Western Brown’s Leto excels in Australia Rockets ready for 1st season in SBAAC Paddling, hiking activities available at Ohio State Parks SB Warriors get set to hit gridiron for 2nd year of varsity football Scotty W Johnson Glenna V Moertle Ricky L Hoffer Ruth E Ward David A Watson Janet L Dotson Vilvie S King Steven C Utter Cropper joins Fallis at Bethel-Tate Local kids find success in world of martial arts 13th annual Bronco 5K Run and Fitness Walk set for Aug. 5 Teams compete in memory of Randy Fulton Mike W Smith Roger Helton David A Borders Timothy E Argenbright Joseph W Sherrill Frances K Pedigo Cecil N Graham Sawyers charged in sex for heroin plot Group demands changes at ELSD Blanche Malblanc Pauline L Kirk Over 70 take part in 11th Joe Myers 5K Classic Lions Club 4th of July Festival brings outdoor fun to Ripley ODNR reminds visitors to swim safe this summer Changes in high school track and field/cross country rules include school issued and approved uniforms Betty L Philpott Judy B Williams Billie J Russell Remembering Ravye 25 attend volleyball camp in Fayetteville Western Brown hosts Pee Wee Football Camp Eugene L Baumann Kids enjoy a ‘Touch-a-Truck’ event in Mt. Orab New police chief takes over in Fayetteville BC Chamber moving forward on 2017 SummerFest Two killed in wrong way crash in Mt. Orab Jack Hamilton Charles L Glover Maxine M Stires Western Brown youth basketball camps a success Leto to represent Team USA in Australia Broncos hard at work in preparation for fall season Eastern approves bowling team Phyllis Ruth Lois A Manley Eddie L Carr Thomas L Carnahan Cameron Barkley Walter J McGee Gary J Graham George D Johnson Walter F Crawford Jr Charles E Meranda Jr Corbin testifies before Ohio Senate Five arrested in Hamersville drug bust Neil Diamond tribute band coming Hyde finds home at Midway Youngsters work to improve on hoop skills at Eastern basketball camps Sizer named All-District Honorable Mention Western Brown’s Barnes earns All-State, All-District honors Local players compete in SWOFCA Ron Woyan East/West All-Star Game 6th annual Ravye Williams Memorial 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament set for June 24 Clarence E Teal Rosie B Poe Monard C Boots James P Conrad James T Dinser Scott J Swearingen Eastern’s Farris earns award for top 2-point field percentage in Ohio Georgetown’s Seigla earns All-District honors OHSAA announces 2017 football regions and playoffs format Western Brown volleyball camps a success with over 100 in attendance Rigdon finishes high school running career with 10th place finish at state track and field championship meet Grace E Fite Women return to county jail as funds start to run low Georgetown Council takes action on vacant structures Veterans honored in Mt. Orab John McGee Timmy Burson Patricia A London Mary J Hall Kenneth R Behymer Western Brown’s Joe Sams commits to Marietta College WBHS to hold girls youth basketball camp Huseman signs with UC Clermont Day to continue baseball career on collegiate level at UC Clermont Western’s Pack signs with NKU WBHS to host youth boys basketball camp Eastern’s Rigdon, Hopkins are STATE BOUND James Ratliff Robert P Lesko Armstrong sentenced to twenty years on child porn possession charges Russellville hires new Village Clerk Russellville Council approves purchase of two ambulances

Stranded students rescued by Brown County cooperation


By Wayne Gates –

A busload of kids and adults are safe at home, thanks to cooperation and generosity in Brown County.
33 students and six adults from Cornerstone Christian Academy near Cleveland were on their way to Ripley to see the Rankin and Parker houses when their bus broke down on U.S. 52 on the morning of March 17.
They ended up stuck by the side of the road for seven hours.
They were noticed by a Ripley police officer, who called the situation in.  The Brown County Communications Center then called the Ohio Highway Patrol.
“When the situation started to take a turn for the better was when the state troopers started to take care of us,” said Cornerstone teacher Kate O’Brien, one of the chaperones on the trip.
Trooper Baker of the OHP and then Sergeant Pearcy stayed with the group from noon until almost five p.m. while repairs were attempted on the bus.
When that wasn’t working, and with darkness and rain on the way, Pearcy started working the phones.
He got in touch with Ripley High School Principal Susie Skinner, who invited the group to her school and sent a bus to pick them up.
“We got to the high school about five o’clock.  Our kids could run around in the gym and play basketball.  They ordered us sandwiches from a local deli for dinner.  They were just so welcoming,” O’Brien said.
The next concern was dinner for hungry teenagers.
“The treasurer’s office, both Kim Meyers and Jeff Rowley   made sure the kids were fed.  There was food left over, so they must have had enough to eat,” said Skinner.
At this point, the Georgetown school district stepped up, offering to drive the group halfway home in a Georgetown bus.
“The original plan was for the bus to take us to the Columbus area because a bus from our school was coming down to come get us, but I got a call on the way that our bus had broken down.  So I was about to lose my mind,” said O’Brien.
Her concern was short lived.
“I was scrambling to figure out a way to get these students home when (driver) Martina (Kuttler) graciously said ‘Hey, I’m feeling fine.  I’m not tired at all and I would happily drive you two more hours back to Cleveland.”
The group finally arrived home about 2:30 a.m.
“She was like an angel sent from God sent directly to us.  She was just a dear sweet lady,” said O’Brien.
“There were parents who wanted to hug her and tell her how great she was.  Our parents were just so thankful. One of the parents actually waited at the bus door.  This mother just wanted to give a hug to (Martina) and tell her thank you.  It was very touching.”
O’Brien also talked about the emotional roller coaster that she and the group went through on that very long day.
“There were several distinct moments when I started to feel a sense of relief,” O’Brien said.
“The first one was when the state troopers started making things happen on our behalf.  I just really felt like someone was fighting for me and taking care us who could really get things done,” she said.
“I also felt relief when the Ripley bus pulled up and we got our kids off the broken bus.  The only time I cried during the whole ordeal was when we walked into that high school and everyone was there to greet us.  That was the most touching moment to me.”
And when Georgetown bus arrived to take them home, O’Brien said “Once I saw Martina pull up with that bus, I said ‘thank you Jesus for taking care of us. Our kids and adults were pretty trusting in the Lord that although we didn’t know what was going to happen, we were all safe.”
The group finally arrived back home about 2:30 a.m. Kuttler said that the trip was a special experience for her.
“The parents were very thankful and said that I was an angel sent to them.  But really, truly there were a lot of people involved.  I got the thank you’s but there were a lot more people involved than just me that made that happen,” Kuttler said.
“I was a very good feeling to be a part of that reunion.  Hugging and kisses on the forehead and things like that.  It was very nice. I thanked God before I left for the hotel that I got to be a part of that.”
Georgetown Ohio Highway Patrol Post Commander Randy McElfresh praised his troopers and everyone else involved during the very long day for everyone.
“The quality of people that we have in Brown County shows itself in situations like this,” McElfresh said.
RULH Superintendent Linda Naylor echoed those sentiments.
“I’m always impressed when people are willing to go out of their way and put themselves out.  They took several hours out of their Friday evening to make sure they were fed and in a safe place.  When you see staff members setting that kind of an example, it’s pretty exciting,” Naylor said.
Burrows added, “It makes me proud to work where I work.  The one thing that never ceases to amaze me about the people of Georgetown is their pounding heart for kids.  That’s what makes them great at what they do.”
Skinner also took time to praise those involved.
“It’s just a proud day when we can do something like this.  If a busload of my kids was stranded someplace, I would hope that somebody would get them the help they needed.  I just asked the kids to pay it forward.  Sometime in their lives they will have the opportunity to step up and help a group and I hope they remember that someone stepped up and helped them.”
O’Brien said she was humbled by the experience and the reaction of total strangers.
“We are just so grateful to Martina and everyone at the Georgetown and Ripley school systems and the state troopers who helped us out. The generosity and kindness of the people in Ripley and Georgetown was a real blessing to me and all the kids.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

2016 News Democrat