A Richmond man has died after his Ford Focus was pinned under a semi trailer on Interstate 70 on Wednesday (Nov. 11). The two-vehicle crash occurred on westbound I-70 near the 149 mile-marker on Richmond’s north side. Emergency personnel were notified at 9:15 a.m. of a crash involving a semi tractor/trailer and a passenger car. Wayne County sheriff’s deputies were first to arrive on scene, but at Sheriff Randy Retter’s request, Indiana State Police assumed the investigation.
Fayette County health officials announced that the county has some of the worst COVID-19 statistics in the country. Wayne County also is struggling to slow the virus’ spread, with about 75 new cases reported daily on two days last week, and Reid Health setting a one-day record Friday for the number of patients in COVID containment areas. Monday morning, Pfizer and Biontech announced promising early results in a clinical trial vaccine indicating it was effective in more than 90% of trial participants. Read the full press release here.
Impact on Wayne County, Reid
In the week ending Nov.
Wayne County Election Board has voted to extend one Wayne County vote center for 30 minutes on Tuesday night, but that did not get approved by a judge. Election officials had a problem getting voting machines to work when the vote center opened at 6 a.m. at Mt. Olive Baptist Church, 1108 N. H St. in Richmond. It was eventually determined a bent prong in a cord kept the machines from working for approximately 26 minutes.
Wayne County’s positive COVID cases have now surpassed 1,700, as of Sunday, Nov. 1, and the county counts 36 deaths related to the virus. The county’s number of lab-confirmed positives have been increasing by the dozens in daily data released from Indiana State Department of Health. Three of the recent local deaths related to COVID-19 all have been in the community, with none from long-term care facilities, according to Christine Stinson, executive director of Wayne County Health Department. Local health officials said they had just been notified Wednesday about the death of a 65-year-old female who died Oct.
When face mask requirements took effect in long-term care facilities, Amanda Marquis said the usually friendly atmosphere at The Leland Legacy changed, because residents and staff couldn’t see each other smile or talk. Staff soon found several ways to bring joy to residents, and even spread that joy to the community, earning a Spirit Award from Wayne County Area Chamber of Commerce a few days ago. “This is just one of the initiatives that surfaced through the year of COVID-19, but it was incredibly impactful,” said Melissa Vance, the chamber’s president and CEO. “The hearts in the windows at The Leland Legacy and other locations throughout the community highlighted that sense of camaraderie that I think we all needed to feel – especially those that felt so alone, such as the elderly or the business owner trying to keep their doors open. It is a pleasure to highlight this simple gesture that carried the loud message that Wayne County residents care about each other.”
Placing hundreds of brightly colored paper hearts in windows has been just one of The Leland Legacy’s projects to boost morale.
Local restaurant owners are among those urging Wayne County residents to wear masks, social distance, and wash their hands so that they don’t go out of business and kids don’t have lifelong health problems.
During a press conference aired on WCTV on Thursday, Oct. 22, local business and tourism leaders as well as government officials asked residents to take measures as a united team to protect themselves and others from the deadly virus and keep local businesses and schools open. Zack Parker, an owner of Roscoe’s Coffee Bar and Tap Room, said the community mostly has been great about compliance with health guidelines. However, he is concerned about the nearly daily harassment some of his teen and young adult employees have taken from customers decades older who don’t want to wear a mask and intend to start a fight, calling it “ridiculous.” “You are the ones that are perpetuating this pandemic by refusing to be responsible and do the right thing,” Parker said.
At its Thursday, Oct. 22 meeting, Wayne County Health Board issued a new list of directives to schools, many of which are related to sporting events, because of moderate to high community spread of the COVID-19 virus. Restrictions including limiting the number of students to those athletes who will compete; eliminating cheerleading, bands or other spirit activities; providing two tickets to each dressed player; monitoring and requiring social distancing and masking for players, coaches and fans; eliminating large-group activities or assemblies; and sending home any students with symptoms.
Schools are to discuss with parents the importance of their family’s behaviors outside school and encourage parents to limit or eliminate the social events their student attends. As they explained the new requirements, a letter signed by superintendents from Nettle Creek, Northeastern, Centerville and Western Wayne school districts said that at this time, “we will continue to operate school as we have been.” “In order for our schools to remain open, we need everyone to continue to help us do that.
Wayne County and Richmond officials are considering some steps to try to reduce future cases of COVID-19 as the numbers of deaths and sick people surge. A press conference is planned for Thursday afternoon with city and county leaders to announce what they believe should be done to prevent more illness and deaths. As of Wednesday, Oct. 21, Wayne County has had 1,221 lab-confirmed positive cases of the virus, which is an increase of more than 200 cases in less than two weeks. Wednesday’s numbers from the daily Indiana Department of Health report show a one-day increase of 29 local cases.
A woman died after being struck by a train on Richmond’s far-east side. Shortly before 3 p.m. Friday, Oct. 16, Richmond Police Department officers responded to a report of a woman struck by a train near Gravel Pit Road. Gravel Pit Road extends north of U.S. 40, just west of Red Lobster, 5400 National Road E. The train tracks are northwest of the commercial district of restaurants and hotels, with trains on that track occasionally visible to those approaching the state line. Upon arrival, officers and medical personnel found the female west of the Gravel Pit Road crossing.
Wayne County has had its 17th and 18th deaths related to COVID-19 within a few days of each other, and officials are very concerned about an increase in the county’s cases, just surpassing 1,000. “Our cases are surging and we are very concerned,” said Wayne County Health Department Executive Director Christine Stinson. “We have seen a dramatic increase in cases in people over 70. It is vital we all do our part for our community, wear a mask when in public, do not attend large events.” The county’s 17th death was a female in her 80s living in a long-term care facility, according to Stinson.