Obituary of Jessie Burkett

Jessie D. Burkett, age 58, resident of Ft. Scott, KS, died Tuesday, December 28, 2021, at Via Christi Hospital, Pittsburg, KS. He was born July 17, 1963, in Columbus, GA, the son of George and Faye Mannix Burkett.

Jessie worked as a press operator for a newspaper and then drove a truck for many years. He enjoyed woodworking and could fix anything.

He married Kimberly Graham on June 16, 1989, in Belton, TX.

Survivors include his wife Kimberly of the home; two daughters, Amanda Griggs (Ty), St. Mary’s, GA, and Amber Burkett (Chris), Belton, TX; a son, Aaron Burkett, Belton, TX; a brother, Tommy Burkett, TX; eight grandchildren, Azrah, Miley, Marly, Foster, Joshua, Crista, Haleigh, and Ayden; and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by a sister, Donna Coggin, a grandson, Jacob, and his parents.

Cremation has taken place.

A memorial service will be held at a later date.

Memorials are suggested to the Jessie Burkett memorial fund and may be left in care of the Cheney Witt Chapel, PO Box 347, 201 S. Main St., Ft. Scott, KS 66701. Words of remembrance may be submitted to the online guestbook at

Low-Income Energy Assistance Program Helps Heat Kansas Homes


TOPEKA – A perfect storm of cold weather and expensive energy costs is headed to Kansas households heating bills this winter.

National gas costs are projected to rise by 30 percent while energy costs are expected to be six percent higher, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration and the Kansas Corporation Commission. They explain that high natural gas and energy usage from Winter Storm Uri in February 2021, high demands on natural gas from heat waves this summer, energy shortages in Europe and Asia, and declining domestic production, all combined will cause energy and natural gas costs to be higher than normal this winter.

“This strain on already stressed family financial situations is cause for concern,” said DCF Secretary Laura Howard. “The Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF) is ready to assist Kansans with the Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP).”

LIEAP provides an annual benefit to help qualifying households pay winter heating bills. Persons with disabilities, older adults and families with children are the primary groups assisted. Applications for the program will be accepted beginning Monday, Jan. 3. In 2021, 38,750 households received an average benefit of $1,389, an increase from 2020 when about 34,000 households received an average benefit of $960.

To qualify, applicants must be responsible for direct payment of their heating bills. Income eligibility requirements are set at 150 percent of the federal poverty level. The level of benefit varies according to household income, number of people living in the home, type of residence, type of heating fuel and utility rates.

Applicants need to have made payments on their heating bill two out of the last three months. Those payments must be equal to or exceed $80 or the total balance due on their energy bills, whichever is less.

Applications for the program have been mailed to households that received energy assistance last year. LIEAP applications are also available at local DCF offices and through partnering agencies starting Jan. 3. They can be requested by calling 1-800-432-0043. To apply online, visit For more information, visit

Applications will be accepted from Jan. 3 to 5 p.m. March 31.

Income eligibility determination:  ​

Persons Living at the Address

Maximum Gross Monthly Income


















$568 for each additional person

Funding for the Low Income Energy Assistance program is provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Community Service through the Federal Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program.

Flags at Half-Staff for 7001 Kansans Lost to COVID-19

Governor Laura Kelly Directs Flags be Flown at Half-staff to Honor 7,001 Kansans Who Lost Their Lives to COVID-19

TOPEKA – In honor of the more than 7,000 lives lost due to COVID-19, and the families they left behind, Governor Laura Kelly today directed flags be lowered to half-staff throughout the state effective immediately to sundown Friday, December  31, 2021.

“It is with great sadness that I am ordering flags to half-staff for the seventh time since the pandemic began,” Governor Kelly said. “We have the tools to stop this virus and prevent further unnecessary deaths of our loved ones. Whether you are considering your first shot, or your third, I urge all Kansans to get vaccinated as soon as possible.”

To find a vaccine near you, visit

To receive email alerts when the governor orders flags to half-staff, please visit:

Travel Service Agency in Fort Scott: AnchorBay Travel Shoppe

Judy Cassidy, owner of AnchorBay Travel Service. Submitted photo.


Judy Cassidy is the owner of AnchorBay Travel Shoppe.

She describes the business as a family-owned, faith-based full-service travel agency specializing in cruises, groups, and all-inclusive vacations.

“I operate out of my home office so I mostly do free consultations over the phone if anyone is interested in making travel arrangements,” Cassidy said. “Or (we can) meet in a public place for coffee/tea.”

Cassidy attended Fort Scott High School, got married and moved away, then moved back to Fort Scott in October 2021.

She pursued a hospitality career and lived in Nashville, Denver, and Kansas City in those years away.

The idea of the business started years ago in a church she was attending.

“My original passion for this agency started when I was very involved in my church in Denver,” according to a press release.  “I already had the travel bug and wanderlust appetite for travel but I wanted to do something fun and eventful for church groups.”

She then began planning cruise groups for churches: for their singles groups, women’s/men’s retreats, and for trips to the Holy Land.

She began her diverse career in travel and hospitality after having gained an unexpected jumpstart into the industry when she found herself managing a hotel at the age of 18, she said.

She then worked as a human resources generalist for one of the largest travel agencies at the time in Kansas City.

“Completely passionately in love with traveling, (I) continued expanding my career in upper-management and consultative roles in information technology, hotel/resort operations, sales, marketing and revenue management along with managing (my) travel agency,” according to the press release. “The travel agency was kept at a manageable part-time level while (I) continued with my hospitality career.”

Cassidy is now full-time in Fort Scott, since October 2021, with her agency AnchorBay Travel Shoppe.

The logo for AnchorBay Travel Shoppe. Taken from Facebook.

She has been partnering with a travel agency to get re-certified and help with re-branding, Cassidy said.

“We haven’t officially launched, we are getting ready to do that at the end of January 2022,” she said. “But I am available to do some travel arrangements now.”

“I am the main person in the business, I have a couple of travel advisors that work by commission,” she said.

Her mission is to “passionately inspire, educate, and fulfill dreams – one client, one destination, one travel experience at a time,” according to the press release.

She believes traveling is the gateway to a broader understanding of vast cultures and destinations yet to be explored.

“We are a full-service agency with a special niche for groups,” according to the press release.  “Whether it be faith-based cruises, business/incentive seminars at sea, or annual affinity groups. We look forward to crafting the vacation experience of your dreams.”

“And because Covid also changed the dynamics of traveling, and continues to change daily, we have the tools to stay on top of the latest news, rules and protocols,” she said.

“If something goes wrong on your trip, we work on your behalf and will go to bat for you– no matter who is at fault — and try to get your vacation back on track.”

“We have access to a variety of tools that the average consumer is not able to use or doesn’t know about,” she said. “We can sometimes get you a better seat on an airplane, add amenities at hotels, room upgrades, event tickets, and plan activities for you.”

Contact information: 620.644.9696  or


Be Alert For Scams

KDHE and KDOR Urge Kansans to be Alert for Text Phishing Scams

TOPEKA – The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) and the Kansas Department of Revenue (KDOR) urge Kansans to be alert for text messages that claim to represent KDHE and KDOR. These unsolicited messages may be phishing scams, and people should delete and not open the links or respond to such texts.

The text messages have the following message:

Kansas Covid-19 Vaccine Driver License Waiver Validation Validate your details below

Department of Health | State of Kansas

State agencies will not send unsolicited text messages requesting vaccination status, social security number or other sensitive information. Additionally, all KDHE and KDOR websites end with a .gov suffix. Websites with endings such as .com or .org are not legitimate, and Kansans should not click them.

People can report scam text messages in three ways:

  • Report it on the messaging app you use. Look for the option to report junk or spam.
  • Copy the message and forward it to 7726 (SPAM).
  • Report it to the Federal Trade Commission at

Are You Hiring?

The Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce is working on our January 2022 Help Wanted flyer. If you have a position(s) open that you would like us to list,
please email Suzette by Monday, January 3rd
at [email protected] with any details.
The flyer is distributed to various locations around town, posted on our website & social media, and available for pickup at the Chamber office.
Click here for a past Help Wanted flyer as an example.
Thank you!
You are invited to participate in a survey of Kansas businesses and employers. This survey is being conducted on behalf of the KANSASWORKS State Board, in conjunction with the local boards. The KANSASWORKS mission is to deliver a qualified workforce through training and matching services available to Kansans supporting businesses, growing regional economies and improving the prosperity of all.
(Click to complete the survey: Employer Survey)
Through this survey the Board hopes to gain insight into the needs of businesses so that we can adapt our services to meet your changing needs.
We have partnered with the Public Policy & Management Center at Wichita State University to conduct this survey. Your submission is anonymous, and you will not be contacted again for any reason without your explicit consent.
The survey will take about 15 minutes to complete. We ask that you take the time to share how the KANSASWORKS Workforce Centers could assist you, even if you have never used our services before.
If you have any questions, please contact Dulcinea Rakestraw ([email protected] or 316.978.3126).
Thank you for your participation.
Thank you to the Chamber Booster Members below for their premium support of the Chamber & Community!

Obituary of Stacy Murrow

Stacy Annette Murrow, age 49, Blue Mound, Kansas passed away Monday, December 27, 2021.

The funeral service will be held at 11 am Wednesday, January 5, 2021, at the Mound City First Baptist Church.

Burial will be in the Sunny Slope Cemetery.

Visitation will be held from 5 to 7 pm Tuesday, January 4 at the Mound City Baptist Church.

Contributions are suggested to the Addison Stokes-Todd Education Fund or Linn County Care to Share, c/o Schneider Funeral Home, P.O. Box J, Mound City, KS  66056.  Online condolences can be left at

FS City Offices Close For New Year Holiday Jan. 3

The City of Fort Scott Administrative offices will be closed on Monday, January 3rd, 2022 in observance of the New Year’s Day Holiday. The regular offices will reopen on Tuesday, January 4th, 2022.

The City’s tree and brush dump site located on North Hill will also be closed on Saturday, January 1st, 2022 for the New Year’s holiday. It will be open again on Thursday, January 6th, 2021 from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Obituary of Patricia Cruse

Patricia Ann Cruse, 62, formerly of Fort Scott, passed away Saturday morning, December 25, 2021, at her home in Afton, Oklahoma. She was born November 23, 1959, in Fort Scott, Kansas the daughter of Russell Vincent and Alta Maye (Hall) Schasteen. She married Ricky Cruse, and later they divorced.

Patricia graduated from Fort Scott High School with the Class of 1978. She loved her debate team and spoke of it often. She went on to graduate from Fort Scott Community College. She worked for Kemper Insurance Company until her accident in 1983.

Patty was a member of the Community Christian Church in Fort Scott, and her love for her Lord and Savior was very evident. Patty loved life and lived it the best she could. She loved and valued her parents.

After her mother’s death in 2004, Patty resided with Gary and Evelyn Thurston, her lifelong friends. Later, in 2019, Patty moved to Oklahoma with the Thurston’s and she resided in the home of Chris and Holly Davidson, daughter of Evelyn and Gary. Patty was very happy with her life in Oklahoma and her nurse Holly. She died peacefully at home surrounded by this family. Heaven welcomed and Angel on Christmas Morning.

Patty is survived by her caregiver family and numerous nieces and nephews, including Robin Stephens and Kip Schasteen. She was preceded in death by her parents, and her brother, Jerry Schasteen.

Pastor Mike Buckamneer will conduct graveside services at 2:00 p.m. on Friday, December 31, 2021, at the Evergreen Cemetery, under the direction of the Konantz-Cheney Funeral Home. Memorial contributions may be made to the Fort Scott Police Dept. and may be left in the care of the Konantz-Cheney Funeral Home, 15 W. Wall Street, P.O. Box 309, Fort Scott, Kansas, 66701. Condolences may be submitted to the online guestbook at