Ruins of 160-year-old stage stop stand as monument to Osage County history

By Paul Schmidt Located west of Burlingame, Kan., just off U.S. Highway 31, Havana Stage Station was a mail stop on the Santa Fe Trail. The stage station and More »

4-H exhibitor results for the Osage County Fair, June 27-30, 2018

4-H clubs’ barn quilt contest placings: North Osage, 1st; Willing Workers, 2nd; Vassar Blue Ribbon, 3rd; Lyndon Leaders, 4th; Burlingame, 5th; Clover Wranglers, 6th; Melvern Jr. Highline, 7th. Photo More »

Open class results for the Osage County Fair, June 27-30, 2018

Canned goods, jams and jellies not only earned ribbons, they also will be used to stock the shelves of home pantries. Placings of open class exhibitors at the Osage More »

2018 Osage County Fair livestock exhibition results

Round robin winners and participants, from left, judge Lauren Prill, KSU Meat Science, Josie Thompson, swine division, Ainsley Corwine, goat division, Morgan Woodbury, beef division, Grace Croucher, swine division, More »

2018 Osage County Fair livestock exhibition results

Round robin winners and participants, from left, judge Lauren Prill, KSU Meat Science, Josie Thompson, swine division, Ainsley Corwine, goat division, Morgan Woodbury, beef division, Grace Croucher, swine division, Kinsley Garrison, goat division, Garrett Croucher, beef division, Addyson Easter, sheep division, and Shayne Miles, horse division. Photo thanks to Osage County Fair.

Winners of livestock exhibitions and the round robin showmanship competition have been released by the Osage County Fair Association, for the fair held June 27-30, 2018, as follows. (Ribbon key and 4-H club key are at the bottom.)

Cheryl Sue Warthen, 70, Scranton: June 11, 1948 – July 8, 2018

SCRANTON, Kan. – Cheryl S. Warthen, 70, of Scranton, Kan., passed away Sunday, July 8, 2018, at Midland Hospice Care, Topeka, Kan. Cheryl was born June 11, 1948, in Scranton, the daughter of Lawrence and Margaret Salsbery Hupp.

Cheryl graduated from Topeka High School. She married Ralph Barnard, they later divorced. She married Mike Warthen on June 28, 2008. He preceded her in death April 21, 2014. Cheryl worked as a caregiver at the Rosa Villa Care Home, in Topeka, for more than 28 years.

Harriet Virginia Whiting, 98, Springdale, Ark. – Feb. 17, 1920 – March 27, 2018

SPRINGDALE, Ark. – Harriet Virginia Whiting, 98, passed away on Tuesday, March 27, 2018, at Circle of Life Hospice Home in Springdale, Ark. She was born on Feb. 17, 1920, to Joseph Samuel Dooty and Edna Mura McIntosh Dooty, in Melvern, Kan.​

Harriett Grew up in Melvern and graduated valedictorian in 1937 from Melvern High School. She wanted to follow her sister in nursing school but was too young. She received a scholarship from the College of Emporia and was hired that summer to work in the office at Newman Memorial Hospital and lived in the nurse’s quarters. In the fall, a position opened up in the nursing school and she was allowed to enter by waiving the age restriction of 18. When she graduated from nursing school, she was too young to take the state boards and had to remain at the hospital as a student nurse until she turned 21. Nursing assignments took her to Kansas City, Kan., and St. Peter, Minn. After she became a registered nurse, she and a fellow nursing student moved to the Hines VA in Chicago, Ill., to begin their nursing careers.

Two injured in rollover accident near Scranton Sunday

SCRANTON, Kan. – A single-car rollover accident near Scranton, Kan., sent two people to the hospital with injuries Sunday.

According to the Kansas Highway Patrol, Brian Kenneth Penn, 36, Emporia, Kan., was driving a 2000 Toyota Tundra eastbound on U.S. Highway 56 south of Scranton at 12 p.m. July 8, 2018, when the vehicle hit debris in the roadway. Penn lost control and the vehicle went off the roadway to the left, rolling one and a half times.

Penn and a passenger in the vehicle, Jennifer Lea Lindsey, 26, Emporia, were both disabled in the accident and transported by ambulance to Stormont Vail Hospital, Topeka, Kan. Another passenger, James Lee McBroom, 24, Emporia, was not injured in the crash.

Topeka woman killed in pickup-train accident near Quenemo Saturday

QUENEMO, Kan. – A 54-year-old Topeka woman was killed in a train-pickup accident Saturday afternoon about a mile east of Quenemo, Kan.

According to the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office daily report, Linda Henderson, 54, Topeka, was driving a 1999 Chevrolet 1500 pickup at about 12:10 p.m. July 7, 2018, when she failed to yield to a flashing railroad crossing at 2800 Alabama Terrace, Quenemo, and was struck by a westbound BNSF train. Henderson was pronounced dead at the scene.

The case is under investigation by the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office. 

Two killed near Melvern in rollover during police pursuit

MELVERN, Kan. – Two people were killed in a rollover accident on Interstate 35 in Osage County Saturday evening, following a pursuit by a Lyon County sheriff’s officer.

According to a Lyon County Sheriff’s Office press release, about 8 p.m. July 7, 2018, a deputy attempted to stop a vehicle at mile marker 142 on I-35. The driver of the 2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser, later identified as Sharnicca D. Cannon, 23, of Tucson, Ariz., refused to stop and a pursuit ensued, heading northbound on the interstate. During the pursuit, it was learned the vehicle had recently been reported stolen during a robbery in Emporia, Kan.

The sheriff’s office reported the driver attempted to exit at a high rate of speed at the Melvern, Kan., exit, at mile marker 160, when the driver lost control, and the vehicle left the roadway and rolled several times.

Coffey County EMS, Osage County EMS, and a Life Team helicopter responded to the scene, but lifesaving measures were unsuccessful. Cannon and the passenger in the car, Anthony E. Krawczyk, 20, Mesa, Ariz., were pronounced dead at the scene. Both victims were wearing seatbelts at the time of the accident.

The crash is under investigation by the Kansas Highway Patrol.

Help Wanted: Part time evening dishwasher

Marilynn’s Restaurant is seeking a part-time evening dishwasher. Apply at 1216 Laing St., Osage City, or for more information, call 785-528-3769.

A Cowboy’s Faith: Highway repairs cause aggravation

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“Road construction ahead. Detour now. Watch for flagman. Be prepared to stop. Follow pilot car.”

Those have been the dreaded orange sign alerts that slowed work commute there and back more than 35 minutes daily.

Highway repair and construction are essential, but it can be very aggravating too.

Well, perhaps not as upsetting as big potholes causing flat tires, damage to springs and motor mount weakening.

For nine years, road to the office has been in terrible shape. Up in the morning and down in the evening, it became a daily dread. Certainly, a complaining conversation piece among coworkers.

After years of patching, re-patching and promises of redoing the whole road, new construction is finally underway.

Of course, that requires a detour. In this situation, complete building of an asphalt entrance to the four offices on top of the hill. Give credit where due. That roadway seems high quality considering it’ll be bulldozed away when the main road’s fixed.

So, instead of coming within just a half mile of work on the highway, entrance is a three-mile crooked back road. It seemed lots further, but odometer shows exact same mileage, although slower driving and stop signs take longer.

Main highway from the ranch to interstate is being all redone too. That’s where there’s been major time loss, waiting until two dozen cars go by on the now one-lane road.

Uncertain if the work really needs done, because the highway hasn’t seemed that bad. Moreover, the state department just recently did a nice job of cover-up on a handful of half-mile stretches. Wasting more taxpayer money seemingly.

KBI issues Amber Alert for 13-year-old Lenexa girl

Update: At approximately 5:15 pm., July 6, 2018, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension located Amber Lynn Rewerts-Schavoni, 13, and detained Deshon D. White, 23, in St. Paul, Minn. The Kansas Amber Alert has been cancelled.


The Kansas Bureau of Investigation has issued an Amber Alert for a 13-year-old girl from Lenexa, Kan.

Lenexa police are looking for Amber Lynn Rewerts-Schavoni, 13, who is described as 5 feet 5 inches tall, 140 pounds, with dyed black hair and blue eyes. She was last seen around 1 p.m. July 4, 2018, wearing black T-shirt with “Sons of Anarchy” logo, black jeans, and carrying a shiny blue billfold, at the Greyhound bus station in Kansas City, Mo. It is thought she may have left on a bus to the greater Minneapolis area or may still be in the Kansas City metro area.

Amber is thought to be with Deshon D. White, 23, 5 feet 9 inches tall, 200 pounds, with black hair.

According to Lenexa police, at approximately 2 p.m. July 4, Rewerts-Schiavoni was seen leaving her residence in Lenexa, near 77th and Quivira, with White. Rewerts-Schiavoni told a parent that she was walking to Oak Park Mall at 95th and Quivira, in Overland Park.

At approximatley 7:50 p.m. that evening, White and Rewerts-Schiavoni were seen on video at the Greyhound bus station in Kansas City, Mo. The pair may have headed to the greater Minneapolis area or may still be in the Kansas City metro area.

The Lenexa Police Department believes that Rewerts-Schiavoni, who was 12 years old at the time of her disappearance, had been coerced by White.  Law enforcement is in fear for her safety and considers her to be in imminent danger.

Anyone who sees Rewerts-Schiavoni or White is asked to call 911. Anyone with other information about Rewerts-Schiavoni’s disappearance or her whereabouts is asked to call the Lenexa Police Department at 913-477-7301 or the KC CrimeStoppers hotline at 816-474-TIPS.

Red, white, blue and hot for the Osage County Fair Parade

Conklin Plumbing’s first place float was red, white and blue from top hat to bottom.

By Jeanette Swarts
Osage City Chamber of Commerce

The annual Osage County Fair Parade, sponsored by the Osage City Chamber of Commerce, was Thursday evening, June 28, 2018. The theme for the parade this year was “Hats Off to Red, White and Blue”.

Diane Michael, parade chairman, did a fantastic job coordinating a variety of entries including the Boy Scouts of Osage City starting the parade as flag bearers, emergency vehicles, including city and county law enforcement, ambulance and fire department, parade marshal Mary Lou Estes, Mr. and Mrs. Osage City Jerry and Marilyn Giesy, floats, golf carts and ATVs, band, politicians, antique tractors, and horses. Even though the heat index was very extreme at parade time, participants were eager to have a great time and the spectators seemed to enjoy the entries.

Kansas educators attend tri-state conference at Rock Springs

ROCK SPRINGS RANCH, Kan.- Forty educators from across Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, and Nevada attended the Tri-State SAE Conference, held June 27-29, 2018, at Rock Springs Ranch 4-H Center, near Junction City, Kan. The Tri-State SAE Conference is a three-day experience designed around increasing student engagement and career readiness through the Supervised Agricultural Experience to ensure that learning and growth happen for every student, every day. SAE is the Work-Based Learning model for Agricultural Education.

Marais des Cygnes Valley FFA adviser Danny Rice attended the conference with 13 other Kansas educators.

Training was conducted in multiple intelligences, modalities, language, and e-moments. Participants integrated this information into lesson plans and shared with their peers. Participants were provided learning modules and student guides newly developed by The Council for Agricultural Education. The intensive training included a focus on teaching methodology and engagement, teacher leadership and personal development, and how to build connections and influence in their school, community and state.

Dennis Dale Combes, 66, Osage City: Sept. 18, 1951 – June 30, 2018

OSAGE CITY, Kan. – Dennis Dale Combes, 66, passed away Saturday, June 30, 2018, at Stormont Vail Hospital, Topeka, Kan. He was born Sept. 18, 1951, in Burlington, Kan., the son of Walter Clinton and Ethel Lorene (Norris) Combes.

Dennis graduated from Reading High School in 1969. He served with Army Reserves after high school. Dennis was the superintendent of the electric line department for the city of Osage City, Kan. 

Filings in the Osage County Courthouse, June 18 – June 22, 2018

The following information was compiled from records at the Osage County Courthouse, June 18 through June 22, 2018.

Hidden History: Former Lyndon mayor, fire marshal orders sanity in Fourth celebrations

By Wendi Bevitt

In the early 1910s, commissioners at Kansas City, Kansas, started pushing for a sane Fourth of July celebration. Up to this time regulations were very limited. Fire related deaths had been reported as 4,500 in 1903, but with increasing fire awareness had dropped to 1,500 in 1914. Kansas City’s “Sane Fourth” model proposed limiting usage of fireworks as well as a cleanup day on the eve of the celebrations to remove trash and other fire hazards in urban areas. At this time, most buildings in Kansas were wood frame, and the chance of accidental fires was a real threat.

In 1915, newly appointed fire marshal Lewis T. Hussey adopted the Kansas City plan and started promoting its benefits in time for the July 4th holiday.

Lewis Hussey grew up in Coffey County, Kansas, graduating from Burlington High School in 1888. His family moved to Osage County, where his father, Jerry, became register of deeds and Lewis served as deputy until 1893.

Lewis eventually became city clerk and later mayor of Lyndon. As mayor, he led the way to the installation of a city water and sewer system, which had mixed reviews among the citizens of the town. He was also elected to serve as state representative from Osage County and also served as state oil inspector.

During his civil service, Lewis pursued a career in insurance, establishing the Metropolitan Accident Association. He then joined others in organizing the Osage Fire Insurance Company in 1908. His experiences as a civil servant and in the fire insurance field made Lewis a perfect choice for Governor Arthur Capper to appoint him as state fire marshal in 1915. Capper had already started instituting portions of the safety measures of the Kansas City fire prevention plan, such as a statewide clean-up day in April, but Lewis was the perfect person to enforce what had begun.

In his new job, Lewis took protecting Kansas citizens very seriously. He admonished that a “safe and sane” 4th of July celebration was the most consistent way for Kansas to observe the day and that it might be “too much to expect a complete return to sanity after the free range that has been indulged in the celebration in years past, but an effort needs to be made in most cities and towns for a more moderate and intelligent form of celebration.”

Osage County Jail Log, June 24 – June 30, 2018

The following individuals were booked into the Osage County Jail in connection with charges or warrants as listed by the arresting agency.

Milton Fredrick Brown Jr., 72, Quenemo: Sept. 10, 1945 – June 30, 2018

QUENEMO, Kan. – Milton Fredrick Brown Jr., 72, passed away on Saturday, June 30, 2018, at his home in Quenemo, Kan. He was born on Sept. 10, 1945, in Kansas City, Kan., the son of Milton and Aletha Anderson Brown Sr.

Milton had lived in Quenemo for the last 22 years and had lived in Kansas City before that. He served in the United States Army and had worked as an electrician for St. Luke’s Hospital.

Heather Dianne Bartlett, 48, Emporia: Dec. 2, 1969 – June 12, 2018

EMPORIA, Kan. – Heather Dianne Bartlett, 48, passed away on June 12, 2018, at her home in Emporia, Kan. She was born on Dec. 2, 1969 in Topeka, Kan., the daughter of Marvin and Linda Meyer Bartlett.

Heather graduated from Marais des Cygnes Valley High School, Melvern, Kan., in 1988. She then attended Emporia State University, where she received her Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing. She had worked in several hospitals in Kansas, Oklahoma and Missouri. She played guitar and would go to area nursing homes to play for the residents. She was a fisherwoman and enjoyed fishing at the area lakes.

A Cowboy’s Faith: Hurting tummy serious concern

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“A bellyache can really be painful making it such nothing can be done but groan.”

Maybe kick the stall until somebody comes to see what in the world is going on.

It was Monday morning after two days at horseshows away from the ranch, and now back home Maggie started kicking. Beating her hind legs against the steel stall, loud banging was heard inside the kitchen 100 yards from the barn.

Maggie was obviously hurting very badly, begging for some relieving help, making it known the best way she could.

Her neck was wet with sweat when turned out into the indoor arena where she immediately started rolling. There seemed some relief when Maggie stood back up with head hanging low, sad look in her eyes.

Checking on the buckskin mare just a few minutes later, she came right to the fence for pacification. Her stomach was still hurting for sure. Now, that is a serious situation dealt with in other horses through the decades. It can be different problems, maybe just stomachache or colic.

While they’re bad even sometimes with serious consequences, other problems like compaction and twisted intestine are generally worse. Treatment for these ailments is complex, frequently ineffective with higher mortality.

Worry and concern for the very sick still beautiful show horse were rapidly increasing.

Walking a horse is generally advised to help indigestion, relieving pressure and discomfort. Maggie went both Number 1 and Number 2, which seemed positive signs. But there was still lots of heartburn soreness as Maggie aggressively bit at her own sides. She started kicking into the air and wouldn’t lead despite coaxed tugging.

Corps issues public health warning for Melvern Lake’s Outlet Park campground, swim beach

The U.S Army Corps of Engineers announced Friday the existence of a blue-green algae bloom at the Outlet Park campground (River Pond) and swim beach downstream of Melvern Lake. Blue-green algae identification tests have confirmed the presence of the algae.

The most recent tests showed the presence of the toxin microcystin, but levels can increase or decrease on a daily basis. Hot and sunny weather conditions combined with high nutrient levels create ideal conditions for harmful algae bloom growth. Swimming is now prohibited at the Outlet Park swim beach, and all wading and contact with algae is highly discouraged.

Pet owners should be particularly mindful of the presence of blue-green algae. Dogs are highly susceptible to algae toxins and frequently ingest concentrated toxins from shoreline areas. Pets that swim in or drink water affected by a harmful algal bloom, or that eat dried algae along the shore may become seriously ill.

The present algae bloom is isolated to the Outlet Park River Pond and swim beach area below Melvern Lake. Boat ramps and lake activities are not affected. Marinas, lakeside businesses and park camping facilities are open for business. Drinking water and showers at parks are safe and not affected by algae blooms.

Kansas Department of Health and Environment will continue to monitor these public waters and will update the status as conditions warrant. For more information contact the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at Melvern Lake at 785-549-3318.

Operation Dry Water surveils for boaters under the influence

Heightened awareness and enforcement slated for June 29-July 1

TOPEKA, Kan. – Kansas Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism game wardens will be on the lookout for boaters under the influence during Operation Dry Water, June 29-July 1, 2018. Operation Dry Water is part of a national effort to reduce accidents and fatalities related to boating under the influence of drugs and alcohol and educate recreational boaters about the dangers of BUI. While Operation Dry Water is a year-round national campaign, a heightened awareness and enforcement effort takes place around July 4th, a holiday known for the potentially deadly combination of drinking and boating.

KDWPT game wardens are responsible for patrolling the waters of Kansas and conducting boat accident investigations, boat safety inspections, BUI checks, safety programs, education classes and other boating-related activities. During Operation Dry Water, officers will be looking for boaters whose blood alcohol content exceeds the state limit of 0.08. The weekend will include increased patrols, breathalyzer tests, life jacket checks and boater education.

Impaired boaters can expect to be arrested or face other serious penalties. In Kansas, the consequences for BUI include fines, jail and loss of boating privileges. During the 2017 Operation Dry Water in Kansas, game wardens issued 26 boating citations, 35 boating-related warnings and recorded two BUI offenses.

Safety stressed for Independence Day holiday and summer travel

In the midst of the summer travel season, the Kansas Turnpike Authority and Kansas Highway Patrol are partnering to remind motorists to travel safely during Independence Day, and throughout the rest of the summer.

Over the 2017 Independence Day Holiday weekend, statewide there were seven fatal crashes, which killed seven people. Additionally, 159 people were injured in the 547 total crashes from Friday, June 30 through Tuesday, July 4, 2017. None of the fatal crashes were alcohol-related.

“We can’t stress enough how important it is to be prepared for any summer travel,” said Steve Hewitt, KTA CEO. “We hope you don’t need that emergency kit in your vehicle, but you’ll be glad that you have it if you do.”

From July 3 through July 4, KHP personnel will be working in support of the Combined Accident Reduction Effort (CARE) enforcement, along with personnel from other states. CARE focuses on occupant protection, impaired driving laws, and other crash-causing traffic violations. CARE’s goal is increased safety and ease of travel on our nation’s roadways.

The agencies wish all of those traveling during the upcoming holiday, safe travels. Anyone in need of help on a Kansas highway can call KHP for assistance at *47 (*HP) or *KTA (*582) for the Kansas Turnpike.

As you enjoy your summer travels and celebrate Independence Day, the agencies offer some tips:

Contact us: Osage County News | P.O. Box 62, Lyndon, KS 66451 | [email protected] | 785-828-4994 | Powered by Osage County, Kansas