Jan. 19, 2017



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Winter Storm Jupiter shuts down multi-state area

Veterans meeting held at Supeior cafe

Lawrence to host Bull Bonanza

No contest plea entered in stabbing case


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The Superior Express & Jewell County News 19 January 2017


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Winter Storm Jupiter shuts down multi-state area

Life began returning to normal Tuesday morning for area residents after a slow moving ice storm named Jupiter pretty much shut the area down Sunday and Monday.
The storm, which some thought might arrive as early as Friday, was a slow mover that didn't do much until after midnight Saturday. In Superior there was a brief period of sleet about 7:30 Saturday night and a clap or two of cloud to cloud thunder but all traces of the precipitation quickly vanished. By 8 a.m. Sunday 0.14 of an inch of precipitation had fallen and frozen.
As daylight broke Sunday, it looked like the walks and streets were only wet but looks were deceiving. The wet covered solid ice.
One friend of this newspaper living in Lincoln said she looked out and wasn't sure if what she was seeing Sunday afternoon was frozen or not so she went to investigate. She stepped out her door and yes it was ice, no question about it. Every time I threw my arms around trying to keep my balance, I could hear my neighbors shouting, "Whoa! Whoa! Whoa!" The neighbors were also curious about what was happening and had gone to their door just in time to see a demonstration of what happens when one tried to walk on the slick ice. Though she would preferred not to have witnesses, she said, "This old lady didn't fall."
Nuckolls County Sheriff Brad Baker said in the 24 years he had been associated with the sheriff's office, he had never seen Highway 14 between Superior and Nelson to be slicker.
Most area churches cancelled plans for Sunday services.
Schools were closed Monday and some remained closed Tuesday. Superior started at 10 a.m. Tuesday.
The Monday daily papers arrived from Lincoln and Omaha and United Parcel Service made deliveries on Monday. The post office and banks were closed for the Martin Luther King holiday
Downtown Superior was deserted most of Monday. Most stores didn't open. This newspaper didn't send a reporter door to door to check who was closed but the newspaper office and Superior Pharmacy were among the few to be open somewhat regular hours on Monday. Superior Motors Parts was open Monday morning and appeared to have several customers needing car parts. Dollar General and the convenience stores were open both Sunday and Monday. We didn't venture far enough east to see if Shopko opened either day.
Sleet and drizzle glazed swaths of the central U.S. on Sunday, extending icy weather that some meteorologists acknowledged fell short of dire forecasts.
The temperature hovered near the freezing mark, sneaking above for few hours and then dipping into freezing territory making it had to know how much ice we received. The National Weather Service reported the heaviest ice was along the stateline with most area served by the Hastings office receiving a half-inch or less. With warmer temperatures finally moving in about dark Monday, the sound of ice melting off trees and power lines sounded like new rain was falling.
Tuesday a reporter for this newspaper filmed steam coming off melting trees. The video of the smoking tree is now playing on this newspaper's web site at
The freeze made roads harrowing. In Kansas two troopers escaped injury when their vehicles were struck while working a crash along northbound Interstate 635. And in central Nebraska, authorities believe icy conditions contributed to a fiery crash involving two tractor-trailers shortly before 9 a.m. Sunday on Interstate 80, forcing a three-hour closure of 15 miles of Interstate 80. There were no injuries. A picture of an Adams County Highway Department salt truck that had nose dived off the road into a ditch was circulated widely via the internet.
The Nebraska State Patrol urged motorists to stay home both Sunday and Monday as the freezing rain made the roads dangerous to travel. Yet Tuesday morning U.S. Highway 136 from Highway 14 east into Thayer County was listed on state travel guides as being ice covered.
There were numerous power outages though damage to power lines and trees didn't prove to be nearly as extensive as first feared.
Some people lost power during the storm, others after the storm appeared to have passed.
Nearly 11,000 electric customers were without power in Oklahoma, nearly all in northwestern part of the state. Woodward County Emergency Management Director Matt Lehen-bauer said Sunday that the county was likely the hardest hit. He said that as some power is restored, the ice that's bent tree limbs begins to melt and the limbs snap back into place, sometimes knocking down additional power lines.
In the B Section of this newspaper, we have published a picture taken of an iced over cattle panel by a former Mankato resident Lynette (Bradrick) Balch. The photo was taken near her home at Woodward, Okla.
Fortunately the snow accompanied by winds gusting to 35 miles per hour expected to be associated with the back side of the storm failed to materialize Monday evening.
Near Fairbury enough ice had fallen that 10-inch diameter branches were breaking off trees.
Warmer, sunnier weather moved in Tuesday. The temperature was near 25 degrees just before daybreak but the sky was clear and the sun quickly began to warm into the 40s.
The Superior Utility Department had to deal with two rounds of power outages. The crew had to cut back a number of ice covered branches that were drooping into the lines. Workers associated with Energized Electric and Crowl Tree Service helped the community's four-man electric crew.
The National Weather Service reports the precipation received at most locations exceeded the January average for the month. Among the examples given by the Weather Serivce was 1.23 inches at Hubbell, average 0.62. Red Cloud 1.22, average 0.53. Beloit 1.55, average 0.93, Lebanon 1.41, average 0.78, Smith Center 1.35, average 0.86. CoCoRHS observers at Superior and Hardy reported 1.16 and and 1.75 inches. The January average for Superior 0.57.

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Veterans meeting held at Superior cafe

Jim Curfman, a 1965 graduate of Superior High School, Vietnam veteran and founder of the Veteran's Education, Training and Support (V.E.T.S.) Group, will be at the Velvet Rose in Superior today (Thursday) to share information regarding Veteran's Compensation Benefits. Meet and greet will begin at 6:30 p.m. while the meeting will run from 7 to  8:30 p.m.
Curfman is not affiliated with the Veterans Administration (VA), however, he is accredited with the VA Office of General Counsel in Washington, D.C. to prepare, present and prosecute claims for VA benefits for veterans, spouses and helpless children.
Curfman founded the V.E.T.S. Group after visiting the Vietnam Memorial Wall that was brought to Superior and has helped hundreds of veterans apply for and receive compensation benefits, focusing on claims and services that veterans had been denied.
He said "Veterans and spouses need to realize that VA rules have changed and training has improved.  What was said or done a few years ago is not necessarily how it is done today."  
Curfman's Group meets on a regular basis to keep veterans up to date on what the VA is doing that may impact their claim(s) for benefits.  Recently, however, he has decided to launch an outreach program, beginning in Nuckolls County, the turf he proudly served to protect.
Like most veterans, Curfman remained isolated and distanced himself from applying for any benefits, until the residual effects of Agent Orange reared its ugly head and began claiming the health and lives of those that served in Vietnam.  Now, many veterans are "racing the clock," to make sure their spouses will receive the benefits they are entitled to.
Curfman said it can be a difficult process. However, he believes he can teach veterans and spouses how to negotiate the process. Therefore, he said veterans, the spouses of a veteran, the widow(er) of a veteran, a former spouse of a deceased veteran, a helpless child fathered by a "boots-on-the-ground" Vietnam veteran, or a veteran that served in Korea on the DMZ during the Vietnam War need to attend this meeting.
Tim Jorgenson, also a Superior High School graduate and Vietnam veteran, is the treasurer for the V.E.T.S. Group and a member of the staff.  He will accompany Curfman to Superior and assist during the presentation.  Curfman and Jorgenson thank all veterans for their service, welcome all veterans home and hope to see them at the meeting.
This meeting is made possible by the Velvet Rose, V.E.T.S. Group, Superior VFW Post No. 3355 and Jim's Towing Service of Nelson.

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Lawrence to host Bull Bonanza
If you want to see bulls on Main Street and do not want to travel to Pamplona, Spain- then you can simply travel to Lawrence on Saturday, Jan. 28. They will not be running down the street like they do in Spain. Instead they will be safely confined in pens.
The South Central Cattlemen Association is holding the 9th annual Bull Bonanza on Main Street of the northwest Nuckolls County Community. Pens of bulls will line the street, featuring consignments of bulls representing the great beef genetics from cattlemen from across the south central Nebraska region.
Display times will be from 10:30 a.m. through 3:30 p.m. The Bull Bonanza will provide an opportunity for area cattlemen to showcase their bulls. It also provides the opportunity for the public and potential bull buyers to view a nice selection of area raised bulls of various breeds and ages.
The exhibtors may also visit with the cattlemen about their breeding and genetics program and their cattle, or perhaps discuss issues concerning the beef industry. Attendees may register for a nice array of door prizes to be given away during the day. The Lawrence-Nelson FFA will have a lunch stand at the site.
Dewey Lienemann, extension educator said, "It is a nice venue to have representation of the best beef genetics in the area all in one place so you can go from pen to pen and analyze the breeding and production potential of each bull. You can just come and look, talk to the cattlemen and of course if you find the right one, the bulls are for sale. The season for selecting next year bull is upon us and this is a great opportunity to get a head start. It will also be interesting for 4-H and FFA youth and the public to see the genetics that are available in south central Nebraska and talk to the cattlemen and families that raise them."
There is still time if interested cattlemen would like to consign bulls to the event. A registration form and entry fee is required by Monday, however, late registrations are welcome. For questions or more information please call: Matt Caldwell, Ken Herz, Scott Bonifas or the Webster County Extension office in Red Cloud.

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No contest plea entered in stabbing case
James Stillwell, who was charged with first-degree assault and use of a deadly weapon to commit a felony in connection with a stabbing incident in Superior on October 29, 2015, appeared before a judge in Thayer County District Court, Wednesday, Jan. 4., in the county courthouse at Hebron.
Stillwell pled no contest to the Class II felony charges.
The hearing was the result of a stabbing in Superior. Superior police discovered a 32 year old female outside a Superior house with a knife embedded in her back. The victim reported she had gone to answer a knock on the door when the defendant approached her from behind and stabbed her in the back with a three inch knife. She suffered lung and back injuries. The defendant fled the scene and was captured after a wide-scale manhunt.
Stillwell is to be sentenced in Nuckolls County District Court, Nelson, Tuesday, March 7.

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