joke about. It is a serious matter. It is serious enough that we all are going to have to look deep inside of us, do some soul searching, and decide on (not based on our friendship, church loyalty, family connections, or any other mutual relationship that we may have with each of the four black candidates) one specific black candidate who we know is the best qualified and experienced among the four, and who we know has the personality to get along with everyone both black and white.

It’s time for us to stop being the “people who can’t get their act together” when it comes to electing a mayor of Alexandria.  We weren’t together in 2006,  and we’re damn sure  not together now.  It’s the same old same old, and by now, you think we would have gotten a little smarter in figuring out that four black people running for the same office would split the black vote.

We can’t be this ignorant in the 21st century, can we? From the looks of things, we are and will continue to be until black people get it through their thick heads that we are only robbing ourselves the opportunity of ever having a black mayor.

Yes, I would like for this mayoral campaign to produce a black mayor, but most importantly than that, I implore each and every one of you to get out on Election Day and vote. Please, please, get out and do your civic duty on Oct.  2, 2010.

Cenla NAACP hosts rally that seeks to unite community

By EverythingCenla staff

The Central Louisiana NAACP will host a “Invest in Unity Rally” at 6 p.m. Friday, Sept. 10,  at Peabody Magnet High School.

“We are calling the citizens and communities to walk in unity, stand up for unity, work together, pray together and pull together for the good and health of the people and the community,” said the Rev. Ameal Jones Sr.

Jones is the pastor of Mt. Zion Baptist Church and is serving as the local president of the civil rights organization.

“We challenge you to make a serious deposit and invest in unity. Do not let this October 2010 election divide us and we fall again for a mouth full of political cotton candy,” Jones said. “Do not become a puppet nor a muppet who is dangled and manipulated by the philosophy of Willie Lynch. The forces that seek to conquer or souls, crush us and extinguish the light of hope are far greater. These forces and powers manifest themselves in poverty, disease, broken families, fatherlessness, disrespect, drugs, violence, joblessness, mass unemployment, miseducation, incarceration, racism, homelessness and moral devastion.”

“Do not let people who look like us betray us and divide us,” Jones said.

In addition to entertainment, the rally will include a political forum that will include the City of Alexandria mayoral and council candidates.

Jones said the NAACP hopes to accomplish the following and among others:

  • Demonstrate unity by walking together
  • Bring community leaders and activists together to discuss community issues and solutions
  • Develop advocates who work on behalf of “the least of the these”
  • Increase the membership of Central Louisiana NAACP

UPDATE: Fire destroys Heyman Lane home Tuesday night

Firefighters with Rapides Parish Fire District 2 and the Alexandria Fire Department battled a blaze at the home of Theresa Earthly  Tuesday  night.

Fire District 2  sounded the alarm about 9:25 p.m. to respond to 215 Heyman Lane. When firefighters arrived at 9:32 they found the home engulfed in fire, said Assistant Fire Chief Gary Leggett.

It appeared that no one was injured as homeowners gathered outside of the home.

The cause of the fire is being investigated, Leggett said.

Red Cross to host hurricane prepardness event for military personnel and families

With late August marking the peak of Hurricane Season and September hailed as National Preparedness Month, the Red Cross will be hosting a special event for military families in Central Louisiana.  At the event, military personnel and families will be able to build an emergency preparedness kit and learn about emergency preparedness.  The American Red Cross’ Services to Armed Forces will host a Ready Fort Polk Emergency Preparedness Kit event Aug. 28 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at Army Community Service bldg 920, BellRichard Avenue.

Fort Polk is one of six places worldwide to participate in the grant-funded program this year.  Other locations are Germany, Korea, Fort Drum, N.Y., Fort Lewis, Wash., and Fort Belvoir, Va.

The goal is to provide 1,500 Families at each location with basic elements of an emergency/disaster kit. The items that will be made available for military families at the event include:

• ARC multipurpose lantern
• Two LED flow sticks
• Two emergency preparedness drawstring bags
• Self-powered AM/FM National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration radio
• Personal safety pack
• Mini water storage system
• Multi-tool

Red Cross volunteer teams from across Louisiana will be will be available to demonstrate how to assemble a disaster kit and to provide community disaster preparedness information.  Other Fort Polk agencies and units will be supporting the event as well.

The event is open to anyone with a military ID: Active duty, Reserve, National Guard or retirees.