Pitt State football gives Kansas Special Olympics athletes “game-day” experience

PITTSBURG, Kan. – Pittsburg State football partnered with Kansas Special Olympics on Friday morning to host “Victory Day” at Carnie Smith Stadium.

The event gives the Special Olympics the Pitt State football “game-day” experience – and an opportunity to work with Pitt State players and coaches.

Each athlete got their own jersey and walked the “Gorilla Walk” into Carnie Smith Stadium, before hitting the field for one-on-one work with players – completing drills and even scoring a few touchdowns.

“Some of these kids will never get another opportunity like this again,” says Pitt State wide receiver Bryce Murphy, “I’m glad we get to put on something like this to give them a day to be a superhero, or whatever they think they want to be.”

“We just want to put a smile on their face and let them enjoy the day and have fun,” says Pitt State head football coach Brian Wright, “It’s such a special day, not only for the participants, but also for the team. Our guys get the opportunity to build some lifelong relationships with some kids that don’t have the opportunity to play football.”

MSSU introduces Rob Mallory as new Athletic Director

Missouri southern introduces Rob Mallory as the school’s new Athletic Director at a press conference today. Mallory is the 6th Athletic Director in school history. He comes over from Kentucky Wesleyan where he previously served as Athletic Director before being promoted to Vice President of Intercollegiate Athletics. Mallory’s first official day on the job at Southern will be July 1st.

Kansas woman charged in school parking lot assault

KANSAS CITY, Kan. – A woman suspected of running over another mother in a Kansas middle school parking lot during a fight involving students and parents was charged Friday with six counts arising from the incident.

Tyla Jack, 39, was charged with two counts of aggravated battery, assault on a law enforcement officer, battery on a law enforcement officer, criminal threat and leaving the scene of an accident, Wyandotte County District Attorney Mark Dupree said in a news release.

Jack turned herself in Thursday afternoon. She was accused of running over and critically injuring another woman Tuesday afternoon in the parking lot of Carl Bruce Middle School.

Police said the confrontation started with a fight between two girls at the school. After school officials broke up the fight, they called the girls’ parents, who showed up on the scene and made matters worse, police said.

As the mother of one of the girls walked away to leave, police allege that Jack ran over her and dragged her. Jack then fled the scene.

No students were hurt in the altercation.

The woman who was hit was taken to an area hospital with serious injuries.

Kansas House member arrested after incident at local school

TOPEKA, Kan. – A Kansas House member was arrested for possible misdemeanor battery in what authorities said Friday was an incident involving a student while he was substitute teaching at a public school in his hometown.

Republican Rep. Mark Samsel was booked Thursday into the local county jail and released on a $1,000 bond. His arrest came after a student reported an incident Wednesday at school in his hometown of Wellsville, a town of about 1,700 people some 55 miles (89 kilometers) southwest of Kansas City.

Samsel, 36, has yet to be formally charged with a crime but has a first appearance scheduled in district court for May 19 in Franklin County, said County Attorney Brandon Jones. Kansas law says battery is either causing bodily harm to another person or physical contact with someone else “done in a rude, insulting or angry manner,” and is punished by up to six months in jail.

Franklin County Sheriff Jeffrey Richards declined to discuss the details of the incident behind Samsel’s arrest. Samsel did not answer a phone call – a message could not be left for him, and he did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.

A parent of Wellsville students provided The Associated Press with videos she said were shot by students. One shows a noisy class, with Samsel grabbing a boy, pushing him against a wall and telling him, “I could put the wrath of God on you right now,” before the boy breaks free and runs away, yelling.

The parent, Jessica Roberts, a mother of four, said her son showed her the videos in a social media group chat and she posted on social media about Samsel, asking whether others were concerned about his behavior.

Roberts said in an interview that Samsel was in a position of authority and, “at no point is it appropriate to be off-the-wall with children.”

The Kansas City Star reported that it had seen videos recorded by students that showed Samsel talking about suicide, sex, masturbation, God and the Bible.

Roberts also shared a Snapchat post from Samsel saying the incident was “all planned,” saying he wanted to “SEND A MESSAGE about art, mental health, teenage suicide, how we treat our educators and one another.”

“To who? Parents,” he posted. “Very simple – EXACTLY what God planned. The kids were in on it.”

Richards said he didn’t know about the Snapchat post and added, “There was nothing staged about our investigation – I can tell you that.”

Samsel also has been a referee for the association that oversees middle and high school sports in Kansas. He was first elected to the House in 2018 and reelected last year.

Wellsville school Superintendent Ryan Bradbury said without naming Samsel that the substitute teacher involved in the Wednesday incident is no longer working for the district.

The top three leaders of the Kansas House’s Republican majority said they were “gathering as much information as we can.”

Samsel is the third Kansas lawmaker to face legal problems this year.

Fellow Republicans ousted Sen. Gene Suellentrop of Wichita as Senate majority leader earlier this month after he was charged with drunken driving and a felony charge of attempting to elude law enforcement for driving the wrong way on a highway in Topeka.

And Democratic state Rep. Aaron Coleman, of Kansas City, was warned by a House committee in writing about abusive behavior toward girls and young women before his election last year. He reached a legal agreement in January with the woman who managed his primary opponent’s campaign to end an anti-stalking court order against him.

Weekend Blog: When will we see severe weather? -Doug

Good Friday evening!  We made it to another weekend.  I hope you have enjoyed the fantastic weather that we have had today.  It looks pretty good on Saturday as well.  Even though we will see the clouds increasing, a great day.

High temps around 80, so a great day.  Clouds increase for us Saturday night.  We could even get a couple showers in here late.  Lets look at our next storm system.

You can see our Sunday wave lifting in, but right behind it across the Rockies, our next wave for Monday pushes in.  Lets look at Sunday first.

On Sunday, we will see some scattered thundershowers.  It doesn’t look like they will be severe at this time.

On Monday the next wave rolls in.  A cold front will slide in and we will have a severe threat during the afternoon for a few thunderstorms.

So lets look at our severe weather threats.

You can see our threats next week on Monday and then Saturday.  They really go up on the 9th and 10th, also the 12th.  That third week could be a doozy.  16th-18th and then again on the 20th.  Lets keep watching and see how this plays out.  A lot of ingredients have to come together perfectly for us to get severe weather.

Long range forecast is below,




May 9th-May 15th:  Next system in with a severe threat on Sunday, Monday and Wednesday. The rest of the week looks pretty nice until thunderstorms return on Saturday.

May 16th-May 22nd:  A warm active week with severe threats on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.

May 23rd-May 29th: We’ll go from warm temperatures Sunday & Monday to a mild stretch for the middle of the week and back to warm temperatures by the weekend. We’ll watch for a severe threat for Sunday through Tuesday, showers on Wednesday and another chance for severe weather on Saturday the 29th.

May 30th-June 5th: We’ll bounce between mild and warm temperatures to start the week before a mild stretch kicks in for Wednesday and Thursday. We should be warm for Friday and mild for Saturday. T-storms are possible for Sunday, Tuesday and Friday followed by rain chances on Saturday.

June 6th-June 12th: Temperatures look mild for Sunday before we turn warmer for Monday & Tuesday. After a mild Wednesday, we’ll be warm for Thursday before we heat up for the weekend. We’ll watch for t-storms on Monday and Tuesday before a severe threat returns on Saturday.

June 13th-June 19th: With the exception of a mild Friday, we’ll mainly be warm for this week. We’ll watch for rain chances on Sunday, t-storms on Tuesday, strong to severe t-storms on Wednesday and another shot for t-storms on Thursday.

June 20th-June 26th: The week starts hot before we back down to warm temperatures for Wednesday through Friday. We should turn hot again for Saturday. We’ll watch for t-storm chances on Tuesday and Thursday.

Scammon celebrates new event center

SCAMMON, Ks. – Scammon, Kansas is a town with around 600 residents and quite of few of them could be found at the hottest Friday night ticket in town.

A building in the heart of downtown was originally a restaurant, but after going dormant for 5 years, it’s now up and running as the town’s new event center thanks to owner Jeff Sandness.

“Well, I’ve always liked Scammon. I think it’s a special little town in the area as little towns go,” said Sandness.

Attendees got to enjoy food from Chicken Annie’s and a Scammon favorite Josie’s while also enjoying drink specials and live music. Sandness says that’s just a taste of what’s to come.

“We’ve already booked some weddings for this summer. We have a pancake feed planned. We have a brunch planned and look to do quite a bit of live music,” said Sandness.

And that’s music to the ears of many Scammon and other nearby residents who have something new to do in their own backyards.

“I live four blocks away. I can walk down here because it’s close. We don’t have to go out of town, so I’m really going to enjoy it,” said Scammon resident Dianna Groves.

COVID-19 survivor celebrated upon return home

JOPLIN, Mo. –After being on life support for months, surviving a stroke, and relying on a feeding tube, Jenn Parks is ready to start living life again.

The Joplin resident contracted Covid-19 in November and suffered severe symptoms.

“She was on a ventilator for three months and she was in the…intensive care for I think…since November she was in intensive care. They didn’t think she’d make it,” said Jackie Meneses, with God’s Resort.

The fact that she survived a case of Covid-19 this severe, is nothing short of a miracle.

“She didn’t know if she was gonna walk, she didn’t know what was gonna happen…we’re all amazed, you know not that when you pray things don’t happen. but it was just such a miracle that she was able to do as well as she’s done,” Meneses said. 

Now, she’s back home for the first time since November. To commemorate this day, friends, family, and staff from God’s Resort surprised the survivor at her home with signs and prayers.

“It’s wonderful, I couldn’t have done it without, each one of these people sent me cards, and I knew that they cared…without people praying for me, and without them, I wouldn’t be where I’m at today,” Parks said. 

She said her loved ones were told she had a low chance of surviving at all.

“It was rough, they didn’t think I was gonna, the doctors told em’ I wasn’t gonna live, to give up on me, but my mom didn’t give up, and my church family wouldn’t give up.”

After leaving the ICU, Parks was sent to a nursing home to begin her journey to recovery.

“It was a point in my life which I didn’t think I’d ever walk out of the nursing home. I didn’t think I’d ever be able to walk.”

Now, she’s working toward her goal of being able to fully walk using a walker, and eventually, to get back to normal life

“To drive, cause my driver’s license on 11/11/2020 expired and I was supposed to get a new driver’s license..ultimately I wanna go back to work…I don’t wanna be on disability I wanna work,” Parks said.