February 10, 2011

Going Snowhere

Record Snowfall Brings Scotland County to Standstill

It was tough to get a true measure of exactly how much snow fell in Scotland County February 1st and 2nd amidst the peaks and valleys of some of the worst drifting the region had seen in more than a quarter century. The National Weather Service reported a total of 17 inches of snow over the 24-hour period.

The record precipitation combined with high winds generated impassable snow drifts throughout the region, bringing Scotland County to a standstill Tuesday night. By 10 p.m. the state had called off its road crews as well as the Highway Patrol as conditions made it impossible to continue work.

"By that time visibility was down to nearly nothing," said Scotland County Emergency Management Director Bryan Whitney. "It was taking us 10 to 15 minutes to travel one mile."

Road crews were unable to make a dent in the rapidly falling snow and road conditions were becoming unsafe for the work crews as at least two state trucks were stranded.

"We had two guys on the city square working on keeping it open, and they just could not gain any ground," said Memphis Street Superintendent Roy Monroe.

Ultimately the decision was made to call in all the work crews and to wait until the storm cleared to reinstate cleanup efforts.

That occurred Wednesday morning at dawn when city, county and state crews began the massive task of digging out Scotland County.

MoDOT's initial efforts targeted Highways 136 and 15, reopening them to one-lane traffic and ultimately to full traffic before turning attention to the lettered state routes in the county.

"Last week, northeast Missourians experienced an epic event," said MoDOT Northeast District Engineer Paula Gough, P.E. "The blizzard of 2011 dumped between 12" and 20" of snow on us, and it appears the effects of this storm will remain with us through this week. On behalf of the management team of MoDOT's Northeast District, I want to publicly thank our employees, law enforcement, contractors, first responders, other MoDOT districts, the television and radio stations, the newspapers, and the citizens of Missouri for their help in clearing our roads."

Monroe stated his crew began hitting the city streets at 4:00 a.m., a trend that continued the rest of the week.

"We got an early start the rest of the week," Monroe said. "That is a good time because there aren't many people out yet so we have the streets to ourselves."

Even without having to deal with traffic, cleanup crews still had to battle the towering drifts as well as the dwindling amount of room for the displaced snow to go.

"A lot of places we have snow taller than the snow plow blades, so we are forced to use a back hoe or other equipment to clear it," Monroe said. "Then we run into the problem of where to put all the snow once we dig it out. There really isn't anywhere that will hold this much snow."

Many Scotland County businesses were closed Wednesday as efforts were made to begin digging out from the storm. Scotland County R-I School District let out early Monday afternoon and remained closed the remainder of the week, before returning to session on Monday, with buses traveling on hard surface roads only.

The United States Post Office in Memphis was open on Wednesday, but did not make deliveries as no mail trucks were able to make it to Memphis that morning.

The Memphis Democrat, which prints in Ottumwa, IA, was distributed a day late due to the storm.

By Wednesday afternoon, most of the main routes were reopened for traffic in the county.

The most difficult job fell to the Scotland County Road and Bridge Department, which is tasked with maintaining more than 500 miles of county roads.

Whitney reported that approximately 70% of the counties roads had been opened when crews finished work on the second day of cleanup at 1:00 a.m. Friday morning.

Road boss Mark Drummond indicated the eight-man county crew burned the candle at both ends for a four day period, with the county's five road graders running well past midnight on Wednesday through Saturday.

"We started out simply trying to open up a one-lane path to every citizen to allow them to get out or emergency services to have access to get to them if needed," Drummond said.

The county's newest road grader chalked up 340 miles forward, and 17 miles backwards, over the four day stretch, with its operator logging 77 hours.

Drummond said in the four-day span his crews burned through just shy of 2,000 gallons of fuel while operators performed 135 hours of overtime.

"By Saturday we were just 20 to 25 miles shy of having the county completely opened up," Drummond said. "Now we'll turn our attention to trying top widen out the bus routes and other areas, but there are going to be some spots that will remain one lane because there is just too much snow there to move."

The road boss reported areas where the snow banks are taller than the cabs of the tractors. He highlighted one stretch of road that took 2 1/2 hours to clear 1/4 of a mile because of the height and density of the snow.

Drummond participated in a conference call with State Emergency Management Agency officials this week. The SEMA agents indicated that federal aid likely will be available to help offset some of the added expense incurred in the initial 48 hours of response to the blizzard emergency. That likely would mean approximately $15,000 of reimbursement for the county road department.

"I cannot sing the praises of my guys enough," Drummond said. "They put in a lot of work. Just as impressive was the cooperation between city, state and county crews as well as all of the help local residents provided with private equipment. It was a group effort."

Scotland County Hospital Admissions & Dismissals

ADMISSIONS: 10/10/16 – Owen Nicholas Briggs, Memphis; Charles Burks, Sr., Wyaconda 10/11/16 – Stephanie Martin, Memphis; Lejric Martin, Memphis; Tyler Scott Ramer, Luray 10/13/16 – Finley Antal, Downing 10/16/16 – Willis Martin, Arbela; Tim Farley, Memphis 10/17/16 – Sheila Owings, Memphis; Shelbi Cline, Memphis 10/18/16 – Dominic L. Cline, Memphis; Vera Tague, Wyaconda; Morris Walker, Memphis 10/20/16 – Gracia Murphy, Keokuk, IA; Ruby Murphy, Keokuk, IA

DISMISSALS: 10/11/16 – Owen Nicholas Briggs, Memphis 10/12/16 – Lejric Martin, Memphis; Stephanie Martin, Memphis 10/14/16 -Finley Antal, Downing; Tyler S. Ramer, Luray 10/18/16 – Charles Burks, Sr., Wyaconda; Sheila Owings, Memphis 10/20/16 – Tim Farley, Memphis

Scotland County Commission Meeting Minutes

Thursday, October 13, 2016

PLACE OF MEETING: Scotland County Courthouse Commission Chambers

The meeting was called to order at 9:00 a.m.

PRESENT WERE:  Presiding Commissioner: Duane Ebeling; Eastern District Commissioner, Danette Clatt; Western District Commissioner, David Wiggins; and Deputy County Clerk, Nancy McClamroch,

Commissioner Wiggins moved to approve the consent agenda; seconded by Commissioner Ebeling. Motion carried 3-0.

The minutes from October 13, 2016 were presented. Commissioner Wiggins moved to approve the regular session minutes; seconded by Commissioner Clatt.  Motion carried 3-0.

Commissioner Ebeling signed Court Orders- #16-2016 to 30-2016.

Dave Davison with NEMO Regional Planning visited with the Commissioners.

Irvin Oberholtzer talked with the Commissioners about Route Y road conditions.

Seeing no further business, Presiding Commissioner Ebeling adjourned the meeting at 12:00 p.m.

The Scotland County Commission adjourned to meet in regular session on Wednesday, October 19, 2016.


Wednesday, October 19, 2016

PLACE OF MEETING: Scotland County Courthouse Commission Chambers

The meeting was called to order at 8:30 a.m.

PRESENT WERE:  Presiding Commissioner, Duane Ebeling; Eastern District Commissioner, Danette Clatt; Western District Commissioner, David Wiggins; and County Clerk, Batina Dodge.

Commissioner Clatt moved to approve the consent agenda; seconded by Commissioner Wiggins. Motion carried 3-0.

The minutes from October 13, 2016 were presented. Commissioner Wiggins moved to approve the regular session minutes; seconded by Presiding Commissioner Ebeling. Motion carried 3-0.

Kathy Kiddoo, Treasurer, reported the funds formerly requested by the Pauline Cemetery Association have fully been expended for maintenance of the cemetery.

Ryan Clark, Road and Bridge Supervisor, discussed current projects and equipment with the Commission.

Tom Shannon called to inquire about purchasing rock for the Village of Granger.

Jonathan Reiff presented an updated nutrient management plan for a proposed CAFO.  A public hearing for consideration of the permit application was set for November 10, 2016 at 10:00 a.m.

Seeing no further business, Presiding Commissioner Ebeling adjourned the meeting at 12:00 p.m.

The Scotland County Commission adjourned to meet in regular session on Thursday, October 20, 2016.

Missouri State Auditor, Nicole Galloway, visited with Scotland County Elected Officials from 1:15 p.m. until 2:00 p.m.

SC Little Paw’s to Host Fall Fest October 29th


Would you like your children, daughters or sons, to have a great day of fun, dancing and playing group games with the Scotland County High School Little Paws?  Then mark October 29th on your calendar because from 9:00 a.m. -2:00 p.m. at the Scotland County High School, a day of learning large group and small group routines, and playing games with the SC Little Paws is something your child can look forward to.  The day will also include snacks and cheek cheers.

Parents are encouraged to attend their child’s performance of their routine at 2:00 p.m.

The cost for the day will be $15, which includes a t-shirt and snacks.  The children will need to bring a sack lunch.

Please sign up by October 21st so we can make sure each child receives a t-shirt.  The pom clinic is open to all girls and boys from three years to 8th grade.  Call Marie Brown at 465-2036 to register or with any questions.

We will also have our Yummy-Lix Lollipops available to the children for fifty cents each if they are interested.  And if you did not receive a pom calendar we will have some available for $5 each.

Hope to see you and your child/children on the 29th!

Downing House Hosts Candlelit Tour of the Past


The Downing House Museum Complex and members of the community hosted an “Evening at the Museum – Candlelit Tour of the Past” this past weekend, October 14th and 15th.  Approximately 240 people attended the event, raising $1,200.00. Volunteers portrayed various characters and wrote their own dialogue for the two-night performance.  Characters included: a one-room school teacher (Lois Quenneville), William Downing (Joe Fulk, who also provided the welcome), Dr. A. M. Keethler (Harlo Donelson), Ella Ewing (Teresa Cotton), the Depot ticket master (Tom Cotton), Tom Horn (Jeff Dyer), a Civil War soldier (Chris Kempke), a barber (Larry Riney), Granny Green (Anna Lynn Kirkpatrick), and a blacksmith (Frank Wineinger).  Tour guides for the evening included Lynette Dyer, Rhonda McBee, Leslie Clark, Mary Ann Kirkpatrick, Janet Hamilton, Brooke Wineinger, Angie Wentworth, Elle Wentworth, Melissa Miler, Gary Miller, Angela Westhoff, Scott Westhoff, and Jan Slayton.  Box office volunteers were Debbie Seamster, Ruth Ann Cairn and Pam Shalley.  Sheila Berkowitz made the flyers, tickets and videotaped the event.  Pam Shalley served as photographer.  Elaine Forrester provided refreshments including cookies, punch and wassail and Alisa Kigar’s 4-H group donated some of the cookies.







Photos by Pam Shalley

Hospital Pharmacy Celebrates National Pharmacy Week      

Scotland County Hospital Pharmacy staff members (L to R) Dani Waterman, CPhT, Matt McKee, RPh, and Jennifer Laws, BSPS will be honored as part of National Pharmacy Week October 16-22.

Scotland County Hospital Pharmacy staff members (L to R) Dani Waterman, CPhT, Matt McKee, RPh, and Jennifer Laws, BSPS will be honored as part of National Pharmacy Week October 16-22.

The Scotland County Hospital’s Pharmacy Department is celebrating National Pharmacy Week, October 16 –  22.  Pharmacy Week acknowledges the invaluable contributions that pharmacists and technicians make to patient care in hospitals, ambulatory care clinics, and other healthcare settings.  During Pharmacy Week, Scotland County Hospital celebrates and recognizes the significant role that our Hospital Pharmacy plays as a member of the healthcare team.

The Hospital’s Pharmacy Department is staffed by Matt McKee RPh, Director of Pharmacy, Jennifer Laws BSPS, Supervisor of the Pharmacy Department and Danielle Waterman CPhT, Certified Pharmacy Technician.  No matter the time of day or night, our physicians can write an order for a medication for our in-patients and the medication will be administered promptly after interactions have been checked, thanks to the staff in the Pharmacy Department and their cooperation with the physicians and nurses at Scotland County Hospital as well as the staff of Scotland County Pharmacy and Blessing Hospital pharmacists.

Many patients and their families are not aware that the Hospital’s pharmacy staff play a critical role in preventing medication errors, collaborating with other disciplines to optimally manage patients medication needs, improving safety and patient outcomes, and advising prescribers on the best drug choices, all while maintaining the proper inventory to meet the needs of the patients.

Although medicine can make you well, it can also harm you if it is not taken the right way. That’s why you need to know all you can about all the medicine you take. While you’re at Scotland County Hospital in Memphis, MO, the pharmacy staff is here to make sure that you receive the best and safest medications that aid you in your comfort and recovery.

Scotland County Speedway to Host Memphis Fall Nationals this Weekend


Racing action will return to the Scotland County Speedway this weekend for the annual Memphis Fall Nationals. The local track will host a two-day show October 21st and 22nd featuring modifieds, stock cars, sportmods, hobby stocks, sport compacts and late models.

With temps expected be in the high 60’s as highs and around 50 for the lows, the racing will continue this weekend at the Scotland County Speedway for the Fall Nationals,” said promoter Mike Van Genderen. “This show has been a huge tradition for many years and has become one of the favorite shows for many racers.”

Curt Marks of Dubuque Moving and Storage has added to the late model purse, making it $1,000 to win, which should add to the field of fastest cars at the speedway.

The track will host open practice for all classes from 3 to 5 p.m. on Friday.

Hot laps will start at 7 p.m. on Friday night and at 6 p.m. for Saturday’s show.

With modifieds, sportsmods, stock cars and now late models all vying or a $1,000 top prize, the track is expecting a large car count as the 2016 racing season winds down across the Midwest.

The races will also be broadcast live on Speed Shift TV at www.speedshiftTV.com.

Cayden Carter captured victories on both nights of the Memphis Bottom Heavy Nationals held at the start of the month at SCS with his 10C modified. The Oskaloosa driver will be looking to keep his streak alive.

Tommy Elston was the winner in the late models while Jason Cook and Jeff Mueller staged a battle in the stock cars, splitting the wins.

More than two dozen sportmods participated in the Bottom Heavy Nationals, with the stock cars and modifieds also more than 20 racers, numbers the Fall Nationals should duplicate or exceed.

Grandstand tickets are $15 for adults and $7 for students. Pit passes will be $30 nightly or $55 for the two-day show.

For more info contact Mike Van Genderen at 6441-521-0330.

Missouri Department of Insurance Offers Free Assistance To Seniors During Medicare Open Enrollment 

Jefferson City, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Insurance is encouraging Missourians eligible for Medicare to review their plan options and costs during this year’s open enrollment. To help Missouri consumers choose a plan that best meets their needs, the department offers free assistance through the CLAIM program.

CLAIM provides unbiased help to Missourians on Medicare and their caregivers. During the annual open enrollment period, which runs October 15 through December 7, consumers can change their Part D drug coverage or Medicare Advantage plans.

“Plans and prices can change from year to year and what you had last year may not be what is right for you this year,” said John Huff, director of the Insurance Department. “Contacting a CLAIM counselor could result in better coverage, more savings or both.”

Missouri consumers can ask questions by phone or arrange one-on-one counseling by calling 1-800-390-3330 or visiting missouriclaim.org. The website also offers a list of free open enrollment events that CLAIM is hosting throughout Missouri during open enrollment.

CLAIM can also assist consumers, who have limited income, determine if they qualify for programs to help lower the cost of prescription drugs.

Consumers with complaints or questions about insurance can call the department’s Insurance Consumer Hotline at 1-800-726-7390 or visit insurance.mo.gov.

About the Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions & Professional Registration

The Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration (DIFP) is responsible for consumer protection through the regulation of financial industries and professionals. The department’s seven divisions work to enforce state regulations both efficiently and effectively while encouraging a competitive environment for industries and professions to ensure consumers have access to quality products.

Haunted House/Safe Stops Coming Soon!


by Andrea Brassfield

With Halloween less than two weeks away, local organizations are preparing activities for area trick-or-treaters.  On Thursday, October 27th, the Scotland County Care Center is hosting their first annual Haunted House.  The event will be open from 5:00-7:00 p.m. and admission is a free will donation.  The Haunted House will be located at the front entrance/activity room of the Care Center.  Everyone is invited.

The Memphis Area Chamber of Commerce is also hosting their annual Safe Stops on Monday, October 31st from 4:00-6:00 p.m. Children may visit Memphis Area Chamber of Commerce members for Trick-or-Treating.

You will see a bright orange flyer at participating businesses which have treats for the costumed little ones.  Crossing guards will also be posted at each corner of the Memphis Square where most of the members will be set up.

There are several MACC members who do not have a store front on or near the square, but do have treats at their business locations on Highway 136 and Highway 15.  Names of the participating MACC businesses will be published in the Memphis Democrat.  Only those businesses with an orange flyer are officially recognized as a Safe Stop.  A parent or adult should accompany the children.

As a reminder, Harlo Donelson is offering a Halloween Candy Buy Back.  The dental office will pay $4.00 per pound for your goodies, $3.00 he will give to you and $1.00 will be donated to the reading program at the elementary school.

Along with the candy and costumes comes the need for added caution as youngsters venture out onto the streets to trick-or-treat.  Drivers are asked to be extra safe this weekend.  Popular trick-or-treating hours are from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. so be especially alert for kids during those times.

Children should be reminded to walk with an adult, remain on well-lit streets, if sidewalks aren’t available, walk on the far edge of the roadway facing traffic, and never cross between parked cars or out of driveways.

Have a Safe and Happy Halloween!!!

Chinese Delegates Agree to Buy $2.1 Billion More U.S. Soybeans

DES MOINES (Oct. 14, 2016) – Six weeks ago, Chinese buyers committed to purchase nearly $1.8 billion worth of U.S. soy, totaling 146 million bushels of U.S. soybeans. Friday, Chinese buyers made an even larger commitment, signing contracts worth $2.1 billion of U.S. soy, or 5.1 million tons.

The new commitments were signed at a ceremony held in Des Moines and attended by seven of the top Chinese buyers of U.S. soy, Chinese commerce officials, top Iowa state officials and representatives from the U.S. soy industry. The signing ceremony was hosted by the U.S. Soybean Export Council (USSEC) and the Iowa Soybean Association. Governor Terry Branstad, Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds and Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey were in attendance.

Iowa Governor Terry Branstad talked about the trust, honor and respect that have helped foster the long relationship between Chinese president Xi Jinping and U.S. soybean farmers, sharing a photograph that shows the Chinese leader’s first visit to Iowa in 1985. “It’s pretty neat to have the president of China call you an ‘old friend,’” he stated.

This year, U.S. soybean farmers are projected to export a record amount of soy and soy products, up from 62.88 million metric tons of soy and soy products, valued at $27.7 billion, in 2015. International buyers are turning to U.S. soy for a variety of reasons, including its quality, sustainability and reliability, to name a few.

China Chamber of Commerce for Import & Export of Foodstuffs, Native Produce and Animal By-products (CFNA) president Brian Zhenhu spoke about the trade collaboration between the U.S. and China. “This signing ceremony is just one manifestation of our cooperation,” he said.

These sentiments were echoed by the U.S. soy industry. “We were honored to be joined by a group of Chinese provincial officials and crush company representatives, who traveled 7,000 miles to meet with U.S. exporters to sign 16 purchasing agreements,” said Jim Miller, USSEC chair, American Soy Association (ASA) director and Nebraska soybean farmer. “These agreements are an example fo the strong partnerships between the U.S. soy value chain and the international buyers who purchase our crop.”

The U.S. Soybean Export Council connects U.S. soybean farmers with opportunities to improve human nutrition, livestock production and aquaculture. This mission is accomplished with a science-based technical foundation and a global network of partnerships including soybean farmers, exporters, agribusiness and agricultural organizations, researchers and government agencies.

For more information, contact Lisa Humphreys at (636) 449-6040 or LHumphreys@ussec.org

RICHARD W. BILLINGS (8/23/1946 – 10/17/2016)


Richard Wayne Billings, 70, of Gorin, died Monday, October 17, 2016 at Scotland County Hospital in Memphis.

He was born the son of Ross “Shorty” and Stella Margaret (Davis) Billings on August 23, 1946 on a hill in Scotland County.

Richard graduated from Wyaconda C-1 High School.   He joined the United States Army, attaining the rank of Sergeant, before being discharged in 1972.

He married the former Beverly Marie Hicks on May 28, 1988 in Kirksville.   She survives.

Richard worked as a machine operator at Metzler Automotive in Keokuk.  He was member of the United Steel Workers #444. Upon retirement, he devoted his time to farming.

He was a member of the American Legion and a former member of the Bible Grove Saddle Club.

Richard had a special interest in cattle, AC tractors, and his dog Ruby.   He was fond of his horses, cows, and dogs.   He always looked forward to reading the NEMO Trader when it came out.   Richard especially enjoyed spending time with his family and friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents; a brother, Tom Billings; and a stepson and stepdaughter-in-law, Chris and Cindy Van Hoozen.

He is survived by his wife, Beverly, of the home; his children, Lesia (Rick) Hunziker and Les (Erin) Billings of Kahoka and Kimberly (Kevin) Carr of Warsaw, IL; stepchildren, Jennifer (Troy) Esser and Shawna Stone and special friend, Bubba Hauk, of Memphis; grandchildren and step-grandchildren, Raelynn, Logan, Lauren, Vince, Garrett, Wyatt, Clint, Laura (Craig), and Trent (Amber); step grandchildren, Nichole (Jimmy), Caleb, John, Whitney, Emma, Grace, Phillip, Katie (Colton), Mason, Kenny, Jaycen, Heather (David), Carrissa (John), Nakiya, Kody and Kaleb; 22 step-great-grandchildren; numerous brothers and sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, and friends.

Funeral services will be at noon on Thursday, October 20, at the Gerth Funeral Chapel in Memphis with Shawn McAfee, pastor of the Peaksville Christian Church, officiating.   Burial will follow in the Etna Cemetery.

Military rites will be performed by the Wallace W. Gillespie Memorial V.F.W. Post #4958 of Memphis.

Visitation is prior to the service, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., Thursday, at Gerth Funeral Home.

Memorials are suggested to the Scotland County Cancer Fund or the Clark County Local Cancer Fund and can be left at or mailed to the Gerth Funeral Service, 115 S. Main St., Memphis, MO 63555.

Online condolences may be sent to the Billings family by signing the online guest book at gerthfuneralservice.com.

Arrangements are under the direction of the Gerth Funeral Service.

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