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Archive | July, 2017

Admiral gas station robbed

The Admiral Gas Station, 194 S. Main, in Cedar Springs, was robbed on Thursday, July 28. Post photo by J. Reed.

by Judy Reed

The Admiral gas station at the corner of Main and E. Muskegon St (17 Mile) was the scene of an unarmed robbery Thursday morning.

According to the Kent County Sheriff Department, the robbery occurred about 9:22 a.m. The clerk told police that a white male in his late 20s came in and demanded money. He was described as wearing a white shirt, blue baseball cap, and having facial hair.

The suspect fled the scene in a blue Oldsmobile Intrigue. A Kent County Sheriff Deputy later located the suspect and vehicle at the rest area on US131 near 10 Mile Rd. The suspect led the deputy on a short foot pursuit, then managed to return to his vehicle and flee the scene. There was then a short vehicle pursuit, which was terminated on 10 Mile Rd.

The suspect was identified and the case is currently being investigated by detectives. His name has not yet been released.

 

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Happy birthday, Cedar Springs Post

By Post editor, Judy Reed

What were you doing, in July, 29 years ago, when the Cedar Springs Post was born? Some of the headlines for July 1988 included:

  • USSR launches Phobos II for Martian orbit
  • Sting performs first rainforest concert
  • Florence Joyner runs 100m in 10.49 seconds for world record
  • 4 billion tv viewers watch Nelson Mandela’s 70th birthday tribute
  • Michael Dukakis selected as Democratic presidential candidate
  • Pedro Delgado wins Tour de France
  • Gorbachev pushes plan to elect president and parliament in March
  • Cedar board sets millage election to recover earlier budget cuts

Many people that have grown up here (at least those under 30) don’t remember what it was like not to have their own hometown newspaper. The previous newspaper, The Cedar Springs Clipper, served the area well for over 100 years. Once it closed, the area relied on out-of-town newspapers for several years to publish only bits and pieces of Cedar Springs news, much like area newspapers do today. Then on July 28, 1988, Roger and Alice Allen, founders of the Rockford Squire, rented out an office from Sipple TV, on 36 E. Maple Street in Cedar Springs, and started the great little newspaper you still have today—The Cedar Springs Post.

Roger’s daughter, Lois, took over operation of the paper, with her mother Alice, in 1989, and she’s still holding the paper to a strong standard today. The introductory issue of the Post pledged that “the community will once again receive the concentrated attention of its own local newspaper. The newspaper will be dedicated entirely to Cedar Springs and to the Cedar Springs area, and should prove to be the stimulus that the district needs to reach its highest potential.” Those are lofty words, but a promise that we still strive to fulfill today. We try to deliver the news you can use each week. In addition to the regular “hard” news such as accidents and fires, where else will you find what size catfish Johnny caught, who won the spelling bee, what the women’s club did last week, and who was arrested for drunken driving? Nowhere! Because the other papers don’t care but we do. This newspaper is about you and for you. And it will continue to be as long as we’re here.

Many people don’t realize that we wouldn’t know much about the history of our area if weren’t for the local newspapers. The Clipper told us about the early days of our town and the surrounding townships. And we can find most issues on microfiche at the Cedar Springs Historical Museum. That’s 100 years of history! The Post carries on that heritage by having a year’s worth of Post newspapers bound in a book each year. We then give that book to the Museum so that future generations can look back on the history we are living today.

Our readers tell us they love the paper. We continue to print 5,000 copies each week with the bulk delivered to newsstands and businesses, and they are gone within days. We wish we were able to cover even more of your local news and print more copies; but as advertising evolves, our revenues have declined, and so has our budget and our staff. The paper is free to our readers, but printing the paper is not free. We have overhead such as payroll, taxes, equipment, and supplies, along with the cost of just getting the paper printed. The Post is supported 100 percent by local businesses advertising on our pages. We sincerely appreciate those businesses that choose to advertise with us because they know that the newspaper and the information it supplies is important to this community.

Besides our printed paper, you can also visit our website at www.cedarspringspost.com to read some of our news stories, or you can download our e-edition from our website, which is an exact replica of our printed paper, as a pdf. You can also like our facebook page for breaking news and/or updates.

Thank you for letting us into your home each week, and we look forward to our 30th year of serving you.

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Heat from A/C starts afghan on fire

Smoke and flames were coming out the door when firefighters arrived on the scene of a fire at this mobile home last Saturday, July 22. Post photo by J. Reed.

By Judy Reed

A polyester afghan sealing off a window around an air conditioning unit caught fire last weekend in a mobile home in Cedar Springs Mobile Estates.

According to Cedar Springs Fire Chief Marty Fraser, they received the call at 11:07 a.m., Saturday, July 22, for 336 Carol Street. When they arrived on scene at 11:11 a.m., smoke and flames were coming out the front door. And by 11:14 a.m., they had the fire out.

“We had a good response time, and it was a quick knockdown,” reported Fraser.

He said that the fire was contained to the sofa area in the living room. The air conditioner was above it, with the polyester afghan around it to seal the window. Fraser said that the afghan was brittle and stiff, and that the heat from air conditioner started it on fire, which then started the sofa on fire.

The damage to the home was mainly smoke and water damage.

The Kent County Sheriff Department was on scene and helped evacuate the family, which consisted of a mom, dad, and three children, including a six-week-old  baby. Several animals were also evacuated safely.

The family was renting the home, and had no insurance. Red Cross was called in to help render aid.

Sand Lake Fire was automatically toned out for mutual aid, but then told to disregard, as was Rockford Ambulance.

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Wife convicted in husband’s murder

Glenna Duram (right) was convicted last week of murdering her husband, Martin Duram (left), in May 2015. Courtesy photo.

By Judy Reed

A Newaygo County jury found an Ensley Township woman guilty last week of murdering her husband.

Glenna Duram, 49, was convicted Wednesday, July 19, of first-degree murder in the May 2015 shooting of her husband, Martin Duram, 45. The jury deliberated about eight hours before rendering their verdict.

“We are happy Glenna is finally convicted; sad it took over 2 years to happen,” said Christina Keller, Marty Duram’s ex-wife, on behalf of their children and herself. “And we give gratitude and thanks to the 12 fine people of Newaygo that took the time and made the hard decision to convict Glenna.”

According to the original police report, firefighters responded to a garage fire on 128th Street, near Balsam, on Wednesday, May 13, 2015. A neighbor reportedly asked firefighters to check on some neighbors, and when they did, they found a man and a woman inside the home, and apparently deceased.

Troopers from the Michigan State Police Hart Post responded to the scene, and after making the scene safe, determined that the woman, Glenna Duram, was seriously injured, but still breathing. She had two gunshot wounds to the head. Martin Duram reportedly had been shot five times. Glenna was transported to the hospital.

On the following day, when Martin’s three children (from a previous marriage) were going through things in the house, they found a manila envelope with suicide letters written to Glenna’s children and ex-husband. They said she was sorry, but didn’t admit to killing Martin.

According to Keller, Martin and Glenna were married in 2005, and Glenna became his caregiver in 2010 when his health began failing. She said that Glenna managed the money and the bills. About two weeks before the murder, a family member called Martin and told him that his house was in the paper in foreclosure, and was to be auctioned off. He reportedly got a copy of the paper and showed it to Glenna, who said it was a misprint and that she would call the paper. However, papers reportedly strewn around at the scene of the crime showed it was indeed going to be put up for auction.

In an odd twist to the case, the African grey parrot that was the Duram’s pet ended up with Keller after the murder, and began to repeat a conversation he had heard—complete with expletives—that ended with “Don’t f#%&g shoot!”

“After Marty’s murder my kids brought me the bird. He used to be mine and I have another parrot here so it made sense to give him to me,” explained Keller. “Anyway, a few weeks after Bud being here he started ranting in two voices I recognized…so I recorded him and realized what he was saying and it upset me that he saw what happened to Marty,” she said. A video of the bird’s rant can be heard on the Justice for Marty Facebook page.

It had been a year since Duram’s murder, with no arrest, when a family member alerted a television reporter about the bird. “Bud helped us get attention for Marty’s murder and I believe it put pressure on the prosecutor to make the arrest with all the media pressure,” remarked Keller.

Duram is due to be sentenced August 28 on the first-degree murder charge and a firearms charge.

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Post travels to Dominican Republic for wedding

The Post traveled to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic in June, with Amy Johnson and Grant Gould, of Cedar Springs, for a destination wedding! Grant and Amy became Mr. and Mrs. Grant Gould on June 20, 2017 on Bavaro Beach in Punta Cana. They stopped to take a photo on the beach with the Post during their wedding reception, where they celebrated with 40 of their close family members and friends. The Post they are holding in the photo had their engagement inside.
While in the Dominican Republic, the couple went out on the ocean in a boat and went snorkeling, swam with sharks, swam with stingrays, and got kissed by a sea lion on the cheek! “Punta Cana was absolutely beautiful,” said Amy.
Congratulations to the happy couple, and thank you for letting us be a part of it!
Are you going on vacation? Take the Post with you and snap some photos. Then send them to us with some info to news@cedarspringspost.com or mail them to Post travels, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. We will be looking for yours!

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Check out these classic cars

 

This painting of an Old Packard was created by Tim Hindenach and is currently hanging in the Cedar Springs Community Library. Photo courtesy of Claudia Mabie.

Do you love classic and vintage cars? Then you don’t want to miss out on two great opportunities to indulge that passion!

The Cedar Springs Historical Society is holding their annual car show this weekend, Saturday, July 29, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., in the parking lot between Morley Park and Skinner Field. Special guests this year include the Michigan State Police and their special black and gold cruiser, designed to celebrate their 100th anniversary of service. The car resembles the department’s iconic 1937 Ford Model 74 patrol car.

The Kent County Sheriff Department will also be on hand with their mobile command bus. The bus will be open for display and the operator will be available to answer your questions.

The car show helps the museum provide free family programs throughout the year. For details, click here, to download ad.

The second opportunity is to visit the Cedar Springs Community Library, and see the painting of an old Packard (shown in the photo above). It’s one of two new installations hanging at the library as part of the program “Artists, Authors, and You!” The painting is by Tim Hindenach.

The library is open Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturdays 9 a.m. to noon.

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Kent County Youth Fair to kick-off 83 years of family fun and education 

The Kent County Youth Fair (KCYF) opens August 7-12 with more than 50 planned attractions, entertainment, and education for West Michigan families.

From HandiCapable day to the summer learning initiative, Reading for Rides, KCYF aims to reach people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds.

Earlier this year, the Kent County Youth Agricultural Association (KCYAA) announced a major purchase agreement for the organization. In September of 2017, it will officially purchase a large piece of land, with development beginning in spring of 2019. The area will house new fairgrounds for the annual fair along with many other events throughout the year.

“This has been an especially exciting year for the entire fair community,” says Jon Bieneman, President of the Kent County Youth Fair. “While we look forward what the future holds for the Kent County Youth Fair, we are focusing on making these final years at this location exceptionally memorable. It seems appropriate, considering these grounds have been the source of many family memories and growth in our community for the past 82 years.”

This year’s fair theme is “Raising the Steaks.” Event highlights include:

  • Children’s Barnyard petting area full of cute animals to interact with
  • Reading for Rides Day free carnival rides with completed registration on Tuesday, August 8
  • Expanded Ag Adventure Barn and new FairTRADE Educational Trading Cards
  • Handicapable Day rides and luncheon on Friday, August 11
  • Racing Pigs with shows three times daily
  • Free Entertainment Tent with performances daily
  • A full scale Ninja Obstacle Course open daily

To see the full list of events and daily themes, check out the Kent County Youth Fair schedule on their site at https://www.kcyf.org/fair-schedule/ or download the schedule featured in our paper by clicking the link below:

KCYF-2017.pdf

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Creative Technologies Academy names new 6-12 principal

Jennifer Colin, new 6-12 principal for CTA.

Creative Technologies Academy, 350 Pine Street, in Cedar Springs, completed a search and announced the appointment of Jennifer Colin as the new principal of grades 6-12 of the Ferris State University-authorized public school academy.

Ms. Colin begins her new position July 26. The opening was created with the departure of Mrs. Carrie Paddock, the principal administrator of curriculum, assessment, and instruction for all grades. Paddock left CTA on July 1 after twelve years as a teacher and administrator to pursue an administrator/instructional coaching position with Choice Schools, a charter school management company. CTA is restructuring the responsibilities of its administrative team with this transition. Dan George remains as Superintendent/School Leader. Former Dean of Students, Autumn Mattson will assume the title and responsibilities of K-5 Principal and Colin will be the 6-12 principal.

Superintendent Dan George believes Colin’s experience in leadership in one of the most successful public school academies in the state makes her well suited for this position. “We are excited to welcome Jennifer to fill the 6-12 principal position,” shared George. “We had four strong finalists for this position. Jennifer comes to us from West Michigan Academy of Environmental Science where she has served for 14 years, most recently as the interim Secondary Principal for the last year. Jennifer received the Power of One Award from WMAES in 2012 as ‘the employee who goes above and beyond her position, is an inspiration to others, reaches out to the community, and is respected by peers, students, and families.’ She brings a broad range of educational experience and knowledge to CTA.” Colin initiated and established a CTE program in cooperation with Davenport University to provide the opportunity for WMAES students to gain college credit and facilitated Advanced Placement courses to that school’s curriculum.

Colin’s credentials include a Bachelor of Psychology from Taylor University, a Master of Social Work from Grand Valley University, a Master of Education in School Counseling from Grand Valley State University, and a Master of Arts in School Principalship from Central Michigan University. She holds a K-12 School Administrator Certificate, a School Counselor License, and a Master’s Social Worker Clinical and Macro License from the State of Michigan. She has also received specialized training in the Future Leaders Institute.

Jennifer had this to say about joining the CTA family: “I believe all children have the potential to achieve success. It is our job as educators to work with students and their families in providing the opportunity and help that they need to learn, grow, and become young people who contribute in making our world a better place. Creative Technologies Academy shares this important mission. I chose CTA because they are passionately committed to investing in the lives of children by offering a whole-person approach to education which values developing the minds, character, and self-concept of its students.”

Ms. Colin is married to William Colin, and they have one son.

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Eleven charged in Veteran’s Home investigation

The 13-month investigation included dozens of interviews, comprehensive review of all emergency records now detailed in new report.

Michigan State Attorney General Bill Schuette filed charges today in Grand Rapids 61st District Court against eleven former caregivers of the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans, including a Sand Lake woman.

The charges resulted from a 13-month long investigation. Schuette’s investigation began immediately after the Michigan Auditor General issued a report in February 2016 that was highly critical of operations and conditions at the home. The charges filed today flow from one of the findings in the Auditor General report dealing with falsification of room checks at the GRHV.

In order to help ensure the health and safety of veterans residing at the GRHV, regular room checks were required to be performed. However, in many instances, evidence showed that staff did not perform the checks, yet falsely charted that they did.

All eleven former employees were charged with one or more counts of violating MCL 750.492a, intentional inclusion in patient medical records or charts of misleading or inaccurate information.

While the federal Veterans Administration provides oversight of the home, it is operated and managed by the State of Michigan. The former employees being charged came from a private firm.

According to the Michigan Veteran’s Affairs Agency (MVAA), the charges stem from actions that occurred in August 2015.

“At the time of the alleged activities, the individuals charged were employed as certified nursing assistants (CENA) by a former contractor, J2S, who provided CENA services at the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans until Oct. 1, 2016,” reported James Redford, Director of the MVAA. “The former contracted staff members are alleged to have falsified medical documents. A state audit of the GRHV issued on Feb. 19, 2016, indicated that CENAs documented in medical records that member location checks had been completed when they had not taken place.

“Since February 2016, everyone at MVAA and the Michigan Veterans Health System has been working very hard to address all findings of the audit, and substantial progress has been made,” Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency Director James Robert Redford said.

An intentional or willful violation of MCL 750.492a by a healthcare provider is a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 4 years or a fine of not more than $5,000.00, or both. Those being charged include:

Tyisha Toliver, 40, of Grand Rapids, is charged with four counts of violating MCL 750.492a, intentional inclusion in patient medical records or charts of misleading or inaccurate information;

Doris Penny, 59, of Grand Rapids, is charged with three counts;

Eric Anderson, 59, of Holland, is charged with one count;

Jasmine Ferrer, 27, of Wyoming, is charged with one count;

Cary Gerencer, 52, of Sand Lake is charged with one count;

Sheryl Hillyer, 62, of Lansing, is charged with one count;

Lolitta Jackson, 39, of Grand Rapids, is charged with one count;

Emina Kahriman, 53, of Grand Rapids, is charged with two counts;

Michelle Longmire, 49, of Muskegon, is charged with one count;

Roconda Singleton, 39, of Grand Rapids, is charged with one count;

Sequoyah Thomas, 23, of Grand Rapids is charged with one count.

“We owe our veterans a debt of gratitude for their service to our country. Allegations that our veterans are being abused or neglected runs counter to the duty we owe them. These allegations were thoroughly investigated by my office,” said Schuette. “This announcement does not represent the end of scrutiny of the GRHV or the close of the investigation. We will continue to aggressively follow up on any new complaints of abuse or neglect of veterans at the home.”

Anyone aware of misconduct at the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans is encouraged to report it to Attorney General Schuette’s Health Care Fraud Division by calling 80024ABUSE.

A criminal charge is merely an allegation and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in court.

You can find a report from Michigan Attorney Bill Schuette on the investigation into the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans with this story by clicking the link below.

WEB-Report GR+Home+for+Veterans_finalspread.pdf

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JOYCE A. EMPIE

Joyce A. (Bremmer) Empie, a lifelong resident of Cedar Springs, passed away Wednesday, July 12, 2017. She was born December 20, 1930 to Morise and Vera (Porter) Bremmer in Cedar Springs, Michigan. She leaves behind her daughter Jomay (Bob) Brand; grandchildren Dana Brand, Justin (Nikki) Brand, and Katie Brand along with great-grandchildren Gavin, Maddie, and Harper. She also leaves behind to cherish her memory her brothers Arwin “Ed” (Nancy) Bremmer, Rex (Kathy) Bremmer, and Arden (Denise) Bremmer; and several nieces and nephews. Joyce was preceded in death by her husband Stanley, her brother Jack, and parents Morise and Vera. Joyce worked at Beach Elementary for many years and enjoyed camping, hunting and spending time with her family. In High School she was a member of the choir, Future Homemakers of America, a cheer leader for three years and a member of the Red Flannel Queen Court. A memorial visitation was held at Pederson Funeral Home after cremation had taken place.

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