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Articles from the June 19, 2024 edition

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  • Area Physician Shortage Being Addressed by AdventHealth System

    Special to the News|Updated Jun 25, 2024

    AdventHealth welcomed nearly 50 new resident doctors into its health care system with a White Coat Ceremony Friday, marking the start of their post-graduate training. The new graduates will help alleviate shortage of physicians locally, part of a nationwide problem. AdventHealth operates hospital facilities in Lake Wales, Davenport, Sebring, and Lake Placid, as well as a new Urgent Care facility on Cypress Gardens Boulevard. AdventHealth leaders also honored the first...

  • Summer Rainy Season Set to Begin in Earnest

    Robert Connors|Updated Jun 22, 2024

    After a serious months-long drought that saw falling lake levels and withered lawns and shrubs, southeast Polk and the entire region are finally expecting to see the start of the normal summer monsoon rains. Forecasts are calling for as much as 2" to 3" of rain in some locations on a daily basis this week, with areas that see repeated rounds expected to incur localized flooding. A saturated atmosphere and light steering winds will lead to the development of thunderstorms...

  • LW Charter School Board Facing Lawsuit Over Dismissal of Superintendent

    Robert Connors|Updated Jun 21, 2024

    With the threat of a "long, expensive, and distracting" lawsuit looming, the Lake Wales Charter School board will have an opportunity to reconsider their June 7 decision to summarily fire Superintendent Dr. Wayne V. Rodolfich "for cause," according to an attorney representing him. The board agreed without objection to place the issue on their July 22 agenda after hearing from attorney Kemp Brinson, who is representing Rodolfich. Brinson, in a special presentation that was the...

  • OPINION: Slaton Faces Choice That Will Affect Thousands

    News Editorial Board|Updated Jun 21, 2024

    Lake Wales City Manager James Slaton finds his relaxation, he recently told Lake Wales News, by fishing, typically on salt water far from the ring of a telephone. It's an understandable outlet. Slaton has demonstrated that he can play just as well on dry land, whatever the game. The job of city manager is undoubtedly one of the more interesting and challenging careers in the modern workforce. Charged with running a government as an appointed, rather than elected, official,...

  • One Dead After Shooting on Northside Drive

    Howard Davies|Updated Jun 20, 2024

    UPDATE: An argument between two young men who had known each other since high school near a recently-constructed county football field led to a shooting that left one dead around 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday evening in Lake Wales. The incident happened outside city limits near a county-owned sports park on W. Northside Drive, about 200 feet north of Washington Avenue. According to a preliminary report from Polk Sheriff's investigators, Vincent Thomas, Jr., 21, arrived in a car at a...

  • Terry Ronald Myers, 1941-2024

    News Obituary Service|Updated Jun 20, 2024

    Terry Ronald Myers, 83, passed away in Tallahassee on Saturday, June 15th. From Terry: "If I made one person laugh, a few people smile, then life down here, it was all worthwhile." He was born March 2, 1941, in Indianapolis, Indiana to the late Charles Robert and Virgie Bea Barker. Terry worked as a salesman (Warner Candy Company, Wonder Bread, Merita Bread, Snyders and Archway Cookies) but he also worked for the Polk County Sheriff's Office as a detention officer. He was very...

  • Lake Wales Heritage Volunteers Planting Again as Drought Ends

    Robert Connnors|Updated Jun 19, 2024

    A team of civic-minded volunteers from Lake Wales Heritage took advantage of the rainier weather this week to work on the organization's ongoing streetscaping project. Monday morning found a team of volunteers planting nine young lemon bottlebrush trees on South 4th Street. The trees were replacements for some lost due to heat stress and drought this spring. "Now that the seasonal monsoon rain season has begun, the time is right," said Heritage volunteer director Preston...

  • Tommy C. Gaffney, 1961-2024

    News Obituary Service|Updated Jun 19, 2024

    Tommy C. Gaffney, age 63, passed away June 14, 2024, at Bartow Regional Medical Center in Bartow. He was born on May 16, 1961, in Haines City, FL. He worked in Records Management for Polk County Board of County Commissioners. He was a Representative for the Florida Mobile Homes Organization, former Teamster Representative and former Moose Lodge Governor. He enjoyed spending time with family, traveling and playing jokes. He was preceded in death by parents Raymond Gaffney &...

  • Eagle Ridge Mall On Upswing, Manager Tells Gathered Chamber Members

    Robert Connors|Updated Jun 19, 2024

    An upbeat message of economic progress was shared with more than 100 area business leaders during a Business After Hours event at the Eagle Ridge Mall Tuesday evening. The event was sponsored by the Lake Wales and Winter Haven Chambers of Commerce. Eagle Ridge Mall General Manager Curtis Gibson told the gathering that the mall "belongs" to the people of the Ridge, from Frostproof to Winter Haven, and touted the expansion of business that has been happening there. When he took...

  • Networking the Order of the Day at Frostproof Chamber Business Expo

    Robert Connnors|Updated Jun 18, 2024

    The June Business Expo luncheon hosted by the Frostproof Chamber of Commerce drew a crowd of local businesspeople Tuesday to network, sharing camaraderie and ideas. More than 20 organizations were represented at the event, organized by the Chamber's new executive director Emily Bennett, who introduced each business to the crowd. Business representatives were then given an opportunity to speak at the event, offering a chance to introduce their product or services to others in...