Panola College Concert and Jazz Bands to present fall concert

Panola College Concert and Jazz Bands to present fall concert

The Panola College Concert and Jazz Bands will present their fall concert on Tuesday, October 27 at 6:00 p.m. The concert will be presented on the outdoor quad, located between the Martha Miller Administration Building and the M.P. Baker Library on the Panola College campus.

The concert band will perform "Flight of Eagles" by the American composer, Elliot Del Borgo, who wrote the music for the closing ceremonies at the 1980 Olympics. The band will also perform Robert W. Smith's "Encanto." Both pieces contain exciting rhythms very suitable for the outdoor event.

The jazz band will also perform "I Feel Good" by James Brown, as well as "I Dreamed a Dream," and "Here's That Rainy Day." The band will feature soloists on "The Way We Were," as well as "Boogie Shoes" and the Beatle's hit, "Lady Madonna."

"We are hoping to provide a safe and enjoyable opportunity for members of the community to come out and take part in an evening of music," said Dwaine Hubbard, Panola College Band Director.

The concert is open to the public with admission being free of charge. Due to concerns regarding Covid-19 and the health and safety of the audience and musicians, social distancing is required. Attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and/or blankets to sit on.

Tenaha High School Facebook posting, October 5, 2020 at 5:11 p.m.

Tenaha High School to Enter Remote Learning Through Thursday, October 8
Out of an abundance of caution, and in light of the fact that there were multiple gatherings of members of various communities over the weekend, Tenaha High School students will be placed into remote instruction for the next 72 hours in an effort to monitor symptoms and prevent a potential surge of Covid-19. At this time, there are two confirmed positive cases in the high school (one student, one staff) that have come to light after the weekend gatherings, but hardly an outbreak of any kind to cause a concern. The concern is prevention. If state-wide trends tell us anything, it is that a second wave of Covid-19 infections is possible if not likely. So, in light of the social gatherings of the weekend and the knowledge of new cases today, we feel it is in the best interest of all Tenaha High School students to engage in remote learning for a time long enough to evaluate symptoms and exposure from those gatherings.

High School students will be required to log-in and complete class work on Google Classroom for these three days remotely. Anyone who has device needs may come to the building to check out a chrome book from Ms. Jacobs tomorrow morning. High School staff will be on hand in their classrooms conducting remote instruction throughout the day.

Tenaha Middle School (Grades 5-8) and Tenaha Elementary (Grades PK-4) will carry on with school in a normal setting. We do not have any reason to think any students on these campuses have a reasonable risk to exposure based on the data and information we have at this time.
Tiger Football games vs. West Sabine on both Thursday and Friday night will continue as scheduled and Mr. Sours and Coach Jeremy Jenkins will be communicating practice times and expectations to the high school team and band members.

Again, this decision is made for two reasons: 1) an overabundance of caution to get in front of any potential surge that may come with Covid-19 and recent social communal gatherings, and 2) in the event that students in substantial numbers begin to develop symptoms as the week progresses, we may have successfully been able to isolate exposure to just those effected students.

Students at Tenaha High School will return to regular school on Friday, October 9 barring any new information that could arise.

We apologize for any inconvenience or concern this might cause, but it was a part of our summer planning to be prepared for just this type of scenario and contingency. Stay diligent and stay confident that together, we can all beat Covid and the disruptions it causes.

Find your precinct's sample ballot at:

Written statement from Janet Reddell's attorney, David E. Moore.

Today Vistra announced an $850M investment in solar generation and battery storage in Texas that includes a project in Rusk County. You can read the news release here:

Carthage ISD statement on the actions at the 9/28/2020 special board meeting.

The Panola Rodeo Team Kicks off the 2020-21 Rodeo Season with a Victory

The Panola Rodeo Team Kicks off the 2020-21 Rodeo Season with a Victory

The Panola Rodeo Team had the home field advantage this weekend as they won both the Men's and Woman's Championships at the first Southern Region Rodeo of the year. Panola hosted the rodeo this past weekend at Bar None Cowboy Church Arena in Tatum, Tx. Panola's Men's Team, which is the defending National Champions, took the victory and were followed by Wharton County Junior College finishing in second place, Hill College third, Texas A&M University fourth, McNeese State University fifth, Sam Houston State University sixth, Trinity Valley Community College seventh, and Southwest Texas Junior College eighth to finish out the men's standings. On the women's side, Panola took its first victory followed by Hill College second, McNeese State University third, Texas A&M University fourth, Wharton County Junior College fifth, Southwest Texas Junior College sixth, Sam Houston State University seventh, and Texas A&M Commerce in eighth.

Josey Murphy, a freshman from Keatchie, LA, had an amazing weekend to lead the women's team and wrap up the All Around Women's Title with a victory in breakaway roping and a 4th place finish in the goat tying. She won the breakaway with a sharp 2.2 and was 4th in the goat tying with a 6.9 second run.

Freshman, Kincade Henry, from Mount Pleasant, TX won the tiedown roping with an 8.6 second run. Kolt Dement, another rookie from Rusk, TX, won the bareback riding with an 82-point ride. Freshman, Gauge McBride, from Kearney, NE split 2nd place with a 77-point ride.

A few season veterans for the Panola Ponies racked up points in other events. Michael Womack was 4th in the saddle bronc. As well as Maison Davis, being a 2.7 in the breakaway placed her 7th for the weekend. Others receiving points in the team roping included rookies Jacques Trahan and Thomas Wallace finished 6th with an 8.1, Jayden Gould and her partner Colt Leach from Tyler Junior College roped an 8.4 to be 7th, and Trace Clark and Bradford Fisher placed 10th.

The Panola Rodeo Team will be back in action this coming weekend Oct. 2-3 at the Southwest Texas Junior College Rodeo in Uvalde, Tx. Then they will be in Mt. Pleasant at the Northeast Texas Community College Rodeo on Oct. 16-17.

From the Elysian Fields ISD Facebook page on September, 25, 2020

Due to safety concerns and protocols in place for COVID-19 mitigation, no parents or students from other campuses or non-students will be allowed entry to today's high school pep rally. Only current Elysian Fields High School students will be allowed to attend.

Thank you for your cooperation.

September 25, 2020

The City of Carthage's web page is presently down.

Those who are trying to pay their water bill online should call the city and make payment over the phone. The number to call is 903-693-3868.

Stay tuned to KGAS Radio for updates.

Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5620 is again sponsoring two youth essay contests for Panola County students in grades 6-12. Local winners receive cash awards and advance to district and state competition for thousands of dollars in scholarship awards.

The Voice of Democracy contest is open for students in grades 9 through 12 who write an essay on a patriotic theme and record their essay on a CD or thumb drive. The state winners receive an all-expenses paid trip to Washington D.C. to compete on the national level. The national winner receives a $30,000 scholarship.

The Patriot's Pen contest is open to students in grades 6 through 8. Students express their opinions on a patriotic theme in a written essay. State winners compete for a total of $91,000 in U.S. Savings Bonds with the national winner receiving a $5,000 award.

Entries for both contests are available by contacting contest chairman John Foster at 903-693-8607. The contest is open to all public school, private school and home-schooled students who are encouraged to participate. The entry deadline is Oct. 31 for both contests.


Carthage ISD is making several changes to ticket purchasing procedures for their 3 home games for the 2020 football season. Due to the UIL policy of crowd capacity being 50%, reserved season tickets will be eliminated for the 2020 season. However, season ticket holders will have the FIRST opportunity to repurchase their season tickets for the 2021 season, next August.

Students involved with Friday night activities, such as football team members, trainers, band members, auxiliary, cheerleaders, Belles, and the Crew, will have the first chance to buy 4 tickets per player/member for their family members. The remaining tickets will go on sale to the general public at 8 am at the Bulldawg Stop on the Tuesday prior to the Friday night home game. If there are any remaining tickets, those will be sold at the gate.





Tenaha Tigers set to open District play on Friday vs. Lovelady

Tickets will go on sale Tuesday morning. (Adult $5/Student $3)

Tuesday: Football/band/cheer families

Wednesday: General Admission

Friday at Noon: All sales final

Tickets at gate? Only if there are tickets not sold during the week. Fans can purchase tickets at the TISD Administration Building and Students can purchase tickets for families during their lunch period starting Tuesday from Mrs. Tovar in the high school office.

Fatality Accident - September 18, 2020

From Jean Dark, Texas DPS:

TYLER - At 4:37 yesterday afternoon, Troopers responded to a one vehicle fatal crash on FM-451, approximately two miles north of Elysian Fields in Harrison County. The investigators preliminary report indicates that the driver of a 2001 Dodge Ram 1500, Daniele Kathleen Fottenbury, 19, of Marshall was traveling east on FM-451. The roadway curved and the driver, for an unknown reason, crossed the center stripe, overcorrected and entered the south barditch in a left side skid. The vehicle rolled multiple times. The driver was transported to Good Shepherd - Marshall in stable condition. A passenger in her vehicle, identified as Nickolas Joseph Fottenbury was pronounced at the scene by Judge Nancy George and was taken to Meadowbrook Funeral Home in Marshall. The crash remains under investigation.

Panola College named a

Panola College named a "2020 Great College to Work For"

Panola College is one of the best colleges in the nation to work for, according to a new survey by The Great Colleges to Work For program. Panola College has received this honor for the 9th year in a row.

The results, released Wednesday, September 16 in a special insert of The Chronicle of Higher Education, are based on a survey of 221 colleges and universities. In all, 79 of the 221 institutions achieved "Great College to Work For" recognition for specific best practices and policies. Results are reported for small, medium, and large institutions, with Panola College included among the small universities with 500 to 2,999 students.

Panola College was also placed on the Honor Roll as one of only 42 colleges across the nation as a stand out college in its size category. Of those, only 12 are two-year colleges.

Panola College won honors in 10 categories this year:
•Collaborative Governance
•Compensation and Benefits
•Confidence in Senior Leadership
•Facilities, Workspace, and Security
•Job Satisfaction
•Professional/Career Development Programs
•Respect and Appreciation
•Supervisor/Department Chair Relationship
•Teaching Environment
•Work/Life Balance

"This is a very satisfying affirmation of Panola College, but our real goal is not recognition - it's being a community that values the needs and contributions of every individual. In that sense, everyone at Panola helps to make this a great place to work," said Panola College President, Greg Powell.

The survey results are based on a two-part assessment process: an institution questionnaire that captured employment data and workplace policies from each institution, and a survey administered to faculty, administrators, and professional support staff. The primary factor in deciding whether an institution received recognition was the employee feedback.

The Great Colleges to Work For program is one of the largest and most respected workplace-recognition programs in the country. For more information and to view all current and previous recognized institutions, visit the Great Colleges program website at

ModernThink, a strategic human capital consulting firm, administered the survey and analyzed the results.

The Road To The CNFR Starts Here!

The Road To The CNFR Starts Here!

The Road to the College National Finals Rodeo starts here with the Panola College Rodeo, on September 25 and 26, 2020. Hosted by the defending National Champions Panola College Rodeo Team at the Bar None Cowboy Church Arena in Tatum, TX, with the slack beginning Friday and Saturday at 10 a.m. and the Performance at 7 p.m.

Admission is free for all fans, however, the seating will be limited due to social distancing requirements of Covid-19.

Panola College would like to thank this year's corporate sponsor, Calamity Jane's Boutique Store located in Kilgore, TX, and all other sponsors for this year's rodeo. "It has definitely been a different year already for the preparations for the rodeo, and we are confident that it will be a safe family environment for all," says Coach Jeff Collins.

The Panola College Rodeo is the first of ten rodeos in the Southern Region and is normally one of the largest rodeos of the year. The Southern Region is traditionally known as one of the toughest regions in the country for college rodeo and consist of Hill College, Louisiana State University of Alexandria, McNeese State University, Northeast Texas Community College, Panola College, Sam Houston State University, Southwest Texas Junior College, Stephen F. Austin State University, Texas A&M University, Texas A&M University- Commerce, Texas A&M University-Kingsville, Trinity Valley Community College, and Wharton County Junior College.

Coach Jeff Collins and his men's team at Panola College are still the defending 2019 National Champions entering this season, since the rodeo season was cut short last March. Coach Collins is excited about his men's and women's teams for the coming year and is looking forward to defending that men's national championship. "The kids are definitely ready to compete. We have a very talented group of sophomores and freshmen. They are looking sharp and crisp and ready to compete, and our sophomores are adding great leadership in the arena in all events. I am excited to finally get to see both the men and women teams compete as both will be fighting for the national championship. We would like to thank all of the sponsors for standing behind our team and supporting our program," says Coach Collins.

Panola College ADN and Center VN programs accepting applicants until Oct. 1

The Panola College Associate Degree Nursing (ADN) and Center Vocational Nursing (VN) programs are accepting applicants until October 1, 2020.

Students accepted to the VN track will begin the program in January 2021 on the Center campus. Applications can be picked up at either the Center or Carthage campus beginning September 1, 2020.

Contact Yvette Royal at 903-694-4026 on the Carthage campus or Rachel Paddie at 936-598-9543 on the Center campus for additional information.

Students accepted to the ADN traditional track will begin the program in January 2021. Applicants are invited to schedule a mentoring appointment with Katie Davis by calling 903-694-4019.

Admission requirements can be found for both programs at under Programs, Health Sciences.

August 25, 2020

Panola County is now exempt from Governor Greg Abbott's Executive Order GA-29, which requires all Texans to wear masks in public spaces, according to the Texas Department of Emergency Management website.

Panola County Judge, LeAnn Jones, filed for a waiver with the state of Texas after the county's total of active COVID-19 cases dipped below 20. Judge Jones issued this statement in the form, "I understand that if the county exceeds 20 active cases then the county will be required to comply with all aspects of GA-29. After a 30-day waiting period, if the county has less than 20 active cases, I am eligible to reapply for exemption."

So once again, as of now, Panola County is no longer required to wear masks in public places.

Rutherford, Lambert named Panola College 'Faculty of the Year'

Rutherford, Lambert named Panola College 'Faculty of the Year'

Panola College presented its 2019-2020 Faculty of the Year awards on August 12 during fall convocation to Dr. Kevin Rutherford and Cheri Lambert. The awards were originally scheduled to be presented during the spring but were moved due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The awards were presented by Darrell Hudson and Dwayne Ferguson, the 2018-2019 recipients.

Dr. Kevin Rutherford was named Academic Faculty of the Year. He has been at Panola College since 1999 and is an instructor of biology.

"He was particularly helpful in lending a hand to both students and faculty during the sudden switch to online learning that took place during the spring," said a colleague. "He was instrumental in helping me get through the end of the spring semester during the pandemic. I couldn't have made it through without his help."

"He is extremely knowledgeable in his subject and his technology skills have been a lifesaver for me," said a second colleague. "I appreciate his exemplary leadership during this very difficult time."

Cheri Lambert was named Technical Faculty of the Year. She has been at Panola College since 1996 and is the chair of the OTA (occupational therapy assistant) program.

"She continuously expands her skill level through continuing education courses and implements what she had learned in the classroom," said a colleague. "She has amazing leadership ability and interpersonal skills. She has created a widely respected program that has produced many excellent students that are valuable members of the healthcare community."

"We appreciate our incredible faculty and all that they do to serve our students," said Dr. Bubba Adams, Vice President of Instruction. "We are looking forward to kicking off another successful year at Panola College."

Carthage Sports Cancelations

The Carthage vs. Liberty-Eylau football scrimmages (9TH grade, junior varsity and varsity) on August 20th, have been canceled.

The Carthage volleyball games at Paris, Friday August 21, 2020 have been canceled.

Breaking News

Press Release from Panola County Sheriff, Kevin Lake

Also, from this morning's arrest report:



Charles C. Matthews Foundation establishes scholarship at Panola College to support future educators

Charles C. Matthews Foundation establishes scholarship at Panola College to support future educators

In anticipation of the partnership between Panola College and the University of Texas in Tyler (UT Tyler), the Charles C. Matthews Foundation has established the Charles C. Matthews Foundation Teaching Scholarship. The scholarship is intended to support students at Panola College who are enrolled in the Associate of Arts in Teaching (AAT) program. There were almost 100 students majoring in the AAT program this past spring.

Panola College is partnering with UT Tyler to bring their Early Childhood - Grade 6 bachelor program to the Panola College campus in Carthage beginning the spring 2021 semester. This partnership is intended for students who are completing the AAT program at Panola College to continue their education towards a bachelor's degree through UT Tyler more conveniently on the Panola College campus.

Individuals seeking to obtain the BSIS degree through UT-Tyler and Panola College must:
·Be enrolled in the AAT degree program at Panola College at the time they apply to UT Tyler;
·Apply to UT Tyler through ApplyTexas; and
·Meet the formal criteria to be admitted into the UT Tyler's EC-6 teacher preparation program.

"We believe that the scholarship established by the Charles C. Matthews Foundation is an excellent way to begin this partnership with UT Tyler to Panola College," said Dr. Greg Powell, Panola College President. "Educators are a valuable and essential part of our community and we appreciate the Foundation's generosity in supporting future educators for generations to come."

The Charles C. Matthews Foundation Teaching Scholarship will be awarded annually to a student enrolled in the associate of arts teaching program at Panola College with a preference going to a student who intends to continue into a baccalaureate teaching program.

Photo: (L to R) Richard Ballenger, Robert Underwood, David Bush, Vern Reeder, and Jim Payne

Permanent public restrooms now near the Splash Pad at Davis Park.

Panola College's MLT program accepting applications until Aug. 15

Panola College's MLT program accepting applications until Aug. 15

In the fall of 2012, Panola College and its Health Information Technology department launched a new program: Medical Lab Technician (MLT). Eight years later, this program is still going strong.

Students who complete the MLT program will receive an Associate of Applied Science in Medical Laboratory Technology. The MLT program requirement courses are offered exclusively online. This gives students the opportunity to balance family life and/or work life while pursuing a career in clinical lab science. Students meet 3 Saturdays per semester on the Panola College campus in Carthage to perform hands-on lab activities that prepare them for clinical experience and future employment.

The MLT is a critical member of the healthcare team. These lab technicians collect, receive, and process specimens in various forms (i.e. blood, sputum, cerebrospinal fluid, and more). Physicians routinely order tests on these specimens in order to get a picture of the overall health of a patient, or to diagnose any acute illnesses or disease processes that may be going on inside the body.

The MLT program is now accepting applications for the fall semester. The final deadline to apply is August 15. Information about the program, along with the application, can be found at If you would like additional information or have a question, email Kim Bishop at

On July 27, 2020, a ribbon cutting was held to welcome B's Pitt Crew BBQ to the Panola County Chamber of Commerce. B's is located at 2699 SE LOOP in Carthage.

A ribbon cutting was held on July 22, 2020 to welcome USA Donuts to the Panola County Chamber of Commerce. USA Donuts is located at 204 South Shelby Street in Carthage.

Shreveport Police Department presented a painting of Sheriff's Deputy Chris Dickerson to his family and the Panola County Sheriff's Department.


In response to Governor Abbott's most recent executive order requiring Texas citizens to wear a face covering in public, we have been receiving calls asking about our local enforcement of this order. The Panola County Sheriff's Office STRONGLY encourages all citizens to practice safe social distancing, proper personal hygiene, and to use all necessary precautions during these times of the COVID-19 pandemic.

While we encourage the public to take all necessary precautions, we will encourage VOLUNTARY compliance regarding wearing a mask, but we WILL NOT be issuing warnings OR citations for failure to comply.

The order states that a verbal warning must be issued to each violator first, then a citation to be issued for repeated violations. That would require a database to be created to keep up-to-date names of each individual warned, then the database would have to be manually checked prior to a citation being issued. While we encourage precautions, we do not have the staff to enforce the basic mask order, much less to keep up with a database who has received a warning for not wearing a mask and who has not, along with conducting our regular duties.

We will continue to respond to emergency calls of service, enforce criminal laws, etc, as we have since 1846, but we will not be actively enforcing this latest mask order in the public. However, places of business have the right to require a mask to be worn while conducting business at their establishment. Should a business refuse to serve someone for failure to comply with the mask order, they do have the right to do so, just as businesses have required wearing shirts and shoes to be worn in order to be served for years. We would only intervene in this instance if a breach of the peace occurs, if the business owner asked for someone who is causing a problem to be removed, and/or a criminal trespass warning is requested to be issued for their place of business.

We will also not be responding to enforce gatherings of more than 10 people, of course unless a breach of the peace or a criminal act has occurred. Again, we strongly recommend practicing social distancing, proper personal hygiene, and other safe practices while in the public, in an effort to protect yourself and others. We continue to practice social distancing and other safety protocols at our office for the safety of our staff and the public. We all must work together to combat this and other contagious diseases. However, this office will not force restrictions on our citizens that should be voluntarily decided by each individual.

We hope this answers some of the many questions we have been receiving since this order went in to effect.

Sheriff Kevin Lake

July 6, 2020 Press Release from Carthage Police Department

July 6, 2020 Press Release from Carthage Police Department

Carthage Noon Lions Club recently elected new officers.


On Monday evening at approximately 11:00 p.m., Panola County dispatch received a call reporting an elderly female had wondered off from her residence on CR 158 in the Longbranch area, and had not been seen for approximately 3 hours. The caller reported that the missing person is Bettie Kemp Smith, B/F age 72, 5'8", and approximately 110 lbs. It was reported that when last seen, Mrs. Smith was wearing white pants, black and white tennis shoes, and a possible pastel colored shirt.

Mrs. Smith is reported to have advanced stages of dementia, and has walked away from her residence on previous occasions, but was always located a short time later. An immediate search of the area by family members did not reveal the discovery of Mrs. Smith, so they notified the Sheriff's Office of the situation. Upon officer's arrival, a search of the immediate area was conduct, but Mrs. Smith was not located. A Texas DPS helicopter out of Garland, Texas responded to assist in the search, and a K-9 team from TDCJ also responded and is currently conducting a K-9 search of the area.

If anyone in the area of CR 158 has seen, or does see Mrs. Smith, please contact the Panola County Sheriff's Office at 903-693-0333. We also ask all the residents in the area to check your unlocked vehicles and outbuildings, due to it being reported that Mrs. Smith has sometimes hidden when she has walked away from her home.

Kevin Lake - Sheriff

Photo shows 80th birthday, but he is actually 79.

Truck photo from stock photos, not necessarily matching exactly to the one he was driving.

Tommie Ritter Smith announces plans for the 2020 Texas Country Music Hall of Fame Classic Country Music Festival

Tommie Ritter Smith announces plans for the 2020 Texas Country Music Hall of Fame Classic Country Music Festival

CARTHAGE, TEXAS - Tommie Ritter Smith, President/CEO of the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame & The Tex Ritter Museum has just announced plans for the 2020 Texas Country Music Hall of Fame Classic Country Music Festival to be held on Friday, August 7, 2020. Preliminary auditions for the John Ritter Tribute Showcase will be held on Saturday, July 11, 2020.

"Fighting COVID-19 is an unprecedented challenge and the safety and wellbeing of our fans, bands and crew and all of the volunteers who help pull off our shows should always be the top priority", Smith stated. "Health organizations and governments around the world have strongly discouraged large public gatherings for an undetermined period of time. With many events throughout the world already cancelled, we have made the decision to change our 2020 John Ritter Tribute Showcase and Texas Country Music Hall of Fame Induction Show to a live stream concert for all to enjoy . We hope to have everyone back together next year for an even bigger and better weekend than ever!"
The one night only Texas Country Music Hall of Fame Classic Country Music Festival will be held on Friday, August 7, 2020 that you can tune in to from the comfort of your home. The show will feature the John Ritter Tribute Showcase Contest with the top 15 contestants from the preliminary auditions to be held on July 11, The Texas Country Music Hall of Fame Band, some of the past Ambassadors and much more, to be announced soon. All you need to do is go to the website at or and click on the link that night at 7PM and start watching. There is no cost to watch the live stream. The shows will also be broadcast on KGAS Radio 104.3 FM in Carthage, KMHT 103.9 FM in Marshall and KWRD 98.5 FM in Henderson.
They do need your support for the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame and their continued
dedication to provide a first-rate museum to honor those Texans who have made outstanding
contributions to country music. The Texas Country Music Hall of Fame asks that you consider
making a donation, maybe the cost of a ticket you would have purchased to their shows.
Donations can be made to The Texas Country Music Hall of Fame, 300 W. Panola St., Carthage,
Texas 75633.

Those wishing to try out for the John Ritter Tribute Showcase can sign up now for the
auditions to be held on Saturday, July 11 at the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame. Sign up
forms can be found on, just scroll down to the Showcase link and click on
the "download form" button. You can also pick up a form at the Panola County Chamber of
Commerce or the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame.

Social distancing protocols will be in place for all events. More information will be announced

Press Release from the Panola County Sheriff's Office - May 22, 2020


The Panola County Sheriff's Office is searching for missing person Joe Roy McMillian, black male, 80 years of age. McMillian is 5'11" in height, approximately 180 pounds, black hair, brown eyes, last seen wearing a red shirt and blue jeans. McMillian was last seen on Thursday, 5/21/2020, on FM 1970 in the Clayton area. McMillian left his residence off county road 302 to run errands and never returned home. His family contacted authorities after exhausting all options for his whereabouts.

McMillian was driving a 2004 GMC Sierra truck with Texas license plate DMK 2975. The Panola County Sheriff's Office has entered McMillian as a missing persons as well as his vehicle. Texas Department of Public Safety has also issued a Silver Alert for McMillian. McMillian is a diabetic and is showing early signs of dementia. McMillian's truck was possibly seen in the Nacogdoches Texas area later that same date. If you have seen or know of the whereabouts of Joe Roy McMillian please contact the Panola County Sheriff's Office at 903-693-0333.

Sheriff Kevin Lake

May 19, 2020 at 3:30 a.m.

May 19, 2020 at 3:30 a.m.

Update from Panola County Judge, LeeAnn Jones:


As of 3:30 am on May 19th

An additional five (5) positives which consists of three (3) nursing home residents and two (2) Public; plus four (4) nursing home employees

Total Cumulative Cases 185

Briarcliff 72 with 11 deaths
Panola Nursing Home 34 with 7 deaths
Public 62 with 3 deaths
Tyson 15
UT Health 2

Deaths 21

Briarcliff Recoveries 24
Panola Nursing Home Recoveries Unknown
Tyson Recoveries 10
Public Recoveries 8

Peace Officers Memorial, May 15, 2020

Peace Officers Memorial, May 15, 2020

The family of Chris Dickerson

Reported by Panola County Judge, LeeAnn Jones on May 17, 2020 at 10:00 am:


Total Cumulative Cases 176
Briarcliff 67
Panola NH 32
Public 60
Tyson 15
UT Health 2

Deaths 20
Briarcliff Recoveries 20
Tyson Recoveries 10
Public Recoveries 8

The UT Carthage Respiratory Clinic at 812 N. Daniels Street, Carthage, Texas (Dr. Royce Hill's old office) has updated hours of Monday through Thursday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Friday 8 a.m. to noon effective immediately. The respiratory clinic phone number is 903-694-4863.

Panola College announce plans for reopening

As the spring semester comes to a unique end at Panola College, the College is already making plans to carefully resume face-to-face instruction on August 19.

"The health and safety of Panola College students, faculty, and staff is always our first priority," said Dr. Greg Powell, Panola College president. "We want our students to enjoy the full college experience including face-to-face classes, sports, fine art events, and living on-campus. Our re-opening committee is working hard on ways to do this safely."

Panola College plans to reopen all locations to the public on June 15th following social distancing guidelines. The College will remain working remotely on Fridays throughout the summer to allow for deep cleaning each week. Most courses this summer will be held strictly online with the exception of a few courses that require hands-on experiences, such as cosmetology. Cosmetology services will remain closed to the public throughout the summer and all summer camps have been canceled including Kids College and athletic camps. Financial aid and student advising appointments are still encouraged to take place by phone and email whenever possible.

"Despite our plan to return to normal operations this fall, no one knows how the pandemic will progress through summer and into the fall, but our committee is preparing plans for multiple scenarios," stated Dr. Powell
"We know that being flexible will be important as the situation continues to evolve. It is our intention to balance a safe and healthy campus while maintaining a great college experience for our students. We miss the energy our students bring to Panola College and look forward to its return this fall."

The College will be reviewing the spring semester transition to online instruction and how the process could be improved in the future. Instructors will receive additional distance learning training and will be prepared to move online should another outbreak occur this fall.

Additional safety measures listed below will be put in place to help the College reopening:
•Face-to-face classes size will be smaller and more courses will be in a hybrid format this fall.
•Hand sanitizing and disinfectant wipe stations are being placed in high traffic areas throughout all buildings.
•Plexi glass shields are being installed between students and staff at many locations.
•Students, faculty, staff, and visitors to campus are encouraged to wear a face mask per CDC guidelines.
•Campus signage is being placed around campus to promote CDC guidelines, including wearing a mask, social distancing, washing your hands, and covering your cough.
•A hygiene package will be given to all students, faculty, and staff which will include a face mask, hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes at the beginning of the fall semester.
•Faculty and staff will be asked to complete a health screening.
•The entire college will be sanitizing on a nightly basis.
•Protocols are also being put into place should a student or employee test positive for COVID-19.

Safety precautions and protocols will be further developed and refined over the summer as the College closely monitors the situation and will follow the guidance from federal, state, and local health officials. More information may be found at

Panola College to receive $1,507,332 grant to assist students impacted by COVID-19

Panola College will receive a $1,507,332 federal grant to provide direct emergency cash to students, and to cover school expenses related to the coronavirus and COVID-19. The funding is available through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Half of the funding received will provide direct cash payments to students to help with housing, utilities, food, and other expenses they may have incurred during the coronavirus crisis. The application will be available on the Panola College website from April 27 to May 22, 2020.

Eligibility requirements, set by the U.S. Department of Education, are as follows:
•Be enrolled in at least 3 credit hours at Panola College as of March 13, 2020.
•Be enrolled in at least one face-to-face course as of March 13.
•Be eligible to apply for financial aid through FAFSA. (This excludes international, DACA, and dual credit students.)
•Must NOT be enrolled in high school - dual credit students do not qualify.
•Be a US citizen or eligible non-citizen.
•Must have a valid Social Security number.
•Male students must be registered with Selective Service.
•Must have a high school diploma, GED or have documentation of completion of high school in an approved home school setting.

The online application will be a simple form asking for name, student ID number, and current mailing address. The form will include boxes for applicants to check indicating what financial needs they have that are related to the coronavirus.

Students will have 30 days to complete and submit the form. Once the applications are verified and grant amounts are determined, the Panola College business office will send the funds directly to the students by debit card, direct deposit or check. Students may indicate their choice of fund delivery by logging into their Campus Connect accounts on the Panola College website.

"With this funding, we will be able to award individual relief grants," said Dr. Greg Powell, Panola College President. "The CARES Act will not only help our students, but the funding will also assist the College in expanding remote learning programs and identifying technology needs that will help us serve our students in the future."

Panola College recognized early the potential negative impact on students. On April 1, the Panola College Foundation announced a plan to provide emergency financial relief to students through grants from the Foundation.

"We were fortunate to already have the Panola College Foundation step up to provide the first wave of emergency relief to our students," said Jessica Pace, Director of Institutional Advancement. "Now the CARES Act Student Relief Fund will provide additional grant funds to help us implement a second wave of support to our students."

Beverly Eugene Brown, 92, passed away at his home in Carthage, surrounded by his loving children, on Saturday, April 4, 2020. He was preceded in death by his wife of 64 years, Joyce Ann; son-in-law, Dennis McLaughlin; and sister, Laura Wilson.

Bev was born on August 30, 1927, in Kilgore to the late Frank Beverly and Clyde Aten Brown. He was a lifelong resident of Northeast Texas, spending his early years in Jacksonville and teen years in Kilgore. He graduated from Kilgore High School in 1944, and then attended Texas A&M College. In 1945, he moved to Carthage and in 1948, married Joyce Ann Hooker.

Bev served as president of Texas Association of Broadcasters, which honored him as Pioneer Broadcaster of the Year in 1986. He served on the Executive Committee of the National Association of Broadcasters and as its Radio Board Chairman in 1986-1987. Bev built and managed the Carthage Cable Television System from 1973-1985. He was a founding member of Panola National Bank, and he was on its Board of Directors until his death.

Bev was active in the First United Methodist Church of Carthage and Rotary Club, where he was a Paul Harris Fellow. He served on numerous local boards and committees, several of which he chaired. He served 18 years on the Panola College Board of Trustees.

Bev worked 10 years in the timber industry, manufacturing baskets and rising to plant manager. In 1955, he began his 33 years career in radio on the staff at KGAS in Carthage. He became managing partner in 1957. In 1963, after a year in the U.S. Army during the Berlin Crisis, he became the manager of KOCA Radio in Kilgore. In 1965, he purchased KGAS, which he operated until retiring in 1988. At that time, he had been the voice of Carthage Bulldog Football for 30 years. After retirement, he remained active in broadcasting, writing and producing a weekly commentary, "Talking It Over," which was syndicated on several area radio stations. This popular program continued until shortly before his passing.

Bev was a sought after public speaker at service clubs and patriotic affairs. He was often invited to speak at Veterans' and Memorial Day observances and at school events.

Bev served in the Texas Army National Guard for 20 years, retiring as a Lt. Colonel of Artillery in 1968.

In the 1990's, Bev fulfilled a lifelong desire to play drums in a swing dance band. He was instrumental in forming and also managed the Sounds of Swing Orchestra composed of area musicians. Bev produced and marketed the band's 4 CD recordings. He was active in the band until Joyce Ann's health failed in 2005.

October 24, 1982, was designated "Bev Brown Day" by the City of Carthage. Over the years came other honors, among them the highest honor given to a non-mason, the Community Builders Award by the local Masonic Lodge on April 26, 2016.

In recognition of his lifelong dedication and service, which he always called his labor of love, Bev was honored in 2015, as Panola County Citizen of the Year, a fitting climax to his career.

He is survived by three children, Beverly Eugene (Gene) Brown, Jr. and wife Judy of Spring; Ginger McLaughlin of Carthage; James Gayland Brown and wife Julie of Maypearl; 7 grandchildren, Erin Brown of Austin; Chad Brown and wife Melissa of Austin; Blair Lamb and husband Lane of Ft. Worth; Lauren Franklin and husband Robert of Banks, Arkansas; Mark Patrick McLaughlin of Carthage; Kristen Brown of Dallas; and Dylan Brown of Dallas; and 4 great-grandchildren, Braden Mercer, Madisyn Franklin, Brandt Lamb, and Evan Brown.

"To everything there is a season..." Ecclesiastes 3:1

A private family graveside service will be held at Restland Memorial Park near Carthage with Bro. Freddy Mason officiating under the direction of Jimerson-Lipsey Funeral Home. A come and go viewing will be held from 12 noon until 5 p.m. on Sunday, April 5, 2020, at Jimerson-Lipsey Funeral Home Chapel. There will be a public memorial service at a later date

Due the current COVID-19 outbreak, everyone is encouraged to exercise good judgment and follow CDC guidelines with regard to large gatherings and social distancing. Should you choose to instead pay your respects in some private manner, the family respects your choice.

The family would like to extend a special thanks to Heart's Way Hospice and Alysha Cockerham for the loving care shown to Bev during his final days.

If desired, memorials may be made to the Carthage Education Foundation, #1 Bulldog Drive, Carthage, Texas 75633 or the First United Methodist Church, 201 South Shelby, Carthage, Texas 75633.

A guestbook may be signed online at

Per Panola County Judge, LeeAnn Jones, Panola County is under a Shelter in Place Order effective 11:59 p.m. on April 1, 2020.

Panola County Judge, LeeAnn Jones, has confirmed Panola County has its first confirmed case of COVID-19 / Coronavirus.

If you are in need of a physician, UT Health has a new Telemedicine line. Call 903-694-4892.

Press Release from Panola County Judge, LeeAnn Jones

Press Release from Panola County Judge, LeeAnn Jones

March 18, 2020

All UIL Activities Suspended Due to COVID-19

Updated information as of 3/16/2020 - 2:30 p.m.


Reward Offered

Reward Offered

From the Panola County Sheriff's Department:

This is an updated missing person poster for Lauren Thompson. Her family has now posted a $5,000 reward for information leading to the discovery of Lauren Thompson. No new information has been obtained in the past few weeks. We continue to follow-up on this case.

Panola College announces new hires and promotions

Panola College announces new hires and promotions

Panola College is proud to announce the following 2020 new hires and promotions (from left to right, top to bottom):
Lashira Allison, Part Time Clerk - College Store
Katie Atkinson, Part Time Library Assistant
Jovan Austin, Part Time Assistant Coach - Men's Basketball
Sarah Chaput, Instructor - Vocational Nursing
Yannin Contreras, Part Time Clerk - College Store
Holly Derrick, Electronic Resources Librarian
Wendy Fehner, Part Time Clerical - Workforce & Continuing Education
Kim Harris, Receptionist/Secretary - Marshall College Center
Gary Kelley, Accountant
Bruce Koch, Police Officer
Kade Lindsay, Communications & Social Media Coordinator
Rachelle McGrede, Accounts Payable Specialist
Andy Nixon, Police Officer
Ana Pestana De Oliveira, Part Time Assistant Coach - Women's Volleyball
Alma Ravenell, Part Time Librarian
Joshua Shen, Part Time Assistant Coach - Women's Basketball
Rickey Smith, Part Time Security Guard
Debby Snider, Part Time Secretary - SRTC
Veronica Wilkerson, Instructional Librarian
Carol Brightwell, Workforce Program Coordinator
Kasi Broussard, Financial Aid Counselor
Josi Cassity, College Store Clerk
Misty Coleman, Admissions/Records Office Coordinator
Jeremy Dorman, Director of Human Resources (effective January 2021)
Leslie Edelen, Registrar/Director of Admissions (effective January 2021)
Jo Lynn Field, Professor - Vocational Nursing
Julie Green, Professor/Academic Fieldwork Coordinator - OTA
Terrie King, Professor/Chair - OTA (effective February 2021)
Milagros Luna, Admissions/Records Office Specialist
Sharon Peace, Professor - Associate Degree Nursing
Danita Sampson, Advisor/Testing & Disability Services Associate Coordinator
Jaime Seegers, Secretary to Fiscal Services
Donna Singleton, Clinical Teaching Assistant - Associate Degree Nursing
Doug Snodgrass, Professor -Biology
Brooke Works, Accounts Receivable Specialist