WCHS Network | News • Sports • Business | Charleston, WVLocal News | WCHS Network | News • Sports • Business | Charleston, WV
CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A total of 57 blocks of emergency stopping material will have to be replaced at Charleston’s Yeager Airport after a small plane landed short of the runway on the night of September 4th, a damage report has shown.
Terry Sayre, the director of Yeager Airport, said the EMAS system — made up of foam blocks — worked properly during the emergency situation.
EMAS stands for engineered materials arrestor system.
“The first part of the damage occurred at the end of the EMAS bed where the plane impacted the bed and skidded about 100 feet into the EMAS bed and came to rest at about a 30 degree angle,” Sayre said.
“We credit this with saving another life, definitely.”
Inspectors with Safran, the EMAS manufacturer, visited the airport on Friday, September 6th to survey the damage.
The damage report from the company was returned last week but did not include a projected cost for repairs, according to Miller.
Sayre said he was hoping to have that before this Wednesday’s meeting of the Yeager Airport Board.
In addition to the EMAS repair costs, “We incurred lots of other costs for the emergency response, the recovery of the aircraft. We had probably at least 20 employees here that night working along with the Air Guard, fire department, wrecker service.”
No commercial flights were affected and the stopping system itself is still usable.
“There’s 200-some feet towards the runway and all around where this plane just marred the tops the blocks, but they’re still intact and functional,” Sayre said.
The pilot walked away from the problem landing without any injuries.
It happened less than a month after a rebuilding of the EMAS system was completed at Yeager Airport following a 2015 hillside collapse.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A man who was shot while driving a car on Charleston’s West Side Saturday night later died, according to Charleston Police.
Investigators said the shooting occurred at 10:40 p.m. near the intersection of Glenwood Avenue and 7th Street.
The driver wrecked the car after being shot.
Another man in the car took off running.
As of Sunday morning, no names of the people involved had been released and no arrests had been made.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The first of the fall clean-ups from the Kanawha County Commission will be held on Saturday.
The location is in the Sissonville area.
From 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., residents can drop off unwanted items from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. off the Tuppers Creek Exit of I-77 on Call Road near the Sissonville Volunteer Fire Department.
Items that’ll be collected include tires, appliances and electronics.
Some items, though, are not eligible for the dropoff including gas and propane tanks, paint, chemicals, motor oil and other hazardous materials.
Two other clean-up events are planned for elsewhere in Kanawha County later this fall.
PUTNAM COUNTY, W.Va. — No injuries were reported in a fire Friday afternoon in the Hurricane area.
The fire was reported before 3:30 p.m. on Sycamore Road.
Firefighters from the Hurricane, Teays Valley and Culloden fire departments responded to the scene.
One person was at the residence at the time.
The cause of the fire is not known. The blaze started in the lower level of the home.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The former mayor of Charleston says he thinks his oldest son needs to go back to jail.
On his talk show, Friday’s “580-LIVE” on 580-WCHS, an emotional Danny Jones told his listeners his son, Zachary Jones, nearly overdosed on heroin last weekend while on parole.
“He was caught in his car with the car running and all of the paraphernalia and everything on his lap and he and his girlfriend were in the car and they were ODing and they were dying, basically,” Jones said.
“Somebody reported it and paramedics came and took them to the hospital.”
Jones said his son’s parole should be revoked.
“You say, ‘Well, that’s not the long-term answer.’ Well, I get that. I know this pretty well. I’ve been down this road for a long time with this young man,” he said.
“The only thing I’m saying is is that what I’m trying to do is keep him alive through Christmas.”
Zachary Jones is now 30 and has a list of arrests on his record, including DUI and drug possession, largely connected to substance use and was only recently released from prison.
Up until last week, he had been working.
Over the years, Zachary Jones and his father has been open about his struggles with addiction.
“What might save Zac is to put him back in prison. Put him back,” Jones said.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The downtown Charleston YMCA will cease operations on Oct. 4.
The change comes because of a lack of revenue and lower membership.
The Quarrier Street location opened in August 2018.
Swimming lessons will continue at the building until Oct. 25. People will current memberships will be able to use the fitness center, classes and services at the Hillcrest Drive location.
NITRO, W.Va. — Nitro Boomtown Days, the annual festival recognizing the city’s history and its residents, begins Friday, but the weekend celebration kicked off Thursday evening with the premiere of a new video on the city.
“A Day in the Life of Nitro” shows pictures residents took over 24 hours on Aug. 1.
“It shows all of our wonderful people, and it captures all of the great activities there are in Nitro,” Nitro Mayor Dave Casebolt said. “We have accomplished exactly what we wanted to accomplish in this video, and it’s to show people what it is like in Nitro in one day. I’m very happy with it.”
Casebolt said more than 1,000 pictures were submitted, and they tried to include all of the submissions.
“We had set out for this video to be about three minutes long, and it ended up being about five minutes long,” he said. “It’s very interesting, and it keeps you attracted to it.”
Boomtown Days begins with a “Cruz in” Friday evening at Living Memorial Park starting at 5 p.m.
The city will also unveil an art print showing multiple sites in the city, such as a World War I soldier and Ridenour Lake.
“People are very excited about Nitro’s heritage, and there’s just a lot of pride in general whether it’s school pride or hometown pride,” said Kim Reed, the executive director of the Nitro Development Authority.
Other Boomtown Day activities include the Tudor’s Doughboy 5K, which begins at 8 a.m. Saturday starting at 21st Street and Second Avenue. A parade is scheduled for Saturday at 10 a.m., which is themed around “All Things Nitro.” The parade begins at First Avenue and ends at 21st Street.
INSTITUTE, W.Va. — Words could not describe how Fred D. Thomas Jr. felt Thursday on the campus of West Virginia State University.
Thomas Jr., a 1950 WVSU alumnus, had the institution’s education learning center dedicated and named after him in front of his peers.
The current Charlotte, North Carolina native made a significant financial contribution to WVSU in 2018 to establish a high-tech learning center for students in the education department.
Thomas Jr. said it was an easy choice to give back to the university.
“West Virginia State gave me so much,” he said to the media. “It opened up my life so I could help boys and girls move forward, get a job, raise a family, and those kinds of things.”
Thomas Jr. was born in Abingdon, Virginia and raised Pulaski, Virginia before coming to WVSU after serving in World War II.
He graduated from WVSU with a bachelor’s degree in biology, followed by a master’s degree in education from New York University. From there, Thomas Jr. served as a middle school science teacher and curriculum coordinator for 35 years for the West Babylon School District on Long Island.
“I came to West Virginia State as a naive country guy and got an excellent education,” he said.
“If they can do that for me, why not me do something that would help others.”
WVSU President Anthony L. Jenkins, WVSU Education Department Chair Patricia Wilson and WVSU education students Deja Smoot and Isaac Cosby all had remarks in front of a packed center.
The center is located on the sixth floor of Wallace Hall and features tools such as state of the art computers, smart televisions, more learning space, and renovated classrooms.
Story by Jake Flatley
CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Friday marks a decade since a Charleston Police officer was killed in the line of duty.
“I was actually a detective at the time and was called out that night,” remembered Sgt. Doug Paxton, now the chaplain for Charleston Police, about the night Patrolman Jerry A. Jones died.
Patrolman Jerry Jones
“It was chaotic. It was shocking. You remember the feeling that you had that we’ve lost one of our brothers and there’s no way to really describe that.”
On Sept. 13, 2009, another officer accidentally shot Patrolman Jones in gunfire after a high-speed pursuit that ended with a suspect using his pickup truck to ram multiple police cruisers.
The suspect, Brian Good, was killed.
At the time, Jones was 27 and had been with the department for three years.
“It’s just hard to believe it’s been ten years already,” Paxton said of Jones’ death.
On Friday morning, he and others, including Jones’ mother, Beverly Jones, and Charleston Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin, were scheduled to be part of an 8:30 a.m. memorial ceremony at the Charleston Police Training Facility, 917 Quarrier Street.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Two local high school teams will enjoy a whole new experience during this Friday’s football games.
Both Sissonville High School and Riverside High School will play at home on newly-installed artificial turf. They are the first of the county’s high schools to have the surface installed.
Chuck Smith, executive director of facilities and plannning for Kanawha County Schools, said these two schools were selected to be first because playing conditions on site were so bad.
“They were horrible. Halfway through the season they became mud pits,” Smith explained “Just over time with wear and tear and use of the fields, the field just couldn’t take it.”
Kanawha County voters approved the purchase of the turf for the county school football fields, something Smith said was important for not only sports activities, but for the safety of children.
“All citizens of Kanawha County benefit from this and we thought it was imperative that all students get a share of it. They’re all equal in our eyes,” he said.
“The studies we’ve seen show the injury rate on a turf field is much less than it is on a grass field.”
Now that the work is completed at Sissonville and Riverside, attention will turn next to five other schools in the county.
Installation comes next for Nitro, St. Albans, George Washinggton, and South Charleston in that order.
Those will be installed starting in the spring and will be ready for next fall.
Since Capital plays at Laidley Field, their school will get a soccer field on the campus turfed, if the funding remains available.
Herbert Hoover will get a turf field once the new school is built.
Smith said the new campus will include a new sports stadium in Elkview to replace Joe Tolley Field at Hanging Rock.
The county cut a good deal with the company which is installing the turf, according to Smith.
“We’ve got a 12-year warranty on this thing and typically they are only warranted for 10, plus we’ve got a maintenance agreement in place,” he said.