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Today's News

Starke County Commissioners to Revisit Employee Work Restrictions

starke-county-courthouseThe Starke County Commissioners have asked the county attorney to look into work restrictions for county employees who have been cleared to return to work by their physicians but are still under restrictions. Interim EMS Director Keith Emigh asked about the county’s policy during the most recent regular commissioners meeting and was told employees cannot return to work unless they can perform all of their required job duties. The commissioners last week asked county attorney Marty Lucas to further research the issue and placed the matter on the agenda for their meeting this morning. Continue reading

Commissioners Approve Internet Agreement for Grovertown EMS Base

 The Starke County EMS base in Grovertown will soon have Internet service again.

The county commissioners this week approved a contract with Mediacom for Internet, telephone and basic cable television service there at a cost of $89.95 per month. County information technology director Joe Short says Mediacom had a better price than CenturyLink, who quoted $105 per month for just Internet and telephone service. The $89.95 price is based on a three-year contract.

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Starke County Commissioners Approve Ambulance Service Expansion

The Starke County EMS base in North Judson will soon have a paramedic on duty around the clock. The county commissioners approved the expansion of Advanced Life Support, or ALS, service to that base immediately and to Grovertown starting Jan. 1. Knox already has 24-hour ALS coverage. Continue reading

Starke County Commissioners to Discuss EMS Director Salary

starke-county-courthouseThe Starke County Commissioners will discuss the salary for the new county EMS director when they meet this morning. They’re still searching for a replacement for Paul Matthewson, who resigned from the director’s position July 1. Keith Eimgh is serving as director in an interim position until a permanent replacement is hired. First though the commissioners want to review the salary for the job. Continue reading

Starke County Commissioners Name Interim EMS Director

An interim director is running Starke County EMS until the county commissioners can hire a full-time replacement for Paul Matthewson, who recently resigned from the job. The Starke County Commissioners this week unanimously ratified Keith Emigh’s  appointment to that position. They’re accepting applications for the vacancy and hope to have a permanent EMS director hired by the end of September. Continue reading

Starke County Commissioners Reassign Vehicles

starke-county-courthouseStarke County’s new EMS director will be driving one of the recently retired sheriff’s department patrol cars if the commissioners decide a county-owned vehicle is a necessary part of fulfilling those job duties. Continue reading

Starke County Commissioners Table Ambulance Service Expansion

The Starke County Commissioners want a better cost-benefit analysis before they agree to expand the advanced life support service offered by EMS.

Director Paul Matthewson wants to add a paramedic at the North Judson base. Doing so would allow the service to generate more money by transporting patients from IU Health Starke Hospital to other facilities. Right now the Knox EMS base is the only one with ALS coverage. Having a paramedic on duty at another base insures adequate county coverage if an ambulance is out of town.

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Driver Airlifted to South Bend After Wednesday Morning Wreck

The driver of a car that ran off the road, struck an embankment and rolled over east of Knox early Wednesday morning is in serious condition at Memorial Hospital of South Bend this morning.

Brandon Owens, 29, was thrown from the car as it was rolling over, according to information released by the Starke County Sheriff’s Department. The vehicle rolled on top of Owens and back off of him, landing on its top. Owens was apparently in the field for several hours before a passerby noticed the accident and called for help. Starke County EMS and first responders from the Washington Township Volunteer Fire Department assisted a deputy from the Starke County Sheriff’s Department.

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Starke County Emergency Responders Called to Two Accidents Sunday

The Starke County Sheriff’s Department investigated two accidents on Sunday.

At 11:20 a.m., officers responded to a call of a vehicle in a water-filled ditch on State Road 8 and Range Road. The car landed on its roof in the ditch. The driver, Kaitlyn Vukelich of Schererville, and her four-year-old daughter were pulled from the vehicle by a passerby.

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Starke County Commissioners Approve New Ambulance Purchase

Starke County EMS will soon have a new ambulance. The county commissioners last night approved the purchase of a 2013 G-4500 Diesel from Fire Services, Inc. for $113,250. That cost includes equipment and delivery. Money for the purchase is coming from the County Adjusted Gross Income Tax, or CAGIT, Fund. Decals for the rig are not included in the price, but the commissioners allocated an additional $2,000 for those. The ambulance was a demo model used at trade shows and other types of industry events to showcase available options. Fire Services, Inc. was one of two companies that submitted prices. The council and commissioners agreed that Fire Services, Inc. offered the county a better deal.

Knox Woman Dies from Injuries Sustained in Incident

A Knox woman who reportedly jumped out of a moving car has died.

23-year-old Alicia Husband of Knox was a passenger in a vehicle when witnesses say she jumped from the vehicle as it approached the intersection of State Road 8 and 600 East yesterday afternoon. She was traveling with her husband, Donald Husband, 31, of Knox.

She was taken to IU Health Starke Hospital and airlifted to Memorial Hospital in South Bend. She was pronounced dead today shortly after noon.

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Emergency Personnel Called to Accident Scene

Knox accident April 9

Crews attend to an accident at 200 East and 100 South in Knox

Starke County EMS and the Knox-Center Township Fire Department were called to an accident at the intersection 200 E and 100 S. in Knox just before 6:00 p.m. CT Tuesday night. No details were released at the scene, but it appeared that a vehicle hit a utility pole on the south side of the intersection.

More information concerning this accident will be reported at a later time.

Head Start students treated and released following crash

The 15 Marshall-Starke Head Start students whose bus got hit by a truck this morning on the way to school have been released to their

Head Start students were checked out at IU Health Starke Hospital following a bus v. truck crash.

Head Start students were checked out at IU Health Starke Hospital following a bus v. truck crash.

parents. They were all taken to IU Health Starke Hospital to be checked out after bus 37 was hit by a truck as it was crossing Heaton Street at Lake Street by One Stop just before 8 a.m. Continue reading

Starke County Man Dies after Trees Falls on Him

A Knox man died Sunday while cutting down trees.

Starke County Coroner Kris Rannells confirmed that John A. Nolen, Sr. was cutting down trees with his nephew Sunday afternoon when a tree fell on him and trapped him underneath it. Nolen was attempting to guide the tree with a rope as his nephew cut the trunk when it fell.

Starke County Emergency Medical Services and responders from the Bass Lake Fire Department arrived at the scene at an area east of Starke County on 400 South, but Nolen had already died of his injuries. The Starke County Sheriff’s Department and the Starke County Coroner conducted an investigation and Coroner Rannells found that 69-year-old John Nolen, Sr. died instantly at the scene of blunt force trauma.

Starke County EMS Bringing In The Bucks

Paul Mathewson

The Starke County EMS Department is still bringing in more money to the county’s general fund than they had anticipated for this year, as the department has already raked in $622,728 through the end of November – more than $60,000 over their projected revenue for the year.

This has led to the county’s general fund being above the expected collections, and Commissioner Kathy Norem said it was largely due to the new Advanced Life Support service offered by the EMS Department.

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Grovertown Man Injured in Tree Stand Accident

A Grovertown man was injured in a tree stand accident Sunday afternoon in Starke County.

Indiana Conservation Officers, Starke County EMS and the Koontz Lake Fire Department responded to a call that 25-year-old Silas Wait, of Grovertown, had fallen from a tree stand in a heavily wooded area and was unable to move.

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Starke County EMS to Introduce Vehicle History and Use Forms

Paul Mathewson

Starke County EMS Director Paul Mathewson told the county commissioners this week that they are working on a number of changes to policies currently in place, including the implementation of a standardized vehicle report.

Mathewson explained that they are working on developing the vehicle report, which would keep tabs on all ambulances currently in service with details on each vehicle, including make, model, mileage, and years, in order to help facilitate a two-year rotation. Mathewson said he hopes that it will be standardized across the board for the sheriff’s department, highway department, and other departments that utilize county vehicles in an effort to monitor their use and ensure they are properly maintained and replaced when the time comes.

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San Pierre Woman Arrested after an Alleged Battery Incident

An alleged battery incident occurred yesterday in the North Judson area.

Angela Schwei and another woman were reportedly engaged in a verbal argument in the Burger King restaurant on Talmer Avenue and were told to leave. They went out in the parking lot and the argument escalated. Schwei allegedly got out a sharp object and slashed the victim on the leg, causing a gash.

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Three Injured in Two Vehicle Accident

Three people were injured in a two vehicle accident around 8:30 p.m. last night on U.S. 30 just east of the Grovertown Truck Stop.

Starke County police say that a passenger car was northbound on 1100 East, crossed the median, hesitated in the median, and began to proceed into the path of an oncoming semi. The driver of the semi tried to stop and swerved to the right to attempt to avoid a collision, however the driver could not stop. The semi was loaded at the time of the accident.

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Another Letter of Praise for Starke County EMS

Earlier in the week, words of praise were heard regarding the local EMS efforts in the successful transport of a five year old girl who had been struck by a television that fell from a dresser.

Paul Mathewson has shared another letter from the wife of a DeKalb, Illinois truck driver who was rescued after suffering a massive brain stem stroke while driving his semi.

“Because of your coordinated efforts, you were able to locate my husband and transport him to St. Joseph Medical Center in Plymouth for help. After being stabilized in the ER at St. Joseph’s, we were able to transport Steve via ambulance to our home hospital in Illinois. Following treatment he was released, and is currently in home rehab. Although we may never know who you are or see you in person please know that your efforts that morning went above and beyond in our minds and hearts. It is my prayer that God continue to bless each one of you and protect you daily as you continue to serve, and save the lives of others,” wrote Shari Dixon.

Her husband is currently making improvements daily and is able to walk with only a cane, recovered his ability to speak, see, and swallow and has recovered some use of his left arm.

Also assisting in finding her husband who was traveling on U.S. 30 near Grovertown on the morning of Jan. 7, was the Indiana State Police.

Driving a semi can be a risky profession when traveling alone, and struck by a life threatening ailment.

The transport was performed before the local EMS went to Advanced Life Service.