The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

Morenci Fire Dept. evaluating used aerial truck 6.24.09

Written by David Green.

Morenci residents might spot a strange fire truck in town this week as fire department members take a look at Archbold’s used aerial truck.

The Archbold department recently bought a remanufactured aerial unit for $650,000 and are trying to find a home for their 1975 truck. Their fire chief hopes the truck will be purchased by another department in the area, making it available for mutual aid calls.

Morenci chief Chad Lonis told city council members Monday there are at least 40 houses and 25 commercial buildings tall enough to use the services of the truck’s 85-foot platform. The pump has a greater capacity than the city’s other fire trucks.

Lonis said the offer was “dropped in our lap pretty fast” and department members haven’t yet had an opportunity to evaluate the  potential purchase.

Department member Jeff Ort said he isn’t convinced the purchase would be a wise investment, but his mind might change by the end of the week. Similarly, Lonis said his favorable position might change by the time the truck is returned.

Council member Keith Pennington expressed concern about annual maintenance, inspection and training costs. He noted that Archbold spent $25,000 in refurbishing the truck few years ago.

The truck has traveled only 10,000 miles and been put in service 135 hours in 34 years, Pennington said, and that suggests that it isn’t used very often. He wonders if the four other aerial trucks in the area would be sufficient to serve Morenci via mutual aid.

Lonis said the department will consider whether it has sufficient manpower  to operate the truck and whether it can handle the costs involved.

EMS CALLS—Councilor Tracy Schell said that due to state regulations, fire department members will stop serving as first responders to aid the EMS service. Members will continue to help when summoned by the EMS, but not as the first responder.

The situation might change in the future.

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