www.wvgazettemail.com http://www.wvgazettemail.com Gazette archive feed en-us Copyright 2016, Charleston Newspapers, Charleston, WV Newspapers Funerals for: December 08, 2016 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/OBIT01/312089970 OBIT01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/OBIT01/312089970 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 00:01:00 -0500 Badger, Diane 4 p.m., Chapman Funeral Home, Hurricane.


Bologna, Suzanne 7 p.m., Keller Funeral Home, Dunbar.


Cooper, Philip 11 a.m., Dodd & Reed Funeral Home, Webster Springs.


Davis Smith, Nancy


Hackney, Bobby Lou 1 p.m., Cunningham


Hinton, Thelma 11 a.m., Good Hope Cemetery, Reedy.


Jones, Clifford 1 p.m., Hafer Funeral Home, Elkview.


Lipscomb, Shirley 11 a.m., Fidler and Frame Funeral Home, Belle.


Litton, Harold 11 a.m., Thursday, Seaver Funeral Home, Princeton.


Martin, Jarrell 1 p.m., Keller Funeral Home, Dunbar.


Ramey, Mary 1 p.m., Harding Funerals & Cremations, Kanawha City.


Rexroad, Landon 1 p.m., Greene


Smallwood, Christine 11 a.m., White Funeral Home, Summersville.


Staats, Mary 5 p.m., Faith Baptist Church, Mason.


Tallhamer, Parker Sr. 11 a.m., Ellyson Mortuary, Inc., Glenville.


Thomas, James Jr. 1 p.m., Stevens & Grass Funeral Home, Malden.


Thornton, Ernestine 1 p.m., Seaver Funeral Home in Princeton.


Tygrett, Samuel 1 p.m., Tyree Funeral Home, Oak Hill.

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Jon Arnett http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/OBIT/312089991 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/OBIT/312089991 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 00:01:00 -0500 Jon Alan Arnett, 47, passed away suddenly at his home in Barbours- ville, on Sunday, December 4, 2016.

He was born Jon Alan Arnett at Thomas Memorial Hospital on April 7, 1969, the son of Alfred L. Arnett and Margaret A. Arnett. Jon attended and graduated from St. Albans High School in 1987.

Jon is survived by his mother, Margaret McKinney; and step-father, David Mckinney of St. Albans; his paternal father, Alfred Arnett; and step-mother, Mary Arnett of Lewisburg; his brother, Mark Arnett; sister-in-law, Laura Arnett; and niece, Alexis Arnett (14), of Stone Ridge, Va.; his uncle, Denny and his wife, Debbie Arnett of St. Albans; his step-brother, David McKinney, Jr., of Charleston; and step-brother, Dwayne McKinney of Flemingsburg, Ky.

Memorial service will be held at 6 p.m., Friday, December 9, Bartlett-Chapman Funeral Home, St. Albans with Bishop Clifton Dedrickson officiating.

Bartlett-Chapman Funeral Home, family owned and located at 409 Sixth Ave., St. Albans is honored to serve the Arnett family.

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Kevin Broyles http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/OBIT/312089971 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/OBIT/312089971 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 00:01:00 -0500 Kevin Andrew Broyles, 45, of Nettie, died December 3, 2016. Service will be 1 p.m., Saturday, December 10, at VanReenen Funeral Home, Marlinton. Friends may call from 6 to 9 p.m., Friday, December 9, at the funeral home.

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Donald Burger http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/OBIT/312089982 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/OBIT/312089982 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 00:01:00 -0500 Donald Charles "Donnie" Burger, 62, of Dunbar, passed away on Monday, December 5, 2016, after a sudden illness at CAMC-General Division. He died peacefully surrounded by loved ones at his bedside.

Donald was born on August 22, 1954 in Charleston to the late Charles G. and Hilda V. Burger of Dunbar.

Donald was a lifelong resident of Dunbar and was a 1972 graduate of Dunbar High School. He continued his education and graduated from WV State University in 1979 with a bachelor's degree in Architectural Technology. Donald was a retiree of Union Carbide and Dow Chemical after 29 years of service, where he was a designer of instrumentation and control systems. After retirement, Donald continued working for various engineering firms for Bayer Crop Science and DuPont.

Donald was well respected by his peers and colleagues for his attention to details and strong work ethic. He had beautiful penmanship and was quite artistically talented. He recently helped his nephew with a school project, drawing the structures of the brain on a model head.

Donald was a devoted family man who enjoyed spending time with his family and friends. His hobby was tinkering around the house working on various projects and making improvements. He had a real interest in electrical work; he was always adding wiring and outlets. Whenever he was laid off from work he became a wonderful househusband. He liked to stay busy and spent a lot of time at Lowe's.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his youngest daughter, Lorrie Elizabeth Fenn (March 15, 2013).

Donald is survived by his loving wife of 39 years, Nannette Gray Burger; daughter, Stephanie R. Dingess; sister, Margaret (Bryan) Spurlock and their sons, Benjamin and Adam all of Dunbar; brother, Thomas Burger; niece, Charlee Young; and two special furbabies, Lucy (cat) and Bailey (dog).

The family would like to thank the ER doctors at CAMC-General and other staff members for their quick response and compassion on Saturday night. They would also like to thank the NSICU Staff, Jan, Shane, Jason, Dr. Yella, Dr. Schmidt and others for their compassion, comfort, patience and support as we had to make a most difficult decision. You comforted and supported us; gave us time to say our goodbyes. We will be forever grateful for making a difficult time bearable.

Funeral service will be held at 1 p.m. on Friday, December 9, at Keller Funeral Home, Dunbar with the Rev. Dr. Okey Harless officiating. Burial will follow in Tyler Mountain Memory Gardens.

Visitation will be two hours prior to the service at Keller Funeral Home, Dunbar.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the American Heart Association, 162 Court Street, Charleston, WV 25301, The Ronald McDonald House 910 Pennsylvania Avenue, Charleston, WV 25302, or the Kanawha-Charleston Humane Association, 1248 Greenbrier St., Charleston, WV 25311.

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Johnny Canellas http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/OBIT/312089999 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/OBIT/312089999 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 00:01:00 -0500 Johnny W. Canellas, of Rockville, Md., born March 23, 1951, in Welch, W.Va., passed away peacefully, at home, Thursday morning surrounded by family.

He is survived by his wife of 44 years, Betty J. Canellas, married March 17, 1972; and sons, William J. Canellas and wife, Carrie Canellas, Jeffrey W. Canellas and fiancé, Kristin Woods, and John C. Canellas; grandsons, Timothy Canellas, Jesse Canellas, Jacob Canellas, John Giller, Michael Giller; siblings, Jackie Jeffrey, Margaret Shields, Steve Rife; nieces, Jodi Morgan Arthur, Olivia Moore; along with many other nieces and nephews and loving family members.

Johnny served in Vietnam as an Honored member of the United States Marie Corps. He worked in the Maitland Deep Shaft Coal Mines in Welch, W.Va., in 1975. He recently retired in 2015 after 38 years as Ray Foreman from the Rockville Department of Public Works.

Johnny enjoyed traveling to visit family in W.Va. and Tenn., square dancing with his wife, spades competitions, and he loved his four Yorkshire Terriers with all his heart. He will be greatly missed but not forgotten.

Memorial service will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., December 10, at the American Legion Post 86, 2013 Veirs Mill Rd. Rockville, MD 20851.

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PHOTOS: 'The Nutcracker' ushers in holiday season http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ06/161209559 GZ06 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ06/161209559 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 19:54:16 -0500 The Charleston Ballet and the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra present "The Nutcracker" Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m., with a matinee performance also planned for 2 p.m. Saturday.

The holiday tradition features more than 75 local dancers from the Charleston Ballet and guest artists from the Columbia Classical Ballet in South Carolina, accompanied by the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra.

Tickets start at $24 for adults and $12 for children under 12 and are available through the Clay Center Box Office by calling 304-561-3570. Tickets may also be ordered online at wvsymphony.org and theclaycenter.org.

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PHOTO: Civic Center work continues in cold http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ01/161209562 GZ01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ01/161209562 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 19:25:42 -0500 Work on the Charleston Civic Center renovation project continued in Thursday's chilly weather. The new facade is one of the main focal points of the nearly $90 million renovation project. The project is expected to be finished in 2017.

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PHOTO: Kanawha-Charleston Health Department celebrates accreditation http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0115/161209563 GZ0115 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0115/161209563 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 19:05:57 -0500 A celebration held Thursday at the Charleston Civic Center marked the Kanawha-Charleston Health Department's national accreditation from the Public Health Accreditation Board. The health department was one of 200 agencies nationwide to receive the accreditation.

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one of about 200 agencies nationwide to receive the imprimatur from the Public Health Accreditation Board.]]>
Former staffer remembers John Glenn http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ01/161209564 GZ01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ01/161209564 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 18:48:49 -0500 Ali Schmitz By Ali Schmitz One Charleston man said he has John Glenn to thank for his career in government.

Glenn died Thursday at the age of 95. After being the first U.S. astronaut to orbit the earth in 1962, he served as one of Ohio's U.S. Senators for 24 years.

For Brad White, now a financial planner in Charleston, John Glenn's death hit hard. White's first job after he graduated from Vanderbilt University was serving as a personal staffer for Glenn during his time in the Senate.

For five years White worked by Glenn's side, focusing primarily on defense and national security.

"He was instrumental in my career in government," said White, who later worked for the Department of Defense.

White said most mornings Glenn was the first person in the office. White sat next to the coffee machine, and he would often try to rush to work to beat Glenn to make the first pot of coffee.

White said Glenn's quiet reactions to discovering the coffee was already made would make his day. Glenn was always interested and engaged in every moment, he said.

"It really showed how humble and considerate he was," White said. "He was always there."

Just prior to Operation Desert Storm, White recalled Glenn holding a meeting with top military officials in his office. As they spread maps onto the floor of his office, they began to sit down on the floor next to them, closely examining details.

"He was so engaged as he and these four-star generals sat on the ground," White said.

White said he believes more politicians should consider behaving the way Glenn did during his time in the Senate. He said Glenn often focused on reaching across the aisle instead of competing.

"If you could sprinkle a little bit of John Glenn across the capitol today, the government would be better," White said.

After spending time in Washington, White headed to Charleston to form the White Planning Group with his father.

All alone in the tiny Friendship 7 spacecraft, Glenn made history in 1962 when he became the first American to orbit the Earth. His second trip to space in 1998, this time aboard the space shuttle Discovery, would also be record-breaking as he became the oldest man in space at age 77.

When Glenn went into space in 1998, White sat on his couch to watch. He said he was in tears, inspired by the man who changed his life.

He hopes the lessons Glenn taught him and many others stick with people for generations to come.

"He was just a true, real person that anyone should aspire to be," White said.

Reach Ali Schmitz at 304-348-4843, ali.schmitz@wvgazettemail.com, or follow @SchmitzMedia on Twitter.

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Ex-Navy base in WV to become health care campus http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0115/161209565 GZ0115 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0115/161209565 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 18:02:38 -0500 Rick Steelhammer By Rick Steelhammer The former U.S. Navy base at Sugar Grove, in Pendleton County, will be repurposed as a health care campus for active-duty military personnel and West Virginia residents, the General Services Administration announced Thursday

Last week, the GSA awarded the sale of the 123-acre facility to Robert Pike, who, according to the GSA, is working with Mellivora Partners, of Birmingham, Alabama, to begin the conversion.

Pike, whose address was not listed by the GSA, topped 14 other parties with a high bid of $4.01 million in a sealed-bid auction for the property, which ended Dec. 1. That sale followed an online auction for the property that ended in July, when an $11.2 million high bid was received but the party posting the bid was unable to complete the transaction and the base went back on the auction block.

The base, an element of the Naval Information Operations Command when it was vacated by the Navy in October 2015, began as a Naval Research Laboratory installation in 1955, and it was to be equipped with a radio-telescope tasked with monitoring Soviet radio and radar operations rebounding off the moon. That project was scrapped before the telescope's receiver could be installed, and the site became Naval Radio Station Sugar Grove, charged with processing radio traffic from the Navy's Atlantic Fleet.

After new antennas and a two-level underground operations center were added at a nearby restricted-access area served by the support facility - the section of the base sold in the auction - the facility was operated as a Naval Security Group Activity and was assigned an electronics intelligence mission. The support base was ordered decommissioned, according to the office of the Chief of Naval Operations, "as the result of the determination by its resource sponsor, the National Security Agency, to relocate the command's mission."

While the GSA had offered to transfer the vacant base free of charge to the West Virginia Division of Corrections for use as a women's prison, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin declined the offer, citing costs of $19 million to convert the base into a prison and $14 million a year to operate it, compared to $8 million to add more space for female offenders at the Lakin Correctional Center, where yearly operating costs would rise about $4 million.

"We are excited to have Sugar Grove Station repurposed and put back into use in the community," GSA Regional Administrator Sara Manzao-Diaz said after Pike was identified as the high bidder. "[The] GSA's disposal program is a win-win for all, enhancing local community development and serving as an economic catalyst, all while saving tax dollars."

Neither Pike nor Mellivora Partners could be reached for comment to elaborate on their plans for the facility.

Reach Rick Steelhammer at rsteelhammer@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-5169 or follow @rsteelhammer on Twitter.

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Education groups look to help students with budgeting http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0114/161209566 GZ0114 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0114/161209566 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 18:02:31 -0500 Jake Jarvis By Jake Jarvis Ikie Brooks had to quickly learn how to balance a budget.

During his first night at Marshall University, he walked down the road to go to the Sheetz. He learned that, yes, he could spend $24 without much thought. It was back at his dorm room that he realized that $24 might have been better tucked in a savings account or spent on a textbook for one of his classes at Marshall University.

"When you think about money, it gives you a little pit in your stomach when you don't have any," said Brooks, now a 21-year-old junior at Marshall. "When you think about having to go into class to tell a professor you didn't have any printer paper -- these are the things we take for granted."

A new financial literacy initiative from the Education Alliance won't be able to keep Brooks from late-night runs to Sheetz, but it might convince students like him to pay closer attention to their budgets

The alliance launched the Make Cents WV initiative in a Thursday morning news conference, topping off more than a year of work to bring together a host of state agencies including the State Auditor's Office, the West Virginia Bankers Association, the state Department of Education and the state Treasurer's office.

The initiative is funded by federal funds directed to West Virginia GEAR UP. It hopes to accomplish three things: implement financial literacy lesson plans in 100 classrooms across the state, increase participating students' knowledge of finances by 50 percent and to help the state's Higher Education Policy Commission ensure that 60 percent of all high school seniors complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

"To tell the truth, we had not had an emphasis on financial literacy prior to this," said Amelia Courts, president and CEO of the Education Alliance, an organization which works to help business understand the importance of support public schools. "But then we started looking at the data -- the number of kids in poverty and the number of kids not filling out the FAFSA."

The HEPC has known for a while that students need to have stronger financial literacy skills. The state agency approached the Education Alliance about a year and a half ago to discuss developing some sort of program to reach out to schools across the country.

When Courts and her organization began developing the initiative, they quickly learned that there were already some existing financial literacy resources out there. They were scattered, though, and not easily accessible in one place.

A new website, MakeCentsWV.org, tries to compile all of the new and existing resources into one place. Courts likens it to a "financial literacy toolbox." The website has information for family members, students and education and links to lesson plans developed by West Virginian teachers that integrate financial literacy with every grade level.

Paul Hill, HEPC Chancellor, said it might be hard to convince students and their families to log onto the website, but by integrating the information across different social studies and mathematics classes, students should learn from an early age the importance of finances.

"It's to also give students access to different career tracks and what they can anticipated what the current market is for that job," Hill said. "That's part of the educational process -- not only the banking and financial piece, but what you can anticipate if you borrow money for school."

The lesson plans were submitted by teachers across the state and then were vetted by a board of teachers prior to their inclusion in the website to ensure they were accurate, helpful and aligned with curriculum standards, according to Emily Pratt, a spokeswoman for the alliance.

"Yes, college is more expensive than when I went to college," Courts said. "West Virginia is in such a tough spot right now financially. We see many people that are laid off, and their families may have helped them save for college, but they don't have those same financial resources."

Reach Jake Jarvis at 304-348-7939, jake.jarvis@wvgazettemail.com, Facebook.com/newsroomjake or follow @NewsroomJake on Twitter.

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Canaan Valley to open ski slopes on Saturday; Winterplace possible for Sunday http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0702/161209567 GZ0702 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0702/161209567 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 17:28:20 -0500 Rick Steelhammer By Rick Steelhammer Canaan Valley Resort State Park's ski area will open on Saturday, with seven trails, including its 1.25-mile long Timber Trail, open for skiers and snowboarders, the resort announced on Thursday.

Thanks to cold temperatures and a doubling of snowmaking capacity during the off-season, "this is the earliest we've opened Timber Trail," said Steve Drumheller, Canaan Valley Resort general manager. "We started making snow a couple of weeks ago, and at one point, we had 71 snow guns running at the same time."

Timber Trail is expected to be the only top-to-bottom run open on Saturday, with the remaining open trails descending from the mid-station exit of the chairlift serving Timber Trail.

"We're making snow from the mid-station up and expecting 2 inches of natural snow on Saturday, so it's possible we may get some additional trails open this weekend," Drumheller said.

This season, skiers and snowboarders traveling from the Washington-Baltimore area will be able to drive on four-lane Corridor H from the Virginia border to Davis, leaving only about 12 miles of two-lane highway to travel before reaching Canaan Valley.

Timberline Four Seasons Resort, also located in Tucker County's Canaan Valley, is now scheduled to open on Dec. 23, while Winterplace Resort in near Ghent in Raleigh County could open as early as Sunday, said Joe Stevens, spokesman for the West Virginia Ski Areas Association.

Snowshoe Mountain Resort in Pocahontas County has been open since Nov. 25.

"It's the time of the year all of the resort operators look forward to getting open and have skiers and snowboarders head to the slopes," said Terry Pfeiffer, president of the West Virginia Ski Areas Association and also president of Winterplace. "All of the resorts will aggressively make snow whenever possible, guaranteeing visitors to the mountains of West Virginia a white Christmas."

The state's ski resorts annually attract more than 800,000 skier visits, and generate an estimated $250 million for the West Virginia economy.

Reach Rick Steelhammer at rsteelhammer@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-5169 or follow @rsteelhammer on Twitter.

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Gazette-Mail Charities: Second week's donations raise total over $38,000 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0104/161209568 GZ0104 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0104/161209568 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 17:13:28 -0500 The name on the donation form just said "Mr. ArtWalk," but there wasn't any doubt.

Phil Lawrence, the well-known 81-year-old volunteer for Charleston's monthly ArtWalk, was among the dozens of people and groups who donated to the Gazette-Mail Charities holiday drive this week.

All told, donations for the second week of the drive totaled more than $18,000. Combined with the first week of the drive, that means Gazette-Mail readers have donated more than $38,000 to the less fortunate in our area and the agencies that help them. But there's a long way to go to meet our goal.

Christmas is fast approaching, so if you haven't donated yet, please don't delay.

To donate, look for the form in today's paper or visit wvgazettemail.com and click on the Gazette-Mail Charities logo.

Here's the list of givers to the Gazette-Mail Charities fund drive this week:

William Lane, $200

Bob and Olivia Singleton, in memory of R. Ray Singleton, $200

Jo Retta Hunter, in memory of Edsel Davis, $500

Ellie and Mark Schaul, $100

Anonymous, in memory of George Moose, $50

Mary Pauley, in memory of Sarah Hayes, $20

Craig and Sue Selby, $250

Richard Savilla, $25

Marlene R. Dial, in memory of Jim Hyde, $100

Ann Wilburn, $50

Roberta M. Spence, in memory of Cecil M. Spence, $200

Mrs. Eleanor Byrnes, $100

Mary and Richard Comer, in memory of Margaret White, $100

Mad Max and Anita Maxwell, in honor of Betty Volkers, Paul Bland, Amanda and Madeline Maxwell, $25

Jack Fellure, $100

Donna J. Shaver, in memory of my parents, Don and Vida Shaver, $200

Flora Francis, in memory of Bud Francis, $50

Mr. ArtWalk, $100

Mrs. Sandy Williams, in memory of Mary, Lucia and Theresa, $50

Mr. and Mrs. William Jarrett, in honor of those in need, $100

Mike Whiteford, $200

Mildred Rector, in memory of Jim Rector, $50

Roxalana Gospel Adult Sunday School Class, $350

Larry and Sheree Robertson, in memory of our loved ones and in honor of our Savior's birth, $100

Richard and Cheri Bever, $200

Connie Davis, in memory of Thomas R. Davis Jr., $100

Joel Metz, $20

Margie and Bill Spence, in honor of Wesley, Cody and Hunter, $50

Mary L. Conley, in honor of Braxton, Mason, Parker, Kaylee and Kohen - my grandchildren, $50

Bill and Linda Nehr, in memory of Paul and Mildren Gum, Wilhelminia Nehr, Mary Lou Holmes and Helen Blaine, $25

Mad Max and Anita Maxwell, in memory of Noel, Pearl, Robert and Becky Bland, $25

Sandra Myers, in memory of Byrd and Thelma Myers, $100

Thelma Spencer, in memory of Marie, Virginia, Elizabeth and Erma, $100

Bob and Millie Lynn, $100

Melinda Crislip, $100, in memory of Robert and Lila White; Debbie Westmoreland, $100

William and Paula Durham, in memory of Paul L. Beverage, Arlene Van Reenan Beverage, William S. Durham Sr., Anna Hanson Durham and Sandra Fertig Morris, $125

Mary E. Dickens, in memory of George W. Duff, $50

Virginia Johnson, $100

Bill and Connie Fryer, $75

Anonymous, in memory of Martha Kate, $100

Nancy A. Breed, in memory of Jack Mills Martin, our grandson Caleb, Joseph Bond and Judy Buckley, $25

Gary and Ronna Hatfield, in memory of Myrtle and Lucian Craddock, $250

Sam and Melinda Sutton, in memory of Wilson Shuman, $50

Anonymous, in memory of Harry A. Jackson, $100

DeArmond Lafollette Arbogast, in memory of Tom and T.H. Edelblute, $200

Ms. Dolores Smith, $30

Lawson and Linda Freeman, in memory of Trina Simmers, $100

Terry L. Johnson, in memory of Ruth and Bob Johnson, $100

Douglas and Bonnie Fisher, $500

Sidney Hicks, in memory of my parents, $100

Carol Ann Robertson, in memory of Beavis, $75

Kathleen Watson, $100

Anonymous, in memory of Letitia Sheets and Ocie Mitchell, $100

Florence Frostick, $100

Sandra Nichols Price, in memory of Eliza Lee Nichols -- "My Mother", $50

Evelyn Greenlee, in memory of our sons, Ron and Steve, $2,000

Truist, $36

Anonymous, in memory of Helen, $150

Barry Myers, in memory of Ollie Ward Prichard, $40

Pamela and Robert Campe, $75

Teresa Hill Campbell, in memory of Hill-Campbell Families, $100

George Ann Grubb, in memory of my mom, Ruth Grubb, $100

Anonymous, in memory of J. Lyle Gillespie, $25

Diane and Paul Wallace, $200

Betty Warner, $100

Mr. John Baldwin, $100

Gary Young, in memory of Sid and Gladys Young, $200

Anonymous, in memory of Callie Nicole Sergent, $50

Arthur C. and Margaret O. Chapman, $50

Mr. and Mrs. K.G. Sturm, $20

James D. Hunter, in memory of Joy Hunter, $70

Elaine Wilson, in memory of Marvin and Rose Schmoll, $35

Anonymous, in honor of Gazette-Mail carriers, $25

Anonymous, in honor of Caleb Walsh, $25

Nancy Giacomo, $200

Freeman and Chiartas, Attorneys at Law, $100

Ms. R. Juanita Ong, in memory of deceased loved ones, $100

Anonymous, in honor of Ainsley, Grant, Lucy, $400

R.D. Robertson, in honor of Joe and Beacher Neenan, $25

Katherne S. Hastings, in memory of John W. Hastings, $50

Ross Nealy, in memory of Jeffrey Butler, $50

Barbara Lantz, in memory of Cliff, my beloved husband, $50

Chuck and Pam Wheeler, in memory of Sebert and Violet Lanham, and Bert and Eva Wheeler, $100

Ronald Kelemen, $40

Keith Larson, in memory of Frances Larson, $175

James W. Piercy, in memory of Jess and Pave Piercy, $200

Steve and Amy Golden, $300

Peggy McCommack, in honor of Parker and Brady, $50

Barb Gessner, in memory of Shelia Pringle, $25

Patsy Thompson, in memory of Ray Thompson, $50

Fay Jack, in memory of Kenny Jack, $25

Luke Martin, in honor of the Mom who has cancer, $10

Darlene Shamblin, in memory of Chester and Nancy Winterstein, $100

Stephen Fowler, in memory of Ryan David Blake, $200

Edward Milam, $100

Kay Tilton, in honor of Charlie Tilton, $100

Todd Witsberger, in memory of Dr. Robert C. Cochran, $200

Teresa Winfree, $500

Theresa DeLauder, in honor of Jim and Bev Triplett, $50

William Pugh, in memory of Bill Sr. and Pat Pugh, and John and Myrene Nixon, $200

Mary Stanley, in honor of Abigail, Lydia and Lee, $200

Kathy Parsons, in memory of Mildred and Paul Gum, $25

Debra James, in memory of Patricia James, $100

David Ellis, in memory of Raymond and Bertie Snyder, $20

Donald Pittenger, in memory of "Bear", $100

Dennis Boyles, in honor of 33-year-old Mom with terminal cancer trying to provide for 2 sons, $50

Paul Bailey, in memory of Donald Bailey, $50

Sam Silverstein, in honor of Sam Silverstein, $100

Anonymous (combined) total: $4,525.

Week 2 total: $18,266.

Grand Total (so far): $38,268.

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White House encourages passage of UMW benefit bill http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0101/161209570 GZ0101 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0101/161209570 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 17:11:29 -0500 Ken Ward Jr. By Ken Ward Jr. The White House on Thursday urged congressional Republicans to provide a long-term funding fix for the troubled health care and pension plans that serve tens of thousands of the nation's retired coal miners, calling it "quite cynical" that leading lawmakers would so far agree only to four months of help for a crisis faced by a constituency they played to heavily during the just-completed election campaign.

"Democrats are ready to solve this problem, and it's not lost on me, the irony, that Republicans are bragging about the kind of support they have from workers in coal country, particular retirees in coal country, and now are prepared to just extend their health care for [four] months," President Barack Obama's press secretary Josh Earnest said when asked about the issue during a daily press briefing.

"So, you know, we'll have to see exactly whether or not that's something that Republicans in Congress can fix before they send the bill to the White House," Earnest said.

In the House, Republican leaders passed an emergency spending bill - aimed at avoiding a looming federal government shutdown - without adding a permanent funding measure the United Mine Workers is seeking for health care and pension plans serving 120,000 current and future retired miners and their families.

The spending bill now goes to the Senate, where Democrats including Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., have vowed to try to stop all other legislation unless Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky gives them an up-or-down vote on the long-term miner benefit and pension language.

"We are still fighting alongside our allies in the Senate to stop this travesty," said Phil Smith, a UMW spokesman.

Retired miners and their families are facing uncertainty because a key UMW pension plan remains severely underfunded following huge investment losses during the 2008 Wall Street financial collapse.

The ongoing downturn in the coal industry has also forced some major producers into bankruptcy court, where they were able to legally shed their pension and health care benefit liabilities.

Also in immediate trouble because of bankruptcy court rulings in favor of coal companies are the health care benefits for 22,000 retired miners who worked for companies like Patriot Coal, Arch Coal and Peabody Energy. More than 16,000 of those retirees are facing the loss of their benefits after Dec. 31. Another 2,500 will lose their benefits in March and 4,000 more in August, according to the UMW.

UMW-backed legislation called the Miners Protection Act would allow the pensions and benefits to be funded through part of a transfer of up to $490 million a year in general tax dollars that already flow through the federal Abandoned Mine Land program annually, as part of the complex formula that provides additional money for the abandoned mine cleanup program and UMW health care benefit programs.

In September, the bill easily passed through the Senate Finance Committee, and its 25 co-sponsors include 11 Republicans, including West Virginia Sen. Shelley Moore Capito.

The House spending bill, though, provides only $45 million to provide health care benefits through April. It includes no fix for the union's pension plan and the health care benefit money it does provide it takes from an existing union benefit program that covers a different group of retirees.

Rep. David McKinley, R-W.Va., said Thursday that the short-term bill provides UMW families "little relief" and that he was deeply disturbed that this bill does not include a long-term solution. McKinley blamed the crisis faced by UMW retirees on "excessive regulations that forced their former employers into bankruptcy," though most experts have said coal's downturn was caused more by competition with low-priced natural gas than government rules.

Speaking on the House floor, McKinley said threatening to stop the spending bill was not a solution, asked House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers, R-Ky., to commit to working toward a long-term answer when lawmakers return in January.

"I am committed to working with you and other members representing coal country to arrive at a lasting solution to this problem in the new Congress and provide some lasting relief to our coal fields which have suffered so much in the last eight years," Rogers responded.

The Miners Protection Act is the most recent in a long line of federal government actions aimed at protecting coal miners, whose work often leaves them sick or disabled, but whose industry has frequently tried to dodge long-term liabilities for health care benefits and pensions.

Government involvement dates back to the 1940s, when creation of a health and welfare fund for miners through a deal between legendary UMW President John L. Lewis and then-Interior Secretary Julius A. Krug helped end a stalemate between the union and the government, which had seized the nation's mines in response to a strike.

More recently, Congress passed legislation in 1992 to preserve benefits for UMW retirees, as coal companies tried to abandon the union's national contract and benefit programs. And since 1995, interest on the federal AML program's trust fund - a fund that comes from coal industry taxes - was diverted to ensure health care benefits for retirees.

A long-term fix for the UMW benefits programs was part of the Obama administration's plan to provide financial help to struggling coalfield communities, and was part of a similar plan proposed by Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. President-elect Donald Trump is not known to have mentioned the issue publicly during his campaign.

Reach Ken Ward Jr. at kward@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-1702 or follow @kenwardjr on Twitter.

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WV GOP opposes Manchin in Trump Cabinet http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0101/161209572 GZ0101 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0101/161209572 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 16:51:00 -0500 Andrew Brown By Andrew Brown Sen. Joe Manchin is to meet with Donald Trump Friday morning, according to a report from Trump's transition team, and West Virginia's Republican Party is upset that the president-elect reportedly is considering West Virginia's lone Democratic member of Congress for a Cabinet position.

In the past week, numerous news outlets have suggested that Manchin has been floated as a candidate for the secretary of energy or secretary of state - something the state Republican Party is publicly opposing.

"While Republicans in West Virginia appreciate President-Elect Donald Trump's desire for a diverse Cabinet and his understanding of the need for bipartisanship, we, in the strongest possible terms, encourage him to choose a true conservative who has never sold out our energy industries and working families to the Obama-Clinton Team," said Conrad Lucas, the state Republican chairman.

The expected meeting between Trump and Manchin was reported in The Washington Post, which provided a transcript of a daily news briefing from the Trump transition team.

"Looking ahead to Friday morning, the president-elect will be at Trump Tower meeting with Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia," said Jason Miller, the transition team's communications director.

Jonathan Kott, Manchin's communication director, said Thursday that his office still had not been given an indication of what the president-elect is expecting to speak with Manchin about.

Kott said the senator was instead focused on trying to rally support for a bill to save unionized coal miners' pensions, which the Republican-led Congress has failed to pass.

Lucas and other state Republicans, however, are adamantly opposing any suggestion that Manchin be given a powerful position in the Trump presidency.

Calling West Virginia's senior senator "Traitor Joe," Lucas said Manchin has, for decades, "worked to promote himself, his family and his political cronies."

Lucas specifically criticized Manchin for his support of the Affordable Care Act, his endorsement of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and an alternative-energy law passed by Manchin when he was governor, although it did little to nothing to expand renewable energy sources.

Lucas also attacked Manchin for his bipartisan effort to pass a bill that would have closed loopholes that allow people to avoid background checks when buying guns. He sponsored that law after 20 children and six adults were gunned down at Sandy Hook Elementary School, in Connecticut.

Manchin is one of the most centrist Democrats in Congress, and often votes with Republicans on energy-related bills.

"West Virginians voted for Donald Trump at a higher percentage than any other state in the nation," Lucas said. "West Virginia Republicans support Donald Trump and are more excited about his presidency than he could possibly imagine."

Reach Andrew Brown at andrew.brown@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-4814 or follow @Andy_Ed_Brown on Twitter.

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Despite 1-time benefits, WV tax collection continues fall http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0101/161209574 GZ0101 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0101/161209574 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 16:39:09 -0500 Phil Kabler By Phil Kabler At first glance, West Virginia's revenue intake for November doesn't look so bad, with tax collections of $295.6 million being just 1 percent short of estimates and $5.5 million higher than November 2015.

However, as Revenue Secretary Bob Kiss pointed out Thursday during the monthly revenue briefing, those numbers are deceiving.

Take away a $10.1 million transfer from a workers' compensation trust fund, intended to reduce the current budget shortfall, and an $8 million increase in tobacco tax collections, driven by a 65-cent a pack increase in the tobacco tax, and the November numbers don't look so good.

"It really wasn't necessarily that good of news," Kiss said. "We anticipate a growing deficit going forward, maybe not at as quick a pace."

Thursday's revenue briefing was perhaps overshadowed by Kiss' presentation Tuesday to a legislative interim committee, where he warned legislators that there is a "significant structural hole" in the state's finances, which likely will cause a funding shortfall in excess of $400 million in the 2017-18 budget year, with similar deficits projected for several years beyond.

"If it continues, it doesn't bode well for the state, and it doesn't bode well for state services and programs," Kiss said Thursday. "If you don't fix it, over time, it will devastate the state's finances."

He said he was dismayed that the Legislature, to date, has been unwilling or unable to come up with long-term solutions to address the structural hole in the budget, and likened it to 1989, when the Legislature had to pass nearly $400 million in tax increases after allowing similar financial woes to linger for several years.

Five months into the 2016-17 budget year, the current budget shortfall grew to $91.5 million in November, as the two main pillars of state taxes - sales taxes and personal income taxes - are running about 6 percent below projections.

Looking at one key economic indicator, payroll withholding taxes for October and November, Deputy Revenue Secretary Mark Muchow said the numbers are essentially unchanged from 2015, and that's actually an improvement after payroll taxes dropped 1 percent from 2014.

"We went from a negative-1 percent to 0 percent," he said. "That's an improvement, but we're talking about a fairly microscopic improvement."

If there's any good news in the November revenue report, Muchow said, severance tax collections of $26.75 million marked the third straight month those collections met estimates.

Coal production is roughly equal to this point last year, and natural gas prices are rising after falling to historic lows, he said.

Reach Phil Kabler at philk@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-1220 or follow @PhilKabler on Twitter.

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AFL-CIO's Perdue set to retire http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ03/161209575 GZ03 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ03/161209575 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 16:39:04 -0500 Max Garland By Max Garland West Virginia AFL-CIO President Kenny Perdue will retire at the end of the year, the union group announced Thursday.

Perdue, 64, has been president of the union since 2004. He served as vice president of the group from 1989 to 1997 and secretary-treasurer from 1997 to 2004.

"While I look forward to spending more time with my wife and family (which includes eight grandchildren and three great-grandchildren), this decision didn't come easily," Perdue said in a prepared statement. "Throughout my years of service, I have been inspired by the work ethic, integrity and kindness of working West Virginians, who ask for no more than the fair wages, quality benefits and safe workplaces they deserve."

The state AFL-CIO executive board is expected to select Perdue's replacement within the next week.

That person will serve until the end of Perdue's term, which runs through October. Then, a full election for a new president will take place.

"It has been a true pleasure advocating for West Virginia working families and representing our union partners," Perdue said. "I look forward to assisting as the West Virginia AFL-CIO and the labor movement across our country continues this critical work."

Perdue, a Clarksburg native, is currently a part of the West Virginia Workforce Investment Council and the Judicial Vacancy Advisory Board. He has also been a sheet metal worker for more than 40 years.

This year, West Virginia unions have been fighting against right-to-work laws and the repeal of prevailing wage. They mounted a targeted campaign against Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Cole leading up to the election.

Reach Max Garland at max.garland@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-4886 or follow @MaxGarlandTypes on Twitter.

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Boil-water advisories: Dec. 9, 2016 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0112/161209576 GZ0112 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0112/161209576 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 16:31:39 -0500 n West Virginia American Water has issued a boil-water advisory for approximately 50 customers in the Sissonville area. The affected roads are Rich Fork Road, from house number 4500 to Craigs Branch Road, Craigs Branch Road and Midridge Way. The advisory follows a water main break.

n Putnam Public Service District has issued a boil-water advisory for house numbers 394, 428, 476, 562 North Poplar Fork Road, all of Marie Drive and Deer Valley. The advisory follows a water main break.

Customers in these areas are urged to boil their water for at least one full minute prior to use until further notice.

n West Virginia American water has lifted the boil-water advisory for three commercial customers in the 600 block of 9th Street in Huntington.

n West Virginia American Water has lifted the boil-water advisory for approximately 50 customers on 21st street from box 500 to Fairlawn Avenue and Virginia Avenue from 20th Street to 21st Street in Dunbar.

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Pioneering astronaut John Glenn dead at 95 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0113/161209577 GZ0113 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ0113/161209577 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 15:59:58 -0500 By The Associated Press By By The Associated Press WASHINGTON - John Glenn, whose 1962 flight as the first U.S. astronaut to orbit the Earth made him an all-American hero and propelled him to a long career in the U.S. Senate, died Thursday. The last survivor of the original Mercury 7 astronauts was 95.

Glenn died at the James Cancer Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, where he'd been for more than a week, said Hank Wilson, communications director for the John Glenn School of Public Affairs.

John Herschel Glenn Jr. had two major career paths that often intersected: flying and politics, and he soared in both of them.

Before he gained fame orbiting the world, he was a fighter pilot in two wars and, as a test pilot, he set a transcontinental speed record.

He later served 24 years in the Senate from Ohio. A rare setback was a failed 1984 run for the Democratic presidential nomination.

His long political career enabled him to return to space in the shuttle Discovery at age 77 in 1998, a cosmic victory lap that he relished and turned into a teachable moment about growing old. He holds the record for the oldest person in space.

More than anything, Glenn was the ultimate and uniquely American space hero: a combat veteran with an easy smile, a strong marriage of 70 years and nerves of steel. Schools, a space center and the Columbus airport were named after him. So were children.

The Soviet Union leaped ahead in space exploration by putting the Sputnik 1 satellite into orbit in 1957, and then launched the first man in space, cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin, in a 108-minute orbital flight on April 12, 1961. After two suborbital flights by Alan Shepard Jr. and Gus Grissom, it was up to Glenn to be the first American to orbit the Earth.

"Godspeed, John Glenn," fellow astronaut Scott Carpenter radioed just before Glenn thundered off a Cape Canaveral launch pad, now a National Historic Landmark, to a place America had never been. At the time of that Feb. 20, 1962, flight, Glenn was 40 years old.

With the all-business phrase, "Roger, the clock is operating; we're underway," Glenn radioed to Earth as he started his 4 hours, 55 minutes and 23 seconds in space. Years later, he explained he said that because he didn't feel like he had lifted off and it was the only way he knew he had launched.

During the flight, Glenn uttered a phrase that he would repeat frequently throughout life: "Zero G, and I feel fine."

"It still seems so vivid to me," Glenn said in a 2012 interview with The Associated Press on the 50th anniversary of the flight. "I still can sort of pseudo feel some of those same sensations I had back in those days during launch and all."

Glenn said he often was asked if he was afraid, and he replied, "If you are talking about fear that overcomes what you are supposed to do, no. You've trained very hard for those flights."

Glenn's ride in the cramped Friendship 7 spacecraft had its scary moments, though. Sensors showed that his heat shield was loose after three orbits, and Mission Control worried that he might burn up during re-entry, when temperatures reached 3,000 degrees. But the heat shield held.

Even before then, Glenn flew in dangerous skies. He was a fighter pilot in World War II and Korea who flew low, got his plane riddled with bullets, flew with baseball great Ted Williams and earned macho nicknames during 149 combat missions. And as a test pilot, he broke aviation records.

The green-eyed, telegenic U.S. Marine even won $25,000 on the game show "Name That Tune" with a 10-year-old partner. And that was before April 6, 1959, when his life changed by being selected as one of the Mercury 7 astronauts and instantly started attracting more than his share of the spotlight.

Glenn, in later years, regaled crowds with stories of NASA's testing of would-be astronauts, from psychological tests - one with 20 answers to the open-ended question "I am" - to surviving spinning that pushed 16 times normal gravity against his body, popping blood vessels.

But it wasn't nearly as bad as going to Cape Canaveral to see the first unmanned rocket test.

"We're watching this thing go up and up and up ... and, all at once, it blew up right over us, and that was our introduction to the Atlas [rocket]," Glenn said in 2011. "We looked at each other and wanted to have a meeting with the engineers in the morning."

In 1959, Glenn wrote in Life magazine: "Space travel is at the frontier of my profession. It is going to be accomplished, and I want to be in on it. There is also an element of simple duty involved. I am convinced that I have something to give this project."

That sense of duty was instilled at an early age. Glenn was born July 18, 1921, in Cambridge, Ohio, and grew up in New Concord, Ohio, with the nickname "Bud." He joined the town band as a trumpeter at age 10 and accompanied his father one Memorial Day in an echoing version of taps. In his 1999 memoir, Glenn wrote "that feeling sums up my childhood. It formed my beliefs and my sense of responsibility. Everything that came after that just came naturally."

His love of flight was lifelong; John Glenn Sr. spoke of the many summer evenings he'd arrive home to find his son running around the yard with outstretched arms, pretending he was piloting a plane.

Last June, at a ceremony renaming the Columbus airport for him, Glenn recalled imploring his parents to take him to that airport to look at planes whenever they passed through the city: "It was something I was fascinated with."

He piloted his own private plane until age 90.

Glenn's goal of becoming a commercial pilot was changed by World War II. He left Muskingum College to join the Naval Air Corps and, soon after, the Marines.

He became a successful fighter pilot who flew 59 hazardous missions, often as a volunteer or as the requested backup of assigned pilots.

A war later, in Korea, he earned the nicknames "MiG-Mad Marine" and "Old Magnet Ass" (which he sometimes paraphrased as "Old Magnet Tail"), for his uncanny ability to keep his airplane under him even though it was riddled by enemy fire.

"I was the one who went in low and got them," Glenn said, explaining that he often landed with huge holes in the side of his aircraft because he didn't like to shoot from high altitudes.

Glenn's public life began when he broke the transcontinental airspeed record, bursting from Los Angeles to New York City in three hours, 23 minutes and 8 seconds. With his F-8 Crusader averaging 725 mph, the 1957 flight proved that the jet could endure stress when pushed to maximum speeds over long distances.

In New York, he got a hero's welcome - his first tickertape parade. He got another after his spaceflight in Friendship 7.

That mission also introduced Glenn to politics. He addressed a joint session of Congress, and dined at the White House. He became friends with President John F. Kennedy and an ally and friend of his brother, Robert. The Kennedys urged him to enter politics and, after a difficult few starts, he did.

Glenn spent 24 years in the U.S. Senate, representing Ohio longer than any other senator in the state's history. He announced his impending retirement in 1997, 35 years to the day after he became the first American in orbit, saying "there is still no cure for the common birthday."

Glenn returned to space in a long-anticipated second flight in 1998 aboard the space shuttle Discovery. He got to move around aboard the shuttle for far longer - nine days, compared with just under five hours in 1962 - as well as sleep and experiment with bubbles in weightlessness.

In a news conference from space, Glenn said "to look out at this kind of creation out here and not believe in God is, to me, impossible."

NASA tailored a series of geriatric-reaction experiments to create a scientific purpose for Glenn's mission, but there was more to it than that: a revival of the excitement of the earliest days of the space race against the Soviets, a public relations bonanza and the gift of a lifetime.

"America owed John Glenn a second flight," NASA Administrator Dan Goldin said.

Glenn would later write that, when he mentioned the idea of going back into space to his wife, Annie, she responded: "Over my dead body."

Glenn and his crewmates flew 3.6 million miles, compared to his 75,000 miles aboard Friendship 7.

Shortly before he ran for the 1984 Democratic presidential nomination, a new generation was introduced to astronaut Glenn with the film adaptation of Tom Wolfe's book, "The Right Stuff." He was portrayed as the ultimate straight arrow amid a group of hard-partying astronauts.

Glenn said in 2011: "I don't think any of us cared for the movie 'The Right Stuff'; I know I didn't."

Glenn was unable to capitalize on the publicity, though, and his poorly organized campaign was short-lived. He dropped out of the race with his campaign $2.5 million in the red - a debt that lingered even after he retired from the Senate in 1999.

He later joked that, except for going into debt, humiliating his family and gaining 16 pounds, running for president was a good experience.

Glenn generally steered clear of campaigns after that, saying he didn't want to mix politics with his second spaceflight. He sat out the Senate race to succeed him - he was hundreds of miles above Earth on Election Day - and largely was quiet in the 2000 presidential race.

He'd first run for the Senate in 1964, but he left the race when he suffered a concussion after slipping in the bathroom and hitting his head on the tub.

He tried again in 1970, but he was defeated in the primary by Howard Metzenbaum, who later lost the general election to Robert Taft Jr. It was the start of a complex relationship with Metzenbaum, whom he later joined in the Senate.

For the next four years, Glenn devoted his attention to business and investments that made him a multimillionaire. He had joined the board of Royal Crown Cola after the aborted 1964 campaign, and was president of Royal Crown International from 1967 to 1969. In the early 1970s, he remained with Royal Crown and invested in a chain of Holiday Inns.

In 1974, Glenn ran against Metzenbaum in what turned into a bitter primary and won the election. He eventually made peace with Metzenbaum, who won election to the Senate in 1976.

Glenn set a record in 1980 by winning re-election with a 1.6-million vote margin.

He became an expert on nuclear weaponry and was the Senate's most dogged advocate of nonproliferation. He was the leading supporter of the B-1 Lancer supersonic bomber when many in Congress doubted the need for it. As chairman of the Governmental Affairs Committee, he turned a microscope on waste and fraud in the federal bureaucracy.

Glenn said the lowest point of his life was 1990, when he and four other senators came under scrutiny for their connections to Charles Keating, the notorious financier who eventually served prison time for his role in the costly savings and loan failure of the 1980s. The Senate Ethics Committee cleared Glenn of serious wrongdoing but said he "exercised poor judgment."

The episode was the only brush with scandal in his long public career and didn't diminish his popularity in Ohio.

Glenn joked that the only astronaut he was envious of was his fellow Ohioan: Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon.

"I've been very fortunate to have a lot of great experiences in my life, and I'm thankful for them," he said in 2012.

In 1943, Glenn married his childhood sweetheart, Anna Margaret Castor. They met when they were toddlers, and when she had mumps as a teenager, he came to her house, cut a hole in her bedroom window screen, and passed her a radio to keep her company, a friend recounted.

"I don't remember the first time I told Annie I loved her, or the first time she told me," Glenn would write in his memoir. "It was just something we both knew."

He bought her a diamond engagement ring in 1942 for $125. It's never been replaced.

They had two children, Carolyn and John David.

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Jan Young: Saving our First Amendment rights (Gazette) http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ04/161209578 GZ04 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20161208/GZ04/161209578 Thu, 8 Dec 2016 14:46:01 -0500 By Jan Young By By Jan Young

For at least 20 years now, the issue of what is called "Second Amendment rights" has played a prominent, even a decisive, role in American politics. Most don't remember this now but, if West Virginia had gone for Gore instead of Bush in the 2000 election, Gore would have been president and there would have been no Florida recount, or hanging chads, or the Supreme Court decision making Bush president. And at that time, West Virginia was a pretty reliable "blue" state. But Charlton Heston came here to campaign, stoking the fear that Gore wanted to take away our guns, and enough of West Virginia went for Bush to give him our electoral votes.

"Second Amendment rights" have never really been in danger, despite the NRA's constant fear-mongering on the subject, but we have now elected a president who poses a severe threat to our FIRST Amendment rights: those of speech, religion, the press and assembly. Throughout his campaign, he has launched repeated assaults on those freedoms, which are the bedrock of American democracy and, without which, America would no longer be recognizable.

He not only removed protesters from his campaign rallies, whether they were disruptive or not, but encouraged the crowd to attack them.

He also wants libel laws changed so that he can sue when things are printed that he doesn't like. His attacks on the press were continuous, calling reporters out as liars and "terrible people" at every rally and barring those whose reporting he didn't like from his events.

Whatever we may think of the "mainstream media," they are our link to information. The thought that legitimate reporters could be barred from obtaining information on a president and his actions is frightening.

Trump's disdain for freedom of religion was obvious in his proposal for a Muslim ban. In addition, in one of his final campaign speeches (in Detroit on Nov. 5), he spoke of us as accomplishing great things as "one people, under one God." In this "one god" formulation of America, no Buddhists, Sikhs, Hindus, atheists or, probably, Muslims are included, to say nothing of others who quietly follow scores of minority religions.

When our Founding Fathers placed the freedoms of speech, religion, press and assembly first in the Bill of Rights, they may have been signaling their belief that these freedoms were the most critical to American democracy. We are entering a period when we may have to fight as fiercely for these rights as any Second Amendment advocate, or we may soon find ourselves without the rights and protections we take for granted.

Jan Young lives in Oak Hill.

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