Blog Page 2

Photo gallery: Airline vs. Ruston volleyball jamboree


Images from Saturday’s Airline vs. Ruston game in the Varsity Volleyball Jamboree at Airline

Volleyball: Varsity Jamboree at Airline scores


Scores Saturday in the Varsity Volleyball Jamboree at Airline

Airline 25, Caddo Magnet 14
Caddo Magnet 25, Northwood 21
Caddo Magnet 25, Haughton 20
Northwood 25, Haughton 16
Captain Shreve 25, Northwood 16
Haughton 25, Byrd 21
Byrd 25, Captain Shreve 19
Ruston 25, Captain Shreve 10
Ruston 29, Byrd 27
Airline 25, Ruston 23

Obituary – Betty Johnson


Betty Johnson

Betty Johnson

HAUGHTON, LA – Betty Carolyn Cates Johnson was born on July 30th, 1963, in Beaumont, Texas as the baby of four children. She moved to Converse, Louisiana at a young age where she excelled as a student and athlete, maintaining perfect grades and winning a state championship in softball. During her senior year, she met Rusty Johnson and the two of them hit it off immediately. They were married on May 22nd, 1981 and they would live happily together for the next 35 years. They had four children. Carolyn passed away on August 25th, 2016.

Services will be held on Monday August 29th, 2016 at 2:00 PM with Rev. Uriah Oxford officiating at Hill Crest Memorial Chapel with burial to follow at Hill Crest Memorial Park. Visitation will be held on Sunday, August 28th, 2016 from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM at Hill Crest Funeral Home.

Carolyn graduated from Northwestern State University as both a registered nurse and later a nurse practitioner, where she never made anything lower than top grades. She loved working with patients and helping them heal and live healthy lives. Countless numbers of people have Carolyn to thank for her tireless efforts as a medical practitioner at both Willis-Knighton hospital and Ark-La-Tex Cardiology.

Carolyn’s greatest achievement was as a wife and mother. She encouraged her husband to attend college at Louisiana State University and achieve his dream of coaching. She was the rock to him through all of life’s ups and downs. To her four children, she was a constant support and loving presence. She never missed ball games or dance recitals and she was never too busy to be there for her family.

Carolyn was an inspiration to many during her long and arduous fight with cancer. She always fought with a deep well of strength, courage, and perseverance. She was a fighter throughout her entire life and she was not going to let anything keep her from enjoying her time with family and friends. Her ability to stay strong and confront her disease with grace and dignity gave the people around her the strength they needed to fight with her.

Carolyn is preceded in death by her parents, James and Betty Cates, and her sister, Charlotte Cates. Carolyn is survived by her husband, Rusty, and children, Todd and his wife Brittany, Tyler, Allison, and Lauren, her sister, Cathy Johnson and her husband Patrick, her brother, James Cates and his wife Martha, father-in-law, A.D. Johnson and his wife Susan, sister-in-law, Penny Horne and her husband Jeff, sister-in-law, Jennifer White and her husband Ricky, sister-in-law, Kristy Free and her husband Ronnie, and many nieces, nephews, and countless friends who loved her deeply.

Her family and friends would like to thank the doctors and staff at Willis-Knighton hospital, the Willis-Knighton Cancer Center, the Progressive Care Center, Cornerstone Hospital, Ark-La-Tex Cardiology, C.E. Byrd High School, and the many people who worked tirelessly to help Carolyn overcome her sickness.

Honoring Carolyn as pallbearers will be Jeff Horne, Buddy McCullin, Steve Melton, Pat Johnson, Dr. Scott Wiggins, Dudley Glenn, and Larry Patrick.

Please visit to leave online condolences for the family.

Hill Crest Memorial Funeral Home
Haughton, LA

Photo Gallery: Construction at Airline HS

Photo by Amanda Simmons/Press-Tribune

Airline High School is the largest high school in Bossier Parish.

To accommodate a future student population of 2,000, school is currently under construction to alleviate the growing pains. An initial phase refurbished restrooms, the auditorium, the cafeteria and created a new outdoor dining commons area.  The new new F wing is also finished.

Current construction projects include a new E wing along with renovations to the Administration area, Media & Lobby.

Photos by Amanda Simmons/Press-Tribune

Bossier deputies combat looting in south Louisiana

Photo by Lt. Raymond Barnes, Bossier Sheriff's Office

The team of five deputies who deployed to south Louisiana Thursday afternoon began patrolling the streets early Friday morning of hard-hit Livingston Parish that was flooded in order to keep homes and businesses safe from looting.

“These people are completely devastated, and a lot of them have lost everything,” said Lt. Raymond Barnes, Bossier Sheriff’s Office.

However, as sickening as it may sound, there are some who are taking advantage of flood victims – by looting their flooded homes and businesses. Bossier deputies and other law enforcement officers are assisting Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Office to keep that from happening.

“We are checking on the residents and giving them our direct phone numbers so they can call us and report any suspicious activity,” Lt. Barnes said.

Barnes said that streets are lined with household items and all kinds of debris that have been removed from homes that were damaged by the historic flood waters. Some people are going down the street to look through that debris, and then others are wandering into the garage or even the homes of these residences to take what doesn’t belong to them, Lt. Barnes said.

“We are making our presence known in the area so we can stop that!,” said Lt. Barnes. “Residents here have expressed just how appreciative they are that we and the officers from other agencies are here to help.”

Photo by Lt. Raymond Barnes, Bossier Sheriff's Office
Photo by Lt. Raymond Barnes, Bossier Sheriff’s Office

UPDATE: Walker Place Park reopened


As of Aug. 27, Walker Place Park has been reopened.

Original post (Aug. 26, 2016):

Walker Place Park, on CenturyLink Drive at Walker Place, is temporarily closed due to a swarm of bees.

The bees were stirred up after a tree limb containing their hive fell last night due to the stormy weather. Bossier City Department of Parks and Recreation is working to remedy the situation. The bees were discovered this morning when department employees attempted to remove the fallen limb.

Media will be advised once the bees have been cleared from the park.

Sen. Ryan Gatti, Rep. Gene Reynolds carrying supplies to flood victims

Rep. Gene Reynolds, District 10, and his wife, Martha, headed to Baton Rouge last week with a 15-foot trailer loaded with supplies to help the victims of flooding in south Louisiana. (Courtesy Photo)

By Michelle Bates,

For the past week, Bossier’s Sen. Ryan Gatti, District 36, and Minden’s Rep. Gene Reynolds, District 10, have been taking in supplies at their offices to help victims of the flooding in south Louisiana.

While Gatti’s focus remains on school supplies, he has taken in hygiene products such as toothpaste, toothbrushes, bath soap, wash clothes, towels, feminine hygiene products, cleaning supplies and all the things people need to survive. Hygiene kits including these items would be helpful, he said.

“We’re strategically collecting things we know will be used,” he said. “Whatever God puts on your heart to donate, bring it to us.”

Gatti is asking for the following school supplies: crayons, markers, pencils, pens, composition notebooks, loose-leaf paper, binders, glue sticks, folders, pencil bags, hand sanitizer and backpacks.

“Families just bought them; they’re expensive,” he said. “They’re ruined, and it’s very hard for a family to buy that again. We’ve had several backpacks with everything in it donated.”

He says the easiest way to donate is for those who have children and have bought school supplies already, take the school supply list they had and buy as much as affordable on that list.

For those who wish to donate money, Gatti respectfully requests that any monetary donations be made by going online, purchasing these items and have them shipped directly to the two churches that have become relief centers.

Gatti says he’s also collecting Bibles to take down south.

Families are in shelters across the south, and children are going to need activities to keep them occupied as flood relief continues. Both Reynolds and Gatti are asking for donations of crayons, coloring books, puzzles and games to help keep the kids busy.

Some of the biggest needs, Gatti says, are baby items such as diapers, baby wipes, formula, baby food, bottles, sippy cups, plates, children’s utensils and pacifiers. And for those who can afford it or have one in good shape, a Pack-n-Play. Bedding is also going to be important, such as sheets for the Pack-n-Play, blankets and pillows.

Rep. Gene Reynolds, District 10, began taking in supplies at his office last week.

“When Rita hit, Martha and I made several of these trips down there, because I know what they’re going through,” he said. “It’s not going to be over Wednesday, and it’s not going to be over Saturday. It’s going to take a long time to survive this. I know what they’re going through, especially since Rita and Ike. That’s the reason I’m doing it.”

He took in cleaning supplies, canned goods, water, paper towels, toilet paper, trash bags, gently used clothing, diapers and pull ups, bedding, toiletry items, activities for the children such as coloring books and crayons as well as many other items.

He says they will make these trips as often as necessary, because someone helped them. The Reynolds had a beach house on Holly Beach and when Hurricane Rita hit, it cleared Holly Beach of everything. They lost everything on the beach, he said.

In light of that, the main supplies he is asking for are things such as mops, brooms, bleach, mold killer, rubber gloves, anything those affected can begin cleaning their homes with.
Reynolds and Gatti will continue to take in supplies as needed for as long as needed.

“We have some of the most generous people in Louisiana,” Gatti said. “Minden is known as the nicest city, but it’s more compassionate. Webster Parish is really a unique place when it comes to giving and compassion.”

Donations can be dropped off at these locations:

Rep. Gene Reynolds
736 Main Street
Minden, LA

Sen. Ryan Gatti
2123 Shed Road
Bossier City, LA
(Monday through Friday 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. until noon)

Smith’s Marine, 1616 Shreveport, Road, Minden
Office Furniture Source, 730 Bert Kouns, Shreveport
BPCC on Highway 80, Bossier City
Elm Grove Middle School in carline or at office
Dennis Bamburg/Allstate Insurance 1814 Jimmie Davis Highway, Bossier City, LA 71112

Student comes back from serious accident to pursue her dream


NATCHITOCHES – It’s doubtful anyone was looking forward to the fall semester at Northwestern State University more than Lauren Edwards.


The sophomore nursing major from Shreveport was scheduled to begin classes on Northwestern State’s Natchitoches campus last fall. Days before she was to move into a campus residence hall, Edwards was involved in a traffic accident on La. Highway 1 near Shreveport. She had to be extricated from her car and had serious injuries that required months of rehabilitation.

Lauren Edwards
Lauren Edwards

“I don’t remember much about that day,” said Edwards, a 2015 graduate of Byrd High School. “ I don’t remember getting ready or leaving the house. All I remember is my dog Cricket playing with a bunch of socks like they were a toy.”


In the accident, Edwards suffered a traumatic brain injury, broke her left femur, had a skull fracture of the left side and broke her nose, cheek and jaw in three places. She recalls waking up in physical therapy later, but admits the next six weeks are not clear to her. Edwards spent three months in rehabilitation hospitals, the last seven weeks at two facilities in Houston. She was able to take two classes on NSU’s Shreveport campus last spring. Edwards has largely recovered but still has some pain and occasionally may have trouble remembering or thinking of a specific word but she was determined to be at Northwestern State for the start of fall classes.


“I was a little nervous because I didn’t really know anyone on campus,” she said. “But I am also excited and ready to learn. I really wanted to get the full college experience in Natchitoches before starting clinicals.”


Edwards is philosophical about her accident taking a long-term view of the events.


“Maybe this was God’s plan for me,” said Edwards. “Perhaps this will allow me to better understand what the patient goes through and will make me a better nurse.”


Edwards career plan began to take shape during her junior year in high school.


“I love taking care of people,” she said. “I want to be a trauma nurse. That field seems like a calling to me. I would have a chance to help patients who could be going through what I was.”


Edwards admits going through a life-threatening event has changed her.


“I know how things can change in an instant,” said Edwards. “I don’t take things for granted. I have a grateful heart knowing I have the opportunity to pursue my career dream.”


Edwards hopes to enter clinicals next fall and graduate in 2019. Despite the accident, she plans to graduate on her original schedule. While at Byrd, Edwards gained 30 hours of credit at NSU through the dual enrollment program that allows high school students to take college classes during the school day.

Bossier Lions Club Jamboree cancelled


The 63rd annual Bossier Lions Club Jamboree scheduled for Friday night has been cancelled. It will not be rescheduled.

The decision was made Thursday night after heavy rain inundated the area starting in the evening and into the night. Concerns about field conditions caused by the rain and the possibility of more Friday prompted the cancellation.

Thursday’s Freshman Jamboree at Bossier High was also cancelled.

It was scheduled to start at 4:30 p.m. with a game between North Webster and Minden. Those teams were at the stadium but frequent lightning kept them off the field.

After about an hour and 15 minutes, with heavy rain and lightning still present, officials made the decision to cancel it.

Obituary – McKenzie Nicole Wells


McKenzie Wells

McKenzie Nicole Wells (Kenzie)

HAUGHTON, LA – McKenzie Nicole (Kenzie) Wells, 18, of Haughton, passed away August 22, 2016, at WK Bossier Hospital. She was born at Blanchfield Army Community Hospital, Fort Campbell, KY on September 29, 1997, and was the daughter of Brandon and Monica Wells of Haughton, LA. McKenzie was a lover of life and family. She was a teacher of compassion, understanding, patience, love, strength, and a will that cannot be matched. She touched the lives of everyone she met. Our precious Angel will be greatly missed and was a true fighter to the very end.

McKenzie is also survived by one brother, Brandon McGirr and wife Tiffany of St. George, SC; two sisters, Brittney Fallon and husband Anthony of Fernley, NV, and Alexandra DeHoyas of California; grandparents, David and Joy Wells of Bossier City, Ray and Pat Robles of Wake Forest, NC, and Charlene Smith of Haughton; nieces, Haley, Eve, Abby, Brandi, Audrey, and Kaylyn; along with many aunts, uncles and cousins.

Services for McKenzie will be held at 10:00 a.m., Friday, August 26, 2016, at Hill Crest Memorial Funeral Home, officiated by Rev. Deryl Jones. Interment will follow in Haughton Cemetery. Visitation will be held on Thursday evening from 6-8 p.m. at the funeral home.
Pallbearers are the Haughton Fire Dept, Andy Bartlett, Sean Stewart, Brad Dean, Bruce Kinney, B.J. Sonnier, Christian Avery, and Jimmy Holland.

In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to Shriners Hospital and or organizations that help Special Needs Children.

You may offer condolences to the family by visiting www.hillcrestmemorialfh. com.

Hill Crest Memorial Funeral Home
Haughton, LA