Community mourns death of Sherry Billings
More than 400 persons attended services Sunday afternoon for Sherry Billings, principal at Odessa Middle School, who died early Thursday morning at Centerpoint Medical Center, Independence.
Billings had been a patient at the hospital for the past seven weeks suffering from pneumonia and the effects of hairy cell leukemia.
Sherry Lynn Billings, 60, was born September 29, 1954, in Warrensburg, the daughter of Wilbur L. and Norma Bradbury Ewbank.
A 1972 graduate of Odessa High School, she graduated from Graceland College, Lamoni, Ia., in 1975, attaining a bachelor of science degree in business education. She earned a bachelor of science degree in 2000 and a specialist's degree in 2005 in education administration from Lindenwood University, St. Louis.
She married John Neal Billings on August 30, 1975, at Pleasant Heights Community of Christ, in Kansas City.
Billings had a long career in education beginning in 1982 in Pasadena, Tex. She taught five years at North High School, Wichita, Kan., where she was named district teacher of the year. Her teaching career continued in St. Louis where she taught at East High School, and again was named district teacher of the year. Read more in The Odessan.
Voters to the polls on Tuesday
Lafayette County voters will go to the polls Tuesday to decide on three candidates for hotly contested positions.
County voters also will determine who will represent them in Congress in the Fifth Congressional District, Emanuel Cleaver, Democrat, incumbent, or Jacob Turk, Republican.
Glen Kolkmeyer, Republican incumbent, who is completing his first two-year term in the Missouri House of Representatives, 53rd District, has opposition from Henry Grubb, Democrat.
Kristen Ellis, Democrat, who was appointed prosecuting attorney of Lafayette County by Governor Jay Nixon, is opposed by Weldon "Chip" Perry, former prosecuting attorney.
The other contested race for county office pits Valoree Maycock, Democrat, a Lexington attorney, against Russell Kruse, Republican, an attorney from Concordia. Maycock and Kruse are seeking the office of Circuit Judge, Division II. John Frerking, Higginsville, will retire from the position at the end of December. Read more in The Odessan.
|Downtown to be busy for Halloween events
Downtown Odessa will be a busy place on Halloween, Friday night.
Trick or Treating will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. at participating businesses passing out candy. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Event is for children 12 years and younger.
The Odessan will be one of the participating businesses.
Odessa Chamber of Commerce sponsors this event. Read more in The Odessan.
New chief... J. Scott Newhouse was sworn in as Chief of Police at the Monday night Board of Alderman meeting. Newhouse has worked as a sergeant for nearly 15 years on the Aurora, Colo., police force. photo by Hannah Spaar
Scott Newhouse sworn in as new Odessa police chief
J. Scott Newhouse, a nearly 15-year member of the Aurora, Colo., police department, was sworn into office Monday night as the new chief of police for the city of Odessa.
He will begin his duties here on Monday, November 10.
Salary was set at $57,715 and will increase to $59,500 after six months upon completion of the department directives manual.
City will pay up to a maximum of $2500 for moving expenses.
The employment contract is for one year.
Newhouse, a native of Shawnee, Kan., was a Kansas City police officer for nine years before transferring to Aurora, a city of 300,000 people, in 1995. Read more in The Odessan.
Aldermen vacate position of planner, development director
Odessa Board of Aldermen voted Monday night to vacate the position of Director of Community Planning and Development, ending the employment of city planner and economic development director Will Osborne.
Adam Couch, mayor, said his recommendation to vacate the position was due to budgetary concerns. Osborne's salary was $49,775 plus benefits. His last day in city employment will be Friday.
All aldermen were present for the vote and David Sparks, alderman ward three, was the only vote against vacating the position. When asked for discussion before the vote, no aldermen spoke.
Osborne was hired by the city in March 2013.
After the vote to vacate the position, the board approved Sparks as liaison between the Board of Aldermen and the Economic Development Council. Read more in The Odessan.