Daily Archives: March 15, 2013
by marlys good
It was Thursday, Feb. 7 and Greybull High School alum Audrey Hunt Schuyler and friends, Rose Ann Austin and Lana McCullar, had nothing on their minds except packing for the cruise they were to take the next day. Closets to rummage through and suitcases to pack.
But the best laid plans went awry when the three Citizen Volunteers with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Office were called out about 5 p.m. to help search for a 21-year-old female motorcycle rider from Arkansas, Ally Baum, who left the camping area riding her off-road motorcycle about 9 a.m., ran out of gas and was awaiting rescue.
About 70 fellow motorcyclists, including her boyfriend, had been searching since 9:30 a.m. with no luck and finally called the sheriff’s department at 1 p.m. A deputy responded, talked to her on a cell phone (Ally’s phone was not fully charged). According to the official report, Ally said she “was in a desert area near some railroad racks near a possible mile post marker of 143. The deputy told her to stay put; they would find her. Ally’s phone went dead right after that call.
Aided by maps, they narrowed the search to the west side of Red Mountain Road. The motorcyclists, deputies, Search & Rescue volunteers and a Navy Black Hawk helicopter had been searching the area where they thought she would be over and over again.
Audrey said, “Because they had searched the west side pretty thoroughly, we acted on a hunch (or women’s intuition) and asked if we could search the east side of Red Mountain Road.
“We had our amber lights going, honked the horn as we went and then would stop to listen for her. We stopped to look at some markings in the dirt and were calling her name, when Ally started hollering back, ‘I’m here; don’t leave. I’m here.’
“We followed her voice as she was walking out to meet us.” This was at approximately 9 p.m. The stranded rider was “cold, tired, thirsty and a bit scared.”
Audrey said the day had started out nice, but turned cold and windy. Ally wore boots, pants and a motorcycle jersey and had sought shelter in some rocks to get out of the wind. “We were wearing sweatshirts, coats, gloves and hats and were still cold. We turned the heat up high, gave her our coats and bottled water and radioed to let everyone know we had found her.
“We were all pretty excited to have been the ones to find her and, very tongue in cheek, decided we were ‘sheros.’
“We teased the deputies about the definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.”
It was not tongue in cheek when Audrey pointed out the young rider had “done so many things wrong … not riding with a buddy, not having the appropriate gear, not being sure her bike was full of gas, not letting someone know where she was riding, and not having a charged cell phone.”
The three friends went home, packed and “pretty much didn’t sleep because we were so pumped,” Hunt said.
Audrey, who is married to Don Schuyler, is the daughter of Mavis Hunt of Greybull.
Jabs, uppercuts and hooks are the language of his sport of choice, but it is a baseball term that best describes what William Pires did Monday night while working at the Overland Express Mart in Greybull.
Dusty Hill, a physician at South Big Horn Hospital, credits Pires with the “save” of the year for his quick response when a customer collapsed inside the convenience store, lost consciousness and had his heart stop beating.
As of Tuesday afternoon, the customer, whose name is unknown, was still clinging to life in a Billings hospital, according to Dr. Hill. He described the man as “a Native American,” likely a resident of New Mexico, and with the appearance of someone who was “down and out.”
The fact that he even made it to Billings was nothing short of a miracle, Hill said, crediting not only Pires but also the on-duty Greybull police officer, Sean Alquist — who responded to the call and stayed with patient even through his time in the ER — with saving the man’s life.
Pires, an aspiring boxer, is from the East Coast, having spent half his life in the Boston area, the other half in New York. He has only lived in Wyoming for about a year. Before joining the Overland team a few months ago, he worked as a baker at the Maverik and doing miscellaneous work at the Greybull Motel.
Pires said he was working behind the counter, preparing food for customers, when he noticed the bus arrive. One of the men from the bus eventually made it over to the store’s food court. It was there, at that moment, that Pires noticed that the man “wasn’t stable.” In fact, he said a friend who was next in line had to help him place his order.
Pires said he continued to watch the man struggle as he made his way over to the cash register, and then begin walking toward the bathroom. He never made it that far, collapsing a few feet from the men’s room door.
Pires immediately left his station to be at the man’s side. He tended to him while a co-worker at the counter called for an ambulance. Pires said he later took the phone and spoke directly with dispatch, informing the person on the other end of the man’s condition.
From past experience, Pires recognized that the man was having a seizure. “His arms started shaking…he was foaming at the mouth,” he said.
His initial concern was getting the man to stop. “He’d been seizuring for about a minute and a half and he was biting his tongue the whole time,” Pires said. “I took one of the rags we use, a clean one, and went to his mouth to try to jar it open and get his tongue back in there.
“After I did that, I turned him over on his side and just stayed there with him.” Pires said he used another stack of towels as a pillow to prop the man’s head up. The rest of the time, Pires stayed with the man, monitoring his condition and breathing pattern.
At one point, which he estimated to last around 40 seconds, he was unable to detect a pulse. Pires said he was contemplating CPR when the man’s heartbeat returned. Pires said all he did to get it restarted was “tapping him on the chest.”
Eventually ambulance crews arrived and took over the scene. The man was transported to the South Big Horn Hospital emergency room, where Dr. Hill took over. The man “had no pulse and his pupils weren’t responding to light.” Hill said he immediately feared that he and the ER team wouldn’t be able to bring the man back.
“We were getting no response from his heart,” said Hill. “We did CPR for five to six minutes gave him three rounds of Epernepheren. I said to everyone around me, ‘This is hopeless,’ and that if everybody was OK with stopping it, I was going to give it one more round.
“I gave one final dose of Epinepheren, we did CPR and checked his pulse again, for about the 10th time, and I got a faint pulse in the right femeral artery. I felt it again…it was very faint, and very sporadic, but it was there.”
The man’s condition gradually improved, to the point where he could be transported, via LifeFlight, to a hospital in Billings.
“Nobody here could believe it,” said Hill. “Heck, I couldn’t believe it. I’ve only seen this happen once in 18 years.”
Hill explained that a pH on the man’s blood was 6.87 upon arrival, and that the chances of making it 12 hours after having a pH that low is “less than 1 percent.” Yet as of Tuesday afternoon, the man was still fighting in a Billings hospital. “I’ve never pulled one out from that far gone,” Hill said.
Hill said Pires “started the whole thing off” with his heroic actions and by doing “all the right things.” He said Alquist deserves a lot of credit as well, noting that ER personnel put him to work and that he stayed there for a good two-plus hours. “What he did was awesome, too,” Hill said.
When informed Tuesday afternoon that the man was still alive, Pires pumped his fist.
How did he know what to do?
“I’ve been through a lot,” he said.
Pires said he has a friend with epilepsy and worked with a lot of cognitivite patients while employed by a mental institution as a youth.
“I was trained in how to handle it as a kid … and I guess instinct just kicked in,” he said of his response to the crisis. He added that his co-workers at Overland also performed well, taking care of customers both in the food court and at the counter, while he was with the man.
Pires said he doesn’t know what the future holds for him. He admits that he didn’t plan to stay here long and misses his family back East. But at the same time, Greybull and Wyoming have grown on him.
“I don’t miss having to wear a bulletproof vest or worrying about wearing the wrong colors,” he said. “I’m at peace out here, which is very therapeutic. I hear birds when I wake up instead of sirens.”
Pires doesn’t know where his boxing career will take him. It’s just something he enjoys. He’s been fighting in Golden Gloves amateur bouts, and while doesn’t know his record, he’s certain he’s won more than he’s lost. In fact, he said he hopes to make his pro debut later this year.
by nathan oster
Ross Jorgensen, who for six years served as the town’s public works director, was appointed to the Greybull Town Council Monday night, ending an at times contentious internal struggle over who would complete the remaining two years of Bob Graham’s four-year term.
Jorgensen’s appointment, which was approved by a unanimous vote, capped a 45-minute discussion in which the council failed to agree on the appointment of Dave Havener and refused to put to a vote the appointments of either Rod Collingwood or Lindsey Casey.
The council had decided the fate of a fifth candidate, Les Lowe, in January. The third-place finisher in the November general election, Lowe failed to get a majority of the council votes, as he received the backing of both Clay Collingwood and Myles Foley, but was opposed by Mayor Bob Graham and Bob McGuire. Three votes were needed to win the appointment, and because he had gone to a vote, he could not be brought up for another vote.
Monday’s discussion picked up where the one in January ended, with McGuire and Graham pushing for Foley or Collingwood to second a motion made initially by McGuire in January to appoint Rod Collingwood. Graham emphasized that a second from either of them wouldn’t constitute agreement, but rather that it would be a step toward bringing Collingwood’s appointment to a vote and thus, giving him his “due process.”
Graham opened the discussion with a prepared statement. He apologized again for not being prepared for the impasse that occurred, but said he had consulted a variety of people and legal documents since that special meeting — state, county and municipal officials as well as numerous attorneys, including the town’s own counsel, Scott McColloch.
The consensus, he said, “was that we, as a council, have the responsibility, the obligation, the duty to fill the vacant position,” and that the council had agreed during the first meeting of the new year — with McGuire motioning and Foley seconding — to seek letters of interest from community members rather than simply appointing the next-highest vote getter from the general election.
Graham said that wouldn’t be as clear cut as it may seem, noting that while Lowe was, in fact, the third-highest vote getter in the race last fall for the expiring seats of Kay Fleek and Jan Johnson, Art Moser was actually the third-highest vote getter for the seat that Graham vacated to take over as mayor. In the general election of 2010, when voters elected Graham and McGuire, Moser ran a very strong third, finishing just two votes (343-341) behind McGuire for the second seat. Graham was the top vote getter in that election.
After Graham finished his rehash of the January meeting, Councilor Collingwood asked Moser, who was seated in the audience, if he filled out a letter of interest. Moser said he did not do so — and was not interested in filling the vacant seat.
That brought the council back to the final four candidates. Pressed once again to offer a second to the motion of appointing Rod Collingwood, Foley said he decided in January that he could not support him and that he was going to stand by that decision.
“Gentlemen, I have a question,” said McGuire, addressing Foley and Collingwood “By rules, we should at least get it to a vote; that’s when you decide. From what Mr. Graham said, he’s simply asking that every candidate be given the same consideration (as Lowe received).”
That, he said, would be a motion and a second, followed by discussion and a vote.
“At that point, when the vote is cast, same as what happened with Mr. Lowe, if doesn’t pass, we take the next one up.”
Graham added, “It’s only fair … that we give them all the same process we afforded Mr. Lowe, and with respect to the fact that these people are our constituents, they voted us into office, and we should give them the opportunity to be put up for a vote.”
Councilman Collingwood questioned the fairness of that, but after being assured by McColloch that he could also offer up a motion if he didn’t like McGuire’s, Collingwood took the first step toward a compromise
Collingwood motioned, and got a second from Foley, to appoint Dave Havener, the pastor of the Greybull Alliance Church.
Foley and Collingwood had refused to consider Havener in January.
“From listening to Dave, I now think he’d be a good choice,” said Foley. “I like his opinions, his ideas, his personality.”
Collingwood agreed, saying, “He’s a good choice.”
McGuire wouldn’t go as far. Instead he emphasized the qualifications of both Rod Collingwood and Jorgensen, which he believed exceeded those of Havener. In addition, he stated that he had a conversation with Havener after the January meeting.
“I told him I believe he has a value to the community in his current position as a minister of religion, and that being on the council could create fractions within his congregation,” McGuire said. “I told him I have more value in him being where he is than in causing problems, and as we visited, he seemed to agree with that.”
Councilor Collingwood said he got a different sense from Havener. “I don’t have the same opinion as you,” he said.
McGuire concluded, “I can’t support Mr. Havener when there are two other candidates who are much more qualified to work for the council and would be more effective to the community at large.”
Havener was the only one of the four remaining candidates who didn’t attend Monday’s meeting, and while Foley admitted, “I wish he’d be here tonight,” he stuck with his support for Havener, as did Collingwood, who said the question of whether there’d be a conflict with his congregation was for Havener and not McGuire to decide.
Before it went to a vote, Casey walked to the podium and asked Collingwood and Foley what had changed since January, when they wouldn’t support Havener.
“Two months of thinking about it,” said Collingwood.
Added Foley, “I originally had (Lowe) in mind, but after think about it for the past month, and what Mr. Havener would bring, I have changed my mind.”
Collingwood said he, too, wanted Lowe, but admitted that he hadn’t considered the case for Moser.
When it was put to a vote, Collingwood and Foley voted in favor of Havener; McGuire and Graham opposed. Like Lowe, Havener failed to receive the three votes needed, which ended his candidacy.
Reached Tuesday, Havener said church business prevented him from attending the meeting. “I wish I would have been there,” he said, adding that he “probably would have accepted” had the vote have gone differently.
“The way I approached it was, if the Lord wants this to happen, it’s going to happen,” he said. “I wanted to be involved in our community and thought it was one way that I could contribute.”
When informed of Jorgensen’s appointment, Havener said he was “not worried in the least,” saying he felt Jorgensen was one of, if not the most qualified of all the applicants in the field.
Now down to three candidates, the council shifted gears again. McGuire said he had some of the same questions as Casey. He reiterated that his goal from the start was to appoint someone better than him, who would “bring something to the table” and make the council better.
“I’m not sure what you two have decided to use for your criteria, but I’m left with some questions,” said McGuire. “If this were an open job application, I’d take the most qualified candidate, and quite frankly, I haven’t seen that from either one of you.
“For whatever reason, I can’t get a second and (move Rod Collingwood) to the discussion phase. If I’m forced into it, I’ll make a motion we accept Ross Jorgensen. That’ll be my motion.”
After a long pause, in which neither Foley nor Collingwood responded, McGuire turned to the two and said, “Gentlemen, I’ve got a question. I’ve made two motions. What agenda is out there? What is your criteria for making this selection. I’m calling you both out.”
Foley reiterated his belief that the third runner-up, Lowe, should be the choice, but was quickly reminded by McGuire that that is no longer an option — and that the council had only three remaining candidates: Collingwood, Jorgensen and Casey.
Foley discounted Casey, saying she has “a conflict of interest” and that it’s an obvious one (her husband Brent is a Greybull police officer) — but McGuire countered, “it’s not obvious; we haven’t discussed it.
McGuire added, “This is an open meeting. We are on record. Do you gentlemen want someone on this council who is qualified?”
Turning to McGuire, Collingwood responded, “Who are you to say who is qualified and who isn’t? You are making your own opinions, I am making mine.”
“But these are our choices,” said McGuire. “There are no more letters of interest. This is it. I can back up my choices and decisions. We’re not getting anywhere here and I want to know why?”
“I made a motion (for who should be appointed) based on what was fair,” said Collingwood, a point later echoed by Foley.
McGuire continued to press for a second of his motion for Jorgensen, and after a long delay, expressed frustration. “My perception is that for whatever reason, you don’t want Mr. Jorgensen, Mr. Collingwood or Mrs. Casey on the council.”
Collingwood eventually seconded the motion for Jorgensen, saying he was doing so “in the interest of going through the procedure.” In the discussion phase, McGuire cited Jorgensen’s “understanding of the inner workings of the town and his skill level,” while Graham pointed out that Jorgensen volunteered his time last month helping Town Clerk Kathy Smith fill out an application for funding for a water project.
“Ross was able to help in getting it prepared and sent off, and that kind of dedication to this community means a lot. If that’s not a qualification to sit on this council, then I question what is.”
Before he was put to a vote, Jorgensen was asked why, at the January meeting, he had pulled his letter of interest. Earlier in Monday’s meeting, Graham was asked how Jorgensen could still be a candidate because of that, and the mayor stated that his withdrawal was never acted upon by the council.
Jorgensen had said in January that he was pulling his application because he wanted to throw his support behind Collingwood’s candidacy, feeling he was most qualified for the job. He reiterated that Monday night, saying, “I didn’t want to see a stalemate. It isn’t good for our community.
“I just wanted the council to pick someone — because a council of four, two and two without a tiebreaker, doesn’t serve the best interest of our community.
When Mayor Graham called for a vote, all four hands went up in the air, and moments later, Jorgensen was sworn into office.
by nathan oster
The newest member of the Greybull Town Council said he was “surprised” by his appointment but is looking forward to serving the community.
“I think we have the makings of a good council,” said Ross Jorgensen, who ultimately emerged as the council’s unanimous choice to complete the final 21 months of the four-year term that Bob Graham was elected to serve in 2010.
Jorgensen was sworn into office and joined the council on Monday night.
In his letter of interest, Jorgensen noted that he has lived in the community for over 15 years and cited 28 total years of experience “working for and with local, state and federal government agencies.”
Jorgensen served as the town’s public works director for six years (1997-2003). During his tenure, he not only oversaw daily operations of the department, but also wrote and secured an 85 percent grant from SLIB for an 11-block sewer line replacement project and a 50 percent grant/50 percent loan to do another 11 blocks of sewer line replacement.
Jorgensen is currently employed by the Wyoming Association of Rural Water Systems as a circuit rider. He has held the position for the past 5 ½ years. It entails providing training and technical assistance to water and wastewater operations specialists in the areas of system operations and repair, Wyoming DEQ and US EPA reguluatory requirements.
“I assist town and district clerks with loan/grant applications, water and sewer rate analysis and policies and procedures required by state and federal agencies,” he wrote in his letter of interest. “Along with other staff members, I provide board training for town council and district board members in the areas of statutory requirements, construction planning and design review and budgeting.”
In addition to serving as the town’s public works director, Jorgensen also worked as a project manager in the construction of the Washakie Rural I&SD water system which consisted of the installation of 82 miles of water lines and service connections. Jorgensen’s letter also states that he “worked closely with the district board and Wyoming Water Development, USDA Rural Development and the Wyoming State Lands and Investments Board, which funded the $17 million project through grants and loans.”
As for his qualifications for the vacancy, Jorgensen noted in his letter that the town has come a long way in upgrading infrastructure, but that much work remains. “I am certain there is quite a bit of cost cutting that can be done in the area of planning work that can be done in house instead of paying $125-plus per hour consulting fees to an engineering firm.
“The more that the council and staff is involved in the planning, the more we fully understand what to expect for the dollars we spend and we get the product we want and not what an engineer thinks we should get.
“I believe that my experience will serve to help in the yearly budgeting process that has revenue fluctuating every year. Increasing regulatory requirements continue to burden our shrinking budgets. Out of necessity, we need to keep the reserve funds up to get us through the rough times.”
Ross and his wife Elaine have two grown children, Erik and Erin, both of whom attended and graduated from Greybull High School.
Dorothy A. Kimbro, formerly of Basin and Greybull, died Thursday, March 7, 2013, in Kingwood, Texas.
She was born in Longmont, Colorado, March 7, 1929, the oldest daughter of Gus and Helen (Higgins) Abrams. She was raised on the family farm between Loveland and Berthoud attending schools in Campion and Loveland, graduating from Loveland High School in 1946. She attended Colorado Women’s College in Denver, Colo., before transferring to Colorado A & M (now Colorado State University University) in Fort, Collins, Colo. There she met K. Russell Kimbro and they were married Jan. 23, 1949. They made their home in Shell, Wyo., living and working on the family farm until 1959, when they purchased Horn’s Home Furnishings in Greybull. After I was destroyed by fire in 1964, they purchased the Reilly Motel which they operated as the K-Bar Motel until her retirement in 1992. They moved to Basin in 1999 where she resided until Nov. 2012 when she moved to Kingwood, Texas, to be closer to her son, Dave.
Dorothy was an accomplished musician, serving as organist and pianist for the First Presbyterian Church in Greybull and the Shell Community Church in Shell for many years. She also served her church as a Deacon and in many other roles as needed. She was an active member of Chapter F P.E.O., Big Horn Chapter of the National Society of D.A.R., past worthy matron of Lewisia Chapter of the Order of Eastern Star, Shell Garden Club and the Shell Coffee Club. A voracious reader she worked and volunteered for the Greybull Library. She enjoyed playing golf and worked and volunteered for Midway Golf Club. She loved games of all kinds, playing in a variety of bridge clubs, Yahtzee with her good friend Dawn, or any form of card game with almost anyone. She loved to travel and kept journals of the places she visited. She was an accomplished genealogist and put together several family books of her and of Russell’s family.
She was preceded in death by her parents, husband Russell Kimbro in 2001, and infant twin daughters in 1949.
She is survived by her sister, Marilyn Fishburn of Loveland, Colo.; son and daughter-in-law, Dave and Becky Kimbro of Kingwood, Texas; daughter and son-in-law, Pam and Rod Richardson of Laramie, Wyo.; granddaughters, Andrea (Bret) Nielsen, Danielle (Justin) Mitchell and Alyson (Lee) Stevens; grandsons, Geof and Bryan Kimbro; three great-grandchildren; two nieces; one nephew, numerous cousins and many friends.
Services will be held Thursday, March 14, 2013, at the First Presbyterian Church in Greybull at 10 a.m. A viewing will be held at the church a half hour prior to the services. Internment will follow at Whaley Cemetery. A potluck luncheon will follow at the First Presbyterian Church.
Pallbearers are Geof Kimbro, Bret Nielsen, Justin Mitchell, Bruce Fishburn, Larry Meade and Jerry Ewen. Honorary pallbearers are Donald Olson, Robert Nielsen, Loren Good and Augie Garcia.
Services are under the direction of Atwood Family Funeral Directors, Inc.
Memorial contributions can be made in Dorothy’s name to Big Horn Federal, Box 471, Greybull, WY 82426 to benefit the Greybull library.
April 18, 1926 – March 7, 2013
Word has been received of the death of former Greybull resident Shirley Mott. Shirley, 86, died March 7 in South Aurora Medical Center in Aurora, Colo., from injuries suffered from a fall outside her home in Aurora.
Shirley was the daughter of George and Geraldine Flitner Mott. (George was a businessman in Greybull in the 1930s and 1940s.) Shirley was raised in Greybull and spent a lot of time on the Flitner ranch on Shell Creek until she left Greybull to attend high school elsewhere.
Her career took her to Denver with a company that serviced the administrative needs of many oil companies.
Shirley led a full life, had many interests, and remained active prior to her hospitalization.
A memorial service will be held in Aurora in May.
April 11, 1939 – Feb. 15, 2013
A memorial service for George “Joe” William Andres of Cody will be held in Cody at a later date. Joe, 73, died Feb. 15 in Hot Springs, Ark.
He was born April 11, 1939, in Greybull, the middle of three children of George and Mary Andres. He grew up and received his education in Greybull and graduated from Greybull High School in 1957. He served two years in the United States Army.
He married Joyce in Tulsa, Okla., Feb. 14, 1988.
He was a 22-year resident of Cody. George retired from Baker Hughes, Inc., where he had worked as a supervisor for 33 years. He enjoyed bowling and restoring tractors.
His parents, sister Betty Lou, and aunt Betty preceded him in death.
He is survived by his wife Joyce; daughter and son-in-law, Jon and Renee Fazendine of Hot Springs, Ark.; stepsons Jimmy Jewell of Newport News, Va., Joe Jewell of Cody and Gary Wayne Higgins of Sioux Falls, S.D.; his sister, Peggy Fowler of Surprise, Ariz.; three grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; eight step-grandchildren and two step-great-grandchildren.
by nathan oster
The Wyoming Game and Fish Department will conduct on open house meeting from 7 to 9 p.m. Monday, March 25 at Greybull Town Hall to discuss proposed hunting season recommendations for 2013.
Game and Fish hosts open house season-setting meetings so individuals may talk directly with the wildlife biologists and game wardens responsible for managing big game.
Tom Easterly, the wildlife biologist based in Greybull, said several changes the elk, deer and turkey hunting seasons in the Big Horn Basin are being considered.
One proposal calls for a longer hunting season in Elk Area 41, where the focus continues to be reducing the herd population. “In the past we had one split in there — but for this coming year we’re proposing a little longer break and a second split, which will enable us to run the season into almost Chistmas.” Easterly explained that the breaks create periods of less disruption, which in turn create more favorable conditions for hunters when the season reopens.
Another proposal would create additional elk hunting licenses in different areas around the Big Horns and a longer cow season in Elk Area 40.
For deer, Easterly said there is a proposal to merge some hunt areas. “If people are curious, they can come to the meeting and see what the maps look like and where the merging has occurred,” he said.
The turkey hunting proposal may be the most significant change, Easterly said. Instead of having to apply for licenses, hunters would be able to pick them up at any G&F license selling agents.
“It’s a pretty major change and we expect to be getting a lot of comments on it,” Easterly said, adding that the earliest the change could take effect is in the spring of 2014.
A formal open house meeting, during which statewide seasons may be discussed, will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. March 27 at Big Horn Federal Bank in Cody.
Written comments may be submitted at the meetings or by mail to: Wyoming Game and Fish Department, Attn: Regulations 3030 Energy Lane, Casper, WY 82604. Written comments must be received by 5 p.m. Monday, April 1. All written comments are given to the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission for its review.
by nathan oster
Track practice has begun and athletes from Greybull Middle School and Greybull High School are busy preparing for their respective season openers, both of which are scheduled for Saturday, March 23.
The updated track schedules, which were released last week, show the high schoolers opening on their home oval with the Bill Gerrard Memorial Invitational and the middle school kids debuting at a meet in Meeteetse.
The Buffs are scheduled to attend six additional meets — in Basin, Worland, Ethete, Lovell, Thermopolis and Meeteetse — before the Class 2A West Regional in Lander May 10-11 and the State Track and Field Championships May 16-18 in Casper.
The middle school team is scheduled to attend a total of six meets, including its conference meet May 3 in Thermopolis. GMS’s only home meet of the season is scheduled for March 26.
Look for previews of the two track teams in next week’s issue of the Standard.
by nathan oster
Greybull would lose one of its restaurants but gain a Family Dollar store if a proposed real estate transaction is completed in the coming weeks.
Dean and Sheila Waddell, owners of Side Kick Pizza and Subs on North Sixth Street, have announced plans to close their business on Friday, March 15.
On a sign hanging in their front door, and in an advertisement appearing in this issue, the Waddells offered thanks to the community for its support over the years.
Prior to opening at their current location in 2004, the Waddells dispensed coffee out of a drive-through building in the Ron’s Food Farm parking lot.
Over the years they have developed a strong, loyal customer base.
“I’ve loved all the different people who have come in and talking with them,” said Sheila Waddell, emphasizing that it won’t be easy to walk away from the business which has been such a big part of their lives.
But she said the job has required a lot of her time — 10 hour days, six days a week — and that she’s looking forward to taking a couple of months off before she starts to look for another job.
“Plus I’ve got a new grandbaby coming, too,” she said, proudly.
The Waddells were in a position where they had little choice.
They didn’t own the building. Instead, they leased it — first from Kip and Cindy McIntosh, and then from Michael and Wendy Lannon, who acquired it from the McIntoshes last December.
In an interview Monday, Wendy Lannon said she and her husband, who own the Greybull Motel next door, purchased the property with idea of putting cabins and rentals adjacent to and behind the Side Kick building.
Not long after that, however, they were approached by Dave Murdock, who is a build-to-suit developer for the Family Dollar store franchise.
Murdoch eventually came to terms with the Lannons — then with the Waddells, who had some time remaining on their lease.
Reached on Tuesday afternoon, Murdock confirmed that he has the property under contract. He is buying the part of the lot that fronts Sixth Street and extends 185 feet to the rear.
The Lannons retained ownership of the property directly behind that. “We haven’t eliminated the possibility of doing cabins on the back of the property,” she said Tuesday. “We’re just going to wait and see how it’s all going to look.”
Murdock described himself as “an independent contractor” who initially identifies potential sites for Family Dollar stores. After he provides the information, the corporate folks at Family Dollar decide which site they prefer. He then purchases the property and puts up a building that will work for Family Dollar.
He has used the same approach to develop the Family Dollar stores in Thermopolis and Lovell, as well as those in Dubois and Pinedale that will be opening soon. Another one, in Kemmerer, is holding a grand opening this week.
For this search, Murdock looked at properties in both Basin and Greybull. Ultimately, Family Dollar directed him to proceed with the purchase of the site in Greybull.
“They have a due diligence process that they use to decide what communities they want to go into,” he said. “It’s an expensive process, too. You know, though, that they aren’t going to go into a community unless they are confident there’s a demand for their store.”
Murdock said he hopes to close on the real estate transaction around the 15th of April, and that once he obtains the permits he needs, he can usually have a building up and ready to go within 120 days.
“I’m hoping that by the end of October, we will have the building opened up and operating,” he said.
Two of the buildings on site, including the primary one which houses Side Kick Pizza and Subs, would need to be demolished to make way for the new Family Dollar building.
Murdock said the Family Dollar store he envisions would be about 8,320 square feet — which would be considerably smaller than two of its rival stores in the community, Ron’s Food Farm (15,000 square feet) and the Shopko store (approximately 20,000 square feet).
About Family Dollar
According to its website (familydollar.com), the chain already has several locations in the Big Horn Basin, including Cody, Powell, Lovell, Worland and Thermopolis.
Founded in 1959 in Charlotte, N.C., Family Dollar offers customers “a mix of quality name brand products they use every day, from consumable products such as household paper products and expanded food assortment to treasures for every home and even quality apparel for men, women and children. We also offer a mix of seasonal products, greeting cards, gift wrap and more.”
The company identifies as its “core customer” a “female head of household in her mid 50s making less than $40,000 per year.”
According to its website, Family Dollar has 7,600 stores in 45 states and 50,000 employees.
Murdock said that when it’s finished, the Greybull store would likely require a workforce of between 10 and 12 people.