All posts by Submitted Story

K-State Extension: Caring for Ponds

Submitted by Christopher Petty

Southeast Kansas is an area of abundant water. Springtime rains have area ponds full to the brim. Many area landowners have recreational or livestock watering ponds on their property. Over time, the buildup of sediment and nutrients can cause weed and algae issues. Pondweeds can become unsightly, clog pipes and deplete oxygen necessary for a healthy fish population.

If you have concerns about the health of your pond, join the Southwind Extension District of K-State Research and Extension on Thursday, June 8, at 6 p.m. in the 4-H Building of the Bourbon County Fairgrounds in Fort Scott, Kans.

This program, featuring K-State Research and Extension Wildlife Specialist Charlie Lee, will focus on pond weed identification and control measures. The program is sponsored by Miller Feed and Farm, and a meal will be served. To pre-register for a meal, or for more information, contact the Extension Office in Fort Scott, Kans., at 620-223-3720 or e-mail Christopher Petty, District Extension Agent for Livestock Production and Forage Management at A $10 fee, payable at the door, will help cover meals and materials.

Letters from the State Senate

2017 Session – Week Thirteen

Submitted by 12th District State Senator Caryn Tyson

May tends to be a busy month with graduations, Mother’s Day, Memorial weekend and other events.  It is also a busy month for the legislature.  Veto session began May 1.  It used to be a time to consider legislation that had been vetoed by the Governor.  It should be more accurately re-named to “wrap-up session.”  The budget, tax and K-12 funding are items that still need to be completed.

The state has collected $4.8 billion in tax receipts for Fiscal Year (FY) 2017, which ends June 30. This is a $53.5 million increase for the same time frame in fiscal year 2016. It’s difficult to say if this trend will continue because of the devastating losses in agriculture caused by the March wildfires and the late April freeze. However, there is optimism at the national level that could offset the losses. We don’t need to use the budget shortfall as an excuse to massively increase our State spending and to cover that with a huge tax increase.

Other legislation worked on included the Kansas Consumer Protection Act in Senate Bill (SB) 201.  It was amended by adding current members of the military to the definition of “protected consumer.”  The bill passed the Senate unanimously.

Conference committees are meeting and this is when a bunch of bills can be combined into one bill. A few years ago, the House amended the rules to limit the number of bills that could be combined in conference committee to four bills, with a few exceptions.  It is disappointing that a couple of House committees combine several bills into one before the bill leaves committee and before it gets to conference; undermining the intent of the rule and not letting bills stand on their own merit.  SB 112 was one such bill.  It has topics from drug paraphernalia to dog fighting. The bill decreases the penalty for unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia from a class A to a class B nonperson misdemeanor.  It increases sentencing for a burglary with intent to commit a felony, theft or sex crime. SB 112 defines “Animal shelter” to be the same definition as in the Kansas Pet Animal Act. The bill had more items Senators wanted, than not.  It seems the increased sentences for persons convicted of a hate crime against law enforcement would be one of the main reasons to support the bill.  The bill passed the Senate 38 to 0.

May 8-12 is Teacher Appreciation week. “It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.”  – Albert Einstein.  Thank you to my friends, family and all who have chosen to teach.  Teachers can, and often do, influence a student’s future – the way they see themselves for the rest of their lives.  This is a powerful role and a privilege, not to be taken lightly.  I hope you take time this week to thank teachers who have influenced your life.

It is an honor and a privilege to serve as your 12th District State Senator.


Office Telephone: 785.296.6838

Telephone: 913.898.2366



Submitted by 13th District Senator Richard Hilderbrand

Weekly Review

This was the legislature’s first week back in session after First Adjournment. We voted on numerous Conference Committee Reports, wrapping up most of our non-tax, budget or education-related work.

National Day of Prayer

Thursday in the Capitol, we celebrated National Day of Prayer. Many of our Senators participated in a mid-day prayer service to extend prayers for our legislators, our staffs, our families, our servicemen and women, teachers, law enforcement, doctors and nurses, children and for the general well-being of our state.

National Police Week

This week, both the Senate and the House of Representatives passed SB 112, The Law Enforcement Protection Act, a bill strengthening protections for police officers and creating tougher sentences for individuals convicted of hate crimes toward police officers. This is a great piece of legislation that shows, concretely, our appreciation and respect for our law enforcement officials. This bill passed both chambers with large bipartisan support, and many of our Senators attended the bill’s signing ceremony in Governor Brownback’s office on Friday.

Thank You for Engaging

Thank you for all of your calls, emails and letters regarding your thoughts and concerns about happenings in Kansas. Constituent correspondence helps inform my decision-making process and is taken into great consideration when I cast my vote in the Kansas Senate. I hope you’ll continue to engage with me on the issues that matter most to you, your family and our community. If you are on Twitter or Facebook, I encourage you to follow along with the #ksleg hashtag for real-time updates on legislative happenings in Topeka. Please know that I am fully committed to addressing the current issues in our state, and am proud to be your voice in the Kansas Senate.


KANSAS CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT (SB 201): SB 201 amends the Kansas Consumer Protection Act adding members of the military to the definition of “protected consumer” found in the Act. Currently, law includes veterans, surviving spouses of veterans and immediate family members of members of the military, but does not specifically include current members of the military. This bill passed the Senate Tuesday May 2, by a vote of 39-0.

BOB GRANT BISON HERD (HB 2098): HB 2098 names the bison herd at the Mined Land Wildlife Area in Crawford Country the “Bob Grant Bison Herd.” This bill passed the Senate Tuesday May 2, by a vote of 39-0

QUALIFIED VENDOR REQUIREMENTS (HB 2353): HB 2353 revises the definition section of the State use Law by redefining the term “qualified vendor” and includes a new definition for persons who are disabled. Qualified vendor would mean a Kansas business that employs Kansas who are blind or disabled, excluding employees hired by third-party entities. Currently, the definition for qualified vendor is silent on the extent of employment and the location of operations. The bill would define “persons who are disabled” to mean any person of employable age whose physical or mental condition is a substantial barrier to employment. This bill passed the Senate Tuesday May 2, by a vote of 39-0

COMPETITIVE BID PROCESS FOR STATE CONTRACTS (HB 2356): HB 2356 revises provisions of the state’s bidding process as it relates to the definitions of “certified business” and “individual with a disability.” Under current law, most contracts are awarded to the lowest responsible bidder. However, a contract may be awarded to a certified business (or a disabled veteran business) whose bid is not more than 10 percent greater than the lowest competitive bid. The bills states that certified business must conduct most of its operations in Kansas, employing at least 10 percent of its workforce with individuals that have disabilities, contributing at least 75 percent of their health insurance premium costs, and not paying a subminimum wage, which is allowable under federal law. The Department of Administration (Department) would certify businesses every three years instead of annually. An individual could be certified as having a disability by either the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services (KDADS) or the Kansas Department for Children and Families (KDCF), using the disability standards established by the U.S. Social Security Administration as determined by the Kansas Disability Determination Services within KDCF. Under current law, disability certification is determined by KDADS using a clinical assessment. This bill passed the Senate Wednesday May 3, by a vote of 39-0


IGNITION INTERLOCK AND EXPUNGEMENTS (HB 2085): HB 2085 requires every person who has an ignition interlock device installed to complete the ignition interlock device program pursuant to rules and regulations adopted by the Secretary of Revenue. An approved service provider would have to provide proof of completion to the Division of Vehicles before the person’s driving privileges would be fully reinstated. The bill would also revise statutes governing expungements in municipal and district courts to state that provisions regarding expungement of violations of driving under the influence (DUI) or test refusal would apply to all violations committed on or after July 1, 2006, except that the district court expungement provision for a second or subsequent violation would not apply to violations committed on or after July 1, 2014, but prior to July 1, 2015. The Senate adopted the Conference Committee Report Tuesday May 2 by a vote of 39-0

GENERAL CORPORATION CODE (HB 2153): HB 2153 would create and modify law within the Kansas General Corporation Code (GCC) and alter related statutes to create a type of business entity known as a “Public Benefit Corporation.” The Senate adopted the Conference Committee Report Tuesday May 2 by a vote of 37-2

PROTECTION FROM ABUSE ACT (H Sub for SB 101): House sub. for SB 101 would adjust law concerning protective orders, notification of a sexual assault examination of a minor child, infectious disease testing, and claims for compensation through the Crime Victims Compensation Board. The Senate adopted the Conference Committee Report Tuesday May 2 by a vote of 39-0

KPERS AND KANSAS POLICE AND FIREMAN (SB 205): SB 205 makes numerous changes to the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS or Retirement System) pertaining to participating service; Kansas Police and Firemen’s (KP&F) death benefits for certain surviving spouses; the Board of Regents Retirement Plan, as it relates to working after retirement; and the administration of KPERS. The Senate Concurred with amendments in conference Wednesday May 3, 39-0

CRIMES, CRIMINAL PROCEDURE, AND CUSTODIAL INTERROGATIONS (SB 112): SB 112 creates the crime of aggravated domestic battery and modifies the crimes of domestic battery, possession of drug paraphernalia, burglary, cruelty to animals and dog fighting. Further, it would amend provisions concerning illegal sentences, post-release supervision for persons convicted of sexually violent crimes, and expungement of arrest records. It also would enact the Law Enforcement Protection Act and provisions concerning the electronic recording of certain custodial interrogations. The Senate adopted the Conference Committee Report Wednesday May 3, by a vote of 38-0

CRISIS INTERVENTION ACT (S Sub for HB 2053): Senate Substitute for HB 2053 creates the Crisis Intervention Act (Act) and amends law related to mental health to reflect the provisions of the Act. The Senate adopted the Conference Committee Report Wednesday May 3, by a vote of 39-0

PUBLIC RECORDS AND MEETINGS (HB 2301): HB 2301 modifies law related to public records and public meetings. One of these modifications includes amending law within the Kansas Code of Criminal Procedure relating to trial jurors. The bill would remove addresses of prospective jurors from the information included in the list of prospective jurors filed as a public record with the clerk of the court. The bill would also alter the Kansas Open Meetings Act (KOMA) with respect to closed or executive meetings. The bill would require any motion to recess for a closed or executive session to include a statement describing the subjects to be discussed during the closed or executive session and the justification for closing the meeting. Current law requires a statement of the justification for closing the meeting and the subjects to be discussed during the closed meeting. Unchanged in the bill would be the requirement the motion contain the time and place at which the open meeting will resume. The Senate adopted the Conference Committee Report Wednesday May 3, by a vote of 40-0

INSURANCE COVERAGE FOR SELF- STORAGE UNITS (SB 14): SB 14 creates a limited line of insurance for self-service storage unit insurance; enacts new law pertaining to this limited line; and amends a provision in the Uniform Insurance Agents Licensing Act concerning application requirements for resident agent licensure to authorize the fingerprinting of resident insurance agent applicants for the purposes of obtaining a state and national criminal history record check. The Senate adopted the Conference Committee Report Thursday May 4, by a vote of 37-3

INTERNATIONALLY ACTIVE INSURANCE GROUPS (SB 16): SB 16 enact new law pertaining to internationally active insurance groups and the corporate governance practices of all domestic insurers. The bill would also amend a provision in the Insurance Code that exempts the marketing and sale of service contacts from regulation by the Kansas Insurance Department. The Senate adopted the Conference Committee Report Thursday May 4, by a vote of 35-4

VEHICLE TITLE AND REGISTRATION FEES AND SEAT BELT SAFETY FUND (SB 89): SB 89 makes modifications to law relating to the collection of certain vehicle title and registration fees and the remittance of such fees. The bill also would increase fines for certain seat belt violations and direct related moneys to the Seat Belt Safety Fund created by the bill. The Senate adopted the Conference Committee Report Friday May 5, by a vote of 32-7


Governor Brownback signed the following bills into law during the adjournment period and the first week of Veto Session:

Senate Bill 112 – Creates tougher sentences for individuals convicted of committing hate crimes against law enforcement.

House Substitute for Senate Bill 51 – Updates the controlled substance schedule and allows the Board of Pharmacy to conduct emergency scheduling when required.

Senate Bill 124 – Specifies the factors considered in determinations of child custody and modifies the process for admitting court ordered drug and alcohol tests into evidence at Child in Need of Care hearings.

Senate Bill 202 – Approves the compact between the Kickapoo Tribe in Kansas and the State of Kansas and the compact between the Sac and Fox Nation of Missouri in Kansas and Nebraska and the State of Kansas, which relate to cigarette and tobacco sales, taxation and escrow collection.

Senate Substitute for House Bill 2026 – Makes changes to KanCare processes and contract requirements.

House Substitute for Senate Bill 70 – Amends the Kansas Amusement Ride Act and the Amusement Ride Insurance Act.

Sub for Sub for SB 95 – Authorizes the use of telephonic signatures for public assistance applications.

Senate Bill 184 – Enacts the Kansas Intelligence Fusion Center Act.

House Bill 2006 – Addresses how vacancies on county commissions are filled.

House Bill 2025 – Amends regulations related to the Kansas Board of Nursing and laws related to Mental Health Technicians.

Senate Substitute for House Bill 2027 – Amends the Kansas Healing Arts Act.

House Bill 2030 – Changes the law related to vaccination and reporting requirements.

House Bill 2043 – Amends certain financial examination requirements by the Kansas Insurance Commissioner.

S Sub for HB 2055 – Amends the Kansas Pharmacy Act.

House Bill 2094 – Addresses interlocal cooperation among local government entities.

House Bill 2118 – Provides liability exceptions and inactive provider coverage limits under the health care provider insurance availability act.

House Bill 2137 – Allows county commissioners and members of city government to serve in various volunteer capacities.

House Bill 2140 – Adopts the Great Plains Interstate Fire Compact to promote prevention and control of wild fires in the Great Plains region.

Senate Substitute for House Bill 2174 – Authorizes various distinctive license plates and allows persons with distinctive plates to obtain a wheel chair emblem.

Senate Substitute for House Bill 2304 – Amends law regarding standards and regulations of maternity centers and child care facilities.

Senate Substitute for House Bill 2052 – Concerns Appropriations for Fiscal Years 2017 through 2021.

House Bill 2080 – Concerns reinstatement of forfeited benefit units and rural water district.

House Bill 2095 – Provides a special vehicle permit for certain vehicle combinations.

House Bill 2158 – Amends the law related to canvassing of advanced ballots.

House Bill 2170 – Amends the traffic safety laws related to bicycles.

House Bill 2213 – Reauthorizes the Kansas Board of Regents fee schedule in the Kansas private and out-of-state post-secondary educational institution act.

House Substitute for Senate Bill 13 – Amends the laws related to the sale of certain alcoholic beverages.

Senate Bill 20 – Amends the State Banking Code, Kansas Money Transmitter Act, Kansas Mortgage Business Act, and the Kansas Credit Services Organization Act.

Senate Bill 46 – Amends the law pertaining to rights and procedures related to water rights.

Senate Bill 50 – Changes membership of the advisory committee on uniform state laws and the joint committee on claims against the state, and adds the unauthorized practice of law to the Kansas Consumer Protection Act.

Senate Bill 65 – Allows for creditor sale of repossessed alcoholic liquors pledged as collateral.

The Governor has now signed 62 bills into law this session and vetoed two. By law, the Kansas governor has 10 calendar days to sign the bill into law, veto the bill or allow the bill to become law without his or her signature.


Next week is the second week of Veto Session. We will continue working on our three big ticket items: taxes, budget and school finance. I hope you’ll reach out with any comments, questions, or concerns regarding these issues or others. If you are on Twitter or Facebook, I encourage you to follow along with the #ksleg hashtag for real-time updates on legislative happenings in Topeka as we work to wrap this legislative session up.

Kansas State Southwind District Events

Barn Quilt Workshop hosted by Pawnee 4-H Club

Submitted by Joy Miller

Come create a barn quilt with the Pawnee 4-H Club. The proceeds from the workshop will be used to build cabinets to display 4-H’ers exhibits during the fair. The Workshop is Friday, May 12, and Saturday, May 13, at the 4-H Building located on the Bourbon County Fairgrounds. The cost is $20 per person and includes instructions, 14 quilt patterns to choose from, a 2’ x 2’ primed board, paint and brushes.

Call or Text 620-215- 6538 to RSVP.K-State to host Spring Crops Field Day in Parsons

Wheat variety plot tour plus corn and soybean disease updates

Submitted by Christopher Petty

Different soil types and climate considerations make growing wheat, corn and soybeans in Southeast Kansas somewhat different from growing crops in other parts of the state. Kansas State University’s Southeast Research and Extension Center will host a Spring Crops Field Day on May 23 to update producers in the region on the latest information on varieties, production methods and disease management.

The field day starts with registration and a complimentary breakfast from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. at the research center, 25092 Ness Road, (immediately south of U.S. Highway 400) in Parsons.

The program includes:

  • Wheat Variety Plot Tour – Doug Shoup, K-State extension crops and soils specialist, Lonnie Mengarelli, K-State research assistant and seed company representatives;
  • Effectiveness of Precision Planting Row Units – Ajay Sharda, K-State extension precision agriculture/machine systems engineer;
  • Reducing the Impact of Fusarium Head Blight in Wheat – Gretchen Sassenrath, K-State extension crop production agronomist; and
  • Corn and Soybean Disease Update – Doug Jardine, K-State extension plant pathologist.

There is no cost to attend. In case of rain, the program will be conducted indoors. More information is available by calling 620-421-4826.

Trends in Leadership

Submitted Carla Nemecek, Southwind Extension District, Director

Ask yourself, “What do I think about leadership and myself as a leader?” Each one of us has a wide range of skills, interests and abilities that we use in our daily lives – at home with our family, on the job and in our communities.  As the first in a series of articles focusing on leadership, I hope to motivate you to release the leader within and get yourself up and moving to contribute as a leader to your school, church, community or even among your friends.

As you consider your leadership philosophy and style, ask yourself what can I contribute to my organizations and community – either on or off the job? Understanding and supporting the motivation of the individual group member is vital. Your own enthusiasm and commitment are also crucial to success.  As someone who attends a great deal of meetings each month, I see a wide range of leadership and experience in serving on local boards. In my observations, the best leaders are not always the most outspoken or aggressive, but often the “thinkers” at the back of the room who wait until the perfect moment to speak their opinions. That is not to say those that speak up are wrong in their ideas, just that we should all be aware of possible leaders at our activities – and not determine leadership by where a person sits in the room.

Citizen leaders are people in the community who are concerned about the quality of life in their community. They assume responsibility for the public good and see a need to act together for the common good of the community. Citizen leaders take ownership of the problems and opportunities that exist in the community and hold themselves accountable for seeing that action is taken. In other words, they don’t want “experts” or politicians to solve the problems for them.

Citizen leaders work with others in the community to identify opportunities or problems. They help others articulate a common purpose and set goals and objectives. They also assume that there are differences in the way people regard the opportunity or problem – such as different values of the people, different experiences and different viewpoints. Citizen leaders help people connect their differences to the common purpose that brought them together. In other words, the citizen leader helps people see how their differences can be used to solve problems rather than be a point of conflict. In the Southwind District, these citizen leaders are often the most exciting group for us to work with. With a shared passion for the betterment of Allen, Bourbon and Neosho Counties, and resources from Kansas State University, the possibilities are truly endless.

When you are thinking about moving into a leadership position, or a more active role as a group member, think about these questions:

  • What skills do I have to offer?
  • What would I like to learn more about?
  • What is it that I don’t like to do?
  • What do I want to do, but am hesitant about?

Think about what motivates you, get excited about that motivation and consider the opportunity to step up and serve as a local leader in your own community.  I would be interested in your thoughts on leadership, so please email me at if you are motivated to consider leadership as an activity and not just a position.


Obituary: Frances G. Hall

Submitted by Cheney Witt Funeral Home

Frances G. Hall, age 79, passed from this life on Saturday, May 6, 2017.

She was born November 30, 1937, to George and Mary (Hubbard) Wingate in Leeton, Mo.  She graduated from McClouth High School. Growing up, Frances was an accomplished horse woman.  Among those accomplishments, she was the 1953 Kansas State Champion and the 1953 Missouri State Runner Up in Western Pleasure and Horsemanship. In 1954, she repeated as the Kansas Western Pleasure and Horsemanship champion and won the 1954 Missouri State champion in both Western Pleasure and Horsemanship. Frances ran and retired from the Fort Scott Sale Barn Cafe located in the Fort Scott Livestock Barn where she cooked and served delicious home style cooking for many years.  Frances was well known for her cooking and baking skills—especially her pies.  She was lovingly known as “The Pie Lady.” She lived life her way—working hard, being honest, straight forward and with kindness in her heart!  Frances was always willing to help those in need.

She is survived by her children: Randy Hunsperger and wife Cathy of Yates Center, Kans.,  Brenda

Robertson and husband Ken of Pittsburg, Kans., Sharon Olivas and husband Mike of Fort Scott, Kans., Larry Bowman and wife Twyla of Fulton, Kans., and a brother, George Wingate and wife Carol of Paola, Kans.

Frances is also survived by 12 grandchildren and many great grandchildren, as well as many others who lovingly referred to her as “Mom” or “Grandma.”  She was preceded in death by her parents, a daughter, Donna Linn, formerly of Uniontown, Kans., a brother Bill Wingate formerly of Bronson, Kans., a grandson, Butch Hall formerly of Uniontown, Kans., as well as four great grandchildren.

There was cremation. The family will receive friends from 7 until 9 Thursday evening, May 11, at the Cheney Witt Chapel.  In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to Care to Share which may be left in care of the Cheney Witt Chapel, PO Box 347, 201 S. Main, Ft. Scott, KS 66701. Words of remembrance may be submitted to the online guestbook at

Obituary: Sister Mary Bernadette Karleskint

Submitted by Cheney Witt Funeral Home

Sister Mary Bernadette Karleskint, age 99, a former resident of Fort Scott, Kans., and more recently of St. Louis, Mo., passed away Saturday, May 6, 2017, four days prior to her 100th birthday.

She was born Anna Cecilia Karleskint on May 9, 1917, in Miami, Okla., the daughter of Joseph Karleskint and Mary Hickman Karleskint. She was one of eight children. Sister Mary Bernadette, as she was known in religious life, entered the Sisters of Mercy on June 23, 1935, and pronounced Perpetual Vows on August 16, 1941, in Webster Groves, Mo. Sister Mary Bernadette ministered in education as a teacher and administrator in Kansas, Louisiana, Texas and Missouri. Among her positions, she served as principal and as a school superintendent in Fredonia and Walnut, Kans. After retiring from education, she volunteered at St. John’s Hospital in Springfield, Mo. When sister formally retired again, she moved to Catherine’s Residence, the retirement home for the Sisters of Mercy in St. Louis, Mo.

Sister’s ministry of prayer was a daily priority for her and she frequently prayed for the community as well as the needs of the world.

Father Robert Wachter will conduct Mass of Christian Burial at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 13, at the Mary Queen of Angels Catholic Church. Burial will follow in the St. Mary’s Cemetery. Services are under the direction of the Cheney Witt Chapel, 201 S. Main, P.O. Box 347, Ft. Scott, KS 66701. Words of remembrance may be submitted to the online guestbook at

FSCC: Outstanding Students and Alumni

FSCC Theatre Department Improv Troupe to Perform on May 9

The Fort Scott Community College Theatre Department invites the community to a performance by Amused to Death, the college’s comedy improvisational troupe. The performance is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Tuesday, May 9, at the Danny & Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center. Featured theatre students include Paulette Hays, Courtney Millard, Jackie Neher, Seth Newkirk, Jared Oshel, Stephanie Rice, Linda Shinkle and Royce White. This event is free and open to the public. For more information, please call Lawrence Alford, FSCC Theatre Director, at 620-223-2700, ext. 3056.

FSCC names Cara Comstock 2017 Outstanding Sophomore

Fort Scott Community College is pleased to announce Cara Comstock has been selected as the 2017 Outstanding Sophomore. FSCC will host a reception to honor her at 2 p.m. on Thursday, May 11, in the meeting rooms of the Danny & Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center, 2108 South Horton Street, Fort Scott.

Photo Credit: FSCC

“Cara has gone above and beyond for FSCC. She has served as a great example for the students and President’s Ambassadors,” said Matt Glades, FSCC Director of Admissions. “We are very proud of her and look forward to seeing her succeed in her future endeavors.”

Comstock hails from Deerfield, Mo., and her parents are Charlie and Patty Comstock. She will graduate in May with an associate of general studies degree, and plans to transfer to Kansas State University to study agriculture education and animal science.

“I am very humbled to be selected as the 2017 Outstanding Sophomore. FSCC has many outstanding students, and I am honored to represent such a great class,” said Comstock. “I am extremely grateful for the opportunities that have been presented to me throughout my time FSCC, and am excited to build on the foundation that I was able to attain here as I further my education at Kansas State University.”

Comstock was named to the FSCC President’s Honor Roll in 2016. She has served as an admissions department work study student, supervisor of the president’s ambassadors, and a member of the collegiate farm bureau, phi theta kappa, livestock judging team, CAMP scholarship program, and TRIO student support services. She was named to the 2017 All-Kansas Academic Team, and received second place at the Young Farmers’ & Rancher’s Conference Discussion Meet and Quiz Bowl.

FSCC Names Timbi West 2017 Outstanding Alumna

Fort Scott Community College is pleased to announce Timbi West, APRN, FNP, has been selected as the 2017 Outstanding Alumna by the FSCC Alumni and Friends Board of Directors. FSCC will host a reception to honor West and Whitney Rogers, the 2017 Outstanding Young Alumna, at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, May 19, in the meeting rooms of the Danny & Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center. West will speak at the noon graduation ceremony on May 19.

Photo Credit: FSCC

West serves as a family nurse practitioner at the Charleston Rural Health Clinic and Schmitz Family Practice in Charleston, Ark. She is a veteran of the United States Army and Air Force. She graduated from FSCC in 1983 with a licensed practical nurse certificate and with an associate of science degree in nursing in 1984.

“I was only 17 when I attended FSCC and had no idea at the time what an impact the foundation would have on my future,” said West. “Every step of my life and career has been based on those early years spent at FSCC.”

While attending FSCC, West worked at Mercy Hospital Fort Scott as a nurse’s aide and licensed practical nurse.

She went on to attend Pittsburg State University from 1984 to 1985 and Wentworth Military Academy/Junior College from 1986 to 1987. She earned her bachelor of science degree in nursing from Missouri Southern State College in 1990, and master of science degree in nursing in 1994.

From 1984 to 1986, West served as a registered nurse at Mercy Hospital Fort Scott. West went on to serve as a charge nurse at Heartland Hospital until 1990. She served as a registered nurse, staff development assistant, and education committee chairperson at the Missouri Department of Mental Health from 1990 to 1991. West worked at the Missouri Department of Health, serving as case manager from 1991 to 1996, community health nurse from 1991 to 1993, public health coordinator from 1993 to 1994, and family nurse practitioner from 1994 to 1996. She also served as a clinical faculty preceptor for the University of Missouri from 1995 to 1996. From 1991 to 1995, she served in the U.S. Army Reserve as a first lieutenant and as a captain of the 188th Fighter Wing of the U.S. Air Force from 1997 to 1999. She served as a family nurse practitioner at the Northside Community Health Center from 1996 to 1999.

West is an active member of her church and community. She serves as a preceptor for nurse practitioner and nursing students and provides physical exams to student-athletes at local schools. She is also member of the Christian Women’s Job Corps Advisory Board, Kiwanis, American Legion, Bible Study Fellowship and University of Kansas Alumni Association. West resides in Charleston, Ark., with her husband, Jim. She has three children, Brad, Ellen and Clay.

FSCC Names Whitney Rogers 2017 Outstanding Young Alumna

Fort Scott Community College is pleased to announce Whitney Rogers has been selected as the 2017 Outstanding Young Alumna by the FSCC Alumni and Friends Board of Directors. FSCC will host a reception to honor Rogers and Timbi West, the 2017 Outstanding Alumna, at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, May 19, in the meeting rooms of the Danny & Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center. Rogers will speak at the 9 a.m. graduation ceremony on May 19.

Photo Credit: FSCC

Rogers is a fourth grade teacher at George Nettles Elementary School in Pittsburg, Kans. She earned her associate of science degree from FSCC in 1997.

“Although many years have passed since I attended there, Fort Scott Community College still holds a very dear place in my heart,” said Rogers. “The two years I attended there was the highlight of my college career.”

After graduating from FSCC, Rogers enrolled at Mid America Nazarene University to pursue her bachelor’s degree in elementary education and graduated summa cum laude in 1999. Rogers earned her master’s degree and certification in English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) from Pittsburg State University in 2008.

After graduating with her bachelor’s degree, Rogers went on to work at Mission Trail Elementary as a fourth grade teacher. From 2001 to 2003, she worked at Lusher Elementary as a fourth grade and second grade teacher. Rogers served as a kindergarten teacher at Eugene Ware Elementary from 2003 to 2006. From 2010 to 2012, she served as an adjunct instructor at Labette Community College. Since 2012, she has taught at George Nettles Elementary.

From 2005 to 2009, Rogers served on the FSCC Alumni and Friends Board.  She has participated in a variety of community service projects and coordinated supply drives to support the country of Haiti after it was devastated by an earthquake. She has written and worked on grants to receive thousands of dollars for classroom supplies to benefit her students. Rogers was invited to speak at the 2016 National Science Education Association Conference about STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) in the classroom. In 2016, she was one of only 32 other teachers in the U.S. selected to receive the Rural Community Trust grant to travel abroad for professional development. She traveled to Taiwan to learn how the schools teach math and science to bring that knowledge back to her classroom. She is an active member of the Pittsburg Nazarene Church, where her husband, Kyle, is the pastor. Rogers resides in Pittsburg, Kans., with her husband and three children, Noah, Grace and Luke.

FSCC May Schedule

Tuesday, May 9

FSCC Theatre Improv Performance, 7 p.m. at the Danny & Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center

Thursday, May 11

FSCC Outstanding Sophomore Celebration, 2 p.m. at the Danny & Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center

Saturday, May 13

FSCC Miami County Campus Celebration of Success, 2 p.m. at the Miami County Campus

Wednesday, May 17

FSCC Adult Basic Education Graduation, 6 p.m. at the Danny & Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center

Thursday, May 18

FSCC Nurse Recognition and Pinning Ceremony, 4 p.m. at the Danny & Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center

FSCC Athletics Department Banquet, 6:30 p.m. at the Danny & Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center

Friday, May 19

FSCC Graduation Ceremony, 9 a.m. and 12 p.m. at the Danny & Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center

FSCC Outstanding Alumna and Young Alumna Celebration, 10:30 a.m. at the Danny & Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center


Obituary: Lois Jean Wynn

Lois Jean Wynn, age 82, had the joy of being called home to Heaven to join our Lord and Savior on April 19, 2017.

Lois was born October 12, 1934, in Talmage, Kans., the daughter of James and Mary Luker.  She graduated from Uniontown High School and then began work at the Western Insurance Co. in Fort Scott, Kans.  This is when she met a very handsome young man named Don, who swept her off her feet.  They fell in love and were married on September 19, 1954.  Lois and Don had four children, two girls and two boys.  She was a charter member of Faith church of Fort Scott, and she loved her church.  She made sure that each of her children found a love for the Lord and she is happy because all of her kids, grandkids, and most of her great grandkids (babies excluded) know the Lord as their personal Savior. She taught kids in Sunday school, she worked with the youth and she loved teaching women’s bible studies.  She also loved to read, Louis Lamoure being one of her favorite authors. She enjoyed the way he described the old west and made you feel like you were a part of it.  She also enjoyed old and new quilts.  She liked the hand-quilting style and the design they had.  It was a joy to her when she would see one finished.  She also had a real desire to find out about the old one-room school houses in Bourbon County.  She would always talk with the old timers that were from the area and see where the school houses were and what they could tell her about them.

Survivors include her loving husband of 63 years, Don Wynn; her daughter Deborah Wynn, Mounds, Okla.; son and daughter in love Rick and Mary Wynn, Uniontown, Kans.; daughter and son in love Tina and Eromosele Aigbiremonlen of Mounds, Okla.; son and daughter in love Mark and Amy Wynn, College Station, Texas; seven grandchildren; seven great grandchildren; sisters Lucille Ward and Phyllis Randall and husband David; a brother Eldon Luker and wife Gloria; a sister-in-law Mary Lou Luker; and many nieces, nephews, great nieces and great nephews.  She was preceded in death by her parents; a brother, Kenneth Luker; and a sister, Bonnie Cornwell and husband Robert.

There was cremation. Pastor Matthew Hunt conducted memorial services at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 22, 2017, at Faith Church of Fort Scott. Memorials are suggested to either Mercy Hospice or Faith Church of Fort Scott and may be left in care of the Cheney Witt Chapel, PO Box 347, 201 S. Main, Ft. Scott, KS 66701.  Words of remembrance may be submitted to the online guestbook at


Obituary: Douglas Blaine Hazelbaker

Submitted by Cheney Witt Funeral Home

Douglas Blaine Hazelbaker, age 51, a resident of rural Redfield, passed away early Monday, May 1, 2017, at the Mercy Hospital in Fort Scott.

Doug was born May 31, 1965, to Alice and Norman Hazelbaker.  He and his wife, Jana, were married on August 17, 2002, and are the parents of daughters, Dylan and Dakota. In 1983, he graduated from Uniontown High School.  While in high school, he competed in the Kansas State High School Rodeo Association, and he was the state champion in both calf roping and steer wrestling, and the Reserve All-Around cowboy his senior year.  While attending Allen County Community College and Northwestern Oklahoma State University, he competed in both calf roping and steer wrestling, while earning a Bachelor’s degree in education.  Doug began his teaching career as a 4th grade teacher and was teaching middle school math at Jayhawk-Linn in Mound City, where he touched the lives of many young people and worked with wonderful friends over the past 25 years.  His passion for calf roping extended well beyond college, and he logged many miles from rodeo to rodeo, building great friendships over the years. Some of his accomplishments in calf roping include IPRA rookie of the year, Great Lakes PRCA circuit finals contestant, Cheyenne Frontier Days performance qualifier, and IFR qualifier in 1991.  In 2016, he qualified for the Interstates Rodeo Association finals, and Dylan wears his jacket from that association.  He also competed in the United Rodeo Association for many years, and in the year end finals for 2016 finished 5th overall in the over 40 calf roping. Dakota is honored to wear his URA jacket, and Dylan proudly wears the belt buckle he won.

Survivors include his wife Jana and daughters Dylan and Dakota of the home; parents, Norman and Alice Hazelbaker, Redfield, Kans.; a sister, Carol Camac and husband Joe, Augusta, Kans.; a brother, Mike Hazelbaker and wife Susan, Alma, Kans.; nieces and nephews, Cole, Travis, and Lucas Camac, Cole Fowles, Cassidy Anderson, Quincy and Emma Charleston, and Cooper, Colton, and Canyon Charleston.

Cowboy Preacher Marty Brock will conduct memorial services at 11 a.m. Friday, May 5, at the Fort Scott Fairgrounds Arena.  In case of inclement weather, the memorial service will be moved inside the Danny and Willa Ellis Fine Arts Center at FSCC.  The family will receive friends from 5 until 7 p.m. at the FSCC Agriculture Building (Armory).  In lieu of flowers, the family strongly suggests memorials to the Hazelbaker Girl’s Scholarship Fund and may be left in care of the Cheney Witt Chapel, PO Box 347, 201 S. Main, Ft. Scott, KS 66701.

Words of remembrance may be submitted to the online guestbook at  The family asks for any special memory or story of Doug to be brought to the service or mailed to Jana Hazelbaker, 1311 Hwy 54, Redfield, KS 66769.  These memories will be used to compile a scrapbook for Dylan and Dakota