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Rusty Marks

Staff writer
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Locals see U.S.-Cuba thaw as good sign


Some West Virginians with ties to Cuba see good things in a partial thaw in relations between the United States and the tiny Caribbean nation 90 miles off the Florida coast.

“I’m delighted,” sa...

Commission appoints new member to Kanawha County Solid Waste Authority


Members of the Kanawha County Commission have appointed county economic development specialist Dave Armstrong to replace Kasey Russell on the Kanawha County Solid Waste Authority.

Russell, who had been chairwoman o...

Tackett moves to drop Coonskin name change


Kanawha County Parks and Recreation Commission Chairman Allen Tackett has asked that his proposal to change the name of Coonskin Park be removed from the agenda of Thursday’s parks board meeting.

Tackett sai...

Car wreck, work injury end family dreams


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Sometimes all it takes is one accident to send a hard-working family into poverty.

Annie, 29, had a good job and a promising future until she was hit broadside by a car while driving home...

Coonskin Park’s name has roots in history


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The “coonskin” in Coonskin Park’s name goes back more than 100 years, and the name was well established by the time the park was completed in 1950, historic documents show....

City announces annual GoodNight schedule


Charleston city officials announced the schedule Monday morning for the city’s annual GoodNight celebration.

The night of music and arts performances runs from 6 to 10 p.m. Dec. 31 at various venues around t...

Two resign from solid waste board


Two key members of the Kanawha County Solid Waste Authority’s governing board have announced their resignations.

Solid Waste Authority chairwoman Kasey Russell and immediate past chairman Rod Watkins each to...

Parks officials may change name of Coonskin Park


The head of the Kanawha County Parks and Recreation Commission wants to change the name of Coonskin Park in Charleston.

“I’ve had two or three people say they were offended by the name Coonskin Park,&...

Nitro recycler to take Slack Street material


A recycling center in Nitro has agreed to take tons of recyclables from the Slack Street recycling center while Kanawha County solid waste officials figure out how to salvage the county’s foundering recycling prog...

Fire destroys Elkview home


Fire destroyed a house near Elkview on Thursday night

The blaze was reported at a home on Garth Drive at about 7:15 p.m.

Deputy Kanawha County Emergency Services Director C.W. Sigman said the fire apparently...

Retired astronaut encourages students to reach for the stars


NEW HAVEN — Don Thomas was in kindergarten when the United States sent its first man into space.

That was in 1961, and from that moment on, Thomas knew that he wanted to be an a...

St. Albans woman admits killing mother, gets up to 70 years


A St. Albans woman was sentenced Wednesday morning to up to 70 years in prison for strangling her mother to death, hiding her body in the shed of her West Main Street home and using her bank card to steal money.


Steel beams arriving for Coonskin Park bridge


Officials for Coonskin Park said contractors plan to start putting up steel this week on a new bridge to span the Elk River into Coonskin Park.

“They’ve got both sides ready, and they’re ready ...

Learning the ropes: First-year sheriff’s deputy nearly done with field training


Kanawha County Sheriff’s Deputy John Kiser is finished with four months of field training, where he has been accompanying more experienced deputies in learning the ins and outs of police work.

Kiser, 25, was...

Judge dismisses much of discrimination lawsuit


A circuit judge has dismissed several claims in a lawsuit by a former Kanawha County Metro 911 employee who claims she was discriminated against for blowing the whistle on other county officials.

Laura Wilson, form...

Kanawha recycling center cuts drop-off hours


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Officials with the Kanawha County Solid Waste Authority are slashing public drop-off hours at the Slack Street recycling center, in Charleston, starting next week.

Solid Waste Authority E...

Kanawha deputies collecting food for Union Mission


Kanawha County sheriff’s deputies are collecting canned goods to help the Union Mission.

Sheriff Johnny Rutherford said collection bins will be set up Wednesday through Dec. 17 at all five sheriff’s d...

Kanawha deputy, victim ID’d in cruiser wreck


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Charleston police continued Monday to investigate why a Kanawha County sheriff’s deputy crashed his cruiser through a gate and into a townhouse Sunday night, sending both the deputy and ...

Communities scramble to renew safety levies


Among the casualties of the Nov. 4 general election in West Virginia were several public safety levies that provided funding for ambulance service and fire protection for local communities.

Public safety levies in ...

Shoppers brave cold for hot holiday deals


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — With Thursday-afternoon temperatures struggling to claw their way out of the mid-30s and a menacing sky threatening to spit snow, Debbie Amos sat huddled against the wall beneath a fuzzy brown ...

Fayette County mother shares home for the holidays


Whenever Grace Bare Rogers gets together with her children — be it one or all 10 — she invariably ends up around the kitchen table, playing cards.

“She usually wins,” said Peggy McCarty,...

Police chief wants suspended officer fired, sources say


Police Chief Brent Webster has recommended how to discipline a suspended Charleston police officer accused of making racially insensitive videos.

Webster said this morning he couldn’t disclose his recommenda...

County agrees to help with Slack Street cleanup


Kanawha County commissioners voted Tuesday to provide $15,000 to help with cleanup at Charleston’s Slack Street Recycling Center.

James Young, director of the Kanawha County Solid Waste Authority, told Commi...

Recycling center dealing with big, rotting mess


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Kanawha County Solid Waste Authority Executive Director James Young said he hopes to have most of the piles of soggy, moldering junk choking the Slack Street recycling center cleared out by the...

Gazette Charities: Woman takes in sister’s 7 kids, but means are limited


The Union Mission helps people from all over.

People like Shelley, who agreed to take in her sister’s seven children and raise them along with her own three kids when the sister got into trouble and faced lo...

Kanawha County may help bail out recycling program


Kanawha County Commissioner Dave Hardy believes commissioners and other county officials are going to have to pitch in to save the county’s failing recycling program.

Earlier this month, members of the gover...

Kanawha parks officials settle with Coonskin logger


Kanawha County parks officials voted today to accept a $50,000 court settlement from a logger who cut down more than 300 trees in Coonskin Park during May and June of 2013.

Members of the Kanawha County Parks and R...

Recycling center to cut hours, stop taking glass


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Charleston’s Slack Street recycling center will stop accepting glass and cut back on hours to help cut costs, members of the Kanawha County Solid Waste Authority board decided Tuesday.

Miller sworn in as Kanawha prosecutor


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Longtime federal prosecutor Charles “Chuck” Miller was named by Kanawha County commissioners Monday morning to fill the last two years of the term of ousted county Prosecuting Att...

Water company replacing 80-year-old water lines


West Virginia American Water spokeswoman Laura Jordan stood on a mound of dirt overlooking a massive trench, where construction crews struggled to fit a 20-inch pipe joint on a water line in the town of Belle.


Equipment removed from Slack Street recycling center


A massive baler and other heavy equipment needed to sort and package recyclable materials were removed Wednesday from Kanawha County’s Slack Street recycling center.

James Young, executive director of the Ka...

She also served: Belle honors female veteran


Not every veteran of World War II served on the front lines.

Mildred Yates, of Belle, served on the home front, helping build aircraft parts for the war effort and later packing parachutes and equipment for the U.S...

Charleston mayor’s son charged with drug possession


The son of Charleston Mayor Danny Jones was arrested on Monday and charged with simple possession of prescription drugs, the mayor confirmed this morning.

Jones said he did not know details of the arrest, but confi...

Sculptor recounts history of W.Va. veterans memorial


For Charleston sculptor Joe Mullins, building a memorial to honor West Virginia’s war dead turned out to be a more than 10-year battle.

Mullins recounted the sometimes tumultuous history of the West Virginia...

Good News garage gets new digs


Staff members at Charleston’s Good News Mountaineer Garage were running around like ants Thursday, getting their new West Side facility ready for a grand-opening party and auction this weekend.


Gregory resigns as chairman of Lincoln PSD


Longtime Kanawha and Lincoln County political figure Ron Gregory has resigned as chairman of the controversy-steeped Lincoln Public Service District.

Gregory informed members of the Lincoln County Commission of his...

No charges anticipated against man who shot intruder


Kanawha County sheriff’s deputies don’t intend to file criminal charges against a Campbell’s Creek man who fatally shot an intruder in his home early Wednesday.

Cpl. Brian Humphreys of the Kana...

Shores wins seventh term as Kanawha commissioner


Kanawha County Commissioner Hoppy Shores easily won a seventh term on Tuesday.

With unofficial votes tallied for all of Kanawha County’s 165 precincts, Shores, a Republican, was well ahead of Democratic ...

Second harassment lawsuit filed against director of Lincoln PSD


A second employee of the Lincoln Public Service District has filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against PSD chairman Ron Gregory.

Last month, Gregory was charged with assault in Kanawha County Magistrate Court after...

Boone man in custody following standoff with deputies


UNEEDA — Boone County sheriff’s deputies safely ended a standoff early this morning with a man whom they said was suicidal.

Boone County Chief Sheriff’s Deputy Chad...

Parts of W.Va. to see season’s first snowfall


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — West Virginia will flirt with its first real snowfall of the season this weekend, but forecasters think most of the snow will be south of Charleston.

“I can’t rule out the o...

Police urge vigilance following rash of Charleston car break-ins


Charleston police are urging drivers to hide purses, wallets, phones and other valuables when they park, following a rash of car break-ins around the city.

Chief of detectives Lt. Steve Cooper said there have been ...

National Guard leaders from around U.S. in W.Va. to discuss budget cuts


National Guard leaders from across the nation are in West Virginia this week to talk about how to deal with federally mandated budget cuts.

Maj. Gen. James Hoyer, West Virginia’s adjutant general, said adjut...

Deputies say they know what caused gun to go off in deputy’s holster


Kanawha County sheriff’s deputies have been able to recreate a series of events that allowed a deputy’s gun to go off in the holster on Tuesday.

On Tuesday, Chris Atha and two other deputies were esco...

Kanawha prosecutor interviews to be public


Kanawha County commissioners voted Tuesday to conduct interviews for a replacement for Prosecuting Attorney Mark Plants in public, hours after county Republicans endorsed three people to replace the beleaguered prosecuto...

Kanawha commissioners pull plug on local business incubator


Members of the Kanawha County Commission voted to pull the plug Tuesday on the Upper Kanawha Valley Enterprise Community, a business incubator in Chelyan that was set up with federal grant money about 10 years ago to pro...

Extra deputies to patrol over Halloween weekend


Kanawha County Sheriff Johnny Rutherford has ordered extra patrols over the Halloween holiday.

Sheriff’s Department spokesman Capt. Sean Crosier said between 21 and 24 extra deputies will be on patrol Wednes...

Jail rate staying the same


Officials in some of West Virginia’s more populous counties are breathing a sigh of relief that the cost to house prisoners in the state jail system isn’t going up this year.

In 2012, following severa...

Weekend event offers help for problem gamblers


He thought he had his gambling under control until he lost his job, his family and ended up in prison for shuffling around money in an attempt to cover his gambling debts.

“I treat [gambling] as a cancer,&#x...

Skaff stopped after allegedly turning into wrong traffic lane


Just before his arrest on a charge of driving under the influence Saturday, Kanawha County Delegate and state Senate candidate Doug Skaff was pulled over after allegedly driving in the wrong lane after turning onto a Mor...