www.wvgazettemail.com http://www.wvgazettemail.com Gazette archive feed en-us Copyright 2017, Charleston Newspapers, Charleston, WV Newspapers Funerals for: May 26, 2017 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/OBIT01/305269980 OBIT01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/OBIT01/305269980 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 Ball, Kitonya 6 p.m., Church of God in Christ, Charleston.

Boggess, Thelma L. 1 p.m., Cunningham

Canterbury, Sarah Elizabeth 2 p.m., Hafer Funeral Home, Elkview.

Davis, George 10 a.m., The Basilica of the Co

DeLay, Mary 2 p.m., Wallace and Wallace Funeral Home, Ansted.

Dyer, Linda 1 p.m., Pryor Funeral Home, East Bank.

Green, Ronsford L. 1 p.m., Cathedral of Prayer Southern Baptist Church, Charleston.

Jarrett, Hali 1 p.m., Loy

Martin, Frances 4 p.m., Bartlett

McNeeley, Eileen 1 p.m., Ravenswood Cemetery, Ravenswood.

McNeely, Katherine Noon, Koontz Funeral Home, Hamlin.

Metz, Jean 2 p.m., West Virginia Memorial Gardens, Calvin.

Parrill, Thomas, Jr. Noon, Taylor

Posey, Annabelle 2 p.m., Roush Funeral Home, Ravenswood.

Rader, Isaac 2 p.m., Penile United Methodist Church, Hominy Falls.

Snodgrass, Joseph 1 p.m., Leonard Johnson Funeral Home, Marmet.

Williamson, John Henry 11 a.m., t. Paul United Methodist Church, South Charleston.

Mary DeLay http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/OBIT/305269987 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/OBIT/305269987 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 Mary Louise DeLay, 88, of Victor, passed away Tuesday, May 23, 2017. Service will be held at Wallace and Wallace Funeral Home in Ansted, W.Va. Visitation will be held from noon to 2 p.m. on Friday, May 26, followed by the funeral service at 2 p.m.

Tommy C. Dingess http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/OBIT/305269984 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/OBIT/305269984 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 Tommy C. Dingess, 85, of St. Albans, suffered a number of years with fibrosis of the lungs. He left his temporary home Saturday, May 20, 2017, to arrive in heaven to be with his Savior.

Born February 6, 1932, Tommy was the son of John Ed and Gladys Dingess of Logan. He was in the Navy from 1951-1955 which was followed by enrollment at Beckley College, Beckley.

Tommy was a retired truck driver with 42 years of service. His employment consisted of Chemical Leaman in Nitro, Smith Transfer in Belle and Yellow Freight in Columbus, Ohio. He attended Faith Freewill Baptist Church. He wholeheartedly loved his church family and the Lord. He sang gospel music every day. Tommy also loved WVU football.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by five brothers and their spouses, Moscow and Ruby of Beckley, Naaman and Jean of Los Alamitos, Calif., Leslie and Margie of Tacoma, Wash., Henry and Carol of Massillon, Ohio, and Joe and Fonda of Advance, N.C. He was also preceded in death by his daughter, Tonui Deborah Dingess.

Tommy is survived by his wife of 56 years, Lois V. Dingess; four children including their spouses, Terri (Jeff) Baloga of Indian Trail, NC, Tommy Dingess Jr. of St. Albans, Timothy (Leann) Dingess of Eleanor and Tena (Tim) Green of Kings Mountain, NC; nine grandchildren; one great-grandson and a great-granddaughter on the way.

A celebration of Tommy's life will be 7 p.m., Saturday, May 27, at Casdorph & Curry Funeral Home, 110 B Street, St. Albans, with Tom Burnside and Tom Rowland leading the service. Military Rites will be conducted by St. Albans VFW Post 6418 and American Legion Post 73 after the service. There will be a gathering of family and friends from 5 p.m. until time of service Saturday at the funeral home.

The family would like to give a special thank you to Hubbard Hospice House West, especially to his nurse, April.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.casdorphandcurry.com.

Robert Hackney http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/OBIT/305269988 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/OBIT/305269988 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 Robert Jay Hackney, 36, of St. Albans, passed away Sunday, May 21, 2017, at Charleston, of natural causes. Arrangements are pending completion and will be announced later. Blue Ridge Funeral Home of Beckley is serving the Hackney family.

William Hammonds http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/OBIT/305269998 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/OBIT/305269998 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 William Walter "Bill" Hammonds, 97, of Richwood, went home to be with the Lord on Friday, May 19, 2017, at the Webster Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Webster.

He was born on October 14, 1919, in Richwood, to the late William W. and Nancy Mullins Hammonds. He was raised in Camden-on-Gauley, Webster Springs, and several logging camps with his family. He later owned a team of horses, which he worked at the logging camp. He was a history buff. Several authors came to him for information to write their books. He built the coal tipple in Richwood and ran it until it closed.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Anna Sue; daughter, Mildred Stinnett; granddaughter, Kim Gardner; seven sisters and three brothers.

Survivors include two children, Betty Gardner of Richwood, William "Sonny" Hammonds and wife Linda of Richwood; two grandchildren, Lindsay and husband Eric Smith of Barboursville, Bill Gardner and wife Blair of Huntington; three great-grandchildren, Alex and Bryson Smith, Amber Gardner.

Graveside service was Wednesday, May 24, at West Virginia Memorial Gardens, Calvin, with Rev. Larry Russell officiating. Interment followed at West Virginia Memorial Gardens. Visitation was Tuesday evening, May 23, at Simons-Coleman Funeral Home, Richwood. The family has requested no flowers.

All arrangements were made by Simons-Coleman Funeral Home, Inc., Richwood, W.Va.

WV men admit false claims in staged vehicle crashes http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0118/170529688 GZ0118 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0118/170529688 Fri, 26 May 2017 08:53:48 -0400 The Associated Press By The Associated Press CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (AP) - Federal authorities say two West Virginia men have admitted their roles in filing false insurance claims for motor vehicle accidents.

They were among eight people indicted in March over staged accidents from 2012 to 2014 in three counties.

According to prosecutors, 55-year-old Dallas Lewis, of Clarksburg, pleaded guilty to mail fraud conspiracy and 34-year-old Charles Bonner, of Morgantown, pleaded guilty to mail fraud.

Authorities say Bonner took part in a staged accident in January 2012 in Harrison County, faking injuries and filing a false insurance claim that paid approximately $101,500 to him and others.

He also admitted a role in getting an insurance settlement check sent to someone else for $46,500.

The indictment alleged that Lewis coordinated the crashes and recruited the others.

Republican wins MT election one night after being charged with assault on reporter http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0113/170529689 GZ0113 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0113/170529689 Fri, 26 May 2017 08:33:56 -0400 By David Weigel and Elise Viebeck The Washington Post By By David Weigel and Elise Viebeck The Washington Post BOZEMAN, Mont. - Republican businessman Greg Gianforte won Montana's sole House district in a special election Thursday, keeping a seat in Republican hands despite facing assault charges for allegedly attacking a reporter who'd asked him about the GOP's health-care bill.

In his victory speech, Gianforte admitted to the attack and apologized for it.

"I shouldn't have treated that reporter that way," he told supporters at his rally here.

The victory, called by the Associated Press, offered some relief for Republicans, who have struggled to sell their Obamacare overhaul, the American Health Care Act. But it was a closer call than the party had expected when it tapped the multimillionaire to run in a state President Donald Trump carried by 20 points - and when Democrats nominated folk singer Rob Quist instead of an experienced politician. With 83 percent of the vote counted, Gianforte led Quist 51 percent to 44 percent, according to preliminary returns.

Some in the crowd laughed at the mention of the incident. "I made a mistake," said Gianforte.

"Not in our minds!" yelled a supporter.

Democrats, who called on Gianforte to quit the race after the assault charge, believed that late votes broke Quist's way, and that the first-time candidate put the race in play by attacking the AHCA. Forcing Republicans to spend seven figures defending a typically safe seat, they argued, was worth it.

"We said at the outset that this would be a very difficult election on very red turf," said David Nir, the political director of Daily Kos, which endorsed Quist and crowdfunded donations for him. "The playing field next month in Georgia and next year in the midterms is much more favorable. Republicans might be breathing a sigh of relief that their morally reprehensible candidate won on Thursday night, but they should still be very worried about 2018."

Quist conceded defeat shortly after 11 pm local time. "Your voices were definitely heard in this election," he told supporters at his election party in Missoula. "I know we came up short but the energy and the grassroots movement in this state goes on."

In-person voting began across the state just hours after Gianforte allegedly "body-slammed" Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs, who was trying to ask him a question about the House Republican health-care plan. Gianforte has been charged with misdemeanor assault.

"I'm glad I waited to vote until today," Wolf Redboy, 43, a software marketer and musician from Missoula, who backed Quist, said Thursday. It was the first election he'd voted in since 2012. "I couldn't believe what I was hearing in that tape. There are lots of words that come to mind for people who want to treat reporters that way."

The scuffle was caught on tape by the reporter and witnessed by a Fox News reporting team. Gallatin County police announced the charges late Wednesday after the Guardian published the recording.

On Thursday, as three major newspapers pulled their endorsements of the technology entrepreneur and some early voters sought in vain to change their ballots, GOP leaders urged Gianforte to apologize in an attempt to control the damage.

"There is no time where a physical altercation should occur," House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., said at his weekly news conference on Capitol Hill. "It should not have happened. Should the gentleman apologize? Yeah, I think he should apologize."

Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., one of Gianforte's closest allies in Montana politics and a former co-worker at his Bozeman company, called his actions "unacceptable" and agreed that he should apologize. Quist, meanwhile, told reporters Thursday that the scuffle was a "matter for law enforcement" and declined to comment further.

Wednesday's incident took place after nearly four weeks of voting in a special election to replace Republican Ryan Zinke, who became Trump's interior secretary in March. By Thursday, more than 200,000 of 700,000 eligible voters had cast early absentee ballots.

In interviews at Quist's final rally, at a Missoula microbrewery, voters were skeptical that the attack could change the race. Gianforte entered the contest with high negative ratings and an image as a hard-charging bully who had joked about outnumbering a reporter at a town hall meeting and sued to keep people from fishing on public land near his home.

"Greg thinks he's Donald Trump," said Brent Morrow, 60. "He thinks he could shoot a guy on Fifth Avenue and get away with it."

Gianforte and the allied super PACs had deflected attention from his low approval numbers with ads attacking Quist over unpaid taxes and gaffes about gun rights and military spending. To the extent the assault charge hurt - a GOP-aligned poll found 93 percent of voters aware of it - Republicans thought it denied them another day of attention on Quist.

For 24 hours, the assault charge was the biggest political story in Montana. The Billings Gazette, which serves Montana's largest city, told readers that it had made a "poor choice" by ignoring "questionable interactions" the candidate has had with reporters in the past. Two other major newspapers also pulled their Gianforte endorsements, with the Missoulian suggesting that the Republican should bow out of public life.

As word spread of the alleged assault in Bozeman, some supporters who had been knocking on doors for Quist began playing voters the audio clip. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which has invested more than $500,000 in the race, called for Gianforte to quit the race and released a last-minute radio ad featuring Jacobs's audio of the incident.

In the recording, Jacobs could be heard asking Gianforte to respond to the newly released Congressional Budget Office score of House Republicans' AHCA, a bill Gianforte had said he was glad to see the House approve.

After Gianforte told Jacobs to direct the question to his spokesman, there was the sound of an altercation, and a screaming candidate.

"I'm sick and tired of you guys!" Gianforte said. "The last guy that came in here did the same thing. Get the hell out of here! Get the hell out of here! The last guy did the same thing. Are you with the Guardian?"

Quist surprised both parties by running - and by securing the Democratic nomination. A supporter of Bernie Sanders's 2016 presidential bid, he told activists he backed Canadian-style single-payer health care, and he waxed to local reporters about whether taxes should be raised on the rich, whether military spending should be slashed and whether assault weapon owners should register their guns.

In the first months of the race, Quist raised just $900,000 and appeared to be written off by Washington Democrats. Republicans attempted to define the candidate before he could go on the air, with the opposition research group America Rising paying a tracker to follow Quist, and the Congressional Leadership Fund super PAC hiring a researcher to dig up damaging stories about the musician-turned-politician's tax problems. More than $5 million was spent by outside groups against Quist; Democrats responded with less than $1 million in positive spots.

"We knew that because Rob Quist was an unknown quantity with voters, we had the ability to define him negatively out of the gates," said America Rising chief executive Colin Reed.

But after the March failure of the first version of the AHCA, Quist's fundraising surged, adding up to more than $5 million by the final pre-election report - outmatching Gianforte, whom Republicans had hoped would self-fund his campaign.

The AHCA, the Republican replacement for the Affordable Care Act, had become the dominant issue in the campaign. In the closing days of the race, Quist focused his events and TV ads on his opposition to the Republican bill and brought in Sanders (I-Vt.) to help promote his position on U.S. health care: universal coverage.

The Republican struggled to talk about the AHCA. In public, he said that he would wait to weigh in on the legislation until the CBO score was released and assured him that protections for people with preexisting medical conditions wouldn't be scrapped. On a call with donors that was leaked to newspapers including The Washington Post, the Republican said he was "thankful" for the House's vote that moved the bill forward.

At campaign stops and on TV, the soft-spoken Quist either rebutted Republican attack ads or attacked the GOP's health-care bill, hitting Gianforte especially hard on the donor call remarks.

"Greg Gianforte says he's thankful for the new health-care bill, the one that eliminates protections for preexisting conditions and raises premiums on every Montanan who has one, because he gets a big tax break at our expense," Quist said in his closing spot.

Until Wednesday, Democrats worried that a loss would bolster Republican confidence to move ahead with the health care bill. But Gianforte's triumph over the assault charges gave the winners another reason to cheer - a victory over what the president calls "fake news."

At Gianforte's party in Bozeman, Rehberg - among other revelers - spread a shaky rumor that the Fox News journalists who spoke to police were "changing their story."

In Missoula, where Quist rallied with his voters, Democrats looked for the bright side. Matt McKenna, an adviser to the campaign and a longtime Montana politics insider, noted the ugly tenor of the race, starting with anti-Quist ads the first day of the campaign.

"This is the first day of the end of Greg Gianforte's political career," said McKenna. "It may seem like he got away with this because so many people already voted, but they will deny him the prize he really wants which is the governor's office. He could go to jail. He still has to be arraigned."

Putnam commission awards Valley Park community center contract http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0108/170529690 GZ0108 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0108/170529690 Fri, 26 May 2017 01:32:24 -0400 Carlee Lammers By Carlee Lammers Winfield - A new community center at Valley Park is set to be mostly completed by February 2018, if all goes as planned.

Members of the Putnam County Commission voted unanimously Thursday to award a construction contract for the community center to Bluefield-based Swope Construction.

The commission accepted Swope Construction's bid of $6,550,000 for the project - the lowest bid submitted to the county, according to County Manager Jeremy Young.

Barring any issues with weather or delays with the "ground pad" currently being built where the center will stand, Swope Construction estimates it can have the project "substantially completed" by Feb. 1, 2018.

Officials estimated the building could be turned over to the county for use beginning late March or early April 2018.

Parks director Jarrod Dean told the commissioners Thursday that he already has received requests from school groups to hold prom events in the center for May 2018.

Construction is set to begin as soon as the pad is complete, commissioners said, which could be within the next few weeks.

The new community center is part of a multi-million dollar improvement project for the park in Hurricane. In addition to the community center, the Valley Park project includes new ADA-accessible playgrounds, baseball and soccer fields and multiple other park improvements. Improvements also will be made to Valley Park's wave pool, including the construction of cabanas and a snack bar.

Construction for the entire park project officially broke ground in April, according to a previous Gazette-Mail report.

The commission also approved a supplemental resolution Thursday regarding the bonds it issued earlier this month to finance the Valley Park project.

Earlier this month, the commission issued up to $10 million in bonds for the Greater Teays Valley TIF District.

The commission voted Thursday to amend the previous resolution and break the bonds into two series.

"We're breaking into the two series of bonds instead of just one, which we originally planned," said commission President Steve Andes. "It's going to save us up to $400,000 in bonds, which can go toward the project."

The project will be primarily financed through the TIF funds. The tax-increment financing district was created in 2004, and stretches along Interstate 64 between the Teays Valley and Hurricane exits.

Commissioners also voted Thursday to pay the city of Winfield $4,864 to go toward new playground equipment for its city park.

The next Putnam County Commission meeting will be held at 9 a.m. on June 13.

Reach Carlee Lammers at Carlee.Lammers@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-1230 or follow @CarleeLammers on Twitter.

Trump to NATO: Pay your 2% of GDP http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0113/170529691 GZ0113 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0113/170529691 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:44:55 -0400 By Julie Pace and Jonathan Lemire The Associated Press By By Julie Pace and Jonathan Lemire The Associated Press BRUSSELS - Surrounded by stone-faced allies, President Donald Trump rebuked fellow NATO members Thursday for failing to meet the military alliance's financial benchmarks, asserting that leaves it weaker and shortchanges "the people and taxpayers of the United States."

Trump, who has often complained back home about other nations' NATO support, lectured the other leaders in person this time, declaring, "Many of these nations owe massive amounts of money from past years."

The president's assertion immediately put NATO under new strain and did nothing to quiet questions about his complicated relationship with an alliance he has previously panned as "obsolete." Notably, he also did not offer an explicit public endorsement of NATO's "all for one, one for all" collective-defense principle, although White House officials said his mere presence at the meeting signaled his commitment.

Fellow NATO leaders occasionally exchanged awkward looks with each other during the president's lecture, which occurred at an event commemorating the fall of the Berlin Wall and the Sept. 11, 2001, al-Qaida terrorist attack on the United States. When Trump tried to lighten the mood with a joke about NATO's gleaming new home base - "I never asked once what the new NATO Headquarters cost" -there was no laughter from his counterparts.

NATO officials had expected Trump to raise the payments issue during Thursday's meeting, even preparing Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg for the prospect that the president could try to pull off a stunt like handing out invoices. But one European official said NATO members were still taken aback by the aggressive tone of his speech.

As a presidential candidate, Trump railed against NATO's financial burden-sharing, suggesting the United States might only come to the defense of countries that meet the alliance's guidelines - for committing 2 percent of their gross domestic product to military spending. A White House official said the president wanted to deliver the same direct message in front of NATO allies.

Trump's public scolding was all the more remarkable, given that he has actually backed away from some of his most provocative comments on foreign policy issues since taking office. He's retracted his vow to label China a currency manipulator and has lavished praise on Chinese President Xi Jinping. During a visit to Saudi Arabia this week, he called Islam one of the world's great religions, after declaring during the campaign that "Islam hates us."

But few issues appear to have as much staying power with Trump as the uneven financial contributions of NATO members. Last year, only five of the 28 countries met the 2 percent goal: the United States, Greece, Britain, Estonia and Poland.

During a private dinner Thursday night, the 28 members, plus soon-to-join Montenegro, renewed an old pledge to move toward the 2 percent by 2024 - a move the White House touted as a sign of Trump's influence.

Some of the allies - particularly Eastern European nations deeply worried about Russian aggression - were hopeful that Trump would state a firm commitment to NATO's Article 5 mutual-defense agreement, which underpins the entire alliance. Instead, he highlighted NATO's decision to invoke the article, for the only time, after 9/11 and said the United States would "never forsake the friends that stood by our side."

The White House insisted that Trump did not intend to leave wiggle room on his commitment to coming to the defense of NATO members.

Stoltenberg said later that Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and other U.S. officials have stated clearly their assurances.

"It's not possible to be committed to NATO without being committed to Article 5," he said.

Trump scored a hoped-for success as NATO joined the 68-nation international coalition fighting the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant. An anti-terror coordinator also might be named. But most changes will be cosmetic, as NATO as an alliance has no intention of going to war against ISIL.

Finishing off a long day, Trump arrived late Thursday in Sicily for meetings today with leaders from the Group of 7 wealthy nations. The summit marks Trump's final stop on a maiden international trip that began in Saudi Arabia and Israel, where the president was warmly embraced by the countries' leaders.

His reception has been less enthusiastic in Europe, given his negative campaign comments not only about NATO, but also the European Union. His arrival also was shadowed by new criticism from British Prime Minister Theresa May, who complained about leaks of intelligence to the American news media about this week's deadly bombing at a concert in Manchester, England.

May said she planned to "make clear to President Trump that intelligence that is shared between our law enforcement agencies must remain secure." The two were seen talking during an event marking the opening of the new NATO Headquarters building.

In another development, the FBI is investigating meetings that Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, had in December with Russian officials, The Washington Post and NBC News reported Thursday.

Kushner, a key White House adviser, had meetings late last year with Russia's ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak, and Russian banker Sergey Gorkov.

The Post story cited anonymous "people familiar with the investigation," who said the FBI investigation does not mean that Kushner is suspected of a crime.

British officials are particularly angry that photos detailing evidence about the bomb used in the Manchester attack were published. In a written statement, Trump called the leaks "deeply troubling" and said he had asked the Justice Department and other agencies to review the matter.

Trump had lunch with newly elected French President Emmanuel Macron, who has been critical of the Republican president. As the news media watched, the two men exchanged a very firm handshake during their meeting.

Artist, daughter reusing materials to construct Tyler Mountain home http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ05/170529696 GZ05 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ05/170529696 Fri, 26 May 2017 08:35:00 -0400 Anna Taylor By Anna Taylor Eight years in the making, a single-story 1,250-square-foot home at the top of what's known as Tyler Mountain is artist David Riffle's latest, and proudest, project.

And it's still not finished.

The house not only is his future home, but an R & R spot for both him and his 17-year-old daughter, Nora, who has helped him with it from the start.

"Not too many people have been up here," David said. "Just our closest friends."

The house isn't your typical brick and concrete home. The two have used mostly recycled boards and materials, wood and stone from the property and other items they found or collected. Now 69 years of age, David is an ex-Marine and mixed media artist who does handyman and commissioned jobs. He once built a cabin at Harvey's Creek, but aside from that, he's a self-taught carpenter who relies on books from the library as references.

"It's just been us doing it and that's why it has taken so long," David said. "But it's pay as you go and do it as you go."

The Tyler Mountain property lies between Cross Lanes and Charleston and provides him with all the privacy he wants. Plus, there's endless natural elements like ponds, springs, flowers, trees and wildlife - as evidenced by two black snake skins he found at the home.

Even accessing the place is a challenge: there's a steep, curvy, self-made gravel road up the mountain that isn't clear of ruts, dips or rough terrain. Like the house, it's a work in progress.

"We had to start everything from scratch because of the road," Nora said. "It was like a jungle. We couldn't even hardly walk up the road. It was so bad. I remember I was really young and he started on the house and would take me up there and it was hardly a clearing. We started the foundation and clearing stuff. It's been a process."

During the earlier building process, David and Nora had a few extra work hands and let anyone who helped out become part of the home.

"Under all of these walls, in the studs, we had people write their name and the date to mark the occasion," Nora said.

The front of the home features large vertical windows likely meant for doors and entry ways.

"We didn't know what we were going to do for windows and somehow we got really lucky," Nora said. "We met a contractor who was working in South Hills and taking all of the windows out of the house and re-doing it. They were going to throw away all of these windows and they're really nice Pella windows. We got them all, put them in and filled in around them."

The windows fit the width they needed, but they used pieces of stained glass to fill the space above. David said he didn't purchase any of the glass, windows or doors in the home.

He estimates he has spent $16,000-$18,000 for the home so far.

"I bought the drywall and paid for the equipment for the road but whenever possible, I recycled stuff and took stuff from the property," he said.

What remains is plumbing, appliances, final touches, cleanup and moving in. He still anticipates another year to pass before calling it done.

Since there are no appliances in the kitchen yet, father and daughter have been known to cook veggie dogs and s'mores over the wood stove in the living room when they're up there.

Handmade flower beds line the front windows inside the home straight from the ground, taking advantage of the natural sunlight that shines in. The two have been testing their green thumbs by growing lettuce for salads.

"It's really good," David said.

The flooring throughout the whole house is made of varieties of sliced cherry or locust wood pieces surrounded with pea gravel. He will seal the floor using a polymer medium to make it one surface.

Wood from the trim came from a lady in Buffalo, David said. There was an outhouse on her farm property near the barn that she wanted to tear down. David went to the property and tore it down, taking the wood apart to use in his house.

Nora and David created loft areas in their individual bedrooms for additional space. Nora plans to sleep in hers. The bedrooms are located at opposite sides of the back end of the home.

Adjacent to her bedroom is the only bathroom in the house. The two took glass bottles of varying colors and sizes and collaged them between a concrete and fiber glass mixture for the bathroom window. David mixed fiber glass in the concrete and Nora laid out the design. On the outside wall, the corked bottle necks show through.

"One of the things that I wanted to do with this house was to just try new things," David said. "Just like the glass block windows. I just wanted to experiment."

One of the challenges was getting power in the house. April 6 marked the first day with power.

The two celebrated for a moment inside the house last month when Nora got to see working lights in the home for the first time.

Usually a painter in his spare time, David set his art aside to build the home and give his daughter a unique experience she won't soon forget.

"I feel so lucky because I feel that no other kids around me would know half of the stuff that I know about it," Nora said. "It's been bonding time too. I want to be some kind of designer when I grow up and it's neat because I can see stuff and how I would like it and then we talk about it and can make it that way, so it brings out some creativity as well."

"I figure, a long time from now when you buy a house or you're hiring someone to help you out, at least you'll know how the house goes together," David said to Nora.

He usually spends some amount of time each day at the home. Nora visits him every other weekend and continues to help out.

"It's been fun," David said. "I don't know what I'll do when we get it finished. But, I don't know if it'll ever be finished."

Reach Anna Taylor at anna.taylor@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-4881 or follow @byannataylor on Twitter.

Star Parker: Liberal fight against freedom turns violent (Daily Mail) http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/DM0405/170529709 DM0405 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/DM0405/170529709 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400

Intolerance, at times exploding into violence, is spreading throughout our society. And it's coming from the political left.

It's happening on college campuses. Most recently, students walked out on Vice President Mike Pence's commencement address at Notre Dame University.

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos was interrupted by boos and jeers at her commencement address at historically black Bethune-Cookman University.

Conservative scholar Charles Murray was met with violent protests and physically assaulted at Middlebury College. Another conservative scholar, Heather MacDonald, was violently shut down in a presentation she was giving at Claremont McKenna College. These are just a couple examples.

Now it's spreading off college campuses with reports of violence and threats toward Republican members of congress, and their families, as they hold town halls in their districts.

A column in The Hill newspaper bears the headline, "Republicans fearing for their safety as anger, threats mount."

What's happening?

A recent commentary in Forbes Magazine from a London School of Business professor calls this "the post-truth world."

He describes a prevailing feeling of helplessness as individuals inhabit a world in which knowledge is, in general, exploding, but each individual knows, relatively, less and less. And he points to a world in which business and politics are becoming increasingly interdependent.

New York University psychologist Jonathan Haidt attributes what's happening to a culture in which young people are not forced to deal with opposing viewpoints. This, says Haidt, is amplified by social media, which serves to reinforce existing biases.

But all this doesn't explain why the intolerance and violence is coming mainly from the political left.

A new survey from the Pew Research Center sheds light on this.

Sixty-six percent of Republicans compared to 29 percent of Democrats say that a person is rich "because they worked harder than most people" rather than because of having personal advantages in life. This 37 percent difference in attitudes of Republicans and Democrats about why some people are rich is 12 points larger today than where it stood just three years ago in 2014.

Seventy-one percent of Democrats compared to 32 percent of Republicans say someone is poor because of "circumstances beyond a person's control," rather than because of "lack of effort." This 37 percent difference between Republicans and Democrats in attitudes regarding why someone is poor is 19 points larger than where it stood in 2014.

The nation is becoming increasingly polarized on the very fundamental question regarding the extent to which individuals have control over their own life.

Across the nation's whole population, 53 percent feel poverty is the result of circumstances beyond an individual's control compared to 34 percent who see poverty as the result of lack of effort.

What is the meaning of freedom in a country where more than half its citizens feel fate rather than choice governs their life?

Not surprisingly, for the first time in eight years, according to Pew, more Americans (48 percent) say they want bigger government than say they want smaller government (45 percent).

Conservatives are exposed to the same cultural and technological forces as liberals. But it's not what comes from outside that determines human behavior. It's what comes from inside - the individual's attitudes and approach to life.

Liberal mentality, increasingly dominated by moral relativism, produces a culture of victimhood. The victim sees life exclusively in political terms, seeing political power and government as the means to a better life, rather than freedom and personal responsibility.

With Republicans now in power, trying to restore economic vitality and fiscal balance by limiting government and expanding personal freedom, the left sees this as a threat, not an opportunity.

We all should be deeply troubled that, in the "land of the free and the home of the brave," some are turning to violence to battle the prospect of becoming freer.

Star Parker is an author and president of CURE, Center for Urban Renewal and Education. Contact her at www.urbancure.org.

Daily Mail cartoon: May 26, 2017 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/DM0408/170529710 DM0408 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/DM0408/170529710 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400

Readers' Vent: May 26, 2017 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0407/170529722 GZ0407 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0407/170529722 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 After all the great deals President Donald Trump was going to make, he sells $110 billion dollars worth of arms to Saudi Arabia. What happened to renegotiating NAFTA and all that other nonsense? He sells guns to Saudi Arabia. Be serious.

I think if they don't get the budget passed the Republicans should come up with a plan they should give Gov. Jim Justice 15 days to pay his taxes to help the state. If he don't pay it draw up the papers to impeach him.

Dollar Danny should have to pay for all the busted tires and bent rims caused by all these potholes. We pay taxes but he wastes money elsewhere.

Economics 101. Raising sales taxes make goods more expensive which makes people less likely to buy them. Local business will love that. I thought Republicans were pro-business. The income tax is the fairest tax and the one least likely to hurt businesses.

Tell me why Gov. Justice is spending all this money for flowers at the Capitol. This is our taxpayer money and it is ridiculous.

I cut my grass on Sunday because it is the only day I have available, and so far I have not seen the Lord in my backyard with a lawn mower either.

The Republicans love to hear "Lock her up" when they were talking about Hillary Clinton, so I am talking about President Trump. "Lock him up."

Hummingbirds are here. Do not feed them with red dyed nectar. It is dangerous for them. Use one cup of white sugar in one cup of boiling water and then cool.

It would be nice to see some positive articles in the Charleston Gazette-Mail about President Trump's trip. He is being very successful with it and I have not seen any positive stories.

The Legislature giveth and the Legislature can taketh away. A few years ago the Legislature allowed larger cities to have a 1 percent sales tax. If the Legislature increases sales tax perhaps it should take back a half or quarter point to ease the burden on consumers.

The only way to escape poverty in West Virginia is to escape West Virginia. Always has been always will be.

The family that will always vote for Tim Armstead. I hope you are the first in line leaving West Virginia when this becomes a ghost state because some can't lead. Religion in politics is ruining this state. Church and state it needs to be kept separate.

The Democrats would have us believe that everyone is flocking to them and donating. If that is so true why did they just have the worst April since 2009 in donations? Democrats better wake up. We have seen your hypocrisy and your leanings toward socialism and we are not buying into it.

Retail stores are closing everywhere, yet two shopping malls are being built in South Charleston largely with public funds. Are developers reaping the benefits of costly infrastructure improvements leaving city taxpayers holding the bag?

I find it appalling that many members of Congress are complaining about the AHCA and getting rid of Obamacare when they exempted themselves from being beholden to that debacle of an alleged healthcare scheme.

I agree with the person who said the Republicans treated President Obama 100 times worse. Mitch McConnell vowed to vote against any bill Obama tried to pass and that is what they did. Republicans absolutely did not try to work with him and blamed Obama for everything.

I really loved the story published this past Sunday about 103-year-old William Anderson Farley. I wish we could read more stories like that.

A venter mentioned inviting former President Obama and Bill and Hillary Clinton to enter the liar's contest at the Culture Center. Sorry but professionals are not allowed.

The phrase Rosie the Riveter is misleading, unfortunately. At least 80 percent of the women being honored were not riveters. All women who worked on the home front to support the troops needs to be interviewed and recognized. Thanks! Plain and Simple uses the phrase "Rosies" when possible, so that more women are heard and included.

Trials changed to a later day are indeed moved back. If the date were sooner, it would be moved up. The meaning of "move back" is "to postpone" not "go back in time."

When the president stops putting people down, people will stop putting him down.

Liberals, independents like me, and conservatives all respect the office of the president. What we deplore is the disrespect President Trump has demonstrated repeatedly for the office.

West Virginia Trump voters, are you happy now that 12 million Americans will lose food stamps if his budget passes?

Things to do today: Friday, May 26 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0112/170529726 GZ0112 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0112/170529726 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 POST-VANDALIA GATHERING JAM: 7 p.m. Free. Bluegrass Kitchen, 1600 Washington St., E. Call 304-346-2871.

NO REGRETS with BILL WYMER: 7 to 10 p.m. Cover $5. Elk River Community Center, 1047 Main St., Elkview. Call 304-965-3722.

KAY & POSEY: 7:30 p.m. Adults $5. Children 12 and under $3. Jerry Run Summer Theater, Route 20, Cleveland, Near Holly River State Park. Call 304-493-7574.

DEROBERTS AND THE HALF TRUTHS with THE M.F.B.: 6:30 p.m. Free. Live on the Levee, Haddad Riverfront Park, 600 Kanawha Blvd. E. Call 304-348-8000.

DANIELLE CONARD AND STEVE HIMES: 7:30 p.m. Free. Taylor Books, 226 Capitol St. Call 342-1464 or visit www.taylorbooks.com.

BALLROOM DANCING LESSONS: 7 to 8 p.m. 8 to 10 p.m. open dancing. Donations accepted. Ballroom, Social and Latin dancing. 2805 Kanawha Blvd E. Call 304-552-1456.

OPEN MIC: 6:30 p.m. Cover $5. Hosted by The Partners. West Side Jamboree, corner of Tennessee Avenue and Randolph Street. Call 304-419-1902.

JEWEL CITY JAMBOREE: 2 p.m. Weekend ticket $45. Single day ticket $25. Rev. Peyton's Big Damn Band, Blind Boy Paxton, Suitcase Junket, Horse Traders and more. Harris Riverfront Park. Call 561-846-2372.

VANDALIA GATHERING: Free. A celebration of traditional Appalachian music, arts, dance and culture. Capitol Complex. Call 304-558-0162.

"AFTER THE STORM": 7:30 p.m. Adults $9. Students $5. Japanese drama: After the death of his father, a private detective struggles to find child support money and reconnect with his son and ex-wife. Underground Cinema, 226 Capitol St. Call 304-342-1464.

Bulletin Board: May 26, 2017 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0120/170529727 GZ0120 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0120/170529727 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 The Greater Huntington and Recreation District and the Veterans Committee for Civic Improvement will sponsor a Memorial Program at 11 a.m. on Monday at the Veteran's Memorial Arch in Huntington.

The GFWC Woman's Club of Cross Lanes has rescheduled their Mary Fletcher Breast Cancer Awareness Walk for 2 to 4 p.m. June 11 at the Cross Lanes Elementary Track, 5525 Big Tyler Road. There is a $5 walk registration fee - survivors' registration fee is waived. Team Donations are encouraged. All proceeds will benefit the CAMC Breast Center. Rain date is June 25. Call 304-755-3450 or 304-545-0931 for questions.

Sissonville High School Class of 1960 will have a reunion at 2 p.m. on July 22 at Top Spot Restaurant in Sissonville. Attendees are responsible for their own dinner. To reserve a spot, call to Karen Pritt at 304-984-1846, Donna Sue Tate at 304-984-0779, Jean Ann Thomas at 304-532-3533, or Dickie Haynes at 304-984-9229, by July 8.

Items for Bulletin Board may be submitted by mail to the Charleston Gazette-Mail, 1001 Virginia St. E., Charleston, WV 25301; faxed to 304-348-1233; or emailed to gazette@wvgazettemail.com. Notices will be run one time free. Please include a contact person's name and a daytime phone number.

Unwitting comments from dad cause childless daughter pain http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ05/170529730 GZ05 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ05/170529730 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 Dear Abby: I am a 40-year-old childless single woman. I spent several years doing various day care jobs and have great love for children, but due to female health issues, I am unable to have my own. I have a great job and home, but cannot afford fertility treatments or adoption, both of which are expensive.

My fertility issues have caused me heartbreak and many tears. My father often comments about how disappointed he is that he has no grandchildren. Recently, he made an offhand remark that I was "selfish" for not having had any. It upset me so much I cried for days. Dad is a good man, and I know he didn't mean to be hurtful.

How do I approach him about how his comment affected me without hurting him? I don't know how much detail to give him about my fertility issues. Should I just let it be and ignore him when he complains about not having grandkids? - Childless in Idaho

Dear Childless: Do not ignore this! Tell your father that you are UNABLE to conceive because of a medical problem and exactly how his comment made you feel. You should also tell him you are unable to afford fertility treatments or adoption because of the cost involved, and not to raise the subject again because it is hurtful and beyond your ability to remedy. Perhaps you could channel your motherly instincts by exploring foster care and other ways you can help children in need.

Dear Abby: My husband left me for another woman four months ago. We had been married for 33 years, and my world has been ripped apart.

Now he says he wants to try to reconcile, and it has me feeling extremely confused. While I still love him, I know our relationship will never be the same as before. Will I look like a fool to everyone if I let him come home? - Heartbroken in Pennsylvania

Dear Heartbroken: How you look to "everyone" is far less important than how you feel. You are correct that if you reconcile, your relationship will never be the same. But has it occurred to you that it might be better?

Husbands stray for all kinds of reasons. Before you make any final decisions about taking him back, insist on counseling so you can understand exactly what they were. That's how broken marriages are repaired.

Dear Abby: I had friendships with both of my second cousins, "Tom" and "Jane," a brother and sister in their 60s. They have long been estranged from each other. Tom was estranged from his parents as well. Jane was their parents' caregiver.

Jane called me to say their father was near death and thought I would want to know. Then she said, "I'm not telling Tom, and I'm asking you to do the same." I told her it was an awkward request because I am friendly with him, too.

Well, I chose to tell him. Tom called his mother and it went well, after years of no communication. Jane has now cut me out of her life. Was I wrong to tell her brother? - Mike in Mexico

Dear Mike: Yes, I think it was wrong to have gone against the wishes of the daughter who had assumed the responsibility of caring for her aged parents. It's fortunate that the conversation went well, because it might not have.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

Letter: Expand drug courts; don't kill them (Gazette) http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0406/170529733 GZ0406 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0406/170529733 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 Expand drug courts; don't kill them


I wish the public could have heard the stories and seen the smiles and outpouring of love bursting from the families of the six individuals who graduated from drug court earlier this month. Judge Jennifer Bailey, APA Reagan Whitmyer and the special program staff are to be commended for their wonderful work, which is saving lives and helping folks obtain work and hope for their futures.

If the West Virginia Legislature and Supreme Court could have witnessed the sincere expressions of joy and gratitude inside that courtroom, they would not be thinking of cutting funding for drug courts. We don't need longer sentences and more costly prisons; we need to expand our drug courts. Prosecutors and judges need to be more open to referring defendants, and defense attorneys need to keep advocating for their clients to participate.

One of the candidates was turned down for consideration at first, because he had been caught selling drugs. But once authorities agreed to interview him and saw his sincere resolve, they took a chance on him. In over one year's time, he has never failed a drug test, has had only one minor infraction and, despite heavy, negative peer pressure, has mentored juveniles and provided many hours of community service.

Heavy sentences have not slowed down the distribution or consumption of harmful, illegal drugs. Our ultimate purpose should be to get violators to gain control of their addictions and make an honest living. Drug court programs meet that purpose; long prison terms do not. I urge those who agree to contact their legislators and ask them to expand - not cut - funding for drug court programs. And I respectfully urge our prosecutors and judges to re-examine their views on the drug court program and give more defendants a chance to participate.

J. Timothy DiPiero


Linda Frame: (Wrong) CHOICE Act would hurt WV consumers (Gazette) http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0405/170529736 GZ0405 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0405/170529736 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 By Linda Frame By By Linda Frame

Congress could soon take up a dangerous piece of legislation that has the potential to cause immense harm to West Virginia working families and retirees, all in the name of lining the pockets of big banks and Wall Street billionaires.

The so-called Financial CHOICE Act would radically roll back the rules put in place after the 2008 financial crisis to keep big banks from crashing the economy again. And it would eviscerate the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau which, for years, has guarded consumers against deceptive and predatory financial products.

If anything like this legislation gets signed into law, financial institutions ranging from "too-big-to-fail" banks to mortgage lenders, payday lenders, credit card companies, and debt collectors will once again be free to write a lot of their own rules.

Most Americans, regardless of political party, think financial regulation should be stronger, not weaker. We remember the financial crisis, when roughly 9 million Americans lost their jobs, including over 9,000 West Virginians; the average middle-class household saw half its wealth evaporate in the space of a few years; and almost 10 million families lost their homes.

The Consumer Bureau has begun to bring basic rules of fair play to the banking and lending markets, while delivering nearly $12 billion in relief to more than 29 million Americans cheated by financial companies large and small. For example, thanks to the Consumer Bureau, Wells Fargo was forced to pay $100 million in penalties for opening accounts in the names of millions of customers who hadn't approved them.

Could the Wrong CHOICE Act strip West Virginians of these new protections as well as open our borders to payday lenders who have tried to get their foot in the door for years? Keeping these predatory lenders out of our state saves us $48 million each year in fees, and protects the 1 in 4 West Virginia households which has inadequate access to banks. It's no wonder that the industry wants in and that big banks and predatory lenders want to cripple the agency and all of the financial reforms put in place after the last crisis. And they are spending big money to get their way - $2.7 million per day in lobbying and political contributions over the past two years.

When Congress takes up this bill, it will tell us a great deal about which side our representatives are on. Wall Street, or their constituents. Our representatives in DC need to make the right choice and put hard-working West Virginians ahead of the big banks and their lobbyists.

Linda Frame is project manager for the West Virginia Center on Budget & Policy.

Gazette editorial: Making good on water failure http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0404/170529738 GZ0404 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0404/170529738 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400 A settlement pending before U.S. District Judge John Copenhaver offers real and practical payment to the majority of the 300,000 people who experienced the 2014 water crisis.

The settlement with West Virginia American Water Co. and Eastman Chemical Co. would provide $151 million and applies to people who got their tap water from West Virginia American on Jan. 9, 2014, the day the public figured out that the chemical MCHM was leaking into their Elk River drinking water from the former Freedom Industries tank farm.

The group includes homeowners and renters; businesses, nonprofit and government entities; and hourly wage-earners employed by those businesses. The proposed settlement includes:

n A payment for all members of the class-action lawsuit. With a simple claim form residential customers can get $525 for the first resident and $170 for each additional household member.

n Separate provisions for women who were pregnant at the time and for people who believe they suffered larger damages, such as replacing appliances or staying in hotels.

n Separate provisions and claim forms for all businesses, nonprofits and government offices affected, with additional money available to those forced to close.

n Separate provisions for people who suffered permanent injury or wrongful deaths.

n Hourly wages for people who can show what they could have earned if their employers had not been closed.

These provisions address serious concerns that in 2014 people weren't sure would ever be addressed - such as the loss of income to people whose employers closed and the extra expenses to households and businesses, especially for those whose budgets were tight to begin with.

For the majority of more than 100,000 affected households and 7,000 businesses, this is a good settlement.

If the judge approves it, formal notices will be sent to those concerned and deadlines will be set for filing claims. If approved, claim forms will be available online at www.wvwaterclaims.com or by calling 1-855-829-8121.

Dozens of attorneys from multiple firms worked on this case. They have asked the judge for nearly $43 million in fees plus $2.4 million in expenses. Is that too much? The attorneys make an argument for the complexity of the case and the time, personnel and expenses involved. The judge will have to rule on that question, as well.

The attorneys' three years of work is certainly worth something.

They have achieved a meaningful settlement, with the potential to truly restore lost wages and expenses of many people whose lives and livelihoods were so disrupted that winter. Claim forms appear to be simple enough for families to handle themselves. If requirements to prove certain circumstances are as straightforward and reasonable as proposed, this settlement could do right by a lot of people.

Gazette cartoon: May 26, 2017 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0408/170529741 GZ0408 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20170526/GZ0408/170529741 Fri, 26 May 2017 00:01:00 -0400