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Archive | April, 2010

Junior (Jupe) Hall

Junior (Jupe) Hall, 85 of Sand Lake,  passed at his Florida home February 14, 2010. He served his country proudly in the Army in WWII. Mr. Hall was preceded in death by his parents, John and Sarah (Cook) Hall; six brothers; five sisters; his son-in-law, Ronald Sosnowski; and his granddaughter, Myah Sosnowski. He leaves his wife, G. Dawn Hall; his children, daughter, Kay Sosnowski and Kay’s family, Devin (Neil) Schaefer, Chad (Katie) Sosnowski, their children, Payton and Gavin; son, Gerald (Amy) Hall and Gerald’s family, Jeremiah (Maria) Hall, Carrie (Stan) Kukla and their children, Caitlen and Hunter, Kristi (Aaron) Rice and their children, Meagen, Kyla, Emily and Cole; son, Larry (Trudy) Hall and Larry’s family, Tammy (Roger) Russell and their children, Nicole, Taylor, Jordan and Zackary, Janet (Russell) Kline and their daughter, Anna Rosemary, Lori (Tim) Warwick and their family, Allie, Morgan, Jacob, Luke; son, Brian (Helen) Chase-Hall and their family, Danielle Waid (Aaron Abelard), Amber Dawn Chase Bishop and her family, Jonathan, Melissa Dawn and Donald, Richard Chase-Hall and son, Derrick; son, Randy (Kjersti) Hall and his son, Jason Hall (Nicole) and baby, Isabel Lorraine. Mr. Hall’s extended family, Alan (Sarah) Chase of Kalamazoo, MI, Duane (Becky) Chase, Kokomo, IN, Bruce (Charlotte) Chase, Rose Bud, AR, Brent (Louise) Chase of Hartford, MI. Mr. Hall leaves a very special couple in his life, his nephew, David and Marilyn Hall of Rockford, MI. It was an unbreakable bond of love. Special people to him were Mary Hall, Jeannie Dawn Chase and sons, Dustin and Jacob and Hilary Chase. Many thanks to Jim Vandenberg or Grand Rapids Veterans Home 1-Blue for his loving care, also to Jodi of Hospice of Michigan, many nieces, nephews, friends and neighbors. Mr. Hall was a life member of VFW and Disabled American Veterans. A memorial service will be held Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 11:00 am at the United Methodist Church, Cedar Springs. Pastor Mary Ivanov officiating. A luncheon will follow the service. Interment will take place at 1:30pm at Elmwood Cemetery, Cedar Springs with military honors conducted by the Kent County Veterans Honor Guard.
Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs.

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NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards

NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards is a service provided by the National Weather Service (NWS).  It provides continuous broadcasts of the latest weather information and forecasts from your local NWS office.  NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards broadcasts important forecast and warning information as quick as possible.

With NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards, you will always have access to potentially life-saving emergency information.  During severe weather, NWS personnel can interrupt routine weather broadcasts and insert warning messages concerning immediate threats to life and property.  A special alert tone can also be activated that triggers an alerting feature on specifically equipped receivers.  In the simplest case, this signal activates audible or visual alarms indicating that an emergency condition exists within the broadcast area of the station.  In the most sophisticated alerting system, receivers equipped with Specific Area Message Encoding (SAME) technology allow listeners to choose which counties and for what events their radio will sound an alarm for when official NWS watches and warnings are issued.

NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards broadcasts warning and post-event information for all types of hazards, both natural and technological.  Working with other federal and local agencies, NOAA Weather Radio is an “all hazards” radio network.  This makes NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards the single source for the most comprehensive weather and emergency information available to the public.

NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards is the voice of the NWS and is provided as a public service by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).  These life saving receivers, that should be as common as home smoke detectors, can be purchased at many retail stores and through mail order catalogues including Internet web sites that sell electronic merchandise.  It provides the timeliest forecast and warning information from your servicing NWS office.  This information can save your life!

Please take the time to learn more about NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards.  More information is available from your local NWS office and through the Internet at the National Weather Service’s NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards web site at www.nws.noaa.gov/nwr.

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Lightning Safety

Lightning can provide a spectacular display of light on a dark night, but this awesome show of nature can also cause death and destruction.  Lightning is the visible discharge of electrical energy.  It is often accompanied by thunder, which is a sonic boom created by the same discharge.  If you hear thunder, lightning is a threat, even if the storm seems miles away and the sky is blue.  The electrical energy from lightning seeks a path to the ground – your home, the trees in your yard, or even you can be the chosen path!


1.    Plan your evacuation and safety measures.  At the first sign of lightning or thunder, activate your emergency plan.  Lightning often precedes rain, so do not wait for the rain to begin before suspending activities.  No place is absolutely safe from lightning; however, some places are much safer than others.  The safest location during lightning activity is a large enclosed building.  The second safest location is an enclosed metal topped vehicle, but NOT a convertible, bike, or other topless or soft top vehicle.

2.    If outdoors, get inside a suitable shelter IMMEDIATELY!  Your only safe choice is to get to a safe building or vehicle.  If you enjoy outdoor activities and find yourself in a place where you cannot get to a safe vehicle or shelter, outdoor safety tips are available at www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov/outdoors.htm.  Although these tips will not prevent you from being hit, they can HELP lessen the odds.

3.    If indoors, avoid water, doors and windows, and using the telephone and headsets.  Turn off, unplug, and stay away from appliances, computers, power tools, and TVs.  Lightning could strike exterior wires, inducing shocks to inside equipment.

4.    Suspend activities for 30 minutes after the last observed lightning or thunder.

5.     Injured persons do not carry an electrical charge and can be handled safely.  Apply First Aid procedures to a lightning victim if you are qualified to do so.  Call 911 or send for help immediately.

6.    Know Your Emergency Telephone Numbers!

For additional information visit NOAA’s lightning safety web site: www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov

The following information, prepared by the Humane Society of the United States, will help you become better prepared to care for your pets in a disaster or emergency.

Don’t Forget Identification

Your pets should be wearing up-to-date identification at all times.
In addition to your phone, include the phone number of a friend or relative outside of your immediate area.  If your pet is lost, you want to provide a number on the tag that will be answered even if you are away from your home.

Find a Safe Place Ahead of Time

Don’t wait until a disaster strikes to do your research.
Evacuation shelters do not generally accept pets, except for service animals, so plan ahead to ensure your family and pets will have a safe place to stay.
If you have more than one pet, you may have to prepare to board them separately.  Make a list of boarding facilities and veterinary offices that might be able to shelter animals including 24-hour telephone numbers.
Ask your local animal shelter if it provides foster care or shelter for pets during an emergency.  Shelters have limited resources so this should be your last resort.
Contact hotels and motels outside of your immediate area to check policies on accepting pets.  Ask about any restrictions on number of animals, size and species, as well as whether a “no pet” policy would be waived during an emergency.
Make a list of pet-friendly places and keep it handy.  Call ahead for a reservation as soon as you think you might have to leave your home.
Check with friends, relatives or others outside of your immediate area.  Ask if they would be able to shelter you and/or your animals, if necessary.

If You Evacuate, Take Your Pets

The single most important thing you can do to protect your pets if you evacuate is to take them with you.  If it’s not safe for you to stay in the disaster area, it’s not safe for your pets.
Animals left behind in a disaster can easily be injured, lost or killed.
Animals left inside your home can escape through storm-damaged areas, such as broken windows.
Animals turned loose to fend for themselves are likely to become victims of exposure, starvation, predators, contaminated food or water, or accidents.
Do not leave your animals tied or chained outside during a disaster; this can be deadly.
If you leave, even if only for a few hours, take your animals.  You have no way of knowing if you will be allowed back into the area.
Leave early; don’t wait for a mandatory evacuation order.  An unnecessary trip is far better than waiting too long in order to leave safely with your pets.

In Case You’re Not Home

An evacuation order may come, or a disaster may strike, when you’re at work or out of the house.  Make arrangements well in advance for a trusted neighbor to take your pets and meet you at a specified location.
If you arrange for someone to take your pets, be sure the person is comfortable with your pets, knows where your animals are likely to be, knows where your disaster supplies are kept and has a way to access your home.
If you use a pet sitting service, discuss the possibility of their assistance well in advance.

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Dealing with a flood

Preparing for a flood:

Make an itemized list of personal property well in advance of a flood occurring.  Photograph the interior and exterior of your home.  Store the list, photos and documents in a safe place.

Memorize the safest and fastest route to high ground.  Assemble a disaster supplies kit containing: first aid kit, canned food and can opener, bottled water, extra clothing, rubber boots and gloves, NOAA Weather Radio, battery-operated radio, emergency cooking equipment, flashlight and extra batteries.

If you live in a frequently flooded area, keep sandbags, plastic sheets and lumber on hand to protect property.  Install check valves in building sewer traps to prevent flood water from backing up into the drains of your home.

Know the elevation of your property in relation to nearby streams and other waterways, and plan what you will do and where you will go in a flood emergency.

When a flood threatens:

If forced to leave your property and time permits, move essential items to safe ground, fill tanks to keep them from floating away and grease immovable machinery.

Store a supply of drinking water in clean bathtubs and in large containers.

Get out of areas subject to flooding.  This includes dips, low spots, floodplains, etc.

During a flood:

Avoid areas subject to sudden flooding.

Even six inches of fast moving floodwater can knock you off your feet and a depth of two feet will float your car!  Never try to walk, swim or drive through such swift water.

Do not attempt to drive over a flooded road.  STOP!  Turn around and go another way.

Keep children from playing in floodwaters or near culverts and storm drains.

After a flood:

Boil drinking water before using.  If fresh food has come in contact with floodwaters, throw it out.

Seek necessary medical care at the nearest hospital.  Food, clothing, shelter and first aid are available at Red Cross shelters.

Use flashlights, not lanterns or torches, to examine buildings.  Flammables may be inside.

Do not handle live electrical equipment in wet areas.  Electrical equipment should be checked and dried before being returned to service.

Where can I find additional safety information?

Turn Around, Don’t Drown are literally words to live by.  This slogan highlights the nationwide flood safety public awareness campaign to help reduce flood-related deaths in the United States.  The poster, a HYPERLINK “http://www.nws.noaa.gov/os/water/tadd/“Turn Around, Don’t Drown sign, window sticker, FLASH card and a NOAA National

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Severe Weather FAQ

1.    What is a severe thunderstorm?

A severe thunderstorm produces large hail 1 inch in diameter or larger, damaging winds of 58 mph or greater, and/or a tornado.

2.    What is a tornado?

It is a column of violently rotating winds extending down from a thunderstorm cloud and touching the surface of the earth.

3.    What is the difference between a tornado and a funnel cloud?

A funnel cloud is also a column of violently rotating winds extending down from a thunderstorm; however, it does not touch the earth.

4.    How many tornadoes usually occur in Michigan every year?

An average of 16 tornadoes occurs in Michigan each year.  From 1950 to 2008, 242 persons have been killed due to tornadoes.  During this same time, Michigan has experienced 920 tornadoes.

5.    When do tornadoes generally occur?

Most tornadoes occur during the months of May, June, July and August in the late afternoon and evening hours.  However, tornadoes can occur anytime of the day or night in almost any month during the year.

6.    How fast do tornadoes travel?

Tornadoes generally travel from the southwest and at an average speed of 30 miles per hour.  However, some tornadoes have very erratic paths, with speeds approaching 70 mph.

7.    How far do tornadoes travel once they touch the ground?

The average Michigan tornado is on the ground for less than 10 minutes and travels a distance of about 5 miles.  However, they do not always follow the norm, and have been known to stay on the ground for more than an hour and travel more than 100 miles.

8.    What is a tornado watch? What is a severe thunderstorm watch?

A tornado/severe thunderstorm watch is issued whenever conditions exist for severe weather to develop.  Watches are usually for large areas about two-thirds the size of Lower Michigan and are usually two-to-six hours long.  Watches give you time to plan and prepare.

9.    What is a tornado warning? What is a severe thunderstorm warning?

The local National Weather Service (NWS) office issues a tornado warning whenever NWS Doppler Radar indicates a thunderstorm capable of producing a tornado or when a tornado has been sighted by a credible source.  A severe thunderstorm warning is issued whenever a severe thunderstorm is observed or NWS Doppler Radar indicates a thunderstorm capable of producing damaging winds or large hail.

Warnings are issued for even smaller areas, such as parts of counties.  “Storm-based” warnings began on October 1, 2007.  The NWS issues warnings for the threatened area in a shape of a polygon.  The “polygon” warnings will only include sections of a county or group of counties, and are usually 30 to 90 minutes in length.  You must act immediately when you first hear the warning.  If severe weather is reported near you, seek shelter immediately.  If not, keep a constant lookout for severe weather and stay near a shelter.

10.    How do I find out about a warning if my electricity is already out?

NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards with battery back-up capability is your best source to receive the warning.  In some areas, civil emergency sirens may be your first official warning.  In addition, if your television or radio has battery back-up capability you may receive NOAA’s National Weather Service warnings from local media.

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Dealing with a tornado or thunderstorm

Plan ahead.  Be sure everyone in your household knows where to go and what to do in case of a tornado warning.

Know the safest location for shelter in your home, workplace and school.  Load bearing walls near the center of the basement or lowest level generally provide the greatest protection.

Know the location of designated shelter areas in local public facilities, such as schools, shopping centers and other public buildings.

Have emergency supplies on hand, including a battery-operated radio, flashlight and a supply of fresh batteries, first-aid kit, water and cell phone.

Make an inventory of household furnishings and other possessions.  Supplement it with photographs of each room.  Keep in a safe place.

What to do when a thunderstorm approaches your area:

Seek safe shelter when you first hear thunder, see dark threatening clouds developing overhead or lightning.  Count the seconds between the time you see lightning and hear the thunder.  You should already be in a safe location if that time is less than 30 seconds.  Stay inside until 30 minutes after you last hear thunder.  Lightning can strike more than 10 miles away from any rainfall!

When you hear thunder, run to the nearest large building or a fully enclosed vehicle (soft-topped convertibles are not safe).  You are not safe anywhere outside.

If you are boating or swimming, get to land and shelter immediately.

Telephone lines and metal pipes can conduct electricity.  Unplug appliances not necessary for receiving weather information.  Use plug-in telephones only in an emergency.

What to do when a tornado warning is issued for your area:

Quickly move to shelter in the basement or lowest floor of a permanent structure.

In homes and small buildings go to the basement and get under something sturdy, like a workbench or stairwell.  If no basement is available, go to an interior part of the home on the lowest level.  A good rule of thumb is to put as many walls between you and the tornado as possible.

In schools, hospitals and public places move to designated shelter areas.  Interior hallways on the lowest floors are generally best.

Stay away from windows, doors and outside walls.  Broken glass and wind blown projectiles cause more injuries and deaths than collapsed buildings.  Protect your head with a pillow, blanket or mattress.

If you are caught outdoors, seek shelter in a basement, shelter or sturdy building.  If you cannot quickly walk to a shelter you should immediately get into a vehicle, buckle your seat belt and try to drive to the closest sturdy shelter.

If flying debris occurs while you are driving, pull over and park.

As a last resort, stay in the car with the seat belt on.  Put your head down below the windows, covering with your hands and a blanket if possible.

If you can safely get noticeably lower than the level of the roadway, exit your car and lie in that area, covering your head with your hands.

If you are boating or swimming, get to land and shelter immediately.

After a tornado/thunderstorm:

Inspect your property and motor vehicles for damage.  Write down the date and list damages for insurance purposes.  Check for electrical problems and gas leaks and report them to the utility company at once.

Watch out for fallen power lines.  Stay out of damaged buildings until you are sure they are safe and will not collapse.  Secure your property from further damage or theft.

Use only approved or chlorinated supplies of drinking water.  Check food supplies.

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Two injured in multi-car crash

Photo by Judy Reed

Two people were injured and three vehicles damaged last Thursday afternoon when a driver reportedly ran a stop sign at Algoma and 17 Mile Road in Solon Township.

According to the Kent County Sheriff’s Department, Merry Barron, 55, of Kent City, was heading east on 17 Mile about 3:41 p.m., in a 1999 Chevy Lumina, when she ran the four-way stop sign at Algoma and struck a northbound 2009 Ford Escape on the driver’s side, which in turn struck a 1999 Dodge Ram. After hitting the Escape, the Lumina then struck the stop sign, careened off the road and struck a tree.

Photo by Judy Reed

Barron was transported to Spectrum Butterworth with multiple fractures. The driver of the Escape, James Burgess, 73, of White Cloud, was transported to Butterworth with multiple minor injuries. Driver of the Dodge Ram, Gilbert Scott, 55, of Sand Lake, did not suffer any injuries, but his truck sustained minor damage.

Solon Township Fire and the Michigan State Police assisted at the scene.

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Missing man found

By Judy Reed

A Spencer Township man was found Saturday near where he was last seen, after having been missing for five days.

A bulletin went out Friday from the Kent County Sheriff Department that Wesley Raymond Brown, 23, had been to see a friend on Stultz Rd NE and left sometime Tuesday morning on his bicycle. A clerk at Ree’s Country Store, on the corner of McClain and Lincoln Lake, also reported that he had come in that day.

On Friday evening tips came in that he was possibly seen in the area of Camp Greenwood, 13564 McClain, east of the store. The Sheriff Department, R.A.C.E.S., and the man’s family started a search in the area Saturday morning. Brown was located by his aunt, sleeping under a tree in the woods, where he had been for five days. He was wearing only shorts and a light shirt when found, and temperatures had been in the 30s and 40s at night.

Brown was taken to the United Hospital in Greenville, but did not have any life-threatening injuries. No comments were released on why the man went missing.

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Food, friends and fun at Community night

By Judy Reed

Free ice cream. Free face painting. Lots of free candy. A petting zoo. Firetrucks. Policemen. And plumes of dust swirling in the air when the AeroMed helicopter landed! Residents got all of that and much more when they attended the 24th annual Cedar Springs Community Night, last Thursday, April 15, at Cedar Springs High School.

“It went really well,” said organizer Isabelle Brace. “We got a lot of positive comments.”

Brace said that 123 vendors rented tables this year, and they had quite a few new businesses. Businesses and non-profits filled the gymnasium and the hallway, and there were some events outside, too, including the petting zoo, which was new.

Brace estimated about 1,200 people attended. “We got 800 food tickets, but not everyone eats,” she said.

The only thing that didn’t go well was the food drive. “We got very few cans,” she said.

Brace said they are looking forward to planning for next year—their 25th event.

The Cedar Springs Post would like to thank all of you that came and visited us at our booth, and congratulations to Gary Mills, who won a free subscription to the newspaper!

Pictures from Community Night:

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CS man named GR firefighter of the year

The Grand Rapids Fire Department has named Joe Dubay, of Cedar Springs, 2010 Firefighter of the year. The selection was made by American Legion Furniture City Post #258.

Joe Dubay, of Cedar Springs, was named 2010 Firefighter of the year by the Grand Rapids Fire Department. Courtesy photo

Joe Dubay, of Cedar Springs, was named 2010 Firefighter of the year by the Grand Rapids Fire Department. Courtesy photo

Dubay, of Platform Truck Company No. 2, was selected as Firefighter of the Year for his tireless work as president of the Grand Rapids Firefighters Union during a time of great transition and fiscal uncertainty. “His devotion to his 23 brothers and sisters facing the loss of their jobs was unwavering and he still clings tightly to the last five of the 23 displaced firefighters who have yet to be recalled,” said Lt. Dan VanderHyde.

Dubay grew up in Grand Rapids and is a graduate of Catholic Central High School. At age 7, it was his grandfather, a Traverse City State Hospital Firefighter, that ignited Dubay’s dream to join the fire service. He realized that dream in October 1991 when he was appointed to the GR Fire Department.

He currently works at the Franklin Street Fire Station, and his company protects the same neighborhood  he grew up in, and where his father, Howard Dubay, still lives.

Dubay and his wife, Amanda, live in Cedar Springs, with their four children.
Firefighter Dubay was recognized at the annual Firefighter of the year banquet in Grand Rapids last weekend.

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