(BEDFORD) – Lawrence County Veterans Service Officer Brad Bough says his department has secured more than $110 million in veteran benefits for Lawrence County veterans in the five years he has been over the program.
“The veteran population in Lawrence County is decreasing but our gross domestic expenditures are going up,” he added.
Bough and the commissioners have met with Congressman Trey Hollingsworth with hopes of having a VA hospital built in Southern Indiana.
“Currently veterans have to travel to Indianapolis or Louisville for treatment,” Bough added.
Bough has also met with Hollingsworth to make D-Day a legal holiday this year.
“This is the 70th anniversary on the battle of Normandy,” he added.
During World War II (1939-1945), the Battle of Normandy, which lasted from June 1944 to August 1944, resulted in the Allied liberation of Western Europe from Nazi Germany’s control. Codenamed Operation Overlord, the battle began on June 6, 1944, also known as D-Day, when some 156,000 American, British and Canadian forces landed on five beaches along a 50-mile stretch of the heavily fortified coast of France’s Normandy region.
The invasion was one of the largest amphibious military assaults in history and required extensive planning. Prior to D-Day, the Allies conducted a large-scale deception campaign designed to mislead the Germans about the intended invasion target. By late August 1944, all of northern France had been liberated, and by the following spring, the Allies had defeated the Germans. The Normandy landings have been called the beginning of the end of the war in Europe.
Plans are still being made for the 75th-anniversary celebration of D-Day at the courthouse on June 6 at 11 a.m.
“We want to recognize the men and women of the greatest generation,” Bough says.
Bough says James Lee Hutchinson, who was a Technical Sergeant in the U.S. Air Force after going to radio school to be a radio specialist and gunner in the B-17 Flying Fortress during World War II is in charge of the celebration.
Bough and the veterans would like to share what the times, rations, music and the important women in the workforce – Rosie the Riveters.
The group is looking for volunteers to help with the event.
“It would be great to get a Rosie here, to have scouts help with the event and maybe even a music group to perform big band music,” Bough says.
Anyone that is wanting to be a part of the celebration can contact Brad Bough at the Veterans Affair Office at 812-275-6411.
In other business, the commissioners opened four bids for sewer grinders for the jail. The bids were taken under advisement.
Lawrence County inmates have been flushing wrappers from items purchased from commissary, clothing and other items down the toilets at the jail thus clogging the city’s sewer lines.
The county is taking steps to stop the lines from being clogged by installing grinders in the sewer systems to address the problem.
Sheriff Mike Branham
Sheriff Mike Branham says the blockage has occurred several times this year and many times the blockage has been found blocks away from the jail, causing lines to back up in area businesses and homes.
The commissioners approve RQAW Corporation to oversee the project. Once a bid is accepted, the project should take about six months to complete.
Lawrence County Sheriff Mike Branham says there are 155 inmates in the jail this morning, of those 36 were females, 8 Level 6 offenders and one Department of Correction hold and three parole holds.
“We averaged around 150 inmates a day during the month of April,” Sheriff Branham added.
Assessor April Collins praised her employees for a job well done Tuesday morning.
Collins suffered a heart issue on December 31 and had emergency surgery. She was out of her office for four months recovering.
“I must commend my staff,” she added. “When I returned it was as if I had not been gone a day. They were amazing.”
Those staff members are Deloris Watterson, Cheryl Blackwell, Cheryl Wigley, Ann Hillenburg, Lori Fiscus, and Emilee Elliott.
The commissioner approved to close the west side of the Courthouse parking lot on May 22 for the Colts Fun Fest.
Colts players Denico Autry and G Quenton Nelson and four Colt cheerleaders will greet fans from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. at Harp Commons. The players will be showing up by helicopter and Blue the Colt’s mascot will arrive by limo.
Come enjoy autographs and photos with Colts players, cheerleaders and mascot Blue, and a free concert from Clayton Anderson, Colts interactive inflatables and more.
Lawrence County Highway Superintendent David Holmes says crews are preparing for the paving season. Crews are laying culverts and edging roads.
Bridge crews have been busying washing and clearing out brush and debris from county bridges.
Lawrence County Emergency Management Director Valerie Luchauer says she attended an earthquake training in French Lick.
She is also working on updating policies and procedures for the county and planning a chemical exercise at GM Bedford Plant for May 10th. GM was chosen because of the chemicals they use in their plant.
“This will be a transport incident,” she added.