Tag Archive for: Mississippi news


Years of recovery ahead for Rolling Fork, MS.

Nashville: Trans shooter kills 3 staff, 3 children at Christian school.

Israel: Netanyahu pauses judicial reforms after massive protests.



Years of recovery ahead for Rolling Fork, MS

Three days after a tornado tore through their town, shock remains the prevailing feeling in Rolling Fork in Sharkey County, MS. The twister, believed to be an EF4, tracked across four counties: Issaquena, Sharkey, Humphreys, and Holmes. It left 17 dead, out of 21 from the outbreak of tornados across the state (down from 25 after a revised count).

In Rolling Fork, a town of 2000 known as the birthplace of Blues legend Muddy Waters, the twister flattened an entire neighborhood. The few structures still on their foundations are damaged and many are unsafe. The storm even brought down one of the water towers. Survivors continue to comb the wreckage where their homes once stood looking for anything salvageable: shoes, clothing, the odd memento. 

Even volunteer organizations that have since arrived on scene, accustomed to the destructive aftermath of storms, seemed at a lost to describe it. Jourdan Hartshorn, the Mississippi coordinator for the volunteer organization United Cajun Navy, said “It’s bad out here. It’s literally devastation. Ground Zero”. United Cajun Navy President Todd Terrell said the organization’s volunteers on the ground likened the devastation to “Joplin or worse,” referring the 2011 tornado in Missouri that killed 161 people.

Emergency response

Yesterday, President Biden pledged federal funds to assist in the recovery effort. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) administrator Deanne Criswell visited the town on Sunday. Criswell said the FEMA’s immediate and greatest task was housing. Many of Rolling Fork’s inhabitants are staying in the homes of family nearby, while others have sought hotel rooms, the nearest of which are 30 miles away. The community was already experiencing a shortage of housing and high poverty. Sharkey County has a 35% poverty rate, compared to the 19% statewide average.

“We are going to have to rebuild this community,” Criswell said. “We are going to have to rebuild the homes – we want to make sure that people stay in this community. Everybody that I talked to said they want to live here, this is where home is. So we want to make sure that not just rebuilding the homes but making sure that these small businesses get back up and running, that we get the infrastructure back up and operational so people don’t leave.” 

Criswell said the recovery would be “definitely months and into years”.

Mississippi Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) has opened shelters in Rolling Fork, Belzoni and Amory, where another twister caused severe damage. The American Red Cross and other nonprofit organizations will be offering food.

How to help

In-state organization Volunteer Mississippi is urging private citizens not to self-deploy to Rolling Fork or other hardhit areas. The office will post opportunities to help at volunteermississippi.org “as needs become apparent.”

The United Cajun Navy is also calling for volunteers with trucks and trailers to pick up supplies at their hub in Baton Rouge, LA, to bring to Rolling Fork. Those wishing to volunteer, donate or request assistance, can visit UnitedCajunNavy.org.

Red Cross Mississippi says it currently has the supplies needed to support its response but will share information on collection sites on their Facebook page.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).


Nashville: Trans shooter kills 3 staff members and 3 children at Christian school

This morning, a shooter entered Covenant Presbyterian Church School with two assault-style weapons and a handgun. Three children and three staff members were gunned down in what authorities believe was a “targeted” shooting.  The victims have been identified as students Evelyn Dieckhaus, Hallie Scruggs, and William Kinney, all aged 9. The staff members were substitute teacher Cynthia Peak, 61, custodian Mike Hill, 61, and the school’s head Katherine Koonce, 60. Police arrived and fatally shot the shooter on the second floor of the school.

Authorities have identified the suspect as 28-year-old Audrey Elizabeth Hale of Nashville. The reports are confusing at this early stage, but it appears Hale identified as transgender and used he/him pronouns on social media. However, people who knew Hale, including lifelong friends and neighbors, refer to Hale as a “sweet” girl who was “a little quiet”. It has been confirmed that Hale was a former student at the school, which serves about 209 children from pre-school age to 6th grade. 

Police searched Hale’s home and found maps of the school and what they described as a “manifesto”. Hale had apparently identified a second target, not a school, but had decided against it because of the security in place at that location. Authorities have said they have a working theory as to the motive for the shooting but aren’t ready to release that information yet.  

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).



Israel: Netanyahu halts judicial reforms after massive protests

In Israel, a massive protest movement has been gaining steam in opposition to a raft of proposed judicial reforms. Last week, the Knesset (Israel’s parliament) passed the first of these reforms, designed to shield Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from corruption and bribery charges against him. Netanyahu’s religious right-wing coalition plans other reforms that would prevent the national courts from striking down laws passed by the Knesset that are too discriminatory or which violate human rights. 

A growing number of Israelis, as well as foreign allies, see the reform as jeopardizing Israel’s claim to democracy. The protest has also included members of Israel’s Defense Forces, many of whom have refused to report for duty. This worried Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, who believed the unrest would make Israel vulnerable. Gallant called on the government to reject the reforms. Netanyahu responded by sacking him.

Today, Israel’s largest trade union groups called a general strike which brought the country to a standstill. Hundreds of thousands of demonstrators blocked roads and clogged plazas but were largely peaceful. Their demonstration seems to have worked as Netanyahu announced he will be delaying the reforms until after Passover and offered dialogue with his opposition in the Knesset.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).




Please share any thoughts, comments or questions in the Comments section below!


Over half of Mississippians struggling to pay household bills, the most in the nation.

FAA seeks to address string of near-collisions at US airports.

Poland, Slovakia to send Soviet-era jets to Ukraine.



Over half of Mississippians struggling to pay household bills, the most in the nation

A recent Household Pulse Survey by the Census Bureau found that more than half of Mississippians (52.9%) are struggling to pay typical household bills. This is the highest percentage in the nation and the only one over 50%. Mississippi narrowly edges out neighboring Alabama which came in second at 49.7% and far exceeds the national average of 39.7%. 

Over that same period (the week of Feb. 4-13), Mississippi was 5th in the nation at 48.6% among states whose residents fear eviction or foreclosure in the next two months. Mississippians also led in the category of householders that were unable to pay an energy bill in full in the last 12 months with 30.5%.

Median household income is the lowest in the nation at $46,637, far below the national average of $70,784. Recent data shows that Mississippi has the highest poverty rate in the nation with 19.07%.

State Republicans suddenly remember this is an election year

During the pandemic, states received millions in federal dollars to help people get through the economic downturn. Despite the great need, average Mississippians received far less help than people in other states. Instead, the state government decided to use this windfall to push for income tax cuts.

While income tax reduction is popular in the state (62%), the suspension of the state’s 7% grocery tax is far more popular (74%). Mississippi is one of the few states to tax groceries and has the highest rate of any of them. Grocery taxes disproportionately burden the poor while income tax cuts disproportionately benefit the wealthy. But the state’s Republican leadership hasn’t considered using the state’s surplus to cut grocery taxes, despite rising food costs. 

State legislators recently narrowly rejected proposals that would have eliminated income taxes in the state. This means the stalled bills likely won’t move forward in this year’s legislative session. However, House Ways and Means Chairman Trey Lamar said the bills’ failure was “more of a timing issue with some of these representatives as opposed to any real opposition to income tax elimination. Coming off the heels of last year’s income tax bill, and this being an election year, there are a few that would just prefer to wait a little longer before making further cuts”.

Reeves believes life begins at conception, but when does it end?

In a rare win for public welfare in the state, Gov. Reeves has just signed a bill to extend Medicaid coverage to new mothers and babies from 60 days after birth to 12 months.

Mississippi has some of the worst rates of infant mortality and maternal mortality in the country. Until Reeves signed this latest bill, Mississippi was the only state in the nation that had neither extended Medicaid coverage for new mothers nor expanded Medicaid eligibility overall. 

Reeves touted expanding Medicaid coverage for new moms and babies to 12 months as being in line with the state’s pro-life stance. However, Reeves was quick to remind us he still opposes expanding eligibility for Medicaid for low-income families under Obamacare. Maybe Reeves thinks life ends at 12 months?


FAA seeks to address string of near-collisions at US airports

So far in 2023, there have been at least nine near-collisions of commercial airplanes at eight US airports. That number may seems small in light of the fact that there are about 45,000 flights taking off each day. But when you consider the hundreds of lives put at risk each time, even one near-miss is unacceptable.

The circumstances vary in each case, but in some instances, the near-miss was the result of air traffic control clearing two planes to use the same runway. This was the case in the most dramatic near-collision in Austin, TX, in which a FedEx cargo plane came within 100 feet of a Southwest Airlines passenger plane. Controllers had cleared the FedEx plane to land on the same runway where the Southwest Airlines flight was taking off. In this case, it was the quick thinking of the FedEx pilot that averted disaster, rather than any action by air traffic control.  

On Wednesday, FAA held an emergency summit this week, its first in 14 years, to discuss the issue. The panel of aviation experts cited low staffing numbers at the FAA and a lack of experience among new hires as a major factor. The staffing issues come at the same time that US demand for air travel is surging, making accidents and near-accidents more likely.

It may also be significant that 8 of the 9 incidents took place after an outage of the FAA’s automated NOTAM (Notice to Air Missions) system which notifies pilots of potential hazards they may encounter during their flights. The NOTAM system went dark late in the night of Jan. 10 and grounded all flights in the US for two hours the following morning. An investigation found that the outage was the result of FAA contractors deleting files.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).



Poland, Slovakia send Soviet-era jets to Ukraine

After nearly a year of requests from Kiev, Poland yesterday agreed to send about a dozen Soviet-era MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine. Today, Slovakia followed suit, promising 13 MiG-29s. At the time of Russia’s invasion last year, Ukraine had several dozen MiG-29s that it had retained following the collapse of the Soviet Union. It’s not clear how many of these remain in service over a year later.

According to Slovakia’s Defense Minister, the European Union is offering Slovakia 200 million euros ($213 million) in compensation for giving the jets to Ukraine. Slovakia will also receive $745 million in unspecified arms from the US, the minister said. There’s no reporting on whether Poland is receiving similar compensation for its pledge. However, Poland’s Defense Minister did mention that they would be replacing their MiGs with South Korean and American-made fighter jets.

The White House says it was informed of Poland’s decision before it was announced. Biden has long been under pressure to give Ukraine F-16s, a request the US has so far steadfastly refused. National Security advisor John Kirby neither endorsed nor condemned Poland and Slovakia’s decision, but said it would have no bearing on the US position on sending F-16s. 

Unlike F-16s, Ukraine’s fighter pilots require no additional training to fly MiG-29s. But maintaining them may pose a problem. Slovakia had previously grounded its MiG-29 fleet due to difficulties obtaining spare parts and the departure of Russian maintenance workers.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).



Please share any thoughts, comments or questions in the Comments section below!



In October 2022, a young Black man went missing after calling to telling his mother white men were chasing him in three trucks. When his body was later found, authorities said they didn’t suspect foul play. His family disagrees. What really happened in Taylorsville, MS?



Black man who said he was chased by whites later found decapitated; Sheriff says ‘no foul play’

Rasheem Carter, 25, a welder from Fayette in Jefferson County, MS, went missing on Oct. 2, 2022, near Taylorsville, MS, in Smith County, where he had undertaken contract work. Carter had previously texted his mother, Tiffany Carter, saying he’d had an altercation with someone at work. The text named a person and said “if anything happens… he’s responsible for it. … He got these guys wanting to kill me”.

On Oct. 1, Rasheem called his mother, telling her that a group of white men hurling racial slurs were chasing him in three trucks. Tiffany told her son to go to the police, believing they would protect him. But that was the last she heard from him.

Rasheem’s skull was found detached from his body. The dome of the skull was removed during autopsy. Photos were released by the family. 

When Rasheem’s remains were found on Nov. 2, dismembered and decapitated, in a wooded area near Taylorsville, Tiffany was in no doubt what happened to her son. But a day later, Smith County Sheriff Joel Houston posted on Facebook that there was “no reason to believe foul play was involved”.  

Rasheem’s remains were found scattered over two acres, and parts of him are still missing. The delay in finding his remains complicates the picture significantly, as there was evidence of animal predation. When a body lies undiscovered for months, animal activity can scatter remains over a wide area. 

An autopsy report by the Mississippi State Medical Examiner’s Office noted injuries. However the report states that the condition of the remains when they were recovered make it difficult to determine when and in what sequence those injuries occurred. For this reason, the examiner was unable to establish a cause and manner of death with any confidence. 

Ben Crump calls for federal investigation

What we have is a Mississippi lynching,” famed civil rights attorney Ben Crump told reporters on Tuesday. Crump, representing the Carter family, is calling for a federal probe into Rasheem’s death. During the press conference, Crump said, “This doesn’t seem like the act of just one individual. It kind of lines up with what Tiffany said. There was a lynch mob of three trucks chasing her son before he went missing.”

“One thing is for certain … This was not a natural killing. This was not a natural death,” Crump said. “This represents a young man who was killed”. Crump and the Carter family believe that the Sheriff’s conclusion that there was no foul play doesn’t stand up to scrutiny, given the other circumstances surrounding the case.

“This was a nefarious act. This was an evil act,” Crump said. “Somebody murdered Rasheem Carter, and we cannot let them get away with this.”

“Nothing to hide” says Sheriff

Carter was in Taylorsville for short-term contracting work. His mother Tiffany says Rasheem was saving money to reopen his seafood restaurant. The restaurant, named for Rasheem’s 7-year-old daughter Cali, had closed during the pandemic. But at the work site, Carter had a disagreement with at least one of his co-workers and fled.

Rasheem had twice visited the Taylorsville Police Department in the lead up to his disappearance. It was around that time Carter texted his mother indicating he was being targeted by at least one individual.

Despite this, Sheriff Houston initially stood by his department’s conclusion that there was no foul play. Earlier evidence “didn’t suggest anything,” he said. However, Houston has since backtracked following a backlash, saying foul play hadn’t been ruled out. “Nothing is being swept under the rug,” Houston said. “There’s nothing to hide.”

“Running for his life”

Carter’s family has also shared an image from a deer trail camera from the day Rasheem went missing. Carter’s mother says she believes her son was hiding from someone, and “running for his life”. Sheriff Houston said the department had reviewed trail camera footage and didn’t find evidence of anyone else in the area.

After months of refusing to share any details of his department’s investigation, either with the public or apparently with the family, Houston gave an interview to NBC. During the interview, he shared details of leads that had been followed and other information about the investigation.

Houston said the department had interviewed “everybody involved” with Carter’s last job. This includes four to five people Carter had mentioned to his mother. These individuals were “ruled out” as suspects in Carter’s death, Houston said, by phone records and GPS coordinates showing that they were at another job site nearly 100 miles away from Taylorsville when Carter was last seen alive.

“His whole demeanor had changed”

A trail camera captured an image of Rasheem on the afternoon of Oct. 2, 2022.

According to Houston, Carter’s colleagues and supervisor said in interviews that Carter “had not been himself” during the week before he went missing. “They said his whole demeanor had changed, they weren’t sure what was going on,” Houston said. “They just said he kept to himself more. He usually joked around, and in the last week or so they weren’t able to do that”.

Houston confirmed that Carter had “a couple of verbal altercations” with at least one co-worker. However, the Sheriff didn’t say what led to the altercation or whether the conflict might have prompted Carter’s change in behavior.

Having ruled out the prime suspects, Houston submitted search warrants to Google, starting in mid-November. Houston hoped this might reveal whether any devices pinged in the area where Carter’s remains were found around the time he went missing. “It’s a last-straw-type deal to determine if anyone else was with him or not,” he said. “It’s not uncommon to use this tool.” But the department has had to revise and resubmit this request several times, most recently last week.

The sheriff also said he would welcome the Justice Department’s involvement, saying he wants justice for Carter’s family “just as much as the family does.”

Carter’s family has dismissed any suggestion that Rasheem was under the influence of any substances at the time of his disappearance. Tiffany Carter also says her son had no history of mental illness that could account for the change in behavior. “I just know what my son told me,” Tiffany said. “I don’t believe anything [police] say. It’s lies after lies.”


Please share any thoughts, comments or questions in the Comments section below!


Majority Black Jackson may soon have courts, police run by majority white state government. State also moves to seize control of the city’s water system- and hundreds of millions in federal funds.


Majority Black Jackson may soon have courts, police run by majority white state government

Local residents and politicians in Jackson are outraged by recent proposals from the state legislature. Many see proposals for a new court system and expansion of Capitol Police jurisdiction as a paternalistic white takeover of a majority Black city. Others, including Jackson’s Democratic Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba, accuse state officials of attempting to set up a city within a city in Jackson – one white and affluent, the other Black and poor – tantamount to apartheid. 

Separate but equal judiciary

The first proposal would allow the state’s chief justice and attorney general (both white, neither from Jackson) to appoint judges and prosecutors for a new court system within Jackson. This would be a separate system from Jackson’s existing court system, whose judges and prosecutors are elected, which would supersede the elected court’s jurisdiction in parts of the city. Its judges would not have to live in Jackson, or even in Hinds County.

The white state legislators championing the bill (only one of which is from Jackson) say the new court would simply supplement the existing court and help to alleviate a case backlog. Critics say it is a naked power grab from the city’s elected Democratic government and its largely Black citizenry.

This bill initially passed in the statehouse earlier this month and is still under debate in the state Senate. Mayor Lumumba characterized the bill as “plantation politics”. He said of the legislators who voted for the bill, “I was surprised that they came half-dressed because they forgot to wear their hoods“. 

“If we allow this type of legislation to stand in Jackson, Mississippi, it’s a matter of time before it will hit New Orleans. It’s a matter of time before it hits Detroit, or wherever we find our people,” Lumumba said.

Policing a city within a city

The second proposal would expand the patrol of the Capitol Police force, which currently only patrols the Capitol district and state government buildings. The proposal would expand the bailiwick of the state-controlled Capitol Police to include wealthy (white) residential and shopping areas at the city’s heart. Recently, an amendment to the bill proposed giving Capitol Police jurisdiction over the entire city of Jackson.

Again, proponents of this proposal say that Capitol Police would not replace Jackson’s understaffed police force, but supplement it. However, this expanded district already has a much lower crime rate than the rest of Jackson. Critics see the move as an attempt to cordon off an affluent white-dominated power center, using intensified police presence as a show of force to intimidate Black residents.

Some fear this is the beginning of a return to the bad old days of segregation. It doesn’t help that the Capitol police have had several violent interactions with Black people in the past year. This includes two deadly encounters with Black motorists.

State takeover of Jackson’s water (and federal funds)

After a series of recent collapses, Jackson’s water system is currently under the control of a federal manager. But a third proposal seeks to transfer ownership of the system to a nine-member regional governing board to oversee Jackson’s water system. Again, most of the members would be appointed by Republican state leaders.

Locals are skeptical to say the least. Gov. Tate Reeves denied state financial aid requested by Jackson’s municipal leadership time after time. Reeves was so proud of this fact he even campaigned on it.

It wasn’t until the federal government pledged hundreds of millions of dollars to addressing the city’s water crisis that state leaders showed the slightest interest in helping. Skepticism is an understandable reaction. Reeves and his cronies don’t exactly have a stellar reputation when it comes to managing funds entrusted to them by the federal government to help disadvantaged Mississippians.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).



Please share any thoughts, comments or questions in the Comments section below!



Suspect in custody after mass shooting in Tate County, MS.

Worried residents see cover-up in Ohio train derailment.



Suspect in custody after mass shooting in Tate County, MS

Richard Dale Crum, 52, has been identified as the suspect. Crum’s ex-wife was among those killed.

Six people have been fatally shot and another injured by a suspect in Arkabutla, MS, in Tate County, a town of about 300 people. The suspect has been identified as Richard Dale Crum, 52. Crum’s ex-wife is among the slain. Crum is in custody and there are no other suspects at large. Authorities haven’t identified any of the other victims.

The story is developing and details of how the crimes unfolded are still coming to light. Tate County Sheriff Brad Lance said he believes the shooting began in a store where one person was killed. The shooter then  drove to a nearby home where he fatally shot a woman and injured her fiancee. After that, the shooter arrived at a home on Arkabutla Dam Road and shot and killed two people there. Authorities believe that the suspect resided at the Arkabutla Dam Road location.

Following the Arkabutla Dam Road incident, a Tate County deputy spotted a car that fit the suspect’s description. After unsuccessfully attempting to get the driver to stop, the deputy gave chase. 

The shooter then pulled into the driveway of another nearby home where authorities apprehended him. There authorities found the last two victims dead, one in a car and one in the roadway.

This is the second deadly mass shooting in Mississippi this month. On Feb. 12, 5 people were injured and one killed in Louisville, MS, in Winston County. Four teens and one adult are in custody in connection with that incident.

This is the 81st mass shooting this year in the US, just 48 days into 2023. This count includes all incidents in which 4 or more people are killed or injured in a shooting.

Click here for the full story (opens in new tab).


Worried residents see cover-up in Ohio train derailment

Yesterday, Jennifer Homendy, head of the National Transportation Safety Board, posted a series of tweets accusing the media and members of the public of spreading “misinformation” about the Feb. 3 train derailment in East Palestine, OH. Homendy’s lengthy Twitter thread began with “First, a message to the community…then a plea to those spreading misinformation”. 

She continued: “To everyone affected: know that @NTSB is working vigorously to understand what caused this train derailment — so it never happens again”.

“…Anyone speculating about what happened, didn’t happen, or should’ve happened is misleading a suffering community – PLEASE STOP SPREADING MISINFORMATION. For example…

“Some are saying the ECP (electronically controlled pneumatic) brake rule, if implemented, would’ve prevented this derailment. FALSE – here’s why…

“The ECP braking rule would’ve applied ONLY to HIGH HAZARD FLAMMABLE TRAINS. The train that derailed in East Palestine was a MIXED FREIGHT TRAIN containing only 3 placarded Class 3 flammable liquids cars.

“This means even if the rule had gone into effect, this train wouldn’t have had ECP brakes.”


Homendy’s fraught response only begs another obvious question. How or why was this train, carrying 5 cars of vinyl chloride, a highly toxic and flammable material, not classified as a “high hazard flammable train”?

“Don’t ask questions”

Tracey Hoffman, who lives two-tenths of a mile from the derailment, is one of many concerned East Palestine residents. Hoffman has stopped using her tap water due to contamination fears. She’s also joined one of several class action lawsuits against Norfolk Southern, who operated the rerailed train.

Despite assurances from the EPA that the water is safe to drink and that the fumes residents are smelling aren’t dangerous, locals continue to report troublesome symptoms. These include rashes, burning throats and eyes, and diarrhea. Independent analysts have expressed doubt that the the environmental sampling conducted is sufficient to be conclusive about the danger to residents. But when residents seek answers, Hoffman bluntly described the response from authorities: “It’s been, ‘Don’t ask questions'”

Charges dropped against arrested reporter

Last week, NewsNation reporter Evan Lambert-McMichael was arrested at a news conference in East Palestine, held by Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine and other officials to update information on the train derailment. Bodycam footage shows officers approaching Lambert-McMichael and asking him to stop reporting, claiming it was “too loud”. An argument then breaks out, and Ohio National Guard’s adjutant general, Maj. Gen. John Harris, approaches and pushes Lambert-McMichael.

Lambert-McMichael was charged with resisting arrest and criminal trespass. Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost announced Wednesday that those charges would be dropped. Yost wrote, “The reporter was lawfully present at a press conference called by the Governor of the state. His conduct was consistent with the purpose of the event and his role as a reporter.”

Gov. DeWine said of the incident “This reporter who was reporting live from the back of the room never should have been asked to stop, never should have been told to be quiet. That was a big, big mistake. And you know, the person who did that, I’ve explained to them and I’m sure that he’ll never, never do that again”.



Please share any thoughts, comments or questions in the Comments section below!

Henry Keith Swain, 75, died Sunday, January 29, 2023, with his wife and two children by his side. He was born in Itawamba County on June 26, 1947, to Buster and Eloise Swain. A resident of Starkville, he was a devoted husband and father, lifelong outdoorsman, and dedicated civil servant.
He graduated Itawamba Agricultural High school in 1965. He attended Itawamba Community College and Mississippi State University, where he received a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. He joined the Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) in 1970. Throughout a celebrated career, he held positions in the New Albany and Starkville Project Offices and at the MDOT District Office in Tupelo. He retired with 39 years of service in 2009. He later worked for Neel-Schaffer Engineering Consultants in Columbus for several years.
He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Nona Irwin Swain; son, Brad Swain of Brandon; daughter, Stacey Swain of Collierville, Tennessee; brother, David Swain of Fulton; sister Kay Mann of Gulfport; mother-in-law, Maev Irwin of Myrtle; and a number of nieces and nephews.
Pallbearers are Richard Hardy, Virgil Rogers, Bill Jamieson, Paul Swindoll, Charles Purdon and Clayton McHann.
There will be a visitation for Mr. Swain from 1:00-3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, February 1, 2023 at Welch Funeral Home in Starkville, MS. There will also be a visitation from 1:00-2:00 p.m. on Friday, February 3, 2023 at United Funeral Home in New Albany, with the service immediately following. Brother Jackie Gray and Brother Donald Scheuman will officiate. A graveside ceremony at Glenfield Memorial Cemetery in New Albany will follow the service.
You can leave the family a condolence at: www.welchfuneralhomes.com.

Please follow the funeral home link for further information as it becomes available



Friday, February 3, 2023
4:00 PM – 6:00 PM

St. Paul United Methodist Church
502 North Spring Street
Tupelo, MS 38801


Saturday, February 4, 2023
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM

St. Paul United Methodist Church
502 North Spring Street
Tupelo, MS 38801

Please follow the funeral home link for further information as it becomes available, or call 662-534-5071 for more information.

Blue Springs – Rita Ann Kidd Dillard, 74, passed away on Monday, January 30, 2023 at Sanctuary Hospice in Tupelo. She was born November 23, 1948 in Toccopola, MS to Theron and Ozell Tallant Kidd. She was retired. She loved taking care of her grandchildren and her great grandchildren. She was an active member of Parks Baptist Church.
Funeral services will be at 2:00p.m. Wednesday, February 1, 2023 at Parks Baptist Church with Bro. Scott Duley officiating. Visitation will be from 12:00p.m. until service time. United Funeral Service is honored to be entrusted with these arrangements.
She is survived by one son, Allen Pannell of Blue Springs; two sisters, Ruby Stout (James) and Doris Clayton, both of New Albany; one brother, Buddy Kidd (Brenda) of Blue Springs; two grandchildren, Morgan Campbell (Will) and Zack Pannell; and two great grandchildren, Jax Campbell and Grey Campbell.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Dean Dillard; a son, Greg Pannell; and two sisters, Jane Bell and Linda Pearl Bedford.
For online condolences and guest registry, please visit www.unitedfuneralservice.com

Shane Clark Christensen has roped his last steer and gone to that “Happy Hunting Ground”. Clark, a nationally known rodeo steer wrestler, cattle broker and cattleman died Sunday, January 29, 2023 at North Miss. Medical Center in Tupelo from complications of a Heart Attack suffered less than a month ago. He had just turned 60 years old on January 8th. Clark was born in Biloxi on January 8, 1963 to the late Clifton Cooper Flurry and Gerry Lawrence Corso. He was raised by his adoptive dad, Don Christensen. He and the family moved to Sturgis, MS. where he attended elementary, Junior High and graduated from Sturgis High School. Clark attended MSU and was a prized member of the MSU Rodeo Team. A man never scared of work, Clark was a cattleman, cattle broker and rodeo hero all his life. He traveled to rodeos around the country where he became known by all Cowboys as one of the best steer wrestlers ever. About 30 years ago, he settled in Northeast Miss. where he became a great friend to so many. He ran cattle on Eden’s Farms in Okolona and became a highly sought after cattle buyer and herdsman. He loved the arena, his horses and the fellowship of fellow rodeo/cattlemen. In 1979, Clark was the first Mississippian and the first to ever east of the Mississippi win the prestigious Salana, California Rodeo buckle for superior cattle wrestling. Only two others have achieved this honor since. A big man with a bigger personality and always full of himself, he was known for his one liners, his cowboy philosophy and his penchant for shaking a little ice with cowboys and friends. Clark married Susan Parker on Jan. 31, 2010 and she survives. They enjoyed visiting the beach and deep sea fishing.

A service celebrating his life will be held at 2 PM Thursday, Feb. 2, 2023 at Green Valley Baptist Church, 265 Old Airport Road, Pontotoc, MS with Bro. Tommy Kelly officiating. Visitation will be from 4 PM-7PM Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2023 at Holland Funeral Directors, 5281 Cliff Gookin Blvd., Tupelo, MS 38801, and from 1 PM-service time on Thursday at Green Valley Baptist Church. Burial will be in Pontotoc City Cemetery. Holland Funeral Directors is honored to be serving the family.

Clark is survived by his wife, Susan Christensen of Pontotoc and her family; his son, Cooper Christesen (Shelby) of Houlka; his bonus daughters, Jessica Goggins and Lana Janes (John) all of Pontotoc; his grandchildren, Oakley Jane, Heido Lynn, Lexi, Jailen, Mia, Mya, Airial, Kara, Kaiden, Gatlin, Peyton and JD; his sisters, Donya Adams of Collierville, TN and Georgia Dea Chrsitensen of Jackson, MS. ; his brothers, Cody Christensen of Mathiston and Tippy Flurry of Vancleave, MS.; a host of friends locally and around the country. He was preceded in death by his father, Clifton Flurry.

Pallbearers are his son, Cooper Christensen, Sam Whitel Chuck Robinson, Jason Lancaster, John Toole, Russ Gould, Logan Fowler, John Collums and Dawson Adams. Honorary pallbearers are nephews and buddies, Darren, Dayton, Jailen, Cody, Casey, Paxton, John and Dennis.

Condolences may be e mailed to hollandfuneraldirectors@comcast.net

Please follow the funeral home link for further information as it becomes available, or call 662-534-5071 for more information.

John Albert Ware, 80, transitioned on Friday, January 27, 2023, at Sanctuary Hospice House, in Tupelo, MS.

Visitation will be Saturday, February 4, 2023, 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., at Serenity Funeral Home Chapel, Pontotoc, MS.

Services will be held on Sunday, February 5, 2023, at New Salem M.B. Church, 236 Salem Lane, Pontotoc, MS 38863.

Burial will take place at Pontotoc City Cemetery.

Serenity Funeral Home of Pontotoc, MS, is in charge of arrangements.