1. Waiting for grandpa to come back home

    The story of one Israeli hostage and his 3-year-old granddaughter

    By Anav Silverman Peretz, Special to The Southern Star

    Updated July 22, 2024 at 11:13 a.m.

    A few weeks ago, I was sitting with my family at McDonalds, on the way back home to our home in the Negev desert after a visit with our in-laws in Raanana. Our kids were munching on French fries, while my husband went to get our order. I watched Israelis, young and old, sitting together in the American fast food chain, quite popular in Israel. 

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  2. President Trump survives assassination attempt at Pennsylvania rally

    By Christina Faulkner

    Former President Donald Trump was the target of an assassination attempt Saturday, July 13, while speaking at a rally in Butler, Pennsylvania. The rally took place two days before Trump accepted the Republican nomination for the third time and named his running mate, Senator JD Vance of Ohio.

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  3. Donald K. Hallford re-appointed to state board

    Staff Reports

    Donald K. Hallford of Ozark was recently re-appointed as the Resident Director for Dale County on the Board of Directors of the Choctawhatchee, Pea and Yellow Rivers Watershed Management Authority (CPYRWMA) for a four-year term. The Oath of Office was administered to Mr. Hallford on Tuesday, May 21, 2024, at a ceremony held in the Dale County Courthouse. He has served on the Board since September 2007 when he was initially appointed by the Dale County Soil & Water Conservation District.

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  4. New opportunities await Ozark middle schoolers with Career Exploration Center

    By Christina Faulkner

    Middle schoolers in Ozark have something new to look forward to this coming school year. Along with a new principal, students at D.A. Smith Middle School will have the opportunity to explore career opportunities relevant to Ozark, thanks to the opening of the new Career Exploration Center (CEC). The renovations of the old school building, costing approximately $990,000, have transformed it into a state-of-the-art learning environment.

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  5. Commission authorizes changes to DCSO remodel; conducts other business at recent meeting

    By Caitlyn Cummings

    The July 9 meeting of the Dale County Commission was busy and many items were brought before the commission for approval.

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  6. The Newman family’s influence on Old Mt. Zion Cemetery and the Klondyke Community

    By Caitlyn Cummings

    On Highway 231, as one drives toward Dothan, Whispering Pines Manufactured Homes Community sits on the left just before crossing County Road 18. Within that community lies a small cemetery with a storied background.

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  7. Obituary Mr. Richard Frank Kohler

    Mr. Richard Frank Kohler, a resident of Ozark, died Monday, July 15, 2024, in Southeast Health Medical Center in Dothan, Alabama. He was 67 years old.

    A memorial service for Mr. Kohler will be held 2:00 P.M. Thursday, July 18, 2024, in the Chapel of Holman Funeral Home in Ozark with Pastor Derek McCarty officiating, Holman Funeral Home of Ozark directing. 

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  8. Freedom Fest lights up Novosel

    By Travis Parker

    Ft. Novosel had another extremely successful Freedom Fest on a beautiful late July 3 afternoon with a slight overcast that kept some of the late summer, south Alabama heat down. Plenty of food choices, vendor booths with an almost endless variety of items to buy, a fantastic lineup of musical talent, and an extraordinary fireworks display to top it off, made the event unforgettable.

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  9. Alabama's Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday offers big savings

    By Christina Faulkner

    Parents across Alabama are gearing up to take advantage of the savings offered by the state's 19th annual back-to-school sales tax holiday. This year, the holiday will take place from Friday, July 19, to Sunday, July 21, marking the eighth time it has occurred during the third weekend of July.

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  10. Dancing for dreams: Miss Bronze Adult Prom to sparkle for scholarships

    By Christina Faulkner

    The Miss Bronze Pageant Association is thrilled to announce its annual scholarship fundraiser, the Adult Prom, set to take place on Saturday, July 20. This year’s theme, “It’s a Purple, Gold, and Green Mardi Gras Evening,” promises a vibrant and festive atmosphere at the Perry Rec Center.

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  11. Coffee with a Cop on Post

    By Travis Parker

    The Ft. Novosel Criminal Investigative Division (CID) Unit joined with the national CID to hold a Community Outreach Program called Coffee With a Cop which gave them a chance to “break bread” with the local community. The event was held in the Lyster Clinic on Post at the Starbucks section. Free vouchers were given to people who stopped by and wanted to drink a cup of coffee while they chatted and got a glimpse into the world of the Army’s Criminal Division.

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  12. Greater Sardis Missionary Baptist Church celebrates 137th Anniversary and Homecoming

    By Christina Faulkner

    Greater Sardis Missionary Baptist Church, located at 702 West Reynolds St., has announced its much-awaited church anniversary and homecoming celebration. The congregation is inviting all to attend this special event on Sunday, July 21, at 2:00 p.m.

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  13. Ozark mayor gives State of the City address

    By Caitlyn Cummings

    Ozark mayor Mark Blankenship gave an enlightening State of the City address on Thursday, June 27 at the Holman House, highlighting the many civic and economic projects that have worked to grow Ozark over the past year.

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  14. The Southern Star awarded five prestigious honors at 2024 APA Awards

    By Christina Faulkner

    The Southern Star made a notable impact at this year’s Alabama Press Association (APA) Media Awards Contest, earning five commendable awards across various categories, highlighting the dedication and talent of its team.

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  15. School board appointment sparks debate in City Council

    By Caitlyn Cummings

    The Ozark City Council appointed Tameaca Vincent to the Ozark City Schools Board of Education at the last city council meeting held June 18. Vincent will replace Herman Jackson, who did not seek reappointment when his term ended at the end of May. 

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  16. Homeless confront nature's fury without shelter

    By Christina Faulkner

    As summer unfolds, Southeast Alabama, particularly Dale County, faces the dual threats of extreme heat and severe weather, including hurricanes. For the county's homeless population, these threats are not just uncomfortable but potentially life-threatening. With no dedicated shelters and limited resources, addressing these dangers has become a pressing issue for the community.

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  17. Dive into clean waters with Dale County's free One-Day Water Testing Event on July 12

    Submitted by County Extension Coordinator Melissa Voynich

    Dale County is bringing a new and free program together for the first time in the state of Alabama on July 12, and we welcome you to learn with us.

    If you have any outdoor or well water, you are someone who works in an ag-related industry, or you are interested in environmental factors affecting our water (see? There are a lot of reasons!) it is always good to be aware of water management resources that are low or no cost to you.

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  18. Ozark celebrates installation of Safe Haven Baby Box

    By Christina Faulkner

    The City of Ozark marked a significant milestone on Monday, June 24, with the blessing and installation of Alabama’s sixth Safe Haven Baby Box at Ozark Fire Station #3. This latest addition not only serves as a beacon of hope but also underscores a critical resource for mothers in crisis across Alabama.

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  19. Cold case cracked: Ozark Police arrest suspect in 2018 murder

    By Christina Faulkner

    In a breakthrough development, the Ozark Police Department's Investigations Unit has successfully arrested a suspect in a cold case murder investigation that has haunted the community for over six years. Jarrette Isaiah Rodgers, 34, was apprehended on the evening of June 5 in connection with the 2018 murder of Cornelius Crittendon.

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  20. Juneteenth 2024 celebrates culture, unity and hope

    By Christina Faulkner

    The second annual Juneteenth celebration in downtown Ozark unfolded with vibrant energy and community spirit, drawing an enthusiastic crowd. Organized by Ozark Juneteenth event coordinator Winnie Frazier, the event served as a poignant tribute to African American heritage and resilience. The celebration commemorated Juneteenth's historical significance.

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  21. CAF launches campaign for sickle cell awareness

    By Christina Faulkner

    Dothan – The Community Advancement Foundation (CAF) kicked off its annual fundraising campaign with the “Weekend Lunch and Launch” at the Wiregrass Rehabilitation Center in Dothan, marking World Sickle Cell Day. The event is the first in a series aimed at raising awareness about Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) and supporting affected individuals and families in Southeast Alabama.

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  22. City Council authorizes agreements for non-emergency transport van use; issues Juneteenth proclamation at meeting

    By Caitlyn Cummings

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  23. Ozark comes alive with line dancing extravaganza

    By Caitlyn Cummings

    The heart of downtown Ozark came alive with the vibrant energy of hundreds of local citizens, both young and old, who gathered for an exciting line dancing event organized by Ozark Parks and Recreation on Friday, June 14. Participants basked in the beautiful weather, enjoying the warmth and camaraderie of the June afternoon. The lively dances were expertly guided by Kalvin Allen of KLPA Line Dancing from Troy whose infectious enthusiasm and skillful choreography brought joy and rhythm to everyone in attendance.

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  24. Arrest made in Ozark shooting incident

    By Christina Faulkner

    The Ozark Police Department has made an arrest in connection with a shooting incident that occurred on May 5 at a local business in Ozark. The incident, which unfolded during a party attended by over thirty individuals, resulted in one person being shot in the leg and others fearing for their safety.

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  25. Wiregrass Aviation's ARPA expenditure greenlit

    By Caitlyn Cummings

    In a short, but productive meeting of the Dale County Commission, the Commission took action to upgrade equipment for Wiregrass Aviation, LLC. on Tuesday, June 11. In addition to upgrading equipment, the Commission approved the continuance of an agreement with the Alabama Department of Transportation and named an Assistant Safety Coordinator. 

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  26. Miriam Shehane, Founder of VOCAL and Clio Native, Dies at 91

    By Christina Faulkner

    Miriam Shehane, a resident of Clio and the founder of Victims of Crime and Leniency (VOCAL), passed away on Monday, June 17 at the age of 91. Following a recent illness, she leaves behind a legacy of tireless advocacy for crime victims and a profound impact on her community and beyond.

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  27. Summer Sizzles as Dale County Extension sparks community fun

    Submitted by Melissa Voynich, County Extension Coordinator 

    We hope you are enjoying the festivities of summer, including strolling through the Ozark Farmer’s Market on Saturdays and joining in on the many great summer educational opportunities.

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  28. Obituary - Mr. Christopher Todd “Chris” Woodham

    Mr. Christopher Todd “Chris” Woodham, a resident of Ozark, passed away Monday, June 17, 2024, in Flowers Hospital.  He was 54 years old.

    A memorial service for Mr. Woodham will be held 2:00 P.M. Saturday, June 22, 2024, in the Chapel of Holman Funeral Home in Ozark, Holman Funeral Home of Ozark directing.

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  29. City of Ozark shows strong financial health in latest audit report

    By Christina Faulkner

    At the recent City Council meeting in May, Mary Leslie from Carr, Riggs, and Ingram presented the audit report for the City of Ozark, revealing a positive financial outlook and sound management practices. The audit, covering the fiscal year ending September 30, 2023, detailed both a comprehensive financial audit and a single audit, which is mandated for cities spending more than $750,000 in federal funds.

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  30. Barry Moore thanks the Wiregrass

    By Travis Parker

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  31. Daleville man jailed for shots fired, threats

    By Christina Faulkner

    A call for service to 9-1-1 operators at the Daleville Communication Center on Thursday afternoon, June 6, ended with one man behind bars. David Eugene Hosmun, 31, of Daleville, was arrested June 6 on charges of Making Terroristic Threats 1st Degree and Disorderly Conduct.

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  32. JNB Services journeys from kitchen table to grand opening in Daleville

    By Travis Parker

    JNB Services recently celebrated its grand opening at new, much larger facilities with a short welcoming ceremony, refreshments, and a Special Award for a valued Team Member. The gathering highlighted the commitment of the rapidly growing company to excellence and teamwork. The event provided a perfect opportunity to recognize and appreciate one of their outstanding team members, James Jones, the Senior Project Manager and Engineer.

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  33. Council gives library a budget boost

    By Caitlyn Cummings

    The Ozark City Council met on June 4 to discuss important topics affecting the city. Led by Ozark Dale County Library Board of Trustees Treasurer Christina Faulkner's detailed presentation on the library budget, the council talked about how to spend money on various city needs. They also made decisions about city projects, grants, and appointing new people to city committees. This meeting also covered leasing a hangar, getting grants for city projects, and deciding where to put a historical tank.

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  34. Four celebrate 133 years of postal service with journey along Retirement Way

    By Christina Faulkner

    Four Ozark Post Office employees retired on May 31, marking the end of a combined 133 years of dedicated service and the beginning of their journey down Retirement Way. Postmaster David Kochanski, Supervisor Joan Ellis, and carriers Rickey Outlaw and John Simpson were honored at a retirement party at El Palacio’s, with over 40 colleagues, family, and friends celebrating their achievements.

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  35. Council revokes motel’s license, resulting in eviction of homeless

    By Caitlyn Cummings

    During a meeting of the Ozark City Council held on May 21, a public hearing took place to determine if the business license for the Days Inn, located on Highway 231, should be revoked. The business has a long history of fire code violations and safety issues. The City of Ozark, represented by city attorney Joe W. Adams, and the owner of the Days Inn, Drew Shah, presented their cases to the City Council.

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  36. Ozark to unveil Safe Haven Baby Box

    By Christina Faulkner

    The City of Ozark will hold a special ceremony to unveil and bless the newly installed Safe Haven Baby Box at Fire Station No. 3, located at 100 Mixon School Road. The event is scheduled for June 24 at 2:00 p.m., and the community is invited to attend this significant occasion.

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  37. Sex offender nabbed in Notasulga after two-day evasion

    By Christina Faulkner

    A Daleville man charged with first-degree rape and first-degree sodomy is being held in the Dale County Jail after being arrested in Macon County on Sunday, May 2. Colt Bryan Lecuyer, 33, eluded law enforcement for two days after Ozark-Dale County E-911 operators received a disturbing call from a Level Plains resident reporting a witnessed sexual assault involving a young child under the age of 10 on Friday, May 31.

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  38. Sunday at the Crossroads highlights Dale County’s musical talents

    By Caitlyn Cummings

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  39. Ft. Novosel honors fallen heroes with Memorial Day remembrance ceremony

    By Travis Parker

    Ft. Novosel got a head start on the Memorial Day weekend by honoring those who lost their lives in the defense of freedom with their version of the Remembrance Ceremony on Thursday, May 23. This annual event, deeply rooted in history and tradition, was a poignant reminder of the sacrifices made by countless servicemen and women.

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  40. Wiregrass area commemorates Memorial Day with honors and tributes

    By Travis Parker

    Many events and ceremonies were held in the Wiregrass area to honor Memorial Day. In the City of Daleville the Second Annual Memorial Day Ceremony was held, organized by Southeast Alabama AMVETS Post 7. Daleville City Councilwoman Jo Reese opened the ceremony with a welcome, followed by State AMVETS Chaplain John Logsdon delivering the opening invocation.

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  41. Academic success forged by cousin valedictorians

    By Christina Faulkner

    It’s a rare and extraordinary feat when cousins from different schools achieve the coveted title of valedictorian in the same year. Jesse D. Dyson from Northside Methodist Academy and Andrew Fletcher Dyson, Jr. from Long High School have accomplished just that, making waves in their respective communities with their outstanding academic achievements.

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  42. From Top Ten Graduate to History Scholar

    By Christina Faulkner

    Alyssa Kaitlyn Allen, a graduate of G.W. Long High School's Class of 2018 Top Ten, embodies the spirit of excellence fostered in Dale County. With an unwavering passion for history that ignited during her elementary years, Allen's academic trajectory has been characterized by a relentless pursuit of knowledge and a commitment to scholarly inquiry.

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  43. Daleville graduate makes school history

    By Christina Faulkner

    LaShundra Latrese Straw made history at Daleville High School by graduating with her college degree before even walking the stage to receive her high school diploma. Straw graduated from Enterprise State Community College on May 9 and received her high school diploma on May 17. Her remarkable achievements are a testament to her dedication and hard work, culminating in her being named valedictorian of her senior class.

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  44. Carroll High School graduates 150 seniors

    By Christina Faulkner

    Carroll High School celebrated the graduation of 150 seniors at the Ozark Civic Center on Friday, May 17. The ceremony was marked by inspiring speeches and recognition of achievements.

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  45. G.W. Long FFA Banquet celebrates achievements

    By Christina Faulkner

    The G.W. Long FFA held its annual banquet earlier this month, celebrating a year of remarkable achievements and recognizing the contributions of its members. With a history of success at both the district and state levels, the chapter continued its tradition of excellence, earning several top awards this year.

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