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Blue River murder suspect arrested

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A 22-year-old Blue man who is a suspect in a Sunday murder has been arrested, according to the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation.Mark Anthony Neal was booked into jail for suspicion of first-degree murder in the shooting death of Frank Wendell Owens II, 22, Bennington, who was found Sunday evening on Old Highway 70 near the Blue River Bridge, according to authorities. He was taken to the Medical Center of Southeastern Oklahoma in Durant where he died.Neal was taken into custody Monday after a search and series of interviews, according to OSBI spokesperson Gary Perkinson.The victim’s pickup was discovered burning at approximately 2:15 a.m. Monday east of Blue River on Highway 70.


Child hides in home after someone breaks in

On July 29 at 1:35 p.m. Bryan County 911 received a call from a 14-year-old child reporting that someone was breaking into her home on Star Road located in the community of Silo, the Bryan County Sheriff’s Office said.The child hide in the house and stayed on the phone with the 911 operator while sheriff’s deputies and Chickasaw Lighthorse police responded to the residence.Upon arrival, deputies discovered the back door had been kicked in and items in the hom...

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Summer reading program has a magical end

As summer comes close to an end so did the summer reading program at the Donald W. Reynolds Library.The program ended Friday by honoring the top readers in each class followed by snacks, face painting, games and magic.Top readers included Ellie Henderson, Kaydee Current, Jacee Bentley, Jordan Hammond and Jonathan Davis. Emily Wright earned the title of overall top reader with over 400 book read this summer.Each top reader was given a $25 gift card and a certif...

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SE Cross Country picked fourth in GAC poll

Southeastern’s cross country team has been picked to finish fourth in the Great American Conference according to the preseason poll released on Monday.The Savage Storm is coming off a third place finish in the GAC Championship meet in 2013 after opening that season picked to finish eighth.SE returns three runners from last season’s breakout squad, including all-conference honorees Bailee Weger and Haylee Story, along with Amanda Kirby who was twice SE’s...

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Durant Chamber hosts Christmas in July

The Durant Area Chamber of Commerce and stores lining North Second Avenue in Durant hosted a Christmas in July block party Saturday.The party began with a fashion show displaying clothing that can be bought in the Second Avenue shops. Entertainment for the evening consisted of a series of dances performed by the Spirit Champ Cheer and Dance Studio.The hot-dog meals served for $5 came with a unique twist. Each meal came with the chance to win a weekend at the Choctaw Casi...

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Man arrested for suspicion of Sunday slaying

Suspects are being questioned and authorities have taken one person into custody in the shooting death of a man in Blue who was killed Sunday evening, according to the Bryan County Sheriff’s Office.Mark Anthony Neal was taken into custody Monday after a search, according to the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation. He is a suspect in the shooting death of Wendall Owens.The sheriff’s office has confirmed Owens was found near Blue River Bridge in Armstrong. T...

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Authorities investigating homicide, suspect arrested

Suspects are being questioned and authorities have taken one person into custody in the shooting death of a man in Blue who was killed Sunday evening, according to the Bryan County Sheriff’s Office.One person was taken into custody Monday after a search and other persons were being questioned.The sheriff’s office has confirmed Wendall Owens was found near Blue River Bridge in Armstrong.Owens was the victim of a Sunday evening shooting. Golden said ...

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Oklahoma has top team at NHSFR

ROCK SPRINGS, Wyo. — The Oklahoma team was the big winner at the 2014 National High School Finals Rodeo, and even the queen hails from the Sooner State.Following a week of competition that featured more than 1,500 contestants from all across the United States, Canada and Australia, the national champions were crowned July 19 at the Sweetwater Events Complex.

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Choctaw firefighters home after battling out-of-state wild land fire

DURANT – Recently, two forestry team members returned from a 16-day stent in Arizona battling an intense fire on Apache lands. Prevention tech Joshua Bates and Wallace Kitchel, dozer operator, were dispatched to the fire due to the need for special fire fighting techniques.

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Local athletes make OCA All-State team

Three Bryan County baseball standouts will play in the Oklahoma Coaches Association All-State game next week.Silo grads Lance House and Leonard Sandler and Calera alum Caleb Phillips — along with Tushka’s Jaeson Nutt — are set to take the field for the Small East ...

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Girls of summer come out to play

BLUE — The Rock Creek Lady Mustangs hosted a several teams Friday for some round-robin, fast-pitch softball action.And it was a hot one for the girls of summer, with a heat index surpassing the century mark.The Lady Mustangs took on Battiest in the first game. Mckenzie Powell was the starting pitcher, and last season’s short stop Arie Young came on to start the top of the fourth.The game was a shutout on both sides until the bottom of the fourth. R...

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Durant Police Department permanently honors the past

The Durant Police Department decorated its lobby on Friday with the photos of former police chiefs and retired officers and employees to honor the past.Friday morning, 14 retired sworn officers, five retired civilian employees, 20 former police chiefs and current Chief Durward Cook were honored during a ceremony in appreciation to those who have served the department.Each honoree or a representing family member or officer took a framed photo as each name was called....

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Phillips signs with MSC

Caleb Phillips has signed up to continue his baseball career at Murray State College.The 2014 Calera grad played first base for the Bulldogs. He turned in a team-leading .429 batting average in his final season and posted a .571 slugging average. In his 91 trips to the plate, Phillips hit 29 singles, eight doubles, a triple and a home run. He also had 17 stolen bases and accounted for 36 scores. His fielding percentage was almost perfect at .983 through 31 games.Phillips...

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Follow beef quality assurance guidelines

Summer time often brings a few infectious ailments to beef cows. Common problems include eye infections and foot rot. Treatment of affected cows will often involve the use of antibiotics. On very rare occasions violative residues of pharmaceutical products have been found in carcass tissues of cull beef cows. Violations of drug residue regulations can result in expensive fines (or even worse, jail time) for the rancher and a “black-eye” for the entire beef industry. It is vital th...

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Former Democrat editor Richard Chase dies

The Durant Daily Democrat is saddened to learn of the passing Saturday morning of Richard Chase, who was a former editor of the paper in the 1990s, and had been a freelance feature writer for us the past couple of years.Chase was a decorated Marine Corps Vietnam veteran who has also worked for Big Five and the Atoka County Times, and until his death, was active in helping the community through the Bryan County Soundoff Facebook page.His funeral will be at 10 a.m. Wednesd...

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The Dawgs got a new house

Center court in the new gym.Calera’s new gym features four retractable goals, two along each side of the floor. The new facility also house seventh- and eighth-grade classrooms and a computer lab.A bulldog graphic is on the wall above the concession stand greets fans entering the gym, along with a geometric decor.The score table is personalized for Calera High. The gym also features theater-style seating with rows of bench seating along the top....

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Closure of JCP Specialty Foods to cost about 80 jobs

JCP Specialty Foods in Durant is expected to close this week and cost about 80 people their jobs.A person at the local office would not confirm or deny the closure, however The Democrat has learned that operations are expected to cease Thursday. The 134,764-square-foot plant is located on East Highway 70 in Durant.Durant Industrial Authority Executive Director Tommy Kramer said the DIA had previously been asked to help in the marketing efforts to sell the plant....

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Local cowboys compete at NJHFR

DES MOINES, Iowa — Two young Bryan County cowboys competed at the 2014 National Junior High Finals Rodeo in June.Britt Duncan of Kenefic and Joseph Rochelle of Bennington traveled to Des Moines, Iowa, to compete in the boys goat tying event.Duncan finished in seventh place with a 32.76 final average. Rochelle turned in a 10.8 to fall in the 102nd slot.

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