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The Florala News
Florala , Alabama
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March 28, 2012     The Florala News
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March 28, 2012
 

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Sma)Jtown .......... 2i7 VV COTA BT SHELTO!,.! %/.",, 98584  ',","-4 : ESTABLISHED ! 900 Location Of One Hundred Forty Consecutive Annual Masonic Celebrations ONE HUNDRED TENTH YEAR WEDNESDAY NUMBER 52" 8 PAGES PRINTED ON ! 00% RECYCLED PAPER MARCH 28, 201 2 50 PER ISSUE (SALES TAX lNCLUDED)' WHAT A PRMLEGE it was to attend the National Medal of Honor Memorial Service, Sunday, March 26, honoring Sgt. Rodney John Evans, son of the late John Cecil and Annie Evans. The program was sponsored by the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Post 6622, Opp, AL. The  Citation printed in the program says it all: : CITATION ii For the President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pride in presenting the Medal of Honor (Posthumously) to Sergeant Rodney John Evans, United States Army, for conspicuous gal- lantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond th'e call of duty while serving with Company D, 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Calvary Divi- 'sion, in action against enemy aggressor forces at Tay : Ninh province, Republic of Vietnam, on 18 July 1969. Sergeant Evans distinguished himself while serving as a squad leader in a reconnaissance sweep through heavy il vegetation to reconnoiter, a strong enemy position. As the force approached a well-defined trail, the platoon scout warned that the trail was booby-trapped. Sergeant Evans led his squad on a route parallel to the trail. The : force had started to move forward when a nearby squad was hit by the blast of a concealed mine. Looking to his right Sergeant Evans saw a second enemy device. With ! complete disregard for his safety he shouted a warning to his men, dived to the ground and crawled toward the  mine. Just as he reached it an enemy soldier detonated the explosive and Sergeant Evans absorbed the full im- pact with his body. His gallant and selfless action saved his comrades from probable death or injury and served :: as an inspiration to his entire unit. Sergeant Evans'gal- lantry in action as the cost of his life were in keeping with the highest tradition of the military service and re- flect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United : States Army. ANOTHER BEAUTIFUL shot of a butterfly taken by niece, Brenda S. Scott of Tallahassee, FL. (http: / / BEND Y.shutterpoint.com) REMEMBER the days when The Florala News used to publish personals, who visited whom, etc. Well, Sa- : mantha McDaniel contributes the following: By acci- dent, I stumbled upon a website: http://www.florala- history.com. I found these things that were published in The Florala News in 1911 - "things of interest" type stuff... 27 April 1911 - d. Sudden death of Mrs. Sallie A. McDaniel, at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Chas. Stewart, at Paxton on Friday, April 21st. Her granddaughter was Miss :i Vonceil Stewart. She was 68 years old and moved to Florala from Rose Hill, several years ago. She leaves 7 children: Miss Lillie Hagie, Century, Fla.: Mrs. Char- ley Stewart, Paxton; Mrs. Frank Jones of Troy; Milton McDaniel, of Greenville; Mrs. Sandy Sanderson, Grady McDaniel and Miss Mattie McDaniel of Florala. Burial at Florala Cemetery on Saturday. Then further down: 11 May 1911 - d. J.R. Moseley returned from Florala last Sunday, whither he had gone to attend the burial of his sister, Mrs. Sallie McDaniel of Florala - Marianna Courier. Further down... 17 August 1911 - see ROSE page 2 The Florala News 1155 Fifth Street Florala, AL 36442 IIItlI!I!UI!III!I!I[I!!IIII Honoring Florala's own fallen i'00ero Sunday, March 25 was observed as the National Medal of Honor Day. A local hero, Army Sergeant Rod- nay J. Evans, was honored with a memorial service on this day in Florala at Beau- tiful Lake Jackson. The event was sponsored by the Opp VFW Post 6622. Sgt. Evans was killed while serving the U.S. Army in Company D, 1st Battal- ion, 12th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Calvary Division as a squad leader in a reconnais- sance sweep near the Tay Ninh Province in the Repub- lic of Vietnam on July 18, 1969. He was posthumously awarded the Medal of Hon- or. The citation that accom- panied this award states "For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty..." 0000 Sgt. R0dney John Evans FLORALA MAYOR ROBERT WILL--SON, Susan Herrin and State Representative Mike Jones took part in the memorial service honoring Sgt. Rodney J. Evans. (Photo by Merle Woodham) Family members of Sgt. Evans attending the car- THE CONGRESSIONAL MEDAL OF HONOR (Photo by Precision Image Photography of Florala) emony included sister, Patty Ann Mika; nephew, Eric Clary; children of his late brother Wyman Evans: Pamela Stewart, husband, Paul, and children Rachel and Sarah, Joseph Rodney Evans; cousins, Joe R. Ev- ans, Joey and Suane Evans, Chuck and Jill Stevenson, Charlie, John and Betsy Stevenson, John and Inez Evans and Henry Evans. Guest speaker was John B. Givhan of Andalusia, AL, a veteran who spoke of his time serving in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War. Florala Mayor Robert Williamson delivered the following speech during the service: "No matter what great accomplishments might come the way of her citizens, in Florala's timeline, it is ... Givhan unlikely that any endeavor will measure even a remote proximity to the sacrifice made by Rodney J. Evans over forty years ago. "Rodney and his twin brother, Wyman, were born in Chelsea, Massachusetts, July 17, 1948. They traveled through foster care, finally arriving at a home affiliat- ed with the Alcazar Shrine see EVANS page 3 DTF arrests Florala man on drug charges Law enforcement person- nel served a search warrant at Ronnie Bettis' residence located at 2065 9th Street in Florala on Wednesday, March 21. The search warrant stemmed from a three month investigation, con- ducted in a joint effort by the Drug Task Force (DTF) and Alabama'Beverage Control (ABC). During the investi- gation evidence showed that illegal activities involving the distribution of crack co- caine were taking place at the residence. At the conclusion of this investigation, the search warrant for the residence was obtained. Due to the large amount of traffic at the residence and the num- ber of persons which often were at the residence, the Covington County Incident Response Team was called upon to secure the residence and anyone who might be there. Crack cocaine and items used in the distribution of crack cocaine were recovered from inside the residence. Ronnie Bettis was ar- rested and charged with three counts of unlawful distribution of a controlled substance, and one count of unlawful possession of a controlled substance and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia. His total bond amount is $800,000. Kenneth Gore and Mack Vickers were also arrested on unrelated charges. Vick- ers was charged with viola- tion of probation and Gore was arrested on failure to appear warrants for bur- glary and theft of property. Special thanks to Opp As- sistant Chief McDonald who is the commander of the In- cident Response Team and all the members that make the team a very important tool in this fight on crime. And to Florala Police Chief Sonny Bledsole and Assis- tant Chief Chris Jackson, their assistance was instru- mental in information gath- ering, and a positive conclu- sion to this case. THE FIRsT TRUSS being put into place on the new West- side Baptist Church building. (Photo by Michelle Willette) Carpenters for Christ at work in Florala by Lisa Windham Three years after West- side Baptist Church mem- bers watched their building burn, they are now watch- ing it being rebuilt. Construction began this week on a new church build- ing thanks to a partnership with the volunteer organiza- tion "Carpenters for Christ". The organization consists of volunteers who assist a "construction need for the Lord's work" by attempting to "build the body of Christ worldwide through physi- cally constructing orphan- see CHURCH page 8