(304) 257-1844

In case you were wondering why we had two of same pages in last week’s Press (puzzles), page 5B was supposed to be a continuation of legal advertisements and 7B was correctly the puzzles.

A glitch in the new print system at the company where the Press is printed caused the problem. They are now aware and looking into it so there will be no repeats.

We thank our advertisers, who have been very cooperative. Their ads are in this week’s edition.

— The Editor

By Ravenna Redman

Director of Social Services

The employees of Grant Rehabilitation and Care Center have chosen Maxine Shrout-Bissell as GRCC Resident of the Week.

Maxine has been a resident of our facility since Oct. 21, 2019. She was born in Moorefield, Hardy County, W.Va. to Abraham and Mary Catherine (Whetzel) Fitzwater on Aug. 5, 1932.

Maxine was the youngest of 10 children. Her brothers are Noah, Russell, Calvin, Loring “Pete” and Jonathan Fitzwater. Her sisters are Naomi Prevost, Susan Cain, Shirley Hose, and Nina Pierce. Maxine is the last remaining member of her immediate family.

Abraham was a farmer, and had a farm in Fort Run, Hardy County. Mary Catherine was a stay-at-home mom. Maxine attended Moorefield Elementary School and graduated from Moorefield High School. She attended two years of college at Potomac State in Keyser, W.Va. She was active at Potomac State, participating in Christian Youth Fellowship, Women’s Residence Association at Reynolds Hall, Women’s Athletic Association, and a member of Sigma Iota Chi.

Maxine was a Federal State Supervisor for over 30 years. She retired when she was 50 in 1983.

She has resided in Arlington, Va., Washington D.C., Florida and West Virginia. One of her favorite places was the farm in Fort Run.

In her personal life, Maxine married her first husband, Joe Allen Shrout on July 13, 1972. He was a W.Va. State Trooper, and he was assigned to the barracks in Hardy County. In 1994, Joe had an aneurysm and was sent to Morgantown and on May 10, 1994, passed away. They did not have any children.

Maxine stayed busy. She began volunteering here at the facility with her friends, Richard, and Janet Bissell. Maxine always called Flip. They had wonderful memories of cutting the apples for the apple butter the facility used to make in the fall. In fact, in 1998, all three of them received the “West Virginia State Volunteers” Award, and in 1999, they received the “Special Volunteer Award.”

Join Monongahela National Forest and their friends and partners, Saturday, June 3, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., for Discover Nature Day at the Seneca Rocks Discovery Center.

Enjoy family-friendly fun and learning for all ages. There will be nature- based interactive exhibits, demonstrations, and activities; be sure to check out the live snakes, birds of prey, and native fish.

Partners and friends assisting and participating in Discover Nature Day are: Trout Unlimited, Avian Conservation Center of Appalachia, Experience Learning, West Virginia Master Naturalists Program, Appalachian Forest National Heritage Area, AmeriCorps, Interact Children’s Museum, WV Department of Environmental Protection and WV Department of Natural Resources.

Call the Seneca Rocks Discovery Center at 304-567-2827 for more info.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled last week on how far the federal government’s regulatory reach extends over rivers, lakes, streams, pools of water, wetlands and more.

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey led a 26-state coalition in an amicus brief in support of the petitioners, Michael and Chantell Sackett in Sackett v. Environmental Protection Agency.

“We now have a clearer definition for Waters of the United States, and we’re pleased the Supreme Court ruled in a way that state lands and waters are less subject to the whims of unelected bureaucrats,” Morrisey said, “The EPA’s confused, convoluted and over-broad understanding of wetlands subject to its regulation would have been costly to property owners who would have spent years and tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars just getting permission from the federal regulators to build on their own property."

“We are also happy to see the Court reject EPA’s request for deference to its misguided new ‘waters of the United States’ rule, which we have led a coalition in challenging. The Supreme Court has now agreed with what we successfully said there: EPA’s new rule is ‘inconsistent with the text and structure’ of the Clean Water Act. Today is a big day for farmers, homebuilders, contractors, property owners and those who care about economic activity not being subject to overreach by the federal government,” Morrisey added.

In Sackett, the Supreme Court embraced the “relatively permanent” test previously described in a plurality opinion from Justice Scalia: “In sum, we hold that the CWA (Clean Water Act) extends to only those “wetlands with continuous surface connection to bodies that are ‘waters of the United States’ in their own right,” so that they are “indistinguishable” from those waters.

As part of Mental Health Month and EMS Week (last week), the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR), Bureau for Public Health - Office of Emergency Medical Services (OEMS) is highlighting a resource available to Emergency Medical Services (EMS) first responders.

Crisis counselors with the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline offer support to EMS workers during times of difficulty and stress.

“EMS and all first responders are heroes, but that doesn’t mean they don’t need support,” said Jody Ratliff, OEMS director. “Not only are they working to balance family and work schedules, but they are dealing with traumatic and challenging events on a daily basis, which makes a huge impact on mental health.”

The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline offers confidential 24/7 access to trained crisis counselors who can help people experiencing mental health-related distress including thoughts of suicide, mental health or substance use crisis, or any other kind of emotional distress.

EMS first responders and all West Virginians in need of crisis support are encouraged to call or text 988 or chat 988lifeline.org.988 also serves as the Veterans Crisis Line (press 1 option). West Virginians seeking referrals for treatment of mental health or addiction for themselves or a loved one can call, text, or chat HELP4WV: 1-844-HELP4WV or www.help4wv.com.

Dreama Kelly, life skills coach and owner of the Your Life Coaching WV in Petersburg, had a presentation at Eastern West Virginia Community and Technical College on the topic of battling compassion fatigue, otherwise known as vicarious trauma and burnout.

Kelly gave examples from her life, detailing ways she could have taken on the trauma of others from horrific stories she was told by patients while working as a nurse’s aide at 17, however, somehow she didn’t, but talked about how there is no guarantee that someone else wouldn’t have.

“Be careful and cautious of how much of someone else’s reality you take in, you accept,” said Kelly, “because you never know when it’s going to take you along with it.”

Burnout was another topic she presented, and gave tips on interpersonal effectiveness skills and ways to maintain healthy interpersonal relationships.

Learn more about Your Life Coaching WV at https://ylcwv.com/

Fairmont State University has released the president’s and dean’s lists to recognize high-achieving students for their academic distinction after completing the spring semester.

Full-time students who earned a 3.4 or better GPA are named to the dean’s list. Full-time students achieving a perfect 4.0 GPA are named to the president’s list.

Grant County students named to the president’s list are Skye Friel and Megan Kite.

Grant County students named to the dean’s list are Gracey Bagley, Chance Berg and Ethan VanMeter.

After receiving support from both the Grant and Pendleton county commissions, steps are being taken to move forward with a new regionalized economic development authority (EDA). This new organization, which will be comprised of voting members from each county, will be headed by Laura Brown, Pendleton County’s current EDA director.

The role of EDAs can be crucial in small areas, as they strive to market their communities to outside businesses in order to bring growth to their regions. They also play a key role in assisting local business development and relocation.

Prior to a decision to regionalize, Grant County’s economic development director Callie Dayton, left the position to pursue other opportunities. However, the county then struggled to fi nd a replacement for Dayton, leaving the position vacant for several months.

So, as regionalization moved forward, Brown was a clear choice to head the group.

Brown is a Franklin native who took over the director role two years ago. Like many, work and later family, took her away from the area after she fi nished college. However, she found her way back to West Virginia just under six years ago.

“In a lot of ways I feel like I have lived different lifetimes,” Brown said. “I had a sales career, stayed home and raised our children and then I came back to West Virginia. Then, for the career that I had at that point, I just didn’t have 10 hours a week to commute. This was prior to Covid. So I worked on getting my master’s degree in education with plans to teach. While I was doing that, I was also the chamber of commerce and CVB [convention and visitors burea] director and I was also a member of the EDA board. So, I ended up teaching for two years and then this opportunity became available, so I applied.”

Brown said while she worked in Pendleton County, she also worked closely with Grant County’s EDA.

“There are a lot of similarities with Grant and Pendleton, even more so than other surrounding areas I think,” Brown said. “Obviously we are small business oriented, just like most of West Virginia, but with here, I think it is even moreso. Tourism wise, both areas have such wonderful assets, then we are also both very agriculture based.”

A Virginia woman is facing charges in Grant County for breaking and entering, lying to an officer and being in possession of multiple drugs.

Tori Lynn Crowell, 28, of 4652 Prather Pl., Woodbridge, Va., was charged with breaking and entering, obstructing an officer, possession of heroin, possession of cocaine and possession of Oxycodone after she was reported, by two separate 911 calls, to have been illegally entering a residence in Maysville.

According to the police report on the incident, on April 28 at approximately 7 p.m. a deputy with the Grant County Sheriff’s Department responded to a call of a woman wearing a pink hoodie and black leggings attempting to enter a locked residence.

When the deputy arrived, the woman was standing besides several bags of luggage that she claimed belonged to her. The woman told the officer “all she was trying to do was get her things.”

The officer asked for her identification, which she said she did not have on her, and instead told him her name was “Manual Toumadi” with a birth date of Sept. 7, 1996. The name of the suspect was later confirmed to be Cromwell and she allegedly confessed to the officer that she had provided a false name.

It was then confirmed Cromwell had active warrants in Virginia.

When speaking with the first reporter who called 911, they said that Cromwell had lived in the residence a few months before. Then, on April 28 she contacted the homeowner and said she had belongings she wished to retrieve from the residence. The owner explained that they were out of town working and were not at the residence to allow her entry. Cromwell said “she had to get her things today.” The owner declined, telling her that the doors were locked and that she was not permitted to be on the property. The owner then asked a nearby neighbor to keep an eye on the residence while the owner was away.

During his investigation, the officer noted that the back door to the residence had signs of forced entry, including dents and gash marks around the door knob and knob latch.

Following a meeting that brought together everyone from local residents and elected officials, local advocates to conservation experts - Grant County may soon be taking an unwelcoming stance against mega poultry houses in the area.

On May 23, Brent Walls, the Upper Potomac Riverkeeper, appeared before the commission to raise concerns about the proposed Roby Road mega chicken house project. Walls explained that there are three river keepers charged with caring for the Potomac River, with their goal being to aid communities in defending their right to clean water. Walls said this effort can take many forms, including legal actions, legislative efforts and overall advocacy.

“A lot of time, this effort is post-impact or post-pollution,” Walls said. “Unfortunately, that is the case many, many of the times. It is very rare that I can get involved in a situation before something happens.”

Walls raised concerns about the recent efforts to expand large scale chicken farming in Grant County, saying that the farms in question are not family farms but are industrial-sized facilities.

“These are not family farms anymore, they are industrial, and they are actually pushing out a lot of the already existing family farms,” Walls said.

He pointed to similar facilities along the eastern shore of Maryland and, more recently, in Hardy County. Walls said he worked in Hardy County.

“Unfortunately, in Hardy County, there is this movement to grow and get bigger and bigger and push out some of those smaller farms,” Walls said. “I’ve seen it. I’ve talked to many of them. They are very leery, they are very scared to even speak up because it is their livelihood at stake.”

According to an article by the Maryland Reporter in 2015, located in the eastern shore area referenced by Walls, the houses in that area “house at least 20,000 birds in a flock. With the birds staying for their six-week growing period, that can be close to 200,000 chickens cycling through a house in a single year.”

Walls said he was concerned that similar efforts would soon spread to Grant County.

“I’ve never had a reason to come up to Grant County except to enjoy it,” Walls said. “To paddle down the South Branch from Smoke Hole and past Moorefield. It’s beautiful but it is in a watershed that, unfortunately, has pollution problems. There has never been an issue up here. You have a ton of fresh water up here, a ton of trout streams - you know the recreational resources you have here. It’s gorgeous and I do not want to see this movement that has happened in Hardy County to move up here.”

Editor - Camille Howard;
News Editor - Erin Camp;
Advertising Manager - Tara Warner Pratt; 
Print Shop Manager - Richard Knight; 
Bookkeeping - Peggy Hughes;
Circulation - Mary Simmons

© 2017-2022 Grant County Press

Go to top